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Precipitous   /prɪsˈɪpɪtəs/   Listen
Precipitous

adjective
1.
Done with very great haste and without due deliberation.  Synonyms: hasty, overhasty, precipitant, precipitate.  "Hasty makeshifts take the place of planning" , "Rejected what was regarded as an overhasty plan for reconversion" , "Wondered whether they had been rather precipitate in deposing the king"
2.
Extremely steep.  Synonyms: abrupt, sharp.  "The precipitous rapids of the upper river" , "The precipitous hills of Chinese paintings" , "A sharp drop"



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"Precipitous" Quotes from Famous Books



... in my diary that in the afternoon we had seven islands in sight. They were higher than those we had seen before, and consisted of precipitous hills. There were also small glaciers or snow-fields, and the rock formation showed clear traces of erosion by ice or snow, this being especially the case on the largest island, where there were even small ...
— Farthest North - Being the Record of a Voyage of Exploration of the Ship 'Fram' 1893-1896 • Fridtjof Nansen

... well-watered country, and on every side there were brawling little streams rushing down precipitous heights or scurrying away through woody valleys, as if anxious to find the very nearest way ...
— The Adventurous Seven - Their Hazardous Undertaking • Bessie Marchant

... called, lay in its secluded, and almost hidden situation. To reach the tower, it was necessary to travel three miles up the glen, crossing about twenty times the little stream, which, winding through the narrow valley, encountered at every hundred yards the opposition of a rock or precipitous bank on the one side, which altered its course, and caused it to shoot off in an oblique direction to the other. The hills which ascend on each side of this glen are very steep, and rise boldly over the stream, which is thus imprisoned within their barriers. ...
— The Monastery • Sir Walter Scott

... all his team, and the tangle of flying harness, torn horseflesh, and crimson khaki, that we left behind us on the veldt; also that a small red flag, ludicrously like those used to indicate a putting-green, marked the single sloping entrance to the otherwise precipitous donga, which I for one was ...
— Raffles - Further Adventures of the Amateur Cracksman • E. W. Hornung

... these days. It consisted mainly of vivid but painful pictures of the accidents and incidents attending this wholesale migration. The roads over the Alleghanies, {403} between Philadelphia and Pittsburg, were then rude, steep, and dangerous, and some of the more precipitous slopes were consequently strewn with the carcases of wagons, carts, horses, oxen, which had made ...
— Brief History of English and American Literature • Henry A. Beers

... children of the precipitous earthy banks, show the same thrifty spirit as the other members of the mining corporation. Three species, A. parietina, A. personata and A. pilipes, dig long corridors leading to the cells, which are scattered here and there and ...
— Bramble-bees and Others • J. Henri Fabre

... house. If the enemy has been in a state of constant vigilance, this undertaking is one of extreme difficulty. The house is on the top of a lofty hill and frequently access can not be had to it except by passing through a series of swamps. In addition one must climb up precipitous ascents, and break through a network of felled trees and such other obstacles as the reader can readily imagine for himself. There is, moreover, the danger from spring traps set both for man and animal, and from sharp bamboo slivers placed all around the house and on the ...
— The Manbos of Mindano - Memoirs of the National Academy of Sciences, Volume XXIII, First Memoir • John M. Garvan

... he, "that the place may easily be taken, since what is in command of it is weak." And in a little time he so terrified Sisimithres, that he took it without any difficulty. At an attack which he made upon such another precipitous place with some of his Macedonian soldiers, he called to one whose name was Alexander, and told him, he at any rate must fight bravely, if it were but for his name's sake. The youth fought gallantly and was killed in the action, at which he was sensibly afflicted. ...
— Plutarch's Lives • A.H. Clough

... that kind never do happen opportunely," Lord Dawne rejoined. Just as he spoke, however, a brilliant flash of lightning lit up vividly the precipitous side of the hill and the whole valley beneath them for ...
— The Heavenly Twins • Madame Sarah Grand

... found a refuge. In January, 1825, a patriot general at the town of La Paz undertook on his own responsibility to declare the entire province independent, alike of Spain, Peru, and the United Provinces of La Plata. This action was too precipitous, not to say presumptuous, to suit Bolivar and Sucre. The better to control the situation, the former went up to La Paz and the latter to Chuquisaca, the capital, where a Congress was to assemble for the purpose of imparting a more orderly ...
— The Hispanic Nations of the New World - Volume 50 in The Chronicles Of America Series • William R. Shepherd

... in South Dorsetshire lying between the river Frome, Poole Harbour, and the English Channel; formerly a royal deer-forest; has a precipitous coast, and inland consists of chalk downs; nearly 100 quarries ...
— The Nuttall Encyclopaedia - Being a Concise and Comprehensive Dictionary of General Knowledge • Edited by Rev. James Wood

... a veritable canon, a hundred or more feet deep in places, and with ragged, precipitous walls and banks, which they had to descend on one side and ascend on the other. Here the skill and local knowledge of their three new-found friends stood them in good stead. There was yet enough water in the bottom of the great gully ...
— The Second Deluge • Garrett P. Serviss

... we arrive at Allen Garden, situated between the end of Camac Street and Wood Street, which for many years was known as the three-cornered taut, the banks of which were both high and precipitous, and a constant source of danger to children playing in the surrounding garden. The Corporation very wisely decided to fill it up, and so converted it into the present garden, in which are to be seen every evening crowds of happy ...
— Recollections of Calcutta for over Half a Century • Montague Massey

... successful con-clusion unless I was free, so I sint th' ar-rmy home an' attackted San Juon hill. Ar-rmed on'y with a small thirty-two which I used in th' West to shoot th' fleet prairie dog, I climbed that precipitous ascent in th' face iv th' most gallin' fire I iver knew or heerd iv. But I had a few r-rounds iv gall mesilf an' what cared I? I dashed madly on cheerin' as I wint. Th' Spanish throops was dhrawn up in a long line in th' formation known among military men as a long line. I fired at th' man nearest ...
— Mr. Dooley's Philosophy • Finley Peter Dunne

... I wish to dwell upon the natural obstacles I had to encounter and which no foresight could have overcome or obviated. The rocky and precipitous coast afforded no sheltered landing places, the roads were mere bridle-paths, the effect of the tropical sun and rains upon the unacclimated troops was deadly, and a dread of strange and unknown diseases had ...
— The Gatlings at Santiago • John H. Parker

... seventeen miles wide. England holds the keys to every one of these gates. Count them,—Gibraltar, Malta, and at the mouth of the Red Sea, not one, but many keys. There, midway in the narrow strait, is the black, bare rock of Perim, sterile, precipitous, a perfect counterpart of Gibraltar; and on either side, between it and the main-land, are the ship-channels which connect the Red Sea with the great Indian Ocean. This England seized in 1857. A little farther out is the peninsula of Aden, another Gibraltar, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XII. July, 1863, No. LXIX. - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... quiet save the incessant shriek and scream of the rock birds, the kittiwakes, black-headed gulls, and guillemots that live on the sides of these high sheer craigs. Here the mother guillemot lays her single egg, and here, on these narrow shelves of precipitous rock, she holds it in place with her foot until the warmth of her leg and overhanging body hatches it into life, when she takes it on her back and flies down to the sea. Motherhood under difficulties, it would ...
— Penelope's Experiences in Scotland • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... tortuous and rugged descent, the Mochuelo commanded a halt. The place where this occurred was in a narrow gorge between two lines of hills, or it should rather be said of mountains; for although their altitude was only here and there very considerable, their cragged and precipitous conformation and rocky material entitled them to the latter denomination. The passage between them continued narrow only for a few hundred yards, after which, at either of its extremities, the mountains receded, and the valley opened into ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 59, No. 367, May 1846 • Various

... onion-sellers from over the sea. The historic connexion between Cornwall and Brittany is very ancient, and is a romance in itself. The English and French coasts, as they face each other there, are very much alike—broken, precipitous, and grand. The peoples live pretty much the same kind of lives on either side of the Channel. And when the onion-sellers come from France they are greeted with enthusiasm by the Cornish people, and although they speak their own tongue, they are perfectly ...
— Mushrooms on the Moor • Frank Boreham

... disconcerted, but rallied at once and began firing in the direction from whence came the volleys. They could not advance, and dared not retreat, having been caught in a sunken place in the road, with a barbed-wire fence on one side and a precipitous hill on the other. They held their ground, but could do no more. The Spanish poured volley after volley into their ranks. At the moment when it looked as if the whole regiment would be swept down by the steel-jacketed bullets from the Mausers, four ...
— History of Negro Soldiers in the Spanish-American War, and Other Items of Interest • Edward A. Johnson

... besides, be of doubtful result. At the point where Early's troops were in position, between the Massanutten range and Little North Mountain, the valley is only about three and a half miles wide. All along the precipitous bluff which overhangs Tumbling Run on the south side, a heavy line of earthworks had been constructed when Early retreated to this point in August, and these were now being strengthened so as to make them almost impregnable; in fact, so secure did Early consider himself ...
— The Memoirs of General P. H. Sheridan, Complete • General Philip Henry Sheridan

... day we pushed ahead at full speed. Soon we could make out the precipitous sandstone cliffs of Balhalla, the island which screens the entrance to Sandakan harbor. But long before we came abreast of the town signs of human habitation became increasingly apparent: little clusters of nipa-thatched huts built on stilts over the water; others hidden away in ...
— Where the Strange Trails Go Down • E. Alexander Powell

... at the top projected down to the German front line while the stem ran back connecting with the road through the dip which goes from Beaumont-Hamel on the north to the Ancre. At the forked or western end, projecting down to the front, there is a chasm more than thirty feet deep, with walls so precipitous that in some parts they overhang. The Germans had burrowed into the sides of the earth and established lairs far below the thirty feet level of the ravine, where they were practically out of reach of shell fire coming from whatever direction. In some instances they had hollowed ...
— The Story of the Great War, Volume VI (of VIII) - History of the European War from Official Sources • Various

... and that will amuse me,'" ruminated Francois on his high seat next to the coachman, repeating the marquis' words, as they drove home after the nobleman's precipitous retreat from the theater. "Well, he didn't look as though he had been particularly amused. But no wonder he was startled! It even"—reviewing the impression first made upon him at sight of the actress—"sent a shiver through me!" Here the carriage drew up sharply before the ...
— The Strollers • Frederic S. Isham

... fugitives it was as if the whole world had suddenly been riven asunder. For one flashing moment it seemed to Buck that he had been struck with fearful force from somewhere behind him, and as the blow fell he was hurled headlong down the precipitous path. ...
— The Golden Woman - A Story of the Montana Hills • Ridgwell Cullum

... up at 3 a.m. on the 16th. The weather was fine and calm. I started at 4.20 with Joyce to the south at the greatest possible speed. We reached Glacier Tongue about one and a half miles from the seaward end. Wherever there were not precipitous cliffs there was an even snow- slope to the top. From the top we searched with glasses; there was nothing to be seen but blue ice, crevassed, showing no protuberances. We came down and, half running, half walking, worked about three miles towards the root of the glacier; ...
— South! • Sir Ernest Shackleton

... his mental turmoil in the least alleviated when, having turned south and being on the point of coasting down a precipitous hill he felt a touch on his shoulder and heard the elder of his two pretty passengers command him in worse French than his own poor English to go slow when he turned into Fifth avenue again and be prepared ...
— Officer 666 • Barton W. Currie

... Suvla Bay the coastline was precipitous; high cliffs and no sort of creeks or beaches—impracticable. Suvla Bay itself seems a fine harbour but too far North were the aim to combine a landing there together with an attack on the Southern end of the Peninsula. Were we, on the other ...
— Gallipoli Diary, Volume I • Ian Hamilton

... him fainting on his weary way to drink one draught before he dies: this is the camel's grave. Situated half way between Korosko and Abou Hammed, the well of Moorahd is in an extinct crater, surrounded upon all sides but one by precipitous cliffs about 300 feet high. The bottom is a dead flat, and forms a valley of sand about 250 yards wide. In this bosom of a crater, salt and bitter water is found at a depth of only six feet from the surface. ...
— The Nile Tributaries of Abyssinia • Samuel W. Baker

... precipitous in places. There were little gullies, which expanded as we climbed up them. It seemed as if we would never reach the top, but at last we were there. I was aware that the drug had ceased its action. The yellow, rocky ground ...
— Beyond the Vanishing Point • Raymond King Cummings

... had been well chosen. It lay in a valley facing the open sea, while in the rear rose a semicircle of precipitous hills. Through these roadways were cut, which might easily be defended against enemies, while offering free access to friends. The power of the Minamoto had suddenly grown again, and the Taira saw fronting them an active and vigorous foe where a year before all had ...
— Historic Tales, Vol. 12 (of 15) - The Romance of Reality • Charles Morris

... shack, stopped and wondered, though it was dim and far away by then. Koppy and his immediate friends lifted guilty heads and questioned each other. Werner, nerves jangling, thoughtlessly pleaded the superior advantages of next Tuesday; and then bethought himself and advised more precipitous action. Nothing within a day's hard ride could stop Koppy now—one hundred rifles ...
— The Return of Blue Pete • Luke Allan

... well-constructed, if somewhat precipitous, staircase for what must be fully a hundred feet, we find ourselves in a cave from which a very spacious archway leads into a huge vaulted chamber. The first impression is one of acute astonishment, by no means lessened, even after one becomes accustomed to the dim light ...
— Travels in the Far East • Ellen Mary Hayes Peck

... feature of striking interest, and the ascent is a gradual one, leading chiefly through cultivated ground; but the aspect of the south-eastern or Stretton side is wild in the extreme, the whole face of the mountain being broken up into deep ravines, with precipitous sides, where purple rocks project boldly through the turf, and in many places even the active sheep and mountain ponies can scarcely find a footing. Down each of these ravines runs a small stream of exquisitely pure water, one of which, near the entrance ...
— A Night in the Snow - or, A Struggle for Life • Rev. E. Donald Carr

... paths for thee to walk on, when thou rannest to the race.[197] Thou proceedest on a precipitous ridge of the earth, when thou art lord in the van of ...
— India: What can it teach us? - A Course of Lectures Delivered before the University Of Cambridge • F. Max Mueller

... is on a hill sloping off all round, with steep and, in places, precipitous sides. It lies between two small rivers, the Ose and the Oserain, both of which fall into the Brenne, and thence into the Seine. Into this peninsula, with the rivers on each side of him, Vercingetorix had thrown himself with ...
— Caesar: A Sketch • James Anthony Froude

... we must go back to mythological relations. In the old legendary lore of ancient Scandinavia or of Germany, the loves and hatreds of their semi-mythological heroes and heroines space over many romantic incidents before reaching a culmination. The swiftly flowing Rhine, with its precipitous banks, eddies, and rapids; the broad and more majestic Danube or Elb; the broad meadows and Druidical groves on its hilly slopes and stretches of dark and gloomy forest,—all conspired to people the fancy with elfs, gnomes, fairies, and goblins, ...
— History of Circumcision from the Earliest Times to the Present - Moral and Physical Reasons for its Performance • Peter Charles Remondino

... and terrible climb. A weaker man would have fainted or given it up long before Dalrymple set his foot firmly upon the narrow beaten path which ran along between the garden wall at the back of the convent, and the precipitous descent on his left. The sweat ran down over his hard, pale face in the dark, as he shook off his cloak and laid down his ghastly burden under the deep shadow of the low postern. He shook his big shoulders and wiped his brow, and stretched ...
— Casa Braccio, Volumes 1 and 2 (of 2) • F. Marion Crawford

... waters, seamed and scarred into a thousand conflicting channels, burst suddenly into frenzied convulsion—heaving, boiling, hissing—gyrating in gigantic and innumerable vortices, and all whirling and plunging on to the eastward with a rapidity which water never elsewhere assumes, except in precipitous descents. ...
— Elson Grammer School Literature, Book Four. • William H. Elson and Christine Keck

... falling and the rainbow drawn On Lammermuir. Hearkening I heard again In my precipitous city beaten bells Winnow the keen sea wind. And here afar, Intent on my own race and place, I wrote. Take thou the writing: thine it is. For who Burnished the sword, blew on the drowsy coal, Held still ...
— Weir of Hermiston • Robert Louis Stevenson

... watched, through sounds like these, for a minute gun! Nay, he had once actually called up poor Arnaud in the middle of the night for an imaginary signal. Redclyffe Bay was a very dangerous one; a fine place for a wreck, with its precipitous crags, its single safe landing-place, and the great Shag Stone, on the eastern side, with a whole progeny of nearly sunken rocks, dreaded in rough weather by the fishermen themselves; but it was out of the ordinary track of vessels, and there were only a few traditions of ...
— The Heir of Redclyffe • Charlotte M. Yonge

... human affection. At first Uncle Fred, or Aunt Lilian, or, a little later, one of the two cowboys rode with her on her expeditions, but her prairie sense of direction quickly adapted itself to her new surroundings, and she soon learned to keep a keen eye for the precipitous cut-banks that drop sheer from a level plain and lie as unsuspected in the saffron sunlight as a coyote among the ripened willows. There were quicksands, too—spots where the water sprang from the hillside in a crystal stream ...
— The Homesteaders - A Novel of the Canadian West • Robert J. C. Stead

... the New World drama. Skies of profoundest blue—the tropical sun flaming through massive clouds of vapor—a sea of exuberant color, foaming white over coral beaches—waving cocoa palms against a background of exotic verdure marking a tortuous shore line, which now rises sheer and precipitous from the water's edge to dizzy, snowcapped, cloud-hung heights, now stretches away into vast reaches of oozy mangrove bog and dank cinchona grove—here flecked with stagnant lagoons that teem with slimy, crawling life—there flattened into interminable, ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... that was glorious to him beyond measure, he caught sight of a precipitous hill which he remembered passing on the outward march. Looking back at the first favorable point, he could see nothing that betokened the presence of Hadendowas, or any other human beings, in all that far-flung solitude. Were it not for the presence of the Italian rifle and cartridge-belt, ...
— The Wheel O' Fortune • Louis Tracy

... desolate hills rose on all sides. A few tumbled-down cottages of grey stone lay scattered upon the lower slopes among patches of shabby and forlorn cultivation. Here and there an outcrop of rock ran skywards into somber and precipitous ridges. The October wind passed to and fro over it all, mournfully singing, and driving loose clouds that seemed to drop ...
— The Human Chord • Algernon Blackwood

... muddy soil within the last few months, and will require still a year or two to make them verdant) we had a beautiful view of the Potomac, a truly majestic river, and the surrounding country. The fortifications, so numerous in all this region, and now so unsightly with their bare, precipitous sides, will remain as historic monuments, grass-grown and picturesque memorials of an epoch of terror and suffering: they will serve to make our country dearer and more interesting to us, and afford fit soil for poetry to root itself in: for this is a plant which thrives ...
— Sketches and Studies • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... the ridge at last, to find it bigger and more precipitous than I had expected. It ran out evidently for hundreds of yards, its course being marked by foam and fretting waves, and I was just thinking what a fatal spot it would be for a vessel to touch the shore, when I reached the top and uttered a startled cry, which ...
— Blue Jackets - The Log of the Teaser • George Manville Fenn

... As specimens of art they are admirable, and some of the subjects are among the most interesting to be found in the whole realm of Nature. Thus, the great tree, the "Grizzly Giant," of Mariposa, is shown in two admirable views; the mighty precipice of El Capitan, more than three thousand feet in precipitous height,—the three conical hill-tops of Yo Semite, taken, not as they soar into the atmosphere, but as they are reflected in the calm waters below,—these and others are shown, clear, yet soft, vigorous in the foreground, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XII. July, 1863, No. LXIX. - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... diminutive appearance I calculated the great height of the promontory. About eight miles off, on the right, I could see the falls of Montmorency, descending in a sheet of milk-white foam over a lofty precipitous bank into the stream, which, winding through a plain interspersed with villages and studded with vegetation, finds its way into the Saint Lawrence. Quebec is divided into two ...
— Peter the Whaler • W.H.G. Kingston

... hand-to-hand fighting, the night attacks, the charges up precipitous hills, the retreats made carrying the wounded under constant fire, which he witnessed and in which he bore his part, he never again can see with the same fresh and enthusiastic eyes. Then it was absolutely new, ...
— Real Soldiers of Fortune • Richard Harding Davis

... in composition. Strange as the distant vision seems to the traveler fresh from the rude and time-stained chalets of the mountains, still more surprising is the scene which greets his arrival by the precipitous road, past the double towered gateway, within the city walls. Expressly set it seems for a theatrical decor in its smiling gayety, its faultlessly pictorial effect. Every window in the blazoned houses is blossoming with brightest flowers, as for a perpetual fete. The voices of the ...
— The Counts of Gruyere • Mrs. Reginald de Koven

... Gorizia is one of the most important in the European conflict. The battle of the Isonzo is not to be regarded as a mere episode, but a prolonged siege over a front of more than a hundred miles of a natural fortress, consisting of a chain of precipitous mountains. Perhaps never before in a European war has the value of individual qualities been shown so conclusively as by the Italian troops in this war. The very steep cliffs, which are almost perpendicular, along the course of the river are almost ...
— New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 5, August, 1915 • Various

... Basseterre, the capital of the island. It was a clean handsome-looking place, and a number of ships lay before it; while behind it, rising from the wide valley, richly cultivated and beautiful in the extreme, rose the lofty and precipitous crags of Mount Misery, 3700 feet high. It may well be so-called, for it would be pain and misery to have to climb up it, and still greater not to be able ...
— Old Jack • W.H.G. Kingston

... Kublai-Khan had sent an ambassador who had brought him back some pretended relics of Adam, and among other things two of his molar teeth; for, if we can believe the Saracen traditions, the tomb of our first father must have been on the summit of one of the precipitous mountains, which forms the highest ground in the island. After losing sight of Ceylon, Marco Polo went to Cail, a port that we do not find marked on any of the modern maps, but a place where all the vessels touched coming ...
— Celebrated Travels and Travellers - Part I. The Exploration of the World • Jules Verne

... plains, in the manner explained in the last chapter, and that men might be furnished with a material for their works of architecture and sculpture, at once soft enough to be subdued, and hard enough to be preserved; the second, that some sense of danger might always be connected with the most precipitous forms, and thus increase their sublimity; and the third, that a subject of perpetual interest might be opened to the human mind in observing the changes of form brought about by time on these ...
— Modern Painters, Volume IV (of V) • John Ruskin

... Nisqually, and from this adventurous explorers reach North and South Mowich and Puyallup glaciers. No one has yet climbed the Mountain over those glaciers, or from the north side. A view from any of the trails will explain why. The great rock spines are more precipitous than elsewhere, the glaciers more broken; and the summit is fronted on either side by a huge parapet of rock which hurls defiance at anything short of an airship. Doubtless, we shall some day travel to Crater Peak by aeroplanes, but until these vehicles are equipped with {p.054} runners for landing ...
— The Mountain that was 'God' • John H. Williams

... left that island," there pierced a certain gusto of appreciation; and some of the rest were master-talkers. From their long tales, their traits of character and unpremeditated landscape, there began to piece itself together in my head some image of the islands and the island life; precipitous shores, spired mountain-tops, the deep shade of hanging forests, the unresting surf upon the reef, and the unending peace of the lagoon; sun, moon, and stars of an imperial brightness; man moving in these scenes scarce fallen, and woman lovelier than Eve; the primal curse ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 13 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... wood, and about a hundred yards from it, there was a pleasant hiding-place beside a pollard ash. The bank was hollow with rabbit-buries: the summer heat had hardened the clay of the mound and caused it to crack and crumble wherever their excavations left a precipitous edge. Some way up the trunk of the tree an immense flat fungus projected, roughly resembling the protruding lip of a savage enlarged by the insertion of a piece of wood. If formed a black ledge standing out seven or eight inches, two or three inches thick, and extending for a foot or ...
— The Amateur Poacher • Richard Jefferies

... glanced now at the yellow glare, and now cast his eye aloft at the shortened sail. While Staniford stood questioning whether she meant to say anything more, or whether, having discharged her conscience of an imagined offense, she had now reached one of her final, precipitous silences, Captain Jenness suddenly approached them, and said to him, "I guess you'd better ...
— The Lady of the Aroostook • W. D. Howells

... went. The trail wound in and out around the mountain-side, and their sure-footed horses followed it, never daunted by fallen trees or by rocky and precipitous places. More than once every Vigilante save one held her breath as she was carried up a dangerous, almost obliterated path to heights beyond. But Virginia's Pedro, who was far-famed as a trailer, led the way, and his rider called back reassuring ...
— Virginia of Elk Creek Valley • Mary Ellen Chase

... the water gushing out at every step among the huge granite boulders, and dashing with a merry noise across our path. After somewhat more than an hour's walk we turned back, and began to descend a long and precipitous path, or rather street, for there were houses on either side, in search of our boat. By the time we had embarked the tints of the sunset had vanished, a moon nearly full rode undisputed mistress in the cloudless sky, and we cut our way to our ship through ...
— Letters and Journals of James, Eighth Earl of Elgin • James, Eighth Earl of Elgin

... "Pie-Island," from its (to his hungry imagination) fancied resemblance to a pumpkin pie, and the name, like all bad names, sticks. McKay's Mountain on the main-land, a perpendicular rock more than a thousand feet high, up-heaved by the throes of some vast volcano, and numerous other bold and precipitous head lands, and rock-built islands, around which roll the sapphire-blue waters of the fathomless bay, present some of the most magnificent views to be found on ...
— Legends of the Northwest • Hanford Lennox Gordon

... myself out upon a strip of short turf sprinkled with the flowers of the white rock-rose and bordered with candy-tuft, and try to drive out of mind the only disagreeable thought I have at this moment—that of getting down to the path, where I was safe. The worst part of climbing precipitous places is not the going up, but the coming down. Not a human being or dwelling is in sight, so that I can contemplate the wildness of the scene to my mind's content. But a very hoarse voice not far above tells me that I am not alone. A raven perched upon a jutting piece of rock, that curiously ...
— Wanderings by southern waters, eastern Aquitaine • Edward Harrison Barker

... striven for. And a glint of satisfaction came into his eyes; it is something to have followed such a trail aright upon such a night. Down yonder, a crooked black line in a white field, was the stream which many miles further on flowed into the American. Rising abrupt beyond it were the broken, precipitous cliffs of granite such as beetle above the mountain tributaries of the American. The rocks, like the river, were black, and looked far colder than the white world which ...
— The Everlasting Whisper • Jackson Gregory

... African mainland. A warm, lazy sea, the sea of the doldrums, sapphire or turquoise, or, in deep shaded pools, a radiant green, joyfully foams itself away against these fairy lands of tossing palm, dense vegetation, rushing cascades, and purple, precipitous peaks. A soil of volcanic origin is covered with a rich humus of decaying vegetation, and this, with a soft humid atmosphere, makes ...
— Cocoa and Chocolate - Their History from Plantation to Consumer • Arthur W. Knapp

... to a more gradual and less precipitous descent, he fixes his eye on some distant point in the earth beneath him, and thither bends his course. He is still almost meteoric in his speed and boldness. You see his path down the heavens, straight as a line; if near, you hear the rush of his wings; his shadow ...
— Wake-Robin • John Burroughs

... specially looking for such a thing, I had my eyes open for it; I had not forgotten our perilous situation of yesterday, and I wished to assure myself. I looked up several gorges that ran out of the valley, but the sides of all seemed to be precipitous. The chase, it is true, kept me from examining them very closely; but it is now time to do so. If there be no pass out of this valley, then are we indeed in trouble. These cliffs are five hundred feet in height—they are perfectly ...
— The Plant Hunters - Adventures Among the Himalaya Mountains • Mayne Reid

... inhabited islands and one uninhabited island, and a few uninhabited islets; strategically located along important sea lanes in northeastern Atlantic; precipitous terrain limits ...
— The 2008 CIA World Factbook • United States. Central Intelligence Agency.

... stolen. The passage through the mountains or over the Divide caused the greatest suffering of the expedition. The men had to cut their way in many places through the brush, clamber over jagged stones and climb such precipitous walls that several of their horses were crippled. Then snow began falling and the nights became very cold. Game seemed to have deserted the country, and the sufferers had to eat all their supply of flour and parched corn. Beginning ...
— Deerfoot in The Mountains • Edward S. Ellis

... There are nowhere twenty steps without a projection and a turn, nor in any ten together is the chasm of the same width or figure. Hence the ascent in its windings is easy and imperceptible quite to the termination, where the rocks are somewhat high and precipitous; at the entrance they lose themselves in privet and elder, and you must make your way between them through the canes. Do not you remember where I carried you both across the ...
— Imaginary Conversations and Poems - A Selection • Walter Savage Landor

... of the wind, and he seemed to hesitate about going on, but we could not very well stay there, and he once more put his horses in motion, while we held fast and prayed silently to the great Deliverer. After stopping again and feeling for the bank, lest we should go over the precipitous hillside, which he knew was there, he proceeded until, with a great plunge, we were in the angry waters, which arose to the wagon-bed, and roared and surged all around us. The horses tried to go on, when something ...
— Half a Century • Jane Grey Cannon Swisshelm

... commenced the ascent of the trail which soon became rough and precipitous, while behind them, under cover of the brush, sneaked ...
— The Mucker • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... by walls and dominated by a great fortress called Sacsahuaman, which stood upon a steep and rocky hill overlooking the capital. On the side toward the city the fortress was practically impregnable on account of the precipitous slopes of the cliffs. The other side was defended by three stone walls laid out in zigzag shape, with salient and reentrant angles (demi-lunes), like an old-fashioned rail fence, with many doors, each closed by stone portcullis, in each wall. Within ...
— South American Fights and Fighters - And Other Tales of Adventure • Cyrus Townsend Brady

... Osborn when the submarine cable was removed from Bolinao and carried on to Manila. Admiral Patricio Montojo went with four ships to await the arrival of the enemy off Subig (Zambales) on the west coast of Luzon. Subig is a fine natural harbour, but with precipitous shores just as Nature has made it. For years the "project" had existed to carry a State railway there from Manila, and make Subig the principal Government Naval Station and Arsenal instead of Cavite. But personal interests and the sloth of the Government combined to frustrate the plan. ...
— The Philippine Islands • John Foreman

... and to-day's breakfast. The strangest thing of all is that these Protean creatures, which seem fitted only for an aquatic existence, should be so much at home on land, so ably using their queer wings as substitutes for legs that they can run up or down high and precipitous slopes with the swiftness of ...
— The Land of Fire - A Tale of Adventure • Mayne Reid

... shore they bent their steps as soon as the little basket had been well filled with strawberries, and descending the precipitous bank, fringed with young saplings, birch, ash, and poplars, they quickly found themselves beside the bright waters of the lake. A flint was soon found among the water-worn stones that lay thickly strewn ...
— Canadian Crusoes - A Tale of The Rice Lake Plains • Catharine Parr Traill

... lead me to the four peaks that crown the summit. The climbing up such rough rocks was very fatiguing; the sides were so indented, that what was gained in one five minutes was often lost in the next. At last, when I reached the ridge, my disappointment was extreme in finding a precipitous valley as deep as the plain, which cut the chain transversely in two, and separated me from the four points. This valley is very narrow, but flat-bottomed, and it forms a fine horse- pass for the Indians, as it connects the plains on the northern and southern sides ...
— The Voyage of the Beagle • Charles Darwin

... that made wading in his condition difficult. But he felt so much better he was able to attempt this, and, keeping near to one side of the current, he began to follow it slowly up-stream. The ascent was at times precipitous, which pleased him, though it depleted his new strength. It was easy in this way to hide his trail, and the higher and faster the stream took him into the mountains the safer he would be from any Calabasas pursuers. When he had regained a little strength ...
— Nan of Music Mountain • Frank H. Spearman

... relief I heard her alight within a few feet, and followed immediately. Now I was at her side, and now we were scrambling and slipping down the precipitous and rocky slope as swiftly as the dense wet fog would let us. I believe that our escape was quite unnoticed. The guard was watching the murder of the merchant, or, if he saw us, he did not venture to leave the carriage door, and the priest who had accepted ...
— Doctor Therne • H. Rider Haggard

... SUDDEN—MOON. "Do we not," writes Brimley, "seem to burst from the narrow steep path down the ravine, whose tall precipitous sides hide the sky and the broad landscape from sight, and come out in a ...
— Selections from Wordsworth and Tennyson • William Wordsworth and Alfred Lord Tennyson

... which they should concentrate. They are irritating the passengers by changing the cabins, confiscating luggage, insisting on higher fares, cutting down the rations, and instructing the sailors in the goose-step; but the ship has no way on her, and the sound of breakers grows louder from a sombre, precipitous, and ...
— Waiting for Daylight • Henry Major Tomlinson

... not a long one, however, for presently the men heard an oath and a crash, and their master vanished; nor could they find him till the dawn came to give them light. Then they discovered that they had halted upon the edge of a small but precipitous cliff, and at the bottom of the donga beneath lay Mavoom—not dead, indeed, but senseless, and with three ribs and his right ankle broken. For some days they nursed him there, till at length he decided upon being carried forward in a litter. So notwithstanding his sufferings, which were intense, ...
— The People Of The Mist • H. Rider Haggard

... they had indeed recovered the long lost trail. They moved silently, sometimes creeping on hands and knees through the long grass where the bank was barren of bushes, sometimes gliding swiftly through a friendly covert of alder or sumach. The hills closed in upon them, and became more precipitous. The stream made another bend, and they were in a ravine where the water flowed over a rocky bed between banks too steep to afford them secure foothold. The Susquehannock swung himself down into the shallow water, and motioned to his ...
— Prisoners of Hope - A Tale of Colonial Virginia • Mary Johnston

... wrath it seemed to him that he was equal to the task of wiping out the entire population of that terrible city. It was nearly noon when he reached the great bowlder at the top of which terminated the secret passage to the pits beneath the city. Like a cat he scaled the precipitous sides of the frowning granite KOPJE. A moment later he was running through the darkness of the long, straight tunnel that led to the treasure vault. Through this he passed, then on and on until at last he came to the well-like shaft upon the opposite side of which lay ...
— The Return of Tarzan • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... the edge of the ledge on which he stood was not more than seven or eight feet. It was possible, he perceived, for one to continue along and down this natural path to the bottom of the hill, coming out among the trees in the low ground. The descent, however, was a great deal more precipitous than the ascent ...
— Quill's Window • George Barr McCutcheon

... are generally diversified by canyons and buttes, whose precipitous sides break down into long ranges of rocky talus and sandy foothills. The arid character of this district is especially pronounced about the margin of the plateau. In the immediate vicinity of the villages ...
— A Study of Pueblo Architecture: Tusayan and Cibola • Victor Mindeleff and Cosmos Mindeleff

... in a moment, breathlessly scanning the onrushing spider-webs. For a moment he was minded to run, and then thought of the ravine, and turned back. He ran aside once to dodge one drifting terror, and then he was swiftly clambering down the precipitous sides, and out of the touch of ...
— Twelve Stories and a Dream • H. G. Wells

... face of the crags behind him. They hunted where the starlight made deep pits of gloom in the twisting edge of the mountains. They went from rock to rock and from tree to tree until at last they rested upon a giant spruce which hung out over the precipitous wall of the ridge, its thick top beckoning and sighing to the black rocks that shot up out of the snow ...
— The Honor of the Big Snows • James Oliver Curwood

... Bay is a primeval place, a deep-cut, narrow notch in the tip of Carnrick, and is walled by cliffs so high and so precipitous that they exclude a view of anything except the ocean. The bay opens due west; and its white barriers were now developing a violet tinge, for this was on a sullen afternoon, and the sea was ruffled by spiteful gusts. Wycherley could ...
— The Certain Hour • James Branch Cabell

... The precipitous bank upon which the city lies piled, reflected in the still deep waters at its base, greatly enhances the romantic beauty of the situation. The mellow and serene glow of the autumnal day harmonised ...
— Roughing it in the Bush • Susanna Moodie

... best, as little honest as he could, And, like white witches[81], mischievously good. To his first bias longingly he leans; And rather would be great by wicked means. Thus framed for ill, he loosed our triple hold[82]; Advice unsafe, precipitous, and bold. From hence those tears! that Ilium of our woe! Who helps a powerful friend, forearms a foe. What wonder if the waves prevail so far, When he cut down the banks that made the bar? 70 Seas follow but their nature to invade; But he by art our native strength betray'd. So Samson to his ...
— The Poetical Works of John Dryden, Vol I - With Life, Critical Dissertation, and Explanatory Notes • John Dryden

... a deep ditch and glacis beyond; but there was no covered way, and both the scarp and counterscarp were simple earthen embankments; so that, had the ditch been filled up with fascines, there was no wall to face the attacking force after crossing it,—nothing but a green mound, precipitous enough, certainly, and crowned with a low parapet of masonry, and bristling with batteries about half way down, so that the muzzles of the guns were flush with the neighbouring country beyond the ditch. ...
— Tom Cringle's Log • Michael Scott

... is like the shade of some precipitous bank with crumbling sides, which, falling, ...
— Book of Wise Sayings - Selected Largely from Eastern Sources • W. A. Clouston

... enclosure), from which there is a wooden passage, having many contrivances useful for marking, branding, and dehorning cattle, all of which are used in their due season; but for dipping purposes this passage terminates in a precipitous slope, and the animals are gently forced along it from the corral to plunge suddenly into a prepared bath of a strong solution, which kills every tick; so it follows, that if the animal has been totally submerged, it is absolutely free from the parasite. The ...
— Argentina From A British Point Of View • Various

... of the most precipitous torrents he traces with the same rigid fidelity, swooping down the inclines of cascades, dropping sheer over dizzy falls amid the spray, and ascending with the same fearlessness and ease, seldom seeking to lessen the steepness of the acclivity by beginning to ascend ...
— The California Birthday Book • Various

... in the hills, seeming to make the houses and trees and the very earth to tremble with the glorious storm of sound. Walking past the church, I followed the streamlet that runs through the town and out by a cleft between the hills to a narrow marshy valley, on the other side of which are precipitous hills, clothed from base to summit in oak woods. As I walked through the cleft the musical roar of the bells followed, and was like a mighty current flowing through and over me; but as I came out the sound from behind ceased suddenly and was now in front, coming back from the ...
— Afoot in England • W.H. Hudson

... where the current runs deep. Rocky hills now began to show themselves to the east of us; we passed the sheet of water known by the name of Lake George, and came to a little river which appeared to have its source at the foot of a precipitous ridge on the British side. It is called Garden River, and a little beyond it, on the same side, lies Garden Village, inhabited by the Indians. It was now deserted, the Indians having gone to attend a great assemblage of their race, held on one of the Manitoulin ...
— Letters of a Traveller - Notes of Things Seen in Europe and America • William Cullen Bryant

... ladders, and ropes. The road lay amidst brushwood and underwood, over rolling stones, always upwards higher and higher in the dark night. Waters roared beneath them, or fell in cascades from above. Humid clouds were driving through the air as the hunters reached the precipitous ledge of the rock. It was even darker here, for the sides of the rocks almost met, and the light penetrated only through a small opening at the top. At a little distance from the edge could be heard the sound of the roaring, foaming waters in the ...
— Fairy Tales of Hans Christian Andersen • Hans Christian Andersen

... prisoners; and as the power of the eastern tempest had gradually diminished, a light current from the south, that blew directly along the land, prevailed; and, though the ocean still rolled in fearful billows, their surfaces were smooth, and they were becoming, at each moment, less precipitous and more regular. The eyes of the horsemen were cast in vain over the immense expanse of water that was glistening brightly under the rays of the sun, which had just risen from its bosom, in quest ...
— The Pilot • J. Fenimore Cooper

... scenic interest little inferior to that of the Pictured Rocks. The explorer passes abruptly from a coast of consolidated sand to one of loose materials; and although in the one case the cliffs are less precipitous, yet in the other they attain a higher altitude. He sees before him a long reach of coast, resembling a vast sand-bank, more than three hundred and fifty feet in height, without a trace of vegetation. Ascending to the top, rounded hillocks of blown sand are observed, with occasional clumps of trees ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

... through his holy word), until the people came with their possessions to the place where the town is called Bethlem: the glad-hearted chieftain and his brother's 1800 son, pious men, went forward over the storied land from the east, with their possessions, over the precipitous mountain-sides, and chose a dwelling-place for them- selves where the fields seemed bright ...
— Genesis A - Translated from the Old English • Anonymous

... Nottinghamshire (burnt down in 1761), there was a large concealed chamber provided with a fireplace and a bed, which could only be entered by removing the sheets of lead forming the roofing. Beneath was a trap-door opening to a precipitous flight of narrow steps in the thickness of a wall. This led to a secret chamber, that had an inner hiding-place at the back of a sliding panel. A witness in a trial succeeding "the '45" declared to having seen a large quantity of arms there in ...
— Secret Chambers and Hiding Places • Allan Fea

... desolate part of the road, which passed through a valley shut in on all sides by mountains, some of them snowy, all wild and precipitous, and looking strangely desolate in the falling light. Erica could not help contrasting it with the view from the amphitheatre at Fiesole, of that wider amphitheatre of green hills all glowing with light and love. But presently came ...
— We Two • Edna Lyall

... put her foot on a sunny slope clad with innocent-looking flowers; but more and more precipitous at every step, ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 103, May, 1866 • Various

... flit along the shore, or in the most friendly manner board your steamer to feed on the crumbs from your tea-table, while large numbers of gay-plumaged king-fishers dart in and out from their nests tunnelled far into the precipitous face of ...
— Peeps at Many Lands: Egypt • R. Talbot Kelly

... piled, it was also the last sheaf to be lifted. It travelled to the stack on the summit of the last load, and, by a happy chance, formed one of the outside layer. By scratching and gnawing continuously for an hour, he worked his way to the butt of it, paused for a moment on the precipitous steep, and then scrambled lightly down to earth. A perpendicular descent ...
— "Wee Tim'rous Beasties" - Studies of Animal life and Character • Douglas English

... obstacle was a deep canon with precipitous walls. This, however, was not a serious impediment, for the life feathers, as before, helped them to cross it in one bound. By nightfall the boys had arrived at a broad, beautiful meadow where lived the Wosakidi, or ...
— The North American Indian • Edward S. Curtis

... descending cautiously to his side, taking my turn in pioneering downward, receiving the freight of knapsacks as before. In this manner we consumed more that half the afternoon in descending a thousand feet of broken, precipitous slope; and it was almost sunset when we found ourselves upon fields of level snow which lay white and thick over the whole interior slope of the amphitheatre. The gorge below us seemed utterly impassable. At our backs the Mount Brewer wall either rose in sheer cliffs or in broken, rugged ...
— Little Masterpieces of Science: Explorers • Various

... nothing fresh occurred, I yielded to the pleasant swaying motion of the litter, and went to sleep again. I was dreadfully tired. When I woke I found that we were passing through a rocky defile of a lava formation with precipitous sides, in which grew many ...
— She • H. Rider Haggard

... nearer. He had almost reached it when a dim shape broke out from a thicket at the bottom of the slope. There were still some cartridges in his rifle cylinder, but he was slipping and sliding down an almost precipitous declivity at such a rate that it was impossible to stop and shoot. Indeed, in another moment he fell violently into a brake and had some difficulty in smashing through it, but when he struggled free he saw shingle and boulders in front of him and Lisle ...
— The Long Portage • Harold Bindloss

... rank. For here your first duty is this: to fight in rank and file; and your second: to annihilate all those who refuse to form part of the rank and file. On the other path you will have but few fellow-travellers: it is more arduous, winding and precipitous; and those who take the first path will mock you, for your progress is more wearisome, and they will try to lure you over into their own ranks. When the two paths happen to cross, however, you will be roughly handled and thrust aside, or ...
— On the Future of our Educational Institutions • Friedrich Nietzsche

... enwrapped them in clouds. The untempered sun had beat down a palpitating heat upon dry sand wastes. The hill cattle he was driving were as wild as deer. A dozen times some lean steer had bolted and gone racing down a precipitous hillside like a rabbit. As often Four Bits had wheeled in its tracks and pounded through clutching cholla and down breakneck inclines after the escaping three-year-old. Fierce cactus thorns had torn at the leather chaps as horse and rider had ripped through them, zigzagging across ...
— Steve Yeager • William MacLeod Raine

... The green and precipitous elevations that stood ranged around the head of the vale where Marheyo's habitation was situated effectually precluded all hope of escape in that quarter, even if I could have stolen away from the thousand ...
— Typee - A Romance of the South Sea • Herman Melville

... island in 1849, and landed on it under unfavorable circumstances, describes it as an inaccessible rock. The sides are, indeed, in general, extremely sheer and precipitous all around, though skilled mountaineers would find many gullies and slopes by which they might reach the summit. I first pushed on to the head of the glacier valley, and thence along the back bone of the island to the highest point, which I found to be ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 312, December 24, 1881 • Various

... calamitous of the landslips occurred on the sea-coast of the Straits of Messina, near the celebrated rock of Scilla, where huge masses fell from the tall cliffs, overwhelming many villas and gardens. At Gian Greco a continuous line of precipitous rocks, nearly a mile in length, tumbled down. The aged Prince of Scilla, after the first great shock on the 5th of February, persuaded many of his vassals to quit the dangerous shore, and take refuge in the fishing boats—he himself showing the example. That ...
— The San Francisco Calamity • Various

... from his shoulder, tied one end to the brass stump, threw the coil down the precipitous side. It fell away into darkness, hung swaying. It was impossible to tell whether the end reached any solid footing below. He couldn't waste any more time looking for help. He would have to ...
— It Could Be Anything • John Keith Laumer

... stones at the criminal, but there was a solemn and appointed method of execution which is preserved for us in detail in the Rabbinical books. And from it we gather that the modus operandi was this. The blasphemer was taken to a certain precipitous rock, the height of which was prescribed as being equal to that of two men. The witnesses by whose testimony he had been condemned had to cast him over, and if he survived the fall it was their ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts • Alexander Maclaren

... twenty acres in extent. They confided that task to me, and I marked out two equal portions of land. One included the higher part of this enclosure, from the cloudy pinnacle of that rock, whence springs the river of Fan-Palms, to that precipitous cleft which you see on the summit of the mountain, and which, from its resemblance in form to the battlement of a fortress, is called the Embrasure. It is difficult to find a path along this wild portion of the enclosure, the soil of which is encumbered with fragments of rock, or ...
— Paul and Virginia • Bernardin de Saint Pierre

... reached the limits of the world, marched resolutely back to Perth. The only road that then led through this Valley of the Shadow of Death was a rugged path, so narrow that not more than three men could walk abreast, winding along the edge of a precipitous cliff at the foot of which thundered the black waters of the Garry. Balfour's regiment led the van of this perilous march: the baggage was in the centre, guarded by Mackay's own battalion: Annandale's horse and Hastings' foot brought up ...
— Claverhouse • Mowbray Morris

... becoming precipitous cliffs, the drag made dismal groans; Aubrey, after a great slip forward, looking injured, anchored himself, with his feet against the seat, by Ethel; and Dr. Spencer was effectually wakened by an involuntary ...
— The Trial - or, More Links of the Daisy Chain • Charlotte M. Yonge

... fortalice had perched his eyrie. The pale moon, which had hitherto been contending with flitting clouds, now shone out, and gave them a view of the solitary and naked tower, situated on a projecting cliff that beetled on the German Ocean. On three sides the rock was precipitous; on the fourth, which was that towards the land, it had been originally fenced by an artificial ditch and drawbridge, but the latter was broken down and ruinous, and the former had been in part filled up, ...
— Bride of Lammermoor • Sir Walter Scott

... except, perhaps, some single arch or gateway, which stands among a mass of shapeless mounds, the last remaining relic of the edifice it once adorned, and itself tottering, perhaps, on the brink of its precipitous foundation, as if just ...
— Rollo on the Rhine • Jacob Abbott

... Bellerophon had a pretty distinct view of the mountainous part of Lycia, and could look into all its shadowy vales at once. At first there appeared to be nothing remarkable. It was a wild, savage, and rocky tract of high and precipitous hills. In the more level part of the country, there were the ruins of houses that had been burnt, and, here and there, the carcasses of dead cattle, strewn about the pastures where ...
— Myths That Every Child Should Know - A Selection Of The Classic Myths Of All Times For Young People • Various

... scrambled to the top of the precipitous ascent and found themselves upon the broken edge of the forest amid a black chaos of piled up rock and underbrush. Evidently, the land here was giving way, little by little, for here and there they could see a tree canting tipsily over the edge, its network of half-exposed roots making a last gallant ...
— Tom Slade with the Boys Over There • Percy K. Fitzhugh

... bank, and could travel along it to the west. Just there, I perceived the junction of a river (perhaps the main channel) from the N. N. W. It seemed full of water, whereas that which I was obliged to follow, being the most westerly, was nearly dry, although its banks were boldly broken, and precipitous. Its course came round even from S. W., and deep ravines and water-courses coming into it, obliged me to travel to the southward of that bearing in order to avoid them. We thus, at length, came into a fine open ...
— Journal of an Expedition into the Interior of Tropical Australia • Thomas Mitchell

... group of lads. It was safe to describe places and people, and he so described them that The Squad squirmed in its delight at feeling itself marching in a procession attending the Emperor in Vienna; standing in line before palaces; climbing, with knapsacks strapped tight, up precipitous mountain roads; defending mountain-fortresses; and storming ...
— The Lost Prince • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... village, with the castle behind it, was out of sight. At the bottom of the valley, sheets of water were seen spreading out right and left, with wooded hills rising immediately from their opposite margin, and, at the end of the upper water, a wall of sharp, precipitous rocks directly overhanging it, their huge forms reflected in its level surface. In the hollow of the ravine, where a considerable brook ran into the lake, lay a mill, half hidden among the trees, a sweetly retired spot, most beautifully ...
— The German Classics of The Nineteenth and Twentieth Centuries, Vol. II • Editor-in-Chief: Kuno Francke

... observed by me many times on many fields during several successive years. After such gales, the castings present a gently inclined and smooth, or sometimes furrowed, surface to windward, while they are steeply inclined or precipitous to leeward, so that they resemble on a miniature scale glacier-ground hillocks of rock. They are often cavernous on the leeward side, from the upper part having curled over the lower part. During one unusually heavy south-west gale with ...
— The Formation of Vegetable Mould through the action of worms with • Charles Darwin

... defensive positions. As soon as we passed the point above designated (about three miles from the top of the mountains), we dismounted and formed a line of battle on a ridge circling to the rear. Our right rested on a precipitous ravine and the left was protected by a marshy run that was easily held against the enemy. The mules were sent into a ravine to the rear of our right, where they were protected from the enemy's bullets. I also deployed a line of skirmishers, resting on our right ...
— The Battle of Atlanta - and Other Campaigns, Addresses, Etc. • Grenville M. Dodge

... observing that the stay had not been thoroughly fixed in the hurry of their departure, he looked about for a suitable landing-place, where the finishing touches might be given. The coast was rocky and precipitous, and the tops of the cliffs were strewn for a considerable distance inland with innumerable boulders, large and small, which would render landing dangerous, and starting perhaps more dangerous still. At length, however, just as he was thinking ...
— Round the World in Seven Days • Herbert Strang

... party strayed along the crest in search of the first wild pansies. Rezanov and Concha looked under the sloping roof of brittle leaves into dim falling vistas, arches, arbors, caverns, a forest in miniature with natural terraces breaking the precipitous wall ...
— Rezanov • Gertrude Atherton

... called the Back of the Island,) being washed by the impetuous tides of the ocean, presents a very different aspect, showing the resistless progress of the waves:—and hence perpendicular cliffs of great altitude, precipitous slopes constantly detaching large masses of earth and rocks, and all the picturesque confusion produced by successive landslips: here therefore the scenery is variously characterized by dreary devastation, romantic ...
— Brannon's Picture of The Isle of Wight • George Brannon

... friend, now no more) a canary bird from its cage. The wild geranium was already showing its pink stem and scarlet-edged leaves, themselves almost gorgeous enough to pass for flowers; the periwinkle, with its wreaths of shining foliage, was hanging in garlands over the precipitous descent; and the lily of the valley, the fragrant woodroof, and the silvery wild garlick, were just peeping from the earth in the most sheltered nooks. Charmed to find myself surrounded by so much beauty, I had scrambled, with much ado, to the top of the woody cliff, (no other word can convey an ...
— The Ground-Ash • Mary Russell Mitford

... paddled to the southwestern point, which Goork said he believed to be the least frequented portion of the island, as he had never seen boats put off from there. I found a shallow reef running far out into the sea and rather precipitous cliffs running almost to the surf. It was a nasty place to land, and I realized now why it was not used by the natives; but at last I managed, after a good wetting, to beach my canoe and scale ...
— Pellucidar • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... formidable abatis across the narrowest part of it. Just in front of the abatis there was open ground for perhaps two hundred yards. South of the open was a deep ravine. The road ran on the east side of the cleared place, and the banks of the river were high and precipitous. The center of the open space rose into a swell, sloping gently away both to the north and south. On the crest of the swell Moore had thrown up a slight earthwork, which was manned when we approached. An officer was promptly ...
— Famous Adventures And Prison Escapes of the Civil War • Various

... strong, they are coming to kill you and all of us. We must away into the karitya!" And with this he leaped from the brink. He had selected a spot where the rim was precipitous for a short distance. Over he went! A cry of anguish and of helpless despair was heard; then followed a series of thuds, as though a heavy body were falling from step to step. From the depths below a faint moaning ...
— The Delight Makers • Adolf Bandelier

... Colombian valleys, the narrow and rugged passages, the wild beasts,—sink into nothingness as compared with the almost unconquerable obstacles which he was to face on his way to the South. In no other part of the continent do the Andes present such an appalling combination of ravines, torrents, precipitous paths and gigantic peaks. Furthermore, nowhere on the continent was the population so hostile to freedom as were the pastusos (inhabitants of the Pastos). Men, women and children cordially hated the cause of the Republic, and stopped ...
— Simon Bolivar, the Liberator • Guillermo A. Sherwell

... collar of his coat. We thanked him for his kindness, and persevered on our journey. Our road lay nearly all on the descent, and while it was good, and the daylight lasted, we hurried forward with all speed. At length it became very rocky and precipitous; and, as the light soon failed entirely, it became necessary to mount the portmanteau, as it was not possible for any biped to sustain it longer on their head, and to maintain their equilibrium as well. From very bad, things got to ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine — Volume 57, No. 351, January 1845 • Various

... interesting than in the neighborhood of Knockhouse, the residence of Mr. Elder, which I found pleasingly situated at the bottom of a little open bay, skirted with picturesque knolls partially wooded, that present to the surf precipitous fronts of rock. One insulated eminence, a gun-shot from the dwelling-house, that presents to the sea two mural fronts of precipice, and sinks in steep grassy slopes on two sides more, bears atop a fine old ruin. There is a blind-fronted massy keep, wrapped up in a mantle ...
— The Cruise of the Betsey • Hugh Miller

... of Switzerland, and then as I gazed, more and more enraptured by the delirious orgy of multi-colored hues, and looked at the precipitous ascent we had made; at the heights we had yet to climb, and at the undulating peaks that stood like an army of sentinels guarding us on every side, I forgot I was in the land of Nevada. I had drifted into an Arabian Night reverie, ...
— Reno - A Book of Short Stories and Information • Lilyan Stratton

... henceforth to be their home. Cold, indeed, was the welcome which they received from their adopted country; and cheerless was the view that met their gaze, as they landed on a massy rock of granite, at the foot of a precipitous cliff, and looked along the barren, inhospitable shore, and over the dark waters which they had so ...
— The Pilgrims of New England - A Tale Of The Early American Settlers • Mrs. J. B. Webb

... A precipitous flight of steps, where all was steeped in darkness, descended from the narrow entry. It was with infinite precaution that Pierre ventured into the gloom, which ever grew denser and denser. He lowered his feet gently so as to make no noise, and ...
— The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete - Lourdes, Rome and Paris • Emile Zola

... raising their stately forms and pointing their long dark fingers sternly at the intruders on their solitude; graceful birches; and here and there a whispering larch or a nodding pine. The other wall of the valley, or glen, is less precipitous, and its sides are densely wooded, and fringed with barberry bushes ...
— Queen Hildegarde • Laura Elizabeth Howe Richards

... boarded a six AM train for Parahyba do Sul, which we reached about ten o'clock. It is a charming town situated on the river by the same name. This river reminds one of the French Broad, though the mountains are not so high and precipitous as the North Carolina mountains. The mountains, too, in this section are not covered with trees, but with a tall grass, which, being in bloom, gave a beautiful purple color to the landscape. The railroad climbs up the mountain sides from ...
— Brazilian Sketches • T. B. Ray

... reached the fountain, "Ain el Gaml," or "Sebeel Iskandrooni," and from there to "Ain el Medfooni;" the road was again very rocky and in some parts precipitous. Lady Montefiore being an excellent rider, galloped along rather heedlessly, and her horse rushed right into the sea. Apprehending danger, I galloped after and succeeded in overtaking her, and in seizing the bridle of her horse. In doing so my own horse stumbled and threw me ...
— Diaries of Sir Moses and Lady Montefiore, Volume I • Sir Moses Montefiore

... Broadstairs has good sands, precipitous chalk cliffs, and a very fine sea-view. The railway station is about a mile from the pier, and the town is approached by a well-kept road ("the main street of our watering-place. . . . You may know it by its being always stopped up with donkey chaises. Whenever you ...
— A Week's Tramp in Dickens-Land • William R. Hughes

... city of Chungking—which would have barred the advance of the Northern troops permanently as the river defiles even when lightly defended are impassable here to the strongest force. It was largely due to the hardships of forced marches conducted over these rugged mountains, which raise their precipitous peaks to the heavens, that Tsao-ao subsequently lost his life, his health being undermined by exposure, tuberculosis finally claiming him. But one thing at least did his resolute action secure. With Yunnan in open revolt and several other provinces about to follow ...
— The Fight For The Republic in China • Bertram Lenox Putnam Weale

... be, the first attack on Castiglione was certainly left to this determined fighter; and the mingling of boldness and guile which he showed on the following day regained for the French not only the village, but also the castle, perched on a precipitous rock. Yet the report of Colonel Graham, who was then at Marshal Wuermser's headquarters, somewhat dulls the lustre of Augereau's exploit; for the British officer asserts that the Austrian position had been taken up quite by haphazard, and that fewer than 15,000 white-coats ...
— The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2) • John Holland Rose



Words linked to "Precipitous" :   steep, precipice, hurried, precipitate



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