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Set-to   /sɛt-tu/   Listen
Set-to

noun
1.
A brief but vigorous fight.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Set-to" Quotes from Famous Books



... matter, Hardy? Look's if you'd had a shock! Been havin' a set-to with old Forbes, I'll bet ...
— For Gold or Soul? - The Story of a Great Department Store • Lurana W. Sheldon

... to have a look at the fellow. Used to like to see a good honest set-to myself occasionally, before I became—ahem!—governor!" And rising with alacrity, Sir Charles assisted his lady ...
— Half A Chance • Frederic S. Isham

... set-to one day in blowing iridescent soap bubbles from a mixture of soap and glycerine. Some of the bubbles were of about fifteen inches diameter. By carefully covering them with a bell glass, we kept them for about thirty-six hours, while they went through their changes ...
— James Nasmyth's Autobiography • James Nasmyth

... perhaps the most disgraceful exhibition ever made by any President; but, as no evil is entirely unmixed, good has come of this, as from many others. Ambitious, unscrupulous, energetic, indefatigable, voluble, and plausible,—a political gladiator, ready for a "set-to" in any crowd,—he is beaten in his own chosen field, and stands to-day before the country as a convicted usurper, a political criminal, guilty of a bold and persistent attempt to possess himself of the legislative powers solemnly secured to Congress by the Constitution. No vindication could be ...
— The Martin Luther King, Jr. Day, 1995, Memorial Issue • Various

... Skeptic, in tennis flannels, was lounging on the porch as she came up the steps, and scanned her critically over the racquet he still held, after a brisk set-to with the Gay Lady, who is one of my other guests. (We call her the Gay Lady because of her flower-bright face, her trick of smiling when other people frown, and because of a certain soft sparkle and glow ...
— A Court of Inquiry • Grace S. Richmond

... journey. But, as the world becomes more civilized and wiser, the more difficult it is to come upon an adventure the end of which you cannot foresee. In the Elizabethan days you could assault the watch, wring knockers from doors and have a jolly set-to with the blades in any convenient angle of a wall and 'get away with it.' Nowadays, if you speak disrespectfully to a policeman, all that is left to the most romantic fancy is to conjecture in what particular police station he will ...
— Strictly Business • O. Henry

... Plain Smith. "One time when I was school-teaching I had a set-to with a school committee of farmers about teaching the kids a little botany. They said the three R's were enough. I won out, but I swore I'd stand up for any teacher that tried to be honest the way he seen it. I don't agree ...
— The Trail of the Hawk - A Comedy of the Seriousness of Life • Sinclair Lewis

... instantly admitted), and, after behaving in a very improper manner, he placed himself in a boxing attitude, and commanded me to defend myself, or he should floor me. I had no inclination to have a set-to with a perfect stranger, and was about to request his immediate departure, when he struck me a smart blow upon the chin, and then affected to apologise for the insult, or rather assault, by saying, that it arose entirely from the want of my keeping a proper guard. I, however, instantly spoiled ...
— Memoirs of Henry Hunt, Esq. Volume 3 • Henry Hunt

... and that child had a grand set-to in the store. Cecilia wanted a bright-red silk dress to wear under her lace one; but E. E. liked blue best, and ordered it. Then Cecilia declared she didn't want any dress at all, broke her new parasol striking it against the counter, and ended off by flinging herself down on a stool and drumming ...
— Phemie Frost's Experiences • Ann S. Stephens

... I've been up town and had a set-to with old Baucum and the rest of them. Pulled up fifty winner at poker and jumped. Devilish glad to see you; miss you every minute of the time I'm away. Let's go over there and sit ...
— An Arkansas Planter • Opie Percival Read

... she said, "What a constitutional liar that Stiles must be, and as for the Professor, I would like to have a set-to with him myself." ...
— Quincy Adams Sawyer and Mason's Corner Folks - A Picture of New England Home Life • Charles Felton Pidgin

... schoolfellows, who, whenever they met them, would always stop to have a talk about the distant country to which they were going. The boys, however, had now but little time for talking; for upon the week after their father had first told them of his intention, they had set-to regularly at the work he had laid down for them. They rose every morning at five, had a slice of bread and a cup of milk, and were off to the gardener's, where they worked hard until half-past eight. Mr. Hardy had requested that they should ...
— On the Pampas • G. A. Henty

... wrath, and that is just what we do not want. We want to let it out. We have worked ourselves up into a state of exhilarating fury, and then just as we are anticipating the enjoyment of a vigorous set-to, they spoil all our plans ...
— Idle Thoughts of an Idle Fellow • Jerome K. Jerome

... their soup; certainly not a very formidable band in a hand-to-hand encounter, though full of fire and animation. "There are four of us, and only seventeen of them, such as they are. I rather think we could handle 'em all, in a regular set-to, with fists. There's Neb, he's as strong as a jackass; Diogenes is another Hercules; and neither you nor I am a kitten. I consider you as a match, in a serious scuffle, for the best four ...
— Miles Wallingford - Sequel to "Afloat and Ashore" • James Fenimore Cooper

... shirt and stood in his trousers. When I saw him, I no longer wondered why I had failed to overcome him in our first set-to. The fellow was a perfect mass of muscle, and while I gazed at his strong frame I wondered at the power in Trunnell's arms, which held us so tight and saved me that first ...
— Mr. Trunnell • T. Jenkins Hains

... the last twenty years, By the lively young Peers, Who, doffing their coronets, collars, and ermine, treat Boxers to "Max," at the One Tun in Jermyn Street; —I say, could I borrow these Gentlemen's Muses, More skill'd than my meek one in "fibbings" and "bruises," I'd describe now to you As "prime a Set-to," And "regular turn-up," as ever you knew; Not inferior in "bottom" to aught you have read of Since Cribb, years ago, half knock'd Molyneux's head off. But my dainty Urania says, "Such things are shocking!" Lace mittens ...
— The Humourous Poetry of the English Language • James Parton

... overturn the boat under them, and that it would be better to stop just before they drove her wild than just after. As he was the only one among them who understood the sources of her fortune,—and they knew it,—he was able, when it came to a general set-to, to proclaim sanctuary for the goose that ...
— Youth and the Bright Medusa • Willa Cather

... They're not so big and strong; but then they're not so easily frightened. They're always ready for a set-to, and 'cepting where there's snakes in the way, they never think of danger, or being hurt. And when they are hurt, the more they feel it, the more they go, ...
— Jack at Sea - All Work and no Play made him a Dull Boy • George Manville Fenn

... at all for his reception. His amazement grows when St. Peter at length appears and makes it plain that the gate is not going to be opened, and that there is no room in heaven for Julius with his record of wars and other unchristian deeds; whereupon there is a fine set-to, and each party receives ...
— The Age of Erasmus - Lectures Delivered in the Universities of Oxford and London • P. S. Allen

... listened. Then they deliberated whether Bernard Shaw ought to go into Parliament. And that brought them to vegetarianism and teetotalism, and the young man in the orange tie and Mrs. Goopes had a great set-to about the sincerity of Chesterton and Belloc that was ended by Goopes showing signs of resuming ...
— Ann Veronica • H. G. Wells

... is what I call a reg'lar set-to. Fire away, my lads," cried Captain Oughton, rubbing his hands. "A proper rally this. ...
— Newton Forster - The Merchant Service • Captain Frederick Marryat

... largest eye, and the sweetest whistle, and he was lord over all the blackbirds. In two minutes up came another one from out of the bramble bushes at the corner, and away they went chattering at each other. Presently the starlings on the chimney began to quarrel, and had a terrible set-to. Then a wren came by, and though he was so small, his boast was worse than the blackbird's, for he said he was the sharpest and the cleverest of all the birds, and knew more ...
— Wood Magic - A Fable • Richard Jefferies

... if I felt any thing of the last, I am sure I did him injustice; and (I hope) myself. Be it as it may, I thought it better just to exchange a shot now and then,—sometimes it was a red-hot shot too on both sides,—as we passed and repassed, in the current of conversation, than come to a regular set-to, yard-arm to yard-arm. From whatever cause, he gave me abundant opportunity of recurring to the subject, for he was perpetually, and I believe unconsciously, leading the conversation towards it; not, I think, from ...
— The Eclipse of Faith - Or, A Visit To A Religious Sceptic • Henry Rogers

... Father of his Country led the van of as sorry a band of patriots as not often comes within one's experience to see. General Marion was playing a dummy game of poker with General Lafayette; Governor Morris was having a set-to with Nathan Lane, and James Madison was executing a Dutch polka with Madam Roland on one arm and Luicretia Borgia on the other. The next moment the advancing ...
— A Unique Story of a Marvellous Career. Life of Hon. Phineas T. • Joel Benton

... Tuesday.—Regular set-to of Irish Members on Prince ARTHUR. MADDEN gallantly threw himself across body of his chief, but got such fearful pummelling retired into silence for rest of sitting. What made it worse for ARTHUR was Chairman's ruling; ...
— Punch, Vol. 99., July 26, 1890. • Various

... with a mad humorous look in his eyes, is soon in the thickest of the crowd of rustic revellers. He jests, gambols, dances, soon to quarrel and fight. He roughly handles a brawny waggoner, a practised boxer, in a regular scientific set-to; gives his defeated antagonist half a guinea, rearranges his toilet, and retires with his friends amidst the cheers of the crowd. It is quite a Tom-and-Jerry scene. Gentlemen delighted to fight coal-heavers in those days. Somehow we always hear of the gentlemen being ...
— Art in England - Notes and Studies • Dutton Cook



Words linked to "Set-to" :   fight, combat, fighting, scrap



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