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Overwhelm   /ˌoʊvərwˈɛlm/  /ˌoʊvərhwˈɛlm/   Listen
Overwhelm

verb
(past & past part. overwhelmed; pres. part. overwhelming)
1.
Overcome, as with emotions or perceptual stimuli.  Synonyms: overcome, overpower, overtake, sweep over, whelm.
2.
Charge someone with too many tasks.  Synonyms: deluge, flood out.
3.
Cover completely or make imperceptible.  Synonyms: drown, submerge.  "The noise drowned out her speech"
4.
Overcome by superior force.  Synonyms: overmaster, overpower.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Overwhelm" Quotes from Famous Books



... this estimate as to the number of troops necessary, he suggestively adds that "in proportion to the numbers used will be the lives saved; and as we have such numbers pressing to be allowed to serve, might it not be well to overwhelm and conquer as much by the show of force as by ...
— The Great Conspiracy, Complete • John Alexander Logan

... the name of Maskull, and the other in that of Nightspore. That's nearly all that I know about them, so don't overwhelm ...
— A Voyage to Arcturus • David Lindsay

... taken against the impending danger. The simple establishing of a front of two regiments toward the west when half his command would hardly have been sufficient, unless protected by works of some kind, was perfectly idle as a barrier against the torrent about to overwhelm the Eleventh Corps. So far as I can ascertain, only two companies were thrown out on picket, and they were unsupported by grand guards, so that they did not detain the enemy a moment, and the rebels and our pickets all came in together. Great stress has been laid upon the fact that Howard did have ...
— Chancellorsville and Gettysburg - Campaigns of the Civil War - VI • Abner Doubleday

... release. Look at the sufferings which come upon us from our narrow and limited experience and sympathy. We each stand quite alone, a solitary unit, a pygmy in the world. What good fortune can we expect? The great life of the world rushes by, and we are in danger each instant that it will overwhelm us or even utterly destroy us. There is no defence to be offered to it; no opposition army can be set up, because in this life every man fights his own battle against every other man, and no two can be united under the ...
— Light On The Path and Through the Gates of Gold • Mabel Collins

... crucial moments of life our minds fasten upon the locality where joys or sorrows overwhelm us. Charles noticed with minute attention the box-borders of the little garden, the yellow leaves as they fluttered down, the dilapidated walls, the gnarled fruit-trees,—picturesque details which were destined ...
— Eugenie Grandet • Honore de Balzac

... gallantry, and the latter perhaps of a kind, which in England would not be deemed very innocent. The champagne then goes round, and the ladies drink as much as the gentlemen, that is to say, enough to exhilarate, not to overwhelm the animal spirits. A French woman with three or four glasses of wine in her head, would certainly make an English one stare; but France is the land of love, and it is an universal maxim that life is insipid ...
— Travels through the South of France and the Interior of Provinces of Provence and Languedoc in the Years 1807 and 1808 • Lt-Col. Pinkney

... fury; the waves grew higher and mightier, and became rushing hills of water, overwhelming, irresistible. To me, quailing in my frail bark, in all the consciousness of helplessness and ruin, it seemed as though the winds and the waves were really sentient beings combining to overwhelm me, and increasing their ...
— The Bushman - Life in a New Country • Edward Wilson Landor

... been many times invaded, the Welsh have never been conquered. Powerful tribes, like the Romans, Saxons and Normans, have tried to overwhelm them. Even when English and German kings attempted to crush their spirit and blot out their language and literature, the Welsh resisted ...
— Welsh Fairy Tales • William Elliot Griffis

... it, as he plumed himself upon his adventure, was a certain pestering consciousness that all was not so well with him as observers might guess. But he resolutely put this away each time it threatened to overwhelm him. He would cross no bridge until he came to it. He even combated this undercurrent of sanity by wording part of an interview with himself some day to ...
— Merton of the Movies • Harry Leon Wilson

... "You confound me, you overwhelm me!" said Khlobuev, staring at his companion in open-eyed astonishment. "I can scarcely believe that your words are true, seeing that for such a trust an active, indefatigable man would be necessary. Moreover, how could I leave my wife and children ...
— Dead Souls • Nikolai Vasilievich Gogol

... relays through all the subsequent periods affirm their own contemporaries to have attained. Every decennium is regularly worse than that which precedes it, until the mind is perfectly confounded by the Pelion upon Ossa which must overwhelm the last term of the twenty-five. It is the mere necessity of a logical sorites, that such a horrible race of villains as the men of the twenty-fifth decennium ought not to be suffered to breathe. Now, the whole error arises ...
— The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. 1 (2 vols) • Thomas De Quincey

... present. Politics, trade, and art were now represented. With these she was abundantly supplied for all her future career. But that was not to be, the gate was still open, and the destructive influence of Greece was soon to send in a host of new deities, who were destined not only to overwhelm the old Roman gods—which in itself we might forgive—but to sap away the old Roman virtues, to the maintenance of which the atmosphere of these old gods was essential. The forerunner of this influence was in himself ...
— The Religion of Numa - And Other Essays on the Religion of Ancient Rome • Jesse Benedict Carter

... consequent danger of destruction. On one occasion, says Kane: "We are lifted bodily eighteen inches out of water. The hummocks are reared up around the ship, so as to rise a couple of feet above our bulwarks, five feet above our deck. They are very often ten and twelve feet high, and threaten to overwhelm us. Add to this, darkness, snow, cold, and the absolute destitution of surrounding shores." The temperature fell below zero and the ships seemed destined to winter in Wellington Channel, but fortunately a strong northwest gale, in ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 6 of 8 • Various

... thing at a time, if you please. Positively you overwhelm me with surprise. In one breath you tell me you are 'John Kennedy,' and then, without giving a poor girl a chance, you say you are the ...
— Golden Stories - A Selection of the Best Fiction by the Foremost Writers • Various

... harsh, hard, and solid, for their purpose, which they relinquish, and go to a fresh spot that works more freely? Or may they not in other places fall in with a soil as much too loose and mouldering, liable to flounder, and threatening to overwhelm them ...
— The Natural History of Selborne, Vol. 2 • Gilbert White

... them of the approach of Wieroos. Together they went to the edge of the wood and looked up to see five red-robed creatures dropping slowly in ever-lessening spirals toward their little amphitheater. With no attempt at concealment they came, sure of their ability to overwhelm these two fugitives, and with the fullest measure of self-confidence they landed in the clearing but a few yards from the man and ...
— Out of Time's Abyss • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... those women who appear to have been born women by mistake—who are always chafing at their unfortunate fate, and endeavouring to emulate—even to overwhelm—men; in which latter effort they are too frequently successful. She was a tall elegant woman of about thirty years of age, with a decidedly handsome face, though somewhat sharp of feature. She possessed ...
— The Norsemen in the West • R.M. Ballantyne

... shadow of the top of the palm tree resteth (for a short time) at its base. Perform various kinds of sacrifices, and enjoy, and give O Bharata, everything thou likest. On the fourteenth year hence, a great calamity will overwhelm thee.'" ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Part 2 • Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa

... you see the Golden River issue, and shall cast into the stream at its source three drops of holy water, for him, and for him only, the river shall turn to gold. But no one failing in his first can succeed in a second attempt; and if any one shall cast unholy water into the river it will overwhelm him, and he will become a black stone." So saying, the King of the Golden River turned away and deliberately walked into the center of the hottest flame of the furnace. His figure became red, white, transparent, dazzling,—a blaze of intense light,—rose, trembled, and disappeared. The King of ...
— Types of Children's Literature • Edited by Walter Barnes

... challenge British maritime supremacy. The great military machine of the French army was then turned eastward against the armies of the coalition which England, under Pitt, was forming; and in a series of astonishing campaigns it was used to beat down the Austrians in 1805 at Austerlitz; to overwhelm the Prussians in 1806 at Jena and Auerstadt; and to force the Russians, after {190} a severe winter campaign in East Prussia, to come to terms in 1807. Napoleon and the Tsar, Alexander, meeting on the bridge ...
— The Wars Between England and America • T. C. Smith

... Burke from the same cause, added to his overpowering autocracy of temper—were but too much calculated to throw suspicion on the cause in which they were employed, and to produce a reaction in favor of the person whom they were meant to overwhelm. "Rogo vos, Judices,"—Mr. Hastings might well have said,—"si iste disertus est, ideo me damnari oportet?" [Footnote: Seneca, Controvers. lib. ...
— Memoirs of the Life of Rt. Hon. Richard Brinsley Sheridan Vol 2 • Thomas Moore

... On the 12th of February a strong gale with a heavy sea got up, and the next day the wind and swell so increased that Columbus was aware that a heavy tempest was approaching. It soon burst upon them with frightful violence, increasing still more on the 14th, the waves threatening every moment to overwhelm their battered barks. After laying to for three hours they were compelled to scud before the wind. During the darkness of the night the Pinta was lost sight of. The Admiral steered as well as he could to the north-east to approach the coast of Spain, showing lights to the Pinta; but no ...
— Notable Voyagers - From Columbus to Nordenskiold • W.H.G. Kingston and Henry Frith

... of heredity must be occult and complex. The offspring of a rebellious and disobedient child, is certainly entitled to no filial instincts; and some day the strain will tell, and you will overwhelm your mother with ingratitude, black as that ...
— At the Mercy of Tiberius • August Evans Wilson

... determination. Indeed, when a man is working through a hard state, in gaining his freedom from nervous fears, these imps seem to hold councils of war, and to devise new plans of attack in order to take him by surprise and overwhelm him in an emergency. But every sharp attack, if met with quiet "willingness," brings a defeat for the assailants, until finally the resistant imps are conquered and disappear. Occasionally a stray imp will return, and try to arouse ...
— The Freedom of Life • Annie Payson Call

... must be done, and both the servants and the assistant must receive absolute commands from you. The stimulus of conversation suspends the terror that haunts my mind; but when I am alone the horrors I have suffered from laudanum, the degradation, the blighted utility, almost overwhelm me. If (as I feel for the first time a soothing confidence it will prove) I should leave you restored to my moral and bodily health, it is not myself only that will love and honor you; every friend I have (and, thank God! in spite of this wretched vice ...
— The Opium Habit • Horace B. Day

... does not reason sufficiently declare, that there is no real good which you should desire too ardently, or the possession of which you should allow to transport you: and that there is no evil that should be able to overwhelm you, or the suspicion of which should distract you? and that all these things assume too melancholy or too cheerful an appearance through our own error? But if fools find this error lessened by time, so that, though the cause remains the same, they are not affected in ...
— The Academic Questions • M. T. Cicero

... yet even he agreed with Arius in a philosophical doctrine of the unity of God which was inconsistent with a real incarnation. Even the noble work of Origen had helped to strengthen the philosophical influences which were threatening to overwhelm the definite historic revelation. Tertullian had long since warned the churches of the danger; but a greater than Tertullian was needed now to free them from their bondage to philosophy. Are we ...
— The Arian Controversy • H. M. Gwatkin

... cries the count, holding up both his hands in remonstrance; "you overwhelm me. I require no such inducements; they horrify me. Enrica Guinigi is sufficient in herself—so bright a jewel ...
— The Italians • Frances Elliot

... nearly met with a most serious accident. We were all sitting or standing about the stern of the vessel, admiring the magnificent dark blue billows following us, with their curling white crests, mountains high. Each wave, as it approached, appeared as if it must overwhelm us, instead of which, it rushed grandly by, rolling and shaking us from stem to stern, and sending ...
— A Voyage in the 'Sunbeam' • Annie Allnut Brassey

... Bonaparte; he had saved our liberty, but he has since destroyed it by the reestablishment of the nobility and by the Concordat. The society of the 'Philadelphi' has as yet no well-defined plans for preventing the evils with which ambition will continue to overwhelm France; but when peace is restored we shall see if it is impossible to force Bonaparte to restore republican institutions, and meanwhile we are overcome by grief and despair. The brave chief of the 'Philadelphi', the pure ...
— The Private Life of Napoleon Bonaparte, Complete • Constant

... overtaken by a sandstorm many miles from the camp, and had struggled on till absolutely exhausted, not daring to lie down to rest lest the fast whirling sand should overwhelm him; and when late at night the wind had fallen he was hopelessly and utterly lost, and had thrown himself down in a sheltered spot deep hollowed out by the wind between two gigantic dunes, and had at once fallen into the deep sleep ...
— A Rip Van Winkle Of The Kalahari - Seven Tales of South-West Africa • Frederick Cornell

... And Lenore returned the greeting calmly, watching him steadily and waiting for the nameless sensations she had imagined would attend this meeting. But whatever these might be, they did not come to overwhelm her. The gladness of his voice, as he had spoken so eagerly to her father about the debt, had made her feel very kindly toward him. It might have been natural for a young man to resent this dragging debt. But he was ...
— The Desert of Wheat • Zane Grey

... vanity overwhelm him to get recognition of some kind from Bellydown, who disdained even ...
— Tales of the Chesapeake • George Alfred Townsend

... again alone, sat down at a turn in the path, just out of sight of the house, and waited. Soon she saw, with a certain grim satisfaction, Zora and Bles emerging from the swamp engaged in earnest conversation. Here was an opportunity to overwhelm both with an unforgettable reprimand. She rose before them like ...
— The Quest of the Silver Fleece - A Novel • W. E. B. Du Bois

... verse—"I have nourished and brougth up children, and they have rebelled against me,"—when the claims of God, and their violation and rejection of them; His forbearance, and their ingratitude, appeared to overwhelm them; they sobbed aloud, ...
— Famous Islands and Memorable Voyages • Anonymous

... be sleepy. The storm which was not yet in the sky had already begun to weigh on her. She felt a most unbearable heaviness which seemed to overwhelm her, and at the same time a nervous uneasiness took possession of her. The electricity in the air was penetrating ...
— Rene Mauperin • Edmond de Goncourt and Jules de Goncourt

... "Indeed you overwhelm me, sirs," said she, smiling. "Your impatience shall be satisfied, you shall passion and languish no longer!" And now as I bowed above her hand came her whisper, "I go to sing for ...
— Peregrine's Progress • Jeffery Farnol

... only excuse for marriage, and the only thing which will carry one safely through the troubles and vexations of married life, so love for an occupation is the only thing which will carry one safely and surely through the troubles which overwhelm ninety-five out of every one hundred who choose the life of a merchant, and very many in ...
— Pushing to the Front • Orison Swett Marden

... they could not have failed to see that tilting against foreigners would ruin us in the whole Northwest. New Hampshire and Ohio should forbear tilting against the fugitive-slave law in such way as to utterly overwhelm us in Illinois with the charge of enmity to the Constitution itself. Kansas, in her confidence that she can be saved to freedom on 'squatter sovereignty,' ought not to forget that to prevent the spread and nationalization of slavery is a national concern, and must be attended ...
— Abraham Lincoln, A History, Volume 2 • John George Nicolay and John Hay

... added she, "dear Monsieur d'Artagnan, do not overwhelm me to-day, I again implore you! I am like the branch torn from the trunk, I no longer hold to anything in this world—a current drags me on, I know not whither. I love madly, even to the point of coming to tell it, wretch that I am, over the ashes of the dead, and I do not blush for ...
— The Man in the Iron Mask • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... her for giving way to grief. "It is like rebellion—like rebellion," he denounced, turning away his head to wipe a tear hastily; and I wondered and thanked God that I should be a comfort to that tender young girl, whose lot on earth had been difficult, whose sorrow was great but could not overwhelm her indomitable spirit, which held a promise of sweetness ...
— Romance • Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer

... change the direction of the development of the anomaly during the time of germination. [398] The result of my attempt has shown that the choice of the seeds has a manifest influence upon the ultimate development of the monstrosity, but that this influence is not strong enough to overwhelm all other factors. ...
— Species and Varieties, Their Origin by Mutation • Hugo DeVries

... upon the Church and the world! They appear to us as simply absurd, and the result of precocious knavery; not so to the people of that generation. They were looked upon as fearful demonstrations of diabolical power, and preludes to the coming of Satan, with his infernal confederates, to overwhelm the land. The imaginations of all were excited, and their apprehensions morbidly aroused. The very air was filled with rumors, fancies, and fears. The ministers sounded the alarm from their pulpits. The magistrates sharpened the sword of justice. The deputy-governor of the colony, Danforth, ...
— Salem Witchcraft, Volumes I and II • Charles Upham

... is still unmistakably evident to the most casual eye; and, from the anxious care with which Barbara looks away from me, when she addresses me, I can perceive that she has observed it, as, indeed, how could she fail to do? If Tou Tou were here, she would overwhelm me with officious questions—would stare me crazy, but Barbara averts her eyes, and ...
— Nancy - A Novel • Rhoda Broughton

... neck, is tied up, and just going to be turned off, and has a reprieve brought to him—I say, I do not wonder that they bring a surgeon with it, to let him blood that very moment they tell him of it, that the surprise may not drive the animal spirits from the heart, and overwhelm him. ...
— The Century Vocabulary Builder • Creever & Bachelor

... impossible not to laugh, and Maurice swallowed his impatience long enough to say, "Jacobus, you overwhelm me!" Then he took his departure, holding the gift between a reluctant thumb and finger. "Funny little beggar," he said to himself, and pitched the stub into the gutter from which Jacky had salvaged it; he didn't look back to see his son hanging over ...
— The Vehement Flame • Margaret Wade Campbell Deland

... took up a little frock, half made, with the needle hanging to it. The table-drawer had fallen out, and with it the large account-book, the weekly bills, and a sheet of paper covered with figures, and blotted and blistered with tears. The sight seemed to overwhelm him more than all. 'Crying over these! My Violet crying! Oh! what have I ...
— Heartsease - or Brother's Wife • Charlotte M. Yonge

... table. Prayer meeting and supper she had forgotten entirely. The minister had not come home for his evening meal, and food was furthest from the housekeeper's thoughts. What should she do? What ought she to do? How could she avert the disaster so certain to overwhelm those two young people the moment their ...
— Keziah Coffin • Joseph C. Lincoln

... made on purpose to frighten superstitious people into fits of piety and devotion, nor to overwhelm devoted cities with destruction; a volcano should be considered as a spiracle to the subterranean furnace, in order to prevent the unnecessary elevation of land, and fatal effects of earthquakes; and we may rest assured, ...
— Theory of the Earth, Volume 1 (of 4) • James Hutton

... first, that the enemy, reinforced from Caimanera or Guantanamo city, would assemble in force on the slopes of the eastern hills, creep up through the scrub until they were within a short distance of the camp, and then overwhelm the marines in a sudden rush-assault. They were known to have six thousand regulars at Guantanamo city, only about fifteen miles away, and it was quite within the bounds of possibility that they might detach a large ...
— Campaigning in Cuba • George Kennan

... enough, the factories had to work on the designs they had, and thus for a long time after the outbreak of hostilities standardisation was an impossibility. The versatility of a Latin race in a measure compensated for this; from the outset, the Germans tried to overwhelm the French Air Force, but failed, since they had not the numerical superiority, nor—this equally a determining factor—the versatility and resource of the French pilots. They calculated on a 50 per cent superiority to ensure success; they needed more nearly 400 per cent, ...
— A History of Aeronautics • E. Charles Vivian

... mountains they came pouring into Bohemia. Prague was the King's first mark; but the ulterior object was probably Vienna. At Prague lay Marshal Brown with one great army. Daun, the most cautious and fortunate of the Austrian captains, was advancing with another. Frederic determined to overwhelm Brown before Daun should arrive. On the sixth of May was fought, under those walls which, a hundred and thirty years before, had witnessed the victory of the Catholic league and the flight of the unhappy Palatine, a battle more bloody than any which Europe saw during the long interval between ...
— Critical and Historical Essays Volume 2 • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... demeanor would have gone for much, and indeed it is not at all impossible that a leader of a different stamp from James might even then have so inspired the Highland clansmen, and so made use of his opportunity, as to overwhelm Argyll and the Hanoverian forces, and turn the whole crisis to his favor. But James was peculiarly unsuited to an enterprise of the kind. He had graceful manners, a mild, serene temper, and great power ...
— A History of the Four Georges, Volume I (of 4) • Justin McCarthy

... preceded by an intense artillery fire. It was to be the fiercest rain of shells since the Americans had come to the front lines. Then the infantry, supported by tanks and aeroplanes, would follow, going over in waves which it was hoped would overwhelm the Germans. ...
— Air Service Boys in the Big Battle • Charles Amory Beach

... and, on a second attempt to look out, he succeeded, and saw indeed an astonishing sight. The sea or waves appeared to be ten or fifteen feet in height of unbroken water, and every approaching billow seemed as if it would overwhelm our vessel, but she continued to rise upon the waves and to fall between the seas in a very wonderful manner. It seemed to be only those seas which caught her in the act of rising which struck her with so much violence and threw such quantities of water aft. On deck there ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 16 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... fitness must obtain in the accompaniment. The office of the accompaniment is not merely to keep the singer on the pitch. It must help to tell the story by strengthening the mood of the poem. It must not be trivial or insincere, neither must it overwhelm and thus draw the attention of the listeners to itself ...
— The Head Voice and Other Problems - Practical Talks on Singing • D. A. Clippinger

... war in him—scorn, and pity, and wounded love, and pride too proud to sue for a gratitude denied, or quote a sacrifice that was almost without parallel in generosity, all held him speechless. To overwhelm the sinner before him with reproaches, to count and claim the immeasurable debts due to him, to upbraid and to revile the wretched weakness that had left the soil of a guilt not his own to rest upon him—to do ...
— Under Two Flags • Ouida [Louise de la Ramee]

... foolish youth! Thou seek'st a greatness that will overwhelm thee. Stay but a little; for my cloud of dignity Is held from falling by so weak a wind, That it will quickly drop; my day is dim. Thou hast stolen THAT, which after some few hours Were thine without offence; and at my death Thou hast sealed up my expectation; Thy life ...
— Coronation Anecdotes • Giles Gossip

... the approach to the city. How vast it was, how protected, how high, how eaved, how enduring! I was told later that some part of that great bastion was Roman, and I can believe it. The Germans hate to destroy. It overwhelmed me as visions overwhelm, and I felt in its presence as boys feel when they first see the mountains. Had I not been a Christian, I would have worshipped and propitiated this obsession, ...
— The Path to Rome • Hilaire Belloc

... her brain a whirl, her limbs inert. Rape most foul this crowned satyr committed. "He fell upon me as a pack of hounds overwhelm a hunted, wounded she-stag," ...
— Secret Memoirs: The Story of Louise, Crown Princess • Henry W. Fischer

... Fetters had displayed in sending it. Having got the best of the encounter, Caxton had no objection to letting his defeated antagonist discharge his venom against the absent colonel, who would never know of it, and who was already breasting the waves of a sorrow so deep and so strong as almost to overwhelm him. For he had loved the boy; all his hopes had centred around this beautiful man child, who had promised so much that was good. His own future had been planned with reference to him. Now he was dead, and the bereaved father ...
— The Colonel's Dream • Charles W. Chesnutt

... Valentine Visconti, the Duke of Milan's daughter, whose dowry had gone to pay the ransom of King John, was at Chateau-Thierry when she heard of her husband's murder. Hers was one of those natures, full of softness and at the same time of fire, which grief does not overwhelm, and in which a passion for vengeance is excited and fed by their despair. She started for Paris in the early part of December, 1407, during the roughest winter, it was said, ever known for several centuries, taking with her ...
— A Popular History of France From The Earliest Times - Volume III. of VI. • Francois Pierre Guillaume Guizot

... gave you credit for a quicker wit, but it is gratifying to learn that you are beginning at last to see that I am in deadly earnest. When I strike there is nothing half-hearted behind my blow; I swear to you that I shall neither relent nor draw back. If ruin overwhelm me, Cynthia Vanrenen shall be involved in my downfall. Picture to yourself the smiles, the whispers, the half-spoken scandal that will cling to her through life. Who will believe her when she says that she was ignorant ...
— Cynthia's Chauffeur • Louis Tracy

... host of enemies for every useful esculent, while the weeds are suffered to grow unmolested, and are provided with such tenacity of life, and such methods of propagation, that the gardener must maintain a continual struggle or they will hopelessly overwhelm him? What hidden virtue is there in these things, that it is granted them to sow themselves with the wind, and to grapple the earth with this immitigable stubbornness, and to flourish in spite of obstacles, and never to suffer blight beneath any sun or shade, but always to mock their enemies ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 18, No. 108, October, 1866 • Various

... in the morning and, with some difficulty, made his way on deck he found that, as the captain predicted, the sea was far heavier than the night before. Great ridges of water bore down upon the ship, each seeming as if it would overwhelm her; and for the first few minutes Bob expected to see the brig go, head foremost, and sink under his feet. It was not till he reflected that she had lived through it for hours that he began to view the scene with composure. Although the waves ...
— Held Fast For England - A Tale of the Siege of Gibraltar (1779-83) • G. A. Henty

... have been in love with that sort of woman came very near mental malady. He said "that sort of woman," because the vagueness of the term gave scope to the bitterness of resentment with which he tried to overwhelm her. It enabled him to create some such paradise of pain as that into which the souls of Othello and Desdemona might have gone together. Had he been a Moor of Venice he would doubtless have smothered her with a pillow; but being a New York banker he could only try to slay the image, whose eyes ...
— The Inner Shrine • Basil King

... surrounded by an ocean of trees, so vast, so full of endless billows, that it seemed to be pressing on every side to overwhelm them. Gnarled oaks, with branches twisted and knotted as if in rage, rose in groves like tidal waves. Smooth forests of beech-trees, round and gray, swept over the knolls and slopes of land in a mighty ground-swell. But most ...
— The Blue Flower, and Others • Henry van Dyke

... influence; for, should you fall in his way and be unprotected, direful, indeed, might be the consequences. Sudden disease, like a pestilence at mid-day, might seize you, and on those lovely shores you might pine away and die. Dreadful accidents might overwhelm you and bury all your happiness forever. Therefore be wise ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 32, June, 1860 • Various

... here, The black clouds dragging near, Against this lonely elm Thrust all his strength to maim and overwhelm ...
— Georgian Poetry 1918-19 • Various

... half were not sufficiently strong to carry the second position; so I sent for the two reserve battalions, and ordered the cavalry to pass the river, and follow on our right flank the march of our columns. During this time the enemy had endeavored to overwhelm us on both sides. Major Becdelievre brought together what remained of his battalion, rushed upon the fusileers and forced them back into the wood whence they had come." These were splendid feats of arms. But the excessive inferiority ...
— Pius IX. And His Time • The Rev. AEneas MacDonell

... turbulent agitator, which everyone seemed to hear, and be acquainted with, made the audience hostile to begin with. It was not a demonstrable hostility; but one felt it was there, ready to break out, and overwhelm this stormy petrel of ...
— The Underworld - The Story of Robert Sinclair, Miner • James C. Welsh

... the fearful commotion, may be thrown safely on to the shores of reunion. It was anticipated, especially by the rebels themselves, that these incalculable losses, these tremendous shocks and sudden changes, would utterly overwhelm the North with ruin and tear her to pieces with faction and disorder. But this anticipation of accumulated disasters, in which the wish was father to the thought, has not been realized to any appreciable ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. III, No IV, April 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... Invisible reigned, and the only law was the caprice of the supernatural. In the temples the sorcerers mix themselves up with the popular idea, and scythes cut the grass without being held, brass serpents move, and one hears bronze statues laugh and wolves sing. Immediately the saints reply and overwhelm them. The Host is changed into living food, sacred Christian images shed drops of blood, sticks set upright in the ground blossom into flower, springs of pure water appear in dry places, warm loaves of bread multiply themselves at the feet of the needy, a tree bows down before some ...
— The Dream • Emile Zola

... fact, that but for the exasperation caused by so many bitter shafts, Jesus might long have remained unnoticed, and have been lost in the dreadful storm which was soon about to overwhelm the whole Jewish nation. The high priesthood and the Sadducees had rather disdained than hated him. The great sacerdotal families, the Boethusim, the family of Hanan, were only fanatical in their conservatism. ...
— The Life of Jesus • Ernest Renan

... beautiful, and as the guests left the ship, little did they think of the fearful doom that was so soon to overwhelm many of those whose hands they had clasped for ...
— Narratives of Shipwrecks of the Royal Navy; between 1793 and 1849 • William O. S. Gilly

... shall not be overcome, but will so strive and warsle aneath the foul grips of that rampant Arminian, the English high-priest Laud, that he shall himself be cast into the mire, or choket wi' the stoure of his own bakiefu's of abominations, wherewith he would overwhelm and bury the Evangil. Yea, even though the shield of his mighty men is made red, and his valiant men are in scarlet, he shall recount his worthies, but they shall ...
— Ringan Gilhaize - or The Covenanters • John Galt

... nothing visible through mist and fog and space, but tiers of winding-sheets. The ground at my feet where, when last there, I had seen the peasantry of Naples dancing among the vines, reckless of the burning mountain which threatened to overwhelm them, was now in possession of a strong serpent of engine-hose, watchfully lying in wait for the serpent Fire, and ready to fly at it if it showed its forked tongue. A ghost of a watchman, carrying a faint corpse candle, haunted the distant upper ...
— The Uncommercial Traveller • Charles Dickens

... drew the headland. Then it seemed to stand out in the dark ocean like some monster of the deep about to overwhelm us. It was a remarkable headland—once seen not likely to be forgotten. As we all stood gazing at it with dread and anxiety, I observed a person coming up on the poop deck. He advanced rapidly towards where the mates were standing. ...
— My First Voyage to Southern Seas • W.H.G. Kingston

... it said, "how pitiful are thy vain efforts and strivings to keep back by thine own strength that fiery flood of hell which grows and increases to overwhelm thy soul! If the inflowing of good which Jehovah vouchsafes is infinite, only less infinite is the outflowing of that which thou callest evil and wickedness. How, then, canst thou hope to stand against it and to conquer? How canst thou hope to keep back that raging torrent of fire ...
— Shapes that Haunt the Dusk • Various

... quick perception of her sex she felt it, and drew back a step, not knowing but the next moment might overwhelm her with an accusation. But Bigot was not sure, and he dared not hint to Angelique more ...
— The Golden Dog - Le Chien d'Or • William Kirby

... AUSTRIA.—An Austrian attempt to overwhelm Serbia in the first weeks of the war met with disastrous failure. This was due to two causes: (1) the brave resistance of the Serbian troops; (2) the fact that the greater part of the Austrian forces had ...
— A School History of the Great War • Albert E. McKinley, Charles A. Coulomb, and Armand J. Gerson

... manifestation of our military ideas. We have been the earth's spoiled children, thanks to the salt seas between us and other powerful military nations. Before any other Power could reach the United States it must overwhelm the British navy, and then it must overwhelm ours and bring its forces in transports. Sea-power, you say. That is the facile word, so ready to the lips that we do not realize the wonder of it any more than of the ...
— My Year of the War • Frederick Palmer

... fortifications, but the great mass of the people were safe on their inland farms and in their untrodden forests. The Americans may not have been unconquerable, but English troops were not numerous enough to overwhelm them in their scattered settlements. It would not pay to send army after army to be lost in swamps or drowned in rivers or ambushed and ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume XI • John Lord

... to a plank, calling for help,—alas, in vain,—upon his father and his father-in-law. But oftenest on his lips was the name of Halcyone. To her his thoughts cling. He prays that the waves may bear his body to her sight, and that it may receive burial at her hands. At length the waters overwhelm him, and he sinks. The Day-star looked dim that night. Since it could not leave the heavens, it shrouded its face ...
— Bulfinch's Mythology • Thomas Bulfinch

... devoted town, and that they must submit to be taxed by a parliament, in which they were not and could not be represented, or support their brethren who were selected to sustain the first shock of a power which, if successful there, would overwhelm them all. The neighbouring towns, disdaining to avail themselves of the calamities inflicted on a sister for her exertions in the common cause, clung to her with increased affection; and that spirit of enthusiastic patriotism, which, for a time, elevates the mind above ...
— The Life of George Washington, Vol. 1 (of 5) • John Marshall

... rough passage, Brown, Jones, and Robinson are here seen landed at Ostend, surrounded, and a little bewildered, by the natives, who overwhelm them with attentions—seize the luggage, thrust cards into their hands, drag them in several directions at once, all talking together (which prevented their directions being so clear as they otherwise would have been)—and, finally, ...
— The Foreign Tour of Messrs. Brown, Jones and Robinson • Richard Doyle

... powerful empire is forced to rise early and be up late; not to meditate on the present fortunes or future destinies of his country, but by his personal exertions to compensate for the inefficiency and expiate the blunders of his underlings, whom his unfortunate want of blood has forced him to overwhelm with praises which they do not deserve, and duties which they cannot discharge. I do not wish you to infer that the policy of Beckendorff has been actuated by the feelings which influence the Minister whom I have noticed, from whose conduct in this very respect his own materially ...
— Vivian Grey • The Earl of Beaconsfield

... rule, consisted entirely of cavalry. Such swiftly moving assailants as the Northmen and the Magyars could best be dealt with by mounted men who could bring them to bay, compel them to fight, and overwhelm them by the shock of the charge. In this way the foot soldiers of Charlemagne's time came to be replaced by the mailed horsemen who for four centuries ...
— EARLY EUROPEAN HISTORY • HUTTON WEBSTER

... diamond mace of inconstancy can overturn the mountain of the Rishi hermit. How despicable and how weak the world! doomed to destruction, without strength! Impermanence, like the fierce lion, can even spoil the Naga-elephant-great-Rishi. Only the diamond curtain of Tathagata can overwhelm inconstancy! How much more should those not yet delivered from desire, fear and dread its power? From the six seeds there grows one sprout, one kind of water from the rain, the origin of the four points is far removed: five kinds of fruit from the two 'Koo'—the three periods, past, present, ...
— Sacred Books of the East • Various

... foot in height." Thoreau felt the eerie strangeness of beach and sand dunes as all explorers have, and he noted, too, the characteristics of the sand and its vegetation and of the inhabitants with a humorous minuteness. Writing of the dunes, which seem always about to overwhelm Provincetown, he says, "Some say that while the Government is planting beach grass behind the town for the protection of the harbor, the inhabitants are rolling the sand into the harbor in wheel-barrows, in order to make houselots," which seems characteristic of the beach grass, ...
— Old Plymouth Trails • Winthrop Packard

... helmets, and the axles fitted with iron scythes so that they can charge straight into the ranks of the foe? [18] And suppose you heard that they have camels to ride on, each one of which would scare a hundred horses, and that they will bring up towers from which to help their own friends, and overwhelm us with volleys of darts so that we cannot fight them on level ground? [19] If this were what you had heard of the enemy, I as you, once again, you who are now so fearful what would you have done? You who turn ...
— Cyropaedia - The Education Of Cyrus • Xenophon

... form of poetry, in the work in which beauty will be mingled with beliefs. The more incapable of it I feel myself, the more I believe it to be possible. The sad splendour with which certain memories of mine overwhelm me, shows me that it is possible. Sometimes I myself have been sublime, I myself have been a masterpiece. Sometimes my visions have been mingled with a thrill of evidence so strong and so creative that the whole room has quivered with it like a forest, ...
— The Inferno • Henri Barbusse

... feel as if you'd gone into bankruptcy. Women invest in happiness as men do in property, and to 'go broke' the way you have is disconcerting. It would overwhelm some women; but it won't you—not if you're the same Honora I played with when I was a boy. You had pluck for two of us trousered animals—were the best of the lot. I want you to come here and stake out a new claim. You may get to be a millionaire ...
— The Precipice • Elia Wilkinson Peattie

... perfect. The creature of clay who has lost Soul, likewise lacks Heart,—and the starved, hopeless poverty of such an one is disclosed in him, even if he be a world's millionaire. Moreover, 'Soul'—that delicate, divine, eternal essence, is easily lost. Any earthly passion carried to excess, will overwhelm it, and sink it in an unfathomable sea. It can slip away in the pursuit of ambition,—in schemes for self- aggrandisement,—in the building up of huge fortunes,—in the pomp, and show, and vanity of mundane things. It flies from selfishness and sensuality. It can be ...
— God's Good Man • Marie Corelli

... very ill bestowed, its researches worse than useless, and that its tendency is to strike down one of the pillars on which the fabric of Christianity is supported." "Its tendency is to shock the pious,—confound the unlearned,—overwhelm those who are but moderately versed in the recondite investigations of theology, and above all to open an arsenal whence all the small wits of the infidel army may supply themselves with arms. Its ...
— The Trial of Theodore Parker • Theodore Parker

... Maine to Georgia; but it is almost certain that not one man would ever get back again, as by that time the people would have been roused and excited, armed and sufficiently disciplined; and their numbers, independent of their bravery, would overwhelm three or four times the number I ...
— Diary in America, Series One • Frederick Marryat (AKA Captain Marryat)

... right," exclaimed Duff one day to Rucker, after Gary had brought the schooner unscathed through a mountainous wave that had threatened to overwhelm everything. "I will say this for him, he knows ...
— Ralph Granger's Fortunes • William Perry Brown

... great caution. In those southern latitudes the birch tree, from whose bark the canoes of the northern Indians were made, did not thrive. Their boats were made of large logs, hollowed out and neatly shaped. They were often ornamented with infinite labor. Some of the warriors prepared to overwhelm the strangers with a shower of arrows from the land. Others embarked in their larger boats to ascend the river, and others to descend, so as to cut off all ...
— The Adventures of the Chevalier De La Salle and His Companions, in Their Explorations of the Prairies, Forests, Lakes, and Rivers, of the New World, and Their Interviews with the Savage Tribes, Two Hu • John S. C. Abbott

... with the din of preparation throughout America for defensive war. It now was found that vigorous measures must be pursued to oppose the torrent which was preparing to overwhelm the colonies, which had now been dissevered from the British empire, by the declaration of independence. The continental army was now raising, and great numbers of American youth volunteered in the service of their country. A large army of reinforcements ...
— Alonzo and Melissa - The Unfeeling Father • Daniel Jackson, Jr.

... principles. And so, if a physician were called in to see a sick child, he might see that it was in desperate danger, and that unless something could be done, and that speedily, to arrest the disease, his little patient would be dead in a few hours; and yet to say that to the poor child, and overwhelm it with terror and distress, would not be a very suitable course of procedure for averting ...
— Gentle Measures in the Management and Training of the Young • Jacob Abbott

... people, as in some larger communities, have only a share in the legislature, they cannot overwhelm the collateral powers, who having likewise a share, are in condition to defend themselves: where they act only by their representatives, their force may be uniformly employed. And they may make a part in a constitution ...
— An Essay on the History of Civil Society, Eighth Edition • Adam Ferguson, L.L.D.

... was so unhappy before; for that gipsy woman has raised doubts and fears which overwhelm me. Lucy, too, has been told something that affects her deeply. She never spoke during the whole way home, and seemed glad to get rid of me as she ran into her father's house. If this should be true (and why raise such a report without ...
— Olla Podrida • Frederick Marryat

... said the king's voice, from the bottom of the alcove; a voice which made a cold shudder pass through the musketeer's veins. He bowed, amazed, confused, and stupefied by the smile with which Aramis seemed to overwhelm him, as soon as these words had ...
— The Man in the Iron Mask • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... boys felt, they could not suppress an exclamation of admiration at the magnificent scene before them. The sea was tossed up in great masses of water, which, as they neared the ship, threatened to overwhelm them, but which, as she rose on their summits, passed harmlessly under her, hurling, however, tons of water upon her deck. The wind was still blowing fiercely, but a rift in the clouds above, through which the sun threw down a bright ray of light upon the tossing water, showed that ...
— Out on the Pampas - The Young Settlers • G. A. Henty

... to 'zackly determin whether they are a thousand years old or was bought recent. I can cry like a child over a jug one thousand years of age, especially if it is a Roman jug; but a jug of a uncertin date doesn't overwhelm me with emotions. Jugs and pots of a uncertin age is doubtles vallyable property, but, like the debentures of the London, Chatham, and Dover Railway, a man doesn't want too ...
— The Complete Works of Artemus Ward, Part 5 • Charles Farrar Browne

... obvious creed, he sets down for "French politics;" for, notwithstanding the peace, he cannot be persuaded that the French are not still laying plots to ruin the nation, and to get hold of the Bank of England. The radical attempted to overwhelm him, one day, by a long passage from a newspaper; but Jack neither reads nor believes in newspapers. In reply, he gave him one of the stanzas which he has by heart from his favourite, and indeed only author, old Tusser, and which he ...
— Bracebridge Hall, or The Humorists • Washington Irving

... in the world, and the mysteries of creation. Even the princes of the heavens, when they see Metatron, tremble before him, and prostrate themselves; his magnificence and majesty, the splendor and beauty radiating from him overwhelm them, even the wicked Samael, the greatest of them, even Gabriel the angel of the fire, Bardiel the angel of the hail, Ruhiel the angel of the wind, Barkiel the angel of the lightning, Za'miel ...
— The Legends of the Jews Volume 1 • Louis Ginzberg

... that as they climbed up the steep narrow rocky slope there was a fierce yell and a rush, and they saw the light slightly obscured as the Apaches dashed by the entrance in a fierce charge, meant to overwhelm them. ...
— The Silver Canyon - A Tale of the Western Plains • George Manville Fenn

... overdoing of a work praiseworthy in itself, the proceedings against the witches had proved far less acceptable to the Beneficent Father than to that very Arch Enemy whom they were intended to distress and utterly overwhelm. It is not the less certain, however, that awe and terror brooded over the memories of those who died for this horrible crime of witchcraft. Their graves, in the crevices of the rocks, were supposed to be incapable of retaining ...
— The House of the Seven Gables • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... The unpleasant impression which these conferences were calculated to leave upon my mind was fast wearing away, when there occurred a circumstance, slight indeed in itself, but calculated irrepressibly to awaken all my worst suspicions, and to overwhelm me ...
— Two Ghostly Mysteries - A Chapter in the History of a Tyrone Family; and The Murdered Cousin • Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu

... loved Carleton because he heard and loved them. To have his great, kindly eyes fixed on some poor soldier, or neighbor in distress, was in itself a lightening of the load of trouble. Unlike those professional or volunteer comforters, who overwhelm by dumping a whole cart-load of condolence upon the sufferer, who is unable to resist or reply, Carleton was often great in his power of encouraging silence, and ...
— Charles Carleton Coffin - War Correspondent, Traveller, Author, and Statesman • William Elliot Griffis

... of flood. It comes out from a great chasm in the rocks in the face of a precipice at a vast height from the ground; and, in times of flood, it brings down such a mass of sand, gravel, stones, rubbish, and black mud as sometimes to threaten to overwhelm the village." ...
— Rollo in Switzerland • Jacob Abbott

... against the ground, set fire to the dried thorns and withered grass, and the blaze ran along the earth like wildfire, to the great alarm of poor L**, who saw in every burning bush a stream of lava rushing to overwhelm us. ...
— The Diary of an Ennuyee • Anna Brownell Jameson

... phrase with which people console themselves in misfortunes they often bring upon themselves. If you would only think of the absurdity of what you are saying. You have admitted your prosperity; and the other troubles, home troubles, which I know are very trying, need not overwhelm you. You are much less manly, Walter, now you are a man, than I expected you to be. You have quite disappointed ...
— The Guinea Stamp - A Tale of Modern Glasgow • Annie S. Swan

... everlasting! Not all the learning wits and sages boast Can equal the sweet burden of thy song;— Can yield such rest amid life's noisiest strife;— Such peace to still the spirit's wildest wars;— Such hope to stem the most tumultuous wave May threat to overwhelm. The love of Jesus,— Sweet, having this thou risest far above All this world's clouds, and catchest ...
— Laura Secord, the heroine of 1812. - A Drama. And Other Poems. • Sarah Anne Curzon

... he was sure to encounter Forrest, who always attacked with a vehemence for which he must be prepared, and that, after he had repelled the first attack, he must in turn assume the most determined offensive, overwhelm him and utterly destroy his whole force. I knew that Forrest could not have more than four thousand cavalry, and my own movement would give employment to every other man of the rebel army not immediately present with him, so ...
— Memoirs of Three Civil War Generals, Complete • U. S. Grant, W. T. Sherman, P. H. Sheridan

... clothing and his clumsy shoes, then he sank back into his chair, covered his face with his hands, and gave way to tears. He had lived in this world too long not to know that prosperity breeds forgetfulness, and he felt already in his heart a foretaste of the bitterness that should overwhelm him when this boy, whom he loved as his own child, ...
— Burnham Breaker • Homer Greene

... up, and just going to be turned off, and has a reprieve brought to him,—I say I do not wonder that they bring a surgeon with it, to let him blood that very moment they tell him of it; that the surprise may not drive the animal spirits from the heart and overwhelm him. ...
— Library of the World's Best Literature, Ancient and Modern — Volume 11 • Various

... "You overwhelm me with your compliments, Mr. Pedagog," replied the Idiot, cheerfully. "A flatterer like you should live ...
— The Idiot • John Kendrick Bangs

... could be kinder than Mr Huntingdon's treatment of his restored child; and when her little ones joined her, it seemed as if the pent back affections of the squire were coming forth in such a rush as would almost overwhelm his grandchildren with a flood of indulgence. Brighter days, then, had come; nevertheless, Amos could not help seeing much in the character and conduct of both his sister and Walter which saddened him. Acting himself on the ...
— Amos Huntingdon • T.P. Wilson

... encouragement the youth of this country receive from those who are above them in social station. In every one of your counties there is a hunt, cricket clubs, golf clubs in such numbers that their statistics absolutely overwhelm me. Everywhere one meets young men of leisure, well off, calmly proposing to settle down and spend the best part of their lives in what they call country life. They will look after their estates; they will hunt a little, shoot a little, go abroad for two months in the winter, play golf a little, ...
— The Illustrious Prince • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... come down upon us. At times the thunder was so continued, that it was conceived some ship was firing its guns for assistance. At other times there would fall such incessant and heavy torrents of rain for two or three days together as if an universal deluge were going to overwhelm the world. This almost unceasing war of the elements perplexed the men and reduced them almost to despair, so that they were continually wet and could not get half an hours rest at a time, always ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. III. • Robert Kerr

... firm, and inexhaustible in expedients, set itself manfully to meet these calamities, which all combined to overwhelm Sweden; and his shrewd understanding taught him how to turn even misfortunes to his advantage. The defection of so many German cities of the empire deprived him, it is true, of a great part of his former allies, but at the same time it freed him from the necessity ...
— The Works of Frederich Schiller in English • Frederich Schiller

... the Caucasus to the frontier of China. The wild tenants of this wilderness, the various tribes of Tartars, once the terror of East and West, were like a vast ocean of human beings swayed to and fro by nomadic and predatory instincts, which for centuries threatened to overwhelm and efface every vestige of the ...
— Russia - As Seen and Described by Famous Writers • Various

... inexplicable cares were beyond the rule of the Life that dwelt in him, then was that Life no true God, and the whole thing was false; for he loved Helen with a love that was no invention or creation of his own, and if not his, then whose? Certainly not of one who, when it threatened to overwhelm him, was unable to uphold him under it! This thing also belonged to the God of his being. A poor God must he be for men or women who did not care about the awful things involved in the relation between them! Therefore even in his worst anxieties about Helen,—I do not ...
— Thomas Wingfold, Curate • George MacDonald

... she had seized the significance of Monjardin's verses, had grown deathly pale; stricken by sudden disillusionment, she felt a glacial chill overwhelm her body to the very marrow; she feared that she would faint straightway and provide a spectacle for the guests, who were all drinking her health, their eyes focussed upon her. A veil of tears spread ...
— Brazilian Tales • Joaquim Maria Machado de Assis

... You know that if he makes war, Russia must mobilize. You know that France is bound to come in with us as you are with France. You know that the moment we mobilize, Germany, the old man's ally, will have only one desperate chance of victory, and that is to overwhelm our ally, France, with one superb rush of her millions, and then sweep back and meet us on the Vistula. You know that nothing can stop this except Germany remonstrating with Austria, and insisting on the Servian case being ...
— New York Times, Current History, Vol 1, Issue 1 - From the Beginning to March, 1915 With Index • Various

... evils overwhelm you as thousands have suffered, and thousands have surmounted; but turn your thoughts with vigour to some other plan of life, and keep always in your mind, that, with due submission to Providence, a man of genius has been seldom ruined but by himself[1124]. Your Patron's ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 1 • Boswell

... has been accustomed to take God for granted has used almost the same words at some time in his life. The hour of tempest, when the uncontrollable waves of trouble and winds of adversity seemed ready to overwhelm him, when he had done all that mortal might do, then it seemed as though this God to whom he had prayed so often, of whom he had learned to think as part of his life, ...
— Levels of Living - Essays on Everyday Ideals • Henry Frederick Cope

... seemed as though Providence had taken pity on them; for, notwithstanding the insecurity of the craft and the violence of the breakers, the dreaded passage was made with safety. Once, indeed, when they had just entered the surf, a mighty wave, curling high above them, seemed about to overwhelm the frail structure of skins and wickerwork; but Rufus Dawes, keeping the nose of the boat to the sea, and Frere baling with his hat, they succeeded in reaching deep water. A great misfortune, however, occurred. Two of the bark buckets, left by some unpardonable oversight uncleated, were washed ...
— For the Term of His Natural Life • Marcus Clarke

... follow. No sooner was the storm over than another danger loomed up. The ship's crew included a number of renegade English sailors who conspired to mutiny, to overwhelm the officers, and to kill the crew and passengers. By including in their confidence an American sailor, whom they mistook for an Irishman, their plot came to naught. Lafayette summoned the whole crew, put thirty-three ...
— Lafayette • Martha Foote Crow

... Temple—who had power to thrill the soul of Elia, small imp as he was, even in his long coats; and to make him glow, tremble, and blush with a passion, that not faintly indicated the day-spring of that absorbing sentiment, which was afterwards destined to overwhelm and subdue his ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Volume 2 • Charles Lamb

... Forster spoke, explaining to Jimmie the inner significance of terrific world-events. Russia was in the midst of a gigantic offensive, which was meant to overwhelm Austria; England at the same time was hurling in her new armies on the Somme; for these two giant movements they wanted shells—millions and millions of shells from America, which alone could make enough of them. The railroads were clogged ...
— Jimmie Higgins • Upton Sinclair

... clear view of our present condition, it will be necessary, sir, not to amuse ourselves with general assertions, or overwhelm our reason by terrifying exaggerations: let us consider distinctly the power and the conduct of our enemies, and inquire whether they do not affright us more than they are able to ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson, Vol. 10. - Parlimentary Debates I. • Samuel Johnson

... guilty and the innocent alike—nay, thousands of those who know not their right hand from their left—to one common destruction? Does not God (if you suppose it his doing) swallow up whole cities by earthquake, or overwhelm them with volcanic fires? I say, is there any difference between the cases, except that the victims are very rarely so wicked as the Canaanites are said to have been, and that God in the one case himself ...
— The Eclipse of Faith - Or, A Visit To A Religious Sceptic • Henry Rogers

... likewise faults, and faults sufficient to obscure and overwhelm any other merit. I shall show them in the proportion in which they appear to me, without envious malignity or superstitious veneration. No question can be more innocently discussed than a dead poet's pretensions to renown; and little regard is due to that bigotry which ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume V: Miscellaneous Pieces • Samuel Johnson

... considerable difficulty in verifying the symbol, but I will submit what up to the present has seemed to me as the most satisfactory explanation. It appears from the description that this was about the last great public effort the dragon made to overwhelm the church and that he was exasperated to this supreme effort by the humiliating defeat he had suffered. The means he employed was water, an object of nature; hence we are to look for some great political event by which the dragon made his master-effort ...
— The Revelation Explained • F. Smith

... the other hand, the magnitude and difficulty of the trust to which the voice of my country called me being sufficient to awaken in the wisest and most experienced of her citizens a distrustful scrutiny into his qualifications, could not but overwhelm with despondence one who, inheriting inferior endowments from nature, and unpracticed in the duties of civil administration, ought to be peculiarly conscious of his own deficiencies. In this conflict of emotions, all I dare aver is, that it has been ...
— Key-Notes of American Liberty • Various

... your eye, so that from the sentiment with which you regard it curiosity and surprise are almost completely, and perhaps deplorably, absent. Admiration remains, however—admiration of a familiar and even slightly patronising kind. The Maison Carree does not overwhelm you; you can conceive it. It is not one of the great sensations of antique art; but it is perfectly felicitous, and, in spite of having been put to all sorts of incongruous uses, marvellously preserved. ...
— A Little Tour in France • Henry James



Words linked to "Overwhelm" :   fire, cover, deluge, seize, spread over, arouse, stagger, evoke, enkindle, kill, provoke, shell, raise, vanquish, kindle, beat out, devastate, overpower, knock out, elicit, beat, saddle, get hold of, clutch, benight, charge, submerge, burden, steamroller, steamroll, trounce, crush, lock



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