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Time out of mind   /taɪm aʊt əv maɪnd/   Listen
Time out of mind

noun
1.
The distant past beyond memory.  Synonym: time immemorial.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Time out of mind" Quotes from Famous Books



... said Rufus; "this is Bright Spot, from time out of mind the place for strawberries; nobody ever comes here but to pick them. The ...
— Hills of the Shatemuc • Susan Warner

... orders, and to be directed and instructed in everything, that he never thinks for himself, and never acquires the least forethought or capability of guiding himself in any position apart from the active duties of his profession; consequently, from time out of mind, he has been especially doomed to be victimised on the land. No sooner has he been paid off after a voyage, than he is—at least at all the great ports—beset with 'crimps,' 'runners,' and other land-sharks, who entice ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 453 - Volume 18, New Series, September 4, 1852 • Various

... from the Quo Warranto Rolls that Edward I. possessed a market there. The town was noted for the manufacture of ropes and cables as early as 1213, and an act of parliament (21 Henry VIII.) shows that the inhabitants had "from time out of mind" made the cables, ropes and hawsers for the royal navy and for most of the other ships. Bridport was represented in parliament by two members from 1395 to 1867. In the latter year the number was reduced to one, and in 1885 ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 3 - "Brescia" to "Bulgaria" • Various

... William Butler and Stephen T. Logan, all sustaining high and spotless characters, and justly proud of them, would deliberately perjure themselves, without any motive whatever, except to injure a man's election; and that, too, a man who had been a candidate, time out of mind, and yet who had never been ...
— The Papers And Writings Of Abraham Lincoln, Complete - Constitutional Edition • Abraham Lincoln

... means and the authority to safeguard in practice the right of a great people, who are at peace and who are desirous of exercising none but the rights of peace, to follow the pursuit of peace in quietness and good-will—rights recognized time out of mind by all the civilized nations of ...
— Why We are at War • Woodrow Wilson

... man she might happen to marry, inevitable that she would become, to a large degree, what he wished and expected, that her thoughts would take on the complexion of his. Lacking in strength of character? In power of resistance, certainly. Time out of mind, such malleability has been the cross of the Magdalenes. Yet in what else lies the secret of the harmony achieved by ...
— Dust • Mr. and Mrs. Haldeman-Julius

... of the Nose, it will quickly appear, And your lordship," he said, "will undoubtedly find, That the Nose has the spectacles always to wear, Which amounts to possession, time out of mind." ...
— McGuffey's Fifth Eclectic Reader • William Holmes McGuffey

... St. Maurs and such-like folk, have led armies and made laws time out of mind; but those noble families would be somewhat astonished-if the accounts ever came to be fairly taken-to find how small their work for England has been by the side of that of the Browns." (Tom Brown's Schooldays, ...
— The Romance of Names • Ernest Weekley

... proportion. It was evident that a great change was going on in the hearts and habits of all. Profane oaths and light jests, which even the gentry condescended to indulge in (as they did in other things better left to their inferiors), were banished from all society, even that of travelling tinkers, time out of mind a coarse set of fellows. Feuds handed down from father to son were dropped at once, and old enemies met with kind greetings, and parted friends. Every body seemed to prosper, and nobody was the worse for ...
— The International Monthly, Volume 5, No. 3, March, 1852 • Various

... for this opinion. First, that forest was known to be inhabited time out of mind by the fairies, and no hunter cared to go beyond its border—so all the west country believed it to be solidly full of old trees to the heart. Secondly, the people of Stumpinghame were no travelers—man, woman, and child had feet so ...
— Children's Literature - A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes • Charles Madison Curry

... his Mechanick Exercises, vol. ii. p. 356. 4to. 1683, says: "Every printing-house is by the custom of time out of mind called a chappel; and all the workmen that belong to it are members of the chappel: and the oldest freeman is father of the chappel. I suppose the style was originally conferred upon it by the courtesie of some great Churchman, or men, (doubtless, when chappels were in more veneration than of late ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 62, January 4, 1851 • Various

... a hole in the ground near the water's edge in a pillar of flame about thirty inches high, and which has been burning time out of mind. It also bubbles, or, rather, foams up, for several yards in the river, rising at low water even as far out as mid-stream. There is a level plateau at the springs, several acres in extent, backed by a range of hills, and if a stake is driven anywhere into this, and withdrawn, the gas, ...
— Through the Mackenzie Basin - A Narrative of the Athabasca and Peace River Treaty Expedition of 1899 • Charles Mair

... past, by night and by day, have passed between the islands of Sumatra and Java, freighted with the costliest cargoes of the east. But while they freely waive a ceremonial like this, they do by no means renounce their claim to more solid tribute. Time out of mind the piratical proas of the Malays, lurking among the low shaded coves and islets of Sumatra, have sallied out upon the vessels sailing through the straits, fiercely demanding tribute at the point of their spears. Though by the repeated bloody chastisements they have received at the hands ...
— Moby-Dick • Melville

... the world be luckier if this house, Where passion and precision have been one Time out of mind, became too ruinous To breed the lidless eye that loves the sun? And the sweet laughing eagle thoughts that grow Where wings have memory of wings, and all That comes of the best knit to the best? Although Mean roof-trees were the sturdier for its fall, How should their luck ...
— The Green Helmet and Other Poems • William Butler Yeats

... From time out of mind crosses have been the rallying point for the discussion of urgent public affairs. It was so in London. Paul's Cross was the constant meeting-place of the citizens of London whenever they were excited by oppressive laws, the troublesome ...
— Vanishing England • P. H. Ditchfield

... pleasure-grounds outspread.' Intent, I searched the region round, And in low hut the dweller found: Woe is me for my hope's downfall! Is yonder squalid peasant all That this proud nursery could breed For God's vicegerency and stead? Time out of mind, this forge of ores; Quarry of spars in mountain pores; Old cradle, hunting-ground and bier Of wolf and otter, bear and deer; Well-built abode of many a race; Tower of observance searching space; Factory of river and of rain; Link in the Alps' globe-girding chain; By million changes skilled ...
— Poems - Household Edition • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... From time out of mind the suburb of London known as "the Bankside"—the term was loosely applied to all the region south of the river and west of the bridge—had been identified with sports and pastimes. On Sundays, holidays, and other festive occasions, the citizens, their wives, and their apprentices were ...
— Shakespearean Playhouses - A History of English Theatres from the Beginnings to the Restoration • Joseph Quincy Adams

... Garter I went, and asked for Captain G. I hoped I should not find him here; for this house had been, time out of mind, the rendezvous of warrant-officers, mates, and midshipmen. Here, however, he was; I sent up my card, and was admitted to his presence. He was seated in a small parlour, with a glass of brandy and water, or at least the remains of it, before him; ...
— Frank Mildmay • Captain Frederick Marryat

... From time out of mind the sage in velvet has serenely contemplated Diogenes in his tub; not that our philosopher seemed ...
— The Son of Clemenceau • Alexandre (fils) Dumas

... her name interested me. La Fosseuse was born here in the town. Her father, a laborer from Saint Laurent du Pont, was nicknamed Le Fosseur, which is no doubt a contraction of fossoyeur, for the office of sexton had been in his family time out of mind. All the sad associations of the graveyard hang about the name. Here as in some other parts of France, there is an old custom, dating from the times of the Latin civilization, in virtue of which a woman takes her husband's name, with the addition of a feminine termination, and ...
— The Country Doctor • Honore de Balzac

... in question was a student more than fifty years old, who, time out of mind, had been making a living by fair-copying all sorts of difficult manuscripts. He was an honest, simple creature who, in his time, had tried hard to push his way into every conceivable business and profession without ever succeeding till, at ...
— The Poor Plutocrats • Maurus Jokai

... unusual face, nervous, finely cut, with clear, elegant lines that betokened ancestry. Men of letters would have called it a historic face, and would have conjectured at what old passions, long asleep, what old sorrows forgotten time out of mind, doing battle together in ages gone, had curved those delicate nostrils, left their unconscious memory in those eyes. But Eric read no meaning in these details. To him this beauty was something more than color and line; it was as a flash of white light, in which ...
— A Collection of Stories, Reviews and Essays • Willa Cather

... trickery, evasion, procrastination, spoliation, botheration, under false pretences of all sorts, there are influences that can never come to good. The very solicitors' boys who have kept the wretched suitors at bay, by protesting time out of mind that Mr. Chizzle, Mizzle, or otherwise was particularly engaged and had appointments until dinner, may have got an extra moral twist and shuffle into themselves out of Jarndyce and Jarndyce. The receiver in ...
— Bleak House • Charles Dickens

... thirteenth year of the reign of Henry VII. "All the gardens which had continued time out of mind without Moorgate: to wit, about and beyond the lordship of Fensberry (Finsbury) were destroyed: and of them was made plain field for archers to shoote in." This was the origin of what is now ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 19, - Issue 553, June 23, 1832 • Various

... all my life. My smallest action, my most trivial habit, was familiar to them. They had seen me grow before their eyes—dutiful, obedient, diligent, honest, sober, truthful. In their hearts they knew that I deserved all these epithets. They themselves time out of mind had applied them to me. I stood now, at my early age, and on my own account, on the threshold of a career of honorable trade, surely as worthy now as it was when Sir William began at it far more humbly. Yet with all these creditable things known to them, I ...
— In the Valley • Harold Frederic

... friends, and if those friends lived in Michigan we should not be troubled with them long in New York. If the immigration came all from one country, we should, because of that, have no problem at all, or not much of one at all events, except perhaps in the Jews, who have lived in Ghettos since time out of mind. The others would speedily be found making only a way station of New York. It is the constant kaleidoscopic change I spoke of that brings us hordes every few years who have to break entirely new ground. It seems to have been ...
— The Battle with the Slum • Jacob A. Riis

... SON TORT, as a gallant French chevalier, Mons, Le Bretailleur, once said to me on such an occasion, and an opinion also of your peculiar merit, could have extorted such concessions; for he and all his family are, and have been time out of mind, MAVORTIA PECTORA, as Buchanan saith, a bold ...
— Waverley • Sir Walter Scott

... Time out of mind the piratical proas of the Malays, lurking among the low shaded coves and islets of Sumatra, have sallied out upon the vessels sailing through the straits, fiercely demanding tribute at the point of their spears. ...
— Moby Dick; or The Whale • Herman Melville

... obstinately set against him and his viands, and the new school being finished, the eating-room was closed. If there had been no other reason, sympathy with the Palfreys, that respectable family who had lived in the parish time out of mind, would have determined all well-to-do people to decline Freely's goods. Besides, he had absconded with his mother's guineas: who knew what else he had done, in Jamaica or elsewhere, before he came to Grimworth, worming himself into ...
— Brother Jacob • George Eliot

... accident happened to him, that, taken in connexion with the first, formed what newspaper folks call "a singular coincidence." A considerable portion of the town, or city, or whatever it may be, of Valparaiso, is built upon and among several high, rocky, precipitous cliffs, to which sailors, time out of mind, have given the names of fore, main, and mizen tops. It is, perhaps, another singular coincidence, that the name "main-royal," that belongs of right to the highest sail in a ship, is applied to the lowest part of said respectable sea-port. The "main-top" ...
— An Old Sailor's Yarns • Nathaniel Ames

... the hive, they meet together and make laws. And do we wonder, when the foundation of politics is in the letter only, at the miseries of states? Ought we not rather to admire the strength of the political bond? For cities have endured the worst of evils time out of mind; many cities have been shipwrecked, and some are like ships foundering, because their pilots are absolutely ignorant of the science ...
— Statesman • Plato

... certainly Fox, and it is possible that such a miracle happening before, the family may have gained their name as a soubriquet on that account. They were an ancient family, and have had their seat at Tangley Hall time out of mind. It is also true that there was a half-tame fox once upon a time chained up at Tangley Hall in the inner yard, and I have heard many speculative wiseacres in the public-houses turn that to great account—though they could not but admit that "there was ...
— Lady Into Fox • David Garnett

... phenomenon which seems to mock their intelligence, humbly to ponder the evidence—to investigate causes and ascertain results." In the present case the utility of the waters, if not for cooking or drinking then for other specific purposes, had been put to the proof time out of mind, in an empirical fashion; though it was not till the reign of the Good Duke Alfred that a series of classical experiments placed our knowledge of their medicinal properties ...
— South Wind • Norman Douglas

... Nose it will quickly appear, And your lordship, he said, will undoubtedly find, That the Nose has had spectacles always to wear, Which amounts to possession time out of mind. ...
— The Humourous Poetry of the English Language • James Parton

... spot; that his authority was supported by the police, and his sentence enforced by the municipality. He was a portly man, wore a three-cocked hat, and an old scarlet cloak, which had served the same purpose time out of mind. ...
— Travels through the South of France and the Interior of Provinces of Provence and Languedoc in the Years 1807 and 1808 • Lt-Col. Pinkney

... accommodation. This quarrel first began, as I have heard it affirmed by an old dweller in the neighbourhood, about a small spot of ground, lying and being upon one of the two tops of the hill Parnassus; the highest and largest of which had, it seems, been time out of mind in quiet possession of certain tenants, called the Ancients; and the other was held by the Moderns. But these disliking their present station, sent certain ambassadors to the Ancients, complaining of a great nuisance; how the height of ...
— The Battle of the Books - and Other Short Pieces • Jonathan Swift

... ultimo; lately &c. (newly) 123. retrospectively; ere now, before now, till now; hitherto, heretofore; no longer; once, once upon a time; from time immemorial, from prehistoric times; in the memory of man; time out of mind; already, yet, up to this time; ex post facto. Phr. time was; the time has been, the time hath been; you can't go home again; fuimus Troes [Lat][Vergil]; fruit Ilium [Vergil]; hoc erat in more majorum[Lat]; "O call back yesterday, ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... Mag. (for 1818, part ii. p. 218.[7]), the testimony of one is given who had for upwards of fifty years considered the two words as identical, and had heard them in his youth used indiscriminately by aged clergymen. It is notorious that in Ireland, time out of mind, tippets have been more generally worn than hoods in parish churches there. I am not sure (though I lay no stress on the conjecture) whether this may not have been in {337} consequence of the option apparently given by the Canons of wearing ...
— Notes and Queries, No. 179. Saturday, April 2, 1853. • Various

... fox-hunting squire and his commonplace worldly wife, and a thoughtless and reckless but not unkind man of the world. Here is a sketch of a commonplace old English vicar, such as has been familiar in the pages of novels and essays time out of mind: ...
— The International Monthly, Volume 3, No. 2, May, 1851 • Various

... this time, directed the Executive to cause a search through the government buildings, with a view to the discovery of old state papers and manuscripts, which, having been consigned, time out of mind, to neglect and oblivion, were known only as heaps of promiscuous lumber, strewed over the floors of damp cellars and unfrequented garrets. The careless and unappreciative spirit of the proper guardians of our archives in past years had suffered many precious folios and ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 6, No. 33, July, 1860 • Various

... pleasure, and more particularly pain, were subject to the ordinary rules of arithmetic, so that minor quantities, added together, might mount up to an indefinitely gigantic total. Poets and philosophers, time out of mind, have been heartbroken over the enormous mass of evil in the world, and have spoken as though animated nature were one great organism, with a brain in which every pang that afflicted each one of its innumerable members was piled up into a huge, pyramidal ...
— God and Mr. Wells - A Critical Examination of 'God the Invisible King' • William Archer

... relics once religiously preserved in the Kesselstadt collection at Mayence was a plaster mask, having at the back the year of Shakespeare's death. This relic had been in that collection time out of mind, and seems always to have been received as a cast from the "flying-mould" of Shakespeare's dead face. With this was a small oil-painting of a man crowned with bays, lying on a state bier; of which, by the kindness of Mr. J. Parker ...
— Shakespeare's Bones • C. M. Ingleby

... maind without vear or vavour, as the zaying is. 'T is the way of the Quicksets—we are no upstarts, nor vorreigners, nor have we any Jewish blood in our veins; we have lived in this here neighbourhood time out of mind, as you all know, and possess an estate of vive thousand clear, which we spend at whoam, among you, in old English hospitality. All my vorevathers have been parliament-men, and I can prove that ne'er a one o' um gave a zingle vote ...
— The Adventures of Sir Launcelot Greaves • Tobias Smollett

... friend, which he described to me just before he left Italy. "I saw last night an old palazzo of the Doria, six miles from here, upon the sea, which De la Rue urged Fletcher to take for us, when he was bent on that detestable villa Bagnerello; which villa the Genoese have hired, time out of mind, for one-fourth of what I paid, as they told him again and again before he made the agreement. This is one of the strangest old palaces in Italy, surrounded by beautiful woods of great trees (an immense rarity here) some miles in extent: and has upon the terrace ...
— The Life of Charles Dickens, Vol. I-III, Complete • John Forster

... were engaged in its examination. When I considered all these particulars, I doubted not for a moment that heat had been the agent in bringing to light, upon the parchment, the skull which I saw designed upon it. You are well aware that chemical preparations exist, and have existed time out of mind, by means of which it is possible to write upon either paper or vellum, so that the characters shall become visible only when subjected to the action of fire. Zaffre, digested in aqua regia, and diluted ...
— The Short-story • William Patterson Atkinson

... all his guards and tools of power about him, Is meditating new unheard-of hardships, Mocks his short arm,—and, quick as thought, escapes Where tyrants vex not, and the weary rest. Here the warm lover, leaving the cool shade, The tell-tale echo, and the babbling stream (Time out of mind the favourite seats of love), Fast by his gentle mistress lays him down, 510 Unblasted by foul tongue.—Here friends and foes Lie close; unmindful of their former feuds. The lawn-robed prelate and plain presbyter, Erewhile that stood aloof, as shy to meet, Familiar ...
— The Poetical Works of Beattie, Blair, and Falconer - With Lives, Critical Dissertations, and Explanatory Notes • Rev. George Gilfillan [Ed.]

... as I verily believe, nothing but real men, and their manners real manners, seen through a haze of centuries.... I do not mean that the tales date from any particular period, but that traces of all periods may be found in them—that various actors have played the same parts time out of mind, and that their manners and customs are all mixed together, and truly, though confusedly, represented—that giants and fairies and enchanted princes were men ... that tales are but garbled popular history, of a long journey through forests and wilds, inhabited by savages and wild ...
— Fians, Fairies and Picts • David MacRitchie

... he appointed as his stewards, were mightily taken with the notion. They had been engaged time out of mind, they said, in providing mirth and cheer for mortals below; and it was time that they should have a taste ...
— Story Hour Readings: Seventh Year • E.C. Hartwell

... The Ports had been seated at Islam time out of mind. Congreve had visited there, and his seat, that is the bench on which he sometimes sat, used to be shown. CROKER. On the way to Islam, Johnson told Boswell about the dedication of his Plan to Lord Chesterfield. ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 3 • Boswell, Edited by Birkbeck Hill

... be thankful, and me among the rest; for many a worse provided for, and less welcome down-lying has taken place, time out of mind, throughout broad Scotland. I say this with a warm heart, as I am grateful for all my mercies. To hundreds above hundreds such a catastrophe brings scarcely any joy at all; but it was far different with me, who had ...
— The Life of Mansie Wauch - Tailor in Dalkeith, written by himself • David Macbeth Moir

... so many stately structures, now in the hands of the clergy, which might be converted into play-houses, market-houses, exchanges, common dormitories, and other public edifices. I hope I shall be forgiven a hard word, if I call this a perfect cavil. I readily own there has been an old custom, time out of mind, for people to assemble in the churches every Sunday, and that shops are still frequently shut, in order, as it is conceived, to preserve the ancient practice, but how they can be a hindrance to business or pleasure it is hard to imagine. What ...
— History of English Humour, Vol. 2 (of 2) • Alfred Guy Kingan L'Estrange

... been an unlawful bawd time out of mind; but yet I will be content to be a lawful hangman. I would be glad to receive some ...
— Measure for Measure • William Shakespeare [Collins edition]

... twenty-fifth of March, which, as most people know to their cost, is, and has been time out of mind, one of those unpleasant epochs termed quarter-days. On this twenty-fifth of March, it was John Willet's pride annually to settle, in hard cash, his account with a certain vintner and distiller in the city of London; to give into whose hands ...
— Barnaby Rudge • Charles Dickens

... paint our great Duke," Mr. Addison went on, "not as a man, which no doubt he is, with weaknesses like the rest of us, but as a hero. 'Tis in a triumph, not a battle, that your humble servant is riding his sleek Pegasus. We college poets trot, you know, on very easy nags; it hath been, time out of mind, part of the poet's profession to celebrate the actions of heroes in verse, and to sing the deeds which you men of war perform. I must follow the rules of my art, and the composition of such a strain as this must be harmonious and ...
— The History of Henry Esmond, Esq. • W. M. Thackeray

... was the general state of things in Europe. As to political rights, the body of the people were all in Egyptian darkness. The yoke had been fixed and locked upon them in far distant ages, of which they had no knowledge; they had borne it, time out of mind, and their necks had became so callous and accustomed to its pressure, that it never entered into their imaginations ...
— Celebration in Baltimore of the Triumph of Liberty in France • William Wirt

... need not trouble yourselves, for there is no more waste ground. I dig what my father tilled; every one does the same, and all the land you see has been occupied time out of mind. ...
— Emile • Jean-Jacques Rousseau

... isolation. Cut off time out of mind from the rest of the world, he never underwent those crossings of blood and culture which so modified and on the whole promoted the growth of the old world nationalities. In his own way he worked out his own destiny, and what he won was his with a more than ordinary right of ownership. ...
— The Myths of the New World - A Treatise on the Symbolism and Mythology of the Red Race of America • Daniel G. Brinton

... hoping! She got it from her grandmother, who died at the age of a hundred and three, and sleeps in Coggeshall churchyard. She got it from her mother, who also died very old, and could give no other account of it than that it had been in the family time out of mind." ...
— Isopel Berners - The History of certain doings in a Staffordshire Dingle, July, 1825 • George Borrow

... if this be she, for she is ours." Here Sir Gervaise laughed heartily at his own humour, and all near him joined in, as a matter of course. "But la Minerve has been a frigate time out of mind. The Goddess of Wisdom has never been fool enough to get into a line of battle when she has had it in ...
— The Two Admirals • J. Fenimore Cooper



Words linked to "Time out of mind" :   past times, yesteryear, past



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