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Refinement   /rəfˈaɪnmənt/   Listen
Refinement

noun
1.
A highly developed state of perfection; having a flawless or impeccable quality.  Synonyms: cultivation, culture, finish, polish.  "I admired the exquisite refinement of his prose" , "Almost an inspiration which gives to all work that finish which is almost art"
2.
The result of improving something.  Synonym: elaboration.
3.
The process of removing impurities (as from oil or metals or sugar etc.).  Synonyms: purification, refining.
4.
A subtle difference in meaning or opinion or attitude.  Synonyms: nicety, nuance, shade, subtlety.  "Don't argue about shades of meaning"
5.
The quality of excellence in thought and manners and taste.  Synonyms: civilisation, civilization.  "He is remembered for his generosity and civilization"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Refinement" Quotes from Famous Books



... impressions they made on him were so much the deeper. In this way Lincoln acquired the rudiments of education. When Abraham was scarcely nine years old, his excellent mother died. His father married again, and fortunately for young Lincoln, his stepmother was a lady of refinement, who took the greatest interest in her rugged but talented step-son. She sent him to a private school for a while, and Abraham learned many useful things and easily kept at the head of his class. His stepmother also procured more books for him, for ...
— Reading Made Easy for Foreigners - Third Reader • John L. Huelshof

... homes, simply to recreate their overburdened minds. Such cases, doubtless, are far less common than they were fifty years ago: but why? Is not the decrease of drinking among the richer classes certainly due to the increased refinement and variety of their tastes and occupations? In cultivating the aesthetic side of man's nature; in engaging him with the beautiful, the pure, the wonderful, the truly natural; with painting, poetry, music, horticulture, physical science—in all this lies recreation, in the true and literal ...
— Health and Education • Charles Kingsley

... ball-room and the opera in this country. A band of musicians render music from an elevated platform all evening, and an open space in front of the platform is provided for the accommodation of those who delight in the dance. The waiting girls of these cafes are usually ladies of remarkable beauty and refinement, whose elegant dresses, graceful manners and rare accomplishment in conversation and address, are well in keeping with the charming brilliancy of the hall, and the merryand ...
— The Youthful Wanderer - An Account of a Tour through England, France, Belgium, Holland, Germany • George H. Heffner

... successful planning and carrying to their ends of commercial and financial schemes, the absolute genius of penetration and calculation of the sordid and uneducated little trader in skins and barterer of goods, having filtered through two generations of gradual education and refinement of existence, which was no longer that of the mere trader, had been transformed in the great-granddaughter into keen, clear sight, level-headed perceptiveness and a logical sense of values. As the first Reuben had known by instinct the values of pelts and lands, Bettina ...
— The Shuttle • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... instead of the ancient nitrum, which could not now be procured; and appealed to the marquis, whether such a succedaneum was not an improvement on the whole. The unfortunate petit-maitre, driven to the extremity of his condescension, acknowledged it to be a masterly refinement; and deeming himself obliged, in point of honour, to evince his sentiments by his practice, forced a few more mouthfuls of this disagreeable potion down his throat, till his stomach was so much offended, ...
— The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle, Volume I • Tobias Smollett

... boy with a face of great refinement and delicacy, climbed out of the wagon and looked about. Dick busied himself with the work of making camp, letting Albert ...
— The Last of the Chiefs - A Story of the Great Sioux War • Joseph Altsheler

... during the time that our friend can be with us? Hospitality, to my thinking, is a virtue, a pleasure, and a luxury; but in whatever light it is considered, nay, even if you regard it as a speculation, ought not our guest or our friend to be made much of? Ought not every refinement of luxury ...
— The Country Doctor • Honore de Balzac

... produce a conviction of declining virtue, which is unfavorable to generous emulation, yet a people at once ignorant and irreverential would necessarily become licentious. Nevertheless, such prejudices ought to be modified. It is untrue that in the period of a nation's rise from disorder to refinement it is not able to continually surpass itself. We see the present, plainly, distinctly, with all its coarse outlines, its rough inequalities, its dark blots, and its glaring deformities. We hear all its tumultuous sounds and jarring discords. ...
— Christopher Columbus and His Monument Columbia • Various

... please, it is more euphonious Yes, I was at school in Leicester two years, and was called the best grammarian there, but since I've sojourned with this kind of people, I've nearly lost my refinement. To be sure I aim at exclusiveness, and now you've come I shall cut them all, with the exception of Uncle Peter, who would be rather genteel if he ...
— The English Orphans • Mary Jane Holmes

... through these transitions of taste, and he found intervals to travel, and time to read, and opportunity to indulge, as far as he could with the eye only, his passion for knowledge in the arts. To all that appertained to the refinement of himself, he applied the fine feelers of a delicate and passionate construction, physical and mental, and, as the reader will already have included, wasted on culture comparatively unprofitable, faculties that would have ...
— Stories by American Authors (Volume 4) • Constance Fenimore Woolson

... live in the city, as he is so wealthy; Mary will have an opportunity of tasting the fascinations of high life. I shall introduce her to a clique of great refinement at once. Don't you think Saratoga the most delightful place in the world, Miss Wyllys? I am never so happy as when here. I delight so much in the gay world; it appears to me that I breathe more freely in a crowd—solitude oppresses me; do ...
— Elinor Wyllys - Vol. I • Susan Fenimore Cooper

... royal if not divine. It is necessary to add that the upper lip beneath the nose is lightly shaded by a charming down. Nature would have made a blunder had she not cast that tender mist upon the face. The ears are delicately convoluted,—a sign of secret refinement. The bust is large, the waist slim and sufficiently rounded. The hips are not prominent, but very graceful; the line of the thighs is magnificent, recalling Bacchus rather than the Venus Callipyge. There we may see the shadowy line of demarcation which separates nearly every woman of genius from ...
— Beatrix • Honore de Balzac

... "would be a refinement of cruelty, and I won't consent to its being done. Wanting to kill the man was bad enough. I never liked it. But what you propose now is infinitely worse. Why can't you forgive the wretched creature, and then ...
— The Simpkins Plot • George A. Birmingham

... their fiery steeds, render them appropriate auxiliaries to royalty, in countries where such attributes of power are requisite to impress the people with the importance of their rulers, and where the milder aids of civilization and refinement are wanting to protect the sovereign ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 10, Issue 281, November 3, 1827 • Various

... be sacred to God and to the church. It should be a true exponent of the social elements of Christianity. It should not be a hermitage, a state of seclusion from the world; but should conform to fashion, yet so far only as the laws of a sanctified taste and refinement will admit. ...
— The Christian Home • Samuel Philips

... upon. And, third, that the world has a right to be free from every disturbance of its peace that has its origin in aggression and disregard of the rights of peoples and nations." These words sum up the gist of his international aims during the three following years. His later speeches are merely refinement ...
— Woodrow Wilson and the World War - A Chronicle of Our Own Times. • Charles Seymour

... language, customs and laws. The river Garonne separates the Gauls from the Aquitani; the Marne and the Seine separate them from the Belgae. Of all these, the Belgae are the bravest, because they are farthest from the civilisation and refinement of [our] Province, and merchants least frequently resort to them and import those things which tend to effeminate the mind; and they are the nearest to the Germans, who dwell beyond the Rhine, with whom they are continually ...
— "De Bello Gallico" and Other Commentaries • Caius Julius Caesar

... best, but after it has passed its culmination, and is already on the verge of decline. This condition of things is exemplified in Beowulf; and the Sagas also, here and there, show signs of over-refinement and exhaustion. In the extant mass of old French epic this condition is enormously exaggerated. The Song of Roland itself, even in its earliest extant form, is comparatively late and unoriginal; while the remainder of French epic poetry, in all its variety, is much less ...
— Epic and Romance - Essays on Medieval Literature • W. P. Ker

... time while in the act of kissing her hand; and how, on the very eve of a proposal to beautiful Constance de Courcy, whose manner, bearing, and appearance, no less than her name, denoted the extreme of refinement and high birth, he had sustained a shock, galvanic but salutary, from her artless exclamation, "O my! whatever shall I do? If ...
— M. or N. "Similia similibus curantur." • G.J. Whyte-Melville

... certain stiffness of moral attitude derived from his mother.' He reveals already a wonderful palate for pure literary flavour. His prejudices are intense, their character being determined by the refinement and idealism of his nature. All this is profoundly significant, knowing as we do that this was produced when Gissing's worldly prosperity was at its nadir. He was living at the time, like his own Harold Biffen, in absolute ...
— The House of Cobwebs and Other Stories • George Gissing

... only points in which our city is worthy of admiration. We cultivate refinement without extravagance and knowledge without effeminacy; wealth we employ more for use than for show, and place the real disgrace of poverty not in owning to the fact but in declining the struggle against it. Our public men have, besides politics, their private affairs to attend to, and ...
— The History of the Peloponnesian War • Thucydides

... to come on board, and then conducted him to my state-room. He was not more than thirty-five, and was dressed rather jauntily in a suit of light-colored clothes. He looked and acted like a gentleman, and his speech indicated that he was a person of refinement. I gave him a chair, and took one myself. Washburn had gone ashore in one of the boats, and I had the room to myself. Before he seated himself he handed me a card, on which was engraved "Kirby Cornwood." There was nothing more ...
— Down South - or, Yacht Adventure in Florida • Oliver Optic

... her most prosaic purposes. She liked to think of her beauty as a power for good, as giving her the opportunity to attain a position where she should make her influence felt in the vague diffusion of refinement and good taste. She was fond of pictures and flowers, and of sentimental fiction, and she could not help thinking that the possession of such tastes ennobled her desire for worldly advantages. She would not indeed have cared to marry a man who was merely rich: she was ...
— House of Mirth • Edith Wharton

... or trusted her. Yet, little by little, during their last separation, his belief in her, and his respect for her, had grown in her estimation, because they alone still connected her with the maidenliness and feminine refinement in which she had grown up. Lushington had broken a link that ...
— The Primadonna • F. Marion Crawford

... even before the Sybarite had had time carefully to test and swallow another mouthful of wine, the speaker, Kallias, the son of Phaenippus of Athens, was already standing by the side of Rhodopis. He was a tall thin man of over sixty, with a head of that oval form which gives the impression of refinement and intellect. One of the richest among the Athenian exiles, he had twice bought the possessions of Pisistratus from the state, and twice been obliged to surrender them, on the tyrant's return to power. Looking round with his clear keen eyes on this circle of acquaintances, ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... English poetry, the circumstance was eminently propitious; since it is from the return of this noble traveller that we are to date not only the introduction into our language of the Petrarchan sonnet, and with it of a tenderness and refinement of sentiment unknown to the barbarism of our preceding versifiers; but what is much more, that of heroic blank verse; a noble measure, of which the earliest example exists in Surry's spirited and faithful version of ...
— Memoirs of the Court of Queen Elizabeth • Lucy Aikin

... congregation in the Tabernacle, Heber C. Kimball once alluded to his wives by the endearing epithet of "my heifers;" and on another occasion politely spoke of them as "his cows." The phraseology may possibly be a slight indication of the refinement of manners prevalent in Salt Lake City.) He says ...
— The Complete Works of Artemus Ward, Part 6 • Charles Farrar Browne

... daughters, as they rise to a position due to great wealth, the small questions of decorum, and the details of business take up a large part of the reader's attention; but they are treated with such ease, naturalness, repressed humor, refinement of art, and truth in sketching provincial types of character, that the story is a triumph of realistic creation. A Modern Instance is not so pleasant a book, but the attention is firmly held by the strong, realistic presentation of the jealousy, the ...
— History of American Literature • Reuben Post Halleck

... who are making their way slowly and surely to competence and wealth, who would gladly compromise for one-third of such a summer vacation. These are men of intelligence, and sometimes of a good deal of social and intellectual culture and refinement. Many of them were born, and their boyhood nurtured amongst the hills. They love the country with the intensity and purity of a first love, and they long for communion once more with nature in all her moods of ...
— Woodward's Country Homes • George E. Woodward

... me vaguely ask myself whether he were henpecked,—a shocking conjecture, which I instantly dismissed. Mrs. Ambient was quite such a wife as I should have expected him to have; slim and fair, with a long neck and pretty eyes and an air of great refinement. She was a little cold, and a little shy; but she was very sweet, and she had a certain look of race, justified by my afterwards learning that she was "connected" with two or three great families. I have seen poets married ...
— The Author of Beltraffio • Henry James

... family, the Christianity which they received was so thoroughly imbibed and so completely carried out that any thing in the least opposed to it was sternly rejected by the whole nation. Hence they became a people of peculiar habits. Rejecting the harsh features of feudalism, not caring for the refinement of the so-called revival of learning, sternly opposed at all times to Protestantism, they would have naught to do with what was rejected or even suspected by the Church, until in our days they offer to ...
— Irish Race in the Past and the Present • Aug. J. Thebaud

... continual specialisation, subdivision, and refinement in the arts of distribution. The multiplication of merchants, agents, retailers, which, in spite of forces making for centralisation in distributive work, is so marked a feature in the English industry of the last forty years, is a natural result of the influence of machinery, ...
— The Evolution of Modern Capitalism - A Study of Machine Production • John Atkinson Hobson

... lack refinement, but they palpitate with life. His pages present a wonderful variety of characters, chosen from almost all walks of life. He could draw admirable portraits of women. Thackeray says of Amelia, the heroine of the ...
— Halleck's New English Literature • Reuben P. Halleck

... position. She often said to herself, "I am thankful that I don't belong to the common folk; it would grate on my nerves to witness their vulgarities,—their bad taste would torture me; their want of refinement would act upon my nature like a blister. But I am not proud, I uphold my dignity, I respect myself and my family, but with sinful, unholy ...
— The Honorable Miss - A Story of an Old-Fashioned Town • L. T. Meade

... Alabama, in a part of the country that boasted of the refinement and intelligence of its society. When I was alone with boys much younger than myself I could say smart things, and I had a hope that when I should go into formal "company" I would, with one evening's achievement, place myself high above the numbskulls who had giggled at me. The time came. ...
— The Jucklins - A Novel • Opie Read

... from seraphic spheres. She inhaled with delight the fragrance wafted from the graceful curls of that brilliant head. She would have liked to touch the soft kid of the delicate gloves. She envied Charles his small hands, his complexion, the freshness and refinement of his features. In short,—if it is possible to sum up the effect this elegant being produced upon an ignorant young girl perpetually employed in darning stockings or in mending her father's clothes, and whose ...
— Eugenie Grandet • Honore de Balzac

... throng is thickest, where the lights are brightest, where all the senses are ministered to with the greatest delicacy and refinement, Lady Dedlock is. From the shining heights she has scaled and taken, she is never absent. Though the belief she of old reposed in herself as one able to reserve whatsoever she would under her mantle ...
— Bleak House • Charles Dickens

... he seemed desirous, by his assiduities and attentions, to show us, that we stood in need of no other favourite or companion. But at the same time he showed no animosity whatever towards his supposed rival. Here was reason and refinement too. Besides the friends whom he meets in my house, Rover also forms attachments of his own, in which he shows a great discrimination. It is not every one who offers him a bone that he will trust as a friend. He has one or two intimate acquaintances ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Vol. 13, Issue 353, January 24, 1829 • Various

... irresistible, and justify all the rapture with which his successors speak of his "gold dew-drops of speech." Johnson misses the point entirely when he finds fault with Dryden for ascribing to Chaucer the first refinement of our numbers, and says that Gower[94] also can show smooth numbers and easy rhymes. The refinement of our numbers means something far more than this. A nation may have versifiers with smooth numbers and easy rhymes, and yet may have no real poetry ...
— Selections from the Prose Works of Matthew Arnold • Matthew Arnold

... was a great orator, a concise orator, serious and yet full of piercing eloquence; he resembled Berryer in his fervor and in the impetus which commands the sympathy of the masses, and was like Thiers in refinement and skill; but he would have been less diffuse, less in difficulties for a conclusion. He had intended to rise rapidly to power without burdening himself first with the doctrines necessary to begin with, for a man in opposition, but an ...
— Z. Marcas • Honore de Balzac

... received admiration, and is familiar with the graceful little arts of social intercourse. In short, she has acquired a high external polish; and that is precisely what she most needed. Evidently, too, there is an increased mental refinement corresponding to the outward manner. She has mellowed, sweetened—whether deepened or not I should hesitate to affirm. But I am quite sure that I find her more charming to talk with, more supple in ...
— David Poindexter's Disappearance and Other Tales • Julian Hawthorne

... that I can have any but the highest motive. If the evil of foreign customs is to be incorporated into American society, if foul freedom of manners is to defile our pure freedom of life, if the robes of our refinement are to be white only when relieved against the dark background revealed by polluted stage of a corrupt metropolis, on you will fall the burden of the consequences. Believe ME, for your weal and mine are one. Your glory is my glory. Your degradation ...
— Gala-days • Gail Hamilton

... stretched out his long legs, someone was sure to tumble over them: "Peter, how stupid you are!" If he opened his mouth to speak he said something laughable, and if to eat, there was something vulgar in his manners which called down a sharp reproof from Bella, who considered herself a model of refinement and good taste. He took all this in unmoved silence, and seldom said a word except to talk to his father on farming matters; but Lilac, looking on from her quiet corner, often felt sorry for him, as she would have done ...
— White Lilac; or the Queen of the May • Amy Walton

... are taken for granted: there is often a bath-room and always a kitchen. The father's occupation may be local, but a good many fathers will go to town; there is generally a family holiday to the sea, or less often to the country. In the house the degree of refinement varies; there are nearly always pictures of a sort, books of a sort, and the children are supplied with toys of a sort. They visit each other's houses, and the observances of social life are kept variously. Often the horizon is very narrow; the mother's interest is very local and timid; the father's ...
— The Child Under Eight • E.R. Murray and Henrietta Brown Smith

... horned moon, which heretofore Upon their shoes the Romans wore, Whose wideness kept their toes from corns, And whence we claim our shoeing-horns, Shows how the art of cobbling bears A near resemblance to the spheres. A scrap of parchment hung by geometry (A great refinement in barometry) Can, like the stars, foretell the weather; And what is parchment else but leather? Which an astrologer might use Either for almanacs or shoes. Thus Partridge by his wit and parts At once did practise both these arts: And as the boding ...
— English Satires • Various

... they had not arrived at that period of affection when there was danger of their fall,—their love had not passed the golden portal where Heaven ceases and Earth begins. Everything for them was the poetry, the vagueness, the refinement,—not the power, the concentration, the mortality,—of desire! The look—the whisper—the brief pressure of the hand, at most, the first kisses of love, rare and few,—these marked the human limits of that sentiment which filled them ...
— Rienzi • Edward Bulwer Lytton

... are all southern in sentiment, and with the exception of those born in Europe were born and raised in the south. Believing the southern to be the highest type of civilization this continent has seen, the young ladies are trained according to the southern ideas of delicacy, refinement, womanhood, religion, and propriety; hence we offer a first-class female college for the south and solicit ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... persons to return thanks for an injury was a refinement in tyranny frequently practised by the worst of the Roman emperors. Thus Seneca informs us, that "Caligula was thanked by those whose children had been put to death, and whose property had been confiscated." (De Tranquil, xiv.) And again;—"The reply of a person ...
— The Germany and the Agricola of Tacitus • Tacitus

... from a distance, people were apt to fancy her affected, and somewhat inclined to be fantastic; but on approaching her, their minds were speedily disabused of this fancy. The purity of her countenance, her air of refinement and thorough modesty, speedily dispelled any suspicious thoughts, and those who had for a moment harboured them would say mentally, "Pardon me, mademoiselle, I mistook." Such, at least, was the mental comment of ...
— Samuel Brohl & Company • Victor Cherbuliez

... in America are free from haughtiness, awkwardness, or formality, but they do not display the elegance and refinement of the higher classes in England or France. As for the common people, they are serious, shrewd, and industrious; but often seem rude and uncourtly to strangers, for they wish to show their independance by an annoying surliness of behaviour. A ...
— The World's Fair • Anonymous

... instinctiveness which characterised Antoine's; he meant to cultivate and gratify them honourably and openly. In his plump person of medium height, in his long pale face, in which the features derived from his father had acquired some of the maternal refinement, one could already detect signs of sly and crafty ambition and insatiable desire, with the hardness of heart and envious hatred of a peasant's son whom his mother's means and nervous temperament had turned into a ...
— The Fortune of the Rougons • Emile Zola

... I produce a horror worthy of myself,' I thought. 'The mist dagger was melodrama to be smiled at. But this—ah, here we have a refinement that reduces death to a minor obscenity. She attacks me now with a weapon worthy my indifference. It is true, my senses writhe less frightenedly. But I, Mallare—yes, Mallare the Supreme One—honor her assault ...
— Fantazius Mallare - A Mysterious Oath • Ben Hecht

... Spain walked out-of-doors and looked reflectively up the Sleepy Cat road. One further refinement in his appeal for Nan's favor suggested itself. She would be hungry, possibly faint in the heat and dust, when she arrived. He returned to McAlpin: "Where can I get a good cup of coffee when the stage ...
— Nan of Music Mountain • Frank H. Spearman

... accustomed to do when about to say anything emphatic, and replied in his most energetic manner: "I have been a great deal in the South as well as in the North, and know both sections equally well, and I tell you, gentlemen, that there is more intelligence, more refinement, more cultivation, more virtue, and more good manners in one New England village than in all the South together." This decision put an end to the discussion. The South-Carolinian retreated in dudgeon, and Gurowski, chuckling, returned to his book or ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 18, No. 109, November, 1866 • Various

... his last interview with Windham, [3] a few days before the fatal operation which sent "that gallant spirit to aspire the skies." [4] Windham,—the first in one department of oratory and talent, whose only fault was his refinement beyond the intellect of half his hearers,—Windham, half his life an active participator in the events of the earth, and one of those who governed nations,—he regretted,—and dwelt much on that regret, that "he had not entirely devoted ...
— The Works of Lord Byron: Letters and Journals, Volume 2. • Lord Byron

... said Marion, panting. "Is their brutalization the price we pay for our refinement?" Then, as she sank back: ...
— The Testing of Diana Mallory • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... Refinement had more power over the soul of Valentine Cresswell than religion. It governed him with a curious ease of supremacy, and held him back without effort from most of the young man's sins. Each age has its ...
— Flames • Robert Smythe Hichens

... to-morrow and always. He longed to go to Zada and help her and let her revile him and scratch him, perhaps, provided only that she would throw her arms about him afterward. He never imagined that a duel of self-control, a mortal combat in refinement, was being fought over him ...
— We Can't Have Everything • Rupert Hughes

... the centre of the room—to right and to left of it are comfortable armchairs. Against the right wall is a long sofa; above it hang a few good, water-colours and engravings; on the piano and the table there are flowers. A general appearance of refinement and comfort pervades the room; no luxury, but evidence everywhere of good taste, and the countless feminine touches that make a room homelike ...
— Five Little Plays • Alfred Sutro

... fencing might soon resolve themselves into a question of mere strength; yet, in the opening of great conflicts, it is well, even when a resort to force is inevitable, to throw on the opposing party the responsibility of violence; and Henry had been led, either by a refinement of policy, or by the plain straightforwardness of his intentions, into a situation where he could expect without alarm ...
— History of England from the Fall of Wolsey to the Death of Elizabeth. Vol. II. • James Anthony Froude

... Cnidus, to be jostled by the gay crowd at the Olympic games. It was indeed a golden age, when all that was beautiful in nature was reverently and assiduously nurtured, and all that was noble and natural in art was magnificently encouraged; an age in which refinement and nobility were not accidents, but necessities; when politics had reached the high grade of an art, and oratory attained a beauty and power beyond which no Pitt, Canning, or Brougham has ever yet aspired; an age when the ...
— Continental Monthly - Volume 1 - Issue 3 • Various

... indeed, untutored in the cold charities of an outside world—I doubt much if they ever saw the sun shine beyond their own native hills. In the summer time the children brought berries to the nearest station to sell, and with the money they bought a few of the necessities of the outside refinement. ...
— Railway Adventures and Anecdotes - extending over more than fifty years • Various

... the fashion of the previous century, plain, but as neat as everything around her—a spotless white apron seeming to bid defiance to the approach of anything that could soil its purity. The countenance of this old woman certainly did not betoken any of the refinement which is the result of education and good company; but it denoted benevolence, a kind nature, and feeling. We were saluted without surprise, and invited in, to ...
— Miles Wallingford - Sequel to "Afloat and Ashore" • James Fenimore Cooper

... appearance only, few would have given Villiers credit for being the man of penetrative and almost classic refinement he really was,—he looked far more athletic than aesthetic. Broad-shouldered and deep-chested, with a round, blunt head firmly set on a full, strong throat, he had, on the whole, a somewhat obstinate and pugilistic air which totally belied his nature. His features, open and ruddy, ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... transported enormous timber from the still virgin forests—timber of the most valuable kind, whether for ornament, for building or for dyeing purposes. Nor was the city more remarkable for its advantageous situation and the importance of its commerce than for the refinement of its society. Unlike the generality of inland towns in South America, where the constitution of society is apt to be rather heterogeneous, Cua was the residence of many of the principal families of the country—gentlemen at the head of wealthy commercial establishments, ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, December 1878 • Various

... depth to which an ordinary house might rise above it. These grounds, it is said, formed the country residence of the Emperor Galba, and he was buried here after his assassination. It is a sad thought that so much natural beauty and long refinement of picturesque culture is thrown away, the villa being uninhabitable during all the most delightful season of the year on account of malaria. There is truly a curse on ...
— Passages From the French and Italian Notebooks, Complete • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... status, however, of these writers has never been recognized by the public, nor have they enjoyed the same degree of honor as scholars of a different description. Their style of composition, moreover, has never reached the same degree of refinement which distinguished the ancient works. This last is a strong reason for our appreciation of true classical works such as that ...
— Japanese Literature - Including Selections from Genji Monogatari and Classical - Poetry and Drama of Japan • Various

... from America at a speed of 105.5 m.p.h.—a considerable improvement on the 78 m.p.h. of the preceding year, which was by no means accounted for by the mere increase in engine power from 100 horse-power to 140 horse-power. This machine was the first in which the refinement of 'stream-lining' the pilot's head, which became a feature of subsequent racing machines, was introduced. This consisted of a circular padded excresence above the cockpit immediately behind the pilot's head, which gradually tapered off into the top surface ...
— A History of Aeronautics • E. Charles Vivian

... guards opened the taps of the reservoirs, and allowed the whole of their contents to run away into the sand. Whether Jemal the Great planned that, or whether it was but a humorous freak on the part of the officials, I cannot say. But as a refinement of cruelty I have, outside the page of Poe's tales, only once come across anything to equal it, and that in a letter from the Times' correspondent at Berne on April 11, 1917. He describes the treatment of English ...
— Crescent and Iron Cross • E. F. Benson

... and instructive research than the natural history of religion. Some sort of religious service has been found to prevail in all ages and nations, from the most rude and barbarous periods of human society, to those of cultivation and refinement. In these periods are to be traced specimens strongly marked with exertions of the feelings, and faculties of men in every situation almost that can be supposed. It is from the contemplation of these exertions that we learn what sort of creature ...
— Thaumaturgia • An Oxonian

... negative, wholly without the embarrassment of one performing an unusual action. Her companion felt the awakening of curiosity. Zealously though she had, to all appearance, endeavoured to conceal the fact, she was without a doubt personable. Her voice and manner lacked nothing of refinement. Yet her attraction to Francis Ledsam, who, although a perfectly normal human being, was no seeker after promiscuous adventures, did not lie in these externals. As a barrister whose success at the criminal bar had been phenomenal, he had attained ...
— The Evil Shepherd • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... the scenes of suffering and tyranny that led up to it and ensued from it, they clapped their hands to their ears, and cried out that he was a shockingly coarse person, and quite too horribly indelicate for refined society. Because, indeed, they cared only about a surface and outside refinement, and not a whit for that which is inward and profound. For beauty of being—they had neither desire nor power of reverence; all their enthusiasm was spent over forms and words and appearances of beauty. In them the senses ...
— Dreams and Dream Stories • Anna (Bonus) Kingsford

... over-reflexion and self-consciousness which checks the dramatic life and turns it into matter of edification or sentiment. The best of them also give many indications to show how near they were to over-elaboration and refinement. ...
— Epic and Romance - Essays on Medieval Literature • W. P. Ker

... world's upward struggle, we search in vain for our kind of a home. The home of the American workman to-day is provided with more comforts and conveniences, has in it more of the elements of culture and refinement, is more eloquent of love and the higher life than was the home of the ruler of a few generations ago. And the chief factors in it all, those which bind all together and give meaning, are the honored place given the wife and mother and, springing from that, love, love of parent for child ...
— On the Firing Line in Education • Adoniram Judson Ladd

... the same. In the autumn, when the quay is piled high with golden melons and flaming tomatoes, the sight is perhaps the most splendid. The strangest of the fish to English eyes are the great cuttle-fish, which are sold in long slices. It strikes one as a refinement of symmetrical irony that the ink which exudes from these fish and stains everything around should be used for indicating ...
— A Wanderer in Venice • E.V. Lucas

... sage, He filled many a pliant page With the philosophic wisdom and refinement of his age, And his letters to his peers Through a life of smiles and tears Make me often quite ...
— Poems • John L. Stoddard

... "he thought it could not be the maid!" On his first surprise at hearing the keys touched in somewhat an airy and masterful way, not dreaming of me, his suspicions had lighted on Jenny. But a grace, snatched from a superior refinement, soon convinced him that some being,—technically perhaps deficient, but higher informed from a principle common to all the fine arts,—had swayed the keys to a mood which Jenny, with all her (less-cultivated) enthusiasm, could never have elicited from them. I mention this ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Volume 2 • Charles Lamb

... after inflating Ripton with this rapturous prospect, "they got her away, and I recovered. It was Mister Adrian's work. What's my father's objection to her? Because of her birth? She's educated; her manners are beautiful—full of refinement—quick and soft! Can they show me one of their ladies like her?—she's the daughter of a naval lieutenant! Because she's a Catholic? What has religion to do with"—he pronounced "Love!" a little modestly—as it were a blush in ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... tradespeople, however well educated, must necessarily be under-bred, and as such unfit to be inmates of OUR dwellings, or guardians of OUR children's minds and persons. WE shall ever prefer to place those about OUR offspring, who have been born and bred with somewhat of the same refinement as OURSELVES.' I was one of those unhappy women who, mercifully for the upper classes, inherit manners and misery in order that the children of these superior creatures may not put an 'r' at the end of 'idea' and may ...
— More Pages from a Journal • Mark Rutherford

... veranda, with rugs and rattan furniture that made of it one large outside room. Tables, on which rested books and magazines, with here and there a vase of flowers fresh cut from the garden, showed that the inmates of the house were people of intelligence and refinement. ...
— The Rushton Boys at Rally Hall - Or, Great Days in School and Out • Spencer Davenport

... flickered across his lips. It was a grim transition, this, from the luxury, the wealth and refinement of New York's most exclusive club, which he had left but half an hour ago! The smile faded, and he passed his hand a little wearily across his eyes. The strain seemed to grow heavier every day—the underworld more prone to suspicion; ...
— The Further Adventures of Jimmie Dale • Frank L. Packard

... 1780, only twenty-five thousand was paid by the following April; his outstanding acceptances amounted to two hundred and thirty-one thousand dollars—the greater part of which was due in two months. A more painful situation for a gentleman of refinement and honor can scarcely be imagined than that of John Jay—living without any salary, living on credit, scarcely recognized by the proud court to which he had been accredited; and yet maintaining his self-respect, persistent ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 6, No 3, September 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... distressed by the dull season, and had witnessed unjust impositions, was Katia Markelov, a young operative on corsets. She was a tiny, grave-looking girl of nineteen, very frail, with smooth black hair, a lovely refinement of manner, and a very sweet smile. Like many other operatives, she wore glasses. Katia was a good manager, and an industrious and clever student, a ...
— Making Both Ends Meet • Sue Ainslie Clark and Edith Wyatt

... denominations who devote themselves to the task of their improvement, we may fondly hope that the remains of the formidable tribes which were once masters of this country will in their transition from the savage state to a condition of refinement and cultivation add another bright trophy to adorn the ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents: Tyler - Section 2 (of 3) of Volume 4: John Tyler • Compiled by James D. Richardson

... state, are constantly within the sight and hearing of the most unobservant person alive. In short, charity must have its romance, as the novelist or playwright must have his. A thief in fustian is a vulgar character, scarcely to be thought of by persons of refinement; but dress him in green velvet, with a high-crowned hat, and change the scene of his operations, from a thickly-peopled city, to a mountain road, and you shall find in him the very soul of poetry and adventure. So it is with the one great cardinal virtue, ...
— The Life And Adventures Of Nicholas Nickleby • Charles Dickens

... happy condition of human affairs; and although mankind have been gradually verging from a state of simplicity to a more social refinement, yet the governments of those primitive times laid open an analogy for licentiousness; and we find, by pursuing the history of man, that slavery was again introduced, and stained the annals of all the ...
— Anti-Slavery Opinions before the Year 1800 - Read before the Cincinnati Literary Club, November 16, 1872 • William Frederick Poole

... however, a few counter-balancing advantages in his early life. With all her weaknesses, his mother was a lady, and order, refinement, and elegance characterized his home. Though not a gentleman at heart, on approaching manhood he habitually maintained the outward bearing that society demands. The report that he was a little fast was more than neutralized ...
— A Knight Of The Nineteenth Century • E. P. Roe

... restaurant was well filled did any one have the audacity to sit at the stranger's table. His elegance and refinement were as a barrier between him and all that was rude and coarse. If he glanced about the place, taking notes in his turn of this and that, it was covertly and quietly and without offence. His eyes passed ...
— IT and Other Stories • Gouverneur Morris

... recently he knew no other, have ever got beyond chopsticks, the use of which was first taught China, while most of them don't even have them yet.) Let us not forget that our ancestors were using their fingers—barbarians that they were—when the Chinese had risen, centuries before, to the refinement of these sticks, for the fork is only about three hundred years old. Shakespeare probably, Spenser certainly, had only a knife at his girdle to carve the meat he ate, the fingers being important auxiliaries. ...
— Round the World • Andrew Carnegie

... it's difficult. I'll confess I'm fond of ease and comfort and refinement. I like to be looked after and waited on; to have somebody to keep unpleasant things away. That's dreadfully weak, isn't it? And because I haven't more courage, I'm sending you back ...
— Ranching for Sylvia • Harold Bindloss

... rooms devoted to social amelioration; to the mental, physical and spiritual redemption of sordid lives. To these rooms men from the universities, impelled by a new conscience, bring their learning and their refinement. In these rooms men from the docks—the flotsam and jetsam of humanity—receive their first ...
— Old Valentines - A Love Story • Munson Aldrich Havens

... 'what'—-you must try to talk as I talk. No one in the world speaks any language faultlessly, but there are certain more or less obvious irregularities of grammar and pronunciation that are particularly distasteful to people of refinement, and which are easy to guard against if one ...
— The Mucker • Edgar Rice Burroughs

... where you will be welcome.' Thinking even a cripple might find favor and fortune in the country, I came over not long since, and sought the city of Boston, it being, as many had told me, the great center of America's learning and refinement. There I gave a lecture or two; but being a stranger, and deformed withal, the reception I met was cold and discouraging. Against such men as Lowell, and Curtis, men born on the soil, and of such goodly person ...
— The Life and Adventures of Maj. Roger Sherman Potter • "Pheleg Van Trusedale"

... years. He is a first-rate man in talent and character,—a strong abolitionist, and a thorough gentleman in his appearance—showing that the active and adventurous habits of his nation are quite consistent with the highest polish and refinement. He is deeply involved in the politics of his country, and, as I said before, is a candidate for the next presidentship. His strong views on the question of slavery will probably be a bar to his success, but unfortunately another hindrance may be that very high ...
— First Impressions of the New World - On Two Travellers from the Old in the Autumn of 1858 • Isabella Strange Trotter

... of the woman's face convinced him that his ordinary loquaciousness would not serve him here. There was a refinement in her aspect quite out of keeping with the locality in which she lived, and he was hesitating how to proceed, when fortune favoured him by driving against his knees a small lad on an ill-directed sled, bringing ...
— The House of the Whispering Pines • Anna Katharine Green

... been branded and tortured publicly in the plaza at La Guayra—with every refinement of cruelty that yet stopped short of permanent injury,—and thence had been sent to Mexico to undergo similar treatment in its cities; after which they were to be returned to La Guayra to undergo the final punishment of burning ...
— Across the Spanish Main - A Tale of the Sea in the Days of Queen Bess • Harry Collingwood

... born it was strange now to peruse, for the first time, the records of a mind whence my own sprang; and most strange, and at once sad and sweet, to find that mind of a truly fine, pure, and elevated order. They were written to papa before they were married. There is a rectitude, a refinement a constancy, a modesty, a sense, a gentleness about them indescribable. I wished that she had lived, and that I had known her. . . . All through this month of February, I have had a crushing time of it. I could not escape from or rise above certain most ...
— The Life of Charlotte Bronte • Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

... an excess of refinement in the idea of disabling the people to continue in office men who had entitled themselves, in their opinion, to approbation and confidence; the advantages of which are at best speculative and equivocal, and are overbalanced by disadvantages far ...
— The Federalist Papers • Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison

... explanation is remarkable. It was because the later dramatists 'understood the conversation of gentlemen much better,' whose wild 'debaucheries and quickness of wit no poet can ever paint as they have done.' In a later essay he explains that the greater refinement was due to the influence of the court. Charles II., familiar with the most brilliant courts of Europe, had roused us from barbarism and rebellion, and taught us to 'mix our solidity' with 'the air ...
— English Literature and Society in the Eighteenth Century • Leslie Stephen

... with myself for allowing this tall, simple-hearted country fellow to puzzle me so much. And yet, was he a simple-hearted country fellow? City bred he certainly was not; but his manner, in spite of his awkwardness, had an indescribable air of refinement. Now and then, too, he dropped a word or a phrase that showed his familiarity with unexpected lines of reading. "The other day," said Curtis, with the slightest elevation of eyebrow, "he had the cheek to correct my Latin for me." In short, ...
— Quite So • Thomas Bailey Aldrich

... when, in nations of some refinement, there was such a reaction against the injustice and degradation to which woman had so long been subjected that she suddenly became an object of sentimental regard among courtly men. Her noble qualities ...
— Daybreak: A Romance of an Old World • James Cowan

... must not, however, imagine that all Russian priests are of the kind above referred to. Many of them are honest, respectable, well-intentioned men, who conscientiously fulfil their humble duties, and strive hard to procure a good education for their children. If they have less learning, culture, and refinement than the Roman Catholic priesthood, they have at the same time infinitely less fanaticism, less spiritual pride, and less intolerance towards the adherents ...
— Russia • Donald Mackenzie Wallace

... escorted to their pinnace with many apologies from Lafitte, who now wrote a letter to Captain Lockyer, which shows him to have been a man of considerable cultivation, and not a mere "rough and tumble" pirate—without education or refinement. He said: ...
— Famous Privateersmen and Adventurers of the Sea • Charles H. L. Johnston

... Newton. He was the calmest and gentlest of human beings, and to his calmness was attributable the fact that he lived till 1858, although when he was twenty the offices refused to insure his life for a year on any terms. Those who knew him best regarded him as a man of singular wisdom and refinement. He lived, till he came to London for the later education of his boys, in a small country house at Claybrook, near Lutterworth, and was proprietor of the 'Northampton Mercury,' one of the oldest papers in England, founded, I believe, by his grandfather. This Claybrook house was the scene of some ...
— The Life of Sir James Fitzjames Stephen, Bart., K.C.S.I. - A Judge of the High Court of Justice • Sir Leslie Stephen

... 'saves the soul' with the relative values of the various good things that soothe or beautify life. For, if there is any value at all—I will not say in health and happiness, but in art, poetry, knowledge, refinement, public esteem, or human affection, and if their claims do clash, as in common opinion they sometimes do, with the demands of absolute sanctity, how is the balance to be struck? Are we to be content with the principle of accepting a little moral wrong ...
— Five Stages of Greek Religion • Gilbert Murray

... 'Virgin and Child' hanging on the plaster wall, the fragments of a rough cradle overturned in a corner, a few coarse china crocks and ornaments and figures chipped and broken and scattered about the mantel, and the bare board floor. Another house had plainly been a home of some refinement. The rooms were large, with lofty ceilings; there were carpets on the floors, although so covered with dirt and dried mud and the dust of fallen plaster that they were hardly discernible as carpets. In one room a large polished table had a broken leg replaced by an up-ended barrel, ...
— Between the Lines • Boyd Cable

... never seemed to be preaching or lecturing, although he had so much of the talk to himself. He was particularly charming when "chaffing" any one, and in high spirits over it. His manner at such times was light-hearted and boyish, and his refinement of nature came out most strongly. So, when he was talking to a lady who pleased and amused him, the combination of raillery and deference in his manner was ...
— The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, Volume I • Francis Darwin

... him infinite credit: yet never were two men more dissimilar as they advanced in life. Gray had no aristocratic birth to boast; and Horace dearly loved birth, refinement, position, all that comprises the cherished term 'aristocracy.' Thomas Gray, more illustrious for the little his fastidious judgment permitted him to give to the then critical world, than many have been in their productions of volumes, was born in Cornhill—his father being a worthy ...
— The Wits and Beaux of Society - Volume 2 • Grace & Philip Wharton

... And by an exquisite refinement in torture the possible father of several of his children not only dictated to the Queen perpetual outbreaks of frantic jealousy against her husband, but moved her to refuse with suspicion any food and drink offered her ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... all her natural refinement, "to be happy in these homes, they must be able to read a pleasant book or to sing a beautiful song, else their lives, spite of all their waterfalls, would be ...
— The Home • Fredrika Bremer

... the highest rank, his manners were entirely free from vulgarity and coarseness: he was uniformly self-possessed, and with the tact and ease of deportment which marked the poet of the heart, and which are falsely supposed to be the result of civilization and refinement only, he readily accommodated himself to the novelties of his new position, and seemed more ...
— Life of Tecumseh, and of His Brother the Prophet - With a Historical Sketch of the Shawanoe Indians • Benjamin Drake

... had occasion to deal with Vendome, and sent the Bishop of Parma to confer with him. The Duc de Vendome was a man who affected roughness and brutality of manners, and made it his pride to set all rules of decency at defiance. Peter the Great, Potemkin, Suwarrow, would have seemed men of ultra-refinement when compared with him. His manner of receiving the bishop was such that the bishop quitted his presence abruptly and without saying a word, and returning to Parma, told his master that no consideration on earth should induce him ...
— A History of the Four Georges, Volume I (of 4) • Justin McCarthy

... no listeners except the bushes and the reeds by the edge of the Charente, let me tell you about my anxiety as to Lucien's present step, dear Eve. After all that I have just said, I hope that you will look on my fears as a refinement of friendship. You and your mother have done all that you could to put him above his social position; but when you stimulated his ambition, did you not unthinkingly condemn him to a hard struggle? How can he maintain himself in the society to ...
— Two Poets - Lost Illusions Part I • Honore de Balzac

... but congratulate Mr. Hirst on his success in producing a poem conceived with so much force and refinement of imagination, and finished with such consummate art, as the present. It is a valuable addition to the permanent poetical ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIII No. 1 July 1848 • Various

... sunshine, apparently an opera-glass. I had never heard that opera-glasses were used for observing birds, but this was evidently what she was doing at this moment, and the proceeding quickened my sense not only of her intellectual refinement, but also of her ...
— The Rise of David Levinsky • Abraham Cahan

... principles upon which the individuals acted, however unconsciously, amid the intercourse of life. Lessons could thus be taught, which could not, perhaps, be communicated with the same effect by any other means. This pleasing agency of education in the school of moral refinement Lady Nairn has exercised with genial tact and great beauty; and, liberally as she bestowed benefactions on her fellow-kind in many other respects, it may be said no gifts conferred could bear in their beneficial effects a comparison ...
— The Modern Scottish Minstrel, Volume VI - The Songs of Scotland of the Past Half Century • Various

... your nature," responded the other, "and I am glad to meet with one of your age, who, having lived among the beauties of Nature, has not allowed them to become commonplace and unworthy of notice. Many in the cities show less refinement." ...
— How Deacon Tubman and Parson Whitney Kept New Year's - And Other Stories • W. H. H. Murray

... ladies of Versailles on the sward of the Swiss village near the Trianon, the other like the march of the maenads with Theroigne de Mericourt. Ramsay adds to the rough tunes and words of the ballads the refinement of the wits who in the "Easy" and "Johnstone" clubs talked over their cups of Prior and Pope, Addison and Gay. Burns inspires them with a fervour that thrills the most wooden of his race. We may clench the contrast by a representative ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 4 - "Bulgaria" to "Calgary" • Various

... themselves and their surroundings. Civilized mankind chooses tints and shades predominantly to live with, that is, for the decoration of his surroundings. However, civilized man and the savage appear to have the same fundamental preference for pure colors and apparently culture and refinement are responsible for their difference in choice of colors to live with. This is an interesting discovery and it has its applications in lighting, especially in spectacular ...
— Artificial Light - Its Influence upon Civilization • M. Luckiesh

... Widow Langford possessed a shrewdness and penetration of character, which we sometimes find in persons of her class, but which was in her case so combined, from long residence in Mr. Hamilton's family, with a delicacy and refinement, that she generally kept her remarks very much more secret than persons in her sphere of life usually do. It was fortunate for our poor Emmeline that it was so, for the widow had chanced to be an unseen witness of Arthur's impassioned farewell. She heard the concluding words of both, ...
— The Mother's Recompense, Volume II. - A Sequel to Home Influence in Two Volumes • Grace Aguilar

... discipline, there is an inward and fundamental cause for the disorder. These people are too susceptible. They are Frenchmen, and Frenchmen of the eighteenth century; brought up in the amenities of the utmost refinement, accustomed to deferential manners, to constant kind attentions and mutual obligations, so thoroughly imbued with the instinct of good breeding that their conversation seems almost insipid to strangers.[2106]—And suddenly they find themselves on the thorny soil of politics, exposed to ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 2 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 1 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... a reception in Jerusalem given by a native lady in her own home, surrounded by every luxury and refinement as these are known in Asia Minor. She received us very graciously, with a distinguished, high-bred air, knowing just what to say and do at the psychological moment. She treated Mrs. Galley-West with the same impartiality that she showed toward some of the aristocratic members of the ...
— A Fantasy of Mediterranean Travel • S. G. Bayne

... is, in fact, an hereditary school of metaphysics) requires men set apart for the purpose, whose leisure tempts them to invention, whose interest prompts them to imposture. A symbolical religion is a proof of a certain refinement in civilization—the refinement of sages in the midst of a subservient people; and it absorbs to itself those meditative and imaginative minds which, did it not exist, would be devoted to philosophy. Now, even allowing ...
— Athens: Its Rise and Fall, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... fond of it. He always brought his book to the table; he liked to eat slowly, to gaze out and digest one or two thoughts at his leisure, as well as the delightful breakfast set before him. He was a man of delicate tastes and much refinement, for with all the New England sturdiness, hardness one might say, there was in many families a strain of what we might term high breeding. His face, with its clear-cut features, indicated this. His hair was rather light, fine, with a few waves in it that gave it a ...
— A Little Girl in Old Salem • Amanda Minnie Douglas

... fall, even through modesty,—of either endeavouring to admire a grandeur with which we have no natural sympathy, or losing the pleasure we might take in the study of familiar things, by considering it a sign of refinement to look for what is of higher ...
— Lectures on Art - Delivered before the University of Oxford in Hilary term, 1870 • John Ruskin

... treated as if it were the victory of one pagan god over another—the final triumph being to him who is the most "gentle" and "beautiful" of all the gods. In the famous argument between the Lady and her Tempter, in Comus, we have an exquisite example of the sweet, grave refinement of virginal taste which shuns grossness as "a false note." The doctrine of Comus—if so airy a thing can be supposed to have a doctrine—is not very different from the doctrine of Marius the Epicurean. One were foolish ...
— Visions and Revisions - A Book of Literary Devotions • John Cowper Powys

... could justify that opposition only on a strong claim to natural liberty. Their very existence depended on the powerful and unremitted assertion of that claim. All Protestantism, even the most cold and passive, is a sort of dissent. But the religion most prevalent in our northern colonies is a refinement on the principle of resistance: it is the dissidence of dissent, and the protestantism of the Protestant religion. This religion, under a variety of denominations agreeing in nothing but in the communion of the spirit of liberty, is predominant in most of the northern provinces, ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. II. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... countries—who, in short, is not better versed in every branch of practical knowledge applicable to the ordinary purposes of life, than the average of the most intelligent classes in Great Britain or France. If we are deficient in the dandyism of dress and the puppyism of manners, which so generally pass for refinement and politeness on the Continent of Europe, there is scarcely a boor among us who would not be hooted out of the lowest society for the indifference, rudeness, and disrespect toward women, which form ...
— The Land of Thor • J. Ross Browne

... entered, a child, into a society "rotten before it was ripe." She was surrounded with a court long demoralized by a succession of drunken and dissolute czarinas, which aped the corruption of Versailles more consummately than its refinement. The age was that of Louis XV, of Lord Sandwich, of Augustus the Strong: in it even a Burke had persuaded himself that "vice lost half its evil by losing all its grossness." The reader of Bayle and Brantome had been introduced to a bizarre sort of morality; her ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, v. 13 • Various

... lady was. "Mrs. Porcher Brewton!" he exclaimed. "Have you never met her socially? Why she—why she is the most intellectual lady in Bee Bayou." "Indeed!" I said. "Why she visits New Orleans, and Charleston, and all the principal centres of refinement, and is welcomed in Washington. She converses freely with our statesmen and is considered a queen of learning. Why she writes po'try, sir, and is strong-minded. But a man wouldn't want to pick her up for a fool, all the samey." "I shouldn't; I don't," said I. "Don't you do it, sir. She's run ...
— The Jimmyjohn Boss and Other Stories • Owen Wister

... last. But this discovery in nowise disconcerted the sturdy lads of Devon, who had long ago learned to regard themselves as invincible, so far as the Spaniards were concerned; so they continued with the utmost calmness to add here and there some refinement of finish to the preparations which had been completed an hour or more ago. Even the ship's cook, whom nobody regarded as a fighting man, must needs add his little quota to the general preparations, the ...
— Two Gallant Sons of Devon - A Tale of the Days of Queen Bess • Harry Collingwood

... at home, Jeff had to admit. Calaxian calm-crystals did what no refinement of Terran therapeutics had been able to manage. They erased the fears of the neurotic and calmed the quiverings of the hypertensive—both in alarming majority in the shattering aftermath of the Fourth War—with no ...
— Traders Risk • Roger Dee

... unites in himself the three greatest characters upon earth; he is a priest, an husbandman, and the father of a family. He is drawn as ready to teach, and ready to obey, as simple in affluence, and majestic in adversity. In this age of opulence and refinement whom can such a character please? Such as are fond of high life, will turn with disdain from the simplicity of his country fire-side. Such as mistake ribaldry for humour, will find no wit in his harmless conversation; and such as have been taught to deride religion, will laugh at one whose chief ...
— The Vicar of Wakefield • Oliver Goldsmith

... me a poacher," answered the man; and his voice was something of a surprise coming from such a scarecrow; it had that hard fastidiousness to be found in those who have made a fight for their own refinement among rough surroundings. "I consider I have a perfect right to shoot game in this place. But I am well aware that people of your sort take me for a thief, and I suppose you will try to land me ...
— The Man Who Knew Too Much • G.K. Chesterton

... around the room as the four men who had been playing with the girl got up and prepared to leave. The place was spotless. Oh, the furnishings weren't costly, but they were chosen with that sense of fitness, of refinement of color and decor that is curiously Psi. I suppose that's one of the little things that annoys Normals so much. Stigma powers seem to go beyond telepathy, clairvoyance and telekinesis—they extend in some hard to define way into the aesthetic. ...
— Modus Vivendi • Gordon Randall Garrett

... sensitive, noticed that her voice was pleasant to listen to, and her speech marked by a simple, unaffected refinement. He lingered because he was interested in her work. He found a kind of fascination in watching her as she took a moist red flower-pot from one end of the table, threw in a handful or two of earth from the heap at the other end, then ...
— The Side Of The Angels - A Novel • Basil King

... credit equal, if not superior, to that of the oldest, richest and most powerful nations. It has, by a policy of fostering and protecting our home industries, so diversified our productions that every article of necessity, luxury, art or refinement can be made by American labor, and the food and fruits of a temperate climate, and cotton, wool and all the textile fibres, can be raised on the ...
— Recollections of Forty Years in the House, Senate and Cabinet - An Autobiography. • John Sherman

... designs for piano cases, the element of economy, though recognized, played but a small part in the decision of the judges. The qualities which made the premiated designs superior to others, were those of refinement, beauty of line, and of ...
— The Brochure Series of Architectural Illustration - Vol 1, No. 9 1895 • Various

... She loves you so much she would endure even this to become your comrade as well as wife, to fit herself that she may take her place beside you in your world, serene and assured, to become the woman you can revere for her intellect and refinement. ...
— Peregrine's Progress • Jeffery Farnol

... of respectable gravity, however, when he presented himself before Mademoiselle Euphrosyne Delande, at her Institute, when the bells clanged ten in the morning. Major Hawke at once impressed the sleek door-opener, Francois, by the ultra refinement of his demeanor, and the suave elegance of his French. "Evidently the one necessary Adam in this Garden of undeveloped young Peris," thought Hawke, as he gazed around the cheerless room, with its globes, busts of departed sages, topographical maps, and framed samples of the ...
— A Fascinating Traitor • Richard Henry Savage

... sincerity by five years' adherence to their new form of religion before they could be regarded as having washed off the defilement of their old heresy sufficiently to be thought worthy to wear a gown in the Four Courts. No Roman Catholic might keep a school; while a strange refinement of intolerance had added a statute prohibiting parents from sending their children to Roman Catholic Schools ...
— The Constitutional History of England From 1760 to 1860 • Charles Duke Yonge

... No. —— Gramercy Park, was one of those dignified, old-fashioned residences that still remain in New York to remind our vulgar, ostentatious nouveaux riches of the days when culture and refinement counted for something more than mere wealth. Overlooking the railed-in square with its green lawns, pretty winding paths and well-dressed children romping at play, it had a high stoop which opened into a wide hall, decorated with obsolete weapons and trophies of the hunt. On ...
— The Mask - A Story of Love and Adventure • Arthur Hornblow

... drollery, her ringing laugh, her arch sayings with some blame, but more admiration. After all, what had he a right to expect in this remote corner of the land, cut off by twenty leagues of bog and mountain from modern refinement, culture, thought, in this old tribal house, the last refuge of a proscribed faith and a hated race? Surely, no more than he found—nay, not a tithe of that he found. For, listening with a kindlier heart—even he, hurt by her neglect, ...
— The Wild Geese • Stanley John Weyman

... out of the mountain heights with the elemental vigor of wind and sun and soil about him like an aura. A man of great natural refinement, he had grown strong and simple and masterful in his close contact with Nature. The clay that might have brutalized another nature had made ...
— The Spirit of Sweetwater • Hamlin Garland

... uncommonly handsome man. While not the equal of Gall in magnificence and imposing stature, he was physically perfect, an Apollo in symmetry. Furthermore he was a true type of Indian refinement and grace. He was modest and courteous as Chief Joseph; the difference is that he was a born warrior, while Joseph was not. However, he was a gentle warrior, a true brave, who stood for the highest ideal of the Sioux. Notwithstanding ...
— Indian Heroes and Great Chieftains • [AKA Ohiyesa], Charles A. Eastman



Words linked to "Refinement" :   signification, subtlety, import, refine, excellence, betterment, elaboration, rectification, improvement, processing, flawlessness, refining, nuance, purification, meaning, significance, ne plus ultra, advance, perfection



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