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




Fretful   Listen
adjective
Fretful  adj.  Disposed to fret; ill-humored; peevish; angry; in a state of vexation; as, a fretful temper.
Synonyms: Peevish; ill-humored; ill-natured; irritable; waspish; captious; petulant; splenetic; spleeny; passionate; angry. Fretful, Peevish, Cross. These words all indicate an unamiable working and expression of temper. Peevish marks more especially the inward spirit: a peevish man is always ready to find fault. Fretful points rather to the outward act, and marks a complaining impatience: sickly children are apt to be fretful. Crossness is peevishness mingled with vexation or anger.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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

Synonyms
Antonyms
Quotes
Words linked to  

only single words



Share |





"Fretful" Quotes from Famous Books



... and quibble of words, or the odd and meaningless incongruities in things that strike us as "funny." Its basis lies in the deeper contrasts offered by life itself: the strange incongruity between our aspiration and our achievement, the eager and fretful anxieties of to-day that fade into nothingness to-morrow, the burning pain and the sharp sorrow that are softened in the gentle retrospect of time, till as we look back upon the course that has been traversed we pass in view the panorama ...
— Further Foolishness • Stephen Leacock

... land-locked bay and the strange old town of Stromness; and the house was silent and lonely without them and Rahal wished that her husband would come home and talk with her, for her soul was under a cloud of presentiments and she said to herself after a morning of fretful, inefficient work: "Oh, how much easier it is to love God than it is to trust Him. Are not my dear ones in His care? Yet about them I am constantly worrying; though perfectly well I know that in any deluge that may come, God will find an ark for those who ...
— An Orkney Maid • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... man sat smoking. Occasionally he turned his head to watch with keen eyes the fretful movements of a fly hovering above the water. Then a sudden dimple in the smooth surface of the stream arrested his attention. A few concentric ripples widened, travelled towards him, and were absorbed in the current. His lips curved into a little smile and he reached ...
— Uncanny Tales • Various

... something in the life of towns which seems to make the voices of the country alien and sorrowful. They are lost in the tumult, and, if heard, sound only like a reproach against a fretful world, an echo from some Eden from which we have ...
— Pebbles on the Shore • Alpha of the Plough (Alfred George Gardiner)

... forth the choicest qualities of mind and soul. It can only be properly conducted by a being in full possession of the five wits. For those who are in pain, sorrow, or grievous perplexity it operates as a sovereign consoler, a balm and balsam to the harassed spirit; it calms the fretful, makes jovial the peevish. Better than any ginseng in the herbal, does it combat fatigue and old age. Well did Stevenson exhort virgins not to marry men ...
— Shandygaff • Christopher Morley

... Saturday and a busy time for the housekeeper. She had neither leisure nor inclination to argue with a fretful patient, so went away and left him to himself. But she found his desire for Katharine's society an excellent thing. As she had said of Deacon Meakin, "it kep' her out of mischief" to act as nurse to the injured farmer, and he now delighted in her. The stories of her old life in the Southern ...
— The Brass Bound Box • Evelyn Raymond

... her expectations? She is watchful and tactful,—the little mother-talks she remembers. She did not believe when mother told her, that he had qualities which she would only find out after marriage, but she knows now. She is learning that household duties are exacting and fretful; that, though married, life still has a few thorns. She finds out also that the long day, when husband is at business, affords many opportunities for reflection and serious thought. These moments of seeming leisure are the moments of destiny. They are the introspective ...
— The Eugenic Marriage, Vol. 3 (of 4) - A Personal Guide to the New Science of Better Living and Better Babies • W. Grant Hague

... of wood on the mountain-side, beckons and allures his imagination day after day, and is yet as inaccessible to his feet as the clefts and gorges of the clouds. The sense of distance grows upon him wonderfully; and after some feverish efforts and the fretful uneasiness of the first few days, he falls contentedly in with the restrictions of his weakness. His narrow round becomes pleasant and familiar to him as the cell to a contented prisoner. Just as he has fallen already out of the mid race of active life, he now falls ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 2 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... from the time that he was certain his death was near, appeared to be perfectly resigned, was seldom or never fretful or out of temper, and often said to his faithful servant, who gave me this account, 'Attend, Francis, to the salvation of your soul, which is the object of greatest importance:' he also explained to him passages in the Scripture, and seemed to have pleasure in talking ...
— Stories of Authors, British and American • Edwin Watts Chubb

... flack to get free. She wondered why she didn't hold it down. The wind was a hot one; she felt that it was so. It made her head ache, and burned her cheek-bone. Urquhart was quite visible. He looked into the teeth of the wind, frowning and fretful. Why didn't she say something to him? She had a conviction that it was useless. "There's nothing to say, nothing to say." That rang in her head, like a church bell. "Nothing to say, nothing to say." A sense of desolation and total loss oppressed her. She had ...
— Love and Lucy • Maurice Henry Hewlett

... sick-room swiftly and noiselessly, put the nun through a strict cross-examination with the fretful sharpness of a person disturbed in her night's rest. Then she went into the sitting-room where Philippus was on the point of pledging Paula in his second cup of wine, while she stood before him with dishevelled hair and robe ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... wrinkled old Nokomis Nursed the little Hiawatha, Rooked him in his linden cradle, Stilled his fretful wail by saying, 'Hush! the naked bear will ...
— The Child and Childhood in Folk-Thought • Alexander F. Chamberlain

... interesting stranger was signalized by a change in the habits and condition of this household as sudden as that which had attended his first introduction to it. Mrs. C—— grew gradually fretful, restless, and anxious; which might well be, for her husband was on a sudden laid up with sickness, and their only child studiously shunned their society, locking herself within her chamber, or moping about the grounds she ...
— Impressions of America - During the years 1833, 1834 and 1835. In Two Volumes, Volume I. • Tyrone Power

... and convex lenses, which magnify some things and minify others. The self-satisfied man sees every one's faults in giant proportions; and every one's virtues, but his own, dwarfed into insignificance. To the fretful man others seem fretful; to the envious man, envious; and so with the well-disposed, gentle, and generous; sunshine prevails over shadows. The world is different to different observers, largely because they have different media through ...
— The True Citizen, How To Become One • W. F. Markwick, D. D. and W. A. Smith, A. B.

... in the great pile, where for many months he had gone freely in and out on his way to the library, and the housekeeper only met him to make an apology for her working dress, and to hand over to him the keys of the library bookcases, with the fretful comment that seemed to have in it the ghostly voice of generations of housemaids, 'Oh lor', sir, they ...
— Robert Elsmere • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... the nobility are rarely found in strength amongst the mass of ordinary gentlemen? It is because, in order to qualify a man for the higher functions of courtesy, he ought to be separated from the strife of the world. The fretful collision with rivalship and angry tempers, insensibly modifies the demeanour of every man. But the British nobleman, intrenched in wealth, enjoys an immunity from this irritating discipline. He is able to act by proxy: and all services of unpleasant contest he devolves ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine—Vol. 54, No. 333, July 1843 • Various

... home at night, Miss Mattie was partially awake and inclined to be fretful. "The strength is gone out of my medicine," she grumbled, "and it ain't time to take more. I've got to set here and be deprived of my sleep until ...
— Flower of the Dusk • Myrtle Reed

... poor Thorny is weak and fretful, and does not like to exert himself, though he ought to be out a great deal, and kept from thinking of his little troubles. He cannot walk much yet, so I have a wheeled chair to push him in; and the paths are so hard, it will ...
— Under the Lilacs • Louisa May Alcott

... his senses plumb to the end. I remember his very las' words. I was settin' by him, waitin' fer the doctor to git there, an' I kep' saying 'Oh, Mr. Wiggs! You don't think you are dying do you?' an' he answered up jes' as natural an' fretful-like, 'Good lan', Nancy! How do I know? I ain't never died before.' An' them was the very ...
— Mrs. Wiggs of the Cabbage Patch • Alice Caldwell Hegan

... discovered it, and as if anybody—even dear Kitty herself—was responsible for HIS convictions and actions but himself. Nevertheless, this gentle egotist was unusually serious, and when the child awoke at last, and with a fretful start and vacant eyes pushed his caressing hand away, he felt lonelier than before. It was with a slight sense of humiliation, too, that he saw it stretch its hands to the mere hireling, Norah, ...
— The Three Partners • Bret Harte

... a woman, and a very young woman. There are certain things a young woman cannot do. If you had been the boy I always wished you were it would have been a different matter, but you are not a boy, and the whole thing is impossible—utterly impossible." There was a fretful impatience in his voice. ...
— The Sheik - A Novel • E. M. Hull

... noted that in proportion as he waxed wealthy and fortunate, he grew pale, thin, and anxious. As his wife's popularity increased, he became fretful and impatient. The most uxorious of husbands, he was absurdly jealous. If he did not interfere with his wife's social liberty, it was because it was maliciously whispered that his first and only attempt was met by an outburst from Mrs. Brown that terrified him into silence. Much of this kind ...
— Selected Stories • Bret Harte

... and the hand, the leg, and the whole body, may be employed to soothe and encourage. High-mettled or fretful horses, it is often necessary to soothe, and timid ones to encourage. A spirited animal is frequently impatient when first mounted, or, if a horse or a carriage pass him at a quick rate; and some horses are even so ardent and animated, as to be unpleasant to ride when with others. In either of these ...
— The Young Lady's Equestrian Manual • Anonymous

... or three of her favourite poems, but with little heart in her reading, for she felt that her listener was not listening. Now and then would come an impatient sigh, or a fretful movement of the jewelled hands; once a sapphire was tossed up in the air, and fell on the floor by Margaret's feet. Only when she began the lovely "Good Night, Babette!" did Mrs. Peyton's attention seem to fix. She listened quietly, and, at the ...
— Margaret Montfort • Laura E. Richards

... Nanteuil conceived and gave expression to bright and cheerful ideas, Felicie was fast becoming gloomy, fretful, and sullen. Lines began to show in her pretty face; her voice assumed a grating quality. She had at once realized the position which Monsieur Bondois occupied in the household, and, whether she would have preferred her mother to live and breathe for ...
— A Mummer's Tale • Anatole France

... unforeseen difficulties. We don't know exactly how to do it, and are apt to make mistakes; and so we spoil some of our work, and this makes us impatient and fretful." ...
— Rollo's Experiments • Jacob Abbott

... her to the dressing-room of the woman of fashion; and this last greeted Sally with a fretful, preoccupied frown, visible in the mirror, which reflected as well the excellent results obtainable from discreet employment ...
— Nobody • Louis Joseph Vance

... I be sure?" I asked fretfully, for grief as often makes men fretful as illness. "I did not ask ...
— The Doctor's Dilemma • Hesba Stretton

... had been a trifling degree disturbed. It occurred to him as he lingered by the door of their reserved first-class compartment that they had a little too much the air of gentlemen departing on their own pleasure rather than on his business. No sooner did he drop a fretful hint of this opinion than their affectionate protestations had quickly revived his spirit; but now that they were no longer with him to counsel and encourage, it once ...
— Count Bunker • J. Storer Clouston

... happy or contented when her sons were at sea, but in a constant fidget of anxiety and fear. She did not like both sailing in the same vessel. 'It is too much,' she would say—'the safety of two lives out of one family—to be trusted to one keel.' This morning she was more fretful ...
— Flora Lyndsay - or, Passages in an Eventful Life • Susan Moodie

... of our times are chiefly attributable to tea and coffee. The digestive organs of confirmed coffee drinkers are in a state of chronic derangement which reacts on the brain, producing fretful and lachrymose moods. The snappish, petulant humor of the Chinese can certainly be ascribed to their immoderate fondness ...
— Science in the Kitchen. • Mrs. E. E. Kellogg

... this was a fretful longing for the past happiness to which the new country, the new conditions, Aurora Mike, and his own abounding vitality, had contributed. He shunned the conditions, and was angry because the object eluded him. Done, in his sick desire to know himself ceased to be ...
— In the Roaring Fifties • Edward Dyson

... was it the same that had droned accompaniment to Cap'n' Abe's story-telling upon a former occasion?) boomed against the dusty panes of the window while the fretful, sand-laden wind swept searchingly about the store on the ...
— Cap'n Abe, Storekeeper • James A. Cooper

... the day ended, but no! The next day the same thing. He longed for Mr. Eden's hour to come; it came, but not with it came his one bit of sunshine, his excitement, his amusement, his consolation, his friend, his brother, his all. And so one heavy day succeeded another, and Robinson became fretful, and very, very sad. One day, as he sat disconsolate and foreboding in his cell, he heard a stranger's voice talking to Fry outside. And what was more strange, Fry appeared to be inviting this person to inspect the cells. ...
— It Is Never Too Late to Mend • Charles Reade

... outlived his promising young representative. His state was truly pitiable—all his fine faculties lost in paralytic imbecility, and yet not so entirely so but that he perceived his deprivation as in a glass darkly. Sometimes he was fretful and anxious because he did not see his son; sometimes he expostulated and complained that his boy had been allowed to die without his seeing him; and sometimes, in a less clouded state of intellect, he was sensible of, and lamented ...
— Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott, Volume V (of 10) • John Gibson Lockhart

... flowers and quiet little ancient Yorkshire farmhouses, not to speak of Ingleborough, who was, I think, a little depressed because he knew you were only going to send your remembrances and not your love to him. The clouds gathered on his brow occasionally in a fretful manner, but towards evening he resumed his peace of mind and sends you his "remembrances" and his "blessing." I believe he saves both you and me from a ...
— Hortus Inclusus - Messages from the Wood to the Garden, Sent in Happy Days - to the Sister Ladies of the Thwaite, Coniston • John Ruskin

... influences have no effect, and robust middle age, if it perceive them, goes on its way steadfast or stolid, with a cela passera, tout passera. But on the feeble and the failing such times fall with a weight of fretful despondency; and so they ...
— The Nebuly Coat • John Meade Falkner

... forget and wound the hearts of your children with frowns and the dagger of cruel words, and sometimes with a blow? Do you sometimes, in your own peevishness, and your own meanness, wish yourself away from their fretful cries and noisy sports? Then think that to-morrow may ripen the wicked wish; tomorrow death may lay his hand upon a little fluttering heart and it will be stilled forever. 'Tis then you will miss the sunbeam and the sweet little flower that reflected heaven on the ...
— Gov. Bob. Taylor's Tales • Robert L. Taylor

... my heart. Oh, the tired, strained, impatient faces, and the eager, alert, and anxious expression that belong to the people of this new and free country! Some of these wretched mortals had babies with them,—babies whose fretful wails seemed but to voice the mother's expression of countenance. In an uneasy way the little mites would be shifted from one shoulder to another, or trotted in nervousness that reminded me irresistibly of the nursery rhyme which might be the motto ...
— The Secret of a Happy Home (1896) • Marion Harland

... the proper treatment of the distinguished Guest. While she busied herself with preparations and "was cumbered about much serving," well intended for the comfort and entertainment of Jesus, Mary sat at the Master's feet, listening with reverent attention to His words. Martha grew fretful in her bustling anxiety, and came in, saying: "Lord, dost thou not care that my sister hath left me to serve alone? bid her therefore that she help me." She was talking to Jesus but really at Mary. For the moment she had lost her calmness ...
— Jesus the Christ - A Study of the Messiah and His Mission According to Holy - Scriptures Both Ancient and Modern • James Edward Talmage

... and now, enlivened by finding that his influence with her was unimpaired, and that her heart was yet her own, he ceased his exhortations, and turned the discourse to subjects more gay and general, judiciously cautious neither by tedious admonitions to disgust, nor by fretful solicitude to alarm her. He did not quit her till the evening was far advanced, and then, in returning to his own house, felt all his anxieties and disappointments recompensed by the comfort this long and satisfactory ...
— Cecilia Volume 1 • Frances Burney

... spoke, the pink infant in the crib awoke and set up a dismal wail. The young mother arose, with an impatient sigh, lifted the babe, and sat down in a low nurse-chair, to soothe it to sleep again. But the baby was fretful, and cried and moaned drearily, and resisted every effort ...
— Kate Danton, or, Captain Danton's Daughters - A Novel • May Agnes Fleming

... the water, Beat the clear and sunny water, Beat the shining Big-Sea-Water. There the wrinkled old Nokomis Nursed the little Hiawatha, Rocked him in his linden cradle, Bedded soft in moss and rushes, Safely bound with reindeer sinews; Stilled his fretful wail by saying, "Hush! the Naked Bear will hear thee!" Lulled him into slumber, singing, "Ewa-yea! my little owlet! Who is this, that lights the wigwam? With his great eyes lights the wigwam? Ewa-yea! ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Henry Wadsworth Longfellow • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

... fine-ladyism, which she had cultivated so assiduously and achieved so successfully. Not a muscle of her face changed when she saw Jerrie, but she closed Maude's door quickly, and stepping into the hall, offered the tips of her fingers, as she said, in a fretful, rather than ...
— Tracy Park • Mary Jane Holmes

... freedom. She called on Secretary Stanton, but he was in one of his boorish moods—was he ever out of them?—and repulsed her with rudeness. She finally appealed to the President, who seemed very often balm to Stanton, "a fretful corrosive applied to a deathly wound," and he gave her an order to receive the young man if he swore off his pledge to ...
— The Lincoln Story Book • Henry L. Williams

... here made me uneasy, and almost fretful. Dr Johnson was calm. I said, he was so from vanity. JOHNSON. 'No, sir, it is from philosophy.' It pleased me to see that the Rambler could practise so ...
— The Journal of a Tour to the Hebrides with Samuel Johnson, LL.D. • James Boswell

... Gladstone one of the ablest as well as happiest of the century. He took the keenest delight in the scholarly and beautiful, and this accounts for his disregard of minor ills and evils. He was too absorbed to be fretful or impatient. But to be absorbed in great things did not mean, in his case, to be neglectful of little things. At one time his mind and time were so completely taken up with the Eastern question, that he could not be induced to spare a thought for Ireland, and afterward it was quite ...
— The Grand Old Man • Richard B. Cook

... died. The smell of damp came out. Occasionally a motor-car sped by, or a passer-by, each step clear on the asphalt. The song of crickets grated against the darkness. An infant in the right-side house raised a fretful voice once or twice, and then broke into a sustained and coughy fit of crying. Lights flashed up in the windows, silhouettes moving across drawn shades. Then silence again. The university clock, a mile out, chimed ...
— Humoresque - A Laugh On Life With A Tear Behind It • Fannie Hurst

... looked careworn, partly, no doubt, with the harass of continual attention to her sister Alda, who, though subdued and improved in many important ways, was unavoidably fretful from ill- health, and disposed to be very miserable over her straitened means, and the future lot of her eight daughters, especially as the two of the most favourable age seemed to resign their immediate chances of marrying. Moreover, ...
— The Long Vacation • Charlotte M. Yonge

... and it would be just as foolish to afflict oneself because of an eclipse of the sun or moon, as to be grieved on account of the changes which Fortune is pleased to cause. Many other writers speak in the same fretful strain. There is now work in the vast field of literature for all who have the taste, ability, and requisite knowledge; and few authors now find their books fatal to them—except perhaps to their reputation, when ...
— Books Fatal to Their Authors • P. H. Ditchfield

... and Aunt Dalmanutha resumed her knitting, swiftly and fiercely, all the pent-up force of a strong nature thrown into the simple act. Instead of the repose that characterizes the faces of the blind, her eaglelike countenance bore the marks of fretful, ...
— Sight to the Blind • Lucy Furman

... my spite, Tell me, what have I to write? Every error I could find Through the mazes of your mind, Have my busy Muse employ'd, Till the company was cloy'd. Are you positive and fretful, Heedless, ignorant, forgetful? Those, and twenty follies more, I have often told before. Hearken what my lady says: Have I nothing then to praise? Ill it fits you to be witty, Where a fault should move your pity. If you think me too conceited, Or ...
— The Poems of Jonathan Swift, D.D., Volume I (of 2) • Jonathan Swift

... knew that I could not have borne to walk even to the end of the street unprotected. So I stayed where I was, seated in a chair near the window of the larger room, saturating myself in the vague and heavy flood of sadness that enwraps the fretful, passionate city in the night—the night when the commonest noises seem to carry some mystic message to the listening soul, the night when truth walks abroad ...
— Sacred And Profane Love • E. Arnold Bennett

... sometimes act upon the moral system, that a sweet sensation steals gradually over the heart, even when we think we have reason to be sorrowful, and while we almost accuse ourselves of a want of feeling. The fretful hypochondriac would do well to bear this fact in mind, and not take it for granted that all are cold and selfish who fail to sympathize with his fantastic cares. He should remember that men are sometimes ...
— Flowers and Flower-Gardens • David Lester Richardson

... rests upon the wife, there are corresponding weights and annoyances that fall upon the man. Business pressure and professional responsibility are wearying; he, too, feels the strain upon his nerves. When he returns home at evening he is easily disturbed by a worried wife, tired and fretful children, and the unmistakable atmosphere of gloom and friction that permeates many homes. He contrasts his unenviable position with the freedom and good-fellowship of the club, and chafes under the family ...
— Society - Its Origin and Development • Henry Kalloch Rowe

... owned its deformity in her presence. The darkest habitations of earth have been irradiated with heavenly light, and the death shriek of immolated victims changed for ascriptions of praise to God and the Lamb. Envy and Malice have been rebuked by her contented look, and fretful Impatience by her ...
— The Story of Mattie J. Jackson • L. S. Thompson

... swaddling clothes, so as to make their movements free and unconfined, and also to make them easily satisfied, not nice as to food, not afraid in the dark, not frightened at being alone, not peevish and fretful. For this reason, many foreigners used to obtain Lacedaemonian nurses for their children, and it is said that Amykla, the nurse of Alkibiades, was a Lacedaemonian. But Plato tells us that Perikles put him under the care of one Zopyrus, who was no better than the other slaves; whereas Lykurgus ...
— Plutarch's Lives, Volume I (of 4) • Plutarch

... the door was closed behind her, and she found herself in the presence of a tall thin woman, who was lying full length on a sofa by the open window. Never was there a more peevish face than the invalid wore. Her brows were slightly drawn together, her lips had fretful curves; the pallor of great pain, of intense nervous suffering, dwelt on her brow. Frances went softly ...
— Frances Kane's Fortune • L. T. Meade

... no bearing the house with such an ill-natured wife:—her sister Polly was worth a thousand of her!—I am heartily sorry for their unhappiness. But could she think every body must bear with her, and her fretful ways?—They'll jangle on, I reckon, till they are better used to one another; and when he sees she can't help it, why he'll bear with her, as husbands generally do with ill-tempered wives; he'll try to make himself happy abroad, and leave her to quarrel with her maids, instead ...
— Pamela (Vol. II.) • Samuel Richardson

... but her face is serene and peaceful, though trouble has not passed her by. She seems utterly above the little worries and vexations which torment the average woman and leave lines of care. The Fretful Woman asked her one day the secret of her happiness; and the beautiful old face ...
— Cheerfulness as a Life Power • Orison Swett Marden

... serious, and poverty-stricken Elector, who has lived through much affliction, and must content himself, despite his glorious title, with being a poor tormented man, and therefore also a peevish man. I was once otherwise; that you know. But debts make the wildest tame and the most joyous fretful, as you see in me, old ...
— The Youth of the Great Elector • L. Muhlbach

... the one that was repulsed at Ticonderoga," said a thin, elderly man. "I hear 'tis commanded by young Wolfe, who is sickly and much given to complaint. Abercrombie, who led us at Ticonderoga, was fat, old and slothful, and now Wolfe, who leads the new force is young, sickly and fretful. It seems that England can't choose a middle course. Why doesn't she ...
— The Sun Of Quebec - A Story of a Great Crisis • Joseph A. Altsheler

... certain that I shall—I do already. You can't imagine what queer, fretful-looking lines were beginning to show themselves on George's brow. He would have looked old enough for a grandfather in a few years, if I had gone on trying to realize the hope he expressed, that I would abstain from ...
— The Wedding Guest • T.S. Arthur

... chariot—came to Bolt Court from Johnson's Court, whither he had flitted from Inner Temple Lane, where he was living when the young Scotch barrister who was afterwards his biographer first knew him. His strange household of fretful and disappointed almspeople seems as well known as our own. At the head of these pensioners was the daughter of a Welsh doctor, (a blind old lady named Williams), who had written some trivial poems; Mrs. Desmoulins, an old Staffordshire lady, ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... teach perhaps a trick or two of their stage business in early life—as, for instance, that it is good where there is much black to break it with white, and where there is much white to break it with black, etc., etc.; in later life remain silent altogether, or speak only in despair (fretful or patient according to their character); one who might have been among the best of them,[63] the last we heard of, finding refuge for an entirely honest heart from a world which declares honesty to be impossible, only in a madness nearly as sorrowful ...
— On the Old Road Vol. 1 (of 2) - A Collection of Miscellaneous Essays and Articles on Art and Literature • John Ruskin

... time, though she was more devoted than ever to her sick sister, she was soft and bright to nobody else. She did not complain, but she thought that things had been very hard with her; and when people repine their troubles do not make them kinder, but the brave grow stern and the soft grow fretful. ...
— Countess Kate • Charlotte M. Yonge

... And the fretful porcupine laughed and this made Billy Bunny very angry, and he took his popgun out of his knapsack and hit the porcupine on the end of the nose with the cork bullet, and this made the prickly animal ...
— Billy Bunny and Uncle Bull Frog • David Magie Cory

... of his imprisonment in the castle of Zenda, soon broke utterly. He lived, indeed; nay, he shot and hunted, and kept in his hand some measure, at least, of government. But always from the day of his release he was a fretful invalid, different utterly from the gay and jovial prince whom Michael's villains had caught in the shooting lodge. There was worse than this. As time went on, the first impulse of gratitude and admiration that ...
— Rupert of Hentzau - From The Memoirs of Fritz Von Tarlenheim: The Sequel to - The Prisoner of Zenda • Anthony Hope

... eastern part of this kingdom, a certain Prisoner. His Name was known to none, not even to the guards who kept watch over him, so to speak, night and day,—not even to the gaoler, who had been told that he must answer with his Head for his safe custody, who had him always in a spying, fretful overlooking, and who slept every night with the keys of the Captive's cell under his pillow. The Castle where he lay in hold has been long since levelled to the earth, if, indeed, it ever had any earth to rest upon, and was not rather stayed upon some ...
— The Strange Adventures of Captain Dangerous, Vol. 1 of 3 • George Augustus Sala

... I should take her too! I won't run any risks at all with her! It would be simply wicked to take such a small child into danger." But there was a fretful desperation in the tone, as of one long accustomed to protest ...
— The Mating of Lydia • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... always sparing to give, careless as to talk, unwilling to sit silent, eager for food, wakeful for news, weary of a good book, quick to anger, easy of offence at my neighbour, and too ready to judge him, too merry over prosperity, and too gloomy, fretful, and peevish in adversity; so often making good rules for my future life, and coming so little speed with them all, and so on. And, in facing even such a terrible thicket as that, let not even an old man absolutely despair. At forty, at sixty, at threescore and ten, ...
— Bunyan Characters - Third Series - The Holy War • Alexander Whyte

... wretched as he declared himself to be, he was not wholly unsusceptible of attachments. He revered the memory of Hoyle, as he was himself an admirable and imperturbable whist-player, and he chuckled with delight at a fretful and impatient adversary. He adored King Herod for his massacre of the innocents; and if he hated one thing more than another, it was a child. However, he could hardly be said to hate anything in particular, ...
— Sketches by Boz - illustrative of everyday life and every-day people • Charles Dickens

... powerfully tend to a common level and likeness. The higher must redeem and lift the unequal mate, or live in strife and misery. If the lower takes pattern after the superior one, the petty, frivolous, false, and fretful becoming magnanimous, dedicated, truthful, and serene, it is a divine triumph of grace, and the result will be full of blessedness. But otherwise a wearing unhappiness is inevitable, however carefully it be hidden, however bravely it be borne. George Sand says very strikingly of Rousseau and ...
— The Friendships of Women • William Rounseville Alger

... is fretful, Unhappy, and cross, No matter what she may be doing, And cry-baby Belle Pleases nobody well Because of ...
— Cole's Funny Picture Book No. 1 • Edward William Cole

... sofa! It had stood for years, An invitation to benign repose, A foe to all the fretful brood of fears, Bidding the weary eye-lid sink and close. Massive and deep and broad it was and bland— In short the noblest sofa in ...
— Punch, Or The London Charivari, Vol. 146., January 21, 1914 • Various

... growing strong, And somewhat fretful with its house of clay, And waiting quite impatiently to lay It off, and soar in light away, To hymn th' "eternal song." This is a cowardice Perhaps—a deep, mean selfishness withal. That whets our longings in the ...
— The Poets and Poetry of Cecil County, Maryland • Various

... be honest, it is most unpleasant on deck, rainy with a damp, hot wind blowing, and the music-room is crowded and stuffy beyond words, or I might not be unselfish enough to remain with G. I did go up, and a fat person, whose nurse was ill, gave me her baby to hold, a poor white-faced, fretful baby, who pulled down all my hair, and I have had the unpleasant task of doing it up again. If you have ever stood in a very hot greenhouse with the door shut, and wrestled with something above your head, you will know ...
— Olivia in India • O. Douglas

... without much judgement, or the judgement I expected from him, and already they have evaded the necessity of bringing people into the Exchequer with their bills to be paid there. Sir G. Carteret is titched—[fretful, tetchy]—at this, yet resolves with me to make the best use we can of this Act for the King, but all our care, we think, will not render it as it should be. He did again here alone discourse with me about my Lord, and is himself strongly for my Lord's not going to ...
— Diary of Samuel Pepys, Complete • Samuel Pepys

... try to silence him with promises, beg of him to wait a few days, and when this failed of the quiet I desired, I would seek to intimidate him by declaring, as a sure result of negligence, our inability to reach home alive. All to no purpose—he tormented me with his fretful humors through the entire journey. The others would generally concur with him in these fancied altercations. The legs implored me for rest, and the arms complained that I gave them too much to do. Troublesome as they were, it was a pleasure to realize their presence. I worked ...
— Thirty-Seven Days of Peril - from Scribner's Monthly Vol III Nov. 1871 • Truman Everts

... of the place, he looked incredibly young. She could see only his profile—the backward sweep of glistening, pomaded hair, the little short straight nose, the sensual, fretful lips—and as she watched him she was smitten with a queer sense of pity. This was no strong man, no lover and husband—just a little clerk she was going to shut up in prison—a little singing clerk. ...
— Joanna Godden • Sheila Kaye-Smith

... clover behind him—a purple, elfin creature, gifted with a prehensile dignity. The cows did not appear after his first call. He lifted his head and called again in a high plaintive tone, as one reasons with a fretful child. 'Come o-on, come o-on!' Then he sank into the landscape again. After an interval, a polished red and white cow appeared at a distance of five fields, coming serenely on at her own pace. A white one and a roan followed her at long distances. They advanced through the shadows, ...
— Gone to Earth • Mary Webb

... written to me in a style which I could almost be tempted to call impertinent, but that I wish to avoid a quarrel with you, Mr. Henley, unless you force me to it. There is law as you say, Mr. Henley, for every man; but law is a very fretful and indeed fearful thing, to which you know I am averse, Mr. Henley. Not but there are proceedings, Mr. Henley, which may lead me to consider how far ...
— Anna St. Ives • Thomas Holcroft

... sat at her southern window, where the river breeze blew across the garden, and watched placidly the palm-leaf fan which Mammy Riah waved before her face. The magnolia tree had flowered in great white blossoms, and the heavy perfume mingled in Virginia's thoughts with the yellow sunshine, the fretful clamour, and the hot dust of the city. When at the end of May a rain storm burst overhead and sent the wide white petals to the earth, it was almost a relief to see them go. But by the morrow new ones had opened, and the perfume ...
— The Battle Ground • Ellen Glasgow

... time came, they were a little late in starting. Baby was fretful, and though Billy usually laid him in his crib and unhesitatingly left the room, insisting that he should go to sleep by himself in accordance with the most approved rules in her Scientific Training; yet to-night she could not bring herself to the point of leaving the house until he was ...
— Miss Billy Married • Eleanor H. Porter

... more, but put on her hat and trundled away with fretful baby, thinking to find her fellow-sufferer and have a laugh over the joke. She was disappointed, however, for Harry called papa away to weed the lettuce-bed, and then shut him up in the study to get his lessons, while he mounted the pony and ...
— Aunt Jo's Scrap-Bag • Louisa M. Alcott

... on a day of early Autumn when I stood knee-deep in the heather of Glengyle, and looked wistfully over the grey sea. 'Twas but a month later when, homeless and friendless, I stood on the beach by the Cliff House of San Francisco, and gazed over the fretful waters of another ocean. Such is ...
— The Trail of '98 - A Northland Romance • Robert W. Service

... does not matter, I am yours. You have told me, in your better moments, that Providence appointed me to watch over you as a mother. Yes, when you make me suffer I do not look upon you as a lover, but as a sick child, fretful and rebellious, that I must care for and cure in order that I may always keep him and love him. May God give me that power!" she added looking up to heaven. "May God who sees me, who hears us, may the God of mothers and of lovers permit me to accomplish that ...
— Serge Panine • Georges Ohnet

... these virtuosos looked on all his associates as wretches of depraved taste and narrow notions. Their conversation was, therefore, fretful and waspish, their behaviour brutal, their merriment bluntly sarcastick, and their seriousness gloomy and suspicious. They were totally ignorant of all that passes, or has lately passed, in the world; unable to discuss any question of religious, ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson - Volume IV [The Rambler and The Adventurer] • Samuel Johnson

... to pursue her during the ensuing evening and even interfered with her slumbers during the night. This—most unusual occurrence—rendered her fretful. She reproached her tractable and distressed little General with having encouraged her to walk much too far. In future he swore to insist on the carriage, however confidently she might assert the need of active exertion. She pointed out the fallacy of rushing to extremes; which ...
— Deadham Hard • Lucas Malet

... fretful-looking little pair went solemnly to Christie's knee, and stood there staring at her with a dull composure that quite daunted her, ...
— Work: A Story of Experience • Louisa May Alcott

... of the mothers were as methodical as well trained nurses. In their faces was the cold, pallid light of the mother love of the madonnas of art, uncontaminated by the fretful excitement of the mother love in a freer and more ...
— City of Endless Night • Milo Hastings

... and shallows, sent a voice That flowed along my dreams? For this, didst thou, O Derwent! winding among grassy holms 275 Where I was looking on, a babe in arms, Make ceaseless music that composed my thoughts To more than infant softness, giving me Amid the fretful dwellings of mankind A foretaste, a dim earnest, of the calm 280 That Nature breathes among the hills and groves? When he had left the mountains and received On his smooth breast the shadow of those towers [W] That yet survive, a shattered ...
— The Poetical Works of William Wordsworth, Vol. III • William Wordsworth

... of yours! I wish you would let me alone!' broke out Dolores, in a fretful fright lest any one should guess that she had ...
— The Two Sides of the Shield • Charlotte M. Yonge

... a "breather," as he called it. The animal was so strong and powerful that he chafed at restraint, and, unless ridden regularly and hard, had a very disagreeable, fretful trot. After a good gallop up one of the long Rockbridge hills he would proceed at ...
— Recollections and Letters of General Robert E. Lee • Captain Robert E. Lee, His Son

... from all relation with his kind, All temporal and immediate circumstance, In silence, in the visionary mood That, flashing light on the dark deep, perceives Order beyond this coil and errancy; Isled from the fretful hour he stands alone, And hears the eternal movement, and beholds Above him and around and at his feet, In million-billowed consentaneousness, The flowing, flowing, flowing of ...
— Platform Monologues • T. G. Tucker

... debating the point with the lady. At length he saw the sloop of war again make her appearance; but, without approaching the shore, she stood away to the westward with all her sails set, and was soon out of sight. The lady's state of timorous and fretful apprehension was so habitual that her fears went for nothing with her lord and master; but an appearance of disturbance and anxiety among the servants now excited his alarm, especially when he was called out of the room, and told ...
— Guy Mannering, or The Astrologer, Complete, Illustrated • Sir Walter Scott

... a medicine-case, some of these lacking either strap or handle. The attendants all emitted hearty sighs of relief when these articles had been deposited upon the platform. Without being told, I divined that the Honourable George had greatly worried them during the long journey with his fretful demands for service, and I tipped them handsomely while he was still engaged with Cousin Egbert and the latter's station-lounging friends to whom he was being presented. At last, observing me, he came forward, but halted on surveying the luggage, and screamed hoarsely to the ...
— Ruggles of Red Gap • Harry Leon Wilson

... you from the first there is no remedy. Our hopes are lost: lost by one miserable trifler, ignorant, fretful, fitful - who will have disappeared to-morrow, who ...
— Prince Otto • Robert Louis Stevenson

... young officer, who had fought stoutly and done his duty like a man. But when lying weak and wounded at home, the cheerful courage which had led him safely through many dangers seemed to have deserted him, and he was often gloomy, sad, or fretful, because he longed to be at his post again, and time passed very slowly. This troubled his mother, and made Nelly wonder why he found lying in a pleasant room so much harder than fighting battles or making weary marches. Anything that interested and amused him was very welcome, ...
— A Modern Cinderella - or The Little Old Show and Other Stories • Louisa May Alcott

... clatter of smashing iron as they took the switches recklessly. The noise soothed her; in the quiet intervals she was listening for sounds from upstairs. The night was still and languorous, one of the peaceful nights of large spaces when the heavens brood over the earth like a mother over a fretful child. At last no more cars came booming out of the distance. She shut the windows and bolted the door; then she prepared slowly ...
— The Web of Life • Robert Herrick

... my ship, Master Conisby, you eat the food my money hath paid for! Doth this suffice your foolish, stubborn pride?" Here, finding nought to say, I scowled at my fetters and held my peace, whereat she sighed a little, as I had been some fretful, peevish child: "Why are you here in my ship?" she questioned patiently. "Was it for vengeance? Tell me," she demanded, "is it that you came ...
— Black Bartlemy's Treasure • Jeffrey Farnol

... incapable of showing his bad temper by rudeness. From the period of his boyhood, when Torrigiano smashed his nose, down to the last years of his life in Rome, when he abused his nephew Lionardo and hurt the feelings of his best and oldest friends, he discovered signs of a highly nervous and fretful temperament. It must be admitted that the dominant qualities of nobility and generosity in his nature were alloyed by suspicion bordering on littleness, and by petulant yieldings to the irritation of the moment ...
— The Life of Michelangelo Buonarroti • John Addington Symonds

... hear that paradox of impossibilities—silence become vocal—must traverse the vast wastes of the prairie by night. As a mother quiets a fretful child, so the illimitable calm lulls tumultuous thoughts. The wind moving through empty solitudes comes with a sigh of unutterable loneliness. Unconsciously, men listen for some faint rustling from the gauzy, wavering ...
— Lords of the North • A. C. Laut

... piercing through bone and marrow, in order to reach our hearts, and touch the springs of spiritual life within us, that henceforth, we may look upon all sorrow in a new light. Little troubles have only disturbed the surface of our nature, making it uneasy, and tossing it into fretful eddies; this heavy calamity, like a mighty wind, has plunged into the very depths, and turned up the foundations, leaving us, at length, purified and serene. I believe we shall find it to be the general testimony that those who have the ...
— The Crown of Thorns - A Token for the Sorrowing • E. H. Chapin

... uncertain, she prized it doubly, even though, by a strange fatality, she had never had so much trouble and vexation with them as arose at once on their being made over to her! When all was settled, doubt over, and the routine life begun, Lucilla evidently felt the blank of her vanished hopes, and became fretful and captious, weary of things in general, and without sufficient motive to control her natural taste for the variety of naughtiness! Honor had not undertaken the easiest of tasks, but she neither shrank from her enterprise nor ceased to love the fiery little flighty sprite, the ...
— Hopes and Fears - scenes from the life of a spinster • Charlotte M. Yonge

... boy in the box, then she and Myra obeyed Mrs. Longman's fretful demand that they draw up ...
— Tess of the Storm Country • Grace Miller White

... filled with wonder and contempt of the Emperor, who, according to their refined and accurate judgment of the fitness of things, should have been eternally grateful to the British Government that they did not have him shot. Why should he complain in the fretful way he does of his treatment and his condition? A great man would have shown his appreciation of all the money that was being spent on the needs for his existence and for the better security of his person. ...
— The Tragedy of St. Helena • Walter Runciman

... nodding earnestly. "But she was so fretful, she was always ailing; and it's better they should go when they get like that. But now we're soon going to get married again—when Father Lasse's ...
— Pelle the Conqueror, Complete • Martin Andersen Nexo

... my young lady chanced to be feeding some pigeons in the court. She had never spoken a word to her sister-in-law for three days; but she had likewise dropped her fretful complaining, and we found it a great comfort. Heathcliff had not the habit of bestowing a single unnecessary civility on Miss Linton, I knew. Now, as soon as he beheld her, his first precaution was to take a sweeping survey of the house-front. I was standing by the kitchen-window, ...
— Wuthering Heights • Emily Bronte

... mother, who died in the glooms of insanity, and, more than all, mortified and wounded by so sudden and so vast a reverse of fortune, in which all his plans seemed to have failed—thus oppressed, humbled, he retired in disgust to his room, indulged in the most fretful temper, admitted none but his sister and a few confidential servants to his presence, and so entirely neglected all business as to pass nine months without ...
— The Empire of Austria; Its Rise and Present Power • John S. C. Abbott

... own. "I read all the novels I can get," she said yesterday; "but I only like the good ones. I do so like Zanoni, which I have just finished." I must set her to work at some of the masters. I should like some of those fretful New-York heiresses to see how this woman lives. I wish, too, that half a dozen of ces messieurs of the clubs might take a peep at the present way of life of their humble servant. We breakfast at eight o'clock. Immediately afterwards, Miss Blunt, in a shabby old bonnet and shawl, ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 100, February, 1866 • Various

... and there was a vigorous ring in his voice. He had nothing to boast of in his attire; it consisted simply of a homespun shirt and patched trousers. The face of the third, Ilyusha, was rather uninteresting; it was a long face, with short-sighted eyes and a hook nose; it expressed a kind of dull, fretful uneasiness; his tightly- drawn lips seemed rigid; his contracted brow never relaxed; he seemed continually blinking from the firelight. His flaxen—almost white—hair hung out in thin wisps under his low felt hat, which he kept pulling down with both hands over his ...
— A Sportsman's Sketches - Works of Ivan Turgenev, Vol. I • Ivan Turgenev

... rendered, though Chesterfield was breaking his substitute for a heart because his son could not or would not play the superfine gentleman—on the paternal model, and then came the news of his death, when only thirty-six. What was a still greater shock to the lordly father, now deaf, gouty, fretful, and at outs with the world, his informant reported that she had been secretly married for several years to Young Hopeful, and was left penniless with two boys. Lord Chesterfield was above all things a practical ...
— The PG Edition of Chesterfield's Letters to His Son • The Earl of Chesterfield

... body, at other times some trouble of mind, often some disappointment, some humbling rebuke, or reproach, or the like. If we only bear these trials with patience when others are witnesses, or if we often speak of them, or are fretful under them, or if we bear patiently public affronts or great trials, yet sink under those which are trifling, and are sensible to small or secret injuries, it is evident that we have not attained to true purity of intention ...
— The Lives of the Fathers, Martyrs, and Principal Saints - January, February, March • Alban Butler

... close beside him. A little beyond, leaning against the rocky cliff, was a bulky figure in a long dust-coat. He had pushed up his motor-goggles and was wiping his forehead with a limp handkerchief. His round, fat face, with pursed-up lips and wide-open light-blue eyes, bore the expression of a fretful child. On his left was a lean, thin-faced fellow with a black mustache who looked scared and nervous. There was no sign of the third person who had been in the car, and even at this crucial moment Buck found time to observe the absence of his ...
— Shoe-Bar Stratton • Joseph Bushnell Ames

... heaven design'd To sway the movements of the mind, Whatever fretful passion springs, Whatever wayward fortune brings 50 To disarrange the power within, And strain the musical machine; Thou Goddess, thy attempering hand Doth each discordant string command, Refines the soft, and ...
— Poetical Works of Akenside - [Edited by George Gilfillan] • Mark Akenside

... nurse, "don't go yet. Our young master is fretful and there may be, I fancy, something ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book II • Cao Xueqin

... up and start out." He did not go up to Cuddy to speak to him as he usually would have done, but as if trying to avoid him, he fell to patting Happiness's striped face. She was fretful in her new quarters. "Perhaps," thought Willet, "she knows it's old Cuddy and he's gone out for good." All the horses seemed nervous and unhappy. It was as if they knew that one of their number was to be taken out to an inglorious ...
— O. Henry Memorial Award Prize Stories of 1920 • Various

... that the King, who for some hours had given no sign of life, opened his eyes at the moment of the consecration of the elements, and asked for the communion, saying, "God will cure me, soul and body." From this time forward he began to recover his health, though he remained fretful on account ...
— The Tales Of The Heptameron, Vol. I. (of V.) • Margaret, Queen Of Navarre

... other weaker in intellect than himself, and more in need of advice and assistance. So trifling a circumstance as a change of place, recommended by one as being warmer and more comfortable and refused by the other from a dread of motion, frequently called forth fretful expressions which were no sooner uttered than atoned for, to be repeated perhaps in the course of a few minutes. The same thing often occurred when we endeavoured to assist each other in carrying wood to the fire; ...
— The Journey to the Polar Sea • John Franklin

... the spray to Sarah, but the girl made no sign of accepting it. Dorothy was disappointed. She did not mind the sick girl being fretful, but she had not expected her ...
— Dorothy Dale • Margaret Penrose

... wanted grounds for such, or greater marks of impatience,—but 'twas unexpected too; in the four years he had attended him, he had never seen any thing like it in my uncle Toby's carriage; he had never once dropped one fretful or discontented word;—he had ...
— The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy, Gentleman • Laurence Sterne

... imagination, who spent eighty-eight years in an amiable and blameless life, and was country-gentleman, magistrate, antiquary, clergyman, and poet.[21] Such names are enough to recall a type which has not quite vanished, and which has gathered a new charm in more stirring and fretful times. These most excellent people, however, were not likely to be prominent in movements destined to break up the placid environment of their lives nor, in truth, to be sources of ...
— The English Utilitarians, Volume I. • Leslie Stephen

... Medicine attested, grinning mirthlessly. "This here sheep business is plumb wearin' on a man. 'Specially," he added with a fretful note, "when you've got to handle 'em gentle. The things I'd like to do to them Dots is all ruled outa the game, seems like. Honest to grandma, a little gore would look better to me right now than a Dutch picnic before the foam's all blowed off the refreshments. Lemme kill off jest one herder, ...
— Flying U Ranch • B. M. Bower

... contemporary wits and poets. He was, at least in his literary career, jealous, envious, irritable, vain, pedantic and bombastical, petulant and quarrelsome,—ever on the watch for an affront, and always in the attitude of a fretful porcupine with a quill pointed in every direction against real or supposititious enemies. In such a state of mental alarm and physical vaporing did he live, that he seems to have proclaimed a promiscuous war against ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. II., November, 1858., No. XIII. • Various

... de Guiche," said he, in a fretful voice, whilst putting on, behind the curtain, his dressing-gown, ...
— Ten Years Later - Chapters 1-104 • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... wooed her on the day when they heard of Jameson's Raid. That was not the voice which had spoken to her in broken tones of love on the day Ian first dined with her after her marriage—that fateful, desperate day. This was a voice which had a cheerless, fretful note, a savage something in it. Presently they two would meet, and she knew how it would be—an outward semblance, a superficial amenity and confidence before their guests; the smile of intimacy, when there was no intimacy, and ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... grimly-ludicrous moved me to a fretful laugh, as I replied, "I have looked over it. In Heaven's name, don't ...
— Great Expectations • Charles Dickens

... vagaries of a fever-crazed lunatic come some time to a limit. What is this talk about heads and baskets? Get yourself together and throw away that absurd cane-chopper. What would Miss Greene think of you?" he ended, with the silky cajolery that one would use toward a fretful child. ...
— Options • O. Henry

... and since, overhead, one of those not uncommon yet indescribable skies (in quality, not details or forms) of limpid blue, with rolling silver-fringed clouds, and a pure-dazzling sun. For underlay, trees in fulness of tender foliage—liquid, reedy, long-drawn notes of birds—based by the fretful mewing of a querulous cat-bird, and the pleasant chippering-shriek of two kingfishers. I have been watching the latter the last half hour, on their regular evening frolic over and in the stream; evidently a spree of the liveliest kind. They pursue each other, whirling and wheeling around, with ...
— Complete Prose Works - Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy • Walt Whitman

... disposed to listen to reason as herself. She was ignorant of the power of habit over her temper. The rector had taught her pride, marriage had taught her misfortune, and pride and misfortune had made her fretful, melancholy and moody. She had suffered no opposition from her first husband; her will had been his law; and she knew not, till she had made the trial, how difficult it is to concede with a good grace. The least thing that offended her threw ...
— The Adventures of Hugh Trevor • Thomas Holcroft

... how I can get ready soon. The baby is fretful, and I'm all worn out between broken rest and worry. Won't you take Effie for a ...
— A Young Girl's Wooing • E. P. Roe

... of the Micawber resemblances, Dickens has been sharply criticized; and in like manner it was thought objectionable in Scott that for the closing scenes of Crystal Croftangry he should have found the original of his fretful patient at the death-bed of his own father. Lockhart, who tells us this, adds with a sad significance that he himself lived to see the curtain fall at Abbotsford upon even such another scene. But to no purpose will such objections still be ...
— The Life of Charles Dickens, Vol. I-III, Complete • John Forster

... it knew what it was crying about, it being merely a matter of atmosphere and unstrung nerves; but that is cause enough to turn the mind of a sick child all awry, twisting out happiness and twisting in peevish, fretful feelings. ...
— The Primrose Ring • Ruth Sawyer

... She was fretful during the complicated process of her toilette and so hurt the feelings of her foster-daughter, that when Dan came to take her into the breakfast room, Nancy found an excuse for not ...
— The Inn at the Red Oak • Latta Griswold

... a certain old Irishman in a red flannel shirt, with his foot upon the hub, bending across the wheel and gesticulating in an endless discussion of politics or crops, while my brother and I were impatient to be off. Dolly was of course patient, for she had long since passed her fretful youth. If by any biological chance it had happened that she had been an old lady instead of a horse, she would have been the kind that spent her day in a rocker with her knitting. Any one who gave Dolly an excuse ...
— There's Pippins And Cheese To Come • Charles S. Brooks

... 124 Constantine Road. As she did so, a high, rasping, and fretful voice screamed to her from ...
— Wild Kitty • L. T. Meade

... privilege; but the latter end of May is generally fixed upon for the purpose. The attentive husband may judge, by certain prognostics, when the storm is at hand. If the lady grows uncommonly fretful, finds fault with the servants, is discontented with the children, and complains much of the nastiness of everything about her, these are symptoms which ought not to be neglected, yet they sometimes go off without ...
— McGuffey's Sixth Eclectic Reader • William Holmes McGuffey

... As for the purity and simplicity of the farmer's life, he knows very much better than to pin his faith to it. To him the farmer's house is too often a place where the mother is overworked, tired, wearied with constant annoyance, and made peevish and fretful. The conversation of hired men and young neighbors and brothers is not marked by refined delicacy and simplicity, as he understands these terms. At the end of all our preaching he will say, at least to himself, that this is probably the sort of talk that ...
— Village Improvements and Farm Villages • George E. Waring

... thee yesterday Stung by a fretful bee; And I the javelin suck'd away, And heal'd ...
— The Hesperides & Noble Numbers: Vol. 1 and 2 • Robert Herrick

... gracious me, Miss Summerson," she returned, justifying herself in a fretful but not angry manner, "how can it be otherwise? You know what Ma is—and I needn't make poor Pa more miserable ...
— Bleak House • Charles Dickens

... prescribed, as they were sweet; and one day, while a draught of manna was being prepared, which she thought too long delayed, she showed every sign of impatience, and threw herself from side to side like a fretful child; at last, throwing off the covering, she seized her physician by the coat with so much obstinacy that he was compelled to yield. The instant she obtained possession of the eagerly coveted cup she manifested the greatest delight, and ...
— The Memoirs of Napoleon Bonaparte • Bourrienne, Constant, and Stewarton

... which I cursed, and envied the withered condition of my comrades, whose bodies could not spare juice enough to supply a common issue, and were indeed proof against all manner of friction. The continual pain I felt made me fretful, and my peevishness was increased by the mortification of my pride in seeing those miserable wretches, whom a hard gale of wind would have scattered through the air like chaff, bear those toils with alacrity under which I was ...
— The Adventures of Roderick Random • Tobias Smollett

... garden, and in a moment Miss Celia appeared, pushing a wheeled chair in which sat her brother. A gay afghan covered the long legs, a broad-brimmed hat half hid the big eyes, and a discontented expression made the thin face as unattractive as the fretful ...
— St. Nicholas, Vol. 5, No. 5, March, 1878 • Various

... kind of a man your grandfather was, so it's no use my trying to gloss over his character—and your grandmother, ah, my poor mother, I was always fond of my mother, but she had a hard life, and it made her fretful and not much of a companion for a young girl. She thought the world was a hard place for a woman to live in, and the sooner I found it out and indulged in no vain hopes the better for me. I thought ...
— The Moving Finger • Mary Gaunt

... some of the situations very good: it amused me very well, and was exceedingly well acted. Glengall came to me afterwards to get criticisms on his play. I told him some of the faults, and he was not in the Sir Fretful line, but took it all very thankfully. At Roehampton on Sunday; Byng, Sir Robert Wilson, Sharpe,[16] and Luttrell. There is a joke of Luttrell's about Sharpe. He was a wholesale hatter formerly; having a dingy complexion, somebody ...
— The Greville Memoirs - A Journal of the Reigns of King George IV and King William - IV, Volume 1 (of 3) • Charles C. F. Greville

... would finish quite early, when Reginald would betake himself to the schoolroom and employ his idle time in making it nearly impossible for Ada and Phyllis to learn, by talking, laughing, teasing the canary, overturning everything in pursuing wasps, making Emily fretful by his disobedience, and then laughing at her, and, in short, proving his right to the title he had given himself at the end of the only letter he had written since he first went to school, and which he had subscribed, 'Your affectionate bother, R. Mohun.' So that, for their own ...
— Scenes and Characters • Charlotte M. Yonge

... it, Mysie. Maybe I hae frightened you; but, there now, dinna greet. I didna mean ony harm!" and he stroked and caressed her hair softly with his hands, or patted her shoulders at every word, as a mother does with a fretful child. ...
— The Underworld - The Story of Robert Sinclair, Miner • James C. Welsh

... more may unreservedly be said for the Indians while they were under the control of the fathers. That there were occasionally individual cases of harsh treatment is possible. The most loving and indulgent parents are now and again ill-tempered, fretful, or nervous. The fathers were men subject to all the limitations of other men. Granting these limitations and making due allowance for human imperfection, the rule of the fathers must still be admired for its wisdom and commended for its ...
— The Old Franciscan Missions Of California • George Wharton James

... shirt and trousers, but still copiously perspiring; and when he turned upon the prisoner a large meaningless countenance, that was (like Bardolph's) "all whelks and bubuckles," the dullest might have been prepared for grief. Here was a stupid man, sleepy with the heat and fretful at the interruption, whom neither appeal nor ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition - Vol. 1 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... proud boast of some men that they have 'got a wrinkle.' How elated then ought this individual to be who has got so many! and yet, judging from the fretful expression of his physiognomy, one would suppose that he is by no means in ...
— The Sketches of Seymour (Illustrated), Complete • Robert Seymour



Words linked to "Fretful" :   tense, querulous, complaining, itchy, fretfulness, complaintive, whiny, whiney, fidgety



Copyright © 2021 Free-Translator.com