Phrases with "fain"

But fain would I shun blood and battle, and fain would I not deal sorrow to womenfolk and wives because good stout yeomen lose their lives. The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood. by Written and illustrated by Howard Pyle

Now Thrand and Onund met Eyvind the Eastman, and he received his brother well; but when he knew that Onund was come with him, then he waxed wroth, and would fain set on him. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Elizabeth Gaskell He could hardly think of anything else, though he himself was occasionally weary of the same constantly recurring idea, and would fain have banished it from his mind. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell [1863]

Anthony Trollope She would to the last fain have married Pen, in whom she believes, thinking that he would make a name for her. Thackeray by Anthony Trollope [1879]

Walter Scott The good dame could not conceive how she was entitled to such an honour, and would fain have pleaded her want of every sort of convenience to entertain a guest of that quality. The Monastery by Walter Scott [1820]

Andrew Lang But into Hell would I fain go; for into Hell fare the goodly clerks, and goodly knights that fall in tourneys and great wars, and stout men at arms, and all men noble. Aucassin and Nicolete by Andrew Lang

She found herself listening to talk about things which were of the earth earthy, and was fain to confess herself interested in the conversation. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

William Makepeace Thackeray The arbiter of peace and war was fain to send superb ambassadors to kick their heels in Dutch shopkeepers’ ante-chambers. The Paris Sketch Book by William Makepeace Thackeray [1840]

Walter Besant Men such as myself, who would fain know the true temper of the people, are open to great danger of deceit. Dorothy Forster by Walter Besant [1884]

Anthony Trollope At Maurice’s mills, the only resting-place on the road, it had been his custom to give his horse a mouthful of water; but he would not do so now though the poor beast would fain have stopped there. An Eye for an Eye by Anthony Trollope [1879]

Adam Lindsay Gordon You! you would fain be my master; mark you! the difference is grave. Poems by Adam Lindsay Gordon

What befell him after, poor faithful soul, fain, fain would I hear, but may not. The Cloister and the Hearth by Charles Reade

Arthur Conan Doyle Bide with us, I pray you, for if you would fain hear the latest songs from England, these gentlemen have doubtless brought them. Sir Nigel by Arthur Conan Doyle [1906]

He was unhired and single, and would fain do some work, for he was moneyless. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Walter Scott At length he said, looking up, “Thou knowest, Dunois, that, for thy father’s sake, as well as thine own, I would full fain do thee a service. Quentin Durward by Walter Scott [1823]

Henry David Thoreau I too would fain be a track-repairer somewhere in the orbit of the earth. Walden by Henry David Thoreau

Sir Walter Scott So I have been fain to draw my sword-belt three bores tighter for very extenuation, lest hunger and heavy iron should make the gird slip. A Legend of Montrose by Sir Walter Scott [1819]

Sir Richard Burton And if they answer us not, fain we will be answered by force. The Arabian Nights' Entertainments by Sir Richard Burton

I am fain to shut myself up in concealment, for I cannot endure visits; it is an honour which displeases and wears me out. The Life of Petrarch by Thomas Campbell

Walter Scott Balagny then observed, this was hot service; but Herbert swore, he would not turn back first; so the Frenchman was finally fain to set him the example or retreat. The Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border by Walter Scott [1802-1803]

From all this there was din enough to be heard among them, and the home-folk were nowise fain to come to them. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Anthony Trollope That had been all! She had first accepted him, and then rejected him, and then accepted him again; and now she would fain be firm, if firmness were only possible to her. The Belton Estate by Anthony Trollope

Matthew Arnold Those who would fain treat them as creatures of a lower order dare not now show this disposition to their face; it would not be pleasant. George Sand by Matthew Arnold [1877]

But the slayer too, awful earth-dragon, empty of breath, lay felled in fight, nor, fain of its treasure, could the writhing monster rule it more. Beowulf by translated by Francis Gummere

She was overwhelmed with shame, and would fain have defended herself, fain have given a reason for being found in that man’s company. A Love Episode by Émile Zola [1878]

Thomas Love Peacock Captain Jamy. I wad full fain hear some question ‘tween you tway. Crotchet Castle by Thomas Love Peacock

Let’s hear, Knight Hagen, what ye twain did speak, ye doughty men, when ye saw me coming toward you armed? Ye said, that ye alone would fain encounter me in strife. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Wilkie Collins After a long delay — long to me; for my impatience would fain have turned hours into minutes — I received a reply. Basil by Wilkie Collins [1852]

But the cowardly braggadocio would fain withdraw, now that the enemy is actually in sight, and is only restrained from flight by his servant, who pushes him forward directly in Leander’s path. Captain Fracasse by Théophile Gautier [1863]

George Elio Sir Cristhifer’s fain an’ delaighted, I can see. Mr. Gilfil’s Love Story by George Elio

Edna St. Vincent Millay All my life long Over my shoulder have I looked at peace; And now I fain would lie in this long grass And close my eyes. Second April by Edna St. Vincent Millay

I modestly fu fain wad hint it, That one pound one, I sairly want it; If wi’ the hizzie down ye sent it, It would be kind; And while my heart wi’ life-blood dunted, I’d bear’t in mind. Robert Burns by John Campbell Shairp [1879]

James Joyce How? Cease thee, cantatrickee! I fain would be solo. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

How fain she was to see the heroes from the Hunnish land! With smiling mien the noble maiden spake: “Now be my father and his men full welcome here. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

They loved the things of this life, and would fain have carried their pursuits and pleasures with them into the land beyond the grave. A Thousand Miles up the Nile by Amelia B. Edwards [1877]

She knew what was coming, and having expected nothing so desperate, knew not how to arrest the confession that she would fain have avoided hearing. Charlotte’s Inheritance by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1868]

Elizabeth Gaskell The watchers would fain have spoken, but durst not, for fear of taking off Emily’s attention, and causing her to avert her head for a moment from the enraged brute. The Life of Charlotte Bronte by Elizabeth Gaskell [1857]

Anthony Trollope He hummed and ha’d and would fain have refused, but on this subject she was peremptory. Framley Parsonage by Anthony Trollope

Then they entered into fellowship with Thorir and his men; for they were exceeding fain to try their strength, and said that there would they be whereas the fight was hottest. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Andrew Lang Then his parents said to him that he should journey to another kingdom and seek for himself a bride, for they were beginning to grow old, and would fain see their son married. The Pink Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Sometimes, when the dense of her guilt was strongest, she would fain have asked her husband to take her back to Arden; which must needs be a kind of sanctuary, as it were, she thought. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

She spake: “Sir King, I fain would have your aid, lest your chamberlain leave naught of all my store of dress; he squandereth eke my gold. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Lucilla could not decide for herself, so she was fain to accept the decision of another. Her Father’s Name by Florence Marryat [1878]

So fell on them the evening-tide, O’er the meads the dew drave down, And fain was Signy, that sweet thing, With her folk to bed to be gone. Poems by the Way by William Morris [1891]

Charles Kingsley Draco — a dragon — serpent — the emblem of Diabolus himself — ah! And the guardian of the golden apples of the West, who would fain devour our new Hercules, his most Catholic majesty. Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley

Charles Dickens The tears once banished gave place to the smiles, and at last Dolly laughed so much that she was fain to lean against a tree, and give vent to her exultation. Barnaby Rudge by Charles Dickens [1841]

Grim turned off after him, and was fain to know if he had got enough. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Arthur Conan Doyle But now I pray you that you will come back with us to Winchelsea, for well I know that my father would fain thank you for what you have done this day. Sir Nigel by Arthur Conan Doyle [1906]

Anthony Trollope The widow would fain have seen more of him than he allowed her to do. Framley Parsonage by Anthony Trollope

Anthony Trollope He knew that he could not endure it, that he could not remain there at his post, diligent as he fain would be, if his reward were to be postponed for so long. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

Elizabeth Gaskell She would so fain have let herself love Mr Farquhar; but this constant manoeuvring, in which she did not feel clear that he did not take a passive part, made her sick at heart. Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell [1853]

Walter Scott Life, death, time, and eternity were swimming before his eyes — a stunning and overwhelming prospect, from which human nature recoiled in its weakness, though human pride would fain have borne up. Quentin Durward by Walter Scott [1823]

George Gissing Her breakfast next morning was served by Mabel Turpin, the elder daughter, a stupidly good-natured girl, who would fain have entered into conversation. Miss Rodney's Leisure by George Gissing

Charles Dickens Philip made one effort to give them relief; but they were so hemmed in by the English power, that he could not succeed, and was fain to leave the place. A Child’s History of England by Charles Dickens [1852]

Me therein, an innocent man, the fiendish foe was fain to thrust with many another. Beowulf by translated by Francis Gummere

I had quietly to unloose them; their hold dissolved to my touch; her hand shrunk away; my own would fain have followed it, but for the present I forbade such impulse. The Professor by Charlotte Bronte [1857]

To appease the gnawings of hunger, they were fain to eat the leather of their saddles and belts. The History of the Conquest of Peru by William Hickling Presco

But fain and full is the heart in me To know that folk are like to thee. Poems by the Way by William Morris [1891]

Anthony Trollope There are different kinds of love, Ferdinand. There is that which a woman gives to a man when she would fain mate with him. The Prime Minister by Anthony Trollope

Charles Dudley Warner They were huge feeders also, and deep carousers, and could not accommodate themselves to the sober diet of our troops, but must fain eat and drink after the manner of their own country. Washington Irving by Charles Dudley Warner

Fanny Fern The laurel crown indeed is won, but the feet at which she fain would cast it have finished their toilsome earth-march. Ruth Hall by Fanny Fern [1854]

Elizabeth Gaskell Ellinor got well, as I have said, even when she would fain have died. A Dark Night’s Work by Elizabeth Gaskell [1864]

Wilkie Collins So the fatal force of circumstance turned the hand that would fain have held Magdalen back into the hand that drove her on. No Name by Wilkie Collins [1862]

Elizabeth Gaskell She took her hand out of Margaret’s with a little impatient movement, as if she would fain be left alone with the recollection of her son. North and South by Elizabeth Gaskell [1854]

George Gissing As a woman in love, she would fain have obscured the moral issue by indulgence of her heart’s desire. Born in Exile by George Gissing [1891]

John Locke In this case the mind is fain to find out some other angles, to which the three angles of a triangle have an equality; and, finding those equal to two right ones. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding by John Locke [1690]

George Meredith We fain would stand contemplative, All innocent as meadow grass; In human goodness fain believe, Believe a cloud is formed to pass; Its shadows chase with draughts of hippocras. Last Poems by George Meredith [1909]

Of Grettir and Thorir Redbeard. Now Thorir of Garth heard where Grettir had set himself down, and was fain to set afoot some plot whereby he might be slain. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Mental as well as bodily exertion is, at first, irksome; so much so, that the many would fain let others both work and think for them. A Vindication of the Rights of Woman by Mary Wollstonecraft [1792]

Her nine-and-twentieth birthday had passed; and contemplating herself earnestly in her glass, she was fain to confess that something of the brilliancy of her beauty had faded. Run to Earth by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1868]

Sir Walter Scott The Baron has been with King Robert his liege These three long years in battle and siege; News are there none of his weal or his woe, And fain the Lady his fate would know. Waverley by Sir Walter Scott [1829]

Anthony Trollope He believed, and would fain have let that suffice. John Caldigate by Anthony Trollope

Robert Louis Stevenson And take my life all through, look at it fore and back, and upside down, — though I would very fain change myself — I would not change my circumstances, unless it were to bring you here. Vailima Letters by Robert Louis Stevenson

Anthony Trollope She made no effort to avoid him, and would fain have been allowed to treat him simply as her dearest friend. Cousin Henry by Anthony Trollope [1879]

Jules Verne Here they found the professor, who, startled by the sudden cold, had been fain to make a precipitate retreat from his observatory. Off on a Comet by Jules Verne [1877]

For three months, on meeting and parting they had simply shaken hands in friendly greeting; they would fain that their love had died. A Love Episode by Émile Zola [1878]

Right fain of the good banquet were Corinius and his folk, and silence was in the hall for awhile save for the clatter of dishes and the champing of the mouths of the feasters. The Worm Ouroboros by E. R. Eddison [1922]

Charles Kingsley Amyas grinds his teeth, and would fain hustle into the thick of the press once more, in spite of the galleys’ beaks. Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley

Elizabeth Gaskell Besides, hear you not that I end where all would fain end? Think of him, and of his needs. Lois the Witch by Elizabeth Gaskell [1859]

Flee he never so fast, he shall not escape us,” The brach was loosed, the bear sprang hence; Kriemhild’s husband would fain overtake him. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Thou shalt be fain to get Oddrun, but that shall Atli forbid thee; but privily shall ye meet, and much shall she love thee. The Story of the Volsungs by translated by William Morris and Eirikr Magnusson

She was very grateful for this unexpected kindness; and her father was fain to submit to be kissed and praised for his goodness more than was entirely agreeable to him. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

Elizabeth Gaskell Come, Sylvia.’ And Philip, fain to keep with Sylvia, had to follow the two girls close up to the specksioneer, who was preparing for his slow laborious walk back to his lodgings. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell [1863]

Anthony Trollope Was he very ill? was he dangerously ill? She hoped, she would fain hope, that his illness had not arisen from any mental grief. The Three Clerks by Anthony Trollope

She watched him furtively as he sat in a big high-backed arm-chair staring moodily at the struggling fire, and would fain have questioned him a little about Barlingford and Barlingford people. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

The girl who had kept watch in her room, by the doctor’s suggestion, was the one friend and confidante whom the young mistress of Marchmont Towers fain would have chosen. John Marchmont’s Legacy by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1862]

Elizabeth Gaskell For your service — you — who would fain cast me off in my old age. Crowley Castle by Elizabeth Gaskell [1864]

Anthony Trollope Will you take it?’ She looked wistfully up in his eyes; and would fain have taken it. Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope

Walter Scott He felt this was the case, yet would fain have combated the symptoms of indisposition, which, indeed, he imputed chiefly to sea-sickness. Redgauntlet by Walter Scott [1824]

Then the dying warrior looked upward from the blood in which he lay; well he saw, that his uncle would fain help him hence. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Anthony Trollope Nay, the doing so does but stamp them the more plainly with that horrid name from which they would so fain escape. The Three Clerks by Anthony Trollope

Daniel Defoe Then I was impatient to hear some news of the loss; and would fain know how it was, whether they were a poor body’s goods, or a rich. The Fortunes and Misfortunes of the Famous Moll Flanders by Daniel Defoe [1683]

She had a sense of humiliation in her helplessness, and, like some wounded animal that crawls to its covert to die, she would fain have hidden her misery from the eye of strangers. Phantom Fortune by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

George Gissing If you would fain do so before we set forth, I will be no hinderer. Veranilda by George Gissing [1903]

Anthony Trollope Mr Sowerby did feel something like sincere regard, or rather love, for that poor parson whom he inveigled into mischief, and would fain save him, if it were possible, from the Tozer fang. Framley Parsonage by Anthony Trollope

Elizabeth Gaskell Her sorrow was so dignified, and her mute endurance and her patient love won her such respect, that the neighbours would fain have been friends; but she kept alone and solitary. The Well of Pen-Morfa by Elizabeth Gaskell [1850]

Thomas Hardy And yet I fain would see today. The Trumpet-Major by Thomas Hardy [1879]

Therefore, indeed — by your good will — it behooves me to wend; I have now at my disposal barely three days; and I were as fain fall dead as fail of mine errand. Sir Gawain and the Green Knight by translated by Kenneth G. T. Webster and W. A. Neilson

The King’s Daughter. As once our fingers met, O love, So shall our lips be fain thereof. Poems by the Way by William Morris [1891]

George Gissing Basil had jumped down from his horse, and would fain have entered, but, by an arrangement already made, this was forbidden. Veranilda by George Gissing [1903]

She fain would have flung herself upon her knees, in loving self-abasement, at the sick man’s feet. John Marchmont’s Legacy by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1862]

So Thorstein Dromund came out to Micklegarth a little after Angle, and was fain above all things to slay him, but neither knew the other. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

John Locke For, as to the greatest part of them, even those masters of definitions were fain to leave them untouched, merely by the impossibility they found in it. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding by John Locke [1690]

Forsooth King Etzel’s wife would fain lead us into wrong. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

And after having in vain tried to bring Roberts over to their way of thinking, McClashin and his companions were fain to submit to the majority, though they did so with a very bad grace. Ralph Rashleigh by James Tucker

Wilkie Collins Clara! My parting words to her, when I had unclasped from my neck those kind arms which would fain have held me to home for ever, had expressed a promise that was yet unfulfilled. Basil by Wilkie Collins [1852]

I am fain to hear it again, for ’tis a tongue I love. The Company of the Marjolaine by John Buchan

In the meantime she was fain to be patient, and to refrain from any irritating persistence upon a subject that was very near to her heart. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

George Gissing Fain, fain would O’Gree have proposed to journey back to London by the same train, but good taste and good sense prevailed with him. The Unclassed by George Gissing [1883]

Anything but that! I am like Gonzalo, and “would fain die a dry death. Life in Mexico by Frances Calderon de la Barca [1843]

She would fain have called in a strange doctor — she would fain have sought for comfort and consolation from some new quarter. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

By her question one might note full well that she was fain to hear if Kriemhild still were well. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

William Morris Now he spake aloud: “Nay, it was not she that gave them to me, but yet were I fain to find this woman that thou sawest; for I look to meet a friend whenas I meet her. The Well At The World’s End by William Morris [1896]

I be fain to see you in my land. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

He sent word to his wife’s kindred on the Rhine, that he would full fain be at their feasting. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Robert Louis Stevenson She was walking ever the faster, and looking fain in front of her; but at this she made a little noise in her head, and I thought she would have run. Catriona by Robert Louis Stevenson

Still, fain to read, but with the niceties of the art embarrassed, I began to question myself. My Tropic Isle by E. J. Banfield

Anthony Trollope And yet he would so fain have forgotten her — or rather have wiped away from the reality of his past life that one episode, had it been possible. John Caldigate by Anthony Trollope

Charles Kingsley What must be must, man is but dust; if you can’t get crumb, you must fain eat crust. Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley

I wot not whither, 1 proud of the prey, her path she took, fain of her fill. Beowulf by translated by Francis Gummere

Philip had answered his brother’s questions rather ambiguously at first, but in the end had been fain to confess that he had asked Mrs. Halliday to marry him, and that his suit had prospered. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

Rudeger was now armed, and with him five hundred men; thereto he gained twelve champions, who would fain win renown in the stress of battle. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Anthony Trollope Do you not know that he wishes it?’ He fain would not have answered this; but she paused for his answer and then repeated her question. The Duke’s Children by Anthony Trollope

Anthony Trollope Jacques and the old smith had no bed, so they were fain to content themselves with sitting opposite to each other on two low stools; the best seats which the hut afforded. La Vendée by Anthony Trollope

William Morris And thither came the fairest of the honourable damsels, and were fain of being her waiting-women. The Wood Beyond the World by William Morris [1894]

Ne’er heard I of host in haughtier throng more graciously gathered round giver-of-rings! Bowed then to bench those bearers-of-glory, fain of the feasting. Beowulf by translated by Francis Gummere

Mrs. Gaskell She would so fain have made sacrifices for them, and have lightened their cares, that the original generosity of her disposition added acerbity to her temper. Cranford by Mrs. Gaskell [1851-3]

Andrew Lang The fierce beasts bounded towards him, roaring loudly, and would fain have eaten him, but quickly Manus stooped and spread the cloth upon the ground. The Orange Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Charles Kingsley I have talked over these things with her many a time; and where I would fain be, she would fain be also. Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley

John Donne Their friend lay sick of the palsy, and the four charitable men were fain to bring him to Christ; he could not come. Devotions Upon Emergent Occasions and severall steps in my Sicknes by John Donne

Her prayers had not been granted — perhaps they did not come so entirely from the heart, as prayers should, that would fain bring a blessing. The Lovels of Arden by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

George Meredith Love that so desires would fain keep her changeless; Fain would fling the net, and fain have her free. Poems and Lyrics of the Joy of Earth by George Meredith [1883]

She thought he meant that he repented of his sin, and would fain do better. Red Pottage by Mary Cholmondeley [1899]

Come hither; I owe thee somewhat, and would fain pay it. The Merry Adventures of Robin Hood. by Written and illustrated by Howard Pyle

Anthony Trollope Sometimes one would fain have more of it. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

Elizabeth Barrett Browning The cup of dole God gave for baptism, I am fain to drink, And praise its sweetness, Sweet, with thee anear. Sonnets from the Portuguese by Elizabeth Barrett Browning [1850]

William Makepeace Thackeray But what then? Are we gods, Miltons, Michel Angelos, that can leave earth when we please; and soar to heights immeasurable? No, my dear MacGilp; but the fools of academicians would fain make us so. The Paris Sketch Book by William Makepeace Thackeray [1840]

Fracasse, as you represent him, loves and admires courage, and would fain be able to manifest it—he is angry with himself for being such an arrant coward. Captain Fracasse by Théophile Gautier [1863]

Mr. Smithson had business on shore, and was fain to leave the yacht for an hour or two before dinner. Phantom Fortune by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

Kriemhild’s men would fain have harmed the guests. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Tobias Smolle Sometimes he is fain to put up with bread and cheese and small beer for dinner; and sometimes he regales on twopennyworth of ox cheek in a cellar. The Adventures of Roderick Random by Tobias Smolle

William Morris Then I stepped out into the twilight which was fair and golden, and full fain I was of it. The Well At The World’s End by William Morris [1896]

Elizabeth Gaskell He was very fain of hearing all about home; and wants you to rear Daisy’s calf, as he thinks she will prove a good one. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell [1863]

William Morris Sooth to say, Ralph, taking heed of Ursula, deemed that she were fain to love him bodily, and he wotted well by now, that, whatever had befallen, he loved her, body and soul. The Well At The World’s End by William Morris [1896]

Thomas Hardy She’d fain be like Marty South — think o’ that! That’s the top of her ambition! Perhaps she’s right. The Woodlanders by Thomas Hardy

Andrew Lang Thorhall replied that it would do him no good to see him, ‘for he is unlike anything in human shape; but I am fain of every hour that you are willing to stay here’. The Book of Dreams and Ghosts by Andrew Lang

Our foes would fain ride early and beg for lasting peace of me and of my men. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Rudyard Kipling These men and women would make of all India a dung-cake, and would fain leave the mark of the fingers upon it. Many Inventions by Rudyard Kipling [1893]

Anthony Trollope She was one who would fain be doing something if she only knew how, and the first important attempt she made was to turn her respectable young Tory husband into a second-rate Whig bantling. Doctor Thorne by Anthony Trollope

Margaret Oliphant He bore it all with a devouring impatience, yet self-restraint too—not entreating her in words to let him alone for heaven’s sake! as he would so fain have done. The Wizard's Son by Margaret Oliphant [1882]

Jonathan Swif She is going to Sheen, with Lady Giffard: she would fain send your papers over to you, or give them to me. The Journal to Stella by Jonathan Swif

Her hope was, that Linton might be left with him, as he had been with her: his father, she would fain convince herself, had no desire to assume the burden of his maintenance or education. Wuthering Heights by Emily Bronte [1847]

The triumphant Alcibiades of Anne’s reign had become the boastful libertine who would fain be credited with new successes in the hour when he feels his seductive power on the wane. Mohawks by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1886]

Anthony Trollope She had an eye to see material beauty, and a taste to love it; but it was not given to her to look back and feel those things as to which her lover would fain have spoken to her. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

When Siegfried saw the angry dames (he wist not of the tale), how quickly then he spake: “I fain would know why these ladies weep, or for what cause the king hath had me fetched. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

More frequently nothing was left but the stalks; and with them, and the like unwholesome fare, they were fain to supply the cravings of appetite. The History of the Conquest of Mexico by William Hickling Prescott [1843]

Elizabeth Gaskell As for Lucy, she would fain have submitted to the doom that lay upon her. The Poor Clare by Elizabeth Gaskell [1856]

I fain would flee, and I wist whither I might; go, for never will I lie close by your side, unless ye tell me through what cause Kriemhild be Siegfried’s bride. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Anthony Trollope I am now leaving the Green Isle and my old friends, and would fain say a word of them as I do so. Castle Richmond by Anthony Trollope

Walter Scott Besides, a man would fain live out his two years with a good conscience. The Heart of Mid-Lothian by Walter Scott [1818]

Grizzel attempted to hide them in her gown when she saw me, but was not quick enough, so she was fain to hold them openly in her hand, and make believe to be busy with her milk-pail. Going to the Mop by Ellen Wood [1871]

And we recognise Him, and would fain go to meet Him. But our companions and our own fears dissuade us. Red Pottage by Mary Cholmondeley [1899]

Elizabeth Gaskell I often run upstairs and watch ’em out o’ t’ window; he doesn’t care to have me with ’em, he’s so fain t’ have t’ child all to hisself. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell [1863]

Robert Burns And mony a ane that I could tell, Wha fain would openly rebel, Forbye turn-coats amang oursel, There’s Smith for ane, I doubt he’s but a grey-nick quill, An’ that ye’ll fin’. The Poetical Works of Robert Burns by Robert Burns

Jack London I would have fain rubbed my eyes and looked again, for, as far as I could see, the rocks bordering upon the ocean were covered with seals. The Star Rover by Jack London [1915]

Thomas Carlyle Souls are no longer filled with their Fetish; but only pretend to be filled, and would fain make themselves feel that they are filled. On Heroes and Hero Worship and the Heroic in History by Thomas Carlyle

Thomas Hardy With added years, more of the faculties attempt a partnership in the passion, till at Knight’s age the understanding is fain to have a hand in it. A Pair of Blue Eyes by Thomas Hardy [1899]

Anthony Trollope She would so fain have been able to think that the beginning only had as yet come to them. Castle Richmond by Anthony Trollope

Just in this state, when we would have fain believed that every mile we went, carried us two towards Memphis, a sudden and violent shock startled us frightfully. Domestic Manners of the Americans by Fanny Trollope

A wave of tenderness poured into their hearts; they would fain have embraced and wept together. A Love Episode by Émile Zola [1878]

They do but challenge the counter-verdict, and force men to recall facts which, if they cannot forget, they would fain leave in silence. Robert Burns by John Campbell Shairp [1879]

Else then would fain avenge the knight, but he and his fellowship parted from the fray with scathe. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

Anthony Trollope He knew well the handwriting of each, and would fain have escaped with them from the room. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

Anthony Trollope Is it right that she should be blamed for such self-denial? But now the skittles and beer had come after her, as those delights will sometimes pursue the prudent youth who would fain avoid them. Miss Mackenzie by Anthony Trollope [1865]

R. D. Blackmore Being a large heir, he is not selfish, but would fain share his blessings with a little one. Mary Anerley by R. D. Blackmore [1880]

But now and then there is hatched a wild young fledgeling, which beats its wings against the inexorable wires, and would fain soar away into that wide outer world, to prosper or perish in its freedom. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

William Morris As for jewels, each one of them was fain to give her something which he prized, and fair and rich were the gifts, though they had not been made for women. The Water of the Wondrous Isles by William Morris [1897]

Anthony Trollope She still would fain have forbidden the banns had any power of forbidding remained in her hands. Ayala’s Angel by Anthony Trollope

The lady, that seemed the most considerable among them, entreated me to sit by her, and would fain have undressed me for the bath. Letters from Turkey by Mary Wortley Montagu [1725]

She grasped the girdle around her waist and would fain have bound him, but his hand prevented it in such a wise that her limbs and all her body cracked. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

And while on the subject of the clemency of trees, I am fain to dispose of another adventure, since it, too, illustrates the brief interval between the sunny this and the gloomy that. My Tropic Isle by E. J. Banfield

Elizabeth Gaskell In a week or two Betty was in floods of tears at the prospect of leaving her nursling, and would fain have stayed and answered all the bells in the house once every quarter of an hour. Wives and Daughters by Elizabeth Gaskell [1865]

H. Rider Haggard She makes herself sweet to that old Earl and he is fain of her, and that is beyond my sight. Eric Brighteyes by H. Rider Haggard

Anthony Trollope But now — She sate so for about an hour, and would fain have so sat out the day. Framley Parsonage by Anthony Trollope

He clung, therefore, to these men, and was fain to accept their homage in the hour of his decline; and it was with such men as these he had spent the night before his death. Eleanor's Victory by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1863]

Elizabeth Gaskell I think she would have fain run away again; but her fit of energy was all spent. Cousin Phillis by Elizabeth Gaskell [1864]

Elizabeth Gaskell She tried to speak, I could see; but something rose in her throat, and choked her, and until she could speak calmly, she would fain not speak at all before a stranger. The Poor Clare by Elizabeth Gaskell [1856]

She wrapped her dead love in it, and would fain have buried it out of her sight. Red Pottage by Mary Cholmondeley [1899]

The susceptible poet, who in the sunless north would fain have “sported with the tangles of Neaera’s hair,” could not behold Neaera herself and the flashing splendour of her eye, unmoved. Milton by Mark Pattison [1879]

Benjamin Disraeli It is bitter to resign the seals we fain would keep. The Young Duke by Benjamin Disraeli [1831]

Jonathan Swif I would have fain given the man half a crown; but was afraid to offer it him, lest he should be offended; for, beside his money, he said he had a thousand pounds a year. The Journal to Stella by Jonathan Swif

Thorgeir saw the fall of his brother Gunnar, and was fain to draw off. The Story of Grettir the Strong by translated by William Morris and Eiríkr Magnússon [1869]

Elizabeth Gaskell When Maggie saw him repel the hand that fain would have stroked his hair as in childish days, a longing came into her heart for some of these uncared-for tokens of her mother’s love. The Moorland Cottage by Elizabeth Gaskell [1851]

The vanquished is fain to accept whatever the victor is pleased to give, though discontent and impotent rage may be gnawing his entrails. Charlotte’s Inheritance by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1868]

And now was he fain to descend, but the hippogriff snorted and reared, and he, fearing a great fall, clung closer. The Worm Ouroboros by E. R. Eddison [1922]

Enow of the king’s liegemen would fain have parted the strife, but Hagen would not give up his plan. The Nibelungenlied by translated by Daniel B. Shumway

James Joyce If goosseys gazious would but fain smile him a smile he would be fondling a praise he ate some nice bit of fluff. Finnegans Wake by James Joyce

William Makepeace Thackeray Some hit, some missed; those that missed were fain to retire amidst the jeers of the multitudinous spectators. A Legend of the Rhine by William Makepeace Thackeray [1845]

William Morris Meanwhile, I rede thee try him not with buffets, save he be weaponless and with bounden hands; or else I deem that but a little while shalt thou be fain of thy blow. The Wood Beyond the World by William Morris [1894]

George Gissing King Totila himself has heard of her, and would fain behold this ornament of his race. Veranilda by George Gissing [1903]