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Stiffness   /stˈɪfnəs/   Listen
Stiffness

noun
1.
The physical property of being inflexible and hard to bend.
2.
The property of moving with pain or difficulty.
3.
Firm resoluteness in purpose or opinion or action.
4.
The inelegance of someone stiff and unrelaxed (as by embarrassment).  Synonyms: awkwardness, clumsiness, gracelessness.
5.
Excessive sternness.  Synonyms: hardness, harshness, inclemency, rigor, rigorousness, rigour, rigourousness, severeness, severity.  "The harshness of his punishment was inhuman" , "The rigors of boot camp"






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Stiffness" Quotes from Famous Books



... riot scenes faded on the television screen, and then the face of the announcer appeared, like the Sun coming from behind a cloud. "And now, friends," he said, "I have a special message from the makers of anti-gerasone, a message for all you folks over 150. Are you hampered socially by wrinkles, by stiffness of joints and discoloration or loss of hair, all because these things came upon you before anti-gerasone was developed? Well, if you are, you need no longer suffer, need no longer feel different ...
— The Big Trip Up Yonder • Kurt Vonnegut

... they met with bad weather and lost their foretop-gallant mast, but the rough handling they got was credited with improving the sailing qualities of the ship, as it took some of the stiffness out of her upperworks. A meteor was noted on the 23rd, like a small bright cloud, emitting flames, travelling rapidly westward, and disappearing slowly with two sharp explosions. The same day an eclipse ...
— The Life of Captain James Cook • Arthur Kitson

... The long and short of it was that, after a couple of hours fruit-picking—and it took her no less to get together the supply she'd reckoned on for her afternoon customers—she entered the house with a feeling of stiffness in her back and a feeling that answered to it elsewhere, that maybe Nandy was a better boy than she'd given him credit for. Upon top of this feeling she pushed open the door and spied his ...
— Merry-Garden and Other Stories • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... find a small hickory sapling it will be the most serviceable, because its natural strength and stiffness will permit us to use a small and ...
— The Wonder Island Boys: The Mysteries of the Caverns • Roger Thompson Finlay

... gigantic rowels, a round-crowned small-brimmed black hat, with an ostrich feather placed in the side and hanging over the top, a long rapier on his hip, and a dagger in his girdle. This buckram attire, it will be easily conceived, contributed no little to the natural stiffness ...
— The Lancashire Witches - A Romance of Pendle Forest • William Harrison Ainsworth

... to the bodily presence of the guests. Dr. Dastick, for the first and only time in my remembrance, appeared with his trousers bound with straps to the bottoms of his boots. Colonel Prowley had thrust his neck into a stock of extraordinary stiffness, which seemed to proceed from some antique coat-of-mail worn beneath the waistcoat. The collar and cuffs of Miss Prowley were wonderful in their dimensions, and fairly creaked with the starch. The clergyman, indeed, wore his dress ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 12, No. 72, October, 1863 • Various

... man, with red hair and beard, very tall, very broad, a kind of calm and polite Hercules. He had nothing of the so-called British stiffness, and in a broad English accent he thanked me warmly for my attention. At the end of a month we had had five or ...
— Maupassant Original Short Stories (180), Complete • Guy de Maupassant

... inside the church building the child's mind was held in a kind of holy fear. She spent most of her time there dwelling upon her sins and longing to be good. She did not know that the starched pinafore that scratched her neck, the tightness of her heavy braid of hair, and the stiffness of her Sunday boots contributed not a little to her inner discomfort. But she gave her undivided attention to ...
— 'Lizbeth of the Dale • Marian Keith

... who had no other end in his proposal than to appear wise and manly, soon acquiesced, since I was not to live by my learning; for indeed he had known very few students that had not some stiffness in their manner. They therefore agreed that a domestic tutor should be procured, and hired an honest gentleman of mean conversation and narrow sentiments, but who having passed the common forms of literary education, ...
— The Young Gentleman and Lady's Monitor, and English Teacher's Assistant • John Hamilton Moore

... him, no matter where he might be, or with what occupied. Surely the Scriptures never had such a curious assortment of missionaries as Borrow employed? At Seville there was the gigantic Greek, Dionysius of Cephalonia; the "aged professor of music, who, with much stiffness and ceremoniousness, united much that was excellent and admirable"; {298a} the Greek bricklayer, Johannes Chysostom, a native of Morea, who might at any time become "the Masaniello of Seville." With these assistants Borrow set to work to throw the light of the Gospel into ...
— The Life of George Borrow • Herbert Jenkins

... the curate; "then by my faith he must take up his quarters in the yard, in spite of his marvellous birth and visionary adventures, for the stiffness and dryness of his style deserve nothing else; into the yard with him and the ...
— Don Quixote • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... wheeled and with a military stiffness marched back. Slowly she nodded her head. "I gives ye thet pledge too;" she said, "since ye wants hit—but I gives hit with a right ...
— A Pagan of the Hills • Charles Neville Buck

... a brass instrument glistening in the distance, and she rejoiced to greet her first bandsman. He approached in an indifferent way, but she was becoming more used to the 'cold climate.' When other bandsmen appeared she felt that, in spite of the stiffness, she loved her corps already. She would have been quite happy had the lieutenant been there, but to walk in front of that band without the satisfaction of knowing there was one sister in the rear, ...
— The Angel Adjutant of "Twice Born Men" • Minnie L. Carpenter

... of the inhabitants of the Icelandic capital, our traveller says: "Nothing struck me so much as the great dignity of carriage at which the Icelandic ladies aim, and which is so apt to degenerate into stiffness when it is not perfectly natural, or has not become a second nature by habit. They incline their head very coolly when you meet them, with less civility than we should use towards an inferior or a stranger. The lady of the house never accompanies her guests beyond the door of the room, after a call; ...
— The Story of Ida Pfeiffer - and Her Travels in Many Lands • Anonymous

... It was just beginning to grow dusk, and she saw not far off Jacques Gaultier and her brother. The latter was singing in his native patois a gay song, much to the horror of Jacques, who thought it was dreadful to do such a thing. Dropping his usual air of hypocritical stiffness (adopted by so many to fall in with the custom of the times), he hastened forward to meet Marguerite, and with a show of politeness, wonderful for the rough Jacques, raised his hat and said, "Good evening, Marguerite; it is my fault that ...
— Legend of Moulin Huet • Lizzie A. Freeth

... fourteen—was of good height for his years, with a profusion of light, wavy hair, a thoughtful, blue eye, and a lurking humor about the lip which told of a great faculty for mischief. There was such an absence, moreover, in this city home, of that stiffness with which his Aunt Eliza had such a marvellous capacity for investing everything about her, that the lad found himself at once strangely at his ease. Was it, perhaps, (the thought flashed upon him,) because it was a godless home? The ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 16, No. 93, July, 1865 • Various

... one of the arm-chairs that stood by the high chimney-piece tall with tiles and blue vases. The stiffness and glare of the red cloth in which the room was furnished, contrasted with the soft colour of the tapestry which covered one wall. The round table shone with silver, and an agreeable smell of coffee and sausages pervaded the room. Lizzie ...
— Mike Fletcher - A Novel • George (George Augustus) Moore

... like an under-feature of the Sussex Downs, into the stagnant morass which is Houwater's most prominent feature, the last Boers were disappearing into the labyrinth of Minie Kloof beyond. But there was just sufficient excitement to take the cold and stiffness, bred of a miserable march, out of the bones of the men. The pom-pom unlimbered above the drift, and spent, at an impossible range, a belt of its tiny bombs. A spare dozen of Rimingtons, who had pushed farther ...
— On the Heels of De Wet • The Intelligence Officer

... the common acceptation of the word, means an absurd ostentation of learning, and stiffness of phraseology, proceeding from a misguided knowledge of books, and a total ...
— Talkers - With Illustrations • John Bate

... I drew a stiff white amice over my head, instead of the dear old limp and wrinkled one I was used to; and when I feebly tried to push my hands through the lace meshes of an alb, that would stand with stiffness and pride, if I placed it on the floor. I would gladly have called for my old garment; but I knew that I too had to undergo the process of the new reformation; and, with much agony, I desisted. But I drew the line at ...
— My New Curate • P.A. Sheehan

... women look at these things differently," she remarked, and from the stiffness of her tone I divined that the idea of moral qualities lurking in the nature of Lola Brandt occasioned ...
— Simon the Jester • William J. Locke

... the native officials, yet he is most affable and cheery, with a very taking, charming manner. That goes a much longer way in Persia than the other unfortunate manner by which many of our officials think to show dignity—sheer stiffness, rudeness, bluntness, clumsiness—which offends, ...
— Across Coveted Lands - or a Journey from Flushing (Holland) to Calcutta Overland • Arnold Henry Savage Landor

... has the compass and variety of nature, and her movements are free from the stale uniformity that distinguishes artifice from art. The others seem to me to have but two dreams of grace, a sort of crawling on stilts is their motion, and an angular stiffness their repose." He then cited the most famous statues of antiquity, and quoted situations in plays where, by her fine dramatic instinct, Mrs. Woffington, he said, threw her person into postures similar to these, and of equal beauty; not that ...
— Peg Woffington • Charles Reade

... compassion in her eyes, and that ill-fated man thought he had never seen any one look so altogether charming—excepting, of course, his own wife in her youthful days. She seemed to have smoothed away all the Boston stiffness as she smoothed ...
— One Day's Courtship - The Heralds Of Fame • Robert Barr

... from her home in Northampton, invited him to come down for a week at some vague future date; one of the children was unwell, and until it recovered it was impossible to fix a day. Still, they would be delighted to see him again. Her letters always had a note of stiffness in them, which was purely unintentional, or rather, purely natural, reflecting the one salient point in ...
— People of Position • Stanley Portal Hyatt

... great difficulty they could lift their hands to their mouths. As for foreigners, if they happened to sit between Russians, they were little likely to have any appetite to eat. All this Peter encouraged, on the plea that ceremony would produce uneasiness and stiffness. ...
— Historic Tales, Vol. 8 (of 15) - The Romance of Reality • Charles Morris

... an assistant butler in Madame du Barry's hotel at Versailles, was a sharp, sour-natured old fellow, truculent and avaricious. The spine of this man was a sort of social barometer; by its exact degree of curvature or stiffness in the presence of a guest the stable-boys and housemaids knew whether his rank was great or small, and whether, to please their cantankerous master, they were to fly or walk at his beck, or in the case of a mere bourgeois, to drink his wine on the ...
— The False Chevalier - or, The Lifeguard of Marie Antoinette • William Douw Lighthall

... might agree with his condition, 'twas concluded necessary to wear an air of discontent; that he should with a stately stiffness, like quality, often cough, and spit about the room; that his words might come the more faintly from him; that in the eye of the world he shou'd refuse to eat or drink; ever talking of riches, and sometimes, to confirm their ...
— The Satyricon • Petronius Arbiter

... with open coat and waistcoat, like a man's, hair unpowdered and tied behind, and a large shady feathered hat. Estelle wore a miniature of the same, and rejoiced in her freedom from the whalebone stiffness of her Paris life, skipping about the deck with her brother, like fairies, Lanty said, or, as she preferred to make it, ...
— A Modern Telemachus • Charlotte M. Yonge

... Shelley's, "brown" and Trelawny's "grey" eyes, but the beauty of expression is wanting. The mouth, thin and hard, might have caught a passing look, but certainly not what an artist would have wished to portray; while a certain stiffness of pose is not what one would expect in the high-strung, sensitive Mary Shelley. The beauty of gold-brown hair was not in the painter's power to catch. Mary was of middle height, tending towards short; her hands were considered very beautiful, and by some she was supposed ...
— Mrs. Shelley • Lucy M. Rossetti

... hear the soft pattering of feet; the two Chinese were not far in the rear. Determined to waste no time in escaping, he dashed down the alley and came into a dark street; he ran faster and faster as the stiffness in his legs lessened, turning into one street after another, and he did not stop until he was breathing hard and had left the place of his captivity several hundred yards behind. He looked back then and listened. Apparently he had distanced ...
— The Mark of the Knife • Clayton H. Ernst

... was a bride, standing there with old friends and old associations thick around her, on the threshold of a new life. The sun shone through the stained glass of the windows, and illuminated the brocade, whose old-fashioned stiffness so became her childish beauty, and flung a thousand new tints over her sunny hair, and drew so powerful a fragrance from the orange-blossom with which it was twined, that it was almost overpowering. ...
— The Brownies and Other Tales • Juliana Horatia Ewing

... dressing is in its infancy, O' Man—in its blooming Infancy. All balance and stiffness like a blessed Egyptian picture. No Joy in it, no blooming Joy! Conventional. A shop window ought to get hold of people, 'grip 'em as they go along. ...
— The History of Mr. Polly • H. G. Wells

... of our souls, not ourselves; and the web is too intensely wove and drenched in too deep a dye for us to undo or greatly change. The eagle cannot be tamed down to the softness of a dove, and no art of the husbandman can send into the gnarled and knotted oak the juices that shall smooth and melt its stiffness into the yielding pliancy of the willow. I wage no war with the work of the gods. Besides, the demands of Rome have now grown to such a size that they swallow up our very existence as a free and sovereign state. They leave us but this single city and province out of an empire ...
— Zenobia - or, The Fall of Palmyra • William Ware

... Madame Dumay, who were appointed to watch Modeste, had a certain assumed stiffness of demeanor and a quiver in their voices, which the suspected party did not notice, so absorbed was she in her embroidery. Modeste laid each thread of cotton with a precision that would have made an ordinary workwoman desperate. Her face expressed the pleasure she took in the smooth petals ...
— Modeste Mignon • Honore de Balzac

... all was that he insisted, as a matter of personal education, on coming to my room after breakfast to watch the expert manoeuvres of Britton in kneading the stiffness out of my muscles. He was looking for new ideas, he explained. I first consulted Britton and then resignedly consented to ...
— A Fool and His Money • George Barr McCutcheon

... proportion to its success in improving the taste and judgment of its contemporaries. The poems of West, indeed, had the merit of chaste and manly diction; but they were cold, and, if I may so express it, only dead-coloured; while in the best of Warton's there is a stiffness, which too often gives them the appearance of imitations from the Greek. Whatever relation, therefore, of cause or impulse Percy's collection of Ballads may bear to the most popular poems of the present day; yet ...
— Biographia Literaria • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... flag-officer was pacing to and fro, with a self-conscious dignity to which a touch of the gout or rheumatism perhaps contributed a little additional stiffness. He seemed to be a gallant gentleman, but of the old, slow, and pompous school of naval worthies, who have grown up amid rules, forms, and etiquette which were adopted full-blown from the British navy into ours, and are somewhat too cumbrous for the quick spirit ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 10, No. 57, July, 1862 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... I had at last happened, was a fruit of the reaction of artistic-minded and carelessly living people against the costly and uncomfortable social stiffness of the more formal seaside resorts of that time. It was, you must understand, the custom of the steam-railway companies to sell their carriages after they had been obsolete for a sufficient length of years, and some genius had hit upon the possibility of turning ...
— In the Days of the Comet • H. G. Wells

... the night that followed, nor did they wake till sunrise of the next morning, when women of the household of the chief knocked upon the door-board to ask if they needed aught. Then they rose feeling well and strong again except for the stiffness of their limbs, and Suzanne clothed herself in the garments that the woman had washed, combing her dark hair with a Kaffir comb. Afterwards they ate heartily of the good food that was brought to them, and ...
— Swallow • H. Rider Haggard

... mistake, and he stopped her short. "Look here," he said to her, "I don't ask you to come here to tell me anything about vehicles. When I order any sort of a trap I want it." When I heard Jone say trap my soul lifted itself and I knew there was hope for us. The stiffness melted right out of the landlady, and she began to look soft ...
— Pomona's Travels - A Series of Letters to the Mistress of Rudder Grange from her Former - Handmaiden • Frank R. Stockton

... arising from these exercises I shall notice only one or two. The firemen, when at their ordinary employments, as masons, house-carpenters, &c., being accustomed to a particular exercise of certain muscles only, there is very often a degree of stiffness in their general movements, which prevents them from performing their duty as firemen with that ease and celerity which are so necessary and desirable; but the gymnastic exercises, by bringing all ...
— Fire Prevention and Fire Extinction • James Braidwood

... tail last of all, Peter. 'Give un a good tail!' says I. 'Ah! that I will,' says 'e. 'An' a good stiff un!' says I. 'Ye jest keep your eye on it, an' watch!' says 'e. Talk about tails, Peter! 'E put in that theer tail so quick as nigh made my eyes water, an'—as for stiffness—well, look at it! I tell 'ee that chap could paint a bull wi' 'is eyes shut, ah, that 'e could! an' 'im such a very small man wi' gray whiskers. No, ye don't see many bulls like that un theer, I'm ...
— The Broad Highway • Jeffery Farnol

... daily rain bath. The following physical defects (some of which have been remedied wholly or in part) come under my observation: general weakness, weak chest (respiratory organs), bent carriage of the body, stiffness of wrist, joints, and clumsy movements of fingers, spinal curvature, extreme (comparative) development of right arm. To overcome these defects systematic exercise was necessary, including free-hand exercises, club-swinging, dumb-bell exercise, etc., meted out according to the respective ...
— A Plea for the Criminal • James Leslie Allan Kayll

... unfaithfulness to Maggie, on Anthony's score. Poor Maggie stood apart as if betrayed. Maggie and Anthony were enemies by instinct. Ursula had to go back to her friend brimming with affection and a poignancy of pity. Which Maggie received with a little stiffness. Then poetry and books and learning took the place of Anthony, with his goats' movements and ...
— The Rainbow • D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence

... olde day. There was silent uncomfortableness now; 'twas not a good turn for talk to take, sith if ye queene must find offense in a little harmless debauching, when pricks were stiff and cunts not loathe to take ye stiffness out of them, who of this company was sinless; behold, was not ye wife of Master Shaxpur four months gone with child when she stood uppe before ye altar? Was not her Grace of Bilgewater roger'd by four lords before she had a husband? ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... other things about the same time, less important in themselves, struck in the Prussian's ear the same new note of warning and doubt. He sought to obtain a small advantage on the north-west coast of Africa; and England seemed to show a certain strange stiffness in insisting on its abandonment. In the councils over Morocco, England agreed with France with what did not seem altogether an accidental agreement. But we shall not be wrong if we put the crucial point of the German surprise and anger at ...
— The Crimes of England • G.K. Chesterton

... his address and the seeming stiffness of his manner were really due to an innate and incurable shyness, but they produced, even among people who ought to have known him better, a totally erroneous impression of his character ...
— Prime Ministers and Some Others - A Book of Reminiscences • George W. E. Russell

... greeted her she saw the stiffness, the aloofness had gone from him. Kathleen had made him feel at home. He looked younger. There was color ...
— The Desert of Wheat • Zane Grey

... his knock was heard at the door. Miss Stanbury was sitting in the small up-stairs parlour, dressed in her second best gown, and was prepared with considerable stiffness and state for the occasion. Dorothy was with her, but was desired in a quick voice to hurry away the moment the knock was heard, as though old Barty would have jumped from the hall door into the room at a bound. Dorothy collected herself with a little start, and ...
— He Knew He Was Right • Anthony Trollope

... you to come—though I thought you would," Miss Gibson said impulsively, as we shook hands. "You have been so sympathetic and human—both you and Dr. Thorndyke—so free from professional stiffness. My aunt went off to see Mr. Lawley directly we ...
— The Red Thumb Mark • R. Austin Freeman

... possibly contain himself, Jerry maintained his stiffness. And then, his love bursting beyond the control of him, he gave a sniff—as prodigious a one as he had sniffed into the tunnel of Skipper's hand in the long ago on the deck of the Arangi. And, as Skipper had relaxed into the laughter of love, so did the lady-god ...
— Jerry of the Islands • Jack London

... elbows from his body, and letting the lower parts of his arms fall down, so that he went as if he carried a keg under each; his coat, though not well made, was of the best glossy broadcloth—and his long clerical boots went up about his knees like a dragoon's; there was an awkward stiffness about him, in very good keeping with a dark melancholy cast of countenance, in which, however, a man might discover an air of simplicity not to be found in the visage of his superior ...
— The Station; The Party Fight And Funeral; The Lough Derg Pilgrim • William Carleton

... close, the crown excepted, where they left only a little tuft, that reached from the top of the forehead to the nape of the neck, and even on the top of the forehead. They here left a border of hair, which, whether it was owing to nature, or the stiffness contracted by the fat and colors with which they daubed themselves, bristled up, and came forward like the corner of a ...
— The Book of Religions • John Hayward

... and three teaspoons of baking-powder; stir this a little at a time in the bowl with the other ingredients, until the mixture is a light dough, just stiff enough to roll out. If there is not enough flour, sift more in to make the dough the desired stiffness; then dust the pastry board well with flour, put part of the dough on the board, toss it lightly with your hands from side to side till the dough is covered with flour. Then dust the rolling-pin well with flour and roll the dough very thin; cut it in shapes with a cookie cutter, ...
— The International Jewish Cook Book • Florence Kreisler Greenbaum

... pent-house forward (the which had served its purpose admirably well) whiles I, perceiving the waves subsiding and the wind blowing steady and fair, laid our course due south-westerly again, and lashing the helm, went forward to shake out the reefs, finding it no easy task what with the stiffness of my cramped limbs and the pitching of the boat; howbeit, 'twas done at last but, coming back, I tripped across ...
— Black Bartlemy's Treasure • Jeffrey Farnol

... about that, Toby," the other told him, as he commenced with his customary early morning exercises, modeled somewhat after the type of those in use in the army, and which were best calculated to take all the stiffness and numbness out of his system, brought about by curling ...
— Jack Winters' Campmates • Mark Overton

... stiffness, gentlemen, I can assure you. I balanced one of the half bricks in my left hand—I'm a left-handed man in many things—and watched the head, while it was easy to see that the head watched the car. 'Now,' sez I to meself, 'that's ...
— One Wonderful Night - A Romance of New York • Louis Tracy

... have allowed himself such familiarity, for he was very formal; but he had seen M. Daubigeon more than once at the chateau; and he knew the plans that had been discussed between M. Galpin and his master. Hence he was not a little amazed at the embarrassed stiffness of the two gentlemen, and at the tone of voice in which ...
— Within an Inch of His Life • Emile Gaboriau

... the Franks overcame him whenever he recalled what had happened in the Mission garden, and the recurring smart of his wounds prevented his forgetting it for more than a minute at a time. But in the morning, when pain had given place to a bruised stiffness, he recovered the resignation which had been his before the preacher Ward came with the tidings of his Emir's great danger. For the first time since his return from the search for Wady 'l Muluk he took out his paints and sketch-book, and went and sat beneath the ilex-tree, awaiting inspiration. ...
— The Valley of the Kings • Marmaduke Pickthall

... a tall and very thin man, meanly dressed in a short, scanty jacket and well-darned hose. Unable, for some reason, to bend his neck, he carried his head with a strange stiffness. ...
— Under the Red Robe • Stanley Weyman

... was bruised on the ankle about two years ago. This is now producing an enlargement of the bone and stiffness ...
— One Thousand Questions in California Agriculture Answered • E.J. Wickson

... transformed her. Ashe sat down beside her, and they were soon deep in all sorts of gossip—relations, acquaintance, politics, and what not. All Mary's stiffness disappeared. She became the elegant, agreeable woman, of whom dinner-parties were glad. Ashe plunged into the pleasant malice of her talk, which ranged through the good and evil fortunes—mostly the latter—of half his acquaintance; discussed the debts, the love-affairs, and the follies ...
— The Marriage of William Ashe • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... destroyed the development of the theme and broke the thread of its thought. The different parts of the orchestra fell over one another, and the whole was uncertain and lacking in balance. I once severely criticised the neo-classic stiffness of Weingartner; but I should have appreciated his healthy equilibrium and his effort to be exact after hearing this neurasthenic rendering of Beethoven. No; we can no longer hear Beethoven and Mozart in Germany to-day, we can only hear Mahler and Strauss. Well, ...
— Musicians of To-Day • Romain Rolland

... but when she wanted to tie it behind she found a difficulty from a stiffness of one shoulder, and said, "It is the rheumatics, miss; one catches it ...
— The Vicissitudes of Bessie Fairfax • Harriet Parr

... it. We may remark that the strength of the iron, aside from that which is necessary to allow the pile to withstand a blow in a vertical direction, will not have to be calculated for all entire resistance to the horizontal pressure due to a vacuum caused by the excavation, for the stiffness of the piles may be easily maintained and increased by establishing string-pieces and braces in the interior in measure as the ...
— Scientific American Supplement, Vol. XIX, No. 470, Jan. 3, 1885 • Various

... honoured in placing myself at the disposal of so far-sighted a commander," said Gerrard, a little stiffly, as he saluted. Charteris laughed, and clapped him on the back with a friendly force no stiffness could survive. ...
— The Path to Honour • Sydney C. Grier

... all the boys slept in one large room, on cots conveniently arranged. Tommy was a heavy sleeper. One morning he awoke with a strange feeling of stiffness about his face, and no sooner did he sit up in bed than a laugh rang around ...
— Fun And Frolic • Various

... him, and his muscles hardened. There was no trace of rheumatic stiffness in his movements. With a bound he struck the chain-traces from the singletree at Nancy's heels. He caught the hames, leaped on her back, and digging his heels into her sides, he stretched along her neck like an Indian and raced across ...
— The Song of the Cardinal • Gene Stratton-Porter

... processions the representation is, of course, far from the perfection of Art. Both the faces and the figures have a certain stiffness, partly due to the very nature of mosaic-work. There is also a sort of child-like simplicity in the treatment, especially of the female figures, which an unsympathetic critic would call grotesque. But, I think, most beholders feel that there is something indescribably solemn in these ...
— Theodoric the Goth - Barbarian Champion of Civilisation • Thomas Hodgkin

... the examination lasted, going through the ceremonial with all the regular solemnity of the Senate House. The candidates, we are told, expected a sort of jocose business, and were little prepared for the "stiffness" of the questions which were of the deep and searching kind they were accustomed to in the case of a Greek Play or a Latin Epic. Almost at once, three-fourths showed by their helpless bewilderment that the thing was beyond them; and the struggle lay between the two well-versed Pickwickians—Besant ...
— Pickwickian Studies • Percy Fitzgerald

... He plucked nervously at his cap, and dared not raise his face to confront the calm countenance of his sovereign. Elizabeth, for her part, scanned him most critically from top to toe. She noted the cut of his clothes, the stiffness of his ruff, the size of the buckles on his shoon; from these to the colour of his hair and the healthy tan of his skin, nothing escaped her. She was rapidly measuring him, height and girth, with the proportions of her handsome ...
— Sea-Dogs All! - A Tale of Forest and Sea • Tom Bevan

... we should suspect that we might be conversing with an angel. Bread may not always nourish us; but it always does us good, it even takes stiffness out of our joints, and makes us supple and buoyant, when we knew not what ailed us, to recognize any generosity in man or Nature, to share any ...
— Walden, and On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience • Henry David Thoreau

... order that our little bird might try her wings, regain her seat and mastery of a horse, and rid herself of a first painful stiffness, I persuaded the Reverend Mother to grant the nuns a Play Day, in honour of my visit, promising to send them my white palfrey, suitably caparisoned, in safe charge of a good lay-brother, so that all nuns who pleased, might ride in the river meadow. You would ...
— The White Ladies of Worcester - A Romance of the Twelfth Century • Florence L. Barclay

... the road again, Rusher kicking up his heels livelier than before, for the run down to the lake had merely enabled him to get the stiffness out of his limbs. ...
— The Bobbsey Twins - Or, Merry Days Indoors and Out • Laura Lee Hope

... take place for another six months, by which time Terence had thrown away his crutches and had taken to an artificial leg—so well constructed that, were it not for a certain stiffness in his walk, his loss would not have been suspected by a casual observer. For three months previous to the event, a number of men had been employed in building a small but pretty house, some quarter of a mile from the ...
— Under Wellington's Command - A Tale of the Peninsular War • G. A. Henty

... of the thicket to enjoy his first sun bath. The warmth seemed to relieve the stiffness in his joints, and after each nursing during the day he attempted several awkward capers in his fright at a shadow or the rustle of a leaf. Near the middle of the afternoon, his mother being feverish, ...
— Cattle Brands - A Collection of Western Camp-fire Stories • Andy Adams

... wounded in three places on the abdomen: in the middle and on either side. On the first day, the insect seems to have felt nothing; I see no sign of stiffness in its movements. No doubt it is suffering acutely; but these stoics keep their troubles to themselves. Next day, the Ephippiger drags her legs a little and walks somewhat slowly. Two days more; and, when laid on her back, she is unable to turn over. On the fifth day, she succumbs. This time, ...
— Bramble-bees and Others • J. Henri Fabre

... the quiet but deep feeling which rises in connection with a subject on which the mind has long brooded with affection, as in the tribute to Oxford at the beginning of the Essay on Emerson. Sometimes, on the other hand, a certain pedagogic stiffness appears, as if the writer feared that the dullness of comprehension of his readers would not allow them to grasp even the simplest conceptions without a patient insistence ...
— Selections from the Prose Works of Matthew Arnold • Matthew Arnold

... worn; until this cast-off poetic apparel, stretched on the freer moral limbs of natural folk, faded and stained by weather and earth into new and richer tints, had lost all its original fashionable stiffness, and crudeness of colour, and niminy-piminy fit, and had acquired instead I know not what grace of ...
— Euphorion - Being Studies of the Antique and the Mediaeval in the - Renaissance - Vol. I • Vernon Lee

... white horse accompanied by the sound of bells, has some excellent "black and white" houses with pointed gables and enriched barge-boards pierced in every variety of patterns, their finials and pendants, and pargeted fronts, which give an air of picturesqueness contrasting strangely with the stiffness of the modern brick buildings. In one of these is established the old Banbury Cake Shop. In the High Street there is a very perfect example of these Elizabethan houses, erected about the year 1600. It has a fine oak staircase, the newels beautifully carved and ...
— Vanishing England • P. H. Ditchfield

... Thelismer Thornton dragged up his huge figure into the stiffness of resentment. He ran searching eyes over the faces before him. All were grave now, for the sounding of the first note of revolt in a half century makes for gravity. The Duke of Fort Canibas could not distinguish adherents from foes at that moment, when ...
— The Ramrodders - A Novel • Holman Day

... pressure are often witnessed. Thus, for instance, a track traversing the calf, will more or less tie the whole thickness of the structures perforated at one spot, and the apertures of entry and exit may be visibly retracted when the muscles are put in action with consequent pain and stiffness to the patient. Such pain and stiffness form some of the most troublesome after-consequences of many simple wounds. It is remarkable for how long a period after the healing of the wound and resumption of active duty the patients ...
— Surgical Experiences in South Africa, 1899-1900 • George Henry Makins

... Mowbray's boarding-house, the sailors who sat upon the narrow benches round the big room ceased their talk as the door opened and Tom Mowbray himself entered from the street. The men in the room, for all the dreary stiffness of their shore-clothes, carried upon their faces, in their hands shaped to the rasp of ropes, in every attitude of their bodies, the ineradicable hall-mark of the sea which was the arena of their lives; they salted the ...
— Those Who Smiled - And Eleven Other Stories • Perceval Gibbon

... usual lodging-house furniture, and on a faded red sofa near the fire old Mrs. Warlock was lying. Maggie could not see her very clearly in the half-light, but there was something about her immobility and the stiffness of her head (decorated as of old with its frilly white cap) that reminded one of a figure made out of wax. Maggie turned to find Amy ...
— The Captives • Hugh Walpole

... years, he did begin to develop some individuality, he could not, and never did shake himself free of those weary models; his thoughts, appearing in clothes which were not made for them, wore always a certain stiffness and unreality which did not by nature belong to them, blunting the impressions which his earnestness ...
— Paul Faber, Surgeon • George MacDonald

... its water, destroys the original nature of anything whatsoever. Indeed, all that is sprinkled with the breath of its vapour is changed into the hardness of stone. It remains a doubt whether it be more marvellous or more perilous, that soft and flowing water should be invested with such a stiffness, as by a sudden change to transmute into the nature of stone whatsoever is put to it and drenched with its reeking fume, nought but the shape surviving. Here also are said to be other springs, which now are fed with floods of ...
— The Danish History, Books I-IX • Saxo Grammaticus ("Saxo the Learned")

... is to him a day of retribution. It is the awful day when his ears are washed and touseled about; when his eyes are punched out by the towelled but unsparing hand of a Christian mother; when his shoes are put back on him for a day, and when, with a neck encircled by a collar starched to maddening stiffness, and with a pocket handkerchief the consistency of pasteboard, he is sent to the place of punishment. I have read many beautiful poems about the sweet quiet of the Sabbath, but few of the poets have given the right solution of it. It is because all over the civilized world on that day, ...
— Observations of a Retired Veteran • Henry C. Tinsley

... and left me to my mysterious fate," said the Count, with a slight degree of stiffness. "I conclude that you did not receive my letter requesting you to meet me at Amsterdam, and stating the reasons for my not rejoining you sooner; however, I am very glad to ...
— Voyages and Travels of Count Funnibos and Baron Stilkin • William H. G. Kingston

... be well to speak further of the subject of "white strength," by which is meant the stiffness or viscosity of the egg white. The white of an egg is a limpid, clear liquid, but in the egg of good quality that portion immediately surrounding the yolk appears to be in a semi-solid mass. The cause of ...
— The Dollar Hen • Milo M. Hastings

... A certain stiffness of demeanour, which we had noticed, but ascribed to pride, worked an unspeakable change in the mage. As we looked at him he hardened into our ...
— HE • Andrew Lang

... are used, such as starch, flour, mineral matters, to give the goods stiffness and feel on one hand, and on the other to conceal defects in the cloth, and to give a solid appearance to goods of open texture. The mineral substances used serve chiefly for filling and weighting, and necessitate the ...
— Textiles • William H. Dooley

... themselves by action. In this respect the most successful of his stories is yet Treasure Island, and the least successful perhaps Catriona, when just as the ambitious aim compels him to pause in incident, the first-person form creates a cold stiffness and artificiality alien to the full impression he would produce upon the reader. The two stories he left unfinished promised far greater things in this respect than he ever accomplished. For it is an indisputable fact, and indeed very ...
— Robert Louis Stevenson - a Record, an Estimate, and a Memorial • Alexander H. Japp

... music of Leo Ornstein and the age of steel. And Ravel has some of the squareness, the sheerness and rigidity for which the ultra-modern are striving. The liquescence of Debussy has given away again to something more metallic, more solid and unflowing. There is a sort of new stiffness in this music. And in the field of harmony Ravel is steadily building upon Debussy. His chords grow sharper and more biting; in "Le Tombeau de Couperin" and the minuet on the name of Haydn there is a harmonic daring and subtlety and even bitterness that is beyond anything attained ...
— Musical Portraits - Interpretations of Twenty Modern Composers • Paul Rosenfeld

... of an arm chair and a stool, together with that of the tripod table which ornaments the initial letter of this chapter, are favourable examples of the richly-mounted and more decorative furniture of this style. While they are not free from the stiffness and constraint which are inseparable from classic designs as applied to furniture, the rich colour of the mahogany, the high finish and good gilding of the bronze mounts, and the costly silk with which they are covered, render them attractive ...
— Illustrated History of Furniture - From the Earliest to the Present Time • Frederick Litchfield

... with a hat something similar to those seen in some portions of the Tyrol. It had a brim of moderate width, and the crown gradually tapered until it attained a height of six inches, where it ended in it point. The thrifty mother possessed a secret of imparting a stiffness to the head gear which caused it to keep its shape, except ...
— The Lost Trail - I • Edward S. Ellis

... No,—the latter feature of hers had never become acquainted with the former; and there was as little stiffness as nasal redness ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 9, No. 52, February, 1862 • Various

... style of Madame de Sevigne,' wrote Mackintosh (Life, ii. 221), 'is evidently copied, not only by her worshipper Walpole, but even by Gray; notwithstanding the extraordinary merits of his matter, he has the double stiffness of an imitator and of ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 3 • Boswell, Edited by Birkbeck Hill

... first day in East Wellmouth was spent for the most part indoors. He was willing that it should he; the stiffness and lameness in various parts of his body, together with the shakiness at the knees which he experienced when he tried to walk, warned him that a trip abroad would not be a judicious undertaking. The doctor having granted him ...
— Galusha the Magnificent • Joseph C. Lincoln

... because there is scarcely any shadow in it; it's more shimmery, as if I'd painted the shimmering protoplasm in the leaves and everywhere, and not the stiffness of the shape. That seems dead to me. Only this shimmeriness is the real living. The shape is a dead crust. The shimmer ...
— Sons and Lovers • David Herbert Lawrence

... speechless. He died in the course of the night. Samandre sat up the greater part of the day, and even assisted in pounding some bones; but on witnessing the melancholy state of Peltier, he became very low, and began to complain of cold and stiffness of the joints. Being unable to keep up a sufficient fire to warm him, we laid him down and covered him with several blankets. He did not, however, appear to get better, and I deeply lament to add he also died before daylight. We removed the bodies of the deceased into ...
— Narrative of a Journey to the Shores of the Polar Sea, in the years 1819-20-21-22, Volume 2 • John Franklin

... be able to fix up a sail when favourable, we proceeded on our way to cross the Barrier. We have now 360 miles to travel geographically to get to Hut Point. Mr. Evans complained to me while outside the tent that he had a stiffness at the back of his legs behind the knees. I asked him what he thought it was, and he said could not account for it, so if he dont soon get rid of it I am to have a look and see if anything is the matter with him, as I know from what ...
— The Worst Journey in the World, Volumes 1 and 2 - Antarctic 1910-1913 • Apsley Cherry-Garrard

... should I be kind but to you, my own blood, that has never crossed me, and of whom I have reason to be proud? Yes, Harry, it gratifies me to hear you admired and to learn your success. All I want now is to see you in Parliament. A man should be in Parliament early. There is a sort of stiffness about every man, no matter what may be his talents, who enters Parliament late in life; and now, fortunately, the occasion offers. You will go down on Friday; feed the notabilities well; speak out; praise Peel; abuse O'Connell and ...
— Coningsby • Benjamin Disraeli

... mind Ray's travel-lecture expressions. She dodged them, unconsciously, as she did her father's professional palaver. The light in Ray's pale-blue eyes and the feeling in his voice more than made up for the stiffness of his language. ...
— Song of the Lark • Willa Cather

... can't imagine the stiffness of my neck and legs. Let me see, how long is it since we ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, August 14, 1841 • Various

... his departure he felt something of a restraint in the household. He attributed it to the social stiffness of the German. This increases when intercourse comes to a point. Affecting moments jolt hard in him—moments when embarrassment is natural ...
— Villa Elsa - A Story of German Family Life • Stuart Henry

... be cleaned in gasoline or soap and water, using a brush. Do not rub or wring. Hang up to drip dry, or wind tightly around a bottle and leave to dry. Do not press until after twenty-four hours, if cleaned in gasoline. To produce extra stiffness, rinse in a weak solution of sugar and water. It is also very easy to change the color of ribbons by using any of ...
— Make Your Own Hats • Gene Allen Martin

... prisoners. Chief Thompson knew me and told me all. And so you've done it—and you're master in your old house again. Clarence, old boy! Jim said you wouldn't do it—said you'd weaken on account of her! But I said 'No.' I knew you better, old Clarence, and I saw it in your face, for all your stiffness! ha! But for all that I was mighty nervous and uneasy, and I just made Jim send an excuse to the theatre and we rushed it down here! Lordy! but it looks natural to see the old house again! And she—you packed her off with the others—didn't you? ...
— Clarence • Bret Harte

... he says—and I should have added, Roman buildings also, in proportion to their age, i.e., to the amount of the Roman elements in them—"stand for the most part, by their own weight and mass, one stone passively incumbent on another: but in the Gothic vaults and traceries there is a stiffness analogous to that of the bones of a limb, or fibres of a tree; an elastic tension and communication of force from part to part; and also a studious expression of this throughout every part of the building." ...
— Health and Education • Charles Kingsley

... down and a great portion of what remains seem to indicate rapid decay. The whole stands indeed greatly in need of reparation. Ducarel, if I remember rightly, has made, of this whole front, a sort of elevation as if it were intended for a wooden model to work by, having all the stiffness and precision of an erection of forty-eight hours' standing only. The central tower is of very stunted dimensions, and overwhelmed by a roof in the form of an extinguisher. This, in fact, was the consequence of the devastations ...
— Seeing Europe with Famous Authors, Volume 4 (of 10) • Various

... purport of what she said could not be understood by anybody except him.... Then also, the sensation of dining with a countess produced a slight feeling of strain, which, in addition to the correct behaviour which Mr. Wyse's presence always induced, almost congealed correctness into stiffness. But as dinner went on her evident enjoyment of herself made itself felt, and her eccentricities, though carefully observed and noted by Miss Mapp, were not succeeded by silences ...
— Miss Mapp • Edward Frederic Benson

... masses, with ever so many beautiful sorts of firmer-stemmed growths, herbaceous next the sod, woody behind, assembled according to stature, from one to twelve feet high, swinging in and out around the lawn until all stiffness of boundaries is ...
— The Amateur Garden • George W. Cable

... thine eyes," or "Still to be neat, still to be dressed"? Beautiful in form, deft and graceful in expression, with not a word too much or one that bears not its part in the total effect, there is yet about the lyrics of Jonson a certain stiffness and formality, a suspicion that they were not quite spontaneous and unbidden, but that they were carved, so to speak, with disproportionate labour by a potent man of letters whose habitual thought is on greater things. It is for these reasons that Jonson is even ...
— Volpone; Or, The Fox • Ben Jonson

... cause eclipses. The bonhta or bankra, the rigid circular bangle on the upper arm, is supposed to make a woman's arm stronger by the pressure exercised on the veins and muscles. Circular ornaments worn on the legs similarly strengthen them and prevent a woman from getting stiffness or pins and needles in her legs after long squatting on the ground. The chutka, a large silver ring worn by men on the big toe, is believed to attract to itself the ends of all the veins and ligaments from the navel downwards, ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India - Volume IV of IV - Kumhar-Yemkala • R.V. Russell

... conversation may be seriously impaired, and perhaps destroyed, by a slovenly or indistinct articulation. Every word and syllable should receive its due quantity of sound, yet without drawling or stiffness; while the voice should be so modulated as to be heard without effort, and yet the opposite fault of speaking too ...
— The Elements of Character • Mary G. Chandler

... man doesn't want to force the dilemma on her." Possibly he did not succeed in saying it entirely without stiffness. ...
— The Tyranny of Weakness • Charles Neville Buck

... sweat of a first ride, like mine on the mighty cob! My whole frame was shaken, it is true; and during one long week I could hardly move foot or hand; but what of that? By that one trial I had become free, as I may say, of the whole equine species. No more fatigue, no more stiffness of joints, after that first ride round the Devil's Hill ...
— Lavengro - The Scholar, The Gypsy, The Priest • George Borrow

... moisture, even the name [Greek omitted], in my opinion, intimates; for that name was given them not as stooping to the earth [Greek omitted] but as being in the habit of their body [Greek omitted] and [Greek omitted], earthlike and earthy. Besides, the stiffness and roughness prove the dryness of their nature. Therefore it is probable that, when they drink, their body, being grown spongy by the dryness of its nature, soaks up the wine, and that lying in the vessels it affects the senses and prevents the natural motions. For as floods of water glide ...
— Essays and Miscellanies - The Complete Works Volume 3 • Plutarch

... and confidence was generally high among the young gentlemen, and, consequently, having promised to be friendly to Ferrers, each individual, in duty bound, did his utmost to fulfil that promise, and in a little while the stiffness attendant on the effort wore off, and Ferrers was, in appearance, in precisely the same position as before, to the great satisfaction of the doctor, who was much pleased with his pupils' conduct ...
— Louis' School Days - A Story for Boys • E. J. May

... natural visualisation, and the impressionistic breadth of his brushwork. In that respect, indeed, it is impossible to go farther. Later painters have erred as much in exaggerating violent action and over-developing muscles, as the earlier master fell short in dry and laborious stiffness. Signorelli, while retaining the earnest sincerity and thoughtfulness of the earlier workers, has been able at the same time to render with modern facility every movement of the human frame, and the result is an achievement which no later ...
— Luca Signorelli • Maud Cruttwell

... (opposite the Resurrection, and not worth looking at, except for the sake of making more sure our conclusions from the first fresco). The Madonna is fixed in Byzantine stiffness, without Byzantine dignity. ...
— Mornings in Florence • John Ruskin

... took me down to the ships, and he sent Thrand for sword Foe's Bane when the night had fallen. Most kindly did the Dane treat me, but I cared for little. I could not move for stiffness and bruising after I had slept for twelve hours on end, but that was nought compared with the sorrow for what had ...
— King Olaf's Kinsman - A Story of the Last Saxon Struggle against the Danes in - the Days of Ironside and Cnut • Charles Whistler

... lie upon. But she did manage to get in, though not without shedding some tears at the thought that she was going farther away from her parents. And somehow the cart did not seem to bump so badly to-day, and the stiffness wore off instead of growing worse as she had expected. She ...
— The Little Girl Lost - A Tale for Little Girls • Eleanor Raper

... first look, he was avoiding her eye, as though he were afraid that he had betrayed himself. Audrey's maidenly consciousness was up in arms in a moment. The gleam in Cyril's eyes had opened hers. Some instinct of self-defence made her suddenly entrench herself in stiffness; the soft graciousness that was Audrey's chief charm seemed to desert her, and for once in her life she was ...
— Lover or Friend • Rosa Nouchette Carey

... good," Tish said. "Take some of the stiffness out of her liver, for one thing. But you might keep an eye on her. It's ...
— Tish, The Chronicle of Her Escapades and Excursions • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... tendon cells, and the fibres which they form constitute the new tendon fibres. Under aseptic conditions repair is complete in from two to three weeks. In the course of the reparative process the tendon and its sheath may become adherent, which leads to impaired movement and stiffness. If the ends of an accidentally divided tendon are at once brought into accurate apposition and secured by sutures, they unite directly with a minimum amount of scar tissue, and function ...
— Manual of Surgery - Volume First: General Surgery. Sixth Edition. • Alexis Thomson and Alexander Miles

... though not regular. She had the fairest skin imaginable. Her figure was perfect for her height; and there was a simplicity, a retired modesty, about her, which was very characteristic, and formed a happy contrast to the cold, artificial formality and studied stiffness ...
— The Works of Lord Byron: Letters and Journals, Volume 2. • Lord Byron

... all his late perils, enjoyed a good night's rest, and on awakening about daylight on the following morning, he found that, barring a little pain and a great deal of stiffness about his sprained wrist and bruised leg, combined with slight soreness all over, he was not much the worse for his accident, and so he told Frank, who just at that very moment had popped his head into the room to see how he ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 59, No. 364, February 1846 • Various

... de cour." One can quite imagine "la grande vie d'autrefois" in the hotel of the Florians. Their garden is enchanting—quantities of flowers, roses particularly. They have made two great borders of tall pink rose-bushes, with dwarf palms from Bordighera planted between, just giving the note of stiffness which one would expect to find in an old-fashioned garden. On one side is a large terrace with marble steps and balustrade, and beyond that, half hidden by a row of fruit-trees, a very good tennis court. We just see the church-tower at one end of the garden; and it is so quiet one would never dream ...
— Chateau and Country Life in France • Mary King Waddington



Words linked to "Stiffness" :   resolve, sternness, inelegance, woodenness, stiff, rusticity, strictness, firmness, firmness of purpose, gaucherie, resolution, inelasticity, resoluteness



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