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Stammer   Listen
noun
Stammer  n.  Defective utterance, or involuntary interruption of utterance; a stutter.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Stammer" Quotes from Famous Books



... sooner had all this news been digested than somebody discovered a diamond ring on Clara Tuttle's left hand. So Clara was surrounded and an explanation demanded. But before she could conquer her blushes and stammer out her news Max Longman came in from another room and, putting his arms about her, said, "Don't be afraid, girl of mine, I'm here." And so everybody knew then that it was Max, after all, ...
— Green Valley • Katharine Reynolds

... Lord, has made me overlook it till datum, and in return for my goodness she raises this outcry against me." And when I replied, "How does your lordship know that the witch raised such an outcry against you?" he first began to stammer, and then said, "Why, you yourself charged me thereon before the judge. But I bear you no anger therefor, and God knows that I pity you, who are a poor weak old man, and would gladly help you if I were able." Meanwhile ...
— Sidonia The Sorceress V2 • William Mienhold

... hands with the lady, and she said a great many very pretty things to him, which made the gallant little hero blush like a rose in June, and stammer so that he could ...
— All Aboard; or, Life on the Lake - A Sequel to "The Boat Club" • Oliver Optic

... Christian revelation. From the natural point of view the whole region of the dead is 'a land of darkness, without any order, where the light is as darkness.' The usual sources of human certainty fail us here. Reason is only able to stammer a peradventure. Experience and consciousness are silent. 'The simple senses' can only say that it looks as if Death were an end, the final Omega. Testimony there is none from any pale lips that have come back to unfold the secrets ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... should know what he was talking about and should have shown you he did, as foreign critics like to show it) were to say to you: 'He's the one, in this country, whom they consider the most perfect, isn't he?' Is it success to be the occasion of a young Englishman's having to stammer as you would have to stammer at such a moment for old England? No, no; success is to have made people wriggle to ...
— The Lesson of the Master • Henry James

... my breast. Then [I rose up] and walked to and fro in my abode, rejoicing and saying, "How can these things possibly be done to thy servant who is now speaking, whose heart made him to fly into foreign lands [where dwell] peoples who stammer in their speech? Assuredly it is a good and gracious thought [of the King] to deliver me from death [here], for thy Ka (i.e. double) will make my body to end [its existence] in ...
— The Literature of the Ancient Egyptians • E. A. Wallis Budge

... Churchill slowly, "you don't by any chance love some one else? What does that colour mean, Jacqueline? Don't stammer! ...
— Lewis Rand • Mary Johnston

... hat was still sitting under the shadow of the rock smoking, but he rose and threw away his cigar as the deputation of three advanced to address him. Peachy, in her very best Italian, began to stammer out an explanation and excuses. He listened for a moment or two, then ...
— The Jolliest School of All • Angela Brazil

... it became clear that the limit of the kitchen-maid's endurance had been reached. The obligation of going to the front door to "show in" a visitor was in itself so subversive of the fundamental order of things that it had thrown her faculties into hopeless disarray, and she could only stammer out, after various panting efforts at evocation, "His hat, mum, was ...
— The Early Short Fiction of Edith Wharton, Part 2 (of 10) • Edith Wharton

... said O'Roon to his friend. "Why do they build hotels that go round and round like catherine wheels? They'll take away my shield and break me. I can think and talk con-con-consec-sec-secutively, but I s-s-stammer with my feet. I've got to go on duty in three hours. The jig is up, Remsen. The jig is ...
— The Trimmed Lamp and Others • O Henry

... Newcomb's name should cause such a convulsion in the household, and when that gentleman finally arrived, and the family met him for the first time, it certainly seemed strange that they should all redden and stammer as if they had been "awkward nursery children ...
— The Governess • Julie M. Lippmann

... well aware why Helen had wished to marry him, and had been all along, without seeing anything in that for which to dislike her; he was quite without an answer to her present question, and could only cough and stammer, and reach for his handkerchief. The girl went on quickly, without waiting very long ...
— King Midas • Upton Sinclair

... it was not long since he had been a solitary child, moping apart from the rest. Why did people always say "Poor child!" whenever they were speaking about his real mother? Why did they do it? Why, even Peter Ronningen, when he was angry, would stammer out: "You ba-ba-bastard!" But Peer called the pock-marked good-wife at Troen "mother" and her bandy-legged husband "father," and lent the old man a hand wherever he was wanted—in the smithy or in the ...
— The Great Hunger • Johan Bojer

... voices which rose from that cellar-like place below the level of the street, repelled the country-bred lad. Were it not for the desperate urgency of his errand he never would have dared to enter. As it was, the fumes of alcohol and steaming, dirty clothes nearly choked him, and he could scarce stammer the name of "citizen Rateau" when a gruff voice ...
— The League of the Scarlet Pimpernel • Baroness Orczy

... and the long rod in his hand shook like a reed. Then he began to stammer something about the Bishop and the Archdeacon and his new orders and instructions—how the shelter had been taken over by other ...
— The Christian - A Story • Hall Caine

... came: the memories throng Of days that made the friendship strong— The oar he won, the ties he wore, His love of china, fairy lore, (And flappers); and his honest eyes; His stammer, his absurdities; His marmalade, his bitter beer, And all that made him ...
— Songs for a Little House • Christopher Morley

... cowardly girls huddles away behind you, Esmeralda, and leaves you to stammer, "Y-yes, sir, but you ...
— In the Riding-School; Chats With Esmeralda • Theo. Stephenson Browne

... for dreams. More than this. The new heaven is matched by a new earth. Men who see a new heaven make a new earth. In its cloud of steam, in a kind of splendid, silent stammer of praise and love, the new earth lifts itself to the new heaven, lifts up days out of nights to It, digs wells for winds under It, lights darkness with falling water, makes ice out of vapor, and heat out of cold, draws down Space with engines, makes years out of moments with ...
— The Voice of the Machines - An Introduction to the Twentieth Century • Gerald Stanley Lee

... public. So says WALTER. They mumble, stumble, hammer, stammer, falter! BESANT, why grumble at fate's distribution? To writers, sense; to speakers, elocution! Some books are bosh, but all experience teaches ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 101, September 26, 1891 • Various

... accompanied by one of her swift, half-frightened smiles; but she didn't wait for an answer. Before Chip could begin to stammer out an explanation that would give his point of view she was passing rapidly up the pathway, bordered with irises and peonies and bleeding-hearts, toward ...
— The Letter of the Contract • Basil King

... "a truly angel" was embracing her, and could only stammer out her thanks, while the other children ran to see the pretty spirit, and touch her soft dress, until she stood in a crowd of blue gowns laughing as they held up their gifts for her ...
— The Louisa Alcott Reader - A Supplementary Reader for the Fourth Year of School • Louisa M. Alcott

... almost blinded the little girl—tears of joy over her first success—she could hardly see what the coin was, but when she picked it up she managed to stammer that she ...
— Our Young Folks at Home and Abroad • Various

... upset his balance. Crossing the avenue Henri-Martin, going straight, towards the town hall at the corner of the rue de la Pompe, the good plumber, who was staggering more than a little, began to stutter and stammer ...
— Messengers of Evil - Being a Further Account of the Lures and Devices of Fantomas • Pierre Souvestre

... already had a family—with stepchildren, so to speak, who adored him. And what could he say to his mother's obsession, to which she came back again and again—her longing to see her grandchildren before she died? Madame Dupont waited only long enough for George to stammer out a few protestations, and then in the next breath to take them back; after which she proceeded to go ahead with the match. The family lawyers conferred together, and the terms of the settlement were worked out and agreed upon. It happened that immediately afterwards ...
— Damaged Goods - A novelization of the play "Les Avaries" • Upton Sinclair

... steely stare. "I leave it to you, Gov'ner," he continued to stammer at length. "S'y you was me and I was ...
— Red Masquerade • Louis Joseph Vance

... its way through a stammer which expressed the struggle of courtesy against denunciation. "Come—hang it all!" said he. "It wasn't my romance.... Oh, well, perhaps it wasn't yours either. Only—play fair, Miss Dickenson. Six of the one and half a dozen of the ...
— When Ghost Meets Ghost • William Frend De Morgan

... more transcendent sense, Hearing unchecked, and unimpeded sight. If we who walk now, then should wing the air, Who stammer now, then should discard the voice, Who grope now, then should see with other sight, And send ...
— Nero • Stephen Phillips

... was endeavoring to stammer through a few lines of some Greek play, and at last paused, ...
— Louis' School Days - A Story for Boys • E. J. May

... and remained still long enough for the astonished Powell to stammer out an indistinct: "What do you mean? I don't understand." Then, with a low 'Good-night' glided a few steps, and sank through the shadow of the companion into the lamplight below which did not reach higher than the turn of ...
— Chance • Joseph Conrad

... to rise and place stools near the stove, but whether he was quite drunk or whether some narcotic had been mixed with the brandy, he fell back on his seat, trying to stammer out ...
— CELEBRATED CRIMES, COMPLETE - VANINKA • ALEXANDRE DUMAS, PERE

... words Allecto's wrath blazed out. But amid his utterance a quick shudder overruns his limbs; his eyes are fixed in horror; so thickly hiss the snakes of the Fury, so vast her form expands. Then rolling her fiery eyes, she thrust him back as he would stammer out more, raised two serpents in her hair, and, sounding her whip, resumed ...
— The Aeneid of Virgil • Virgil

... he turned language into ignoble clay, he made from it men and women that live. He is the most Shakespearian creature since Shakespeare. If Shakespeare could sing with myriad lips, Browning could stammer through a thousand mouths. Even now, as I am speaking, and speaking not against him but for him, there glides through the room the pageant of his persons. There, creeps Fra Lippo Lippi with his cheeks still burning from some girl's hot ...
— Intentions • Oscar Wilde

... human life. The thought steals over us that we, too, are liable at any moment to be cut down in the midst of our labors. This liability is increased by the amount of labor which necessarily devolves upon us. Now we are only two in number. As for myself I am only beginning to stammer in this difficult language. This, too, in a field where there is labor enough to be done to employ all the men you can send us. You will not think it strange ...
— Forty Years in South China - The Life of Rev. John Van Nest Talmage, D.D. • Rev. John Gerardus Fagg

... shall see her receiving my guests with quite a calm, grand manner. Miss Lucy and I will have to look about us, and polish up all our best airs and graces lest we should be thrown into the shade. Still, Polly, there is a little flutter, a little tendency to stammer now and then, and even, to lisp as you lisped when you were six ...
— Villette • Charlotte Bronte

... begun to stammer in the last sentence, suddenly self-conscious again. She told him where her chair was on deck, and next minute, without another word, he was half-way along the alley-way, leaving the tea-things where they were. Then he turned back and spoke from ...
— Captivity • M. Leonora Eyles

... these words, but I was not prepared to answer him, and in the rush of his indignant accusation my defence was swept down, and I could only stammer out— ...
— To The West • George Manville Fenn

... should have made a Bow; that's very well, remember to do so; when you speak, don't speak fast, stammer, or speak in your Throat, but use yourself to pronounce your Words distinctly and clearly. If you pass by any ancient Person, a Magistrate, a Minister, or Doctor, or any Person of Figure, be sure to pull off your Hat, and make your Reverence: ...
— Colloquies of Erasmus, Volume I. • Erasmus

... humorous points which, if they do not create merriment, may yield some slight amusement. The pedant's endeavours to make a philosopher of his child are sufficiently ludicrous. He is delighted to find that the infant has the wart of Cicero and the very neck of Alexander, and hopes that he may come to stammer like Demosthenes, 'and in time arrive at many other defects of famous men.' As the boy grows up his father invents for him a geographical suit of clothes, and stamps his gingerbread with the letters of the Greek alphabet, which proved ...
— The Age of Pope - (1700-1744) • John Dennis

... polish, and instead of introducing artfully his rugged lines, and to serve a particular purpose, had probably seldom, and never but by accident, composed a smooth one. Such has been the versification of the earliest poets in every country. Children lisp, at first, and stammer; but, in time, their speech becomes fluent, and, if they ...
— The Iliad of Homer - Translated into English Blank Verse • Homer

... honor, the French lesson was a confused jumble. She heard but dimly the rise and fall of Professor Fontaine's voice as he conducted the lesson, and when he called upon her to recite she stared at him dazedly and finally managed to stammer that she was ...
— Marjorie Dean High School Freshman • Pauline Lester

... so. The poor fellow wanted to learn to stammer in his Testament, and Letty, like any true-hearted wife, had given him the little assistance she could render. The whipping failed of its intended effect, however. Going one evening, at a late hour, into Letty's cabin, I found George seated by her on the floor, ...
— Autographs for Freedom, Volume 2 (of 2) (1854) • Various

... that I had inadvertently fallen asleep, that I was usually a wide-awake citizen of the land that Lafayette went to save, that I wanted my dinner, and would like to get out. I walked down near enough to the gate to see the policeman, but my courage failed. Before I could stammer out half that explanation to him in his trifling language (which foreigners are mockingly told is the best in the world for conversation), he would either have slipped his hateful rapier through my body, or have raised ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... vocal organs is wanting, with those individuals that stammer, or who have an impediment in their speech. Some parts may be more developed than others, but they generally are but imperfectly under the control of the will, and assume an irregular and rapid movement, while other parts, the motions ...
— A Treatise on Anatomy, Physiology, and Hygiene (Revised Edition) • Calvin Cutter

... She had come to him several times for a light, or to apologise for the imaginary depredations of her poodle; but his mouth was closed in the presence of so superior a being, his French promptly left him, and he could only stare and stammer until she was gone. The slenderness of their intercourse did not prevent him from throwing out insinuations of a very glorious order when he was safely alone ...
— New Arabian Nights • Robert Louis Stevenson

... self-conceit to hope one is better company than Maria! But come, before we fall under the dominion of the Queen of the West Wing, I have a secret for you.' Then, after a longer stammer than usual, 'How should you like a ...
— Hopes and Fears - scenes from the life of a spinster • Charlotte M. Yonge

... one of these absences that Jim Spalding, the old timber-jack, told Mrs. Gaynor in his abashed stammer that Mark King had showed up while they were gone. Gloria, on her way to her room, whirled and came back, and extracted the tale in its entirety, pumping it out of the brief, few-worded old Spalding in jerky details. King had appeared late yesterday afternoon, coming ...
— The Everlasting Whisper • Jackson Gregory

... I had to play the part of a rich man, to squander money, to give myself airs. When one puts on the semblance of anything for a time, it will soon become a portion of our nature. Imitate a stutterer for a while, and you will have to keep diligent watch over yourself not to stammer in earnest. I fell in love, and was on the point of changing into a totally different person; for my passion was sincere and ardent. But new distress. The noble being who soon became my wife, could never give me her heart. The strongest passion must die away ...
— The Old Man of the Mountain, The Lovecharm and Pietro of Abano - Tales from the German of Tieck • Ludwig Tieck

... I cried on first entering the cars, and now—would you believe it?—I got terribly embarrassed. It seemed as if everything I did or said made matters worse. I was scarcely able to stammer, 'My aunt—' ...
— Lippincott's Magazine Of Popular Literature And Science, April 1875, Vol. XV., No. 88 • Various

... the old boiler became cracked?" He was taken aback; his muddled brain did not quite comprehend the situation, but at last he managed to stammer out that he did not know, and Mrs. ...
— Catharine Furze • Mark Rutherford

... the advance-guard of humanity, the herald of all progress; how often hast thou betrayed this high commission! Fain would the tongue in clear, triumphant accents draw example from thy story, to encourage the hearts of those who almost faint and die beneath the old oppressions. But we must stammer and blush when we speak of many things. I take pride here, that I can really say the liberty of the press works well, and that checks and balances are found naturally which suffice to its government. I can say that the minds of our people are alert, and that talent has a free chance ...
— At Home And Abroad - Or, Things And Thoughts In America and Europe • Margaret Fuller Ossoli

... him for the little he might have done. He was so imbued with the idea of his helplessness, that he could only stammer a few broken sentences she seemed ...
— Winding Paths • Gertrude Page

... did you bleed? and must I stammer out, Nay, I blush indeed, fair lord, only to rend My sleeve up to my shoulder, ...
— The Defence of Guenevere and Other Poems • William Morris

... should therefore be put to death." The plates, as proposed by the soothsayer, were placed before the child Moses, who immediately seized upon the fire, and put it into his mouth, which caused him henceforward to stammer in ...
— Flowers from a Persian Garden and Other Papers • W. A. Clouston

... letter from her bosom, and quickly approaching Alicia, placed it unnoticed in her hand. The banker's wife flushed and then turned pale. She understood. Annie would spare her. Her lips parted to protest. Even she was taken back by such an exhibition of unselfishness as this. She began to stammer thanks. ...
— The Third Degree - A Narrative of Metropolitan Life • Charles Klein and Arthur Hornblow

... apparently of respectable antecedents. The first menace of danger had come from Mr. Jarrott himself, who had unexpectedly invited his intelligent employee to lunch with him at a club, in order to talk over a commission with which Strange was to be intrusted. On this occasion he was able to stammer his way out of the invitation; but when later, Mr. Skinner, the second partner, made a like proposal, he was caught without an excuse, being obliged, with some confusion, to eat his meal in a fashionable restaurant in the Calle Florida. Oddly enough, both his refusal on the one ...
— The Wild Olive • Basil King

... heroic effort. He began to stammer, checked himself, and at last succeeded in imposing coherence ...
— Coquette • Frank Swinnerton

... in that self-same moment Hardy realized how the low-down strategy which he had perpetrated upon his employer had fallen upon his own head a thousandfold. But before he could stammer his apologies, Kitty Bonnair stood before him—the same Kitty, and smiling as he had often seen her ...
— Hidden Water • Dane Coolidge

... With a slight stammer but otherwise giving no evidence of the effect made upon him by the passionate intensity with which she had urged this plea, he assured her that his errand was important, but one so quickly told that it would delay her but a moment. "But first," said he, with very natural ...
— Initials Only • Anna Katharine Green

... musicians. This person (since deceased, and by profession a clerk) suffered from nervousness so excessive that, despite a fair knowledge of music, the fact of putting his hands upon the keys produced a maddening sort of stammer, let alone a notable tendency to strike wrong notes and miss his octaves; peculiarities of which he was so morbidly conscious that it was only an accident which revealed to me, after years of acquaintance, that he ever played the piano at all. Yet I know as a fact that this poor blundering ...
— Hortus Vitae - Essays on the Gardening of Life • Violet Paget, AKA Vernon Lee

... They are shadows and Chimeraes, proceeding of some formelesse conceptions, which they cannot distinguish or resolve within, and by consequence are not able to produce them in as-much as they understand not themselves: And if you but marke their earnestnesse, and how they stammer and labour at the point of their deliverle, you would deeme that what they go withall, is but a conceiving, and therefore nothing neere downelying; and that they doe but licke that imperfect and shapelesse lump of matter. ...
— Literary and Philosophical Essays • Various

... amusement, conceit, vanity, pity, and joy in ostentation; these, also, exactly commensurable with his advantage. Strange and sad that this should be so; but so it is. French brings out the worst in all of us—all, I mean, but the few, the lamentably far too few, who cannot aspire to stammer some ...
— And Even Now - Essays • Max Beerbohm

... Orion, who was gazing at him with a sinister light in his eyes. "How can my lord doubt it? Your respected father has known me these thirty years, and do you suppose that I—I do not know the Syrian? Why, who in Memphis can stammer to compare with him? And has he not killed half my children with your wild young horses?—Half killed every one of my children I mean—half killed them, I say, with fright. They are all still alive and well, God preserve them, but none the better ...
— Uarda • Georg Ebers

... with the land of the Innis Fail, O and O! there is friendship here, there is song." But they smile to your face, when you turn they stammer and rail And the song of the singer has ...
— Fires of Driftwood • Isabel Ecclestone Mackay

... Then she bent over and murmured smilingly to Zuilika: "I shall make a bigger nincompoop of this big, fair sap-head than Heaven already has done before he leaves here, just for the sake of seeing him stammer and blush!" ...
— Cleek, the Master Detective • Thomas W. Hanshew

... trammelled, thus condemned to Flattery's trebles, He toils through all, still trembling to be wrong: For fear some noble thoughts, like heavenly rebels, Should rise up in high treason to his brain, He sings, as the Athenian spoke, with pebbles In's mouth, lest Truth should stammer through his strain. But out of the long file of sonneteers There shall be some who will not sing in vain, And he, their Prince, shall rank among my peers,[307] And Love shall be his torment; but his grief Shall make an immortality ...
— The Works of Lord Byron, Volume 4 • Lord Byron

... new picture, Mr. Bopp inspected every feature of the countenance so near his own; and, as his admiration "grew by what it fed on," he fell into a chronic state of stammer and blush; for the frank eyes were very kind, the smooth cheeks reflected a pretty shade of his own crimson, and the smiling lips seemed constantly suggesting, with mute eloquence, that they were made for kissing, ...
— On Picket Duty and Other Tales • Louisa May Alcott

... world—the flattering, the soothing, the complimenting. Virtues and vices alike driving us more or less out of the straight line; and, blindfolded by habit, we know not that we are walking circuitously. And they are not the worst among us, perhaps, who walk so deviatingly—seeing, knowing—those that stammer out nightly ere they rest, in confession, their fears that they have been acting if not speaking the untrue thing, and praying for strength in their infirmity, and more simplicity of heart; and would in their penitence shun the concourse that besets them, and hide their heads ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 56, Number 348 • Various

... thine origin? Is he not sailing Lost like thyself on an ocean unknown, and is he not guided By the same stars that guide thee? Why shouldst thou hate then thy brother? Hateth he thee, forgive! For 'tis sweet to stammer one letter Of the Eternal's language;—on earth it is called Forgiveness! Knowest thou Him, who forgave, with the crown of thorns round his temples? Earnestly prayed for his foes, for his murderers? Say, dost thou know him? Ah! thou confessest his name, so follow likewise his example, Think of thy ...
— The Song of Hiawatha - An Epic Poem • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

... meetings last night. See, I have a pass for all such assemblies, signed by some dolt who cannot even spell the name he assumes—'Pom-de-Tair.' A commissary of police sat yawning at the end of the orchestra, his secretary by his side, while the orators stammer out fragments of would-be thunderbolts. Commissary of police yawns more wearily than before, secretary disdains to use his pen, seizes his penknife and pares his nails. Up rises a wild-haired, weak-limbed silhouette of a man, and affecting ...
— The Parisians, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... French and Greek and Latin, And not acquire, as well, a priggish mien, If you can feel the touch of silk and satin Without despising calico and jean; If you can ply a saw and use a hammer, Can do a man's work when the need occurs, Can sing when asked, without excuse or stammer, Can rise above unfriendly ...
— Poems Teachers Ask For, Book Two • Various

... laconic statement carefully, expecting to see Henshaw turn pale and stammer in terror. Instead, the captain regarded McTee with quietly ...
— Harrigan • Max Brand

... God in His infinite goodness has given me a clear insight into the deep mysteries of Charity. If I could but express what I know, you would hear a heavenly music; but alas! I can only stammer like a child, and if God's own words were not my support, I should be tempted to beg leave to hold my peace. When the Divine Master tells me to give to whosoever asks of me, and to let what is mine be taken without asking it again, ...
— The Story of a Soul (L'Histoire d'une Ame): The Autobiography of St. Therese of Lisieux • Therese Martin (of Lisieux)

... train the roll of stammers into settling upon the words immediately preceding the effective one; by which means the key-note of the jest or sarcasm, benefiting by the sudden liberation of his embargoed voice, was delivered with the force of a pistol shot. That stammer was worth an annuity to him as an ally of his wit. Firing under cover of that advantage, he did triple execution; for, in the first place, the distressing sympathy of the hearers with his distress of utterance won for him unavoidably the silence of deep attention; and then, ...
— Biographical Essays • Thomas de Quincey

... ye out a walie hammer; About the knottit buttress clam'er; Alang the steep roof stoyt an' stammer, A gate mischancy; On the aul' spire, the bells' hie ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 14 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... hand and inquire after my health in so hearty, so honest a fashion that I cannot bear to look him in the face. And as he beams on me and throws his arm over my shoulder, I can only blush and shift from one foot to the other and stammer out some excuse for hurrying away. Passers-by stop and admire the man's affection and concern for one who is evidently some poor devil of a relation from the country. One Sunday he waylaid me on Riverside Drive and introduced me to his wife as one of his ...
— The Patient Observer - And His Friends • Simeon Strunsky

... have not dropped on some Saturday or other a Caine or a Barclay; to have it restored to me a moment later by a courteous fellow-passenger—courteous, but with a smile of gentle pity in his eye as he glimpsed the author's name. "Thanks very much," I would stammer, blushing guiltily, and perhaps I would babble about a sick friend to whom I was taking them, or that I was running out of paper-weights. But he never believed me. He knew that he would have ...
— Not that it Matters • A. A. Milne

... she were dreaming. How often had she wished she might learn to ride—more often than ever since Blanche's coming! She could hardly find words to stammer out her thanks, but her kind friends could see that she was surprised and delighted ...
— Hunter's Marjory - A Story for Girls • Margaret Bruce Clarke

... wished to see her first among living celebrities; her charm fascinated Sheridan, and overcame the prejudice of Lamb; even Peter Pindar wrote verse in her praise. From the age of eighteen she was wooed on and off the stage, where her slight stammer hindered her complete success; but no breath of scandal tarnished her name. Had John Kemble, the hero of 'A Simple Story', proposed to her, she probably would have married him. Mrs. Butler records that her uncle John once asked ...
— The Works of Lord Byron: Letters and Journals, Volume 2. • Lord Byron

... put you in your chair like a queen and wait on you," he said with a soft boyish stammer; "but I am too dazed with happiness to be ...
— Homespun Tales • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... much more likely to reissue thence than was one of the frail nuns built into the wall in the old times likely to come stepping out again. Bobby has at length ceased to offer me every object which it devolves upon him to hand me, with a quavering voice and a prolonged stammer, since, though I was at first excellently vulnerable by this weapon of offense, I am now becoming hornily hard and indifferent to it. We have stepped over the boundaries of ...
— Nancy - A Novel • Rhoda Broughton

... frequently afterwards, sent advice of this to the king, who ordered the children to be brought before him, in order that he himself might be a witness to the truth of what was told him; and accordingly both of them began, in his presence, to stammer out the sounds above mentioned. Nothing now was wanting but to ascertain what nation it was that used this word; and it was found that the Phrygians called bread by this name. From this time they were allowed the honour of antiquity, or rather ...
— The Ancient History of the Egyptians, Carthaginians, Assyrians, • Charles Rollin

... Sometimes there was a paternal explosion because Bruce liked to murmur vaguely of "dandy chances in Manila," or because Julie, pretty, excitable, and sixteen, had an occasional dose of stage fever, and would stammer desperately between convulsive sobs that she wasn't half as much afraid of "the terrible temptations of the life" as she was afraid of dying a poky old maid in Weston. In short, the home was crowded, the Pagets were poor, and every one of the seven possessed a spirited ...
— Mother • Kathleen Norris

... helped, consoled, exalted by the reflection: Hic mecum habitant ... Homerus, Plato, Aristoteles. And were one in a moment of inadvertence to inquire of him why he occupied himself with Greek, he might perchance stammer (like Dominie Sampson) an almost inarticulate reply; but more probably he would be stricken speechless by the enormous outrage of the request, and the reason of his devotion would be hidden ...
— The Legacy of Greece • Various

... shake of the head which gave Philammon courage to stammer out a courteous refusal. The Amal swore an oath at him which made the cloister ring again, and with a quiet shove of his heavy hand, sent him staggering half across the ...
— Hypatia - or, New Foes with an Old Face • Charles Kingsley

... you. My home is in Swainboro', this state—a little town. You might know where it is? And my real name ain't La Mode, neither. I taken it out of a book—the La Mode part—and I always did think Blanche was an awful sweet name for a girl. But my real name is Gussie Stammer. Good night, mister. I'm much obliged to you fer listenin', and I ain't goin' to disturb you no more with my cryin' if I kin ...
— The Escape of Mr. Trimm - His Plight and other Plights • Irvin S. Cobb

... he knew who I was! whilst I . . . I had to pass my hand once or twice over my forehead and to close and reopen my eyes several times, for, of a truth, it all seemed like a dream. I tried to stammer out a question or two, but I could only gasp, and the lovely Angele appeared highly amused ...
— Castles in the Air • Baroness Emmuska Orczy

... I look'd—so well knowing The Colonel's opinions—my cheeks were quite glowing; I stammer'd out something—nay, even half named The LEGITIMATE semptress, when, loud, he exclaimed, "Yes, yes, by the stiching 'tis plain to be seen It was made by that B*rb*n**t b—h, VIOTORINE!" What a word for a hero, ...
— The Humourous Poetry of the English Language • James Parton

... had ebbed surged slowly back again. It surged back under the transparent white skin, as red wine fills a glass. Her lips parted to stammer the confession that she had no clothes except those she wore; but she couldn't utter ...
— The Dust Flower • Basil King

... sudden suspicion that Francoise had been robbing her, that she had set a trap to make certain, and had caught her betrayer red-handed; and being in the habit, when she made up a game of cards by herself, of playing her own and her adversary's hands at once, she would first stammer out Francoise's awkward apologies, and then reply to them with such a fiery indignation that any of us who happened to intrude upon her at one of these moments would find her bathed in perspiration, her eyes blazing, her false hair pushed awry and exposing ...
— Swann's Way - (vol. 1 of Remembrance of Things Past) • Marcel Proust

... when he saw him, and he began to stammer out, "Oh, dear me! is it you? Pray how did you sleep last night? Did you hear or see anything in the dead of ...
— The Fairy Book - The Best Popular Stories Selected and Rendered Anew • Dinah Maria Mulock (AKA Miss Mulock)

... don't understand anything by it! It's a piece of hopeless legal gibberish to me. I stammer out some attempt at an answer, and see Baboo looking at me with a pitying, almost reproachful, glance. "Didn't I," he seems to say, "explain it all to you once at dinner? Do you really mean to say that you've forgotten the way in ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari Volume 98, January 4, 1890 • Various

... by a glassy ocean— Stammer strange songs amid an alien host? Or shall I not, refusing such promotion, Bequeath to London my ...
— Twenty • Stella Benson

... little later, his eyes reddened with tears, his hair rumpled, his face flushed. He seemed like a man awed by an entirely new experience. He could not speak, he could only stammer brokenly:— ...
— The Romance of a Christmas Card • Kate Douglas Wiggin

... angry stammer in reply; and she suppressed her smile, but felt triumphant in having hit the mark. Unready at retort, he gathered himself up, and said: 'Well, Ave, I have only this to say, that if you choose to support that boy in his impertinences, there will be no bearing it; and I shall see what ...
— The Trial - or, More Links of the Daisy Chain • Charlotte M. Yonge

... "honesty is the best policy." But these are acquired habits of thinking. The child has no natural love of truth, as is experienced by all who have the least acquaintance with early youth. If they are charged with a fault while they can hardly speak, the first words they stammer forth are a falsehood to excuse it. Nor is this all: the temptation of attracting attention, the pleasure of enjoying importance, the desire to escape from an unpleasing task, or accomplish a holiday, will at any time overcome the sentiment of truth, so weak is ...
— Letters On Demonology And Witchcraft • Sir Walter Scott

... madness, till, restored by him to their former temper and wits, they became his friends, worshippers, and disciples. Four hundred other men and women fell into strange ecstasies, foamed at the mouth, and recounted their visions of the Lion of Judah, while infants, who could scarcely stammer out a syllable plainly, repeated the name of Sabbatai, the Messiah; being possessed, and voices sounding from their stomachs and entrails. Such reports, bruited through the world by the foreign ambassadors at Smyrna, the clerks of the English and ...
— Dreamers of the Ghetto • I. Zangwill

... getting confused again, and he began to stammer. Mr. Cavendish wondered that, in some way, Mr. Balfour did not come to the relief of his witness, but he sat perfectly quiet, and apparently unconcerned. Mr. Cavendish rummaged among his papers, and withdrew two letters. These he handed to the witness. "Now," said he, "will the witness ...
— Sevenoaks • J. G. Holland

... in nothing of the president's speech beyond the acceptance of his offer, and, pale with relief, he tried to stammer his thanks and his devotion to his chosen cause. He made no attempt to contradict the president's confident prophecies; he only made the greatest possible haste to the tower-rooms which were to be his home. His eyes filled with thankfulness at his lot as he paced about them, and, ...
— Hillsboro People • Dorothy Canfield

... throttling hands of death at strife, Ground he at grammar; Still, through the rattle, parts of speech were rife; While he could stammer He settled Hoti's business—let it be— Properly based Oun Gave us the doctrine of the enclitic De, Dead from ...
— The Autocrat of the Breakfast-Table • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr. (The Physician and Poet not the Jurist)

... the first time in his life. He had been struck below the belt by a good-natured giant. The best he could do, as Bacon shuffled calmly out, was to stammer: "Will some one please sing?" And while they sang, he stood in deep thought. Just as the last verse was quivering into silence, the full, deep tones of Radbourn's voice rose above the bustle of feet and clatter ...
— Other Main-Travelled Roads • Hamlin Garland

... significance in a phrase because of its environment. Thus the anecdote of the servant who had been instructed to summon the visiting English nobleman by tapping on his bedroom door and inquiring, "My lord, have you yet risen?" and who could only stammer, "My God! ain't you up yet?" Or the anecdote of the minister who in a sermon on the Parable of the Prodigal Son told how a young man living dissolutely in a city had been compelled to send to the pawnbroker first his overcoat, next his suit, next ...
— The Century Vocabulary Builder • Creever & Bachelor

... considerations ever consent to go into a room in the dark by himself, being extremely imaginative and nervous; and that on one occasion when he was asked what he expected to befall him, he said with a shudder and a stammer: "To fall over a mangled corpse, squish! ...
— Hugh - Memoirs of a Brother • Arthur Christopher Benson

... him, and reining his horse up under a wide spreading butternut tree, which grew upon the river bank, he sprang out and pretended to be busy with some part of the harness, while he astonished Jerrie by bursting out, without the least stammer, he was so earnest and so excited: 'I've something to say to you, Jerrie, and I may as well say it now as any time, and know the worst, or the best. I can't bear the suspense any longer, and I got out of the cart so as to stand where I could look ...
— Tracy Park • Mary Jane Holmes

... he doesn't stammer either. I'll try presently. Positively, if he wore spectacles and a wig of your hair, ...
— Fashionable Philosophy - and Other Sketches • Laurence Oliphant

... good-for-nothing chorus-girl. It was a loss far more subtle. The recognition of it lamed Robert Stonehouse, knocked the power out of him, as though someone had struck and paralysed a vital nerve centre. He could only stammer futilely: ...
— The Dark House • I. A. R. Wylie

... Hilary looked very uncomfortable. With an apologetic air he began to stammer something about Parish Councils. I was not to be diverted by any such maneuver. It was impossible that he could really wish to ...
— Dolly Dialogues • Anthony Hope

... good talker on a thousand and one subjects, a thinker and psychologist. Psychology is his strong point. He argues brilliantly on the subject, yet I need only look at him to upset his thesis, to make him stammer and redden. ...
— Secret Memoirs: The Story of Louise, Crown Princess • Henry W. Fischer

... was such a surprise to Garnett that for the moment he could only stammer out—"You consent then? I may go and ...
— The Hermit and the Wild Woman and Other Stories • Edith Wharton

... gesture with his hands, did not frown or clench his fists, but remained impassively calm. His words, however, cut Rrisa like knives. The orderly remained trembling and sweating, with a piteous expression. Finally he managed to stammer: ...
— The Flying Legion • George Allan England

... managed to do, and lived to see Kirstie grow to be a decent, religiously minded young woman. Nor did the lass want for good looks in a sober way, nor for wit when it came to reading books; but in speech she was shy beyond reason, and would turn red and stammer if a stranger but addressed her. I think she could never forget that her birth had been on the wrong side of the blanket, and, supposing folks to be pitying her for it, sought to avoid them and ...
— Two Sides of the Face - Midwinter Tales • Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... hadn't any chin, Her hands were rough, her feet she turned invariably in; Her general form was German, By which I mean that you Her waist could not determine To within a foot or two: And not only did she stammer, But she used the kind of grammar That is called, for sake ...
— Grimm Tales Made Gay • Guy Wetmore Carryl

... in bewilderment; then, as the captain's meaning dawned upon him, he stepped forward impulsively and, seizing his hand, began to stammer out incoherent thanks. ...
— At Sunwich Port, Complete • W.W. Jacobs

... provision of anecdote and allusion. I find myself somewhat in the position of Heine, who had prepared an elaborate oration for his first interview with Goethe, and when the awful moment arrived could only stammer out that the cherries on the road to Weimar were uncommonly ...
— Modern Eloquence: Vol II, After-Dinner Speeches E-O • Various

... to repeat themselves by the fewness of their words, also escapes from it. When they grow up and have ideas which are beyond their powers of expression, especially in writing, tautology begins to appear. In like manner when language is 'contaminated' by philosophy it is apt to become awkward, to stammer and repeat itself, to lose its flow and freedom. No philosophical writer with the exception of Plato, who is himself not free from tautology, and perhaps Bacon, has attained to any high degree ...
— Cratylus • Plato

... said, and hesitated in the back of the box till Jasper came over to him with an anxious question. Then he began to stammer nervously. "Don't tell her, ...
— The Branding Iron • Katharine Newlin Burt

... retorted the Moor. "Do Englishmen blush and stammer when they tell the truth? Tell me the truth now. Do you know where the ...
— The Middy and the Moors - An Algerine Story • R.M. Ballantyne

... put a bold face upon the matter and walked into the Giant's room to thank him for his lodging. The Giant started when he saw him, and began to stammer out: "Oh! dear me; is it you? Pray, how did you sleep last night? Did you hear or see anything in the ...
— The Junior Classics, Volume 1 • Willam Patten

... life; yet far from this, we are ill-used, harassed with law-suits, delivered over to the scorn of stripling orators. Our minds and bodies being ravaged with age, Posidon should protect us, yet we have no other support than a staff. When standing before the judge, we can scarcely stammer forth the fewest words, and of justice we see but its barest shadow, whereas the accuser, desirous of conciliating the younger men, overwhelms us with his ready rhetoric; he drags us before the judge, ...
— The Eleven Comedies - Vol. I • Aristophanes et al

... that night, and when I returned to my room I thoughtlessly opened the door of her apartment instead of that of my own. The beautiful woman was reading by the light of the lamp and started when she saw me. I was so embarrassed by my mistake that for a moment I could only stammer unintelligible words. My confusion was so evident that she could not doubt for a moment that I had made a mistake. I turned to the door, intent upon relieving her of my presence as quickly as possible, when she said ...
— Library of the World's Best Mystery and Detective Stories • Edited by Julian Hawthorne

... the place of sense.' He is six years old, he reads English and Italian, and writes without lines, and shall I send you a poem of his for 'illumination'? His poems are far before mine, the very prattle of the angels, when they stammer at first and are not sure of the pronunciation of e's and i's in the spiritual heavens (see Swedenborg). Really he is a sweet good child, and I am not bearable in my conceit of him, as you see! My thankful regards to your mother, whom I shall hope to meet with you, and ...
— The Letters of Elizabeth Barrett Browning, Volume II • Elizabeth Barrett Browning

... be too brutally direct to shatter information about silk at one shilling the yard with a prayer for matrimonial freedom. The girl would be shocked—he could see her—she would stare at him, and suddenly grow red in the face and stammer; and he would be forced to trail through a lengthy, precise explanation of this matter which was not at all precise to himself. Furthermore, certain obscure emotions rendered him unwilling to be sundered from ...
— Here are Ladies • James Stephens

... desire; he enjoyed a calm existence, full of comforts; in his studio, almost as splendid as a palace, the facade of which was reproduced in the illustrated magazines, he had a wife who was convinced of his genius and a daughter who was almost a woman and who made the troop of his intimate pupils stammer with embarrassment. The only evidences of his Bohemian past that remained were his soft felt hats, his long beard, his tangled hair and a certain carelessness in his dress; but when his position as a "national celebrity" demanded it, he took out of his wardrobe a dress suit with the lapel covered ...
— Woman Triumphant - (La Maja Desnuda) • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... impossible for me to recognize him. I was very anxious to do so in view of the trouble the officer had taken to come away out on the picket line, in the middle of the night, to see me, but I just couldn't, and began to stammer a sort of apology about the darkness of the night hindering a prompt recognition, when the "unknown" gave his head a slant to one side, and, in his never forgettable voice, spoke thus to Keeley: "I told you ...
— The Story of a Common Soldier of Army Life in the Civil War, 1861-1865 • Leander Stillwell

... details could have kept him from carrying out his purpose; but together they were unromantic. How could he adjure her to tell him for God's sake whether or not she was in love with any one when he saw she was afraid that something was burning on the stove? He could only stammer out excuses for having come. Inventing on the spot new and incoherent directions for the treatment of Mrs. Fay, he took himself away ...
— The Side Of The Angels - A Novel • Basil King

... is what you want!" He threw down his hat and stick upon the green-baize-covered table, took one of the Windsor chairs, and crashed it down beside the sofa, and planted his hulking big body on it, and reached out and captured the thin wrist of his victim, who mustered breath to stammer: ...
— The Dop Doctor • Clotilde Inez Mary Graves

... the maid for mate, But thou shalt die, thou knight enamour'd; So make thy shrift 'neath the linden straight, The little birds shall hear it stammer'd. ...
— Proud Signild - and Other Ballads • Thomas J. Wise

... fierce fire in her bold black eye. "Am I deceived in you both?" quoth she. "If one spark of her father's spirit lives In this girl here—so, this Leigh, Ralph Leigh, Let us hear what counsel the springald gives." Then I stammer'd, somewhat taken aback— (Simon, you ale-swiller, pass ...
— Poems • Adam Lindsay Gordon

... it, Dora?" she asked, kindly. Dora, who could only stammer an embarrassed reply, held out the letter. Then she stood with toes turned in, and both hands fumbling nervously with her belt ribbon, while Betty broke ...
— The Little Colonel: Maid of Honor • Annie Fellows Johnston

... children," he said, with a slight stammer that somehow lent an additional kindliness to his tone, "what has the day's work been? You first, Herr Graf," he added, turning to the Count. "I suppose that you have made a thousand ...
— A Cigarette-Maker's Romance • F. Marion Crawford

... laws of perspective were known. None knew how to draw anything correctly. No color-harmonies had been thought of. These men must needs stammer when they tried to express themselves; but as much greater as thought is than the mere expression of it so much greater are many of their works, in the true sense, than the mass of pictures that make up our exhibitions of ...
— Barbara's Heritage - Young Americans Among the Old Italian Masters • Deristhe L. Hoyt

... know what I think of it? I think they are nothing but shadows of some imperfect images and conceptions that they know not what to make of within, nor consequently bring out; they do not yet themselves understand what they would be at, and if you but observe how they haggle and stammer upon the point of parturition, you will soon conclude, that their labour is not to delivery, but about conception, and that they are but licking their formless embryo. For my part, I hold, and Socrates commands it, that ...
— The Essays of Montaigne, Complete • Michel de Montaigne

... stammer out thanks, and promises of explaining the whole of Robson's peculations (little he knew the ...
— Dynevor Terrace (Vol. II) • Charlotte M. Yonge

... There was a stammer, a hesitation, a slight attempt to explain, and then the truth came out. He had stolen the extra tickets from two fellow-laborers only a few minutes before, and had not reflected upon the difficulties of the situation. I gave him some good advice, required him to ...
— Camp-Fire and Cotton-Field • Thomas W. Knox

... stuttered for pleasure and profit ever since I discovered the efficacy of it at school. When I didn't know my lesson one day I put on a stammer, and my bub—bub—bubbing, as the farmer calls it, made the master so uncomfortable that, ever afterwards, at the first sign of it he passed me over. That's why I'm ...
— Round the World in Seven Days • Herbert Strang

... in dismissal and settled himself to sleep. When Culver began to stammer thanks for the ...
— The Cost • David Graham Phillips

... both with the play on words and my uncle's compliment, and turned quickly to the next group before I had time to stammer out how flattered I felt at ...
— The Rose of Old St. Louis • Mary Dillon



Words linked to "Stammer" :   utter, speech defect, mouth, speak, talk, verbalize, defect of speech, speech disorder



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