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Twaddle   /twˈɑdəl/   Listen
Twaddle

verb
1.
Speak (about unimportant matters) rapidly and incessantly.  Synonyms: blab, blabber, chatter, clack, gabble, gibber, maunder, palaver, piffle, prate, prattle, tattle, tittle-tattle.



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"Twaddle" Quotes from Famous Books



... came under the notice of any reader is found in a professed apology for the Scriptures, recently published, under the pompous and bombastic title of "COSMOGONY, OR THE MYSTERIES OF CREATION."—A volume of such puerile trash, such rubbish, twaddle, balderdash, and crazy drivelling[A] as this, was never before vomited from the press of any land, and beside it the "REVELATIONS" of Andrew Jackson Davis, the "Poughkeepsie Seer," rises to the lofty grandeur of the "Novum Organon,"—a sight ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 6, Issue 35, September, 1860 • Various

... "That twaddle I don't understand. . ." Ivan Dmitritch brought out in a hollow voice, and he sat down on ...
— The Horse-Stealers and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... investiture as K.C.B., and advises me to imitate him for my own interest, rather than Sir J. Davis, who was recalled. Davis, says Yeh, insisted on getting into the city, and Bonham gave up this demand. Hence his advice to me. All through the letter is sheer twaddle. ...
— Letters and Journals of James, Eighth Earl of Elgin • James, Eighth Earl of Elgin

... that our monopoly is gone or superseded by new sources of mechanical energy. We got rich by pursuing our own immediate advantage instinctively; that is, with a natural childish selfishness; and when any question of our justification arose, we found it easy to silence it with any sort of plausible twaddle (provided it flattered us, and did not imply any trouble or sacrifice) provided by our curates at L70 a year, or our journalists at a penny a line, or commercial moralists with axes to grind. In the end we became ...
— New York Times, Current History, Vol 1, Issue 1 - From the Beginning to March, 1915 With Index • Various

... awoke to the fact that he was beginning to give vent to a lot of twaddle, and speedily, pleading fatigue, she paid no further notice to him. This compelled Pao-y to at last be quiet and go to sleep. By the morrow, all recollection of the discussion ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book II • Cao Xueqin

... "My goodness, what utter twaddle, and what may all this nonsense have signified, pray? If it had any meaning at all!" said Mrs. Epanchin, cuttingly, after ...
— The Idiot • (AKA Feodor Dostoevsky) Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... forth, acquired an interest in Danyers's eyes. She was like a volume of unindexed and discursive memoirs, through which he patiently plodded in the hope of finding embedded amid layers of dusty twaddle some precious allusion to the subject of his thought. When, some months later, he brought out his first slim volume, in which the remodelled college essay on Rendle figured among a dozen, somewhat overstudied "appreciations," he offered a copy to Mrs. Memorall; who surprised him, the next ...
— The Greater Inclination • Edith Wharton

... said Murray, fidgeting. "She has been very patient and kind of an evening in listening to me, though I am afraid I have often bored her terribly with my long-winded twaddle about ornithology and botany." ...
— The Rajah of Dah • George Manville Fenn

... friends report them to do, I put them in the same category. The only good that I can see in the demonstration of the 'Truth of Spiritualism' is to furnish an additional argument against suicide. Better live a crossing-sweeper, than die and be made to talk twaddle by a 'medium' hired at ...
— Memories and Studies • William James

... I say to you; let an author of renown fill a book with twaddle, and if it is not praised by the critics, you may ...
— The Minister of Evil - The Secret History of Rasputin's Betrayal of Russia • William Le Queux

... and practice and all that; but I'm sure it is oceans better than half the sentimental twaddle we see in the papers, and I KNOW that some of those pieces ARE paid for, because I have a friend who is in a newspaper office, and he told me so. Yours are quaint and simple and some very original. I'm sure that ballad of the old house is lovely, ...
— A Garland for Girls • Louisa May Alcott

... belonging to them, and consequently of the conversation of lady politicians, made up as it is of these details and personalities. And the more interested I am in the thing itself, the more angry I am with the nonsense they talk about it, and had rather listen to the most humdrum domestic twaddle. Mind, I mean the regular hardened lady politicians who talk of nothing else, of whom I could name several, but ...
— Lady John Russell • Desmond MacCarthy and Agatha Russell

... talk," he said to himself—"it's sentimental jargon, precious twaddle—all this mysterious babble about occult quality and humanity and sympathy. If Jose Querida has the capacity of a chipmunk for mental agony, I've lost my bet ...
— The Common Law • Robert W. Chambers

... indifference. He did not expect a woman to give him a pension unconditionally, or without some little twaddle by way of drawback. He called on the lawyer, and sent in his name. He was received by the lawyer in person, and eyed very keenly. "I am directed to call here ...
— A Perilous Secret • Charles Reade

... VERE, I vow that you were not a flirt, The daughter of a hundred Earls Would not a single creature hurt. "Kind hearts are more than coronets," What abject twaddle, on my word; And then the joke is in the end,— We know they ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 101. October 3rd, 1891 • Various

... he said, then he settled back in his chair and looked hard at us. His eyes were as keen as frost; but they twinkled—just a little, as I have discovered they can and do twinkle if one isn't afraid to say right out what one means, without unnecessary fuss and twaddle. ...
— The Story of Wellesley • Florence Converse

... not! An Inca can do nothing. He is tied hand and foot. A constitutional monarch is openly called an India-rubber stamp. An emperor is a puppet. The Inca is not allowed to make a speech: he is compelled to take up a screed of flatulent twaddle written by some noodle of a minister and read it aloud. But look at the American President! He is the Allerhochst, if you like. No, madam, believe me, there is nothing like Democracy, American Democracy. Give the people voting papers: good long voting papers, American fashion; ...
— The Inca of Perusalem • George Bernard Shaw

... old themes, changed or unchanged, woven into the tissue; and to go hunting for these old themes, to try to recognise them whenever they crop up, is not only to lose one's enjoyment of the music, but to run a fair risk of misapprehending it altogether, and the drama as well. This jack-fool twaddle about there being not a single phrase in an opera which has not grown out of another is manifestly absurd—for out of what does the first one grow?—and utterly untrue. In every scene of Tristan an enormous amount of new material is added; it is ...
— Wagner • John F. Runciman

... bewildered by all the novelties he has seen, but without the slightest real addition to his previous knowledge of Spanish character and customs. Six months afterwards, the new work on Spain by Ensign Epaulet or Tedious Twaddle, Esquire, issues forth, borne on a mighty blast of puffery, from the laboratory ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine - Volume 57, No. 352, February 1845 • Various

... pages of similar twaddle, meant to show that the mayor of Amiens was a most tolerant prince, in that he had not ordered the destruction of every cross set up on ...
— France and the Republic - A Record of Things Seen and Learned in the French Provinces - During the 'Centennial' Year 1889 • William Henry Hurlbert

... denouncing bad work by the most illustrious hands and commending obscure merit. The "impudent literary cliques" who puffed each other's books; the feeble chirrupings of the bardlings who manufactured verses for the "Annuals;" and the twaddle of the "genial" incapables who praised them in flabby reviews—all these Poe exposed with ferocious honesty. Nor, though his writings are unmoral, can they be called in any sense immoral. His poetry is as pure in its unearthliness as Bryant's in ...
— Initial Studies in American Letters • Henry A. Beers

... lead. This I held up angrily before her, and (not without courage, for it is hard to deal with the darker powers) I recited to her slowly that familiar verse which the well-known Satyricus Empiricius was for ever using in his now classical attacks on the grammarians; and without any Alexandrian twaddle of accents I intoned to her—and so left her astounded to ...
— The Path to Rome • Hilaire Belloc

... people than you. There is no use whining about it.... No, I couldn't possibly. You must take your chance.... That's enough, sir. Nonsense! I have something more important to do than to listen to such twaddle." ...
— The Poison Belt • Arthur Conan Doyle

... have been somewhat hasty, asks a little time for reconsideration of her precise sentiment toward me, and feels meanwhile in honour bound to release me from our engagement! Yet if upon mature deliberation—eh, oh, yes! twaddle! and commonplace! and dashed, of course, with a jigger ...
— The Cords of Vanity • James Branch Cabell et al

... capitalize our own artistic assets, which we often allow to lie idle before we ever utilize them properly. The water front, Telegraph hill, the ocean shore, Sutro Heights, and Lincoln Park are all waiting to be developed in such a way as the Exposition suggests. The talk of cost is idle twaddle. If the Exposition, as an artistic investment, pays - and I see no reason whatever why it should not pay for itself - then we cannot do anything better than to invest our money wisely in other artistic improvements of a ...
— The Art of the Exposition • Eugen Neuhaus

... lived by sea-power, and peoples who, like the Russians and Chinese, have neither sea-power nor a sea-folk's blood, never use sea terms in their ordinary talk. They may dress up a landsman and put him on the stage to talk the same sort of twaddle that our own stage sailors talk—all about "shiver my timbers," "hitching his breeches," and "belaying the slack of your jaw." But they do not talk the real sea sense we have learnt from the handy man of whose strange life ...
— Flag and Fleet - How the British Navy Won the Freedom of the Seas • William Wood

... the wildest license; its love the essence of the lowest lust! Priapus—worshipping obscenity. Rant and rubbish. Linguistic silliness. Inhumanly insolent. Apotheosis of Sweat. Mouthings of a mountebank. Venomously malignant. Pretentious twaddle. Degraded helot of literature. His work, like a maniac's robe, bedizened with fluttering tags of a thousand colors. Roaming, like a drunken satyr, with inflamed blood, through every field of lascivious thought. Muck ...
— Walt Whitman Yesterday and Today • Henry Eduard Legler

... kindness, and many a pleasant evening I spent there with musical performances. But here, too, the old leaven of Oxford burst forth sometimes. Of course, we generally performed the music of Handel and other classical authors; Mendelssohn's compositions were still considered as mere twaddle by some of the old school. At one of these evenings, the old organist of New College, with his wooden leg, after sitting through a rehearsal of Mendelssohn's Hymn of Praise, which I was conducting at the pianoforte, walked up to me, as I thought, to thank me; but ...
— My Autobiography - A Fragment • F. Max Mueller

... Whigs, though wicked in intention, were simple and superficial dealers in big words. In the literary application the same sturdy common sense was opposed to the Pope tradition so far as that tradition opposed common sense. Conventional diction, pastorals, and twaddle about Nature belonged to the nonsensical side. He entirely sympathised with Crabbe's substitution of the real living brutish clown for the unreal swain of Arcadia; that is, for developing poetry by making it thoroughly realistic even at the cost ...
— English Literature and Society in the Eighteenth Century • Leslie Stephen

... him to hotel proprietors there might be something in it. Perhaps it helped a man into Parliament, Parliament still being a confused retrogressive corner in the world where lawyers and suchlike sheltered themselves from the onslaughts of common-sense behind a fog of Latin and Greek and twaddle and tosh; but I wasn't the sort to go into Parliament, unless I meant to be a lawyer. Did I mean to be a lawyer? It cost no end of money, and was full of uncertainties, and there were no judges nor great solicitors among my relations. "Young chaps think they get on by themselves," said my ...
— The New Machiavelli • Herbert George Wells

... purport of these messages, which were written rather quickly, and without perceptible thought or hesitation, changing from one handwriting to another without the least apparent difficulty, was in some instances the veriest twaddle, while others contained tolerably good sense, even in language rather above the Medium, unless appearances were misleading, for she looked the embodiment of ignorant simplicity, and spoke ...
— Preliminary Report of the Commission Appointed by the University • The Seybert Commission

... sure about that. I know many eminent saints in the church who will eat lobster salad for supper, and then send for the doctor and minister before morning. There is a precious twaddle about 'mysterious Providence.' Providence isn't half so mysterious as people make out. The doctor is expected to look serious and sympathetic, and call their law-breaking and its penalty by some outlandish Latin name that no one can understand. I give 'em the square truth, and tell 'em ...
— Barriers Burned Away • E. P. Roe

... of his ostensibly deep consideration of her request, a retreat in good order. She was, for herself, to the last point of her guileless fatuity, Amy Evans and an asker for "lifts," a conceiver of twaddle both in herself and in him; or at least, so far as she fell short of all this platitude, it was no fault of the really affecting folly of her attempt to become a mere magazine mortal after the only fashion she had made out, to the intensification of her self-complacency, ...
— The Finer Grain • Henry James

... Recollections, for there are few men who have had the opportunities of seeing so much of life and character as he has, and still fewer who at an advanced age could write an Autobiography in which we have opinions without twaddle, gossip without malice, and stories not marred in ...
— Records of a Girlhood • Frances Anne Kemble

... of on your enemy; and you would be here eighteen months instead of eight or ten days. No, Sir Charles, you can't mix champagne and ditch-water; you can't make Invention row in a boat with Antique Twaddle, and you mustn't ask me to fight your battle with a blunt knife, when I have got a sharp knife ...
— A Terrible Temptation - A Story of To-Day • Charles Reade

... he himself went down to see Cardinal Begin. For an Orangeman like Hughes that was a desperate measure. He got what he expected—cynicism. Begin afterwards issued a letter to the press in which he tried to set the clergy above the law of conscription. No doubt the Cardinal came at Hughes with the twaddle invented by the Nationalists and later adopted by Laurier, about enforcing the Militia Act which provided ...
— The Masques of Ottawa • Domino

... the Peace Conference, as it is called, I think the merest twaddle—and I use the term with entire respect to the members—the merest twaddle that ever was presented to a thinking people. The proposition of the Senator from Kentucky has some sense in it. If he chooses to desert his own, I ...
— A Report of the Debates and Proceedings in the Secret Sessions of the Conference Convention • Lucius Eugene Chittenden

... Captain, with a strident laugh; "and where did you pick up your sense of right, madam, I should like to know? From what Methodist parson's hypocritical twaddle have you learnt to lay down the law to your poor old father about the sense of right? 'Honour your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land,' miss, that's what your Bible teaches you; but the Bible has gone out of fashion, I dare say, since I was a young man; ...
— Charlotte's Inheritance • M. E. Braddon

... father. Under these impressions we shrank from criticising a lady's novel: her English might be faulty, but we said to ourselves her motives are irreproachable; her imagination may be uninventive, but her patience is untiring. Empty writing was excused by an empty stomach, and twaddle was consecrated by tears. But no! This theory of ours, like many other pretty theories, has had to give way before observation. Women's silly novels, we are now convinced, are written under totally different ...
— The Essays of "George Eliot" - Complete • George Eliot

... positively, "call them boys; to call them young men is all bosh; we shall have 'young gentlemen' next, which is awful twaddle." ...
— Julian Home • Dean Frederic W. Farrar

... Rebecca, angrily, "ef I can hev the pleasure o' bein' rid o' you, Copernicus Droop, it'll be cheap at the price—but the's no sech luck. Ef you think ye can fool us any more with yer twaddle 'bout cuttin' meridians, ye're ...
— The Panchronicon • Harold Steele Mackaye

... said Kenrick, laughing; "cease this weak, washy, everlasting flood of twaddle, and tell us whether ...
— St. Winifred's - The World of School • Frederic W. Farrar

... wrong in it, but there were a great many vulgar suggestions and unpleasant innuendoes. As a dramatic critic said in my hearing a day or two later, when discussing the popular entertainments of London, 'Most of these shows consist of vulgar, brainless twaddle.' Still, the audience laughed and cheered, and when the curtain finally fell, there was a good deal of applause. Certainly the entertainment would be a great contrast to the experiences which the lads who were home on leave had been going through. But as I reflect ...
— "The Pomp of Yesterday" • Joseph Hocking

... and helplessly, childishly stupid as to any literary merits,—a mere mass of gossip and twaddle; but after all, when one remembers the taste of the thousands of circulating-library readers, it must not be considered the less likely to be widely read on that account. It is only once in a century that a writer of real genius has the art to tell his story so as to take both the cultivated ...
— Lady Byron Vindicated • Harriet Beecher Stowe

... life without you, I can surely get through this twaddle: 'ri tum ti tum ti tum ti tum tiddy iddy.'" Lucy started from her seat, leaving David plowing solo. She started from her seat and stood a moment, looking like an angel stung by vipers. Her eye went all round the room in one moment in search of some one ...
— Love Me Little, Love Me Long • Charles Reade

... Moss.—Have the fire scene take place in the first act, and let all the dramatis personae perish in the flames. Thus shall the audience be spared the vulgar profanity of STODDART'S "Comic Villain," the absurdity of WALLACK'S "Coram," the twaddle of HIELD'S "Virtuous Banker," and the impossible imbecility of FISHER'S "Unprincipled Clerk." Miss GERMON in trowsers, and Miss HENRIQUES in tears, are very nice; but they do not quite redeem the wretchedness of the play. The sooner Mr. Moss gives up his present flame and returns to his ...
— Punchinello, Vol. 1, No. 2, April 9, 1870 • Various

... arabs, for the want of education, ambition, animation, and push, are indulging in practices that are fast working their own destruction and those they are brought into contact with, and a great deal of this may lay at the door of flattery, twaddle, ...
— Gipsy Life - being an account of our Gipsies and their children • George Smith

... that, my reader, as a specimen of embittered eloquence and nervous pith? It is something to read massive and energetic sense, in days wherein mystical twaddle, and subtlety which hopelessly defies all logic, are sometimes thought extremely fine, if they are set out in a style which is ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 8, No. 48, October, 1861 • Various

... is ended; to wish existence, too, had ceased; and so to sit down, an aching hollow, and take a part and sham an interest in twaddle to please others; such are woman's feats. How like nothing at all ...
— White Lies • Charles Reade

... long an hour is, so that people would think that you were completely mad. Stop this twaddle and let us elders talk together.—Listen, my dear Jeppe Berg! Do you think it is wise for these two young people to marry before he ...
— Comedies • Ludvig Holberg

... connecting it however with her right-hand neighbour; and while I strained my ear for his reply I heard him, to my stupefaction, call back gaily, with his mouth full of bread: "Oh, it's all right—it's the usual twaddle!" ...
— Embarrassments • Henry James

... were a little too strong, too violent against the Bill,' because Harrowby had declared that he felt the same objection to the measure he had felt before. Sefton was outrageous, talked a vast deal of amusing nonsense, 'that he had never heard such twaddle,' 'but that the success was complete, and he looked on Harrowby and Wharncliffe as the two most enviable men in the kingdom.' I have no doubt that all the ultras will be deeply mortified at the moderation of Lord Grey and of the Duke of Wellington, and ...
— The Greville Memoirs - A Journal of the Reigns of King George IV and King William IV, Vol. II • Charles C. F. Greville

... which they misuse terribly. We put our man into a pulpit, and we virtually tell him 'Now, you may stand there and talk to us for half-an-hour. We won't interrupt you by so much as a word! You shall have it all your own way!' And what does he give us in return? Shallow twaddle, that, if it were addressed to you over a dinner-table, you would think 'Does the man take me ...
— Sylvie and Bruno • Lewis Carroll

... question, not me," he replied. "You—Sir Julien Portel, caricatured as the best-dressed man in the House of Commons, member of the most fashionable clubs, brilliant debater, successful politician, future Prime Minister, and all that sort of twaddle. You were living too far up in the clouds, my friend, to come down here. You see, I am not offering you much sympathy, Julien. I don't think you need it. You were soaring up to the skies just because of your gifts and your position and ...
— The Mischief Maker • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... wants me to 'do' a series on famous English bishops," he reported, humbly. "I had meant to refuse, because it would all have to be dull High-Church twaddle. And the English Gentleman wants some rather outrageous lying done in defense of the Corn Laws. You would not despise me too much—would you, Mildred?—if I undertook it now. I really have no choice. And there is plenty of hackwork of that sort available to keep us going ...
— The Certain Hour • James Branch Cabell

... nations: we marvel, we wonder at them exceedingly. Greece we shall omit, because to talk of the arts, and Phidias, and Pericles, and 'all that,' is the surest way yet discovered by man for tempting a vindictive succession of kicks. Exposed to the world, no author of such twaddle could long evade assassination. But Rome is entitled to some separate notice, even after all that has been written about her. And the more so in this case, because Mr. Finlay has scarcely done her justice. He says: 'The Romans were a tribe of warriors. All their institutions, even those relating ...
— The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. II (2 vols) • Thomas De Quincey

... had said something much cleverer than she could possibly realize. "That's a fact," admitted he. "It was simply supreme common-sense. What a world for twaddle it is when common-sense makes us sit up and stare.... But it's none the less true that you're ...
— The Fashionable Adventures of Joshua Craig • David Graham Phillips

... Instead of twaddle and boredom round somebody or other's samovar, I am going to have honest talk under the chaperonage of an English teapot—my own teapot, which I carry everywhere. But don't be afraid; I shall not give you ...
— The Crown of Life • George Gissing

... attempt is to bring us up on tracts made up of thin exhortations and goodish maxims. A nerveless treatise on commerce or science in that style would be crumpled up by the first merchant and thrown into his waste-basket. Religious twaddle is of no more use than worldly twaddle. If a man has nothing to say, he had better keep his pen wiped and his tongue still. There needs an infusion of strong Anglo-Saxon into religious literature, and a brawnier manliness and more impatience with insipidity, ...
— Around The Tea-Table • T. De Witt Talmage

... 'poetical' trick of confusedly heaping words together regardless of meaning, should so bewilder men and deprive them of all wise and sober judgment! By my faith! ... I would as soon listen to the gabble of geese in a farmyard as to the silly glibness of such inflated twaddle, such mawkish sentiment, such ...
— Ardath - The Story of a Dead Self • Marie Corelli

... and lifted their heads wearily, and gazed at each other wistfully, dreamily, dazed; then presently began to twaddle to each other in a wandering and childish way. At intervals they lapsed into silences, leaving a sentence unfinished, seemingly either unaware of it or losing their way. Sometimes, when they woke out of these silences they had a dim and transient consciousness that ...
— The $30,000 Bequest and Other Stories • Mark Twain

... for when he breathed he was a man,"—even while through the instant the tide of romance will be setting quite otherwhither, with their condonation. For in all the best approved romances the more sumptuous persons of antiquity are very guilty of twaddle on at least one printed page in ten, and nobody remonstrates; and here is John Bulmer, too, lugged from ...
— Gallantry - Dizain des Fetes Galantes • James Branch Cabell

... attentive to all that was said, though he had heard the same stories every night for twenty years, and upon all occasions winked oracularly to his nephew to particularly mind what passed. About ten the innocent twaddle closed by a man coming in with a lantern to light home old Bickerstaff. They were simple and happy times that Steele describes with such kindly humour; and the London of his days must have been full of ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... names fanciful or grotesque, such as The Ardent, The Illuminated, The Unconquered, The Intrepid, or The Dissonant, The Sterile, The Insipid, The Obtuse, The Astray, The Stunned, and they were all devoted to one purpose, namely, the production and the perpetuation of twaddle. It is prodigious to think of the incessant wash of slip-slop which they poured out in verse; of the grave disputations they held upon the most trivial questions; of the inane formalities of their sessions. At the meetings of a famous academy in Milan, they ...
— Modern Italian Poets • W. D. Howells

... because I knew I couldn't get what I wanted without marrying her—still—I somehow think I'd made a kind of a start that time—only I got pulled up too short. I dare say I quite deserved it. That's no way of liking a woman. When you do really, you know all the rest's been half twaddle and half greed. Your father and mother are all right—so are mine really, though they do blow each other's heads off—still, there's something there—you ...
— The Dark Tower • Phyllis Bottome

... and laughed with joy at the nonsense. In her prosaic world no one but Adam Ladd played the game and answered the fool according to his folly. Nobody else talked delicious fairy-story twaddle ...
— New Chronicles of Rebecca • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... representative of cat-hood in the abstract, which was a most important element in the economy of the universe. It was when Aunt Charlotte stigmatised these philosophical reflections as a pack of impertinent twaddle that Austin had had the audacity to say that she was like ...
— Austin and His Friends • Frederic H. Balfour

... prevent or attempt to prevent the owner of a garden from shooting the bullfinches or blackbirds and so on that steal his fruit, or destroy his buds, is absurd. It is equally absurd to fine—what twaddle!—a lad for taking a bird's egg. The only point upon which I am fully clear is that the birdcatcher who takes birds on land not his own or in his occupation, on public property, as roads, wastes, commons, and so forth, ought to be rigidly put down. But as for the small birds as ...
— Nature Near London • Richard Jefferies

... inconsolable. Hume may have thrown off Mr. Boyle's "principles of religion," but he was none the less a very honest man, perfectly open and candid, and the last person to use ambiguous phraseology, among his friends; unless, indeed, he saw no other way of putting a stop to the intrusion of unmannerly twaddle amongst the bitter-sweet memories stirred in his affectionate nature by so heavy ...
— Hume - (English Men of Letters Series) • T.H. Huxley

... some men are depressed by a helpless baby because they foresee, imaginatively, the poor little creature's life and all possible troubles before it. When I watch Jimmy in house, rather naughty perhaps, or when I hear Bessie, fresh from the twaddle that they put into her head at school, saying, "If Dad'd earn more money, mother, us could hae a shop an' he could buy me a pi-anno;" or when, as I am out and about with the boats, a grubby small hand is suddenly slipped into mine and a joyful chirping voice says, "What be yu 'bout?"—then, and ...
— A Poor Man's House • Stephen Sydney Reynolds

... hot summer wore away, and to Rosalie it was the longest that she ever had experienced. She was tired of the ceaseless twaddle of Tinkletown, its flow of "missions," "sociables," "buggy-horses," "George Rawlin's new dress-suit," "harvesting," and "politics"—for even the children talked politics. Nor did the assiduous attentions of the village young men possess the power to shorten the days for her—and they certainly ...
— The Daughter of Anderson Crow • George Barr McCutcheon

... to the waterhole, it's cool there, and better fun than listening to an old woman's twaddle. The sun's down now. ...
— The Moving Finger • Mary Gaunt

... mighty moment when Clemens was building his engines of war for the destruction of Christian Science, which superstition nobody, and he least of all, expected to destroy. It would not be easy to say whether in his talk of it his disgust for the illiterate twaddle of Mrs. Eddy's book, or his admiration of her genius for organization was the greater. He believed that as a religious machine the Christian Science Church was as perfect as the Roman Church and destined to be, more formidable in its control of the minds of men. He looked for its ...
— Henry James, Jr. • William Dean Howells

... were times, perhaps, when I was a trifle stunned by all that grand calm beauty, the silence, the solitude, the awfulness of it all; but I have hardly tune to feel the thrill when I came bump up against a party of tourists, English or American, all talking the same twaddle, and all patronising the scenery. That took the charm out of the landscape somehow, and I coiled up, as the Yankees say. And now you want me to go into second-hand raptures, and repeat my emotions, as if I were writing a tourist's ...
— Vixen, Volume I. • M. E. Braddon

... portraiture in general, the public may, without injury to Art or history, employ the painters who make the prettiest pictures of them; it doesn't matter to the future, if Mr. Jenkins, or even the Hon. Mr. Twaddle, has employed the promising Mr. Mahlstock to perpetuate him with a hundred transitory and borrowed graces,—if the talented young litterateur, Mr. Simeah, has been found by his limner to resemble Lord Byron amazingly, and ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 3, No. 19, May, 1859 • Various

... undramatic rigmarole of words. The man who could conceive and write the character of Elspeth of the Craigburnfoot, as Scott has conceived and written it, had not only splendid romantic, but splendid tragic gifts. How comes it, then, that he could so often fob us off with languid, inarticulate twaddle? ...
— Memories and Portraits • Robert Louis Stevenson

... manner so familiar that it must have been extremely nauseating to the cultured young women. The three were standing under the electric light at the corner, and the young women instead of appearing annoyed at the heathen's twaddle, seemed to be highly amused. Only the greatest exercise of self-restraint kept Mr. Hamshaw from kicking Sago into the middle ...
— Her Weight in Gold • George Barr McCutcheon

... the Flying Dutchman comes in, and the storm music rages once more. It is woven into Vanderdecken's magnificent scena (surely the greatest opera scena written up to the year 1842); and then disappears. In its place we get pages of (for Wagner) wearisome twaddle. The reason is obvious. For the purpose of explaining the subsequent movement of the drama there is a lot of conversation which Weber, in the Singspiel, would have left to be spoken, and Mozart would have set to ...
— Richard Wagner - Composer of Operas • John F. Runciman

... of the mind interferes with a woman's moral, sentimental, or motherly qualities is foolish twaddle. ...
— Editorials from the Hearst Newspapers • Arthur Brisbane

... leave misfortune behind, as I understand it. Just coincidence; but you couldn't drive that into an Oriental skull. This is what makes the study of precious stones so interesting. There is always some enchantment, some evil spell. To handle the drums is to invite a minor accident. Call it twaddle; probably is; and yet I have reason to believe that ...
— The Drums Of Jeopardy • Harold MacGrath

... toast was drunk the company braced themselves to the mental work of the afternoon, and although, as a matter of course, a good deal of twaddle was spoken, there was also much that threw light on the subject of ocean telegraphy. One of the leading merchants said, in his opening remarks: "Few of those present, I daresay, are really familiar with the history of ...
— The Battery and the Boiler - Adventures in Laying of Submarine Electric Cables • R.M. Ballantyne

... supervision was exercised. The so-called Medical Staff looked on, and puffed their cigarettes and talked under their eye-glasses—the fools, the idle, empty-headed noodles. And whilst they smoked and talked twaddle, the grim, gaunt Shadow of Death chuckled in the watches of the night, thinking of the harvest that was ...
— Campaign Pictures of the War in South Africa (1899-1900) - Letters from the Front • A. G. Hales

... an original and truly powerful mind never deals in anecdotes, unless it be for the purpose of illustrating some general principle. Women and weak men are all addicted to the vice. If a person of this description begins to annoy a company with his or her twaddle, the only cure for it is to affect deafness—a very convenient ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, No. 583 - Volume 20, Number 583, Saturday, December 29, 1832 • Various

... intellectually keen men than they should learn from perfectly respectable men, or perfectly orthodox men, or perfectly nice men. The vital thing to consider about your son's schoolmaster is whether he talked lifeless twaddle yesterday by way of a lesson, and not whether he loved unwisely or was born of poor parents, or was seen wearing a frock-coat in combination with a bowler, or confessed he doubted the Apostles' Creed, or called himself a ...
— An Englishman Looks at the World • H. G. Wells

... the base lie. Think of believing such twaddle. At first I did not trouble to deny the statement; then, as it was repeated again and again, I began ...
— Private Peat • Harold R. Peat

... asked me all about you heretics, and he told me you were all going to—be burned up, as soon as you died; for the Inquisition couldn't do it for you in these degenerate days. After a great deal more twaddle like this, I asked him why you heretics all had such hard names, that we others never could speak them? Then he looked mysterious, so! [here Miss Rita diabolically winked one eye,] and said he: 'I will tell you, per Bacco! hush, it's because they are so abominably wicked, never give any thing ...
— Continental Monthly, Vol. II. July, 1862. No. 1. • Various

... court' about it till late on Saturday, the day of adjournment. He adjourned for supper with nothing left but this case to dispose of. After supper he heard our twaddle for nearly an hour, and then made this ...
— Lincoln's Yarns and Stories • Alexander K. McClure

... looking on these torsos of the haberdasher, one is not brought to thoughts of sad mortality. Their joy is so exultant. And all the things that they hold dear—canes, gloves, silk hats, and the newer garments on which fashion makes its twaddle—are within reach of their armless sleeves. Had they fingers they would be smoothing themselves before the glass. Their unbodied heads, wherever they may be, are still smiling on the world, despite their divorcement. Their tongues are still ready with a jest, their ...
— There's Pippins And Cheese To Come • Charles S. Brooks

... ridicule of Pamela, for which work one can understand the hearty contempt and antipathy which such an athletic and boisterous genius as Fielding's must have entertained. He couldn't do otherwise than laugh at the puny Cockney bookseller, pouring out endless volumes of sentimental twaddle, and hold him up to scorn as a moll-coddle and a milksop. His genius had been nursed on sack-posset, and not on dishes of tea. His muse had sung the loudest in tavern choruses, had seen the daylight streaming ...
— Henry Esmond; The English Humourists; The Four Georges • William Makepeace Thackeray

... life. The earth was made for man. One has said "there is nothing great in the world but man; and there is nothing great in man but his soul." With this in view, how absurd to talk about "fixed laws" and "unchangeable order," in a way to keep man in his trouble from God. It is all the twaddle of the conceit of man setting himself up to judge and limit his maker. "To whom then will ye liken Me, or shall I be equal? saith the Holy One." The Creator is greater than his creation; the law giver is supreme ...
— The Wonders of Prayer - A Record of Well Authenticated and Wonderful Answers to Prayer • Various

... Cockayne," said his wife, "this Mr. Karr, whose book about the garden—twaddle, I call it—you used to think so very fine and poetic, is just a market-gardener and nothing more. He is positively ...
— The Cockaynes in Paris - 'Gone abroad' • Blanchard Jerrold

... in Wordsworth's case, on the other hand, is that his contemplative tendencies not only coexisted with, but were implicated with, the most precise and vivid apprehension of small realities. There was no proportion in his mind; and vaticination and twaddle rolled off his eloquent tongue as chance would have it. At one time he would discourse like a seer, on the slightest instigation, by the hour together; and next, he would hold forth with equal solemnity, on the pettiest matter of ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 7, No. 43, May, 1861 • Various

... a doctor, old boy,' he said; 'all that about thought-transference is just simply twaddle. You've been over-working. Take a holiday. ...
— The Story of the Amulet • E. Nesbit

... (to take an instance which all the world knows) form a much larger body in our language than is commonly supposed; it is said that a number of our raciest, most idiomatic, popular words—for example, bam, kick, whop, twaddle, fudge, hitch, muggy,—are Celtic. These assertions require to be carefully examined, and it by no means follows that because an English word is found in Celtic, therefore we get it from thence; but they ...
— Celtic Literature • Matthew Arnold

... again interrupted by the grandfather. "I won't listen to any more of this twaddle. Benevolent, bah! He or she or it or them is or are just plain exploiting us! Taking our mineral resources away—I've seen 'em loading ore on ...
— The Blue Tower • Evelyn E. Smith

... that he meant this melodramatic twaddle. It did not seem twaddle or melodramatic to her—or, for that matter, to him. She clasped him more closely. "What's the matter, dear?" she asked, ...
— Susan Lenox: Her Fall and Rise • David Graham Phillips

... daughter should have seen it all, but such infamous creatures as Raeburn had no business to have daughters. No doubt she would stand it very well anything, you know, for a little notoriety. Such people lived for notoriety. Of course the papers had put in a lot of twaddle that he had said on his death bed 'always had tried to work entirely for the good of humanity,' and that sort of nonsense. This coffee ice is excellent. Let me get you another," after which the subject would be dropped, and the speakers would return to the ball room to improve ...
— We Two • Edna Lyall

... possible to push altruism too far, and for Margaret, at her age and with her attractions, to go fooling around with medicine, with the mistaken idea that she was benefiting humanity, was nothing more or leas than damned twaddle. If she wanted to do something why not take up her music seriously. .. ...
— Mufti • H. C. (Herman Cyril) McNeile

... marsupial martyr Is based upon an ancient nursery model; But he will find that he has caught a Tartar, Who hints that Punch is talking heartless twaddle. ...
— Punch or the London Charivari, Vol. 104, May 27, 1893 • Various

... women slovenly or the whole family was just naturally vicious. Ignorance may excuse some of this but not all of it. Perhaps I'm not what you'd call sympathetic but I've heard a lot of men talk about these people in a way that sounds to me like twaddle. I never ran across a family down here in such misery as that which Steve Bonnington's wife endured ...
— One Way Out - A Middle-class New-Englander Emigrates to America • William Carleton

... evil and imperfection in the world. He notes the weakness and failures of the best intentioned, takes cognizance of the low motives that so often dominate, and bases his conclusions on them. He spurns the idealistic twaddle of those who, he says, are guided by their hopes rather than by ordinary good sense, and fancies himself a practical man. He ...
— Hidden from the Prudent - The 7th William Penn Lecture, May 8, 1921 • Paul Jones

... thoughts could be called valuable, for my habit is to lie in bed and wonder vaguely what time it is, and if you start the day in that way and write it solemnly on paper you may just as well keep a diary of what you had for luncheon and where you had tea and all that kind of twaddle, which people write because blotting paper is provided on the opposite page. But on the morning following my conversation with Ward I woke up with the sort of feeling which ought to have been of value to some one, because it was such ...
— Godfrey Marten, Undergraduate • Charles Turley

... and sombre, biting his pen and wondering what was meant by the "rewards" of literature, he generally ended by tossing away the composition deflowered by Mr. Locket and trying his hand at the sort of twaddle that Mrs. Ryves might be able to set to music. Success in these experiments wouldn't be a reward of literature, but it might very well become a labour of love. The experiments would be pleasant enough for him if they were pleasant for his inscrutable neighbour. That was the way he thought of ...
— Sir Dominick Ferrand • Henry James

... wise and thoughtful words. Young as you are, you are nevertheless, so far as the true perception of art is concerned, a long way ahead of many of our old and much vaunted masters, who have a good deal of stupid foolish twaddle about their painting, but never get at the true root of the matter. Body alive, man! When you were talking about my pictures, I then began to understand myself for the first time, I believe; and because you do not imitate my style,—do not, like a good many others, ...
— Weird Tales. Vol. I • E. T. A. Hoffmann

... never believed any of that twaddle. Only, I've got a sore head to-day. If you knew Nora as well as I do, ...
— The Place of Honeymoons • Harold MacGrath

... Moss.—Have the fire scene take place in the first act, and let all the dramatis personae perish in the flames. Thus shall the audience be spared the vulgar profanity of STODDART'S "Comic Villain," the absurdity of WALLACK'S "Coram," the twaddle of HIELD'S "Virtuous Banker," and the impossible imbecility of FISHER'S "Unprincipled Clerk." Miss GERMON in trowsers, and Miss HENRIQUES in tears, are very nice; but they do not quite redeem the wretchedness of the play. The sooner Mr. Moss gives up his present flame and returns to his early ...
— Punchinello, Vol. 1, No. 2, April 9, 1870 • Various

... (ASCII 1111110, ''). Also called 'squiggle', 'sqiggle' (sic — pronounced /skig'l/), and 'twaddle', but twiddle is the most common term. 2. A small and insignificant change to a program. Usually fixes one bug and generates several new ones (see also {shotgun debugging}). 3. /vt./ To change something in a small way. ...
— The Jargon File, Version 4.0.0

... proceed to show how the universe of Astral Light may be considered under the symbol of an Icosahedron. I shall only state that this conception of the Aryan philosophers is not to be looked upon as mere "theological twaddle" or as the outcome of wild fancy. The real significance of the conception in question can, I believe, be explained by reference to the psychology and the physical science of the ancients. But I must stop here and proceed to consider the meaning ...
— Five Years Of Theosophy • Various

... starch, or crinoline, or even the protection of pleats and gathers; and insult good, sound, wholesome common sense with the sickening affectations they are pleased to call 'aesthetics.' Don't waste your time, and dilute your own mind by quoting the silly twaddle of a poor girl who was turned loose too early on society, who falls on her knees in ecstasies before a hideous broken-nose tea-pot from some filthy hovel in Japan; and who would not dare to admire the loveliest bit of Oiron pottery, or precious old Chelsea claret-colored china in ...
— At the Mercy of Tiberius • August Evans Wilson

... opinions and liable to be swayed in any course. When he was at Flower De Hundred, living in the atmosphere of liberalists and republicans, he was one of the most outspoken of all. He would strut for hours before any one who would listen to his senseless twaddle and would harangue and discourse on the ...
— The Real America in Romance, Volume 6; A Century Too Soon (A Story - of Bacon's Rebellion) • John R. Musick

... true character of note-writing—how compressed and unrambling and direct it ought to be, and illustrate by the villainous twaddle ...
— The Posthumous Works of Thomas De Quincey, Vol. 1 (2 vols) • Thomas De Quincey

... English critics have consigned to me The plays of Ibsen, Maeterlinck, and Shaw, And Wilde's Salome, none has ever reached me. Back to their native land they must have gone, Or else you have them here in Germany. Only to me come down real British plays, The mid-Victorian twaddle, the false gems Which on the stretched forefinger of oblivion Glitter a moment, and ...
— Masques & Phases • Robert Ross

... gave our attention to the reading of some curious letters, said to have been written by two Persians of distinction then traveling in Europe, which were being published anonymously in Paris. At first, I could not bring myself to listen to such twaddle, dubiously moral, which, under the guise of light, small talk, struck at the foundations of government, religious beliefs, and all which I had before held sacred. Listening only to contradict, I grew interested in spite of myself, and only ...
— The Black Wolf's Breed - A Story of France in the Old World and the New, happening - in the Reign of Louis XIV • Harris Dickson

... he spoilt his elegant talents in writing German and Italian twaddle with all the rawness of a Yankee. He ought never to have left America, at least in literature; there was an uncontested and glorious field for him. He should have been managing director of the Hudson Bay Company, and lived all his life ...
— Vivian Grey • The Earl of Beaconsfield

... the likeness, and knew it depended on the features, and that, if I could copy the features exactly, the likeness would follow just as surely as the blood follows the knife. I found early that all the talk about catching the expression was mere twaddle; the expression would take care of itself if ...
— Great Fortunes, and How They Were Made • James D. McCabe, Jr.

... be taken that] it be publicly preached to the people that the Mass as men's twaddle [commentitious affair or human figment] can be omitted without sin, and that no one will be condemned who does not observe it, but that he can be saved in a better way without the Mass. I wager [Thus it will come to pass] ...
— The Smalcald Articles • Martin Luther

... Lent, and Markel would not fast, he was rude and laughed at it. "That's all silly twaddle, and there is no God," he said, horrifying my mother, the servants, and me too. For though I was only nine, I too was aghast at hearing such words. We had four servants, all serfs. I remember my mother selling one of the four, the cook Afimya, who was lame and elderly, for sixty paper roubles, ...
— The Brothers Karamazov • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... across the street. My friend shot the face off of your poor tool last night. I do not care to repeat the tragedy. I shall not strike you here and now, because the act might mean my arrest and detention on no one knows what sort of a trumped-up charge. You need not bother me with any silly twaddle about swords and pistols I shall pay no attention to it. Ordinarily Americans do not delay actual combat. We usually fight it out on the spot and the best man wins. I will, however, give you the chance to deliberate over my proposition to settle our ...
— Castle Craneycrow • George Barr McCutcheon

... literary gift, but it was new to Miss Winchelsea to find herself deploring the want of gifts in a friend. That letter was even criticised aloud in the safe solitude of Miss Winchelsea's study, and her criticism, spoken with great bitterness, was "Twaddle!" It was full of just the things Miss Winchelsea's letter had been full of, particulars of the school. And of Mr. Snooks, only this much: "I have had a letter from Mr. Snooks, and he has been over to see me on two Saturday afternoons running. ...
— Twelve Stories and a Dream • H. G. Wells

... overwhelming desire to make Francis stop this maddening twaddle; also the events of the morning were beginning to take on an air of reality, and as this grew he felt the need of sympathy of some kind. Francis might not be able to give him anything that was of any use, but it would do no harm to see if his ...
— Michael • E. F. Benson

... to the half-wise, twaddle; when you talk to the ignorant, brag; when you talk to the sagacious, look very humble, ...
— Paul Clifford, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... had a hovel, Twiddle had a palace; Twaddle said: "I'll grovel Or he'll think I bear him malice"— A sentiment as novel As a ...
— The Devil's Dictionary • Ambrose Bierce

... foreseen the answer. "Not even the worst twaddle about my book?" he suggested lightly, ...
— Tales Of Men And Ghosts • Edith Wharton



Words linked to "Twaddle" :   humbug, blither, nonsensicality, blather, cant, verbalise, smatter, bilgewater, babble, blab, nonsense, argot, clack, talk, hokum, patois, mouth, jargon, lingo, bunk, vernacular, blether, verbalize, speak, slang, meaninglessness, utter



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