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Thorny   /θˈɔrni/   Listen
Thorny

adjective
(compar. thornier; superl. thorniest)
1.
Bristling with perplexities.
2.
Having or covered with protective barbs or quills or spines or thorns or setae etc..  Synonyms: barbed, barbellate, briary, briery, bristled, bristly, burred, burry, prickly, setaceous, setose, spiny.  "Bristly shrubs" , "Burred fruits" , "Setaceous whiskers"



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"Thorny" Quotes from Famous Books



... The STUFF of which the tragic passion is composed, the romantic sweetness, the comic humour, are evidently his. Even the crabbed and tortuous style of the speeches of Leontes, reasoning on his own jealousy, beset with doubts and fears, and entangled more and more in the thorny labyrinth, bears every mark of Shakespeare's peculiar manner of conveying the painful struggle of different thoughts and feelings, labouring for utterance, and almost strangled in me ...
— Characters of Shakespeare's Plays • William Hazlitt

... festival of resurrection at Easter, and the day after the morrow joyous Whitsuntide would begin. Fresh green life was springing from the stump of every dead tree; even the rocks afforded sustenance to a hundred roots, a mossy covering and network of thorny tendrils clung closely to them. The wild vine twined boldly up many a trunk, fruit was already forming on the bilberry bushes, though it still glimmered with a faint pink hue amid the green of May. A thousand blossoms, white, red, blue and yellow, swayed on their slender stalks, opened their calixes ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... favourite; her patience was endless, and her good temper unflagging. What she lacked in brains she made up for in warmth of heart, and though she faithfully upheld discipline, she was apt somewhat to tone down the severity of the rules, and indeed sometimes surreptitiously to soften the thorny paths ...
— The Leader of the Lower School - A Tale of School Life • Angela Brazil

... which the man had fled. He had brought other trees with him, but he did not plant one in the empty space, but left it bare. Then David felt that he must follow the other, and so he did. He found him very speedily, but it was outside the garden, in a rough place, where thorny bushes and wild plants grew thickly. The other had cleared a little space among them, and here he set the tree; but he planted it ill and hastily, as though he was afraid of being disturbed; and then he departed secretly. David stood and watched the tree a little. It ...
— Paul the Minstrel and Other Stories - Reprinted from The Hill of Trouble and The Isles of Sunset • Arthur Christopher Benson

... during our troubled journey through life we reach little oases of almost perfect happiness, set jewel-like here and there in the thorny wilderness of time. Sometimes these are hours of mere animal content. In others they are made beautiful by waters blowing from our spiritual springs of being, as in those rare instances when the material ...
— Marie - An Episode in The Life of the late Allan Quatermain • H. Rider Haggard

... deplorably unprofitable. The boy we would breed has a great deal less time to spare; he owes but the first fifteen or sixteen years of his life to education; the remainder is due to action. Let us, therefore, employ that short time in necessary instruction. Away with the thorny subtleties of dialectics; they are abuses, things by which our lives can never be amended: take the plain philosophical discourses, learn how rightly to choose, and then rightly to apply them; they are more easy to be understood than one of Boccaccio's novels; a child from nurse is much ...
— The Essays of Montaigne, Complete • Michel de Montaigne

... what point does statecraft permit superstition to be destroyed? This is a very thorny question; it is like asking up to what point one should make an incision in a dropsical person, who may die under the operation. It is a ...
— Voltaire's Philosophical Dictionary • Voltaire

... hopes, by loves, by life, a living, and, at last, perfectly authoritative ideal of righteousness, but more than all a gradual growth of such moral power as would be commanding in the redeeming self-sacrifice and love of Jesus Christ. Every page of the Old Testament was only preparatory, as the thorny bush is preparatory for the rose. Christ is the end of the long, weary human history that leads to Him. If the laws of Sinai had been enough, there never would have been a Calvary. No one for a moment dreams that the ...
— The World's Great Sermons, Volume 10 (of 10) • Various

... now, therefore, that you have safely arrived. Now, then, let us smoke the pipe together. Because all around are hostile agencies which are each thinking, "I will frustrate their purpose." Here thorny ways, and here falling trees, and here wild beasts lying in ambush. Either by these you might have perished, my offspring, or, here by floods you might have been destroyed, my offspring, or by the ...
— The Iroquois Book of Rites • Horatio Hale

... attend her: She will bring, in spite of frost, Beauties that the earth hath lost; She will bring thee, all together, All delights of summer weather; All the buds and bells of May, From dewy sward or thorny spray; All the heaped Autumn's wealth, With a still, mysterious stealth: She will mix these pleasures up, Like three fit wines in a cup, And ...
— A Day with Keats • May (Clarissa Gillington) Byron

... all are dignified with a purpose, with a determination to correct some error, to remedy some abuse, to do good in any number of instances. They are not unlike a field of teasels in blossom—there are the thorny points of this strange plant, and the delicate and exceedingly beautiful blossom beside, resting on the very points of a hundred lances, with their lovely lilac bloom. Those who have lived where teasels grow will understand this illustration. We doubt ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 2, No 3, September, 1862 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy. • Various

... forth to discover what is the matter. With confused cries they pour from the palace and, recognising in Parsifal the whole of the enemy, assail him with abuse scarcely more unendurable than a pelting with thorny rose-buds. "You there! You there! Why did you do us this injury? A curse upon you! A curse upon you!" As Parsifal undismayed leaps down into the garden, they fall to twittering like angry sparrows: "Ha! You bold thing! Do you dare to brave us? Why did you beat our beloved?" ...
— The Wagnerian Romances • Gertrude Hall

... despatched a large boar and two full-grown sows, and were in chase of others. We came up with them when they were engaged with a fine young boar which had sheltered and come to bay in a clump of thorny scrub (wild Irishman, so called). Neither dogs nor men could reach him, and the only plan was to irritate him till he bolted. This was difficult, but at length successful, and the beast made a rush straight for ...
— Five Years in New Zealand - 1859 to 1864 • Robert B. Booth

... "Toil is no thorny crown of pain, Bound round man's brow for sin; True souls from it all strength may gain, ...
— Men of the Bible; Some Lesser-Known Characters • George Milligan, J. G. Greenhough, Alfred Rowland, Walter F.

... followed him through some brushwood and then up a rough incline. Here the bushes growing between the rocks aided them, although they had to put on gloves, to keep from getting their hands badly scratched, for some of the growth was thorny. ...
— The Rover Boys in Alaska - or Lost in the Fields of Ice • Arthur M. Winfield

... in the traditions of the art of Europe by the springing of the acanthus round the basket of the canephora, strictly the basket for bread, the idea of bread {105} including all sacred things carried at the feasts of Demeter, Bacchus, and the Queen of the Air. And this springing of the thorny weeds round the basket of reed, distinctly taken up by the Byzantine Italians in the basketwork capital of the twelfth century, (which I have already illustrated at length in the 'Stones of Venice,') becomes the germ of all capitals ...
— Proserpina, Volume 1 - Studies Of Wayside Flowers • John Ruskin

... have an outlet. He circled round it, clambering over fallen trees and forcing his way through thorny vines, till he saw, amid roots of alder-bushes, a streamlet flow from the lakeside. This he hopefully followed. Not far had he gone before a dull roar met his ears, breaking the sullen silence of the woods. It was the sound of falling waters. He hastened forward. The wood grew thinner. Light ...
— Historic Tales, Vol. 1 (of 15) - The Romance of Reality • Charles Morris

... costly splendour, fabrics by the artist wove, Dry wood from the thorny jungle, perfume from ...
— Maha-bharata - The Epic of Ancient India Condensed into English Verse • Anonymous

... adventures which to them seemed so exciting, not to say tragical, the effect astonished them immensely, as their audience went into gales of laughter, especially at the wheelbarrow episode, which Bab insisted on telling, with grateful minuteness, to Ben's confusion. Thorny shouted, and even tender-hearted Betty forgot her tears over the lost dog to join in the familiar melody when Bab mimicked Pat's quotation ...
— St. Nicholas Magazine for Boys and Girls, Vol. 5, Nov 1877-Nov 1878 - Scribner's Illustrated • Various

... electric light (and that is the modern light) gayety is almost as pathetic as suffering. Before the Montana girl hit upon the happy device that gave her notoriety, her feet, whose every twinkle now was worth a gold eagle, had trod a thorny path. There was a fortune now in the whirl of her illusory robes, but any day—such are the whims of fashion—she might be wandering again, sick at heart, about the great city, knocking at the side doors of variety shows for any engagement that would give her a pittance of a few dollars a ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... our story is ended. If you have followed us thus far, neglect not to receive what we have faintly endeavored to inculcate; and ever remember, while treading life's thorny vale, that "a kind word is of more value than gold ...
— Town and Country, or, Life at Home and Abroad • John S. Adams

... why we find that good men and women cling to the belief, and are pained by its being questioned. But, surely, it is not legitimate to assume that, in the order of the universe, whatever is desirable is true. Optimism, even when a God is already believed in, is a thorny doctrine to maintain, and had to be taken by Leibnitz in the limited sense, that the universe being made by a good being, is the best universe possible, not the best absolutely: that the Divine power, in short, was not equal to making it more free from imperfections ...
— A Candid Examination of Theism • George John Romanes

... sinner saved, a poor Son plucked as brand from the burning?"God, the Most High, give His blessing on it, then!" concludes the paternal Majesty: "And as He often, by wondrous guidances, strange paths and thorny steps, will bring men into the Kingdom of Christ, so may our Divine Redeemer help that this prodigal son be brought into His communion. That his godless heart be beaten till it is softened and changed; and so he be snatched from the claws of ...
— History Of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Vol. VIII. (of XXI.) • Thomas Carlyle

... to basaltic rocks. They passed from groups of mhowa trees and left behind a wide shallow stream, its bed dotted with pools fringed by great kowa trees, and its banks lined by a thick green cover of jamun and karonda. Thorny babul thrust their spiked branches out over the roadway, white with tufts of cotton torn by its thorns from bales, loose pressed, on their way to market in buffalo carts; "Babul the thief," the natives called this acacia. ...
— Caste • W. A. Fraser

... goodness that He will turn the eyes of His mercy upon the Bride of Christ and His Vicar, and upon me, freeing me from my defects and ignorance; but upon His Bride, by giving her the refreshment of peace and renewal, with much endurance (for in no way without toils can be uprooted the many thorny faults that choke the garden of Holy Church), and that God will give him grace in those parts where he wants to be a manly man, and not to look back, for any toil or persecution that may befall him from his wicked sons; constant ...
— Letters of Catherine Benincasa • Catherine Benincasa

... nothing half so silly, as to be concerned about such problems. But so respectability and the duties of society haunt and burden their poor devotees; and what seems at first the very primrose path of life, proves difficult and thorny like the rest. And the time comes to Pepys, as to all the merely respectable, when he must not only order his pleasures, but even clip his virtuous movements, to the public pattern of the age. There was some juggling among officials to avoid direct taxation; and Pepys, with ...
— Familiar Studies of Men & Books • Robert Louis Stevenson

... morning, having been up late consuming numerous bocks in amicable emulation of the local prowess. He had not got around to his lesson and had concluded he did not think much of his present grammar. Herr Preceptor would suggest procuring another which would strew roses no doubt along the thorny path. Capital idea. Of course they must then wait ...
— Villa Elsa - A Story of German Family Life • Stuart Henry

... the extreme fertility of the soil; though unfortunately there is not a single well among them. Almonds and apricots are the chief productions, and the raised ground enclosing them is often covered with small branches of the thorny "Sidr." Near the village we saw several "Sidr" trees, as well as tamarisks (Atel) and sycamores. The most numerous class are the thorny Opuntias, which grow round some of the ...
— The Caravan Route between Egypt and Syria • Ludwig Salvator

... back, determining to seek his boat once more. So hurried was he that he was less cautious than before, and catching his foot in a long tendril of some creeper, he fell. In falling, he struck his hand against some cactus or other thorny plant, and the spine pierced his flesh, causing severe pain. In spite of himself a cry burst from him. The cry was instantly repressed, and David, raising himself, prepared to continue his retreat. But first he looked fearfully around to see whether ...
— Among the Brigands • James de Mille

... the nuns, for sending such a love of a plaything; and, finally, from papa, for sending such substantial board and well-bolted lodgings, 'from which,' said the malicious old fellow, 'my pussy will never find her way out to a thorny and dangerous world.' Won't she? I suspect, son of somebody, that the next time you see 'pussy,' which may happen to be also the last, will not be in a convent of any kind. At present, whilst this general rendering ...
— Narrative And Miscellaneous Papers • Thomas De Quincey

... makanoe. The lehua trees that grow on the top of Wai-aleale, the mountain mass of Kauai, are of peculiar form, low, stunted, and so furzy as to be almost thorny, kuku, as ...
— Unwritten Literature of Hawaii - The Sacred Songs of the Hula • Nathaniel Bright Emerson

... southern winds." Liguanea Island, after an estate in Jamaica. Cape Wiles, after the Botanist on the Providence. Williams' Isle. Sleaford Bay, from Sleaford in Lincolnshire. Thistle Island, after the Master of the Investigator. Neptune Isles, "for they seemed inaccessible to men." Thorny Passage, from the dangerous rocks. Cape Catastrophe, where the accident occurred. Taylor's Island, after a midshipman drowned in the accident. Wedge Island, "from its shape." Gambier Isles, after Admiral Lord Gambier. Memory Cove, in memory of the accident. ...
— The Life of Captain Matthew Flinders • Ernest Scott

... come to Canada, and clear the backwoods, they have little time to make nice fruit-gardens for themselves, and they are glad to gather the wild berries that grow in the woods and swamps to make tarts and preserves, so that they do not even despise the thorny gooseberries or the wild black currants. Some swamp-gooseberries, however, are quite smooth, of a dark red colour, but small, and they are very nice when ripe. The blossoms of the wild currants are very beautiful, of a pale yellowish green, and hang down in long, graceful branches; the ...
— Lady Mary and her Nurse • Catharine Parr Traill

... doleful hour, when, retracing his steps, he thinks of what he has attempted, the difficulties of the task, the unlikeliness that he has overcome them. Misprints taking wrong numbers by the hand, black and thorny creatures, dance their wild dance round him. He is awe-stricken, and shudders; he wonders at the boldness of his undertaking; "Qu'allait-il faire dans cette galere?" The immensity of the task, the insufficience ...
— A Literary History of the English People - From the Origins to the Renaissance • Jean Jules Jusserand

... entering his library was to telephone to a well known detective agency—no surprising thing on his part, for not infrequently he made use of their services to obtain sundry details as to the movements of his opponents, and when, as often happened, cranks threatened the thorny path of wealth and prominence, he had found protection with the plain ...
— Out of the Ashes • Ethel Watts Mumford

... had been friends in youth; But whispering tongues can poison truth; And constancy lives in realms above; And life is thorny; and youth is vain; And to be wroth with one we love, Doth work like ...
— Early Reviews of English Poets • John Louis Haney

... and followed by the dwarf, I crawled though the sand in which grew some thorny plants that pricked my knees and fingers, towards the person of the Monarch of the World. He had descended from his chariot by help of a footstool, and was engaged in drinking from a golden cup, while his attendants stood around in various attitudes of adoration, ...
— The Ancient Allan • H. Rider Haggard

... procumbens, spread smooth, blue-flowered mats and rugs beneath the pines, and offer fine beds to tired mountaineers. The commonest species, C. cordulatus, is most common in the silver-fir woods. It is white-flowered and thorny, and makes dense thickets of tangled chaparral, difficult to wade through or to walk over. But it is pressed flat every winter by ten or fifteen feet of snow. The western azalea makes glorious beds of bloom along the river bank and meadows. In ...
— The Yosemite • John Muir

... set out at intervals, every way, of from seven to twelve feet, according to the degree of fertility of the soil, so that there are from 800 to 1,000 vines in one orlong of land; to each vine is allotted a prop of from ten to thirteen feet high, cut from the thorny tree called dadap, or where that is scarce, from the less durable boonglai; these props take root, thus affording both shade and support to the plant. The plant may be raised from seed pepper, but the plan is not ...
— The Commercial Products of the Vegetable Kingdom • P. L. Simmonds

... the speed of the wind as he rushed after the deer. And proceeding, guided by those marks, to a spot filled with dry winds and abounding in leafless vegetables, brackish and devoid of water, covered with thorny plants and scattered over with gravel, stumps and shrubs and difficult of access and uneven and dangerous, he saw in a mountain cavern his younger brother motionless, caught in the folds of that ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa Bk. 3 Pt. 2 • Translated by Kisari Mohan Ganguli

... forth to feed about 4 P.M., and they invariably, retire to the thickest and most thorny jungle in the neighbourhood of their feeding-place by 7 A.M. In these impenetrable haunts they consider ...
— The Rifle and The Hound in Ceylon • Samuel White Baker

... and midnight murder fed, Revere his consort's faith, his father's fame, And spare the meek usurper's holy head. Above, below, the rose of snow, Twin'd with her blushing foe, we spread: The bristled boar in infant-gore Wallows beneath the thorny shade. Now, brothers, bending o'er the accursed loom, Stamp we our vengeance deep, ...
— The Ontario Readers: The High School Reader, 1886 • Ministry of Education

... I., page 406. Mr. Rivers had a new French rose with a delicate smooth stem, pale glaucous leaves and striped flesh-coloured flowers; on branches thus characterised there appeared "the famous old rose called 'Baronne Prevost,'" with its stout thorny stem and uniform rich-coloured double flowers.), with its different shoots, foliage, spines, and flowers, will be grand to quote. I am extremely glad to hear about the seedling moss-roses. That case of a seedling like a Scotch rose, unless you are sure that no Scotch ...
— More Letters of Charles Darwin - Volume I (of II) • Charles Darwin

... approaching some sacred caves in Burmah. Lighting our torches, and each man taking one, we mounted the steep, tortuous, and slippery foot-path of damp, green stones, through the thorny shrubs that beset it, to the low entrance to the outer cavern. Stooping uncomfortably, we passed into a small, vacant antechamber, having a low, dripping roof, perpendicular walls, clammy and green, and ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. IV, No. 26, December, 1859 • Various

... coming. At the same time he sent one of his escort into Enramada to discover if Lieutenant Navarro had by any chance reached that place, and to arrange for fresh mounts. Then he threw himself down in the scant shadow of a thorny bush ...
— "Forward, March" - A Tale of the Spanish-American War • Kirk Munroe

... reverence, Above a fold where wrapped in swaddling clothes A new-born infant in a manger lay; In humble contrast to the throne of light, He left to tread the thorny paths of earth; In undefiled and stainless innocence, Which earth with all her foul iniquities Might never tarnish nor pollute ...
— Mountain idylls, and Other Poems • Alfred Castner King

... government, and even condescended so far as to unite herself with him in marriage. But the aspect of affairs became gradually more alarming, and Chegger Edour, yielding to the prevailing discontent, abdicated in favour of her husband. Turcoman, however, found that his crown was somewhat thorny; and at a critical period he aroused the jealousy of his wife by aspiring to wed an ...
— The Boy Crusaders - A Story of the Days of Louis IX. • John G. Edgar

... of the marl-pit was so irregular, and the thorny underbrush so thick, that when pedestrians wished to reach the nearest highway they, were compelled either to make a long detour or to cross the deepest part of the excavation by means of the trunks of two great trees, which had been cut in half, lashed ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... were smoking idly in the shade of overhanging rocks. Immediately they scrambled to their feet and scattered along the hillside. The stroke of axes echoed from the crags above, and soon men came staggering down to the river, dragging the thorny limbs of palo verdes behind them. With these they quickly constructed a brush fence in the form of a wing, running parallel to the cliff and making a chute which opened into ...
— Hidden Water • Dane Coolidge

... shore, composed of rocks and pebbles, is that of a little sea, not that of a pond, like the shores of Lake Huleh. It is clean, neat, free from mud, and always beaten in the same place by the light movement of the waves. Small promontories, covered with rose laurels, tamarisks, and thorny caper bushes, are seen there; at two places, especially at the mouth of the Jordan, near Tarichea, and at the boundary of the plain of Gennesareth, there are enchanting parterres, where the waves ebb and ...
— The Life of Jesus • Ernest Renan

... Constantinople she fired off three letters in a day demanding war; and when she learnt that the Cabinet had only decided to send the Fleet to Gallipoli she declared that "her first impulse" was "to lay down the thorny crown, which she feels little satisfaction in retaining if the position of this country is to remain as it is now." It is easy to imagine the agitating effect of such a correspondence upon Beaconsfield. This was no longer the Faery; it was a genie whom he had rashly called ...
— Queen Victoria • Lytton Strachey

... thorny rod of the cotton tree used for torturing the wicked in hell. The tree gives its name, Salmali, to one of the seven Dwipas, or great divisions of the known continent: and also to a hell where the wicked are tormented with ...
— The Ramayana • VALMIKI

... say, thou cost for Vice prepare, And joys the good shall know; Thou canst the crooked heart unmask and bare; Thou canst the riddle of our fate declare, And keep account with Woe. With thee a home smiles for the exiled one— There ends the thorny strife. Unto my side a godlike vision won, Called TRUTH, (few know her, and the many shun,) And check'd the reins of life. "I will repay thee in a holier land— Give thou to me thy youth; All I can grant thee lies in ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 54, No. 334, August 1843 • Various

... at first on polemical points of divinity, and diverged from this thorny path, into the neighbouring and twilight walk of mysticism. He talked of secret warnings—of the predictions of sad-eyed prophets—of the visits of monitory spirits, and the Rosicrucian secrets of the Cabala; all ...
— Peveril of the Peak • Sir Walter Scott

... solitary animal, living in trees, and being good food, is never allowed to escape. He inhabits remote and gloomy forests, where snakes take up their abode, and where cruelly stinging ants and scorpions, and swamps, and innumerable thorny shrubs and bushes obstruct the steps of civilized man. We are now in the ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Volume 19 - Travel and Adventure • Various

... do, I am afraid. If you knew the discomforts that must assail one unaccustomed—I cannot tell—but I doubt if you would go. All the doors to bliss have their defences of swamps and thorny thickets through which alone they can be gained. You would need to be a fisherman's sister—or wife—I fear, my lady, to get ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, Vol. 20, August 1877 • Various

... a coward's slave, Endless contests bore Alcides brave, Through the thorny path of suffering led; Slew the Hydra, crushed the lion's might, Threw himself, to bring his friend to light, Living, in the skiff that bears the dead. All the torments, every toil of earth Juno's hatred on him could impose, Well he bore them, ...
— Bulfinch's Mythology • Thomas Bulfinch

... millionairess by the working woman, and the fashionable society woman by the business one. Two women on horseback, and one blowin' a bugle, led the way for the carriage of Madam Antoinette Blackwell. I wonder if she ever dreamed when she wuz tryin' to climb the hill of knowledge through the thorny path of sex persecution, that she would ever have a bugle blowed in front of her, to honor her for her efforts, and form a part of such a glorious Parade of the sect she give her youth ...
— Samantha on the Woman Question • Marietta Holley

... across just such land as southern Texas, endless flat sand scattered with chaparral, mesquite, and cactus; nowhere a sign of life, but for fences of one or two barb-wires on crooked sticks—not even bird life. The wind, strong and incessant as at sea, sounded as mournful through the thorny mesquite bushes as in our Northern winters, even though here it brought relief rather than suffering. The sunshine was ...
— Tramping Through Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras - Being the Random Notes of an Incurable Vagabond • Harry A. Franck

... chronicle, to the effect that during the Diocletian persecution, in which St. Alban, a centurion, was martyred, the Romans demolished a church standing on the site of St. Paul's, and raised a temple to Diana on its ruins, while in Thorny Island, Westminster, St. Peter, in the like manner, gave way to Apollo. These myths are, however, ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... and a trial. The mere trappings of power and state, the gemmed coronal, the ermined robe, she would have regarded as the outward emblems of her earthly profession; and would have worn them with as much simplicity as her novice's hood and scapular; still, under whatever guise she might tread this thorny world—the same ...
— Characteristics of Women - Moral, Poetical, and Historical • Anna Jameson

... lie alligators, electric eels, and stinging rays. Far as the eye can reach are swamps, swamps, and more swamps, a sea of waving pampa-grass. After the swamps thickets of tacuaras (canes), forests of thorny trees, chanares, nandubay, jacarandas, urundey, talas, and quebrachos, each one hard enough to split an axe, some, like the black canela, almost like iron; the inhabitants ferocious and intractable as when the Governor himself first saw them; the ...
— A Vanished Arcadia, • R. B. Cunninghame Graham

... from the course which it was my right and my duty to pursue; and yet I found that, whatever route I took, before long I came to a tall and formidable looking fence. Confident as I might be in the existence of an ancient and indefeasible right of way, before me stood the thorny barrier with its comminatory notice-board—'NO THOROUGHFARE. By order. MOSES.' There seemed no way over; nor did the prospect of creeping round, as I saw some do attract me.... The only alternatives were either to give up my journey—which I was not ...
— Religion and Lust - or, The Psychical Correlation of Religious Emotion and Sexual Desire • James Weir

... Virtue must be reached by toil, Arduous and long, and on a rugged soil, Thorny the gate, but when the top you gain, Fair is the future and the ...
— The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3 - With Translations and Index for the Series • Joseph Addison and Richard Steele

... Clementina," she said. She added, in careless acknowledgement of her own failure to direct her choice, "I see you didn't need my help after all," and the thorny point which Clementina felt in her praise was rankling, when Lord Lioncourt began ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... comes the thorny-ground hearer. He may be a man of talent, perhaps a genius. Naturally thoughtful and ambitious, he covets both wealth and honors. He is not entirely forgetful of the claims of religion upon him. He goes to church with his family; behaves genteelly; invites the ministers ...
— Life and Labors of Elder John Kline, the Martyr Missionary - Collated from his Diary by Benjamin Funk • John Kline

... animals perform many little services for each other: horses nibble, and cows lick each other, on any spot which itches: monkeys search each other for external parasites; and Brehm states that after a troop of the Cercopithecus griseo-viridis has rushed through a thorny brake, each monkey stretches itself on a branch, and another monkey sitting by, "conscientiously" examines its fur, and extracts every thorn ...
— The Descent of Man and Selection in Relation to Sex • Charles Darwin

... the night that was all pale and glowing around, with shadows and glimmerings and presences. Distinctly, she saw the flowers in the hedge-bottoms, she saw the thin, raked sheaves flung white upon the thorny hedge. ...
— The Rainbow • D. H. (David Herbert) Lawrence

... life that had bloomed so fully and freshly in her hand, a scepter and a fairy wand of beneficence, had withered to a thorny scourge for her own shoulders. She looked about her, before her. She realized with a new, a cutting keenness, that Jack was very rich and she very poor. The chill of poverty had hardly reached her as yet, the warm certainty of its cessation had wrapped ...
— A Fountain Sealed • Anne Douglas Sedgwick

... under-wood. Along the left-hand fence ran a thick belt of underwood, sumac and birch, with a few young oak trees interspersed; but in the middle of the swampy level, covering at most some five or six acres, was a dense circular thicket composed of every sort of thorny bush and shrub, matted with cat-briers and wild vines, and overshadowed by a clump of tall and leafy ashes, which had not as yet lost one atom of their foliage, although the underwood beneath them was quite ...
— Warwick Woodlands - Things as they Were There Twenty Years Ago • Henry William Herbert (AKA Frank Forester)

... wooded hills east of Rio Paraguay; Gran Chaco region west of Rio Paraguay mostly low, marshy plain near the river, and dry forest and thorny scrub elsewhere ...
— The 2001 CIA World Factbook • United States. Central Intelligence Agency.

... that long has tost On the thorny bed of pain, At length repair his vigour lost And breathe and walk again: The meanest floweret of the vale, The simplest note that swells the gale, The common sun, the air, the skies, To ...
— The Golden Treasury - Of the Best Songs and Lyrical Poems in the English Language • Various

... and across the tops of mountains, it was no longer necessary as it had been in the hot lands. Never did I see anything more dreary than these immense lengths of desolate plains covered with aloes and other thorny and succulent shrubs of fantastic aspect, which alone could live on the sandy and waterless soil. This is a strange land, that can boast three separate climates within its borders, and is able to show ...
— Montezuma's Daughter • H. Rider Haggard

... said Nicholas softly. It was the epitaph over the unmarked grave of that other member of his race who had blazed the thorny path before him. A strange, pathetic figure rose suddenly in his vision—a man with a great brow and a twisted back, with brawny, knotted hands—an unlearned student driving the plough, an ignorant philosopher dragging ...
— The Voice of the People • Ellen Glasgow

... is generally placed in single trees of no great size, standing in fields or open jungle. The thorny Acacias are often selected, but I have seen them ...
— The Nests and Eggs of Indian Birds, Volume 1 • Allan O. Hume

... came a day when the army was in line of battle against the Saracen; when the Knights of the Temple vied with the knights of other orders each striving to carry their flag farthest into that thorny jungle of flashing scimitars, and the huge arm of King Richard the Lion-hearted hewed a red road for them all which none could equal; for was he not the strongest man in the two entire armies—this King who could sever an iron bar with a swordstroke? But ever ...
— The Iron Star - And what It saw on Its Journey through the Ages • John Preston True

... her whip, and broke into a barbarous laugh whenever she saw me resume my race through the bushes, blowing, panting, desperate, absurd. I ran thus during a space of time of which I am unable to form any estimate, accomplishing unprecedented feats of gymnastics, tearing through the thorny brambles, sinking into the miry spots, leaping over the ditches, bounding upon my feet with the elasticity of a panther, galloping to the devil, without reason, without object, and without any other hope but that of seeing the earth open beneath ...
— Led Astray and The Sphinx - Two Novellas In One Volume • Octave Feuillet

... ichthyolite bed occurs exactly one hundred and fourteen feet over the great Conglomerate; and three hundred and eighteen feet higher up I found a second ichthyolite bed, as rich in fossils as the first, with its thorny Acanthodians twisted half round, as if still in the agony of dissolution, and its Pterichthyes still extending their spear-like arms in the attitude of defence. The discovery enabled me to assign to their true places the various ichthyolite beds of the district. Those ...
— The Cruise of the Betsey • Hugh Miller

... all, lifting their thorny whips, fell to scourging him so savagely that Fra Mino's body was soon one wound from head to toe. Now and again they would stop to cough and spit, only to begin afresh, plying their whips more vigorously ...
— The Well of Saint Clare • Anatole France

... Bushes, thorny twigs, and the roots of trees hindered their progress. The child followed the vision of his mother, made clear now and then by the moon's rays across the heavy foliage. They were in the mysterious wood of the ...
— An Eagle Flight - A Filipino Novel Adapted from Noli Me Tangere • Jose Rizal

... omitted to mention the provocation which gave rise to many of them. Eusden, Colley Cibber, Dennis, Theobald, Blackmore, Smyth, and Lord Hervey are among the prominent criminals placed in Pope's pillory, and the student of the age may find an idle entertainment in tracking the poet's thorny course, while he gives an unenviable notoriety to names of which the larger number were 'born ...
— The Age of Pope - (1700-1744) • John Dennis

... with double tongue, Thorny hedgehogs, be not seen; Newts and blind-worms do no wrong; Come not ...
— Tales from Shakespeare • Charles and Mary Lamb

... again in silence till the moon declined before the coming day, the cruel day, which brought the heat and the following crows again. Dawn brought them to a patch of "dead finish," as the settlers call a dense and thorny scrub with pretty green leaves, through which it is well nigh impossible to force a way even under the most favourable circumstances; and which presented an utterly impassable barrier to men in their condition. They turned aside once more, and Anderson ...
— The Moving Finger • Mary Gaunt

... when at last I emerged upon it, that it was a distance of some six or seven miles from the settlement, though, owing to my ignorance of the way, it had taken me a whole morning to cover it. Did she have to thread these thorny thickets every time she came to the little town? No; doubtless she was acquainted with some easier ...
— Pieces of Eight • Richard le Gallienne

... without a Penny; but as I begin to recover, and have a little time to Think, I can't help considering myself, as one whisk'd up behind a Witch upon a Broomstick, and hurried over Mountains and Dales through confus'd Woods and thorny Thickets, and when the Charm is ended, and the poor Wretch dropp'd in a Desart, he can give no other Account of his enchanted Travels, but that he is much fatigued in Body and Mind, his Cloaths torn, and worse in all other Circumstances, without ...
— The Wits and Beaux of Society - Volume 1 • Grace Wharton and Philip Wharton

... sold, and my price was set at seaven pence more then Philebus gave for me. There fortuned to passe by a Baker of the next village, who after that he had bought a great deale of corne, bought me likewise to carry it home, and when he had well laded me therewith, be drave me through a thorny and dangerous way to his bake house; there I saw a great company of horses that went in the mill day and night grinding of corne, but lest I should be discouraged at the first, my master entertained me well, for ...
— The Golden Asse • Lucius Apuleius

... in his heart a strange wish for exploring The thorny and briery place, And, lo, a path through the deepest thicket ...
— On the Tree Top • Clara Doty Bates

... how early in the morning, before the flush of dawn has left the sky, a man makes his way along the steep deserted bank like a tiny speck: the ancient, mast-like pines rise up in terraces on both sides of the torrent, gaze sternly at the free man and murmur menacingly; rocks, huge stones, and thorny bushes bar his way, but he is strong in body and bold in spirit, and has no fear of the pine-trees, nor stones, nor of his solitude, nor of the reverberating echo which repeats the sound of every footstep ...
— The Witch and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... knew not where; Up windy downs far-stretching, bleak and bare; Through swamps that soddened under stagnant air; In blackest woods and brambled mesh, Thorny bushes tore my flesh: ...
— My Beautiful Lady. Nelly Dale • Thomas Woolner

... a red-hot stone," groaned Rainiharo, "somewhere in my inwards! Thorny shrubs are revolving in my stomach! ...
— The Fugitives - The Tyrant Queen of Madagascar • R.M. Ballantyne

... which has been given to us by the "noble company of the apostles, the goodly fellowship of the prophets, the noble army of martyrs," who, refusing to take the easy road of popularity, have deliberately chosen the thorny path of insult, ignominy, destruction, for the faith that glowed within their souls. Isaiah, Jeremiah, Socrates, St. Paul, Wycliff, Huss, Savanarola, Martin Luther, John Knox, George Fox, John Wesley, Joseph Priestly, Theodore Parker—how the names multiply, all as sweet as honey to our lips, of ...
— Heroes in Peace - The 6th William Penn Lecture, May 9, 1920 • John Haynes Holmes

... The thorny place is one who hears, And does the truth receive; But finds that cares of life and wealth, His ...
— The Parables Of The Saviour - The Good Child's Library, Tenth Book • Anonymous

... that offered to my thoughts at that time was, to get up into a thick bushy tree like a fir, but thorny, which grew near me, and where I resolved to sit all night, and consider the next day what death I should die, for as yet I saw no prospect of life. I walked about a furlong from the shore, to see if I could find any fresh water to drink, which I did, ...
— The Children's Hour, v 5. Stories From Seven Old Favorites • Eva March Tappan

... in "El Jaridiah's" characteristics when he heard the Arab's unfeigned pleasure at the statement that it was not the lady actually rescued, but a friend of hers, whom the thievish dogs aforesaid meant to carry off. Abdullah then saw a path out of the thorny labyrinth which beset him. It was evident that in serving Miss Fenshawe he had displayed his fidelity to Mrs. Haxton! The notion was so gratifying that he made a suggestion which assuredly would not otherwise have occurred to him. When they reached the camp-fire ...
— The Wheel O' Fortune • Louis Tracy

... 2) By sorrow schooled. Heavy the hand of God, Thorny and rough the paths my feet have trod, Humbled my pride, my pleasure turned to pain; Poor mortals, how we labor all in vain! ...
— The Oedipus Trilogy • Sophocles

... Saviour dear, in glory dight, dressed. Adored of all the powers of heavens bright! Lo, where that head that bled with thorny wound, Shines ever with celestial honour crowned! That hand that held the scornful reed Makes ...
— England's Antiphon • George MacDonald

... utterance, he seeks advice from some one who has attained success in the profession of literature. In most instances he receives no satisfactory criticism, and is compelled to act on innate conviction of his right to enter the "thorny path" and fight his way up to the top, where, we are ...
— The Writer, Volume VI, April 1892. - A Monthly Magazine to Interest and Help All Literary Workers • Various

... way. There were no cabins at which he could retrieve his error, and, after many vain endeavors to find the track, he let his horse take his own course; and, carrying his master under low-branched trees and through thorny thickets, across a swamp, he brought him out at last by a much shorter route than he had taken in going, on the farther bank of the river, near ...
— The Cabin on the Prairie • C. H. (Charles Henry) Pearson

... if by "won" you just mean "sold," That's quite another compact. Well, this scamp, Continuing descent from bad to worse, Must leave his fine and fashionable prey (Who—fathered, brothered, husbanded,—are hedged About with thorny danger) and apply His arts to this poor country ignorance Who sees forthwith in the first rag of man Her model hero! Why continue waste On such a woman treasures of a heart Would yet find solace,—yes, my ...
— Browning's England - A Study in English Influences in Browning • Helen Archibald Clarke

... violence of the winde they shall swarue any way. Vpon the ascent or rising from one leuell to another, you may plant the Barberry-trees, Feberries, and Raspberries, of all sorts, which being spreading, thorny and sharpe trees, take great delight to grow thicke and close together, by which meanes often times they make a kinde of wall, hedge, or ...
— The English Husbandman • Gervase Markham

... plucked the thorny rose, 10 And when May pulled the brier, Half the birds would swoop to see, Half the beasts draw nigher; Half the fishes of the streams Would dart up to admire: But when Margaret plucked a flag-flower, Or poppy hot aflame, All the beasts ...
— Goblin Market, The Prince's Progress, and Other Poems • Christina Rossetti

... of things with foreigners," he said, and he looked down at his plate. That poor devil of a Tristram was going to have a thorny time in the future, he thought, and he was to be best man at the wedding; it would be like giving the old chap over to a tigress! But, by Jove!—such a beautiful one would be worth being eaten by—he added ...
— The Reason Why • Elinor Glyn

... morning eglantine, Making the far old English ways divine! Though from thy stock our mateless rose was bred, Staining the world's skies with its red, Our garden gives no scent so fresh as thine, Sweet, thorny-seeming eglantine. ...
— An Anthology of Australian Verse • Bertram Stevens

... importance upon my hands, to give the reader the least reason to believe that I am driven to such paltry shifts, in order to eke out the volume. Suffice it then to say, our adventurer passed a very uneasy night, not only from the thorny suggestions of his mind, but likewise from the anguish of his body, which suffered from the hardness of his couch, as well as from the natural inhabitants thereof, that did not tamely suffer his intrusion. In the morning he was waked by Pipes, who brought upon his shoulder ...
— The Adventures of Peregrine Pickle, Volume I • Tobias Smollett

... few there are left, old, tottering, and gray, Apart and forgotten, as those who are dead; Yet sometimes they meet on life's thorny way, And talk, and live over the days that have fled. Oh! how I remember those faces so bright, Which beamed in their boyhood with honesty's ray! And oft, when alone, in the stillness of night, We're all at the school-house again, ...
— The Memories of Fifty Years • William H. Sparks

... So I am queen. I have accepted my lot, and henceforth my existence will be a ceaseless struggle and wrestling with death. I will at least sell my life as dearly as possible; and the maxim which Cranmer has given me shall hereafter be my guide on the thorny ...
— Henry VIII And His Court • Louise Muhlbach

... and work a pattern of dappled light and shadow on the grass, for our delectation. Most of the way had been made familiar in pursuit of some wild boar that would not stand and fight but hurried into the wildest and most difficult part of the forest, charging through every bush, however thick and thorny, in vain endeavour to shake off the pitiless pack. For my companion no corner of the forest lacked memories, some recent, some remote, but all concerned with the familiar trial of skill in which the boar had at last yielded ...
— Morocco • S.L. Bensusan

... path my father's foot Had trod me out (which suddenly broke off What time he dropped the wallet of the flesh And passed) alone I carried on, and set My child-heart 'gainst the thorny underwood, To reach the grassy shelter of the trees, Ah, babe i' the wood, without a brother-babe! My own self-pity, like the redbreast bird, Flies back to cover all that past ...
— Wee Wifie • Rosa Nouchette Carey

... I called Lucien's attention to a small thorny shrub, a kind of mimosa, called huizachi by the Indians, who use its pods for dyeing black cloth, and for making a tolerably useful ink. The plain assumed by degrees a less monotonous aspect. Butterflies began to hover round us, and our young ...
— Adventures of a Young Naturalist • Lucien Biart

... an eye on the technicians. They were working on a bush of some kind that had little thorny-looking nuts on it, clipping bits off here and there. He wasn't at all sure what they did with all those little pieces and bits, but that was none of his business, anyway. Let the brains take care of that stuff; ...
— Cum Grano Salis • Gordon Randall Garrett

... the Russian authorities, with a view to his acceptance of the Bulgarian crown. By the vote of the Bulgarian Chamber, it was offered to him on April 29, 1879. He accepted it, knowing full well that it would be a thorny honour for a youth of twenty-two years of age. His tall commanding frame, handsome features, ability and prowess as a soldier, and, above all, his winsome address, seemed to mark him out as a natural leader of men; and he received a warm welcome from the Bulgarians ...
— The Development of the European Nations, 1870-1914 (5th ed.) • John Holland Rose

... She had hoped for a chat with Graydon that evening, which might lead to a better understanding, and end their tendency to rather thorny badinage. But she heard him chatting gayly with Miss Wildmere and Mr. Arnault in the distance; therefore she said, quietly, "It is time for me to get even with you first. To refuse would not be nice after the lovely drive you took us the ...
— A Young Girl's Wooing • E. P. Roe

... down on the forest, and although the road was rough and thorny Savitri stumbled on and on, following the sound of Yama's footsteps although she could no longer see him. Finally he turned into a gloomy cavern, but she plodded on, until she so excited his compassion that he promised her one more ...
— The Book of the Epic • Helene A. Guerber

... forest extended its gloomy arms athwart the horizon; but did not arrest my aerial journey. The thick boughs groaned and crashed beneath me, as I was dragged through their matted foliage; my limbs lacerated and torn, and my hair tangled amid the thorny branches. Vainly I endeavoured to cling to the twigs which impeded my passage, but they eluded my frenzied grasp, or snapped in my hands, while my cries for help were drowned in the thundering sweep of the mighty gale. Onward—onward. I was still ...
— The Monctons: A Novel, Volume I • Susanna Moodie

... protect the plants which bear them from the ravages of grazing cattle is, of course, an additional motive for their presence. Under cultivation, in well-watered garden soil—and how many charming varieties of barberries are cultivated—the thorny shrub loses much of its armor, putting forth many more leaves, in rosettes, along more numerous twigs, instead. Even the prickly pear cactus might become mild as a lamb were it to forswear sandy deserts and live in marshes instead. Country ...
— Wild Flowers Worth Knowing • Neltje Blanchan et al

... confidence of the community as a whole in the wisdom with which this delicate task would be executed, to find that it was entrusted to a family party, one of which was a mere boy; and the mistrust must have been increased when, somewhat later in the course of the year, the thorny questions which immediately encompassed the task of distribution led to the introduction by Tiberius of another law, which gave judicial power to the triumvirs, for the purpose of determining what was public land and what was private.[376] The fortunes ...
— A History of Rome, Vol 1 - During the late Republic and early Principate • A H.J. Greenidge

... struggling days, and Mr. Bradlaugh was very kind to me. I remember the Sunday evening when I told him I thought of taking to the Freethought platform. He pointed out the hard and thorny path I should have to tread, but when he saw I was resolved on the attempt, he put his hand on my shoulder and said, "There is no young man in the movement I ...
— Reminiscences of Charles Bradlaugh • George W. Foote

... of grain, and even cotton and silk, were chiefly clothed with fruit-trees—orange and lemon, and the fig, the olive, and the vine. Sometimes the land was uncultivated, and was principally covered with myrtles, of large size, and oleanders, and arbutus, and thorny brooms. Here game abounded, while from the mountain-forests the wolf sometimes descended, and spoiled and ...
— Lothair • Benjamin Disraeli

... even in the Sierra have I ever made the acquaintance of mountains more rigidly inaccessible. The slopes are exceptionally steep and insecure to the foot of the explorer, however great his strength or skill may be, but thorny chaparral constitutes their chief defense. With the exception of little park and garden spots not visible in comprehensive views, the entire surface is covered with it, from the highest peaks to the ...
— Steep Trails • John Muir

... having made off with them while the drivers were in a roadhouse obtaining refreshments. For this trick, Pepper and some of the others got after the Pornellites and made them prisoners in a cave, from which they could escape only by going out a back way, through some water and mud, and thorny bushes. ...
— The Mystery at Putnam Hall - The School Chums' Strange Discovery • Arthur M. Winfield

... simple love of the things That glide in grasses and rubble of woody wreck; Or change their perch on a beat of quivering wings From branch to branch, only restful to pipe and peck; Or, bristled, curl at a touch their snouts in a ball; Or cast their web between bramble and thorny hook; The good physician Melampus, loving them all, Among them walked, as a scholar ...
— From a Cornish Window - A New Edition • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... the matter, child?" I said, but she would not speak. I tried to draw her from her lair, but she tangled herself stubbornly still farther among the thorny vines, and I could not move her. I touched her neck: it was cold. Frightened, I ran back to ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science - Vol. XVII, No. 102. June, 1876. • Various

... which shows a very plebeian and pachydermatous temper; and they laugh all over in the face of an April day, shaking their little golden clusters of blossom in such a merry way that the Rose Tree, who was herself very reserved and thorny, had really scruples about speaking ...
— Bimbi • Louise de la Ramee

... that which the Holy Evangelists imposed. These relics were fragments of bones set in caskets and frames, and portions of blood—relics, as the monks alleged, of apostles or of the Savior—and small pieces of wood, similarly preserved, which had been portions of the cross of Christ or of his thorny crown. These things were treasured up with great solemnity in the monastic establishments and in the churches of these early times, and were regarded with a veneration and awe, of which it is almost beyond our power even to conceive. ...
— William the Conqueror - Makers of History • Jacob Abbott

... without pausing to relight the pine splinters, they rushed pell-mell towards the sound of barking, bumping into trees, stumbling over logs, scratching their faces and tearing their clothes on thorny vines. But no one minded. Bim had treed a 'coon in the shortest time on record, and now if they could only get it, the triumph would be ample reward for ...
— Raftmates - A Story of the Great River • Kirk Munroe

... young friend who had been consigned to his care by a dying mother; he feared to renew the intercourse, until her character was developed; while poor Mabel had little thought how closely she was watched along the humble and thorny paths she had ...
— Turns of Fortune - And Other Tales • Mrs. S. C. Hall

... Blackberry. There is not much to be said for a plant that is the proverbial type of a barren country or untidy cultivation, yet the Bramble and the Blackberry have their charms, and we could ill afford to lose them from our hedgerows. The name Bramble originally meant anything thorny, and Chaucer applied ...
— The plant-lore & garden-craft of Shakespeare • Henry Nicholson Ellacombe



Words linked to "Thorny" :   hard, difficult, thorn, setose, armed, thorniness



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