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Mystery   /mˈɪstəri/   Listen
Mystery

noun
(pl. mysteries)
1.
Something that baffles understanding and cannot be explained.  Synonyms: closed book, enigma, secret.  "It remains one of nature's secrets"
2.
A story about a crime (usually murder) presented as a novel or play or movie.  Synonyms: mystery story, whodunit.



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"Mystery" Quotes from Famous Books



... the expression "square-headed." Genestas was accustomed to read the indications that mark the features of men destined to do great things, since he had been brought into close relations with the energetic natures sought out by Napoleon; so he suspected that there must be some mystery in this life of obscurity, and said to himself as he looked at ...
— The Country Doctor • Honore de Balzac

... magic of your face is not all its own, but has stolen the passionate light that was in my eyes at some immemorial meeting, and then gathered from my love a mystery that has now forgotten ...
— The Fugitive • Rabindranath Tagore

... little astonished, as he started on again, at the pregnant weight of this new parcel. But he did not stop to investigate. He did not care to gulp and lose the mystery at one swallow. He scurried off with it, chucklingly, like a barnyard hen with a corncob, to peck at it in solitude. He swung south and then west again, to his own street. He went up his own steps, through his own door, and up to his own top-floor room with the rakish back wall. ...
— Stories from Everybody's Magazine • 1910 issues of Everybody's Magazine

... down and rest, Sweetheart," he said, leading her to the root where her governess was wont to sit, while he stretched himself on the turf at her feet, "and I will explain the mystery to thee." ...
— Tales From Scottish Ballads • Elizabeth W. Grierson

... if our ultimate condition must be that of entire subjection and surrender to and harmony with the Divine Will, how sad it is that our consecration is so slow, so protracted, so ungracious; that we take so much time to reach the point where we are altogether the Lord's. People can read the mystery of conversion in the parable of the dry bones in Ezekiel; but there is consecration in the story, too. Little by little we see the dead man coming into the place of blessing; bone to bone, sinew to sinew, nerve to nerve; and when there is the complete ...
— Memoranda Sacra • J. Rendel Harris

... of the latch would the door open.—How could the woman—witch she must be—have locked it? He proceeded to unlock it. He tried one key, then another. He went over the whole bunch. Mystery upon mystery!—not one of them would turn. Bethinking himself, he began to try them the other way, and soon found one to throw the bolt on. He turned it in the contrary direction, and it threw the bolt off: still the door remained immovable! It must then —awful ...
— Malcolm • George MacDonald

... possibilities of wealth to the Old World, while the imagination of Europe, bounded since the beginning of recorded time by the Western ocean, and with the Mediterranean as its centre, shot out to the romance and mystery of ...
— English Literature: Modern - Home University Library Of Modern Knowledge • G. H. Mair

... the Mock Turtle replied, counting off the subjects on his flappers—"Mystery, ancient and modern, with Seaography: then Drawling—the Drawling-master was an old conger eel, that used to come once a week: HE taught us Drawling, Stretching, and Fainting ...
— Journeys Through Bookland V3 • Charles H. Sylvester

... the light of this theory much of the mystery which surrounds the fate of Joan of Arc is explained. She was put to death as a witch, and the conduct of her associates during her military career, as well as the evidence at her trial, bear out the fact that she belonged to the ancient ...
— The Witch-cult in Western Europe - A Study in Anthropology • Margaret Alice Murray

... great and tender name what Messiah is to His people, and the latter points to the character of His dominion throughout the whole earth. 'A wonder of a counsellor,' as the words may be rendered, not only suggests His giving wholesome direction to His people, but, still more, the mystery of the wisdom which guides His plans. Truly, Jesus purposes wonders in the depth of His redeeming design. He intends to do great things, and to reach them by a road which none would have imagined. The counsel to save a world, and that by dying for it, is the miracle of miracles. ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Isaiah and Jeremiah • Alexander Maclaren

... reverberant with accumulated purpose. They are pitiless as the poem; the sign of an ultimate obedience is upon them. Whence came the power that compelled it? Can the source be defined or indicated? We believe it can be indicated, though not defined. We can show where to look for the mystery, that in spite of our regard remains a mystery still. We are persuaded that almost on the instant that it was felt the original emotion of the poem was endorsed Perhaps it came to the poet as the pain of a particular and personal experience; ...
— Aspects of Literature • J. Middleton Murry

... whispers of curious men, the mystery of the thing, were to Lingard a source of never-ending delight. The common talk of ignorance exaggerated the profits of his queer monopoly, and, although strictly truthful in general, he liked, on that matter, to mislead ...
— An Outcast of the Islands • Joseph Conrad

... in the General Council, Count Hubert represented the Orleanist faction in the department. The history of his marriage with the daughter of a small tradesman of Nantes had always remained a mystery. But as the Countess had an air of grandeur, understood better than any one else the art of receiving, passed even for having been beloved by one of the sons of Louis Philippe, the neighboring nobility ...
— The Works of Guy de Maupassant, Vol. 1 (of 8) - Boule de Suif and Other Stories • Guy de Maupassant

... pride must be let go—so Watts shows in his "Court of Death"; all come to the end of the book marked Finis. Death is calm and majestic, with angel wings, and overhead are the figures of Silence and Mystery, guarding, but partially revealing what is beyond the veil—sunrise and the star of hope; while even in the lap of Death nestles a new-born babe—the soul passing into new realms through ...
— Watts (1817-1904) • William Loftus Hare

... vegetables for the ship's company by barter with the natives, and I accompanied the party, but, contrary to expectation, no one was allowed to land, the person in authority having seen something on shore to alarm him, the nature of which continued to us a mystery. The second cutter laid off, and the first remained in water about knee-deep, surrounded by a crowd of unarmed natives. The scene was at that time very animated—groups of men, women, and children, were to be seen staggering under a load of coconuts, wading out to the boats, scrambling ...
— Voyage Of H.M.S. Rattlesnake, Vol. 2 (of 2) • John MacGillivray

... impulse in sending his card up to Kirkwood. Possibly he had anticipated a very different sort of reception from a very different sort of man. Even in the light of subsequent events it remains difficult to fathom the mystery of his choice. Perhaps Fate directed it; stranger things have happened at the dictates ...
— The Black Bag • Louis Joseph Vance

... There was no boat, and they searched along some distance east, turned back to the ledge and went west, still without elucidation of the mystery; then they went as close under the cliffs as they dared go, in the hope of finding some cavern or passage through the rocks that escaped notice ...
— Cutlass and Cudgel • George Manville Fenn

... had ever been further down the Mississippi than St. Louis, and then on a steamboat; so that the mystery of living close to the waters was unknown to the entire bunch. During the whole of that winter Nick was kept busy retailing the amazing things he claimed to have seen and done; until finally the rest of the club had to pass a resolution declaring that unless ...
— Motor Boat Boys Mississippi Cruise - or, The Dash for Dixie • Louis Arundel

... serpents, and ravening beasts of prey, and graceful birds that in the midst of them drink from running fountains and feed from vases of crystal; the passions and the pleasures of human life symbolized together, and the mystery of its redemption; for the mazes of interwoven lines and changeful pictures lead always at last to the Cross, lifted and carved in every place and upon every stone; sometimes with the serpent of eternity wrapt round it, sometimes with doves beneath its ...
— The Stones of Venice, Volume II (of 3) • John Ruskin

... has Mrs Miff, and a mortified bonnet, and eke a thirsty soul for sixpences and shillings. Beckoning to stray people to come into pews, has given Mrs Miff an air of mystery; and there is reservation in the eye of Mrs Miff, as always knowing of a softer seat, but having her suspicions of the fee. There is no such fact as Mr Miff, nor has there been, these twenty years, and Mrs Miff would rather not allude to him. He held some bad opinions, it would seem, about free ...
— Dombey and Son • Charles Dickens

... sexuality occurs—viz., in Hydra, and still lower in some of the one-celled free confervae which "conjugate," which good judges (Thwaites) believe is the simplest form of true sexual generation? (130/1. See Letter 97.) But the whole case is a mystery. ...
— More Letters of Charles Darwin - Volume I (of II) • Charles Darwin

... some errant bolide, which missing its way, butted blindly against the lunar face, and there stuck fast, like a Minie ball mashed against a cast-iron target? Alas! nobody knows. Not even Barbican is able to penetrate thy mystery. But one thing I know. Thy dazzling glare so sore my eyes hath made that longer on thy light to gaze I do not dare. Captain, have ...
— All Around the Moon • Jules Verne

... mystery, then!" Aline exclaimed. "Let us send for them and open them at once. I am glad one of the boxes was not given to me to take care of, for I am afraid I should never have had the patience to wait until I ...
— A March on London • G. A. Henty

... of an outburst of applause such as I had seldom heard before. The hall was small, and it was a mystery how six hundred men could be packed into it. But there they were, solidly packed on both sides of the hall, and as I marched through them they seemed to shake the whole building with their cheers. The chairman rapped for order, and made ...
— From the Bottom Up - The Life Story of Alexander Irvine • Alexander Irvine

... rounded the Horn once more, and was cruising northwards up the coast of Chili. That coast, indeed, once the haunt of corsairs and filibusters, was rich in historic associations and in natural beauties. An element of grandeur and of mystery seemed to hover around the countless ridges and peaks of the Andes, stretching, with the gleam of their eternal snows, for four thousand miles, and gazing down across the illimitable waters of the occident. Upon the plateaux, miles above sea level, stood old ...
— World's War Events, Vol. I • Various

... mystery, Jack dear. Can't you see it is? And it is so much more interesting never to explain it," she essayed fearfully, feigning a laugh of regained naturalness. "We shall never, never find out who he was, by whom it was painted, or what made you break ...
— The Best Short Stories of 1915 - And the Yearbook of the American Short Story • Various

... language and in unusually earnest tones, which were interrupted once or twice by slight laughter. He wondered much what they found to laugh at, but having become by that time accustomed to the guide's little touches of mystery, and being very sleepy, he did not trouble himself ...
— The Rover of the Andes - A Tale of Adventure on South America • R.M. Ballantyne

... time in her life she felt rich and free. Even her husband's presence did not oppress her, for as she crossed the threshold of the hall she had guessed instinctively that the proximity of an old husband did not detract from her in the least, but, on the contrary, gave her that shade of piquant mystery that is so attractive to men. The orchestra was already playing and the dances had begun. After their flat Anna was overwhelmed by the lights, the bright colours, the music, the noise, and looking round the room, thought, "Oh, ...
— The Party and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... all who experience such disappointment the writer would strongly urge a second or third pilgrimage. Come to the Stones on a gloomy day in late October or early March when the surface of the great expanse of the Plain reflects, as water would, the leaden lowering skies. Then perhaps the tragic mystery of the place will fire the imagination as no other scene the wide world over could. Stonehenge is unique whichever way one looks at it. In its age, its uncouth savage strength, and its secretiveness. That it will hold that ...
— Wanderings in Wessex - An Exploration of the Southern Realm from Itchen to Otter • Edric Holmes

... this mystery did I go o'er the sea; and I have seen the truth naked, verily! barefooted ...
— Thus Spake Zarathustra - A Book for All and None • Friedrich Nietzsche

... burnt, and one by one the members of the projected syndicate were assassinated by a mysterious person who called himself "X Esquire." Who was he? And what was his purpose? Mr. Charteris shows himself in this story to be one of the real brand of mystery novelists. ...
— Jack O' Judgment • Edgar Wallace

... and one kind of cake, so that the expected company could not be any particular company. Yet what of Matthew's white collar and the sorrel mare? Mrs. Rachel was getting fairly dizzy with this unusual mystery about quiet, unmysterious ...
— Anne Of Green Gables • Lucy Maud Montgomery

... cabin, which had hitherto been a mystery to all the boys, was unlocked by the head steward, and Mr. Lowington, followed by the officers, entered. The students on deck were ordered forward, and were not even permitted to look down the companion-way, ...
— Outward Bound - Or, Young America Afloat • Oliver Optic

... Ripwinkley telling her about it, "that flings it up, and can call it a shame, after all the shames of years and years? Except just that that the little children were, underneath, when the Lord let them—He knows why—be born so? I tell you, ma'am, it's a mystery; and the nigher you come to it, the more it is; it's a piece of hell and a piece of heaven; it's the wrastle of the angel and the dragon; and it's going on at one end, while they're building up their palaces ...
— Real Folks • Mrs. A. D. T. Whitney

... chandelier. But the mingled illumination of sunset and moonrise from outside contended with it on more than equal terms; and everything in the hall, tapestries, armour, and old oak, the gallery above, the dais with its carved chairs below, had the dim mystery of a stage set ready for the play, before ...
— Delia Blanchflower • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... in the lines of battle, and there could be no siege of Paris so long as Joffre's armies kept in line along the Marne or anywhere in contact with the capital. There was therefore no change of plan and no mystery when Von Kluck's right veered in the direction of its advance from south-west to south and then south-east. It was both avoiding an obstacle and pursuing its original design of outflanking the Entente's left. Not that ...
— A Short History of the Great War • A.F. Pollard

... atmosphere of the chamber. For myself, however, I was mentally discussing certain topics which had formed matter for conversation between us at an earlier period of the evening; I mean the affair of the Rue Morgue, and the mystery attending the murder of Marie Roget. I looked upon it, therefore, as something of a coincidence, when the door of our apartment was thrown open and admitted our old acquaintance, Monsieur G—, the Prefect of the ...
— The Works of Edgar Allan Poe - Volume 2 (of 5) of the Raven Edition • Edgar Allan Poe

... request, I begged to know what was the complaint under which she laboured, that I might endeavour to yield her such relief as was in the power of our professional art. I thus limited my question to the nature of her disease, in the expectation that she herself would clear up the mystery which hung around the manner in which I was called, and introduced to so extraordinary a scene as that which was now before me. Her great weakness seemed to require some composure, and a collecting of her scattered and reduced energies, ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland, Volume 2 - Historical, Traditional, and Imaginative • Alexander Leighton

... this note was, not of the alleged mystery of manner to which, at the outset, it alluded-for none such had I at all observed in the master-mason during his surveys—but of my late kinsman, Captain Julian Dacres, long a ship-master and merchant in the Indian trade, who, about thirty years ago, and at ...
— I and My Chimney • Herman Melville

... on the minds of his disciples. This impression was compounded of astonishment, tenderness, and gratitude. That a man so divine in character, in wisdom, in a command over nature, should submit willingly to such labor, ignominy, and anguish, was a wonder to them. But there was a mystery of sorrow beneath the visible sorrow, a pain within the pain, a depth of grief felt not for himself, but for others, an anguish on account of the sin of the world, which especially awed and touched them. Christ plunged into the midst of sin to ...
— Orthodoxy: Its Truths And Errors • James Freeman Clarke

... "The whole mystery was now explained. A colony of beavers had migrated into the valley, and constructed their dam; and this it was which had ...
— The Desert Home - The Adventures of a Lost Family in the Wilderness • Mayne Reid

... smoked his pipe in silence for a few minutes, blew the smoke out in clouds, and looked at it as though searching for something, and there was a serious look on his face, as though he was trying to fathom some mystery, while the redheaded boy was looking at himself in a hand mirror to see if the freckles on his nose were any smaller since he had been using some of his mother's toilet powder to remove them. Finally Uncle Ike put the bowl of the pipe to his nose and smelled ...
— Peck's Uncle Ike and The Red Headed Boy - 1899 • George W. Peck

... In youth the mystery of woman is still so fresh and new, that to make a fuss about a particular woman seems like looking a gift-horse of the gods in the mouth. The light on the face of womanhood in general is so bewilderingly beautiful that the young man literally cannot tell one woman from ...
— The Book-Bills of Narcissus - An Account Rendered by Richard Le Gallienne • Le Gallienne, Richard

... Planta easily yields to fear; and Mrs. Schwellenberg—who thinks it treason to say the king is ever at all indisposed—not being able to say all was quite well, forbade a single word being uttered upon the subject The dinners, therefore, became a time of extremest pain; all was ignorance, mystery, and trembling expectation ...
— The Diary and Letters of Madam D'Arblay Volume 2 • Madame D'Arblay

... answered, and again there was silence. At the end of a mile I asked him if the land in Father Madden's parish was poor, and he said no, it was the best land in the country, and then I was certain that there was some mystery attached ...
— The Untilled Field • George Moore

... sarcastically. This is not the voice of a blind and egotistical passion. Let me explain myself if I can. I concede to you that Lilian's character is undeveloped; I concede to you, that amidst the childlike freshness and innocence of her nature, there is at times a strangeness, a mystery, which I have not yet traced to its cause. But I am certain that the intellect is organically as sound as the heart, and that intellect and heart will ultimately—if under happy auspices—blend in that felicitous union which constitutes ...
— A Strange Story, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... insidious scents of the earth, to the open and sterile sea. The thick tangle in the colorless light of the moon, the dimmer portico with its enigmatic figure, were a cunning essence of the existence from which he had fled. Life's traps were set with just such treacheries—perfume and mystery and ...
— Wild Oranges • Joseph Hergesheimer

... least, meseemeth that they would reason well so to do. Remember, I have told thee that there is strong cause to suppose Margaret to be in London. In the suburbs of the city has also appeared, within the last few weeks, that strange and dangerous person, whose very objects are a mystery, save that he is our foe,—Robin of Redesdale. The men of the North have exhibited a spirit of insurrection; a man of that country attends this reputed wizard, and he himself was favoured in past times by Henry of Windsor. ...
— The Last Of The Barons, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... world this mystery: Creation is summed up, O man, in thee; Angel and demon, man and beast, art thou, Yea, thou art all thou dost ...
— The Web of Life • Robert Herrick

... about this, and there followed his story. It was interrupted every few moments by calls for "ham and—," "corn beef and—," "mystery and white wings," and it kept me at the table until daylight. He preluded it by the advice to write it up as a real sea story, but asked that I suppress his name until he had saved enough to get him to Cuba, where he had new plans for advancement. And now, after months ...
— The Grain Ship • Morgan Robertson

... hand of creation having made her, the brain of creation (that inexorable force bent only on perpetuation) saw she was too good a thing to be lost, too innocently persuasive to the passion of men. So it had thrown over her the veil of mystery and pronounced against her the ancient curse that she should be desired of many and yet too soft of her heart, too weak in her defenses, even to foresee the pitfalls that awaited her wandering feet and would ...
— Old Crow • Alice Brown

... actions, his discourse, or his company, discovered one single principle of either Whig or Tory; and that the Lord Lieutenant still continues to admit him; I shall boldly pronounce him ONE OF US: but like a new free-mason, who hath not yet learned all the dialect of the mystery. Neither can he justly be accused of any Tory doctrines, except perhaps some among those few, with which that wicked party was charged, during the height of their power; but have been since transferred for the most solid reasons, to the whole ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, D.D., Vol. VII - Historical and Political Tracts—Irish • Jonathan Swift

... Elizabeth's own hand, without which the wary old seaman absolutely refused to go, doubtless fearing that he might be sacrificed when it suited his mistress's crooked policy. What the order contained was no mystery to the French envoy.[643] Neither party in this solemn farce was deceived, but both wanted peace. Catharine would have been even more vexed than surprised had Elizabeth confessed the truth, and so necessitated a resort to open hostilities.[644] As the honor of the government was satisfied, ...
— History of the Rise of the Huguenots - Volume 2 • Henry Baird

... be no greater. And to tempt him there was this new mystery, this knowledge that he could not miss. It had been vaguely present in his mind when he faced the crowd at Martindale, he remembered now. And the same merciless coldness had been in his hand when he pressed his gun into the ...
— Way of the Lawless • Max Brand

... capering on the green in their fantastic dresses, jingling with hawks' bells, with a boy dressed up as Maid Marian, and the attendant fool rattling his box to collect contributions from the bystanders. The gipsy-women too were already plying their mystery in by-corners of the village, reading the hands of the simple country girls, and no doubt promising them all good husbands and tribes ...
— Bracebridge Hall, or The Humorists • Washington Irving

... house, and I have him sometimes at my table.[2] He was called from England by our Catholic King after the death of Henry, King of that country, and he lives at court with us. He is waiting, from day to day, to be furnished with ships with which he will be able to discover this mystery of nature. I think he will leave on this expedition towards the month of March of next year, 1516. If God gives me life, Your Holiness shall hear from me what happens to him. There are not wanting people in Spain who affirm that Cabotto is not the first discoverer of Terra de Bacallaos; they only ...
— De Orbe Novo, Volume 1 (of 2) - The Eight Decades of Peter Martyr D'Anghera • Trans. by Francis Augustus MacNutt

... nobleness of his person; the antiquity of his birth; his wealth, his unblemished character, and the interest thrown over his name by the reputation of talent and the unpenetrated mystery of his life, all powerfully spoke in his favour to those of the gentler sex, who judge us not only from what we are to others, but from what they imagine we can be to them. From such allurements, however, as from ...
— The Disowned, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... Mrs Keith for the twentieth time. And that was the farthest point reached in the investigation of the mystery. ...
— The Man Upstairs and Other Stories • P. G. Wodehouse

... "your worship has relieved me of a great doubt, and cleared up the point for me in elegant style! Body o' me! is the cause of my soreness such a mystery that there's any need to tell me I am sore everywhere the staff hit me? If it was my ankles that pained me there might be something in going divining why they did, but it is not much to divine that I'm sore where they thrashed me. By ...
— Don Quixote • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... gives worship to God contrary to the manner established by the Church or divine authority, and according to ecclesiastical custom. Hence Ambrose [*Comment. in 1 ad1 Cor. 11:27, quoted in the gloss of Peter Lombard] says: "He is unworthy who celebrates the mystery otherwise than Christ delivered it." For this reason, too, a gloss on Col. 2:23 says that superstition is "the use of human observances under the name ...
— Summa Theologica, Part II-II (Secunda Secundae) • Thomas Aquinas

... brought me into contact with a lawyer. The lawyer enveloped himself in mystery. It seemed to be a professional habit with him to tell nobody anything, if ...
— Poor Miss Finch • Wilkie Collins

... has enveloped all the tract of country in Northwest France through which I have been traveling, driven like one of its victims from place to place. Out of all this welter of individual suffering and from all the fog of mystery which has enshrouded them until now, when the truth may be told, certain big facts with a clear and simple issue will emerge and give ...
— The New York Times Current History of the European War, Vol 1, Issue 4, January 23, 1915 • Various

... saluted and went his way, a bewildered man, for it had never before fallen to his lot to find a raw recruit in the enjoyment of a General's friendship. There was a mystery here, and it kept the regiment in talk for a little while until the interest in it died out; but it made Polson a man of mark from the first. The corporal was back in a minute with a salute to say that Major de Blacquaire was in his own apartment, ...
— VC — A Chronicle of Castle Barfield and of the Crimea • David Christie Murray

... a little surprised at this, as nothing could be more friendly than our intentions towards the newly emancipated Republic. The mystery was, however, soon cleared up. When at Guayaquil, we met with two officers, General Wavell and Colonel O'Reilly, to whom the Chilian Government had given passports to quit the country, not estimating the value of their services as tantamount to their pay. As no secret was ...
— Narrative of Services in the Liberation of Chili, Peru and Brazil, - from Spanish and Portuguese Domination, Volume 1 • Thomas Cochrane, Tenth Earl of Dundonald

... soon as that interest was roused, everything she did appeared marvelous. And, indeed, it was well worth while in watching her to forget the usually pitiful plays which she betrayed by endowing and adorning them with her vitality. The mystery of the woman's body, swayed by a stranger soul, was to Christophe far more moving than the plays in ...
— Jean-Christophe Journey's End • Romain Rolland

... that she had at some time in her life committed the unpardonable sin, as to the nature of which she knew nothing, and which was, therefore, all the more feared, as the nature of it was to her the terrible mystery of ...
— The Autobiography of a Journalist, Volume I • Stillman, William James

... artistic eccentricity, others looked upon it as a wise provision, in view of the many events which were crowding thick and fast in Paris just then, but to all, the real motive of that climax remained a puzzle and a mystery. Anyway, Marguerite St. Just married Sir Percy Blakeney one fine day, just like that, without any warning to her friends, without a SOIREE DE CONTRAT or DINER DE FIANCAILLES or other appurtenances of ...
— The Scarlet Pimpernel • Baroness Orczy

... certain fact at the bottom of this belief of Mrs. Hopkins; and as it world be a very small thing to make a mystery of so simple a matter, the reader shall have the whole benefit of knowing all there is in it,—not quite yet, however, of knowing all that came of it. It was not the mirror trick, of course, which Mrs. Felix Lorraine and other dangerous historical personages have so long made use ...
— The Guardian Angel • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

... explain. Even now I know very little about it. I can tell you WHAT it can do, but the WHY is still as much of a mystery as ever. Briefly, this new element, or maybe it's a compound, I'm not sure which, reacts in a very strange manner to light. Let me show you. That'll beat any ...
— Tom Swift and His Giant Telescope • Victor Appleton

... the way, she is very quiet, I can never get her to talk much about herself. She appears so good that mother is beginning to quote her as an example, and that, you know, always makes one detest a person. I think there is some mystery about her. I'm sorry you will go, for I've lots of questions I'd like to ask you now we ...
— A Day Of Fate • E. P. Roe

... this period concerns his first realization of the grim mystery of death. He went off one day with the son of the wealthiest man in the town to bathe in the creek. Soon after they entered the water the other boy disappeared. Young Edison waited around the spot for half an hour or more, and then, as it was growing dark, ...
— Edison, His Life and Inventions • Frank Lewis Dyer and Thomas Commerford Martin

... silk, where the sea had uncovered them; and sunlight was spilled in pools and tiny furrows: the sea itself grey-green and very still, with streaks and blotches of purple shadow flung by no visible cloud. The beauty and the mystery of them fascinated Roy, who was irresistibly attracted by the thing he could ...
— Far to Seek - A Romance of England and India • Maud Diver

... instructions to show the Bishop the garments in question, whenever it suited him to inspect them. The Bishop was equally amazed, but took exactly the same view about the Duke as the latter had decided upon concerning the Bishop. No doubt the mystery was eventually cleared up, and Bishop and Duke must ...
— Grain and Chaff from an English Manor • Arthur H. Savory

... for hours, then take some stealthy chance to slip away and see him no more for hours or till next day, when his martial music from the log announced him restless for her quick return? There was a woodland mystery here he could not clear. Why should her stay with him grow daily less till it was down to minutes, and one day at last she never came at all. Nor the next, nor the next, and Redruff, wild, careered on lightning ...
— Lobo, Rag and Vixen - Being The Personal Histories Of Lobo, Redruff, Raggylug & Vixen • Ernest Seton-Thompson

... "Here is all the mystery," said she, pointing to a paragraph which announced the failure of a Paris banker. "Mamma lodged all the money she had left ...
— Tales and Novels, Vol. 6 • Maria Edgeworth

... descended into the valley of the Way-lee-way, a considerable tributary of Snake River. Here they met the guide returning from his secret errand. Another private conference was held between him and the old managing chief, who now seemed more inflated than ever with mystery and self-importance. Numerous fresh trails, and various other signs, persuaded Captain Bonneville that there must be a considerable village of Nez Perces in the neighborhood; but as his worthy companion, the old chief, ...
— The Adventures of Captain Bonneville - Digested From His Journal • Washington Irving

... what it means, psychologically, to assimilate even the simplest thoughts of others,—I cannot tell you, and I do not know of any one who can answer this seemingly simple question satisfactorily. We all study, but what happens in our minds when we do study is a mystery. We all do some thinking, and yet the psychology of thinking is the great undiscovered and unexplored region in the field of mental science. Until we know something of the psychology of thinking, we can hope for very ...
— Craftsmanship in Teaching • William Chandler Bagley

... something you are not telling me," she said, with the ever-ready laugh twinkling beneath her dusky lashes. "Some mystery." ...
— The Velvet Glove • Henry Seton Merriman

... this hatred was a mystery. However much he tried to reconcile her, in the end he had ...
— Ditte: Girl Alive! • Martin Andersen Nexo

... universe. In the fabric of habit which they had so laboriously built for themselves, mankind were to remain no longer. And now it is all gone—like an unsubstantial pageant faded; and between us and the old English themselves a gulf of mystery which the prose of the historian will never adequately bridge. They cannot come to us, and our imagination can but feebly penetrate to them. Only among the aisles of the cathedrals, only before the silent figures sleeping ...
— The Life of Froude • Herbert Paul

... anything and with anything—acquire the knowledge of imbibition, that for the first few days it is often necessary to fill a bottle with milk, and, opening his mouth, pour the contents down his throat. The manner, however, by which he is finally educated into the mystery of suction, is by putting his allowance of milk into a large wooden bowl; the nurse then puts her hand into the milk, and, by bending her fingers upwards, makes a rude teat for the calf to grasp in his lips, when the vacuum caused by his suction of ...
— The Book of Household Management • Mrs. Isabella Beeton

... satisfied that he had fathomed the mystery, lay down again in a fit of silent indignation. The boat was put about, but the wind had died away, and the sail flapped idly against the mast. Harold, glad of the opportunity for a little exercise, shipped the sculls and bent ...
— Fort Lafayette or, Love and Secession • Benjamin Wood

... her to open the aching wound in her own heart to a mere child. She sat, till called by the hour to prayer, pondering the question how it is that relations designed for duty and peace become the occasions of the bitterest sin and suffering. The mystery was in no degree cleared up when she was called to prayer—which, however, has the blessed power of solving all ...
— The Hour and the Man - An Historical Romance • Harriet Martineau

... Museum of Berlin; he never goes to the theatre. He appears as little as possible in the streets, but when recognized he is stared at as a wonder. He lives hospitably but plainly, and in a palace with few ornaments or luxuries. He enshrouds himself in mystery, but not in gloom. Few dare approach him, for his manners are brusque and rough, and he is feared more even than he is honored. His aspect is stern and haughty, except when he occasionally unbends. In ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume X • John Lord

... Chief of Detectives Hazen, to report to Newport and assist in clearing the mystery of the crime. With Detectives McDermott and Sheriff Plummer I went to where the body was found, and came to the conclusion that she was murdered there. There was so much blood on the ground that it led me to this belief, and I also found ...
— The Mysterious Murder of Pearl Bryan - or: the Headless Horror. • Unknown

... wise man, saying: "Of the many celebrated trees which the Most High God has created lofty and umbrageous, they call none azad, or free, excepting the cypress, which bears no fruit; what mystery is there in this?" He replied: "Each has its appropriate produce and appointed season, during the continuance of which it is fresh and blooming, and during their absence dry and withered; to neither of which states is the cypress exposed, being always flourishing; and of this nature are the ...
— Persian Literature, Volume 2, Comprising The Shah Nameh, The - Rubaiyat, The Divan, and The Gulistan • Anonymous

... daughters." They alluded to God's creation of a wife from Adam's rib "and for this cause a man shall leave father and mother, and cleave unto his wife, and they two shall be one flesh," and that "this is a great mystery"; they prayed that God would make them fruitful and bless them, like Isaac and Rebecca, Joseph, Moses and Zipporah, and that they might look upon their children's children. "That's all splendid," thought Kitty, catching the words, "all that's just as it should be," and a smile ...
— Anna Karenina • Leo Tolstoy

... section beginning sonorously, ending in a languorous whisper. They are hunting the goals that they understand:— San Francisco and the brown sea-sand. My goal is the mystery the beggars win. I am caught in the web the night-winds spin. The edge of the wheat-ridge speaks to me. I talk with the leaves of the mulberry tree. And now I hear, as I sit all alone In the dusk, by another big Santa Fe stone, The souls of the tall corn gathering round And the gay little ...
— The Congo and Other Poems • Vachel Lindsay

... face was so unearthly and a thing so full of mystery, that her Grace's heart stood still, for in some strange way she ...
— A Lady of Quality • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... mystery to me how folks get along with so little praying. Their hearts must be better than mine, or something. What is it? But if God sees that the desire of my whole heart is to-night—has been all day—towards Himself, will He not know this ...
— The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss • George L. Prentiss

... fever,—of unrest. Brain in a whirl!—Marjorie, Paul, Isis, beetle, mesmerism, in delirious jumble. Love's upsetting!—in itself a sufficiently severe disease; but when complications intervene, suggestive of mystery and novelties, so that you do not know if you are moving in an atmosphere of dreams or of frozen facts,—if, then, your temperature does not rise, like that rocket of M. Verne's,—which reached the moon, then you are a freak of an entirely genuine kind, and if the surgeons ...
— The Beetle - A Mystery • Richard Marsh

... his voice, and after weeping in the garden, heard Love Himself call her by name. Well, if the resurrection of God was revealed in Palestine, it was here among the Tuscan hills that man rose from the dead and first saw the beauty of the flowers and the mystery of the hills. Here, too, is holy land if you but knew it, full of old forgotten gods, out-fashioned deities beside whose shrines, though they be hushed, you may still hear the prayers of worshippers, the tears ...
— Florence and Northern Tuscany with Genoa • Edward Hutton

... comprehension, chants the praises of love which Plato puts into his mouth in the Symposium. In conclusion, Urania sums up the mystery of love and genius: ...
— The Poet's Poet • Elizabeth Atkins

... feels a sense of awe in her soul when she bends over her own infant child; but in the case of Mary we may be sure that the awe was unusual, because of the mystery of the child's birth. In the annunciation the angel had said to her, "That which is to be born shall be called holy, the Son of God." Then the night of her child's birth there was a wondrous vision ...
— Personal Friendships of Jesus • J. R. Miller

... have said that it is not so much laborious effort we hear as the natural falling into place of words heavy with thought and feeling. Here it is that translation must so often come short of faithful reproduction. The choice of words in relation to rhythm and euphony is a mystery difficult to interpret even in the poet's own language. If we try to analyze the verse of great poets, we frequently find, beyond what is evidently the product of conscious design, effects of suggestion and sound which could not be ...
— Poems and Songs • Bjornstjerne Bjornson

... it! As she eyed him, her childish mind searching the mystery, yet keeping its own secret, Corona resolved to steal down to the garden one of these fine mornings ...
— Brother Copas • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... to Shiloh," even the most famous Jewish traveller of the middle ages, Benjamin of Tudela, did not disdain to follow up the "traces of salvation." Nor has interest waned in our generation. Whenever we hear of a Jewish community whose settlement in its home is tinged with mystery, we straightway seek to establish its connection with the ten lost tribes. They have been placed in Armenia, Syria, and Mesopotamia, where the Nestorian Christians, calling themselves sons of Israel, live to the number of two ...
— Jewish Literature and Other Essays • Gustav Karpeles

... not care a great deal about that, but he was more than ever in a hurry to see the end of his supercargo business. The fact was that an air of something like mystery appeared to be gathering around him, and there is a tremendous fascination in anything mysterious. What if he were now getting right in behind the war, after a fashion, and at the same time into the darkest kind of revolution or rebellion ...
— Ahead of the Army • W. O. Stoddard

... is, to the artist, a true Art-life is difficult of attainment. In the midst of illumination, there is the mystery: the subjective mystery, out of which issue the germs—like seeds floated from unknown shores—of his imaginings; the objective mystery, which yields to him, through obvious, yet unexplained harmonies, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 27, January, 1860 • Various

... parody of the Divine love for the human soul. It is not the same relationship on an indefinitely extended scale, but only a somewhat similar relationship, the limits of whose similarity are hidden in mystery. But when a man is so thoroughly in love with his metaphor as Patmore was, he is tempted at times to press it in every detail, and to forget that it is "but one acre in the infinite field of spiritual suggestion;" that, less full and perfect metaphors of the ...
— The Faith of the Millions (2nd series) • George Tyrrell

... your heart (as it is sure to be everywhere in Italy) you return (as one continually does) to the Arcades, and turning to the left you follow them till you come to Via S. Lorenzo, in which is the Duomo all of white and black marble, a jewel with mystery in its heart, hidden away ...
— Florence and Northern Tuscany with Genoa • Edward Hutton

... of the Four Brethren"; it consisted of Zinzendorf, Friedrich de Watteville, and Pastors Rothe and Schfer; and its object was to proclaim to the world, by means of a league of men devoted to Christ, "that mystery and charm of the Incarnation which was not yet sufficiently recognized in the Church." He had several methods of work. As he wished to reach the young folk of noble rank, he had a school for noblemen's sons built on the Hutberg, and a school for noblemen's ...
— History of the Moravian Church • J. E. Hutton

... soul by our wise, holy, and good Creator. This is not His work. This is no part of the furniture with which mankind were set up for an everlasting existence. "God saw everything that he had made, and behold it was very good." (Gen. i. 31). We acknowledge the mystery that overhangs the union and connection of all men with the first man. We know that this corruption of man's nature, and this sinfulness of his heart, does indeed, appear at the very beginning of his individual life. ...
— Sermons to the Natural Man • William G.T. Shedd

... under cover; but as no fresh approaches added to my mystery and fear, I sallied forth, and kept the route to Putney's, with ears erect and expectant pulses. I had gone but a quarter of a mile, when I discerned, through the gathering gloom, a black, misshapen object, standing in the middle of the road. As it seemed motionless, I ventured closer, when the ...
— Campaigns of a Non-Combatant, - and His Romaunt Abroad During the War • George Alfred Townsend

... special reference to Doctor Long Ghost and myself, he assured us generally that, if there were any among us studiously inclined, he would take great pleasure in teaching such the whole art and mystery of navigation, including the ...
— Omoo: Adventures in the South Seas • Herman Melville

... repose, and comfort, and peace. When we meet its mistress we are welcomed in a low, gentle, cordial tone of voice, and in a manner which radiates honesty and unaffected simplicity. We discover the source of the unusual atmosphere. It is herself, the wife, the mother, the home-maker. She is the mystery of the ideal home. Each day her divine art grows more perfect because her heart is consecrated to the work. She may not be surrounded with material splendor. The miracle is in the soul she possesses. Love is the magic wand she yields. She loves her home, her children, ...
— The Eugenic Marriage, Vol. 3 (of 4) - A Personal Guide to the New Science of Better Living and Better Babies • W. Grant Hague

... first, that she would not so much as look at bottled stout, and kept to gruel through the month, has agued me, Mrs. Harris. But, ma'am,' I says to her, 'talk not of Margate, for if I do go anywhere it is elsewheres, and not there.' 'Sairey,' says Mrs. Harris solemn, 'whence this mystery? If I have ever deceived the hardest-working, soberest, and best of women, mention it.' ... 'Mrs. Harris, then,' I says, 'I have heard as there is an expedition going down to Manjester and Liverpool a playacting, If I goes anywhere for change it is along with that.' Mrs. Harris clasps her ...
— History of English Humour, Vol. 2 (of 2) • Alfred Guy Kingan L'Estrange

... of his fellow passengers much of the romantic history of the southern whaling stations. He was able also to fill in his map with the names of capes and other coastal features as they came successively into sight: "In the company of these men I soon found the whole of the mystery which had hung over the southern islands passing away; every place being as well known by them as the northern ...
— A History of the English Church in New Zealand • Henry Thomas Purchas

... Headless Horseman, that's a comic ghost story. And Rip Van Winkle—consider what humour, and what good-humour, there is in the telling of his meeting with the goblin crew of Kendrick Hudson's men! A still better example of this American way of dealing with legend and mystery is the marvelous tale ...
— Masterpieces of Mystery In Four Volumes - Mystic-Humorous Stories • Various

... was the first member of Parliament who represented Burnley. I met him in London in 1854, and remember a description he gave of an old gentleman who was then living permanently at the Tavistock Hotel. That old gentleman was a perfect mystery; no one knew where he came from: he never either wrote or received a letter, he had no settled occupation, but read all the papers, and used to swear aloud quite dreadfully when he found any fact or opinion that displeased him. He compensated ...
— Philip Gilbert Hamerton • Philip Gilbert Hamerton et al

... essential to know whether the fugitive had been supplied with any money and whether he had given any indication of his plans. "I feel quite certain that you have had a talk with him lately," he said. "I thought you were going to do what you could to help us clear up this mystery. Why deny a ...
— The Grell Mystery • Frank Froest

... vale thou'rt come, To woo me, darling, in my home:— But my mother sleeps hard by, And my father near doth lie; Should I but rise, I'll wake her ear; Should I go out, then he will hear:— The night hath fled! it may not be, For our love's a mystery! ...
— Japanese Literature - Including Selections from Genji Monogatari and Classical - Poetry and Drama of Japan • Various

... number of thrilling contests at basketball and in addition, the solving of a mystery which had bothered the high school authorities for ...
— Bunny Brown and his Sister Sue Giving a Show • Laura Lee Hope

... questioned many prisoners and spies; she is not at the Pompeian camp with her uncle. Neither can I discover that her kinsmen among the enemy themselves know where she is. And to this is added that other mystery: whither has my Aunt Fabia vanished? How much of the account of those who followed her to the river dock is to be believed—that pirates saved her from Gabinius, and then abducted her? Upon all, my clever freedman Agias is gone—gone without ...
— A Friend of Caesar - A Tale of the Fall of the Roman Republic. Time, 50-47 B.C. • William Stearns Davis

... fancy," interposed Gertie, breaking the pause, "that I'm the best one to explain." She was standing beside old Mrs. Douglass, and as she spoke she gripped at the back of the wicker chair. "I don't like this mystery where I am concerned. Lady Douglass came to the door of the billiard-room whilst Mr. Langham and me—Mr. Langham and I were there. The door was locked. She had ...
— Love at Paddington • W. Pett Ridge

... fit subject, my first Care is to make him to sound forth a Voice, without which, almost all labour is lost, but that one point, whereby Deaf Persons do discern a Voice from a Mute Breath, is a great Mystery of Art; and if I may have leave to say so, it is the Hearing of Deaf Persons, or at least equivolent thereunto, viz. that trembling Motion and Titillation, which they perceive in their own Throat, whilst they of their own accord do give forth a Voice; ...
— The Talking Deaf Man - A Method Proposed, Whereby He Who is Born Deaf, May Learn to Speak, 1692 • John Conrade Amman

... was Fingal?—there was the rub. That was a profound mystery to Barny, which, until discovered, must hold him in the vile bondage of inferiority. The plain-dealing reader would say, "Couldn't he ask?" No, no; that would never do for Barny: that would be an open admission of ignorance his soul was above, and ...
— Stories of Comedy • Various

... Don't say such a thing—till you know!" she cried, with a certain shrillness which warned him of an unfathomed seriousness in the fact. He sat up as if better to confront the mystery. "I have been at her hotel, and she has been telling me that she's just come from Berlin, and that Mr. Kenby's been there, and—Now I won't have you making a joke of it, or breaking out about it, as if it were not a thing to be looked for; though of course with the others on our hands you're not ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... old man would never have solved the mystery of the arrival of the big consignment of the weed had it not been accompanied by a letter from the two boys in which all ...
— The Launch Boys' Adventures in Northern Waters • Edward S. Ellis

... John Randolph of Virginia takes us to the heart of this mystery. He could not have correctly answered the question we have proposed, but he was an answer to it. Born when George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, George Mason, and James Madison were Virginia farmers, and surviving to ...
— Famous Americans of Recent Times • James Parton

... totally unable to comprehend how the excitement of certain nerves should generate feeling—while, in the production of consciousness by physical agents acting on physical structure, we come to an absolute mystery never to be solved; it is yet quite possible for us to know by observation what are the successive forms which this absolute mystery may take. We see that there are three channels along which nerves in a state of ...
— Essays on Education and Kindred Subjects - Everyman's Library • Herbert Spencer

... calf! But you are all the same, blaspheme and jeer At any mystery beyond your sphere Of beer, and beef, and beer, and beef, and beer. Now you have frightened ...
— Household Gods • Aleister Crowley

... to some one within. The door closed again, the chain rattled once more, the door re-opened, and into the house of mystery they walked. ...
— Frank Merriwell's Pursuit - How to Win • Burt L. Standish

... a heavy negro type of Maori countenance, and about as much animation, mentally or physically, as a cow. She was given to brooding; in fact, she brooded all the time. She brooded all day over her school work, but did it fairly well. How the previous teachers had taught her all she knew was a mystery to the new one. There had been a tragedy in August's family when she was a child, and the affair seemed to have cast a gloom over the lives of the entire family, for the lowering brooding cloud was on all their faces. August would take to the bush when things went wrong at home, ...
— Over the Sliprails • Henry Lawson

... great traditions of womanhood. One presents the Madonna brooding over the mystery of motherhood; the other, more confusedly, tells of the acolyte, the priestess, the clairvoyante of the unknown gods. This latter exists complete in herself, a personality as definite and as significant as a symbol. She is behind all the processes of art, ...
— The Hours of Fiammetta - A Sonnet Sequence • Rachel Annand Taylor

... that had once been a street of moving ways. He was more interested in pointing out the parts of the Council House, the distribution of the besiegers. In a little while the civil contest that had convulsed London was no longer a mystery to Graham. It was no tumultuous revolt had occurred that night, no equal warfare, but a splendidly organised coup d'etat. Ostrog's grasp of details was astonishing; he seemed to know the business of even the smallest knot of black and red specks ...
— The Sleeper Awakes - A Revised Edition of When the Sleeper Wakes • H.G. Wells

... move and did not offer to shake hands, so he stood on the hearthrug and spread out his own to the blaze, looking down at her with bright, audacious eyes. He thought he had not yet seen her so beautiful. There was an extraordinary depth and mystery in her look, he thought, as it rested for a moment on his face, and she had never yet dropped her eyelashes as she now did when her eyes met his. We know she was very hungry, and there was no strength in her at all. Not only did her eyelashes drop, but ...
— The Princess Priscilla's Fortnight • Elizabeth von Arnim

... him. In even the smallest of the towns, inhabited only by farm laborers, a quaint interesting civilization was being developed. Men worked hard but were much in the open air and had time to think. Their minds reached out toward the solution of the mystery of existence. The schoolmaster and the country lawyer read Tom Paine's "Age of Reason" and Bellamy's "Looking Backward." They discussed these books with their fellows. There was a feeling, ill expressed, that America had something real and spiritual to offer to the rest of the ...
— Poor White • Sherwood Anderson

... unusual," I said in Russian, by way of hinting that I belonged to the category of the willfully deaf. "Accept my compliments on your knowledge of French and of Russian. But be so good as to explain to me this mystery before I contribute." ...
— Russian Rambles • Isabel F. Hapgood

... called to ask Nan to go with him to the Lone Lake picnic the next day. At this request Nan dropped her eyes and murmured that she was sorry, but he was too late—she had promised to go with somebody else. There was no need of Nan's making such a mystery about it. The somebody else was her only cousin, Ned Bennett, who had had a quarrel with his own girl; the latter lived at Lone Lake, and Ned had coaxed Nan to go over with him and try her hand at patching ...
— Lucy Maud Montgomery Short Stories, 1904 • Lucy Maud Montgomery



Words linked to "Mystery" :   story, perplexity, mysterious, closed book, detective story, mystify



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