Phrases with "bits"

Thomas Hardy The real reason is, that I mostly write bits of it on scraps of paper when I am on horseback; and I put them there for convenience. A Pair of Blue Eyes by Thomas Hardy [1899]

I remembered the fire and the smouldering bits of paper which crumbled at my touch. The House of the Whispering Pines by Anna Katharine Green

Ford Madox Ford N more!- He had to take bits of old wood out of one sort of old truck and fit it into missing bits of other old truck. Last Post by Ford Madox Ford [1928]

Charles Dickens Blinking old men who are let out of workhouses by the hour, have a tendency to sit on bits of coping stone in these churchyards, leaning with both hands on their sticks and asthmatically gasping. The Uncommercial Traveller by Charles Dickens [1860]

D. H. Lawrence This was one of the old-fashioned bits of Sydney. A little further off the streets of proper brick houses clustered. Kangaroo by D. H. Lawrence

E. F. Benson You can play bits of the Moonlight by yourself. Trouble for Lucia by E. F. Benson [1939]

John Galsworthy I must sort out the bits I want to read to him. Maid in Waiting by John Galsworthy

H. G. Wells But now, Gemini, here are two remarkable bits out of my mature wisdom. Babes In The Darkling Woods by H. G. Wells [1940]

Virginia Woolf Pocket handkerchiefs, screwed up bits of paper, silver and coppers fell out as she shook it. The Years by Virginia Woolf [1937]

Frances Hodgson Burnett And she’s eaten the bits of nice meals I’ve put before her. Robin by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

James Joyce Silly-Milly burying the little dead bird in the kitchen matchbox, a daisychain and bits of broken chainies on the grave. Ulysses by James Joyce [1922]

Sinclair Lewis She realized how much she had depended on Martin for such bits of knowledge, as for all philosophy. Arrowsmith by Sinclair Lewis [1925]

Jules Verne Several of them contained debris from the hand of man, bits of broken wood, heaps of dried grasses. The Master of the World by Jules Verne [1904]

Wilkie Collins Two bits of chain hang down from the middle, which, I suppose, once held a chandelier. The Dead Secret by Wilkie Collins [1857]

Elizabeth Von Arnim All day long she was invisible, and would come back in the late afternoon looking a perfect sight, her hair full of bits of moss, and her freckles worse than ever. The Enchanted April by Elizabeth Von Arnim [1922]

Virginia Woolf They collected little bits of coloured glass. Orlando by Virginia Woolf [1928]

D. H. Lawrence The bounder rattled away, spouting his bits of English and his four words of German. He was in high feather, wriggling his large haunches on his chair and waving his hands. Sea and Sardinia by D. H. Lawrence [1921]

You understand I am piecing here bits of disconnected statements. Chance by Joseph Conrad [1913]

D. H. Lawrence Bits of pale gold are flying among delicate but cold flakes of cloud from the east, over Monte Pellegrino, bits of very new turquoise sky come out. Sea and Sardinia by D. H. Lawrence [1921]

He had tossed his mane and his forelock into a state of amazing wildness, he dilated his nostrils, bits of foam flecked his broad little chest, his eyes blazed. A Personal Record by Joseph Conrad [1912]

H. G. Wells Sometimes he would try bits on me. Babes In The Darkling Woods by H. G. Wells [1940]

Andrew Lang He scratched on bits of bone spirited representations of all the animals whose remains are found mixed with his own. Custom and Myth by Andrew Lang

D. H. Lawrence He groped in the hearth for the bits of twigs with which the fire had been started. Sea and Sardinia by D. H. Lawrence [1921]

George Gissing Threepenny bits came in now but slowly, and Mutimer exerted himself earnestly to relieve the growing want in what he called his ‘parishes. Demos by George Gissing [1886]

Anthony Trollope Bits have been lost, and other bits interpolated, and in this way have come to us the speeches which we possess. The Life of Cicero by Anthony Trollope [1881]

So I only saw bits of the fight. The Three Hostages by John Buchan [1924]

Another, composed of skeleton leaves and fibres and bast, is placed between two growing leaves pegged together with bits of stick. Last Leaves from Dunk Island by E. J. Banfield

Edith Wharton You thought the sparks were red birds in a cage, and you used to try to coax them through the fender with bits of sugar. The Mother’s Recompense by Edith Wharton [1925]

The crab then selects choice bits of weed from its old shell and fastens them to itself by the setae, which soon curl at the tips like the tendrils of a vine, and so hold them firmly. Tropic Days by E. J. Banfield

The further he went with it the less he liked it, and such bits of better stuff as he introduced in lieu of the blood and mystery rather lessened than increased the saleableness of his books. Balzac by Frederick Lawton

D. H. Lawrence There would be no light if there was no refraction, no bits of dust and stuff to turn the dark fire into visibility. The Ladybird by D. H. Lawrence

Frances Hodgson Burnett This in spite of her mental dartings to and from and dragging in of points and bits of scenes which were not connected with each other. The Head of the House of Coombe by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

D. H. Lawrence It demolished the objects of her humour so absolutely, smashed them to bits with a ruthless hammer, pounded them to nothing so terribly, that it frightened people, particularly men. Mother and Daughter by D. H. Lawrence [1929]

George Gissing Who believes for a moment that England will remain satisfied with bits here and there? We have to swallow the whole, of course. The Whirlpool by George Gissing [1896]

Richard Burton The old curtain is usually distributed amongst the officers of the Mosque, and sold in bits to pilgrims; in some distant Moslem countries, the possessor of such a relic would be considered a saint. Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-Madinah and Meccah by Richard Burton

M. P. Shiel There have been two grand storms within three weeks, and from everywhere come lamentations of boats and houses and bits of coast-wall being washed away. The Lost Viol by M. P. Shiel [1905]

William Makepeace Thackeray On them you remark the attributes of War, Commerce, Science, and Art. The bits and stirrups are silver-gilt chased. The Second Funeral of Napoleon by William Makepeace Thackeray [1841]

Arthur Morrison The bits of iron railing made imposing weapons, but were a trifle too big and heavy for rapid use in their puny hands. A Child of the Jago by Arthur Morrison

Arnold Bennett The silence was now broken only by the tinkling of the horses’ bits in the corners of the square. The Old Wives’ Tale by Arnold Bennett [1908]

Gaston Leroux There rang in the pure, thin air only the noise of the champing bits and the tintinnabulation of the bells attached to the hairy Finnish ponies’ collars. The Secret of the Night by Gaston Leroux [1913]

Life may be a hard fight, but one always pulls through when one is orderly and economical — witness the Lorilleuxs, who paid their rent to the day, the money folded up in bits of dirty paper. L’Assommoir by Émile Zola

We picked out the tastiest bits and arranged them round Flood’s breakfast table for him. Some Experiences of an Irish R.M. by Somerville and Ross [1899]

Virginia Woolf We shall not enjoy certain pleasures again, when we are free to go to bed, or to sit up, when I need no longer smuggle in bits of candle-ends and immoral literature. The Waves by Virginia Woolf [1931]

Frances Hodgson Burnett The hands which fitted together on the table in the Tower room delicate puzzles in bits of lawn and paper, did not in these days tremble with weakness. Robin by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

H. G. Wells See? Well, they have got bones of it, and from some of the marshes even feathers and dried bits of skin. The Stolen Bacillus and other incidents by H. G. Wells [1895]

Gethryn, half stretched on the big rug, idly twisting bits of it into curls, felt very comfortable, without troubling to ask himself what would come next. In the Quarter by Robert W. Chambers

H. G. Wells Or just blow everything to bits by making it strike. Meanwhile by H. G. Wells [1927]

Without looking at it again he tore it into small bits and flung them into the wastepaper basket. Keep the Aspidistra Flying by George Orwell

Anthony Trollope He was solicitous about her welfare, gave her bits of advice, did one or two commissions for her in town, called her Margaret, and was kind and cousinly. Miss Mackenzie by Anthony Trollope [1865]

D. H. Lawrence I’ll read you the choice bits — hic! Oh dear! Do you think if I drink water it would take off this hiccup? HIC! Oh, I feel perfectly helpless. Women in Love by D. H. Lawrence

You come clean about your movements on that Wednesday night, and half the irrelevant bits and pieces that are weighing the case down can be shorn off and thrown away. A Shilling for Candles by Josephine Tey [1936]

Anthony Trollope Except in America I do not remember to have seen these vicious bits of white timber — timber painted white — plastered on to the fronts and sides of red brick houses. North America by Anthony Trollope

William Morris The difficulty in it necessary to be overcome was the making of a pure and true flexible line, not over thick, with little bits of glass or marble nearly rectangular. Hopes and Fears for Art by William Morris [1882]

Arthur Conan Doyle There are some bits that will come home to you, Mr. Holmes, or I am mistaken. The Valley of Fear by Arthur Conan Doyle [1914]

Kate Chopin He talked to her while he undressed, telling her anecdotes and bits of news and gossip that he had gathered during the day. The Awakening by Kate Chopin

When she had brushed away the stray threads and bits of lace, she laid it again over her knees caressingly. The King in Yellow by Robert W. Chambers

Rudyard Kipling Fell to bits he did too, like his mate squatting down an’ watchin’ him, both of ’em all wet in the rain. Traffics and Discoveries by Rudyard Kipling [1904]

D. H. Lawrence And she found the immemorial gloom full of bits of falling plaster, and dust of floating plaster, smelling of old lime, having scaffolding and rubbish heaped about, dust cloths over the altar. The Rainbow by D. H. Lawrence

Frances Hodgson Burnett There were hundreds of bits of girls left lonely waiting for their bairns to come into the world—Some with scarce a penny unless friends took care of them. Robin by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

Mark Twain You only attach bits of paper to it with pins or thumb-tacks. What is Man? and other essays by Mark Twain

M. R. James After they went Williams was obliged to write a letter or two and clear up some odd bits of work. Ghost Stories of an Antiquary by M. R. James

Charles Dickens As it was, she merely stipulated, “If you bring the boy back with his head blown to bits by a musket, don’t look to me to put it together again. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens [1860]

Steele Rudd They cursed eloquently, and threw the bridle at him, and used up all the missiles and bits of hard mud and sticks about the yard, pelting him because he wouldn’t stand. On Our Selection by Steele Rudd

George Elio However, Dorkis got her to bed, an’ there she’s lay iver sin’, stoopid like, an’ niver speaks, an’ on’y teks little bits an’ sups when Dorkis coaxes her. Mr. Gilfil’s Love Story by George Elio

Arthur Machen They make up parties at the stations to go home together if it’s anything like dark, or if there are any lonely bits on their way. The Terror by Arthur Machen

D. H. Lawrence Don’t envy her bits of pleasures. Kangaroo by D. H. Lawrence

E. F. Benson Tourists who had no pictorial gifts would pick their way among the sketchers, and search the shops for cracked china and bits of brass. Miss Mapp by E. F. Benson [1922]

Wilkie Collins Has everybody got a port-crayon and two bits of chalk? Yes, everybody has. Hide and Seek by Wilkie Collins [1854]

H. G. Wells This one my father had made out of old clothes, trousers and such-like things, bits of flannel and bits of coarse sacking, cut into strips and sewn together. The Dream by H. G. Wells [1924]

It consisted mostly of bits out of Fenimore Cooper, Dr Watts, and Lord Tennyson, and at the end there were the queerest little ‘Nature Notes’ with woodcut illustrations. A Clergyman’s Daughter by George Orwell

Virginia Woolf Little bits of ourselves are crumbling. The Waves by Virginia Woolf [1931]

Henry Lawson And in the evening they would come home with the black bag full of stones and bits of rock, and Steelman would lecture on those minerals after tea. While the Billy Boils by Henry Lawson

All this cutting people up and leaving bits of them about the countryside. Coming up for Air by George Orwell

Andrew Lang All kinds of things swam over her — shavings, bits of straw, and scraps of old newspapers. The Yellow Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

George Gissing Under glass were ranged minutiae such as bullets, fragments of shells, bits of gore-drenched cloth or linen, a splinter of human bone—all ticketed with neat inscription. The Crown of Life by George Gissing [1899]

The small car, being made of bits and pieces, soon went the way of all nursery objects; but the little horse, chunky and solid, had survived and had become Patrick’s halidom and fetish. Brat Farrar by Josephine Tey

He plucks flowers and weeds, and weaves chaplets of them, or sails yellow leaves and bits of bark on the stream, rejoicing in their safety, or weeping at their wreck. The Last Man by Mary Shelley

Walter Scott The bits o’ bairns, puir things, are wearying to see their luckie dad; and Reuben never sleeps weel, nor I neither, when you and he hae had ony bit outcast. The Heart of Mid-Lothian by Walter Scott [1818]

The “monoxyle” was full of green-brown rain water, the oar-pins were represented by bits of stick, and all the furniture was wanting. Two Trips to Gorilla Land and the Cataracts of the Congo by Richard F. Burton [1876]

Jules Verne On the 14th of March I saw floating ice in latitude 55°, merely pale bits of debris from twenty to twenty-five feet long, forming banks over which the sea curled. Twenty-Thousand Leagues Under the Sea by Jules Verne [1872]

H. G. Wells You saw human beings and bits of human beings quivering, dying, dead, torn to pieces. Babes In The Darkling Woods by H. G. Wells [1940]

The others gave me bits of their dinner, and Sid Lovegrove had a penny, so someone fetched a Penny Monster which we had between us. Coming up for Air by George Orwell

Anthony Trollope We are going to lend money to the parishes on the security of the rates for draining bits of common land. The Prime Minister by Anthony Trollope

Gervase and I struggle along with our patch but only his bits look like the illustration; mine always turn out to be something else. Miss Pym Disposes by Josephine Tey

Bits of wood, nails, hair, egg-shells, bits of glass, shreds of linen and woollen cloth, pebbles, and even hot cinders and knives, were the articles generally chosen. Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay [1852]

Among other things there were fancy, braided quirts, spurs with great spiked wheels, and double bits that looked as though they could break a horse’s jaw without trouble. The Day of the Locust by Nathanael Wes

H.P. Lovecraft Some of them were bits of ancient folklore; others were case histories in the annals of medicine; one or two were anecdotes obscurely buried in standard histories. The Shadow Out of Time by H.P. Lovecraft [1935]

Think, Mr. Philip, how you and him used to be friends and playfellows — brothers almost — when you was both bits of boys. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

E. Phillips Oppenheim Herring soup with cabbage and bits of rough meat in it most of the time. The Ostrekoff Jewels by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1932]

Arthur Machen Lucian showed his Confessions to his father, and began to talk of the beautiful bits he had already found. The Hill of Dreams by Arthur Machen [1907]

When I got out, the horse was laughing, but he had to eat slowly, because the bits were in his mouth. A Study of Hawthorne by G. P. Lathrop [1876]

Now, if only one of them little bits smarts, the whole creature goes wrong — there’s the mischief. Under Two Flags by Ouida [1867]

Arthur Machen I don’t see those bits of lace she had from Granny, and the set of jet is gone, and so is the garnet necklace, and the coral brooch. The Islington Mystery by Arthur Machen

Sir Walter Scott He’s a camsteary chield, and fasheous about marches, and we’ve had some bits o’ splores thegither; but deil o’meif I wad wrang Jock o’ Dawston neither. Guy Mannering by Sir Walter Scott [1815]

It was rough ploughing, for the place was thick with bits of stone from the tower, but the slow Afrikander oxen plodded on, and sometime in the afternoon the work was finished. The Grove of Ashtaroth by John Buchan [1910]

G. K. Chesterton I put it together somehow out of bits of that talk we had about ambidexterity and bits of Doone’s rotten old rubbish about anthropoids. Four Faultless Felons by G. K. Chesterton [1930]

Thomas Hardy From the interior of her purse a host of bits of paper, like a flock of white birds, floated into the air, and were blown about in all directions. A Pair of Blue Eyes by Thomas Hardy [1899]

This was Friday. Jim hadn’t sold his bits of traps, because he didn’t want it to be known he wasn’t coming back. Robbery Under Arms by Rolf Boldrewood

Andrew Lang But Big Lion kept all the choice bits for himself, and only gave away the little scraps that he did not care about eating; and the little hare grew very angry, and determined to have his revenge. The Pink Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Frances Hodgson Burnett Between the blossoming branches of the canopy bits of blue sky looked down like wonderful eyes. The Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1911]

Richard Burton Before sleeping each man collected for himself seven “Jamrah”— bits of granite the size of a small bean. Personal Narrative of a Pilgrimage to Al-Madinah and Meccah by Richard Burton

Kate Chopin He crawled about on hands and knees, picking up the stray bits of chips and moss that had fallen from his arms when he came in. At Fault by Kate Chopin

He flung down the small bits of paper. Tales of Unrest by Joseph Conrad [1898]

Willa Cather She was always ready to lend her dresses and hats and bits of jewellery for the school theatricals, and she never worked people for favours. Obscure Destinies by Willa Cather [1932]

Andrew Lang He carries them home, and the village wisdom determines that the wedge-shaped piece of metal is a ‘thunder-bolt,’ or that the bits of flint are ‘elf-shots,’ the heads of fairy arrows. Custom and Myth by Andrew Lang

Tod sat on where he was, dropping the bits of paper. Sanker’s Visit by Ellen Wood [1868]

Mark Twain Some of ’em’s worth twenty dollars apiece — there ain’t any, hardly, but’s worth six bits or a dollar. The Adventures of Tom Sawyer by Mark Twain [1876]

All about them was gloom; twilit shops; snatches of honeyed talk; fusty smells; bits of traffic; seamen singing. Limehouse Nights by Thomas Burke

George Eliot I always have a favourite book by me at breakfast, and I enjoy the bits I pick up then so much, that regularly every morning it seems to me as if I should certainly become studious again. Adam Bede by George Eliot [1859]

No; I propose that you should show Mallow some of the prettiest bits in the Forest. I am not half so accomplished a guide as you; but we’ll all go. Vixen by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1879]

Virginia Woolf Little bits of black cork had floated past; the fish were dead in the bottom of the boat. To the Lighthouse by Virginia Woolf [1927]

Taking it out I tore it up very carefully, into tiny bits of pieces. Serapion by Francis Stevens

E. F. Benson There we were together on the Gallagher Banks, she all to bits all the time, and I should have scorned myself for attempting to worm it out of her. Mapp and Lucia by E. F. Benson [1931]

George Gissing We may reasonably hope, old man, to see our boys blown into small bits by the explosive that hasn’t got its name yet. The Whirlpool by George Gissing [1896]

Virginia Woolf She’s moved her knees — the map’s in bits again. Monday or Tuesday by Virginia Woolf [1921]

I don’t want to cast any reflections upon the artistic talent of your constituent, Senator, but I, myself, wouldn’t give six bits for the picture—without the frame. Roads of Destiny by O. Henry [1909]

Charles Dickens The loose little bits of carpet writhe under my tread, and take wormy shapes. Reprinted Pieces by Charles Dickens [1850]

Either some lighted bits will fall on it or one of those bastards will use it to stand on. The Franchise Affair by Josephine Tey

Elizabeth Von Arnim Then there is the boy who drives the donkey and water-cart round the garden, and who has an altogether reprehensible habit of whisking round corners and slicing off bits of the lawn as he whisks. The Solitary Summer by Elizabeth Von Arnim [1899]

Virginia Woolf It looked like an office, with its files of papers and its deed-boxes, except that horses’ bits hung by the fireplace, and there was the silver cup he had won at polo. The Years by Virginia Woolf [1937]

Bubbles had so many queer, out-of-the-way bits of knowledge. From Out the Vasty Deep by Marie Belloc Lowndes [1920]

Twigs, bits of paper and wood, cords, old boxes drifted on it. All Hallows’ Eve by Charles Williams [1945]

Those bits of noos were pumped into Gresson that he might pass them on. Mr. Standfast by John Buchan [1919]

Frances Hodgson Burnett She is—a very beautiful young thing, Dowie.” “From her little head to her slim bits of feet, your grace. The Head of the House of Coombe by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

Arnold Bennett Then he stooped to put some bits of coal silently on the fire. These Twain by Arnold Bennett [1916]

James Joyce They shake out the threepenny bits and sixpences and coax out the pennies with the blade of a knife. Ulysses by James Joyce [1922]

H. G. Wells But in regard to things, bits of glass, scraps of metal, springs and balances, they have not been encumbered to the same extent. Star-Begotten by H. G. Wells [1937]

Rudyard Kipling Then, a long while after p’raps, you run through a regular rain of bits of burnt paper coming down on the decks — like showers of volcanic ash, you know. Destroyers at Jutland by Rudyard Kipling [1916]

E. F. Benson It’s bits of the tiger that used to be the hearthrug here. Lucia's Progress by E. F. Benson [1935]

Andrew Lang He cut up the rest of the body into little bits and strewed them to the four winds. The Yellow Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

The rest of England had kept up a desultory plopetty-plop-plop at their blockhouse, bringing down bits of plaster and woodwork and other defenceless things. Limehouse Nights by Thomas Burke

Jacques Futrelle It was a sealed envelope addressed to Mr. Charles Winthrop Rankin. Mr. Grimm glanced at the superscription, tore the envelope into bits and dropped it into a basket. Elusive Isabel by Jacques Futrelle [1909]

They thought we didn’t tumble, I expect; but I seen their horses hung up outside, both shod all round; bits and irons bright. Robbery Under Arms by Rolf Boldrewood

George Gissing How I did laugh! Last Christmas Day they smashed up their ‘ome an’ threw the bits out into the street. The Nether World by George Gissing [1888]

In bits and spots it showed a certain amount of feverish brilliancy, yes, even mature solidity; in fact, it was nowhere bad, but still it was not Gethryn and he knew that. In the Quarter by Robert W. Chambers

Algernon Blackwood Like the flow of a stream, indeed, things went past him, yet with incidents and bits of conversation thus picked out with vivid sharpness. The Bright Messenger by Algernon Blackwood [1922]

H. G. Wells You left some bits of bacon; I can’t think ‘ow. Babes In The Darkling Woods by H. G. Wells [1940]

The Miss Maplesones sang the most fascinating duets, and accompanied themselves on guitars, ornamented with bits of ethereal blue ribbon. Sketches by Boz by Charles Dickens [1836]

Auld Dobbie in Murchison’s Close — he’s our doer [man of business], ye maun ken, as his father was afore him — he has had mony a sair tuilzie for our bits o’ rents. Witch Wood by John Buchan [1927]

George Meredith All were as remote little bits of mechanism. Beauchamp's Career by George Meredith [1875]

It was extremely battered and the frost-bitten face, full of sores, under it was framed in bits of mangy fur. The Warrior’s Soul by Joseph Conrad [1916]

D. H. Lawrence He lay still, with tiny bits of snow tickling his face. Sons and Lovers by D. H. Lawrence

Sinclair Lewis On a golden-oak center-table was a large lamp with a mosaic shade, and through its mingled bits of green and red and pearl glass stormed the brilliance of a mantle-light. Our Mr. Wrenn by Sinclair Lewis

Herman Melville They each had bits of unstranded old junk in their hands, and, with a sort of stoical self-content, were picking the junk into oakum, a small heap of which lay by their sides. Benito Cereno by Herman Melville

It was quite uncanny sometimes how he would regale us overnight with bits of news that would next morning appear in the newspapers. The Secret of the Sandhills by Arthur Gask [1921]

D. H. Lawrence Clifford was really clever at that slightly humorous analysis of people and motives which leaves everything in bits at the end. Lady Chatterley’s Lover by D. H. Lawrence

Willa Cather From her early years she must have treasured up those pithy bits of local speech, of native idiom, which enrich and enliven her pages. Not Under Forty by Willa Cather [1936]

They came presently to the pages Clarissa had covered at Hale Castle — bits of familiar landscape, glimpses of still life in the Castle rooms, and lightly-touched portraits of the Castle guests. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

Henry Handel Richardson Really, he seemed to look upon them as bits of himself, and hence not to be parted with. The Way Home by Henry Handel Richardson

Gertrude Stein A moon, a moon, a darkness and the stars and little bits of eels and a special sauce, not a very special sauce, not only that. Geography and Plays by Gertrude Stein

Anthony Trollope She had earned nothing, and she would take nothing; and it was in vain that the old lady spread the clean bits of paper before her. The Eustace Diamonds by Anthony Trollope

I don’t say that there’s not plenty of riff-raff — the pint-and-a-dram gentry and the soft-heads that are aye reading bits of newspapers, and muddlin’ their wits with foreign whigmaleeries. Mr. Standfast by John Buchan [1919]

Nellie Bly An old woman, with an enormous bonnet and a dirty basket filled with chunks of bread and bits of scrap meat, completed our company. Ten Days in a Mad-House by Nellie Bly

Edith Wharton In the earlier days, moreover, such fragments of experience as one got were torn from their setting like bits of flesh scattered by shrapnel. Coming Home by Edith Wharton [1916]

D. H. Lawrence I feel sometimes as if I should burst and shatter to bits like a sky-rocket when I think of it. The White Peacock by D. H. Lawrence

William Makepeace Thackeray Some bits of broken bread; two Dutch cheeses (whole); the crust of an old Stilton; and about an ounce of almonds and raisins. The Tremendous Adventures of Major Gahagan by William Makepeace Thackeray [1838]

Watkin Tench He wore a string of bits of dried reed round his neck, which I asked him to exchange for a black stock. A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson by Watkin Tench

He would break my mind to pieces now if he could, and would offer up the little bits to God. He thinks the voice of God in the heart is a temptation of the devil. Diana Tempest by Mary Cholmondeley [1893]

The baby-boy had varied the monotony of his solitary sports by picking little bits out of it. The Golden Calf by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

Guy de Maupassan He was said to be half silly, at any rate an original, almost in his dotage, living by any lucky bits that he could make as horse-coper and veterinary. The Marquis by Guy de Maupassan

I’m going to catch a wheen salmon, and potter about my bits of fields, and read my books, and sit by my fireside. The House of the Four Winds by John Buchan

I was near ‘em as I am to you; and I could make out he was all to bits — ‘eard his breath rattle in his blooming lungs as he come down the ladder. The Wrecker by Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

See where the bits of the broken glass have made those little flecks of blood upon his lips?” He shook his head. Marauders by Night by Arthur Gask [1951]

D. H. Lawrence And NO stranger should ever be made a party to these terrible bits of connubial staging. The Captain’s Doll by D. H. Lawrence

As for the walls, they were covered with the queerest-looking objects; bits of old iron, odd-looking things made of wood and leather, and so on. The Lodger by Marie Belloc Lowndes [1913]

D. H. Lawrence Alvina set about to make a mock woodcock, or a mock something or other, with cheese and an egg and bits of toast. The Lost Girl by D. H. Lawrence

And then, you know, we could have the whole of the balcony scene, and other bits that we choose to work in — perhaps parts of other acts that would suit the scene. Annie Kilburn by William Dean Howells

Anthony Trollope What’s written on these eight bits of paper everybody may know,” and he pulled out of a large case or purse, which he carried in his breast coat-pocket, a fat sheaf of bills. Mr. Scarborough's Family by Anthony Trollope [1883]

Virginia Woolf He looked at her, biting little bits off her banana. The Years by Virginia Woolf [1937]

This, with soft soap and the hard Paris water, meant scraping the grease off with bits of newspaper. Down and Out in Paris and London by George Orwell

Six or seven months after this accident happened, bits of the beetle — a leg, a wing, or parts of its body — came away in the wax. Journal of a Cruise on the Tanganyika Lake by John Hanning Speke [1864]

I’m always picking it out of bits of toffee. A Shilling for Candles by Josephine Tey [1936]

We took the bits out of their mouths, and let them pick feed round about, with the bridle under their feet, stockhorse fashion. Robbery Under Arms by Rolf Boldrewood

The ordinary spy knows only bits of unconnected facts. Mr. Standfast by John Buchan [1919]

Robert Louis Stevenson However, I was conquered, took the young gentleman to my high favour, and tore up my bits of scandal on the spot. Prince Otto by Robert Louis Stevenson

Wilkie Collins You politely hoped, before you went away? that the tea would do me good — and, oh God, you could not even look at me when you said that! You looked at the broken bits of the tea-cup. The Law and the Lady by Wilkie Collins [1875]

Snatches of song and bits of whistling rose continuously from easel and taboret, all blending in a drowsy hum. In the Quarter by Robert W. Chambers

Robert Louis Stevenson These are the bits of our life which I enjoy, which have some poetry, some grandeur in them. Memoir of Fleeming Jenkin by Robert Louis Stevenson

She told him an artful story, some of it put together in bits from some of the romances she had read. The Man of Death by Arthur Gask [1945]

Anthony Trollope Twenty bits of paper are placed in a hat, on six of which are written the names of the running horses — the others are blanks — and they are then drawn, as lots, out of the hat. The Macdermots of Ballycloran by Anthony Trollope [1847]

Guy de Maupassant It is the old Saracen Gate, overgrown with ivy, and there are ruins in all directions on the hills round the town, fragments of Roman walls, bits of Saracen monuments, the remains of Arabic buildings. Marroca by Guy de Maupassant [1882]

Leslie Stephen He always had bits of verse on the anvil, ready to be hammered and polished at any moment. Alexander Pope by Leslie Stephen [1880]

Then the judge put on his glasses and began to go all over the evidence, very grave and steady like, and read bits out of the notes which he’d taken very careful all the time. Robbery Under Arms by Rolf Boldrewood

Isabella Bird Dirty mats or bits of carpets cover the floor, racks are provided for the shoes of the worshippers, and if there is not a gallery a space is railed off for the women. Journeys in Persia and Kurdistan by Isabella Bird [1891]

James Joyce Ferme. Hired dog! Shoot him to bloody bits with a bang shotgun, bits man spattered walls all brass buttons. Ulysses by James Joyce [1922]

Thomas Hardy And there’s four ounce pennies, the heaviest I could find, a-tied up in bits of linen, for weights — two for my right eye and two for my left,’ she said. The Mayor of Casterbridge by Thomas Hardy

Isabella Bird Dust and cobwebs of ancient date, droppings from candles and bits of candle wicks offend Western eyes in the sacristy and elsewhere. Journeys in Persia and Kurdistan by Isabella Bird [1891]

Another bomb fell to the right, and presently bits of our own shrapnel were clattering viciously around me. Mr. Standfast by John Buchan [1919]

Edith Wharton The blood rushed to her face, and she sprang up angrily, half minded to tear the letters in bits and throw them all into the fire. The Glimpses of the Moon by Edith Wharton [1922]

Man, the wee laddies in Glesca the day are worshippin’ bits o’ your jersey. Castle Gay by John Buchan [1930]

This time I flung the bits into the new-kindled fire. The Three Hostages by John Buchan [1924]

Willa Cather In those germless days she had worn bits of broom-straw, plucked from the common sweeping-broom, in the lobes until the holes were healed and ready for little gold rings. O Pioneers! by Willa Cather [1913]

Arthur Conan Doyle They could only hear snatches outside, bits of prayer, bits of exhortation, bits of kindly greeting. The Land of Mist by Arthur Conan Doyle [1926]

Have you seen the things he brought her from the Simla Art Exhibition? He said they were nice bits of colour, and she has hung them in the drawing-room, where she will have to look at them every day. The Pool in the Desert by Sara Jeannette Duncan [1903]

Henry Lawson If he can’t find a piece of string long enough, he ties two bits together, and submits the result to a rather severe test; and if the string is too thin, or he has to use thread, he doubles it. While the Billy Boils by Henry Lawson

Whole life revolving round the old school and their bits of Latin and Greek and poetry. Coming up for Air by George Orwell

The slippers were rose-coloured, worked with white flowers in floss silk; and the bits of loose green from the ferns floated over them like green weeds on a pond. Our Visit by Ellen Wood

E. F. Benson But as you must know so well, dear Olga, music makes an imperishable store of memories within one: morsels of Mozart: bits of Beethoven all audible to the inward ear. Trouble for Lucia by E. F. Benson [1939]

She cut thin slices of tongue, she fished out savouriest bits of pigeon and egg, when he passed, by a natural transition, from chicken to pie. The Golden Calf by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

Charles Dickens Her head in particular was so strewn with scraps of gauze and cotton and bits of paper, and had so many queer odds and ends stuck all about it, that it looked like a bird’s-nest. American Notes for General Circulation by Charles Dickens [1842]