Free Translator Free Translator
Translators Dictionaries Courses Other
Home
English Dictionary      examples: 'day', 'get rid of', 'New York Bay'




Shifty   /ʃˈɪfti/   Listen
Shifty

adjective
1.
Characterized by insincerity or deceit; evasive.  Synonym: devious.  "Shifty eyes"
2.
Changing position or direction.  Synonym: shifting.  "Their nervous shifting glances" , "Shifty winds"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








Advanced search
     Find words:
Starting with
Ending with
Containing
Matching a pattern  

Synonyms
Antonyms
Quotes
Words linked to  

only single words



Share |





"Shifty" Quotes from Famous Books



... to himself that this man with his shifty looks and suspicious appearance would be about the last man he ...
— A Cousin's Conspiracy - A Boy's Struggle for an Inheritance • Horatio Alger

... was a smooth-tongued, tall, lean individual with shifty eyes, and a flow of talk of the coffeeshop variety. At the end of his first sentence any fool would have known that he had been put up to quiz Abdul Ali, in order that Abdul Ali might have an excuse to justify himself. He attacked ...
— Jimgrim and Allah's Peace • Talbot Mundy

... Lord Rotherwood and Lady Merrifield seats near the judge, where Miss Mohun was already installed. Alfred Flinders was already at the bar, and for the first time Lady Merrifield saw his somewhat handsome but shifty-looking face and red beard, as the counsel for the prosecution was giving a detailed account of his embarrassed finances, and of his having obtained from the inexperienced kindness of a young lady, a mere child in age, who called ...
— The Two Sides of the Shield • Charlotte M. Yonge

... you had come to spend the night in the lonely castle of a perfect stranger with a shifty eye and a rogues' gallery smile, and on retiring to your room had found the door kick-proof and the window barred, and if, immediately after your discovery of these phenomena, a white-faced young lady had plunged in upon you and urged ...
— The Man Upstairs and Other Stories • P. G. Wodehouse

... postpone treatment until some later date. I heard nothing more from him for almost three years, when he walked in one day, looking like a shadow of his former self. There were dark rings around his eyes, his gaze was shifty and I could hardly believe that this was the young fellow who had seen me three years ago. Nevertheless it was the same man, with a story that pointed out the danger of postponement. His trouble had become steadily worse, he said, until it had ruined his control ...
— Stammering, Its Cause and Cure • Benjamin Nathaniel Bogue

... next door in force, a man, two women, and a girl, and brought a pair of lanterns to examine the wayfarer. The man was not ill-looking, but had a shifty smile. He leaned against the doorpost, and heard me state my case. All I asked was a ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 1 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... position with a house he generally gets a breathing-space while the old men spar around taking his measure and seeing if he sizes up to his job. They give him the benefit of the doubt, and if he shows up strong and shifty on his feet they're apt to let him alone. But there isn't any doubt in your case; everybody's got you sized up, or thinks he has, and those who've been over you will find it hard to accept you as an equal, and those who've been your equals will be slow to regard you as ...
— Old Gorgon Graham - More Letters from a Self-Made Merchant to His Son • George Horace Lorimer

... and imposing, with an effulgent complexion and a prosperous presence. He wore a double-jeweled ring on his apoplectic finger, and a scarab scarf-pin. His eyes were keen and shifty; his teeth had acquired the habit of clutching his fat black cigar viciously while he snarled his rather loose lips about them in conversation. Uncle Ramsay never looked one in the face when he was talking. He looked off into space, where he appeared to have the topic under ...
— The Witness • Grace Livingston Hill Lutz

... garments like his, in spreading folds of awe-inspiring black; I wrapped myself in his immaterial cloak, his dignity and goodness. I faced Rufus Blight and he quailed before a presence so imposing, and when I spoke in a voice vibrating truth my eloquence smothered his feeble, shifty protests. Always I asserted my right to Penelope and led her from her prison. And always, it seemed, with that victory I cast off my Pound-like sanctity and became as other men. With it the great task of my ministry ...
— David Malcolm • Nelson Lloyd

... upshot of all this petty quarrelling and intemperate speech, she was practically excluded (like a lightkeeper on his tower) from the comforts of human association; except with her own indoor drudge, who, being but a lassie and entirely at her mercy, must submit to the shifty weather of "the mistress's" moods without complaint, and be willing to take buffets or caresses according to the temper of the hour. To Kirstie, thus situate and in the Indian summer of her heart, which was slow to submit to age, the gods sent this equivocal ...
— Weir of Hermiston • Robert Louis Stevenson

... uncommonly pasty complexion. A little forked beard, flecked with grey, lengthened his face, which was surmounted by a bald, pallid forehead, beneath which gleamed a pair of small, prominent, restless, shifty eyes. ...
— The Eight Strokes of the Clock • Maurice Leblanc

... other side of her face and remove two false teeth from her mouth, actions which completed the transformation from that of a comely, interesting-looking, youngish woman to that of an elderly, extremely commonplace person with foxy, shifty eyes. ...
— Sparrows - The Story of an Unprotected Girl • Horace W. C. Newte

... right back at him with an upper cut: 'Do ye live on th' Lake Shore dhrive?' If he doesn't, ye have him in th' nine hole. Ye needn't play with him anny more. But, if ye do play with him, he has to spot three balls. If he's a good man an' shifty on his feet, he'll counter be askin' ye where ye spend th' summer. Now ye can't tell him that ye spent th' summer with wan hook on th' free lunch an' another on th' ticker tape, an' so ye go back three. That needn't discourage ye at all, at all. Here's yer chance to mix ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume VIII (of X) • Various

... read every scrap of print within reach, and now lies on his side, with his face to the wall and one arm thrown up over his head; the jumper is twisted back, and leaves his skin bare from hip to arm-pit. His lower face is brutal, his eyes small and shifty, and ugly straight lines run across his low forehead. He says very little, but scowls most of the time—poor devil. He might be, or at least seem, a totally different man under more favourable conditions. He is probably ...
— While the Billy Boils • Henry Lawson

... girl or, at any rate, have made considerably greater advances to her than I did, if I had known earlier that she was going away so soon. Perhaps Leonora was right; perhaps Roman Catholics, with their queer, shifty ways, are always right. They are dealing with the queer, shifty thing that is human nature. For it is quite possible that, if I had known Nancy was going away so soon, I should have tried making love ...
— The Good Soldier • Ford Madox Ford

... Greece, Bulgaria, Rumania, Servia, and the rest, for it would never do to let Fox Ferdinand awake from his hypnotic sleep of a sort of Czardom over the Balkans, or cease to dangle dreams, that included even Constantinople before the shifty eye of King Constantine So, before Turkey was spread the prospect of appropriating Russian and Persian spoils: Prussia had already given the lost Turkish kingdoms in Europe elsewhere, but would there not be a dismembered ...
— Crescent and Iron Cross • E. F. Benson

... built fellow, who seemed, from his attire, to follow the profession of a sailor. Tom Frost was sobbing bitterly. One of Robert Ashford's hands was bandaged up. As he was placed in the dock he cast furtive glances round with his shifty eyes, and as they fell upon Cyril an expression of deadly hate came over his face. The men of the watch who had captured them first gave their evidence as to finding them in the act of robbery, and ...
— When London Burned • G. A. Henty

... like those he confronted, but they were as shifty as the maiden's were steady, and whilst the blue of hers deepened with anger, his assumed a greenish tint that was both uncomely and cruel. For a moment he stared into the azure deeps before him, trying to ...
— Sea-Dogs All! - A Tale of Forest and Sea • Tom Bevan

... the anchored vessel. By and by the parade began, led by Captain Stevenson. It was a straggling military formation that toiled up-hill through the sand toward Portsmouth Square. These men were from the byways and hedges of life. Some of them had shifty eyes and some bold, predatory glances which forebode nothing good for San Francisco's peace. Adventurers for the most part, lured to this new land, some by the wander spirit, others by a wish to ...
— Port O' Gold • Louis John Stellman

... he gathered up awkwardly, with a curious over-motion of his broad shoulders, as if he would conceal the action, various articles in his path. When he opened the door into the bedroom he crammed them behind it with a quick, shifty motion. ...
— Jerome, A Poor Man - A Novel • Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

... horrible little best to suggest that honest old Quackett, who had just left England for the Cape, was the real scandalmonger. That struck me as mean, even for Bailey. I've still the odd vivid impression of his fluting voice, excusing the inexcusable, his big, shifty face evading me, his perspiration-beaded forehead, the shrugging shoulders, and the would-be exculpatory gestures—Houndsditch gestures—of ...
— The New Machiavelli • Herbert George Wells

... trees and the ewes which wandered among them with their lambs, he who, after all his work, was but a failure. With a sigh he turned away to fetch his cap and go out walking—there was a tenant whom he must see, a shifty, new-fangled kind of man who was always clamouring for fresh buildings and reductions in his rent. How was he to pay for more buildings? He must put him off, ...
— The Yellow God - An Idol of Africa • H. Rider Haggard

... those who were present at the dispersion of the household goods and gods of that man who so hated the vulgar crowd. Gazing through the open windows they could see the tall trees waving their heads in a sorrowful sort of way in the summer breeze, throwing their shifty shadows over the neglected grass-grown paths, once the haunt of the stately peacocks, whose medieval beauty had such a strange fascination for Rossetti, and whose feathers are now the accepted favors of his apostles and admirers. And so ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Vol. 13 - Little Journeys to the Homes of Great Lovers • Elbert Hubbard

... veteran, the Prince Albert dated back about four seasons, but the gray gaiters were down to the minute. Being an easy talker, he might have been a book agent or a green goods distributor. But somehow his eyes didn't seem shifty enough for a crook, and no con. man would have lasted long wearing the kind of hair that he did. It was a sort of lemon yellow, and he had a lip decoration about two shades lighter, taggin' him as plain as an "inspected" label on ...
— Shorty McCabe • Sewell Ford

... able to observe the results at close quarters. They'll surprise you. Now we are going to begin. Is your horse all right? He looks shifty, and the guns make a devil of ...
— Children of the Mist • Eden Phillpotts

... Wild-Justice, swiftly fashion itself, and take seat round a table, with the Prison-Registers spread before it;—Stanislas Maillard, Bastille-hero, famed Leader of the Menads, presiding. O Stanislas, one hoped to meet thee elsewhere than here; thou shifty Riding-Usher, with an inkling of Law! This work also thou hadst to do; and then—to depart for ever from our eyes. At La Force, at the Chatelet, the Conciergerie, the like Court forms itself, with the like accompaniments: ...
— The French Revolution • Thomas Carlyle

... There was a shifty light in Einstein's eyes as he mumbled, "I can tell you something else, if you'll do the right thing." Braun searched the young villain's face. ...
— The Midnight Passenger • Richard Henry Savage

... deemed itself free from the taint of falsehood. There may have been an injurious admixture of races on the maternal side, perhaps; albeit his mother personally was good and loyal. However this was, Brian Walford had, even in trifles, shown himself evasive and shifty. ...
— The Golden Calf • M. E. Braddon

... leaden complexion, seemed as if he might be blown away by a strong puff of wind. His skinny arms and legs hung on to his body like the claws of a spider, his fair hair inclined to red, his white skin appeared nearly bloodless, and the consciousness of weakness made him timid, and gave a shifty, uneasy look to his eyes. His whole expression was uncertain, and looking only at his face it was difficult at first sight to decide to which sex he belonged. This confusion of two natures, this indefinable mixture ...
— Celebrated Crimes, Complete • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... we're on the same range, Dan. What I say goes." The eyes of Rutherford bored into the cruel little shifty ones of the bad man. "Take yore choice, Dan. It's quit yore deviltry or leave this ...
— The Sheriff's Son • William MacLeod Raine

... opened his principality again to the encroachment of foes on all sides, and removed one danger from Powys. Powys, however, was being steadily squeezed by the pressure of Gwynedd on one side, and the growing power of Mortimer on the other, and its princes resorted to a shifty diplomacy and a general adherence—open or secret as circumstances dictated—to the English Crown, till they sank at length into the position of petty feudatories ...
— Mediaeval Wales - Chiefly in the Twelfth and Thirteenth Centuries: Six Popular Lectures • A. G. Little

... old-cast-Pair-of-black-Plush-Breeches, which John, our Parish-Clerk, about ten Years ago, it seems, had made a Promise of to one Trim, who is our Sexton and Dog-Whipper.—To this you write me Word, that you have had more than either one or two Occasions to know a good deal of the shifty Behaviour of this said Master Trim,— and that you are astonished, nor can you for your Soul conceive, how so worthless a Fellow, and so worthless a Thing into the Bargain, could become the Occasion of such a Racket as ...
— A Political Romance • Laurence Sterne

... would go out of his way to make them look bad in the eyes of the other enlisted men. A large crowd had gathered in the hammock-hung crew quarters of the Glory of the Galaxy as Boone went on in his deep, booming voice: "So I asked the skipper of the watch, I did. He got shifty-eyed, like they always do. You know. He wasn't talking, but sure as my ...
— A Place in the Sun • C.H. Thames

... some hidden task. Men they were, yet hardly men they seemed, but rather unknown denizens of rock, or wave, or underworld; now red-bodied against the gleam, now ethereally black as are shadows, and whimsical and shifty, yet always full of meaning that could not be divined. They bent, they crouched. They seemed to die down like a wave that is, then is not. Then rising they towered, lifting brawny arms towards the stars. Silence seemed to flow from them, to exude from their labors. And in the swiftness ...
— A Spirit in Prison • Robert Hichens

... letters, but they are apt to be fatal to politicians. Adams had no reason to care whether his standards were popular or not, and no one else cared more than he; but Roosevelt and Lodge were playing a game in which they were always liable to find the shifty sands of American opinion yield suddenly under their feet. With this game an elderly friend had long before carried acquaintance as far as he wished. There was nothing in it for him but the amusement of the pugilist or acrobat. The larger study was lost in the division of ...
— The Education of Henry Adams • Henry Adams

... himself compelled to share their applause with a younger rival without experiencing a pang. So far Pompey had borne the trial well. He was on the whole, notwithstanding the Egyptian scandal, honorable and constitutionally disinterested. He was immeasurably superior to the fanatic Cato, to the shifty Cicero, or the proud and worthless leaders of the senatorial oligarchy. Had the circumstances remained unchanged, the severity of the situation might have been overcome. But two misfortunes coming near upon one another broke the ties of family connection, and by destroying ...
— Caesar: A Sketch • James Anthony Froude

... squat figure of a man, shifty-eyed, with hard mouth and a nervous, restless air, came down a long hallway, smoking a cigarette. His eyes rested with no uncertain ...
— Judith of Blue Lake Ranch • Jackson Gregory

... me be pictured as reposing in fancied security from all evil predictions while I awaited the return of the Honourable George. I was only too certain he would come suffering from an acute acid dyspepsia, for I had seen lobster in his shifty eyes as he left me; but beyond this I apprehended nothing poignant, and I gave myself up to meditating profoundly ...
— Ruggles of Red Gap • Harry Leon Wilson

... new year saw no improvement in German-American relations. Germany and Austria continued to violate the pledge given by Bernstorff after the sinking of the Arabic—if that shifty statement could be regarded as a "pledge." On November 7, 1915, the Austrians sank the Ancona, in the Mediterranean, drowning American citizens under conditions of particular atrocity, and submarine attacks on merchant ships, without the "warning" or attempt to save passengers ...
— The Life and Letters of Walter H. Page, Volume II • Burton J. Hendrick

... the romance of Pantagruel,—almost more than Pantagruel himself. It would be unpardonable to dismiss Rabelais without first making our readers know Panurge by, at least, a few traits of his character and conduct. Panurge was a shifty but unscrupulous adventurer, whom Pantagruel, pious prince as he was, coming upon him by chance, took and kept under his patronage. Panurge was an arch-imp of mischief,—mischief indulged in the form of obscene ...
— Classic French Course in English • William Cleaver Wilkinson

... warm garments; or, perhaps, if Anna had not been so afraid of her mother, but had appealed to her candidly and without fear, she might have obtained relief. This, unfortunately, was not Anna's way, for Anna's ways were still as crooked and shifty as her glances. She would think out this plan and that plan to avoid the only one that was straightforward and right, though it must be said for her that she did try to be more open and honourable—at ...
— Kitty Trenire • Mabel Quiller-Couch

... that, I wish we had a few more of them. I like a well-conducted regiment, but these pasty-faced, shifty-eyed, mealy-mouthed young slouchers from the Depot worry me sometimes with their offensive virtue. They don't seem to have backbone enough to do anything but play cards and prowl round the married ...
— Soldier Stories • Rudyard Kipling

... imparting all that he knew. Similarly the gypsies, who alone travel the Race-plain in these days, and mostly by night, were believed to know him well; but they, too, kept their lore within the limits of their own shifty realm. ...
— Rest Harrow - A Comedy of Resolution • Maurice Hewlett

... think. It was past eleven. The housekeeper had gone to spend the night with an ailing sister, and a furtive glance at Brother Burge's small shifty eyes and fat unwholesome face was sufficient to deter him from leaving him alone with his property, while he went to ask the police to give an eye to his house for the night. Besides, it was more than probable that Mr. Burge would decline ...
— Captains All and Others • W.W. Jacobs

... his face furrowed with ill-temper. He kept his shifty eyes, which seldom met those of the person he addressed, on the floor; and this accentuated the awkward stooping carriage which was natural to him. There were seven or eight dogs of exceeding smallness in the ...
— A Gentleman of France • Stanley Weyman

... had seen Brannan. Brannan, the pure- minded, right-minded, shifty man of tact, man of brain, man of heart, and man of word, who held New Altona in the hollow of his hand. Brannan had made no money. Not he, nor ever will. But Brannan could do much what he pleased in this ...
— The Brick Moon, et. al. • Edward Everett Hale

... the superstructure; the fluctuation had been all in the foundations. The great temple of Chatham and Warren Hastings was reared in its origins on things as unstable as water and as fugitive as foam. It is only a fancy, of course, to connect the unstable element with something restless and even shifty in the lords of the sea. But there was certainly in the genesis, if not in the later generations of our mercantile aristocracy, a thing only too mercantile; something which had also been urged against a yet older example of ...
— A Short History of England • G. K. Chesterton

... cataclysmic problems depending upon its outcome.... Well, it was odd to remember that petty political conflict as I stood there in the trenches under the gigantic shadow of world-wide disaster—to find myself there, talking with this sallow, wiry, shifty ward leader—this corrupt little local tyrant whom I had opposed in the 50th Ward—this ex-lightweight bruiser, ex-gunman—this dirty little political procurer who had been and was everything brutal, ...
— Barbarians • Robert W. Chambers

... Scotch terrier at the sight of his shifty eyes in the glade between his tangled hair and beard. For one ignoble moment I felt ashamed of having been introduced as his friend in the presence of so much beauty in distress. But evidently Tripp meant to conduct the ceremonies, whatever they might be. I thought I detected in his actions and ...
— Options • O. Henry

... he called, and a young man of about his own age entered. Without being in the least ill-looking, there was something repellent about the new comer. His eyes were shifty and too close together to be trustworthy. Otherwise no fault could ...
— 'Way Down East - A Romance of New England Life • Joseph R. Grismer

... was at a loss which way to steer his tongue, the wind being so shifty. At last he observed a little haughtily that "he never made Mr. Dodd of so much. importance as all this. He owned he had quizzed him, but it was not his intention to quiz him any more; for I do feel under considerable obligations to Mr. Dodd; he ...
— Love Me Little, Love Me Long • Charles Reade

... features of the face and discovering that only a vague relationship to character existed. The thick, moist lower lip is the sensual lip, say the physiognomists, but there are saints with sensual lips and chaste thoughts. Squinty eyes may indicate a shifty character, but more often they indicate conjunctivitis or some defect of the optical apparatus. A square jaw indicates determination and courage, but a study of the faces of men who won medals in war for heroism does not reveal a preponderance of square ...
— The Foundations of Personality • Abraham Myerson

... brother's edification,—"Bless you, sonny, nary you mind what thet ne'er-do-well Nat Slater sez. I'd half a mind to tell you thet yesterday, when I seed you so thick with him! Jerusalem, mister, he's a coon thet's bin allers a loafer all his life, stickin' to nuthin' even fur a dog-watch, an' as shifty as one o' them sculpens in the creek thaar! You jest wait an' make yourself comf'able haar till bye-em-bye, an' I reckon we'll fix ...
— Fritz and Eric - The Brother Crusoes • John Conroy Hutcheson

... doing a lot of talking? Walls have ears, you know, and those Jivros of yours look pretty shifty to me." ...
— Valley of the Croen • Lee Tarbell

... were going to get married, did we? Knew! Why, does anybody know anything about you, you shifty bitch!' ...
— Women in Love • D. H. Lawrence

... him, a big mouthed, shifty, kind of man, 'bout as cynical lookin' in the face as a black bass, and full of wind as a toad fish. I exchanged drinks for principles of socialism, and doin' so happened to display my roll. Murdock slipped ...
— Pardners • Rex Beach

... his body slowly eyed him from head to foot. The face that was thus revealed was a blank to George; he had expected to see one of strong character, or to discern in it indications at least of great intelligence. One of the greatest characteristics apparent was of intense indolence, whilst the shifty eyes pointed to a nature vacillating almost to weakness. Whether this really were his true character, or whether it were simply a mask used to cover the inner workings of this remarkable man's mind, George did not know; at any rate, it was sufficient, after what he ...
— Under the Rebel's Reign • Charles Neufeld

... more exquisite in expression of passionate fancy, more earnest in emotion, more spontaneous in simplicity, more perfect in romantic inspiration. But the poet's besetting sin of laxity, his want of seriousness and steadiness, his idle, shambling, shifty way of writing, had power even then, in the very prime of his promise, to impede his progress and impair his chance of winning the race which he had set himself—and yet which he had hardly set himself—to run. And if these things were done in the green tree, it was only ...
— The Age of Shakespeare • Algernon Charles Swinburne

... obeisance to Madame Omber, Popinot strode dramatically over to confront Lanyard and explore his features with his small, keen, shifty eyes of a pig; a scrutiny which the adventurer suffered with ...
— The Lone Wolf - A Melodrama • Louis Joseph Vance

... man is shifty and another is hasty wrath is not apt to slumber long, and treaties of peace are easier made than kept. When the feast was over William pressed King Louis to prepare an army at once, so that no time might be lost in giving battle to the Infidels, but the King would bind himself to nothing. 'We will ...
— The Book of Romance • Various

... huge, tall man, enormously muscular, with a high head like a block, straight in front, behind and on either side; keen, shifty, pig eyes, pompous cheeks, a raw, wide mouth; slovenly dress, with a big diamond as a collar button and another on his puffy little finger. He was about forty years old, had graduated from blacksmith too lazy to work into ...
— The Plum Tree • David Graham Phillips

... a law of Varius, who is said by Cicero to have been the assassin of Drusus and Metellus, Italian sympathisers were brought to trial, and either convicted and banished, or overawed into silence. Among the accused was Scaurus. But now, as ever, that shifty man emerged triumphant from his intrigues. He aped the defence of Scipio, and retired not only safe, but with a dignity so well studied that but for his antecedents it might have seemed sincere. A Spaniard accused him, he said, ...
— The Gracchi Marius and Sulla - Epochs Of Ancient History • A.H. Beesley

... had somehow drifted into a region of mystery, peopled only by unearthly, fantastic beings. The people I had supped with did not seem like creatures of flesh and blood. The small, dark countenance of Don Hilario, with its shifty glances and Mephistophelian smile; Demetria's pale, sorrowful face; and the sunken, insane eyes of her old, white-haired father—were all about me in the moonlight and amongst the tangled greenery. I dared not move; I scarcely breathed; the ...
— The Purple Land • W. H. Hudson

... wasn't the one to walk right into trouble. He's a shifty party, and he ain't been duckin' work all these years without gettin' expert at it. Accordin' to schedule he was to show up at the camp about nine-thirty Monday morning; but it's nearer noon when he rolls up in his car. And I don't ...
— The House of Torchy • Sewell Ford

... backs to the coffin, and had forgotten all about it and the 'goodman,' its occupant; Mary and her brother-in-law sat at the corners of the table, and their features were lit up by the flickering peats. The man had shifty, furtive eyes, set rather deep beneath an overhanging forehead, lined cheeks, and a clean-shaven heavy jaw; Mary, with sallow face, light eyes, and disordered hair sat ...
— Border Ghost Stories • Howard Pease

... slow combustion and fire the same thing in less time. Well, Clinton Browne strongly suggested that sort of athlete. Add to this a regularly formed, clearly cut, and all-but-beautiful face, with a pair of wonderfully piercing, albeit somewhat shifty, black eyes, and one need not marvel that men as well as women stared at him. I have spoken of his gaze as "somewhat shifty," yet am not altogether sure that in that term I accurately describe it. What first fastened ...
— The Darrow Enigma • Melvin L. Severy

... with a weak face and shifty eyes paused in passing to say, "You'll find out how different the boy is onct he's put to the test. He's the same breed, an' it's just like Jake Vodell said last night, there ain't one of the greedy capitalist class that ...
— Helen of the Old House • Harold Bell Wright

... you the Ruthful union show * My lords! Shall e'er I win the wish of me or no? A visit-boon by you will shifty Time vouchsafe? * And seize your image eye-lids which so hungry grow? With you were Union to be sold, I fain would buy; * But ah, I see such grace doth ...
— The Book of the Thousand Nights and a Night, Volume 8 • Richard F. Burton

... condition. The School Board visitor's book showed that in a representative district of Bethnal Green, out of 1204 families, no less than 530 had removed within a twelvemonth, although such an account would not include the lowest and most "shifty" class of all. Between November 1885 and July 1886 it was found that 20 per cent. of the London electorate had changed residence. To what extent the uncertain conditions of employment impose upon the ...
— Problems of Poverty • John A. Hobson

... crisis, an overlooked part of him appeared. The inheritance from his mother, from the forest, had always been obvious. But, after all, he was the son not only of Nancy and of the lonely stars, but also of shifty, drifty Thomas the unstable. If it was not his paternal inheritance that revived in him at this moment of confessed failure, it was something of the same sort. Just as Thomas had always by way of extricating himself from ...
— Lincoln • Nathaniel Wright Stephenson

... the popular vote," said Ronsard; "They are selected by the Premier. And if the Premier should happen to be shifty, treacherous or self-interested, he chooses such men as are most likely to serve his own ends. And it can hardly be said, Sir, that the People truly return the members of Government. For when the time comes for one such man to be elected, each candidate secures ...
— Temporal Power • Marie Corelli

... young fellow, don't shout all over the place what your business is with him," ordered the previous speaker sulkily. Lute Blackwell, a squat heavily muscled man of forty, had the manner of a bully. Unless his shifty eyes lied he was both cruel ...
— Crooked Trails and Straight • William MacLeod Raine

... this woman lashed to the mast at any time or place. As soon as Mike the Dago espied the dame it was all off. He rushed, and drove a straight-arm jab, which had it reached would have given him the purse. But Shifty Sadie wasn't there. She ducked, side-stepped, and landed a clever half-arm hook which seemed to stun the big fellow. They clinched, and swayed back and forth, growling continually, while the orchestra played this trembly Eliza-crossing-the-ice ...
— Billy Baxter's Letters • William J. Kountz, Jr.

... had among the sixteen Greek volumes[11] in her library—a copy of Herodotus; but we are particularly anxious to ascertain if the story told by Herodotus of Rhampsinitus, and the robbery of his royal treasury by that "Shifty Lad" "the Master Thief,"[12] was in vogue as a popular tale among the Scottish Gaels or Britons in the oldest times? The tale is prevalent in different guises from India to Scotland and Scandinavia among the Aryans, or alleged ...
— Archaeological Essays, Vol. 1 • James Y. Simpson

... average. The average at that time in the Grand Duchy of Baden was forty-five to a young person (when alone), according to the official estimate of the home secretary for that year; the average for older people was shifty and indeterminable, for whenever a wholesome young girl came into the presence of her elders she immediately lowered their average and raised her own. She became a sort of contribution-box. This dear young thing in the theater had been sitting there unconsciously taking ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... urge to lash out and hit the man. That eternal drooling of smoke out of his nostrils, that everlasting cigarette dangling limply from one corner of his mouth, the shifty eyes, the dirty fingernails, got on ...
— Empire • Clifford Donald Simak

... short, thick-set young man, with a flabby, pallid face and shifty eyes. He had got his job on the new liner through a "pull" that he possessed through a distant relationship with Mr. Jukes. Jack had not met him before, and, since they had been on board, they had exchanged only a few words, but he instinctively felt that he and Thurman were not going to ...
— The Ocean Wireless Boys And The Naval Code • John Henry Goldfrap, AKA Captain Wilbur Lawton

... nothing," another voice said, "either of Helen or the Greeks, or of their poets. They are a shifty race, and I can believe aught that is bad of them. But touching this princess of Navarre, I agree with our friend, it would be a righteous deed to poniard her, and so to remove the cause of dispute between the two kings, and, indeed, ...
— The Boy Knight • G.A. Henty

... the feeling of weariness and fright had worn down and a great relief and great thankfulness had taken its place, that she should never see the boarding-house again with its sneering, insulting landlady, or the office where that man with the eager, shifty, cruel little eyes ...
— McClure's Magazine, Vol. XXXI, No. 3, July 1908. • Various

... become one of those mysterious flying serpents which bite from afar. He felt the sting of her terrible eyes and his gaze grew shifty. It wandered away, and, on returning, found her teeth bared, as if feeling ...
— Fran • John Breckenridge Ellis

... observed the gleam which shot from Jogesh's shifty eyes, he would have kicked him out at once, but he waited for a reply, which ...
— Tales of Bengal • S. B. Banerjea

... circulars in every pocket—"Ball of the Elite! Smart waitresses!" and so on! I was quietly walking, at half past twelve one night, through the arcade that connects Friedrich street with the Linden, and a disgusting fellow sidles up to me, wretched, undergrown, and asks me with a kind of greasy, shifty impudence: Doesn't the gentleman want something real fetching? And these show windows in which, right by the pictures of noble and exalted personages, naked actresses, dancers, in short the most shocking ...
— The Dramatic Works of Gerhart Hauptmann - Volume II • Gerhart Hauptmann

... Judge avoided my direct gaze. Seaward he turned a shifty eye, and I knew that he was lying. He looked depressed and down at the heel, and bore the signs of recent illness. I led him, unresisting to the nearest cafe, and properly stimulated, he told me that the Washington summer had proven too much ...
— The Statesmen Snowbound • Robert Fitzgerald

... A shifty-eyed fellow, this Argo. Smooth-shaven, with a mouth slack-lipped, and small black eyes. But his features were finely chiseled; and with that bronze cast to his skin, I guessed that he was from the Venus Central State. He ...
— Tarrano the Conqueror • Raymond King Cummings

... as I saw only the upper part of his face. But those were Waddington's shifty eyes, ...
— Tom Swift and his Big Tunnel - or, The Hidden City of the Andes • Victor Appleton

... had created imperishable traditions for the American navy; they had established a morale in the service; and they had trained a group of young officers who were to give a good account of themselves when their foes should be not shifty ...
— Jefferson and his Colleagues - A Chronicle of the Virginia Dynasty, Volume 15 In The - Chronicles Of America Series • Allen Johnson

... words with a sneer upon his face. He was about the same age and size as Hector, but his features were mean and insignificant, and there was a shifty look in his eye that stamped him as unreliable. He did not look like the Roscoes, though in many respects he was in disposition and character similar ...
— Hector's Inheritance - or The Boys of Smith Institute • Horatio Alger

... every stroke. Real work disposes and qualifies a man to believe in a real destiny,—a real God. A carpenter can see that nails are never driven for nothing. It is the sham work, perhaps, of our day, that shakes faith in purpose and unity; a scrambling, shifty living of men's own, that makes to their sight a chance huddle and phantasm ...
— The Other Girls • Mrs. A. D. T. Whitney

... practical result of a sermon like this, delivered before fanatic and hot-headed young men, who hung upon his every word? That he did not foresee that they would think that they obeyed him, by becoming affected, artificial, sly, shifty, ready for ...
— Apologia pro Vita Sua • John Henry Newman

... had christened "the considering keek" was in his eyes; they were far away, and saw the distant village in process of erection; busy with its chances and occasions. Then an uneasy thought seemed to strike him and recall him to the man by his side. He stole a shifty glance ...
— The House with the Green Shutters • George Douglas Brown

... when you got your thumb on that kid," he said. "She's the shifty one, all right. Talk along to you sweet as honey, but all the time she's watching for some chance to throw the harpoon into you. Venomous—regular vixen. No sense of humour—laughs at almost anything a fellow says or does. Trim you in a minute with that tongue of hers. And mushy! Reads stories ...
— The Wrong Twin • Harry Leon Wilson

... was not the man I should have hit upon in any throng as the reaver of my father's estate; still less the man who might be Margery's father. He had the face of all the Stairs of Ballantrae without its simple Scottish ruggedness; a sort of weasel face it was, with pale-gray eyes that had a trick of shifty dodging, and deep-furrowed about the mouth and chin with lines that spoke of indecision. It was not of him that Margery got her firm round chin, or her steadfast eyes that knew not how to quail, nor aught of anything ...
— The Master of Appleby • Francis Lynde

... Then, as no one spoke: "To our loss we have found both shoal and reef between us and yonder castle. Think you not that I know, as knew Sir Mortimer Ferne, that we are shown a doubtful channel by a shifty pilot? But beyond is the open sea of all our hopes. Fortune and her wheel, Giles Arden!—nay, rather God and His hand over the ...
— Sir Mortimer • Mary Johnston

... dodging, stopping, hitting, countering,—little man's head not off yet. You might as well try to jump upon your own shadow as to hit the little man's intellectual features. He needn't have taken off the gold-bowed spectacles at all. Quick, cautious, shifty, nimble, cool, he catches all the fierce lunges or gets out of their reach, till his turn comes, and then, whack goes one of the batter puddings against the big one's ribs, and bang goes the other into the big one's ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 1, No. 7, May, 1858 • Various

... And he whom the Pope addressed, with the dignity of the Apostolic See in its reverence for the power which is a delegation of God, as Roman emperor and Christian prince, was in his private life scandalous, in all his public rule shifty and tyrannical, and in belief, if he had any, an Eutychean heretic. It may be added, as a fact of history, that the emperor went before the divine judgment sooner than the Pope; that during the seven years ...
— The Formation of Christendom, Volume VI - The Holy See and the Wandering of the Nations, from St. Leo I to St. Gregory I • Thomas W. (Thomas William) Allies

... could not make her understand that he did not know Miss Wilkinson. Then her two daughters appeared. They seemed hardly young to Philip, but perhaps they were not more than twenty-five: the elder, Thekla, was as short as her mother, with the same, rather shifty air, but with a pretty face and abundant dark hair; Anna, her younger sister, was tall and plain, but since she had a pleasant smile Philip immediately preferred her. After a few minutes of polite conversation the Frau Professor took Philip to his room ...
— Of Human Bondage • W. Somerset Maugham

... a painful contrast. His eye was shifty, his expression weak and sensual, and the hard lines of his face and the indifference of his manner told the story of a man old in criminal thoughts if not in years and deeds. For he looked no more than twenty-five, and may ...
— Emerson's Wife and Other Western Stories • Florence Finch Kelly

... his eyes in a very pained, deprecatory way. He regretted deeply the shifty currents of ...
— The Titan • Theodore Dreiser

... what pleasure he got out of all that rigmarole. The heroes of Homer and of Virgil seemed to me very bloodless, boneless creatures after my kings and wizards out of Mr. Galland's book; even Ulysses, who was a thrifty, shifty fellow enough, with some touch of the sea-captain in him, was not a patch upon my hero, Sindbad of Bagdad, from whose tale I believe the Greek fellow stole half his fancies, and ...
— Marjorie • Justin Huntly McCarthy

... I know so. Oh, he's pretty shifty on his feet, and he's got a good many people hoodwinked—your uncle always gave him too much credit, incidentally—but his New York correspondents happened to be clients of mine when I was practising law, and they've both asked me about him and told me about him, inside of the last ...
— Rope • Holworthy Hall

... In accordance with the old-fashioned custom, I was given the name of the saint whose festival fell on the tenth day after my birth. My godfather was a certain Anastasy Anastasyevitch Putchkov, or more exactly Nastasey Nastasyeitch, for that was what everyone called him. He was a terribly shifty, pettifogging knave and bribe-taker—a thoroughly bad man; he had been turned out of the provincial treasury and had had to stand his trial on more than one occasion; he was often of use to my father.... They used to "do business" together. In appearance he was ...
— Knock, Knock, Knock and Other Stories • Ivan Turgenev

... window when the moon is dead, And I will come again. The men say everywhere that you are faithless, The women say your face is a false face And your eyes shifty eyes. Ah, but I love you, Gormflaith. Do not forget your window-latch to-night, For when the moon is dead the ...
— Georgian Poetry 1913-15 • Edited by E. M. (Sir Edward Howard Marsh)

... all shifty and mist-like—like the shadow of smoke on the ground—and I couldn't tell if it was like a human being or not; but it seemed to me as if I ought to know it and what it was, and as if it was trying to make me understand something, and couldn't, just as it is when the cat ...
— Not Pretty, But Precious • John Hay, et al.

... convulsively. He literally had to shake his head violently to get rid of it. The man would be disguised perhaps as a peasant... a beggar.... Perhaps he would be just buttoned up in a dark overcoat and carrying a loaded stick—a shifty-eyed rascal, smelling of raw ...
— Under Western Eyes • Joseph Conrad

... into a near frenzy. His face had become bloated with passion, he was breathing fast. But Lawler noted that his eyes were shifty, that he turned them everywhere except ...
— The Trail Horde • Charles Alden Seltzer

... in costume in a manner burlesques their shifty and uncertain taste in literature. A book or a certain fashion in letters will have a run like a garment, and, like that, will pass away before it waxes old. It seems incredible, as we look back over the literary history of the past three ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... but Lucy, in charge of a governess, remained year in, year out, at Hamlyn's Purlieu with her books, her dogs, and her horses. And gradually, she knew not how, it was borne in upon her that the father who had seemed such a paragon of chivalry, was weak, unreliable, and shifty. She fought against the suspicions that poisoned her mind, charging herself bitterly with meanness of spirit, but one small incident after another brought the truth home to her. She recognised with a shiver of anguish that his standard of veracity was utterly different from ...
— The Explorer • W. Somerset Maugham

... at this picture of primitive defiance in a battle of grown-up men and yet she saw dimly that Rimrock was right in his estimate of Jepson's motives. Jepson did have a way that was subtly provocative and his little eyes were shifty, like a boxer's. As the two men faced each other she could feel the antagonism in every word that they said; and, looking at it as he did, it seemed increasingly reasonable that Rimrock's way was the best. It was better just to fight back without showing his hand and let ...
— Rimrock Jones • Dane Coolidge

... the reverse of prepossessing, and his movements were often most erratic. About his aquiline face was a shrewd and distrustful expression, while his keen, dark eyes, too narrowly set, were curiously shifty and searching. When absent, as he often was, a young fellow named Shipley acted as locum tenens, but so eccentric was he that even Shipley knew nothing of the engagements which took him from ...
— The Doctor of Pimlico - Being the Disclosure of a Great Crime • William Le Queux

... he would be in a strategic position and could take the lead in the secession of the Northern States. His leadership in the movement, in short, was to be the price of Federalist support at the polls. But the shifty Burr would not commit himself further than to promise an administration satisfactory to the Federalists. The conspirators had to rest content with this vague assurance and to count on Burr's ambition, and his desire to be revenged upon his enemies, ...
— Union and Democracy • Allen Johnson

... was going to church to hear a sermon from a great preacher, and she begged the Shifty Lad, as the neighbours called him from the tricks he played, to come with her. But he only laughed and declared that he did not like ...
— The Lilac Fairy Book • Andrew Lang

... about Putois, and had tried hard to put his hand on that bird. The 'Journal of Saint-Omer' devoted an article to the three melons of Madame Cornouiller, and published a portrait of Putois from descriptions furnished by the town. 'He has,' said the paper, 'a low forehead, squinting eyes, a shifty glance, crow's-feet, sharp cheek-bones, red and shining. No rims to the ears. Thin, somewhat bent, feeble in appearance, in reality he is unusually strong. He easily bends a five-franc piece between the ...
— Putois - 1907 • Anatole France

... but this fact was lost upon Scipio, who saw in him only a fellow man in misfortune. He saw the lariat on the horn of the saddle, the man's chapps, his hard-muscled broncho pony gazing longingly at the water. The guns at the man's waist, the scowling brow and shifty eyes ...
— The Twins of Suffering Creek • Ridgwell Cullum

... Peiwar Kotal in the same mountain range. Somewhat further on he met the Ameer, and was unfavourably impressed with him: "An insignificant-looking man, . . . with a receding forehead, a conical-shaped head, and no chin to speak of, . . . possessed moreover of a very shifty eye." Yakub justified this opinion by seeking on various pretexts to delay the British advance, and by sending to Cabul news as to the numbers of the ...
— The Development of the European Nations, 1870-1914 (5th ed.) • John Holland Rose

... said Job, waving his hand in the direction of 'The Tiger.' "Drinking port wine he is with that young sport, Motyer, and others like him. I don't like Motyer's face. He's a shifty chap, and a thorn in his family's side by all accounts. But Mister Raymond have a very open countenance and ought ...
— The Spinners • Eden Phillpotts

... Mrs. Druce sat disconsolately in her drawing-room, the curtains parted gently, and her father-in-law entered stealthily, as if he were a thief, which indeed he was, and the very greatest of them. Druce had small, shifty piercing eyes that peered out from under his grey bushy eyebrows like two steel sparks. He never seemed to be looking directly at any one, and his eyes somehow gave you the idea that they were trying to glance back over his shoulder, as if he feared ...
— Revenge! • by Robert Barr

... to catch a thief, Uncle John. I guess Horrocks, in spite of his shifty black eyes, isn't the man for the business. He might track the slimmest neche that ever crossed the back of a choyeuse. Lablache is the man Retief has to fear. That uncrowned monarch of Foss River is subtle, and subtlety alone will ...
— The Story of the Foss River Ranch • Ridgwell Cullum

... car... He was standing before a tiny lake at the Haight Street entrance to the Park, watching a black swan ruffling its feathers, when he felt a presence near him. He did not lift his eyes for some moments, but when he did look up it was to see his shifty friend of the morning pretending to be amused at a group of noisy sparrows quarreling over a windfall of crumbs... Fred Starratt ...
— Broken to the Plow • Charles Caldwell Dobie

... see we were all much taken up with home duties and cares, and I am afraid we have not dwelt enough upon our poor boy, and he had much against him. The discipline from my dear father, that all the elders responded to with a sort of loyal exultation, only frightened him and made him shifty. They despised him, and I do not think any of us were as kind to him as we ought to have been; though on the whole he liked me the best, for he cared for books and quiet pursuits, such as all laughed at, except David. I wish he could ...
— Modern Broods • Charlotte Mary Yonge

... glib enough now, but his shifty eyes were moving about, as though looking with a certain apprehension for someone ...
— The House by the Lock • C. N. Williamson



Words linked to "Shifty" :   untrusty, shiftiness, unsteady, shift, untrustworthy



Copyright © 2019 Free-Translator.com