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Last straw   /læst strɔ/   Listen
Last straw

noun
1.
The final irritation that stretches your patience beyond the limit.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Last straw" Quotes from Famous Books



... to Henry as if an automobile was the last straw for the poor man's back: those enormous cars, representing fortunes, tyrannizing over the whole highway, frightening the poor old country horses, and endangering the lives of all before them. Henry ...
— The Shoulders of Atlas - A Novel • Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

... of the British Parliament, and it secured for the Canadians the freedom of that worship so dear and so precious to them. So great was the tolerance granted to the Catholics of the North, that your fellow-colonists flew to arms lest a similar concession be made here. It was the last straw that broke the bonds of unity. For, henceforth, it was decreed that only a complete and independent separation from the British Parliament could secure to the people the ...
— The Loyalist - A Story of the American Revolution • James Francis Barrett

... health at the time when she develops into a woman, not because of the special demand for strength made at that time, but because the demands on the general system for strength have been, for twelve or fifteen years, greater than the system could supply. It is not the last straw that breaks the camel's back, but it is all the straws. The mother who has educated her daughter into a healthy appetite for food, as to quality and quantity; who has educated her into a healthy appetite for sleep; who has, through constant watchfulness over her ...
— The Education of American Girls • Anna Callender Brackett

... was. The Head drummed irritably with his fingers on the arm of his chair. This mystery, coming as it did after the series of worries through which he had been passing for the last few days, annoyed him as much as it is to be supposed the last straw annoyed ...
— The Pothunters • P. G. Wodehouse

... a gesture of despair; it seemed to him the last straw that Fanny should have chosen this particular time to come and sob in his room over his ...
— The Magnificent Ambersons • Booth Tarkington

... to be the object of simpering tears when they want to play the pathetic in speaking of your mother to people. They are detestable, contemptible. And Jack Holton's turning up at Amzi's was the very last straw." ...
— Otherwise Phyllis • Meredith Nicholson

... breakdown, to which the cab accident had, no doubt, contributed. As to the other antecedents, they were no concern of mine, though Mr. Bellingham seemed to think otherwise, for he resumed: "That cab business was the last straw, you know, and it finished me off, but I have been going down the hill for a long time. I've had a lot of trouble during the last two years. But I suppose I oughtn't to pester you with the details of my ...
— The Vanishing Man • R. Austin Freeman

... was at a standstill. He knew not how to turn. At last he decided to join with the insurgents, and wailed brutally and dismally. That was the last straw: Rockyfeller, who could no longer (even by shouting to Judas) make himself heard, gave up conversation and gazed angrily about him; angrily yet fearfully, as if he expected some of these numerous bears, lions, tigers and baboons to leap upon him from the darkness. His ...
— The Enormous Room • Edward Estlin Cummings

... cried the former, as he wrung his chum's hand with the vehemence of enthusiastic youth. "That's the last straw that breaks the camel's back! Even a McGee can't hold out against that evidence of friendship! Hurrah for my dad; and hurrah for us! But I say, Larry, it's lucky that poor little pigeon found its way home when it did, or we might have been turned ...
— Chums in Dixie - or The Strange Cruise of a Motorboat • St. George Rathborne

... which brought me to a sudden halt. It was a little figure leaning against one of the great upright posts upon which the gates swing—a crumpled little figure; and even at this distance I could see its shoulders heave to the sobs that racked it. It was the last straw. ...
— The People that Time Forgot • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... a minute; then she understood that he meant afraid of Sir Archie. It was the last straw, and she broke down under it; but, instead of bursting into tears, she laughed—so wild, so eerie a laugh, that Wolfer was alarmed. But the laugh ceased suddenly, and she lowered her veil. He held out his hand again, and held hers in ...
— Nell, of Shorne Mills - or, One Heart's Burden • Charles Garvice

... that he was about to swoon, that he had suffered just as much as a man could suffer, and that Fate was dropping the last straw on the camel's back. His head fell forward. He was beaten for that day by too many mysteries and too many tortures. And then he observed that the pretty young woman who had stolen the cup of tea from the Indian judge was ...
— Hugo - A Fantasia on Modern Themes • Arnold Bennett

... as it was the sole reason for her plum-colored silk and for her husband's dress-coat; and the cutting of this last cable set her completely adrift on the wide and forlorn sea of utter social neglect. And the Beldens!—that was the last straw of all. She seemed to see her husband crowded from his seat at that cheery board by a man whom he himself had taken up and made—a man who was trying to push him from the social world, just as he was ...
— With the Procession • Henry B. Fuller

... villagers. The reason was simple enough; Duane felt himself overcome with emotion. There were tears in his eyes. He sat down on a bench, put his elbows on his knees and his hands to his face. For once he had absolutely no concern for his fate. This ignominy was the last straw. ...
— The Lone Star Ranger • Zane Grey

... responsibility of my keeping. They were paid for looking after me, therefore it was to their interest to keep me alive. But the less this cost them, the greater gainers were they. They knew also that if, by accident, they starved the donkey for the lack of the last straw, a paternal Government would not ...
— Bog-Myrtle and Peat - Tales Chiefly Of Galloway Gathered From The Years 1889 To 1895 • S.R. Crockett

... less," said Argile, sadly, "and yet, do you know, Iain, you did me a bad turn yonder. You made mention of my family's safety, and it was the last straw that broke the back of my resolution. One word of honest duty from you at that time had kept me in Inner-aora though Abijah's array and Jeroboam's horse and foot were ...
— John Splendid - The Tale of a Poor Gentleman, and the Little Wars of Lorn • Neil Munro

... churches that would not condemn every form of human bondage. This stirred against them many of the clergy who, accustomed to having women sit silent during services, were in no mood to treat such a revolt leniently. Then came the last straw. Women decided that they would preach—out of the pulpit first, ...
— History of the United States • Charles A. Beard and Mary R. Beard

... already estimated the amount of hay in my stack! said Brandur. You have already divided this miserable haycock among yourselves, divided it down to the very last straw. And you have weighed it almost to a gram. Then why speak to me about it? Why not take it just as it is and scatter it to the four winds? Why not?— The voice of the ...
— Seven Icelandic Short Stories • Various

... he reflected wrathfully, was the last straw. Wyatt's presence had been a nervous inconvenience to him for years. The time had come to put an end to it. It was with a comfortable feeling of magnanimity that he resolved not to report the breach of ...
— Mike • P. G. Wodehouse

... "There's a limit to how long you can defend your unit. Face it, man, those three boys have gone off their rockers. They're too cocky. This is the last straw." He turned away from the young Solar Guard officer and faced the others. "Let's get on with the interrogation. Firehouse! What have you ...
— Sabotage in Space • Carey Rockwell

... them mercilessly all day, and, though not usually fastidious, the supper was not to their liking. The hash was burnt; the venison, for one of them had shot a deer, had been hung too long; while the dessert, a great pie of desiccated fruits, had been baked to a flinty hardness. That was the last straw; for in the Mountain Province the lumber and railroad gangs as a rule work hard and live well; and when the cans of green tea had been emptied the growls culminated in a call ...
— The Gold Trail • Harold Bindloss

... Twinkletoes replied. "But how about your early birds? Hello! Your moon's whiskers say that it's after five o'clock, and that's not early for birds. Now that I think of it, I don't believe they get up till later—at least in December." Whitey was tired—this was the "last straw." "Early birds!" he snorted, "early fiddlesticks! after five o'clock—just shows how much a cat may believe!" And he started home. Mr. Twinkletoes followed lazily, observing calmly, "I think the early milkman will ...
— The Book of the Cat • Mabel Humphrey and Elizabeth Fearne Bonsall

... the night wrought in the most ordinary and accustomed things attracted him strongly. But now he was too conscious of a smarting spirit. Mr. and Mrs. Orde were talking busily about something. He could not even get a chance to ask a question; and that seemed the last straw. His lips quivered, and he had to remember very hard that he was not a little girl in order to keep ...
— The Adventures of Bobby Orde • Stewart Edward White

... so lovely in his accoutrements! He's such a splendid soldier; that was the last straw that kindled my soul to say yes. He's home from Exonbury for a night between the drills,' continued Mrs. Peach. 'He goes back to-morrow morning for the Review, and when it's over he's going to meet me. But, guide ...
— The Romantic Adventures of a Milkmaid • Thomas Hardy

... The child's a born dancer! Lydia Tchinova must see her. She'll have to train. Poor Hugh!" She chuckled enjoyably. "This will be the last straw! He'll be compelled to invent ...
— The Lamp of Fate • Margaret Pedler

... to fill our hearts with peace, for it was to us the crown and triumph of the year. We were not dismayed by the leaves that fell with rustling sound in Tochty woods, nor by the bare stubble fields from which the last straw had been raked by thrifty hands, nor by the touch of cold in the northwest wind blowing over Ben Urtach, nor by the greyness of the running water. The long toil of the year had not been in vain, and the harvest had been safely gathered. The clump of sturdy little stacks, ...
— Kate Carnegie and Those Ministers • Ian Maclaren

... That was the last straw, and we began a vigorous war upon those wild and predatory cats. The cats came off second best. We killed every cat that was found hunting in the park, and we certainly got some that were big and bad. We eliminated that pest, and we are keeping it ...
— Our Vanishing Wild Life - Its Extermination and Preservation • William T. Hornaday

... "The last straw was his bringing that ridiculous charge against Buck Green," Mrs. Archer interrupted with unexpected spirit. "That stamped him for what he was; because a nicer, cleaner, better-mannered young man I've seldom seen. He could no more have stolen cattle ...
— Shoe-Bar Stratton • Joseph Bushnell Ames

... marching-orders to the "Fair Impure," as his shocked and strait-laced Ebersdorfians dubbed the intruder among them. There was also some suggestion, advanced by a gardener, that she had a habit of taking a short cut across the princely flower-beds when she was in a hurry. This was the last straw. ...
— The Magnificent Montez - From Courtesan to Convert • Horace Wyndham

... desperate man, was really more so through his association with such rascals as these, than for any other cause. And Thad chanced to know just why he had doubly earned this reputation for ugliness during the last year or so; Jim Hasty's running away with his little girl, Lina, had been the last straw that broke the camel's back; since it had made Old Cale feel reckless, and as though he cared no longer for ...
— The Boy Scouts in the Maine Woods - The New Test for the Silver Fox Patrol • Herbert Carter

... the last straw had been laid on her heavy burden, the last drop in the bitter cup. She went to her room and lay down on her bed, worn out with misery. Should she go home? Was it kind to leave Betty with all this trouble alone, with no one to sympathise? ...
— Bristol Bells - A Story of the Eighteenth Century • Emma Marshall

... to tell me you live at Coole," says Miss Beresford, in a tone that is almost tragic, "I warn you it will be the last straw, and that I shan't be ...
— Rossmoyne • Unknown

... like the camel under the last straw when the announcement of the proposed marriage was made to her. It was worse than Mary's—worse than Rose's—worse than any other misfortune that had befallen the family. She sat down and wept at the thought of what ...
— Sisters • Ada Cambridge

... and fell over sideways against me. Old Peg stopped short, hanging her head as if she, too, were at the limit of her strength. I was frightfully tired myself, and frozen with terror of what father would say. Gran'ther's collapse was the last straw. I began to cry loudly, but father ignored my distress with an indifference which cut me to the heart. He lifted gran'ther out of the buckboard, carrying the unconscious little old body into the house without ...
— Hillsboro People • Dorothy Canfield

... The last straw was when the Brigadier caused it to be made known that if any officer was particularly unsettled about his future he might be granted a personal interview and it would be seen what could be done for him. William sat down with the air of one who has established a thumping bridgehead over his Rubicon ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 156, Feb. 5, 1919 • Various

... Peter's engagement that was the last straw," Margaret said. "The poor baby withered and shrank like a flower in the blast when ...
— Turn About Eleanor • Ethel M. Kelley

... disappears like a whirling tempest from the presence of her faithless husband, never again to meet him. This manner of showing resentment to the gallant sailor's fondness for the wife of Sir William Hamilton was the last straw. There was nothing dignified in Lady Nelson's tornado farewell to her husband; rather, if the records may be relied on, it was accompanied by a flow of abuse which could only ...
— Drake, Nelson and Napoleon • Walter Runciman

... complete. Giardini fancied he had an opportunity for distinguishing himself—and he succeeded! for that same evening he was accused of trying to poison the whole conclave, and was obliged to leave Rome and Italy without waiting to pack up. This disaster was the last straw. Now," and Gambara put his finger to his forehead and shook ...
— Gambara • Honore de Balzac

... our nags (confound them!) We've thought of our native land; We have cussed our English brother, (For he does not understand.) We've cussed the whole of creation, And the cross swings low for the morn, Last straw (and by stern obligation) To the Empire's ...
— A Yeoman's Letters - Third Edition • P. T. Ross

... That was the last straw that broke the camel's back. By night Mrs. Hastings was delirious, and Dr. Earle ...
— The New Penelope and Other Stories and Poems • Frances Fuller Victor

... Assistant or a maid at the present wages," some one says. "But I do wish I had some one who could get and serve dinner every night. I am so tired by evening that cooking is the last straw." ...
— How To Write Special Feature Articles • Willard Grosvenor Bleyer

... of the pursuit was the last straw. I gave up hope, and my intentions were narrowed to one frantic desire—to hide the jewels. Patriotism, which I had almost forgotten, flickered up in that crisis. At any rate Laputa should not have the Snake. If he drove out the white man, he should ...
— Prester John • John Buchan

... of God!" he growled. "These preachers of new creeds are the last straw, if one were wanting! They choose the one soft place where Mohammedan and Hindoo think alike, and smite! If I wanted to raise hell from end to end of Hind, I too would preach a new creed, and turn good-looking women loose to ...
— Rung Ho! • Talbot Mundy

... learned self-containment in a hard school, looked up at him, and said: "Spanish filly! Do you mean that girl we saw dancing in the Pandemonium Ballet? Well, you are a thief and a blackguard." It had been the last straw on a sorely loaded consciousness; reaching up from his chair Dartie seized his wife's arm, and recalling the achievements of his boyhood, twisted it. Winifred endured the agony with tears in her eyes, ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... mistress on the 4th of August. On the same day of the year she had married me; on that 4th she had lost Edward's love, and Bagshawe had appeared like a sinister omen—like a grin on the face of Fate. It was the last straw. She ran upstairs, arranged herself decoratively upon her bed—she was a sweetly pretty woman with smooth pink and white cheeks, long hair, the eyelashes falling like a tiny curtain on her cheeks. She drank the little phial of ...
— The Good Soldier • Ford Madox Ford

... the last straw! Dam had passed through a most disturbing night; he had kept guard in the lonely Snake-haunted darkness, guard over a mortuary in which lay a corpse; he had had to keep knocking at the corpse's door, his mind had run on funerals, he had thought he heard the dead man groan, he ...
— Snake and Sword - A Novel • Percival Christopher Wren

... acted as the last straw which was to swamp the burden of Eve's grief. Control was in vain, and in another instant, with Adam's arms around her, she lay sobbing out her sorrow on his breast, and the tears, as they came, thrust the evil spirit away. So that when, an hour later, the two ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Volume 26, July 1880. • Various

... and 'The comparative greatness of Napoleon and Alexander.' The younger children read storybooks in the same quiet manner. A children's room would relieve the pressure on all three departments of the library." The "last straw" that led to the grant of rooms was a newspaper article illustrated by a photograph of the reference-room on a Sunday afternoon with one man, one woman and fifty-one ...
— Library Work with Children • Alice I. Hazeltine

... really much more fun having camels and things," said Celia. "'It's the last straw that breaks the camel's back.' Who'll do 'camels'? You'd better," she added ...
— The Sunny Side • A. A. Milne

... the last straw. The Cabin-boy reached for Marmaduke's neck, and would surely have choked him then and there, if Freddie had not caught his arm and ...
— The Old Tobacco Shop - A True Account of What Befell a Little Boy in Search of Adventure • William Bowen

... last straw which provoked the retaliatory legislation. But, alone of the seemingly unadjustable disputes pending between the United States and Great Britain, it was on the blacklist issue that the latter had an unanswerable defense. The British stand left official Washington's complaint ...
— The Story of the Great War, Volume VI (of VIII) - History of the European War from Official Sources • Various

... the last straw! She put the cat out, yowling but unharmed, and silently cleared away the debris. Then, when the bombardment was over, she put on her bonnet and went out. She came back an hour later, to find the ...
— The French Twins • Lucy Fitch Perkins

... That was the last straw; for I thought that some dreadful fascination was impelling my friend to hurl himself out! Wildly I threw my arms about him, and Guthrie leaped ...
— The Insidious Dr. Fu-Manchu • Sax Rohmer

... the poor Indian's strength finally broke down. Hitherto he had pushed forward with some degree of hope, but on the morning of this day a broken branch caught his snow-shoe and tripped him. At any other time the fall would have been a trifle, but in his weak condition it acted like the last straw which breaks the camel's back. Wapaw rose with difficulty, and brushing the snow from his eyes, looked earnestly at his snow-shoes, well knowing that if they had been broken in the fall his power of advancing ...
— Silver Lake • R.M. Ballantyne

... request; and Bounder turned away, with haughty mien, to do as he was bid. He was consumed with fierce mortification. He would bear it this time, but not again. He was like the proverbial camel, which succumbs beneath the last straw. Very soon the point would be reached at which ...
— The Golden Shoemaker - or 'Cobbler' Horn • J. W. Keyworth

... Augsburg [Footnote: See below, p. 136.] on an equal footing with that of the Catholic religion. Protestantism among the German princes proved a disintegrating, rather than a unifying, factor of national life. The rise of Protestantism was the last straw which broke ...
— A Political and Social History of Modern Europe V.1. • Carlton J. H. Hayes

... a burden; but we need not pay much respect to the gentleman who is always calling out that he would rather have an elephant when he knows there are no elephants in the country. We may concede that a straw may break the camel's back, but we like to know that it really is the last straw and not the first. ...
— Tremendous Trifles • G. K. Chesterton

... in such a tragic tone, that Theo almost laughed outright. His amusement was the last straw to Jimmy. He burst into a storm of scornful blame in the midst of which Theo quietly stepped into his room and shut the door, leaving Jimmy to fume and storm as much as he chose. That brought the boy to himself. He began to cool down and to remember, that ...
— The Bishop's Shadow • I. T. Thurston

... and I dined with the Vice-Admiral who kept a signaller on special watch for my messages from the shore—but nothing came in. He, the Admiral, wants to take all the 600 stokers serving in the Royal Naval Division back to the ships. This will be the last straw to the Division. We had the treat of being taken off the Triad in the Admiral's racing motor boat and when we got ashore found good news which I have ...
— Gallipoli Diary, Volume 2 • Ian Hamilton

... be patient and accept your punishment, it will come out all right." Alex laid her hand on Charlotte's shoulder, but the girl twitched it away. Rising, she stood stony and silent. Alex's condemnation was the last straw. ...
— The Pleasant Street Partnership - A Neighborhood Story • Mary F. Leonard

... McQuade's. But though in sight of the haven where we would be, our troubles were not yet over. Crossing a broken culvert not half a mile from the house, one of the horses fell in, and we all had to get out and walk, an annoyance which we felt to be the "last straw" ...
— A Trip to Manitoba • Mary FitzGibbon

... Paris Conference seems to have been the last straw that 'broke the camel's back' of the middle course government, causing President, Cabinet and all, to resign. This allowed the political power to fall into the hands of those who are alone capable of handling ...
— The Red Conspiracy • Joseph J. Mereto

... thing that ever he had done. In a word, he told Milly. He told her when they'd gone to bed one Christmas night and unbosomed his troubled mind. He'd paid William another fifty only the week night before and, as he presently confessed to Milly, 'twas the last straw that broke his back and sent him to ...
— The Torch and Other Tales • Eden Phillpotts

... wonder, then, that they viewed with alarm his sudden rise? They kept their counsel, however, and treated with him, for it was best. They allowed him his scope without open revolt until the day upon which he hung out his shingle. This was the last straw. They could stand no more. Asbury had stolen their other chances from them, and now he was poaching upon the last of their preserves. So Mr. Bingo and Mr. Latchett put their heads together to plan the downfall ...
— The heart of happy hollow - A collection of stories • Paul Laurence Dunbar

... informed his assailant that he had severed his connection with the business, but it was not until the red-headed proprietor of a groggery drew nigh with a grievance, that the last straw had been put upon his already overtaxed ...
— The Daughter of a Republican • Bernie Babcock

... as if he was passin' the morning with Ferguson, but I seen that it was the last straw with Sandy. He hefted out both guns and trained 'em on ...
— Trailin'! • Max Brand

... are wearily conscious that of making many books there is no end. No longer is any but the most confirmed writer suffered to spin out volume after volume in complacent ignorance of his readers' state of mind, for these victims of eye-strain and nerves turn upon the newest book, the metaphorical last straw on the camel's load, with the exasperated cry, ...
— The Poet's Poet • Elizabeth Atkins

... her chair with a gesture which signified: "This is the last straw!" and remained motionless, apparently overwhelmed, with her face covered by one hand, but furtively watching the face of the girl so ...
— Jacqueline, Complete • (Mme. Blanc) Th. Bentzon

... something on his mind, Phil saw. During the night he must have been thinking deeply. Perhaps conscience was gripping him more than ever, and the coming of that fearful storm had been the "last straw on the ...
— Phil Bradley's Mountain Boys - The Birch Bark Lodge • Silas K. Boone

... genteel, whose only friends were my own servants and a few poverty-stricken landward folk. I had found out a good way of trade, but I had set a hornet's nest buzzing about my ears, and was on the fair way to be extinguished. This alliance between my rivals and the Free Companions was the last straw to my burden. If the sea was to be shut to him, then a merchant might as well ...
— Salute to Adventurers • John Buchan

... Dover, Ky., had accumulated a large quantity of middlings in an upper story, when the weight caused some sagging, and a man was sent up with a shovel to "even" the bin. His pressure was the "last straw," and the floor under the man broke through, pouring out a cascade of middlings, which flowed down from story to story, filling the mill with its dust. In a very few minutes it reached the boiler room, and the ...
— Scientific American, Vol.22, No. 1, January 1, 1870 • Various

... he got the Last Straw—a bewildered Rufus with a Letter of Introduction. That took 40 Minutes. When Rufe walked out, the Busy Man fell with his Face among the ...
— People You Know • George Ade

... in a moment. Beatrice and Benedick were alone in the church now; and when Beatrice said, "Kill Claudio," Glory leaped up again and clapped her hands. But Benedick would not kill Claudio, and it was the last straw of all. That wasn't what she called being a great actor, and it was shameful to "sit and listen to such plays. Lots of disgraceful scenes happened in life, but people didn't come to the theatre to see such ...
— The Christian - A Story • Hall Caine

... "This is the last straw!" she exclaimed indignantly. "He's chewed up two sofa pillows and a twelve-dollar hammock and no end of books; he destroyed Sahwah's kite last week; he's broken the windows in the greenhouse three or four times; he's ruined ...
— The Camp Fire Girls Do Their Bit - Or, Over the Top with the Winnebagos • Hildegard G. Frey

... to the gentlemen of the "Engine Company" to shut off the water in order to allow the line to be carried up the ladder, and they received the command at the moment Tom lifted the nozzle, so that the stream dried up in his hands. This was the last straw, and the blackened, singed and scarred chief, setting the trumpet to his lips, gave himself ...
— The Two Vanrevels • Booth Tarkington

... but sat down again. Then he began at once speaking with loud, nervous haste, gesticulating, and in a positive frenzy. He was unmistakably a man driven into a corner, on the brink of ruin, catching at the last straw, ready to sink if he failed. Old Samsonov probably grasped all this in an instant, though his face remained cold ...
— The Brothers Karamazov • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... attempt should be made. Until, however, she was convinced that her two children were to be sold, she could not quite muster courage to set out on the journey. This threat to sell proved in multitudes of instances, "the last straw on the camel's back." When nothing else would start them this would. Mary and her children were the only slaves owned by this Ennis, consequently her duties were that of "Jack of all trades;" sometimes ...
— The Underground Railroad • William Still

... Fenn had taken the incident at the gate, it nevertheless rankled. He read prayers that night in a distinctly unprayerful mood. It seemed to him that it would be lucky if he could get through to the end of the term before Mr Kay applied that last straw which does not break the backs of camels only. Eight weeks' holiday, with plenty of cricket, would brace him up for another term. And he had been invited to play for the county against Middlesex four days after the holidays ...
— The Head of Kay's • P. G. Wodehouse

... and derisive shouts of the villagers after the new hands that had been taken on at the factory. In a few minutes these poor girls came to the door to explain that they could not return to work. It was the last straw. For a moment his anger flamed up in a torrent of rage against these miscreants whom he had saved from poverty. Then it died down in meek submission to what he ...
— My New Curate • P.A. Sheehan

... to get my own way. I've been holding on to myself all day, and that was just the last straw that made me let go. Don't call it a loan, for I never want to see it again. Keep it till you find some one who needs it as much as you do just now, and then pass it along. Wouldn't it be interesting to see how ...
— Glenloch Girls • Grace M. Remick

... but I would advise all sensible people to keep in mind the following truth: Violated hygienic laws predispose to disease; then, when resistance is broken down, the immediate and exciting cause may be anything capable of laying on the "last straw." ...
— Appendicitis: The Etiology, Hygenic and Dietetic Treatment • John H. Tilden, M.D.

... Ross nor Anton could eat more than a few mouthfuls, and the hot drink was the last straw to their sleepiness. Ross fell asleep with an unfinished piece of corn-pone in his hand, and Anton's head ...
— The Boy with the U. S. Weather Men • Francis William Rolt-Wheeler

... that his predecessors had exhausted every device which their financial ingenuity could suggest, down to their last supposed master-stroke, the addition of 10 per cent to the assessed taxes—thus adding very nearly the last straw which was to break the camel's back—the last peculiarly cruel pressure ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. 327 - Vol. 53, January, 1843 • Various

... sister came to him and said, "John, you must send that creature away. Now the farmers and the old ladies are afraid to send their animals to you—just as we were beginning to be well off again. Now we shall be ruined entirely. This is the last straw. I will no longer be housekeeper for you if you don't send away ...
— The Story of Doctor Dolittle • Hugh Lofting

... exceptions which make medicine so perilous a profession. And in truth, the little tailor's unwholesome life and unsanitary surroundings had unfortunately brought him to such a pass that the trace of copper-poisoning was like the last straw. Gossips and neighbors took it upon themselves to explain the sudden death, and no suspicion of blame lighted ...
— Cousin Pons • Honore de Balzac

... other past forgiveness. Being together as we are every day, and all day long, one can easily imagine how a very little more pressure would smash the chains of politeness. You may have heard of the last straw and its ...
— Molly Bawn • Margaret Wolfe Hamilton

... what the Major took to be breeding, there was a piteous revelation of a feeble, vindictive, and rather nasty character. It became more and more evident that the cheating incident—or, rather, the accusation, as he persisted in calling it—was merely the last straw in his fall, and that the whole thing had been the result of a crumbly unprincipled kind of will underneath, rather than of any particular strain of vice. He appeared, even now, to think that his traveling about with a woman who was not ...
— None Other Gods • Robert Hugh Benson

... This was Dorothy's last straw; she went away and threw herself, dressed, on her bed, sobbing as if her heart would break. And only this morning she thought she was miserable because her new ...
— The Empire Annual for Girls, 1911 • Various

... as ever! But I'm a rotten villain, Jake. I never could keep it up, and your virtuous presence is the last straw. ...
— Charles Rex • Ethel M. Dell

... last straw. It broke down Warden Atherton. He surrendered to the demonstration that I was unkillable. As I ...
— The Jacket (The Star-Rover) • Jack London

... adroitly turned this to the best advantage. It was the last straw. The General capitulated. Walking over into the adjoining room, he wrote on the blue folder: "Er ist frei gelassen." I would give lots for those folders; but, though safety was by no means certain, I found I yet had nerve enough to take ...
— In the Claws of the German Eagle • Albert Rhys Williams

... for Lovey, and lots of things for Lovey out of his old trousers, only he says that he has to wear them himself until he feels ashamed of his appearance whenever he meets anybody; but my own skirts are what seem the last straw, or rather the bricks that I haven't any straw to make. The last one was made out of some dead Somebody Byrd's black cashmere shawl, I don't know whose, but I can't see the next ...
— Phyllis • Maria Thompson Daviess

... with a Bell heroine is sure of a hearty welcome. What, therefore, can be said of this book, which contains no less than four types of witching and buoyant femininity? There are four stories of power and dash in this volume: "The Last Straw," "The Surrender of Lapwing," "The Penance of Hedwig," and "Garret Owen's Little Countess." Each one of these tells a tale full of verve and thrill, each one has a heroine ...
— The Bright Face of Danger • Robert Neilson Stephens

... Spain. The English merchant fleet went out, and big profits seemed assured. But presently the Primrose, 'a tall ship of London,' came flying home to say that Philip had suddenly seized the merchandise, imprisoned the men, and taken the ships and guns for use with the Great Armada. That was the last straw. The peaceful traders now saw that they were wrong and that the fighting ones were right; and for the first time both could rejoice over the clever trick by which John Hawkins had got his own again from Philip. In 1571, three years after ...
— Elizabethan Sea Dogs • William Wood

... had consented to be my wife, and that she would remain here in happy seclusion until such time as all arrangements for our wedding were complete. The humiliation of these vulgar people's irony seemed like the last straw which overweighed my forbearance. The room and pension I had already paid two days in advance, so I had nothing more to say either to the ribald landlord or to Mlle. Goldberg senior. I was bitterly angered against her, and refused her the solace of a kindly look or of an encouraging pressure ...
— Castles in the Air • Baroness Emmuska Orczy

... the dedication pleased him very much. The effect of the diversion, however, was only momentary, for Beethoven, looking through the composition, lighted upon something to which he took exception, and forthwith proceeded to point it out to his visitor. This was the last straw, and Schubert, losing his presence of mind altogether, fled from the room. On reaching the street his courage returned, and too late he thought of all that he might have said. Let us complete the anecdote by relating that ...
— Story-Lives of Great Musicians • Francis Jameson Rowbotham

... I'll stand by it," said he, "this is the last straw. One break and then freedom. Surgery is better than tinkering. Cut the knot and let who will try to join it then. One pang, and afterwards ease, fresh air, and freedom: fresh air! gulps of it, with the head back and an easy mind. I'm not the man to ...
— Here are Ladies • James Stephens

... such oppression. Then, to cap the climax, father, who had always sided with me whenever our difficulties were laid before him, now gave his decision, for some reason, in favor of James. That was the last straw on the camel's back. Nothing but harsh treatment by a master, who asserted his rights under the law, awaited me. To remain was to be trod upon, and suffer, and become a slave instead of a man. To leave was impossible, unless I left clandestinely. For ...
— From Boyhood to Manhood • William M. Thayer

... call-boy told him the lions were ready in the Colosseum. Resignation, obstinacy and defiance—all nicely blended under a turn-the-other-cheek exterior. He looked woebegone, and his thin, handsome face betrayed a sleepless night and a breakfastless morning. I could feel that my presence was the last straw to this unfortunate ...
— The Motormaniacs • Lloyd Osbourne

... French steamer that was to sail for Havre that day in an hour. I ran all the way down to Battery Place, where I had my valise in a boarding-house, and all the way back, arriving at the pier breathless, in time to see my steamer swing out in the stream beyond my reach. It was the last straw. I sat on the stringpiece and wept with mortification. When I arose and went my way, the war was over, as far as I was concerned. It was that in fact, as it speedily appeared. The country which to-day, after ...
— The Making of an American • Jacob A. Riis

... admit into their body, as capable of the higher social pleasures and of polite culture, an enormous accession of people who actually work for their own bread—even people in trade; and it is beginning to be perceived that their amusements—also, which seems the last straw, their vices—can actually be enjoyed by the base mechanical sort, insomuch that, if this kind of thing goes on, there must in the end follow an effacement of all classes, and the peer will walk arm and arm with the blacksmith. But class distinctions die hard, and the working men are not yet all ...
— As We Are and As We May Be • Sir Walter Besant

... Oh, that is the last straw! Trying a man's patience like that can but have a fatal ending. I am not to blame if something terrible happens. I allow no one to make a laughing stock of me, and, God knows, when I am furious, I advise nobody to come near me, damn it all! There's nothing ...
— The Schoolmaster and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... "This seems the last straw!" sobbed Joan, for Raymond had told her that day at the Brier Bush that important business was taking ...
— The Shield of Silence • Harriet T. Comstock

... hundred; and I've been losing some right along from one cause or another. No lambs, either, this spring, except dead ones. I thought I could hang on till my luck changed, but losing a hundred head two weeks ago was the last straw. I'm done now." ...
— The Iron Furrow • George C. Shedd

... the last straw, the final piece of humiliation. Code stiffened as a soldier might to rebuke. A deadly, dull anger surged within him and took possession of his whole being—such an anger as can only come to one who, amiable and upright by nature, is driven to ...
— The Harbor of Doubt • Frank Williams

... "That's the last straw," growled Trenholme fiercely. He raced out, bought a set of picture postcards showing the village and the Tudor mansion, and dispatched them to the editor of News in Pictures with his compliments. Coming back from the station, he passed the Easton ...
— The Strange Case of Mortimer Fenley • Louis Tracy

... his chair. This was the last straw! If he had told Mrs. Ball once that he was never to be disturbed in the morning on any pretext whatsoever, he had told her twenty times. It was simply too infernal to be endured if his work time was to be cut into like this. ...
— Something New • Pelham Grenville Wodehouse

... chateau so that they would not communicate their disease to the children who played in the park. In 1785 the king purchased Saint-Cloud and presented it to the queen, together with six millions in her own right, to enjoy and dispose of as she pleased. That act added the last straw to the burden of resentment of the overwrought public; from that time she was known as "Madame Deficit." Also she was accused of having sent her brother, Joseph II., one hundred million livres in three years. She was hissed at ...
— Women of Modern France - Woman In All Ages And In All Countries • Hugo P. Thieme

... The Lady Superior had discovered the girl's flight,—or her attempt. One of the governing sisterhood was here to arraign him for it, or at least prevent an open scandal. Yet he was resolved; and seizing this last straw, he hurriedly mounted the stairs, determined to do battle at any risk for the girl's safety, and to ...
— In a Hollow of the Hills • Bret Harte

... with news of the Battle of Leipzig came letters from home which informed Gallatin that his nomination as envoy had been rejected by the Senate. This was the last straw. To remain inactive as an envoy was bad enough; to stay on unaccredited seemed impossible. He determined to take advantage of a hint dropped by his friend Baring that the British Ministry, while declining mediation, was not unwilling to treat directly with the American commissioners. He would go ...
— Jefferson and his Colleagues - A Chronicle of the Virginia Dynasty, Volume 15 In The - Chronicles Of America Series • Allen Johnson

... black letters across the back, failed to give us a thrill of pleasure. At last it became too utterly miserable to be borne. The sight of the deck-steward bringing round cups of half-cold beef-tea with grease spots floating on the top proved the last straw, so, with a graceful, wavering flight like a woodcock, we zigzagged to our bunks, where we have ...
— Olivia in India • O. Douglas

... The last straw, however, breaks the camel's back, and this last drink reduced Mr Villiers to that mixed state which is known in colonial phrase as half-cocked. He lurched out of the hotel, and went in the direction of the Pactolus claim. His only difficulty ...
— Madame Midas • Fergus Hume

... the unhired serving maids rushed to Sir Tristram and crowded about him and began their eternal, "I can bake, sir, I can brew, sir," etc., and begged him to hire them. Now this was the last straw, and Sir Tristram looked for Martha and Nancy to come to his assistance, but they only shrieked with laughter and urged the girls on. Meantime, Plunkett and Lionel had approached them, and, when Martha noticed that they were about to speak, ...
— Operas Every Child Should Know - Descriptions of the Text and Music of Some of the Most Famous Masterpieces • Mary Schell Hoke Bacon

... adventure—these gatherings of half-starved yokels, armed with sticks and axes, and they were quickly put down and punished in a way that even William the Bastard would not have considered as too lenient. But oppression had made them mad; the introduction of thrashing machines was but the last straw, the culminating act of the hideous system followed by landlords and their tenants—the former to get the highest possible rent for his land, the other to get his labour at the lowest possible rate. It was a compact between landlord and tenant aimed against ...
— A Shepherd's Life • W. H. Hudson

... long suffering diplomacy has at least this merit, that if America enters the War it will be as a united people. Germany's decision to resort to unrestricted submarine warfare on February 1 is the last straw: now even Mr. Henry Ford has offered to place his works at the disposal of the ...
— Mr. Punch's History of the Great War • Punch

... for the fiery temper of the Irishman; genial and obliging as he had striven to be, it had been clearly apparent to me that he was growing increasingly restive under the lengthening list of my demands, and now this cool requisition of a boat was the last straw that broke the camel's back—or, in other words, exhausted the Irishman's slender stock of patience; he looked at me with blazing eyes for a moment, ...
— The Castaways • Harry Collingwood

... however, that last straw which renders a burden intolerable. It was laid on at the time when slavery ...
— The Settler and the Savage • R.M. Ballantyne



Words linked to "Last straw" :   provocation, irritation, aggravation



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