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Incubus   Listen
Incubus

noun
(pl. E. incubuses, L. incubi)
1.
A male demon believed to lie on sleeping persons and to have sexual intercourse with sleeping women.
2.
A situation resembling a terrifying dream.  Synonym: nightmare.
3.
Someone who depresses or worries others.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Incubus" Quotes from Famous Books



... not name him just now. This enemy of mine, knowing him to be weak,—knowing him to be an idiot, has got hold of him and persuaded him. He believes the story which is told to him, and then feels happy in shaking off an incubus. No doubt I have not been very soft with him,—nor, indeed, hard. I have kept out of his way, and he is willing to resent it; but he is afraid to face me and tell me that it is so. Here are the girls come back ...
— Mr. Scarborough's Family • Anthony Trollope

... that America was not yet aeons distant from this Japanese institution, the male incubus of the girl child. She did not speak, for she was thinking of what she had said in the studio—of the edginess of her temper. "Spinsters may scold, but not spiritual mothers," she thought. She might have been very happy, but for a mental anchor fast to that gloomy ...
— Fate Knocks at the Door - A Novel • Will Levington Comfort

... Christ's followers in reference to the influence and leavening of public opinion upon this matter, and to see to it that, in so far as we can help, we set ourselves steadfastly against that devilish spirit which still oppresses with an incubus almost intolerable, the nations of so-called Christendom. Lift up your voices be not afraid, but cry, 'We are the followers of the Prince of Peace, and we war against the war that is ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - St. Matthew Chaps. IX to XXVIII • Alexander Maclaren

... discover the reason for the failure of the theatrical season, some people have made quite a ferocious attack upon the "deadhead," who really has nothing to do with the case. He has been spoken of as an incubus. Some people regard the free entry of the caput mortuum with a hostility like that shown by our ancestors (and to some extent ourselves) to ...
— Our Stage and Its Critics • "E.F.S." of "The Westminster Gazette"

... all its colour by it. The shapes which are found beneath are the crafty beings that thrive in darkness, and the weaker organisms kept helpless by it. He who turns the stone over is whosoever puts the staff of truth to the old lying incubus, no matter whether he do it with a serious face or a laughing one. The next year stands for the coming time. Then shall the nature which had lain blanched and broken rise in its full stature and native hues in the sunshine. Then shall God's ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes

... reason and intelligence, they undoubtedly subserve a noble purpose. But the quarantine laws all over the world, with some rare exceptions, being the offspring of ignorance and terror, are not only the climax of absurdity, but act as an incubus on commerce, causing ruinous delays in mercantile operations, much distress, ...
— Jack in the Forecastle • John Sherburne Sleeper

... the central point to be the necessity of thrusting Austria out of the confederation. It is proved now that he was sagacious enough also to perceive that such a wrench would not lead to a permanent estrangement, but that Austria, removed once and for all from her incubus-like and dog-in-the-manger position within the federate body, would become, in her own interest and that of European peace, New Germany's ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 4 of 8 • Various

... is a disease of culture; it is archaism in morals. To be so preoccupied with vitality is a symptom of anaemia. When life was really vigorous and young, in Homeric times for instance, no one seemed to fear that it might be squeezed out of existence either by the incubus of matter or by the petrifying blight of intelligence. Life was like the light of day, something to use, or to waste, or to enjoy. It was not a thing to worship; and often the chief luxury of living consisted in dealing death about vigorously. Life indeed was loved, and the beauty and pathos ...
— Winds Of Doctrine - Studies in Contemporary Opinion • George Santayana

... Gothic, and the ordered restraint of Renaissance are so drummed into him during his years of training, and exercise so tyrannical a spell over his imagination that he loses the power of clear and logical thought, and never becomes truly creative. Free of this incubus the engineer has succeeded in being straightforward and sensible, to say the least; subject to it the man with a so-called architectural education is too often ...
— Architecture and Democracy • Claude Fayette Bragdon

... isolation, and the evil effects of railway domination account wholly for San Francisco's slow growth toward the end of the century. For, following the several spasms of development incident to the ages of gold, of grain, and of fruit, and the advent of the railway incubus, California for a time betook herself to rest, which indeed was largely paralysis. Then, too, those who had come first and cleared the ground, laying the foundations of fortunes, were passing away, and their successors seemed more ready to enjoy than to create. But with the ...
— Some Cities and San Francisco and Resurgam • Hubert Howe Bancroft

... gracious; but, nevertheless, his heart did sink somewhat within him, for there had been a hope that a small windfall, coming now so opportunely, might enable him to rid himself at once of that dreadful Sowerby incubus. And then the will went on to declare that Mary, and Gerald, and Blanche, had also, by God's providence, been placed beyond want. And here, looking into the squire's face, one might have thought that his heart fell a little also; for he had not so full a command ...
— Framley Parsonage • Anthony Trollope

... in which Philadelphia will be left, unless speedily supplied with railroad connection in some way or other with this garden spot of the universe. (Laughter.) And besides, sir, this discussion has relieved my mind of a mystery that has weighed upon it like an incubus for years. I could never understand before why there was so much excitement during the last Congress over the acquisition of Alta Vela. I could never understand why it was that some of our ablest ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume VIII (of X) • Various

... country, to seek a dwelling near the factory which employed him; and the Elizabethan Act, insisting upon the allocation of four acres to each new cottage built, was repealed. But for that repeal, factory slums would be garden cities, unless the incubus of this provision had stopped the factory development. The final result of the inclosure movement upon the country was to deprive the public of most of its commons and open spaces, to deprive the agricultural labourer of all right in the soil he tilled, and to ...
— The History of England - A Study in Political Evolution • A. F. Pollard

... until their connection with Spain was severed. Cuba, today, proves Mr. Clay's position. The amiable and intelligent Creoles of that beautiful island are nearly ready for the abolition of slavery and for regulated freedom; but they lie languishing under the hated incubus of Spanish rule, and dare not risk a war of independence, outnumbered as they are by untamed or half-tamed Africans. Mr. Clay's speeches in behalf of the young republics of South America were read by Bolivar at the head of his troops, and justly rendered his name ...
— Famous Americans of Recent Times • James Parton

... is any meaning in the things I have been urging, it is this: that the incubus that lies upon this country is the present monopolistic organization of our industrial life. That is the thing which certain Republicans became "insurgents" in order to throw off. And yet some of them allowed themselves to be so misled as to go into the camp of the third party ...
— The New Freedom - A Call For the Emancipation of the Generous Energies of a People • Woodrow Wilson

... became as rich as the GURNEYS - An incubus then I thought her, So I threw over that rich attorney's Elderly, ugly daughter. The rich attorney my character high Tried vainly to disparage - And now, if you please, I'm ready to try This ...
— Songs of a Savoyard • W. S. Gilbert

... at length was Great Britain to be ruined in actual present truth; and those who asserted that, of a sudden, after a fashion so wholly unexpected as to be divine,—as great fires, great famines, and great wars are called divine,—a mighty hand had been stretched out to take away the remaining incubus of superstition, priestcraft, and bigotry under which England had hitherto been labouring. The proposed disestablishment of the State Church of England was, of course, the subject of ...
— Phineas Redux • Anthony Trollope

... Virginia, Tennessee, and North Carolina. But all these efforts failed and the Southern abolitionists, as we have seen, having "fought the good fight," emigrated to the Northwest about 1830, when Virginia failed to rid herself of the growing "incubus." Just as Birney and Rankin "took up arms" in Ohio there arose a fiercer champion of their cause in the East, where distance from the scene, lack of intimate knowledge of "the system," and a strong popular ...
— Expansion and Conflict • William E. Dodd

... night through tormented myself with the terrible apparition of the Sand-man. I was quite old enough to perceive that the old woman's tale about the Sand-man and his little ones' nest in the half-moon couldn't be altogether true; nevertheless the Sand-man continued to be for me a fearful incubus, and I was always seized with terror—my blood always ran cold, not only when I heard anybody come up the stairs, but when I heard anybody noisily open my father's room door and go in. Often he stayed away for a long ...
— Weird Tales. Vol. I • E. T. A. Hoffmann

... appeals, had been sent over to administer the Government, had stooped to a barefaced violence and tyranny in excess of anything which could be truly charged against the Tory Sir John Colborne. All the old abuses were maintained in full vigour. The incubus of the Clergy Reserves was not removed. Appointments to office were still made from one political body only. The Legislative Council still had the power to paralyze the efforts of the Assembly. The Assembly itself was at present as retrograde as the Upper ...
— The Story of the Upper Canada Rebellion, Volume 1 • John Charles Dent

... be rid of his incubus, he walked somewhat faster than his ordinary, and he was already some way through Kensington Gardens when, in a solitary spot among trees, he found himself confronted by ...
— New Arabian Nights • Robert Louis Stevenson

... concur in stating that their affairs, at this period, presented a most hopeful aspect. They yet displayed a united front, for they had hitherto been almost entirely free from the evils of sectarianism; and now, that they were relieved from the terrible incubus of a ruthless tyranny, their spirits were as buoyant as ever; for though intolerance had thinned their ranks, it had also exhibited their constancy and stimulated their enthusiasm. Their intense attachment to the evangelical cause stood ...
— The Ancient Church - Its History, Doctrine, Worship, and Constitution • W.D. [William Dool] Killen

... are equal," and the wrongs of whose victims have of late been so touchingly and truthfully illustrated by that eminent philanthropist, Mrs. Stowe, to the eternal shame of the upholders of the system, and the fearful incubus of guilt and culpability that will render for ever infamous, if the policy is persisted ...
— An Englishman's Travels in America - His Observations Of Life And Manners In The Free And Slave States • John Benwell

... that is quite indifferent in the sphere of art. Here we also find the confutation of that false conception of sincerity, which maintains that the artist, in his volitional or practical life, should be at one with his dream, or with his incubus. Whether or no he have been so, is a matter that interests his biographer, not his critic; it belongs to history, which separates and qualifies that which art does not ...
— Aesthetic as Science of Expression and General Linguistic • Benedetto Croce

... a Machiavellian twist, Tickle the ears of those smart word-fence blinds, And garbled catch-words win unwary minds, And, maybe, witless votes. Poor London dreams Of—many things most horrible to WEMYSS! The nightmare-incubus of old abuse Propertied privilege, expense profuse Of many lives for one, the dead-hand's grip On the slow generations, the sharp whip Of a compulsory poverty, the gloom Of that high-rated den, miscalled a Home! All these it knows, and many miseries more, And dreams of—Betterment! You'll "never ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Volume 102, March 12, 1892 • Various

... suffered—the tears behind the laughter. I was not in the least deceived or impressed by any of them, but wondered how they managed to hang together and deceive each other. More and more I looked for purely mental pleasures. Mind was everything. I now began to despise my body—I almost hated it as an incubus! Social successes or failures grew to be a matter of complete indifference to me, and social life resolved itself into being solely the means of bringing mind into contact with mind. The question of fashionable environment ceased to exist for me, but the question of how and where to meet with thinking ...
— The Prodigal Returns • Lilian Staveley

... Canadian colleagues, they made an offer to James C. Pope, prime minister of the Island, who happened to be in London, that the sum of $800,000 should be allowed the Island, in order to extinguish the rights of the absentee land-owners, an incubus that had long caused discontent. The Canadian delegates, at first reluctant, were brought to agree to this proposal. But it was declined, and the same fate overtook better financial terms which Tilley offered in 1869. The Island went its way, but soon found that the capital ...
— The Fathers of Confederation - A Chronicle of the Birth of the Dominion • A. H. U. Colquhoun

... can see for yourself that I've had this year to let poor dear old Hill Street! Do you call it the moment for me to have liked to see myself all but cajoled into planking down even such a matter as the very much lower figure of Kitty's horrid incubus?" ...
— The Outcry • Henry James

... fourteenth and fifteenth centuries for the succession to the throne of France, engendered what historians have called "the rivalry between France and England;" and this rivalry, having been admitted as a natural and inevitable fact, became the permanent incubus and, at divers epochs, the scourge of French national existence. Undoubtedly there are, between great and energetic neighbors, different interests and tendencies, which easily become the seeds of jealousy and strife; but there are also, ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume I. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... whither to direct his flight: he dared not dash for the street with this imminent tattered incubus—she was almost upon him—and he frantically made for the kitchen door, only to swerve with a gasp of despair as his foot touched the step, for she was at his heels, and he was sickeningly assured she would cheerfully follow him through the house, shouting that damning refrain ...
— The Flirt • Booth Tarkington

... a nature; he must see to it that there is some reciprocity between him and mankind; that he pays his expenditure in service; that he has not a lion's share in profit and a drone's in labour; and is not a sleeping partner and mere costly incubus on the great mercantile ...
— Lay Morals • Robert Louis Stevenson

... Protestant preachers rolled into one, and invested with an authority undreamed of before, and using that authority to tyrannize over the least thoughts of men. What room, they will exclaim, will men have to advance in the arts and science, not to speak of development of doctrine, if this incubus is to rest upon them, and weigh them down, and terrify them into silence ...
— Donahoe's Magazine, Volume 15, No. 1, January 1886 • Various

... and determined to produce a work of art. To my astonishment, the brutal figure of the carter forced its way into my memory again and again. It (without in the least knowing why) as if the one chance of getting rid of this curious incubus, was to put the persistent image of the man on paper. It was done mechanically, and yet done so well, that I was encouraged to add to the picture. I put in next the poor beaten horse (another good ...
— The Guilty River • Wilkie Collins

... own interests that Mr. Carlyle's marriage had been, the ruinous expense she had entailed upon the family. It struck a complete chill to Isabel's heart, and she became painfully impressed with the incubus she must be to Mr. Carlyle—so far as his pocket was concerned. Lord Mount Severn, with his little son, had paid them a short visit at Christmas and Isabel had asked him, apparently with unconcern, whether Mr. Carlyle had put himself very much out to the way to marry her; whether it ...
— East Lynne • Mrs. Henry Wood

... again. Now I have actually seen one with my own eyes. Demons in women's form rush up the mountain out of the oasis to tempt and torture us in our sleep. What could it have been that the goblin in a white robe and with flowing hair held in its arms? Very likely the stone with which the incubus loads our breast when he torments us. The other one seemed to fly, but I did not see its wings. That side-building must be where the Gaul lives with his ungodly wife, who has ensnared my poor Hermas. I wonder whether ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... freely than they had done for a very long time. Pedro Alvarez walked about with a more self-confident air than usual, and Lawrence sang and laughed and rattled away as had been his custom in former days; even Hilda looked as if she had been relieved of an incubus which had depressed her spirits. She said nothing; she did not even mention the name of Father Mendez, but if by chance she heard it, she gave a slight shudder, while the frown which grew on her brow showed ...
— Ronald Morton, or the Fire Ships - A Story of the Last Naval War • W.H.G. Kingston

... the prudential considerations against which Shaftesbury and a few others protested weighed like an incubus both upon religion and on morals. 'Oh Happiness! our being's end and aim,'[285] was the seldom failing refrain, echoed in sermons and essays, in theological treatises and ethical studies. And though the ...
— The English Church in the Eighteenth Century • Charles J. Abbey and John H. Overton

... which undermined the empire. Slavery proved at Rome a monstrous curse, destroying all manliness of character, creating contempt of honest labor, making men timorous yet cruel, idle, frivolous, weak, dependent, powerless. The empire might have lasted centuries longer but for this incubus, the standing disgrace of the Pagan world. Paganism never recognized what is most noble and glorious in man; never recognized his equality, his common brotherhood, his natural rights. It had no compunction, ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume III • John Lord

... like little rock-islands studding the surface of an ocean, and telling of the sunken continent below: this monstrous thousand odd pounds he had been fool enough to borrow. Never would he be able to pay off such a sum, never again be free from the incubus of debt. Meanwhile, not the ground he stood on, not the roof over his head could actually be called his own. He had also been too pushed for money, at the time, to take Ocock's ...
— Australia Felix • Henry Handel Richardson

... many ways and terribly destructive. It promotes war. It makes the individual helpless, and crushes him with a sense of his unimportance. It abets the injustice of capitalism. It excludes citizens from any participation in foreign affairs. We must indeed not let this incubus of state overwhelm us. We must keep it in its proper place, even in performing its necessary functions, such as preserving public health. It is better to take some risk, even in such matters, than to override too much the individual's personal rights. All the functions of the ...
— The Psychology of Nations - A Contribution to the Philosophy of History • G.E. Partridge

... intrude themselves in spite of his efforts to avoid them. It is an awful thing to allow the mind to be thus contaminated; and many a man would give the world, if he possessed it, to be free from the horrible incubus of a ...
— Plain Facts for Old and Young • John Harvey Kellogg

... a point of repose, quicken his animal perception; he stands alone and must think for himself—and so far good. But while discarding much that seems inconsiderable before such wide and splendid horizons, this nomad loads himself with the incubus of dream-states; while standing alone, he grows into a ferocious brigand. Poets call him romantic, but politicians are puzzled what to do with a being who to a senile mysticism joins the peevish ...
— Fountains In The Sand - Rambles Among The Oases Of Tunisia • Norman Douglas

... what lay behind the scene which I had just beheld. In similar fashion in the days of Edward I. and Simon De Montfort, the Commons of England, then struggling up, had wrestled in the narrow Chapter House. And so they had fought in the Lancastrian time; and after the Tudor incubus had been lifted off. So under the Stuarts had the wrangling proceeded from which came at length the "Petition of Right." Substituting the doublet and the steeple hat for their modern equivalents, the spectacle of the Long Parliament must have ...
— The Last Leaf - Observations, during Seventy-Five Years, of Men and Events in America - and Europe • James Kendall Hosmer

... continues so to his dying day. Mace, which is so comfortable to the stomach in all kind of meats, turns in his hand to mortal poison. This raven pecks not out men's eyes as others do; all his spite is at their shoulders, and you were better to have the nightmare ride you than this incubus. When any of the furies of hell die, this Cacodeemon hath the reversion of his place. The city is (by the custom) to feed him with good meat, as they send dead horses to their hounds, only to keep them both in good ...
— Character Writings of the 17th Century • Various

... must be ascribed to the incubus of Slavery upon the intellect, which has repressed this as it has all other healthy growths in the South. Slavery seems to benumb all the faculties except the passions. The fact that the mountaineers had but few or no slaves, does not seem ...
— Andersonville, complete • John McElroy

... charm that lured us on board the "Balaklava," and now "nothing to do," was with us like the Bottle-Imp, an incubus, still crying out: "You may yet exchange me for a smaller coin, if such there be!" "Nothing to do," is an imposture. Something to do is the very life of life, the beginning and end of being. "Picton," said I, "one thing we must do, ...
— Acadia - or, A Month with the Blue Noses • Frederic S. Cozzens

... are on my soul, And on my conscience. I've an incubus: My one distinction, and a parlous toll To glory; but hope lives ...
— The Man Against the Sky • Edwin Arlington Robinson

... Anglo-Saxon spirit will suffer itself to be permanently over-ridden (any more than it has allowed itself to be kept in permanent subjection in England), even in the large cities where the Anglo-Saxon voter is in a small minority. Ultimately it will throw off the incubus. In the meanwhile it is unjust that Englishmen or other Europeans should accept as evidence of native American frailty instances of municipal abuses and of corrupt methods in a city like New York, where it has not been ...
— The Twentieth Century American - Being a Comparative Study of the Peoples of the Two Great - Anglo-Saxon Nations • H. Perry Robinson

... I thought; yet it would ease me of a great weight if she would. This fortune, suddenly thrown into my lap, sits like an incubus upon me, Mr. Raymond. When the will was read to-day which makes me possessor of so much wealth, I could not but feel that a heavy, blinding pall had settled upon me, spotted with blood and woven of horrors. Ah, how ...
— The Leavenworth Case • Anna Katharine Green

... with the succession of pairs of young men, whose mission seemed to be to plague their master consciously, and to plague him unconsciously. Once or twice Mr. Gibson had declined taking a fresh pupil, in the hopes of shaking himself free from the incubus, but his reputation as a clever surgeon had spread so rapidly that fees which he had thought prohibitory, were willingly paid, in order that the young man might make a start in life, with the prestige of having been a pupil of Gibson of Hollingford. But as Molly ...
— Wives and Daughters • Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

... inside. Third, this blade here has a tiny touch of blood at the point, but there is no wound on Mr Todhunter. Mr Glass took that wound away with him, dead or alive. Add to all this primary probability. It is much more likely that the blackmailed person would try to kill his incubus, rather than that the blackmailer would try to kill the goose that lays his golden egg. There, I think, we have ...
— The Wisdom of Father Brown • G. K. Chesterton

... "calling for a General Convention of the Confederate States to depose him and set up a military Dictator in his place." The Mercury retorted that, as to the plot against "our Moses," there was no evidence of its existence except the Courier's assertion. Nevertheless, it considered Davis "an incubus to the cause." The controversy between the Mercury and the Courier at Charleston was paralleled at Richmond by the constant bickering between the government organ, the Enquirer, and the Examiner, ...
— The Day of the Confederacy - A Chronicle of the Embattled South, Volume 30 In The - Chronicles Of America Series • Nathaniel W. Stephenson

... haunts of that part of Endbury known as the "Black Hole." She thought, as so many women have thought, that there must be something wrong in a system that made her husband spend all his strength laboring to make money so much of which was paid, in one form or another, to this black incubus. She thought, as so many other women have thought, that there must be something wrong with a system of life that meant that, with rare exceptions, such help was all that could be coaxed into doing housework; but Lydia, unlike the other women she knew, did ...
— The Squirrel-Cage • Dorothy Canfield

... bondage ye are in, and how do ye groan till you are redeemed from it! Ye are bond-slaves, but not willingly, as man is; but how will you ever be turned to nobler purpose? How is this vast, this solid establishment of error, the incubus of many thousand years, ever to have an end? You yourselves, dear ones, will come to nought first. Anyhow, the public way is no place for me this evening. They'll soon be back from their ...
— Callista • John Henry Cardinal Newman

... cut out of a living man's face and stuck in the picture. Instead of admiration, the portrait inspired a painful feeling of oppression; the beholder was seized with a sort of waking nightmare, weighing upon and overwhelming him like a moral and mysterious incubus. ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine - Volume 62, No. 384, October 1847 • Various

... thousand a year to the Nabob of Arcot: a tribute never due, or pretended to be due, to him, even when he appeared to be something; a tribute, as things now stand, not to a real potentate, but to a shadow, a dream, an incubus of oppression. After the Company has accepted in subsidy, in grant of territory, in remission of rent, as a compensation for their own protection, at least two hundred thousand pound a year, without discounting a shilling for that receipt, the ministers condemn this harassed nation ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. III. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... thought. That is the greatest of our needs, for thought is the lightning-conductor between the heaven- world and earth. We want fearless advocates who will not be turned aside from their course by laughter or by threats. Why is it that the spirit of daring, imaginative enquiry is so dead here? An incubus of spiritual fear seems to beset men women so that they think, if they turn from the beaten track seeking the true, they shall meet, not the divine with outstretched hands, but a demon; that the reward for their search will ...
— AE in the Irish Theosophist • George William Russell

... the last sentence, and in my terrible dream, rescue and safety depended upon my getting to the end of the text. I tried again and again, always to be driven back in despair before the crucial words were uttered. At last, with a desperate effort, I seemed to shake off the incubus which was weighing me down, and I finished the words triumphantly, and so loud that I had positively wakened myself up by shouting them out. With returning memory I knew this had happened, and hearing ...
— Seen and Unseen • E. Katharine Bates

... of the matter which fills him. Let the preacher consider this, and be persuaded of it,—and it will do much to relieve him from the distress which attends the loss of self-possession, which distorts every feature with agony, and distils in sweat from his forehead. It will do much to destroy that incubus, which sits upon every faculty of the soul, and palsies every power, and fastens down the helpless sufferer to the very evil from ...
— Hints on Extemporaneous Preaching • Henry Ware

... further experiments upset the conclusion drawn in 1856. This would account for the satisfaction expressed in the following year at the discovery of another method, on which Darwin wrote to Sir J.D. Hooker: "The distribution of fresh-water molluscs has been a horrid incubus to me, but I think I know my way now. When first hatched they are very active, and I have had thirty or forty crawl on a dead duck's foot; and they cannot be jerked off, and will live fifteen or even twenty-four hours out of water" ("Life and ...
— More Letters of Charles Darwin - Volume I (of II) • Charles Darwin

... had resorted to when going about in his own country, where a price was set on his head; ever labouring to infuse fresh valour into his beaten, disheartened followers. That the governing party had any right to be in power, or possessed any virtue of any kind, or were, in fact, anything but an incubus and a curse to the Banda Oriental, she would not for one moment admit. To her mind her country always appeared like Andromeda bound on her rock and left weeping and desolate to be a prey to the abhorred Colorado monster; while ever to the deliverance of this ...
— The Purple Land • W. H. Hudson

... Elder, and a Trustee, and, after much anxiety, and the utmost straining of his ability to raise and to contribute funds towards the completion of their house of worship, he was just beginning to enjoy the comfort of seeing the debt, which had hung as an incubus over it for years, wiped out, when this new call was made upon him. A few young people proposed to go out to the assistance of the feeble church, upon the condition that Mr. Charless and Mr. Keith would go with them —wisely concluding that the attempt to sustain it without some such ...
— A Biographical Sketch of the Life and Character of Joseph Charless - In a Series of Letters to his Grandchildren • Charlotte Taylor Blow Charless

... and most cruel to those whom it is thought to shelter. Meantime the South feels still the intolerable weight of that Constitution, the intolerable sting of the demand of her northern brothers, that she shall be asked to endure, in the name of this incubus, this body of the law, the continuous burglarizing of her honor and her prosperity—the burglarizing of ...
— The Law of the Land • Emerson Hough

... the incubus of Grizzle's meal-pock was lifted from his bosom. The shame was, if shame was any, that they should have been living in such a house while the thing was done. When the house was sold, let people say what they would! In proportion ...
— Warlock o' Glenwarlock • George MacDonald

... certain "maid of the night," who appeared to men in sleep and roused without satisfying their passions. (Jastrow, Religion of Babylonia, p. 262.) This succubus was the Assyrian Liler, connected with the Hebrew Lilith. There was a corresponding incubus, "the little night man," who had nocturnal intercourse with women. (Cf. Ploss, Das Weib, 7th ed., pp. 521 et seq.) The succubus and the incubus (the latter being more common) were adopted by Christendom; ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 1 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... incubus, came around and was soppy to mother as usual yesterday—the same old business—I might be studying in Paris, now, instead of teaching drawing to stupid little girls, if I hadn't 'formed' what she will call 'that unfortunate attachment.' Not that I minded, really, though I was angry enough to ...
— Young People's Pride • Stephen Vincent Benet

... his enterprise rendered a companion altogether undesirable,—and though on one occasion he encountered a gentleman-novelist with a note-book, who was exceedingly anxious to fraternize with him and discover whither he vas bound, he succeeded in shaking off this would-be incubus at Mosul, by taking him to a wonderful old library in that city where there were a number of French translations of Turkish and Syriac romances. Here the gentleman- novelist straightway ascended to the seventh ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... the demonic with the animal nature, and outwitted the demons. 'The devil is an ass.' There is a lower depth than the animal nature; and even swine feel uncomfortable when the demon is in them, and in their panic rush anywhere to get rid of the incubus, and, before they know, find themselves struggling in the lake. 'Which things ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - St. Mark • Alexander Maclaren

... the close of his pagedom, and the assumption of the second degree in chivalry, that of squire. He ever longed for the day when he should be able to fulfil his promise to his poor stricken father, who, albeit somewhat relieved of his incubus, since the night when father and son watched together, was not yet quite free from his ghostly visitant; moderns would say ...
— The House of Walderne - A Tale of the Cloister and the Forest in the Days of the Barons' Wars • A. D. Crake

... could see that my rubber boots had grown so heavy because I was carrying so much of the soil of Northern France. It looked as if I had gout in both feet—the over- bandaged, stage type of gout—which were encased in large mud poultices. I tried to stamp off the incubus, but it would not go. I tried scraping one foot on the other, and what I scraped off seemed to reattach itself as fast ...
— My Year of the War • Frederick Palmer

... some age unguessed of us May lift Its blinding incubus, And see, and own: "It grieves me I did thus ...
— Moments of Vision • Thomas Hardy

... silent for a while, trying to think. The parson was like an incubus upon him, which he was totally unable to shake off. He knew neither how to resist nor how to give way. Misty ideas got into his head of escaping to his bed-room and blowing his own brains out. Different schemes of retaliation ...
— The Kellys and the O'Kellys • Anthony Trollope

... which came so near making a wreck of you, my precious one, as it has wrecked thousands of pure and gentle souls. I foresee that this war is destined, by mere force of circumstances, to rid the Republic of that deadly incubus. Rosa, are you not willing to give me up for the safety of the country, and the freedom ...
— A Romance of the Republic • Lydia Maria Francis Child

... that a great portion of the human race, especially in the big polyglot empires and the smaller states of Europe, are groaning under the incubus of the language difficulty, and have to spend years on the study of mere words before they can fit themselves for an active career, then the abolition of this heavy handicap on due preparation for each man's proper business in life will liberate much time for more profitable studies. ...
— International Language - Past, Present and Future: With Specimens of Esperanto and Grammar • Walter J. Clark

... kind letter of welcome. My long rest has completely restored me. As my doctor told me, I was sound, wind and limb, and had merely worn myself out. I am not going to do that again, and you see that I have got rid of the School Board. It was an awful incubus! ...
— The Life and Letters of Thomas Henry Huxley Volume 2 • Leonard Huxley

... throughout the country. Gondremark has thus some of the clumsier characters of the self-made man, combined with an inordinate, almost a besotted, pride of intellect and birth. Heavy, bilious, selfish, inornate, he sits upon this court and country like an incubus. ...
— Prince Otto • Robert Louis Stevenson

... was a strike; the hands in the neighbourhood felt themselves aggrieved by the masters, and refused to work: Mr. Bronte thought that they had been unjustly and unfairly treated, and he assisted them by all the means in his power to "keep the wolf from their doors," and avoid the incubus of debt. Several of the more influential inhabitants of Haworth and the neighbourhood were mill-owners; they remonstrated pretty sharply with him, but he believed that his conduct was ...
— The Life of Charlotte Bronte - Volume 1 • Elizabeth Gaskell

... whippoorwill, And straightway Sorrow shot his swiftest dart. I know not why, but it has chilled my heart Like some dread thing of evil. All night long My nerves were shaken, and my pulse stood still, And waited for a terror yet to come To strike harsh discords through my life's sweet song. Sleep came—an incubus that filled the sum Of wretchedness with dreams so wild and chill The sweat oozed from me like great drops of gall; An evil spirit kept my mind in thrall, And rolled my body up like a poor scroll On which is written curses that the soul Shrinks ...
— Hesperus - and Other Poems and Lyrics • Charles Sangster

... have left little beyond this aggravating record of their existence. It is one which adds something to the cost of every particle of food consumed by the people, every shred of clothing worn by them. Additions to this incubus of debt little disturb the rules when blithely or bitterly engaging in new wars, but every such addition adds to the burdens of taxation laid on the shoulders of the groaning citizens, and is sure to deepen the harvest of retribution when the time ...
— A History of The Nations and Empires Involved and a Study - of the Events Culminating in The Great Conflict • Logan Marshall

... for many long years that the German people would themselves throw off the incubus of the military Government which was crushing out their individuality and making their country an object of distrust and fear to all those interested in the progress of civilisation; but if you will not rid yourselves of the monster which has dishonoured and disgraced you before the world, then, ...
— Plain Words From America • Douglas W. Johnson

... may be explained that these words signify, respectively, "go on," "stop," "straight ahead," "to the right," and "to the left." The words mano and silla mean really "hand" and "saddle"; I have been told that they are linguistic survivals of the days when women, rode on pillions and the fair incubus indicated that she wished to turn either to the side of her right hand or to the ...
— A Woman's Impression of the Philippines • Mary Helen Fee

... became as rich as the Gurneys— An incubus then I thought her, So I threw over that rich attorney's Elderly, ugly daughter. The rich attorney my character high Tried vainly to disparage— And now, if you please, I'm ready to try This ...
— Bab Ballads and Savoy Songs • W. S. Gilbert

... this stamp. All diligent students of early Christian history must have derived the greatest advantage on special points from the conscientious research, and frequently also from the acute analysis, even of writers of the most extreme school. But it is high time that the incubus of fascinating speculations should be shaken off, and that Englishmen should learn to exercise their judicial faculty independently. Any one who will take the pains to read Irenaeus through carefully, endeavouring to enter into ...
— Essays on "Supernatural Religion" • Joseph B. Lightfoot

... it was to Snowdon that Vortigern retired from the fury of his own subjects, caused by the favour which he showed to the detested Saxons. It was there that he called to his counsels Merlin, said to be begotten on a hag by an incubus, but who was in reality the son of a Roman consul by a British woman. It was in Snowdon that he built the castle, which he fondly deemed would prove impregnable, but which his enemies destroyed by flinging wild-fire over its ...
— Wild Wales - Its People, Language and Scenery • George Borrow

... prevented me. That was odd. Could there have been an earthquake, and had some rock rolled over upon me—a most unlikely thing, yet what else could it be? I wriggled my back in order to discover, if I could, the nature of the incubus. Instantly there recommenced that abominable sound, close to my ear, which had so angered me before; now that my brain was once more in working order I was able to listen with understanding. The sound was the growling of some great beast; ...
— Chatterbox, 1906 • Various

... "supernatural," "miraculous." It is true, these churches may practically put such goods out of sight; even then, men will not be attracted beyond the expression of a condescending tolerance; and while admitting, as they will, that the church is earnestly endeavoring to get rid of its ancient incubus of theology, free its hands and take hold of the plow handle of progress, ready, if needs be, to drive a furrow deep enough to bury all memories of primitive faith, yet will they turn away from that kind of a church and that sort of Christianity, with the feeling that all this ...
— Christ, Christianity and the Bible • I. M. Haldeman

... she said. "Woman in time of peace may add a certain welcome pleasantness to life. In time of war she is nothing but a helpless incubus." ...
— The Dop Doctor • Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

... Mr. Saunderson, began to look frightened. But Dr. Cairn, shaking off the incubus which had descended upon him, forced a laugh, and clapping his hand upon Robert's ...
— Brood of the Witch-Queen • Sax Rohmer

... not a misnomer. Japan appears to me—and I may claim to have studied the matter with some little attention—to have no financial burdens, if burdens be taken to mean something that is inconveniently felt, that is difficult to carry. There is here no people weighed down under the crushing incubus of debt. There is a springiness and alertness, a go-ahead energy about the nation—symptoms not usually connected with the carrying of burdens. Japan seems to me to be in somewhat the same position in regard to finance ...
— The Empire of the East • H. B. Montgomery

... in a New England town, Douglass began the life of a freeman, from which, relieved now of the incubus of slavery, he soon emerged into the career for which, in the providence of God, he seemed by his multiform experience to have been especially fitted. He did not find himself, even in Massachusetts, quite beyond the influence of slavery. While before ...
— Frederick Douglass - A Biography • Charles Waddell Chesnutt

... has been accepted, almost without question, in a civilisation built up on the recognition of male values and male standards of opinion. Thus the institutions, habits, prejudices, and superstitions of the patriarchal authority rest like an incubus upon us. The women of to-day carry the dead load upon their backs, and literally stagger beneath the accumulating burden ...
— The Position of Woman in Primitive Society - A Study of the Matriarchy • C. Gasquoine Hartley

... and can drain three nurses without taking on flesh. The second question is whether the demon who copulates with the mother or the man whose semen has been taken is the father of the child. To which Saint Thomas answers, with more or less subtle arguments, that the real father is not the incubus but the man." ...
— La-bas • J. K. Huysmans

... dark, I had not touched food since starting, nor had I wetted my lips. My thirst was now intolerable. The travelling rule, about keeping on, was an ugly incubus. Samson would go his own ways - he had sense enough for that - but how, when, where, was I to quench my thirst? Oh! for the tip of Lazarus' finger - or for choice, a bottle of Bass - to cool my tongue! Then too, whither would the mustang stray in the ...
— Tracks of a Rolling Stone • Henry J. Coke

... was that the liquor would, perhaps, brace him up a little, and to that end he filled his tumbler well up and did not refuse a second invitation. The result answered his expectations. In a very few moments he began to feel much more at ease. The incubus upon his faculties seemed lifted. His muscles relaxed. He recovered the free control of his tongue and his eyes. Whereas he had previously been only conscious of Mrs. Edwards, and but vaguely of the room in which they were and its other ...
— The Duke of Stockbridge • Edward Bellamy

... by him and Virchow (tenth yearly part, X. 1878, p. 66) as follows:—"At the Munich meeting of naturalists, Virchow by a few weighty words cleared the atmosphere, which was heavy and stifling under the pressure of the incubus called Descent, and once more freed science from that nightmare which it has so long—in many opinions so much too long—allowed to weigh upon it; freed it, let us hope, once and for ever. The forecasts of this storm were discernible many years since, ...
— Freedom in Science and Teaching. - from the German of Ernst Haeckel • Ernst Haeckel

... tone, the instinctive resentment (the colonel thought) of the born aristocrat toward the upstart who had pushed his way above those no longer strong enough to resist. It did not occur to him that her feeling might rest upon any personal ground. It was inevitable that, with the incubus of slavery removed, society should readjust itself in due time upon a democratic basis, and that poor white men, first, and black men next, should reach a level representing the true measure of their talents and their ambition. But it was perhaps equally inevitable ...
— The Colonel's Dream • Charles W. Chesnutt

... part, was not very well content. She could hardly avoid knowing that she was looked on as an incubus, and she saw that her father, as she called him, dreaded to be questioned as to their relationship. She lived a simple life; rode and played tennis with young Belgians of her own age; read, worked, went to such dances and entertainments as were given in ...
— The Ashiel mystery - A Detective Story • Mrs. Charles Bryce

... of a thousand winters seemed curdling through my blood. The bell rung—once, twice—no answer. I would have leaped out of the carriage—I would have forced an entrance, but I was unable to move. A man fettered and spell-bound by an incubus, is less helpless than I was. At last, an old female I ...
— Pelham, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... incubus of the Americans. They could not fight the war without it, but they had never succeeded in mastering the difficulties of maintaining and strengthening it. The system of a standing army was of course not to be thought of, and the uncertain recruits who took its place were mostly ...
— George Washington • William Roscoe Thayer

... higher and holier power than conscience of wrong-doing wrought upon me in those moments. Oh, I thought, the very cotton which fills this comforter, was cultivated by the hand of a slave. And shall I complain at being nearly smothered by it, when I remember what an incubus slavery is to the poor creature who gathered this cotton, and what an incubus it is to our unhappy land? I was delivered at last from my load, because my tormentors were tired of their sport. Would that there were some prospect ...
— The Sable Cloud - A Southern Tale With Northern Comments (1861) • Nehemiah Adams

... like the dashing rides to Norton Bury. Above all, I like coming back. The minute I begin to climb Enderley Hill, the tan-yard, and all belonging to it, drops off like an incubus, and I wake into free, beautiful life. Now, Phineas, confess; is not this common a lovely ...
— John Halifax, Gentleman • Dinah Maria Mulock Craik

... power, to crush the constitutional liberties of its subjects; and by refusing, throughout this period, to pay a single drachma of its public debt, it has stamped itself either hopelessly bankrupt or scandalously fraudulent. The people, meanwhile, crushed by the incubus of a dishonest and extravagant foreign rule, remain in nearly the situation they held on the first establishment of their kingdom. In a word, Greece was thirty years ago transferred from one despotism to another. The Bavarian rule was no appreciable ...
— Mosaics of Grecian History • Marcius Willson and Robert Pierpont Willson

... from jeopardy to joy! And he has so much of joy! Not only has he been able to shake from his shoulders that awful incubus—and ever-present ward—but he can be sure that the absent ward is so well-off with regard to this word's goods, that he need never give her so much as a passing thought—dragged, torn as that thought would be from ...
— A Little Rebel - A Novel • Margaret Wolfe Hungerford

... Guard. The leaders at the Hotel de Ville were taken captive. The Palais Bourbon was cleared, and the Deputies were reconvened in their assembly hall. Encouraged by this success, the government resolved to rid itself of the incubus of the national workshops, after a variety of schemes with this purpose in view had been brought forward in the Assembly. The government cut the Gordian knot by a violent stroke. On June 21, an edict was issued that all beneficiaries of the public workshops between the ages of seventeen and ...
— A History of the Nineteenth Century, Year by Year - Volume Two (of Three) • Edwin Emerson

... on this curious subject, the Essay on Fairies, in the "Border Minstrelsy," vol. ii, under the fourth head; also Jackson on Unbelief, p. 175. Chaucer calls Pluto the "King of Faerie"; and Dunbar names him, "Pluto, that elrich incubus." If he was not actually the devil, he must be considered as the "prince of the power of the air." The most curious instance of these surviving classical superstitions is that of the Germans, concerning ...
— Marmion • Sir Walter Scott

... chance of distraction. This girl's spontaneous gaiety, which I found at first displeasing, was what I wanted to help me to shake off the gloomy incubus of thought oppressing me. It was hardly within the proprieties to call upon her at such an hour, but it could not matter very much, when the girl's own ideas were so unconventional. She had independent means, and ...
— The Crack of Doom • Robert Cromie

... Warthy, with orders to report to the king as to his health. In this officer Bourbon saw nothing more or less than a spy, and in the king's promises nothing but vain words dependent as they were upon the issue of a lawsuit which still remained an incubus upon him. He had no answer for words but words; he undertook the engagements demanded of him by the king without considering them binding; and he remained ill at Moulins, waiting till events should summon him to take action with his ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume IV. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... say, Miss Wickfield,' pursued Traddles, at once with great delicacy and with great earnestness, 'that in your absence Mr. Wickfield has considerably improved. Relieved of the incubus that had fastened upon him for so long a time, and of the dreadful apprehensions under which he had lived, he is hardly the same person. At times, even his impaired power of concentrating his memory and attention on particular points of business, ...
— David Copperfield • Charles Dickens

... you shall command me always. Give me your IOU—that will be quite sufficient, and pay the money back when it is quite convenient.' Disinterested, most praiseworthy man! He left me, impressed with his benevolence, and with my spirit at rest. With the dismissal of my incubus, my appetite was restored. I partook of a hearty dinner, and returned home, happy as a boy again. At the end of a week, I was enabled to repay my benefactor; but, at the end of a fortnight; I was ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 54, No. 335, September 1843 • Various

... silent for a long time. Finally he appeared to throw off the incubus, and, with a return of his ordinary ...
— The Second Deluge • Garrett P. Serviss

... *where* There walketh now the limitour himself, In undermeles* and in morrowings**, *evenings **mornings And saith his matins and his holy things, As he goes in his limitatioun.* *begging district Women may now go safely up and down, In every bush, and under every tree; There is none other incubus but he; And he will do ...
— The Canterbury Tales and Other Poems • Geoffrey Chaucer

... said, "I will give three hundred pesos, though I swear by God, I have not so much money in the world; but I will borrow it to be rid of such an incubus." ...
— The History Of The Conquest Of Peru • William H. Prescott

... him—perhaps (he bitterly conjectures) for fear of offending the Vatican. Sirocco, now and again, blows furiously at his back, but never splits the sheeting. Rain often soaks it, never rots it. There is no help for him. He stands a mock to the pious, a shame and incubus to the emancipated; received, yet hushed up; exalted, yet made a fool of; taken and left; a monument ...
— And Even Now - Essays • Max Beerbohm

... she was very ill constituted for that office. The harshness of it was detestable to her, and then there was no reason whatever why she should sacrifice her domestic comfort for the Lovels. The thing had grown upon them, till the Lovels had become an incubus to her. Personally, she liked Lady Anna, but she was unable to treat Lady Anna as she would treat any other girl that she liked. She had told the Serjeant more than once that she could not endure it much longer. And the Serjeant did not like it better than did his wife. It ...
— Lady Anna • Anthony Trollope

... vaguely her heart began to throb once more. She stirred. She moaned, still for the moment powerless to cast off wholly the enshrouding incubus ...
— Darkness and Dawn • George Allan England

... the Greek ker ([Greek: ker]) and the Teutonic 'nightmare,' French cauchemar (mara, an incubus, or succuba), belong in this class of ...
— Introduction to the History of Religions - Handbooks on the History of Religions, Volume IV • Crawford Howell Toy

... on his way, wondering at the strange contrasts of the Middle Ages. How was it that people who could devise so beautiful a service believed in witchcraft, demoniacal possession and obsession, in the incubus and succubus, and in the Sabbath an in many other horrible absurdities? It seemed astonishing that anybody could even pretend to credit such monstrous tales, but there could be no doubt that the dread of old women who rode on ...
— The Hill of Dreams • Arthur Machen

... his arrival he began to complain that he felt worse. It was then that he became the ranch's incubus, its harpy, its Old Man of the Sea. He shut himself in his room like some venomous kobold or flibbertigibbet, whining, complaining, cursing, accusing. The keynote of his plaint was that he had been inveigled into a gehenna against his will; that he was dying of ...
— Heart of the West • O. Henry

... Heraclian, by one decisive victory, has gained, by the favour of—of Heaven, the imperial purple; and a new era opens for the world. Let the conqueror of Rome balance his account with that Byzantine court, so long the incubus of our Trans-Mediterranean wealth and civilisation; and let a free, independent, and united Africa rally round the palaces and docks of Alexandria, and find there its natural centre of polity ...
— Hypatia - or, New Foes with an Old Face • Charles Kingsley

... engrossing subject, on the breaking of the day with which our history begins—this eventful Hogmanay. As the evening approached, every one trembled; but the inspiration of incipient drams had had the effect of so far throwing off the incubus as to enable some of the inhabitants, and, in particular, those we have mentioned, to go about the forms of the festival with decent freedom; while the guysers and "reekers," after the manner of buoyant youth, had been flirting with their terrors, and singing and blowing to ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland Volume 17 • Alexander Leighton

... had seen by the camp fire, and especially the picture of those three stark, bloody forms that lay stretched upon the earth, seemingly watching every movement he made, followed and weighed him down like some smothering incubus. Then he saw, more vividly than ever before, the mountainous task ahead. With no horse, and the hundreds of miles of mountain and prairie, with the dangers besetting him on every hand, what possible hope ...
— Through Apache Lands • R. H. Jayne

... I never despaired of Ireland; I do not, I will not, I cannot, despair of my beloved country. She has, in my view, obtained freedom of conscience for others, as well as for herself. She has shaken off the incubus of tithes while silly legislation was dealing out its folly and its falsehoods. She can, and she will, obtain for herself justice and constitutional freedom; and although she may sigh at British neglect and ingratitude, there is no sound of despair in that sigh, nor any want of moral energy ...
— The Complete Works of Whittier - The Standard Library Edition with a linked Index • John Greenleaf Whittier

... line is clear. Far from me to propose to bridge it over—that the pestered people be pushed across. No! I would save them from further fatigue. I would come to their relief, and would lift from their shoulders this incubus of Art. ...
— The Gentle Art of Making Enemies • James McNeill Whistler

... Pride and glowing Anger. And with these also was yet another emotion, and one that he had never known till now, whose name is Doubt; doubt of himself and of his future—that deadly foe to achievement and success—that ghoul-like incubus which, once it fastens on a man, seldom leaves him until courage, and hope, and confidence are dead, and nothing remains but a ...
— The Amateur Gentleman • Jeffery Farnol et al

... "it's very good of you, but I daren't encroach further on my hours of leisure. Skeffington's Sloe Gin has already become an incubus." ...
— Not George Washington - An Autobiographical Novel • P. G. Wodehouse

... spirit to resent, he, with his fellows, had endured the greatest evils of slavery. With the curse of free labour on the land, there had been no incentive for toil, no hire for the labourer. Like an incubus the system had lain over them, stifling all energy, checking all progress, retarding all prosperity save the prosperity of the great land-owners. Then the soil had changed hands, and where the plough had broken the earth, the seeds of a democracy had germinated ...
— The Miller Of Old Church • Ellen Glasgow

... ears, not without immense trouble and grief to ourselves, that in some parts of Higher Germany ... very many persons of both sexes, deviating from the Catholic faith, abuse themselves with the demons, Incubus and Succubus; and by incantations, charms, conjurations, and other wicked superstitions, by criminal acts and offences have caused the offspring of women and of the lower animals, the fruits of the earth, the grape, ...
— The Superstitions of Witchcraft • Howard Williams

... her head; Mark had broken his ankle. As this was his fourth offense, Miranda inquired how many bones there were in the human body, "so 't they'd know when Mark got through breakin' 'em." The time for paying the interest on the mortgage, that incubus that had crushed all the joy out of the Randall household, had come and gone, and there was no possibility, for the first time in fourteen years, of paying the required forty-eight dollars. The only bright spot in the ...
— Rebecca of Sunnybrook Farm • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... night when the contract was signed I have felt under an incubus, and since he appeared here yesterday, punctual to the appointed hour, I have felt as if I had a veritable "old man of the sea" upon my shoulders. He flies up stairs and along the corridors as noiselessly as a cat, and already knows where I keep all my things. Nothing surprises ...
— Unbeaten Tracks in Japan • Isabella L. Bird

... operate upon the ears of Irishmen at large? He is told that under the fear of the Landleague his rent is to be reduced to an extent which is left to his imagination; and then, that he is to be freed altogether from the incubus of a landlord! He is, in fact, made to understand that his cherished Landleague has become all-powerful. And yet he hears that odious men, whom he recognises only as tyrants, are filling the jails through the country ...
— The Landleaguers • Anthony Trollope

... self-governing country. The proposition is too elementary for discussion that the white man when confronted with a sufficient number of Negroes to create in his mind a sense of political unrest or danger either alters his form of government in order to be rid of the incubus or destroys the political strength of the Negro by force, by evasion, or by ...
— Introduction to the Science of Sociology • Robert E. Park

... which I received the full benefit of the vision. In Rome, I have known some blessed, quiet days, when I could yield myself to be soothed and instructed by the great thoughts and memories of the place. But those days are swiftly passing. Soon I must begin to exert myself, for there is this incubus of the future, and none to help me, if I am not prudent to face it. So ridiculous, too, this mortal ...
— Memoirs of Margaret Fuller Ossoli, Vol. II • Margaret Fuller Ossoli

... Herzegovina, with its attendant incubus of half a million of debt, renders it certain that one of two results must inevitably ensue: either Turkey will be compelled to surrender that province, and possibly Bosnia also, or she will sustain ...
— Herzegovina - Or, Omer Pacha and the Christian Rebels • George Arbuthnot

... about so desirable a result, and the subject will doubtless engage in the future, as it has done in the past, the anxious consideration and wise action of the Canadian Government, who have a right to appeal to the President of the United States and his advisers, to relieve them from the incubus of the presence in our territories of so many of the wards of that Government, and who are without the means or opportunities of obtaining a ...
— The Treaties of Canada with The Indians of Manitoba - and the North-West Territories • Alexander Morris

... sufficient perseverance excited to achieve a first success, there arises a revulsion of feeling affecting the whole nature. They no longer find themselves incompetent; they, too, can do something. And gradually as success follows success, the incubus of despair disappears, and they attack the difficulties of their other studies with a ...
— Essays on Education and Kindred Subjects - Everyman's Library • Herbert Spencer

... could, it must be confessed, to make everybody around him happy, while a load of sorrow, which felt as big as a bag of shrapnel or a kedge anchor, lay at his own heart. He now determined to get rid of this incubus, to leave it, or creep out from under it somehow. During all these months he had tried, and tried hard, to forget his lost love Gerty, but all in vain. Trying to forget her made matters infinitely worse, so now he meant to indulge himself in the sweet belief that she ...
— As We Sweep Through The Deep • Gordon Stables

... principles to finance. The cry for parliamentary reform died out: neither Whigs nor Tories really cared for it; and the 'glorious spirit of improvement' showed itself in an energy which had little political application. The nobility was not an incubus suppressing individual energy and confronted by the state, but was itself the state; and its individual members were often leaders in industrial improvement. Discontent, therefore, took in the main a different ...
— The English Utilitarians, Volume I. • Leslie Stephen

... from the incubus of France when the British provinces showed symptoms of revolt. The measures on the part of the mother-country which roused their resentment, far from being oppressive, were less burdensome than the navigation laws to which they had long submitted; and they resisted taxation by Parliament simply ...
— Montcalm and Wolfe • Francis Parkman

... tempest, swayed fitfully to and fro upon the walls, and rustled uneasily about the decorations of the bed. But my efforts were fruitless. An irrepressible tremor gradually pervaded my frame; and, at length, there sat upon my very heart an incubus of utterly causeless alarm. Shaking this off with a gasp and a struggle, I uplifted myself upon the pillows, and, peering earnestly within the intense darkness of the chamber, hearkened—I know not why, ...
— The Haunters & The Haunted - Ghost Stories And Tales Of The Supernatural • Various

... understand my position, had bid me hope and be brave. She had told me she loved me—she, whom hundreds of brave men would love to call their own. I would try again. I would brake the chains Voltaire had forged; I WOULD hurl from me the incubus ...
— Weapons of Mystery • Joseph Hocking

... personal friendship than she had bestowed on any Minister since the death of Lord Melbourne; and her relations with his successor, Lord Salisbury, appear to have been perfectly harmonious. The decisive rejection by the country of the Home Rule policy removed a great incubus from her mind, and she was fully in harmony with the strong Imperialist sentiments which now began to prevail in English thought, and especially with the warmer feeling towards our distant colonies which was one of its chief ...
— Historical and Political Essays • William Edward Hartpole Lecky

... cried Miss Twinkleton, with a chastely-rallying forefinger. 'O you gentlemen, you gentlemen! Fie for shame, that you are so hard upon us poor maligned disciplinarians of our sex, for your sakes! But as Miss Ferdinand is at present weighed down by an incubus'—Miss Twinkleton might have said a pen-and-ink-ubus of writing out Monsieur La Fontaine— 'go to her, Rosa my dear, and tell her the penalty is remitted, in deference to the intercession of your ...
— The Mystery of Edwin Drood • Charles Dickens

... Ruth, was free! There was no dissociating the two facts. They shouted their message together. He was rid of his incubus—why mince the word now!—rid of her gadfly vulgarity, her shallow emotions, her pinch-beck ideals, her hideous selfishness. By her own rash act she had freed him to marry the woman he loved with all ...
— The Henchman • Mark Lee Luther

... keeping with the small, oddly-shaped rooms of their future home in East Chester Close. None knew how strong was the instinct of self-preservation, it may almost be called, which impelled Ellinor to shake off, at any cost of present pain, the incubus of a terrible remembrance. She wanted to go into an unhaunted dwelling in a free, unknown country—she felt as if it was her only chance of sanity. Sometimes she thought her senses would not hold together till the time when all these ...
— A Dark Night's Work • Elizabeth Gaskell

... the uninhabited wilderness on the north side, and leaving us to die of hunger. They had conspired together to land us, but to return immediately with the boats after having thus got rid of the incubus of their guests. ...
— In the Heart of Africa • Samuel White Baker

... too had a funeral service that day, but a very different funeral, and one which oppressed "St. George" Winter with a peculiar sadness. Death, as a rule, did not seem sad to him; but he had a horror of the habit of gambling, which appeared to his eyes like an incubus on a man's life, a dead albatross hung round the neck to rot. And this man who had died and was to be buried in the cemetery at Monaco had been a gambler for thirty years. He and his faded wife had existed rather than lived in a third-class hotel, where they kept ...
— The Guests Of Hercules • C. N. Williamson and A. M. Williamson

... echinus, echini; magus, magi. But such as have properly become English words, may form the plural regularly in es; as, chorus, choruses: so, apparatus, bolus, callus, circus, fetus, focus, fucus, fungus, hiatus, ignoramus, impetus, incubus, isthmus, nautilus, nucleus, prospectus, rebus, sinus, surplus. Five of these make the Latin plural like the singular; but the mere English scholar has no occasion to be told which they are. Radius makes the plural radii or radiuses. Genius ...
— The Grammar of English Grammars • Goold Brown

... divine right of a class or caste, enjoying supremacy or special privilege. It also is a surviving vested interest, that must justify itself, or be swept aside as an incubus. ...
— The Soul of Democracy - The Philosophy Of The World War In Relation To Human Liberty • Edward Howard Griggs

... leisurely filled their baggage trains and packed their portmanteaus. My intention in going to St. Meuse was to witness this evacuation scene, and to be a spectator of the return of light-heartedness to the French population of the place, on the withdrawal of the Teuton incubus which for three years had lain upon the safety-valve of their constitutional sprightliness. I had been a little out of my reckoning of time, and when I reached St. Meuse I found that I had a week to stay there before the event should occur which I had come to witness; ...
— Camps, Quarters, and Casual Places • Archibald Forbes



Words linked to "Incubus" :   fiend, demon, daemon, unpleasant person, daimon, situation, disagreeable person, nightmare, devil



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