Phrases with "meaning"

Anthony Trollope The trade to learn! However, I said not a word, but stalked out of the room, meaning to see her no more before she went. Tales of all countries by Anthony Trollope

By using stale metaphors, similes and idioms, you save much mental effort at the cost of leaving your meaning vague, not only for your reader but for yourself. Politics and the English Language by George Orwell

James Hogg I objected to the words as equivocal, and susceptible of being rendered in a meaning perfectly dreadful; but he reasoned against this, and all reasoning with him is to no purpose. The Private Memoirs and Confessions of a Justified Sinner by James Hogg [1824]

George Meredith I cannot be instantly ready for every meaning in the world. Sandra Belloni by George Meredith [1887]

William Morris Their talk and their laughter mingling with the music of the meads Has now no meaning to me to help or to hinder my needs, So far from them have I drifted. The Pilgrims of Hope by William Morris [1915]

Charles Dudley Warner The Moors could not comprehend the meaning of this inaction of the Christians, after having apparently invited a battle. Washington Irving by Charles Dudley Warner

They hurried off to discover the meaning of this startling sound, but were neither of them very clear as to whence it had come. Fenton’s Quest by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1871]

Sigmund Freud At that time I was of the opinion (recognized later to be incorrect) that my task was limited to informing patients of the hidden meaning of their symptoms. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

Such words are vague and such ideas are inadequate, but their meaning is unmistakable. Memories and Studies by William James

Elizabeth Gaskell She was reading a letter slowly, as if its words were familiar to her, yet as though she were trying afresh to extract some fuller or some different meaning from their construction. Six Weeks at Heppenheim by Elizabeth Gaskell [1862]

Probably it is better to put off using words as long as possible and get one’s meaning as clear as one can through pictures or sensations. Politics and the English Language by George Orwell

Muffled, strange, and startling it came from above, from the hollow spaces of that high vault lit with the golden glow that henceforth can have but one meaning for me — death. The Circular Study by Anna Katharine Green

All stared with amazement; while they regarded it as the insane boast of a man too eager to procure his liberty to weigh the meaning of his words. The History of the Conquest of Peru by William Hickling Presco

This has the definite mechanical meaning of resisting separation, of sticking together; but Spencer plays fast and loose with this meaning. Memories and Studies by William James

Thomas Carlyle But in the days that are now passing over us, even fools are arrested to ask the meaning of them; few of the generations of men have seen more impressive days. Latter-Day Pamphlets by Thomas Carlyle

E. F. Benson It was parrot-like, it was glib and without conviction and sense of the true meaning of the words, when she said it was wrong to make a “cure” for a sign. The House of Defence by E. F. Benson [1906]

Virginia Woolf But in order to consolidate these flimsy guesses about the meaning of an expression on a face, let me open another of the books on your table and check it by what I find there. The Death of the Moth and other essays by Virginia Woolf [1942]

Anthony Trollope All this Edith knew,—except the Latin. The meaning of it had been brought home to her by her own light. The Landleaguers by Anthony Trollope [1883]

Arthur Conan Doyle Charles Sadler must know something of this! His vague words of warning take a meaning now. The Parasite by Arthur Conan Doyle [1894]

I thought she was boasting about her family, and then slowly the meaning came to me. The New Machiavelli by Herbert George Wells [1911]

He was too bewildered at first to grasp the meaning of my words. Marvels and Mysteries by Richard Marsh

Margaret Oliphant She had no reason to call Mrs. Methven poor, but did it as a child does, with a meaning of kindness. The Wizard's Son by Margaret Oliphant [1882]

Fix. This is, in America, a word-of-all-work, most frequently meaning repair, or prepare. Write it Right by Ambrose Bierce [1909]

G. K. Chesterton We feel that men without meaning to do so might easily begin by breaking a social by-law and end by being thoroughly anti-social. Robert Browning by G. K. Chesterton [1903]

Thomas Hardy Yet it seemed to have more meaning than common. Desperate Remedies by Thomas Hardy [1871]

Aurora lifted her head from her husband’s breast, and looked wonderingly into his face, utterly unable to guess the meaning of these broken sentences. Aurora Floyd by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1863]

Oscar Wilde To imagine that the ‘powerful rhyme’ of the second line refers to the sonnet itself, is to mistake Shakespeare’s meaning entirely. The Portrait of Mr. W. H. by Oscar Wilde [1889]

Talkative replies, “You lie at a catch, I perceive,”— meaning that he is sophistical. A Study of Hawthorne by G. P. Lathrop [1876]

Edgar Rice Burroughs He could not fathom the meaning of the faces within, but he could read the interest and fascination upon the face of the live young creature by his side. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs [1912]

Her mouth was uttering its own habits, but the meaning of those habits was not her own. All Hallows’ Eve by Charles Williams [1945]

Henry James He had kept saying to himself “Gloucester, Gloucester, Gloucester,” quite as if the sharpest meaning of all the years just passed were intensely expressed in it. The Golden Bowl by Henry James [1904]

Anthony Trollope The meaning of that is, that if a girl is doomed to have a dull life she had better not begin it with a little pleasure. Ayala’s Angel by Anthony Trollope

George Meredith It is a tussle for money with them as with us, meaning power. Celt and Saxon by George Meredith [1910]

Lastly, Desrolles, who seemed to have slept more heavily than the other two on that particular night, came rushing out of his room to ask the meaning of that hideous summons. The Cloven Foot by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1879]

Sigmund Freud I thought of what seemed to me a venturesome explanation of the hidden meaning of the apparently quite asexual word violets by an unconscious relation to the French viol. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

William Hope Hodgson As I came near to them, I caught two or three words; though I attached no meaning then to them. The Ghost Pirates by William Hope Hodgson

Algernon Blackwood Now to learn the meaning of the worlds, and why mankind was made, and why discipline is worth while, and sacrifice and pain the true law of advancement. The Man Who Found Out by Algernon Blackwood

John Morley The old harmony was to them so bound up with the purpose and meaning of life, that to wage active battle for the gods of their reverence was the irresistible instinct of self-preservation. Burke by John Morley [1879]

Joseph Furphy For the music thus impassively anatomised by Science is a voice from the Unseen, pregnant with meaning beyond translation. Such is Life by Joseph Furphy

Ralph Waldo Emerson In the social interests, he knew the meaning and value of labor, and threw himself naturally on that side. Representative Men by Ralph Waldo Emerson [1850]

G. K. Chesterton A man will put his meaning mystically because he cannot waste time in putting it rationally. George Bernard Shaw by G. K. Chesterton [1909]

If we ask what is the deeper meaning of all these vast changes, I think there can be but one reply. Science and Education by Thomas Henry Huxley

That meaning is gone out of it. Write it Right by Ambrose Bierce [1909]

Thomas Carlyle Charles Second and his Rochesters were not the kind of men you would set to judge what the worth or meaning of such men might have been. On Heroes and Hero Worship and the Heroic in History by Thomas Carlyle

Elizabeth Gaskell He does not understand the meaning of what he says. The Doom of the Griffiths by Elizabeth Gaskell [1858]

Marie Corelli If I were younger, I could express perhaps my meaning more clearly — but as it is, my soul is weighted with unutterable thoughts — I would almost call them warnings — of some threatening evil; . The Master-Christian by Marie Corelli [1900]

George Meredith But after all, the main secret was his art of writing round English, instead of laborious Latinised periods: and the secret of the art was his meaning what he said. Celt and Saxon by George Meredith [1910]

This object in my hand had become endowed with moral meaning — significant, like a symbol — only to be torn from me with my life. Romance by Joseph Conrad and Ford Madox Ford [1903]

Sigmund Freud The meaning of this affecting dream is simple enough, and the explanation given by the lecturer, as my patient reported it, was correct. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

D. H. Lawrence She could ascribe no meaning to him, none whatever. The Captain’s Doll by D. H. Lawrence

Emma turned to catch the meaning of his remark. Beasts and Super-Beasts by Saki

Andrew Lang So without more ado he told the story of the circle, and ended by declaring that the person who could explain its meaning should be handsomely rewarded. The Olive Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

George Meredith There cannot be an error, Chillon. It seems to show, that he has embraced the serious meaning of the word—or seriously embraced the meaning, reads’ better. The Amazing Marriage by George Meredith [1895]

Don’t you know us?” She nodded gravely to them in recognition, but she was unwilling to speak to them; she was in a thoughtful mood, and she cast a look full of meaning on her mother. A Love Episode by Émile Zola [1878]

Victor Hugo There is a meaning in all monarchical buildings. The Man Who Laughs by Victor Hugo [1869]

Anthony Trollope The meaning of this is, that had he not been very much in earnest, I should have considered it best to let the matter pass on as such matters do, and be forgotten. Dr. Wortle’s school by Anthony Trollope

Charles Kingsley Let me illustrate my meaning by an example. Science by Charles Kingsley

Edith Wharton But above all abhorrent to ears piously attuned to all the inflexions and shades of meaning of our rich speech were such mean substitutes as “back of” for behind, “dirt” for earth (i. A Backward Glance by Edith Wharton [1934]

Anthony Trollope He had, in an unguarded moment, when the weather had been warm and the champagne cool, said a word with so definite a meaning that the lady had been justified in not allowing it to pass by as idle. Is He Popenjoy? by Anthony Trollope [1878]

E. Phillips Oppenheim It could have no meaning for him. The Amazing Judgment by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1897]

Arthur Morrison The meaning of the loaves, the cart, and the spring-mattress was now plain. The Chronicles of Martin Hewitt by Arthur Morrison

D. H. Lawrence She was a beaten woman, a woman without object or meaning any more. Mother and Daughter by D. H. Lawrence [1929]

Was there some meaning in such foolish shadows, after all? “And why was I not sent for?” “You were asleep, sir. Charlotte’s Inheritance by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1868]

Rudyard Kipling They took the whipping-chains and rattled them in their trunks as they sidled up to Moti Guj, meaning to hustle him between them. Life’s Handicap by Rudyard Kipling [1891]

That third glass has a meaning if only we could find it out. The House of the Whispering Pines by Anna Katharine Green

And we must proceed to inquire what is the real meaning of the word “contemporaneous” as employed by geologists. Geological contemporaneity and persistent types of life by Thomas Henry Huxley

Gaston Leroux Then, by listening and by piecing together scraps of phrases inconsistent with the idea of treachery, but which immediately acquired meaning if one thought of the opposite, of sacrifice. The Secret of the Night by Gaston Leroux [1913]

Henry Adams In seven years he could remember only two that seemed to have any meaning for him, and he never knew what that meaning was. The Education of Henry Adams by Henry Adams [1907]

E. Phillips Oppenheim They went there meaning to put you out, but they changed their minds. The Lion and the Lamb by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1930]

Anthony Trollope It was not that he was jealous — not jealous in the ordinary meaning of the word. The Prime Minister by Anthony Trollope

Jack London For instance, has Civilisation bettered the lot of man? “Man,” I use in its democratic sense, meaning the average man. The People of the Abyss by Jack London [1903]

Thomas Hobbes The Apostles sent diverse letters to the Churches, and other writings for their instruction; which had been in vain if they had not allowed them to interpret, that is, to consider the meaning of them. Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes

D. H. Lawrence The meaning of everything all came down with a smash in that shuddering earthquake, and nothing remains but money and the throes of some sort of sensation. Sea and Sardinia by D. H. Lawrence [1921]

George Meredith I hope my meaning is clear?’ ‘Quite. You would have boxing with the gloves to be a kind of monastic recreation. One of our Conquerors by George Meredith [1891]

M. R. James When he was better able to express his views, Humphreys made his meaning clear, and received a promise that the thing should be done at once. More Ghost Stories of an Antiquary by M. R. James

H. G. Wells Lady Osprey, with her skirts gathered for the ascent to the gallery and her hand on the newel, turned and addressed a look full of meaning overflowing indeed with meanings — at her charge. Tono Bungay by H. G. Wells [1909]

The financier’s last words came to his mind: “Confess all to your wife; she can get you out of this difficulty!” He understood the meaning of them, and resolved to follow the advice. Serge Panine by Georges Ohnet [1881]

Leon Trotsky That was the meaning of the legislative work during the first period. My Life by Leon Trotsky

George Meredith Such meaning in a dagger-day Our wits may clasp to wax in power. A Reading of Earth by George Meredith [1888]

Maria Edgeworth The English reader will please to inquire the meaning of this phrase from any Irish courtier. Ormond by Maria Edgeworth

Andrew Lang Miss Angus now asked, ‘Where is my little lady?’ — meaning the lady of the twirling parasol and staccato walk. The Making of Religion by Andrew Lang

He was removing meaning itself from the words. All Hallows’ Eve by Charles Williams [1945]

Guy de Maupassant Failing to grasp the meaning of the situation he remained silent. The Olive Grove (Le Champ d'Oliviers) by Guy de Maupassant [1890]

Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch They loaded themselves with as much as they could carry, and started for home, meaning to make a second journey before the preventive men got wind of their doings, and came to spoil the fun. The Roll-Call of the Reef by Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

Di did not know the meaning of a certain stolid look which John’s countenance could occasionally take. Diana Tempest by Mary Cholmondeley [1893]

Mark Twain One meaning of invent is discover. What is Man? and other essays by Mark Twain

How prejudiced she was against Lettice Lane! But she had given this last answer only in the same jesting spirit in which it appeared to have been put, not really meaning it. Lady Jenkins by Ellen Wood [1879]

Then another arm flashed into view, and at last Colin knew the meaning of the silent drama of whose actors he had yet seen but one. Citadel of Fear by Francis Stevens

Leon Trotsky There was the cabinetmaker in his bowler, Korotkov, who had done with all mystics long ago, a jocular fellow and a rhymester who would say solemnly, “I am a rationlist,” meaning a rationalist. My Life by Leon Trotsky

Andrew Lang On the thirteenth Blount again wrote from Cumnor, meaning to join Dudley next day: ‘I I have ALMOST NOTHING that can make me so much [as?] to think that any man can be the doer of it . The Valet’s Tragedy by Andrew Lang

No animal in England knows the meaning of happiness or leisure after he is a year old. Animal Farm by George Orwell [1944]

Theodore Dreiser I was talking to Terrence Relihan, who represents them up there”— meaning Harrisburg, the State capital —“and he says they won’t stand for it at all. The Financier by Theodore Dreiser

William Henry Bragg It is not necessary to attach as yet any meaning to the term corpuscle, other than that which the conclusions require. Studies in Radioactivity by William Henry Bragg [1912]

I said to him, “Let us wait till Grant arrives; we shall then have some one with us who won’t shrink from whispers”— meaning Bombay; and so I let the matter drop for the time being. The Discovery of the Source of the Nile by John Hanning Speke [1863]

George Gissing Thyrza’s suffering, he said to himself, had not the grave meaning he had feared; it was something that must be sacred from his search. Thyrza by George Gissing [1887]

Sigmund Freud In this new application of the words the dream has often ignored the meaning which they had in the dream-thoughts, and has drawn an entirely new meaning from them. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

William Hope Hodgson Yet, when I questioned more, there was much that had been in my fancies that was foreign to her, and likewise much that had been familiar to her, that was of no meaning to me. The Night Land by William Hope Hodgson

E. Phillips Oppenheim It is one of the charms of untrammelled life that the clock has no meaning for us. The Amazing Judgment by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1897]

Beneath his ample forehead, on which seemed to shine the reflection of a lamp, there were brown, gold-spangled eyes which expressed their owner’s meaning as clearly as his speech. Balzac by Frederick Lawton

Charles Kingsley This was the meaning of last night’s canzonet! This was why its words had seemed to fit his own heart so well! His brother was his rival. Westward Ho! by Charles Kingsley

Charles Dickens The head engineer has distinctly said that there never was such timesmeaning weather — and four good hands are ill, and have given in, dead beat. American Notes for General Circulation by Charles Dickens [1842]

That little conscious look, which stirred this weak heart so tumultuously, is no doubt common to her when she knows herself beloved and admired, and has no meaning that can flatter my foolish hopes. Birds of Prey by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1867]

George Eliot With these thoughts he had sat down quietly to his work, meaning not to vex his soul by going to look on at things he would fain have made different if he could. Felix Holt the Radical by George Eliot [1866]

John Lewis Burckhard They have the title of “Ras,” meaning head, as Ras Edris, Ras Mohammed, &c. Travels in Nubia by John Lewis Burckhard

R. D. Blackmore As nice a young partner as a lad could want, and his meaning was to buckle to for the winter. Mary Anerley by R. D. Blackmore [1880]

Virginia Woolf He explained his meaning no further. Night and Day by Virginia Woolf [1919]

A great deal of her conversation was carried on by hints; she generally contrived, however, to make her meaning reasonably clear. Burmese Days by George Orwell

Sigmund Freud The meaning is that I envy certain relatives who years ago had occasion to transplant their children to the soil of another country. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

Henry James He was a personage of great presence and weight, with a large smooth face in which a small sharp meaning was planted like a single pin in the tight red toilet-cushion of a guest-chamber. Covering End by Henry James [1898]

Edgar Rice Burroughs Kala was the youngest mate of a male called Tublat, meaning broken nose, and the child she had seen dashed to death was her first; for she was but nine or ten years old. Tarzan of the Apes by Edgar Rice Burroughs [1912]

Elizabeth Gaskell I wanted summat to consider about, and for th’ meaning to be wrapped up as I wrap up my best gown. Ruth by Elizabeth Gaskell [1853]

John Locke Names of simple ideas of less doubtful meaning than those of mixed modes and substances. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding by John Locke [1690]

They carried no meaning to him. Initials Only by Anna Katharine Green

Charles Dickens Old Barley was growling and swearing when we repassed his door, with no appearance of having ceased or of meaning to cease. Great Expectations by Charles Dickens [1860]

Abdulla understood the meaning of that silence, and rose to take leave with a grave salaam. Almayer’s Folly by Joseph Conrad [1895]

James Joyce That was the meaning of TOWER OF IVORY but protestants could not understand it and made fun of it. A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man by James Joyce

Anthony Trollope Gerard was very awkward in conveying his meaning to his father. Phineas Redux by Anthony Trollope

H. Rider Haggard Alas! he knew too well the meaning of this lassitude and nausea, and of the racking pain which from time to time shot through his head and limbs. The People of the Mist by H. Rider Haggard

And there was now an added infinity of meaning in the words; though it was the words that had thrilled her then — then, before she had brought all the present misery to pass. A Bride from the Bush by E. W. Hornung [1890]

Rudyard Kipling The meaning of the guardian tigers, the inwardness of the main pagoda, and the countless little ones, was hidden from me. From Sea to Sea by Rudyard Kipling [1899]

Robert Louis Stevenson Her attraction is romantic in the narrowest meaning of the term. Edinburgh Picturesque Notes by Robert Louis Stevenson

R. D. Blackmore But you could not expect me so to love you all at once as I love you now, dear Insie.” “I can not understand any meaning in such things. Mary Anerley by R. D. Blackmore [1880]

George Meredith Chorister blackbird and thrush Together or alternate piped; A free-hearted harmony large, With meaning for man, for brute, When the primitive forces are brimmed. A Reading of Earth by George Meredith [1888]

She opened the door softly, meaning to steal in and surprise her husband in some pleasant reverie, but on the threshold she stopped appalled, struck dumb. The Cloven Foot by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1879]

Sigmund Freud A few days later I discovered the meaning of this series of pictures. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

Joseph Furphy She was essentially low — if you understand my meaning — low in her tastes and aspirations, low in her likes and dislikes, low in her thoughts and her language, low in everything. Such is Life by Joseph Furphy

Henry James Hitherwards she more than once strolled with him, bareheaded and meaning to go but twenty rods, but always going good-naturedly further and often stretching it to the freedom of a promenade. Madame de Mauves by Henry James [1874]

He was so astounded he could only say, with an instinct of self-defence, “Pray for the soul of Gerard the son of Eli!” meaning that he was dead to the world. The Cloister and the Hearth by Charles Reade

G. K. Chesterton We did the maddest things we could think of, meaning them to look mad. Tales of the Long Bow by G. K. Chesterton [1925]

Charles Dickens I can see th’ meaning of it, thof I’m too proud to let on. The Haunted House by Charles Dickens [1859]

Arthur Conan Doyle Yet this other must have a meaning, or why should she risk her life to place it in our hands? It would say little for our wits if we could not find out what that meaning might be. The Exploits of Brigadier Gerard by Arthur Conan Doyle [1896]

The sound was small in Carthew’s ears, like the voices of men miles away, but the meaning of each word struck home to him like a bullet. The Wrecker by Robert Louis Stevenson and Lloyd Osbourne

Olaf Stapledon Yet in the rear-gunner’s mind some dark, threatening hint of their possible meaning bore heavily down. Death into Life by Olaf Stapledon

Mrs. Jukes knew the meaning of that harsh and rabid summons. The House by the Church-Yard by J. Sheridan Le Fanu

Virginia Woolf Shades of meaning reveal themselves; the pompous language becomes delicate and exact. The Death of the Moth and other essays by Virginia Woolf [1942]

Andrew Lang Full of wrath they ran to Simon’s house, and, refusing to listen to a word of explanation or excuse, they seized the old man and put him into a sack, meaning to drown him in the neighbouring river. The Green Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

He would have justice; meaning by justice, blood for blood, a life for a life. The Tragedy in the Palazzo Bardello by Amelia B. Edwards

Robert Louis Stevenson It is quite true, no doubt; but it has no meaning in the world to any man of us. Lay Morals by Robert Louis Stevenson

Henry Handel Richardson There is to be opossuming and a moonlight picnic to-night at Warraluen.” Catching Mahony’s eye fixed on her with a meaning emphasis, she changed colour. Australia Felix by Henry Handel Richardson

Is it meaning to rest? Will its impatient heart endure to lurk there for long? Ask, rather, if a cataract will stop from fatigue. Suspiria de Profundis by Thomas De Quincey [1845]

Gaston Leroux Mademoiselle Stangerson inquired the meaning of all the disturbance. Mystery of the Yellow Room by Gaston Leroux [1907]

Sigmund Freud So far, we have endeavoured mainly to ascertain wherein the secret meaning of the dream consists, how it is to be discovered, and what means the dream-work uses to conceal it. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

The yearly wool money would be:- I will explain briefly the meaning of this. A First Year in Canterbury Settlement by Samuel Butler

Elizabeth Gaskell She liked him better, too, than she had done a year or two before, because he did not show her any of the eager attention which teased her then, although its meaning was not fully understood. Sylvia’s Lovers by Elizabeth Gaskell [1863]

Wilkie Collins It was impossible that a man of his fineness of perception could mistake the meaning of Horace’s conduct toward him. The New Magdalen by Wilkie Collins [1873]

John Stuart Mill It is evident that this cannot be proof in the ordinary and popular meaning of the term. Utilitarianism by John Stuart Mill

James Joyce Please tell me what is the real meaning of that word? Are you not happy in your home you poor little naughty boy? I do wish I could do something for you. Ulysses by James Joyce [1922]

Sigmund Freud We now perceive that we should have reached our theory of the hidden meaning of dreams by the shortest route had we merely consulted the vernacular. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

H. G. Wells Shut them up, and the meaning of a street has disappeared. Russia in the Shadows by H. G. Wells

I had an idea that there was no meaning in anything, at least no meaning that mattered. The Arrow of Gold by Joseph Conrad [1919]

Then at length, Somali fashion, the true meaning of his unwelcome visit transpired. Journal of Adventures in Somali Land by John Hanning Speke [1864]

Arthur Conan Doyle I can hardly hope, by the use of scientific language, to convey any sense of my meaning to those ineffectual people who gather their ideas from the columns of a daily newspaper. The Poison Belt by Arthur Conan Doyle [1913]

And the abuse had a meaning in it: it was abuse of a revolutionary. Landmarks in Literature--French by Lytton Strachey

Henry James When they had reached the even ground Fleda was able to read the meaning of the exclamation in which Mrs. Gereth had expressed her reserves on the subject of Miss Brigstock’s personality. The Spoils of Poynton by Henry James [1897]

D. H. Lawrence The officials tease themselves and us with the word pronto, meaning ready! Pronto! And again Pronto! And shrill whistles. Sea and Sardinia by D. H. Lawrence [1921]

The writer either has a meaning and cannot express it, or he inadvertently says something else, or he is almost indifferent as to whether his words mean anything or not. Politics and the English Language by George Orwell

What was the meaning of this? Heyst raised his voice—a thing he disliked doing. Victory by Joseph Conrad [1914]

Wilkie Collins I tried to find out why I had said Yes. I don’t remember being conscious of meaning anything. The Legacy of Cain by Wilkie Collins [1889]

What was the meaning of the outrage? he was asking himself, and the only answer he could give covered him in a cold sweat from head to foot. The Master Spy by Arthur Gask [1936]

John Locke Fourth remedy: To declare the meaning in which we use them. An Essay Concerning Human Understanding by John Locke [1690]

What is the meaning of that? There is no meaning in it, none. In the World by Maksim Gorky

Charlotte Perkins Gilman But there are some things one takes for granted, supposes are mutually understood, and to which both parties may repeatedly refer without ever meaning the same thing. Herland by Charlotte Perkins Gilman [1915]

Marjorie Bowen There was a meaning pause, and Orleans grew restless in the silence and moved away. The Viper of Milan by Marjorie Bowen [1906]

H. Rider Haggard Then he turned to Otter and rapidly explained to him the meaning of all that was being done. The People of the Mist by H. Rider Haggard

Sir Walter Scott Edward was particularly solicitous to know the meaning of that song which appeared to produce such effect upon the passions of the company, and hinted his curiosity to his host. Waverley by Sir Walter Scott [1829]

They conveyed no meaning to her mind. Her Father’s Name by Florence Marryat [1878]

Watkin Tench But the appellation by which they generally distinguished us was that of ‘bereewolgal’, meaning men come from afar. A Complete Account of the Settlement at Port Jackson by Watkin Tench

I didn’t perceive the meaning at first, and only looked at him. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad [1900]

Anatole France But there is a very clear meaning in them, my love; that is, that one should not lightly disengage one’s self from what one has taken into the heart. The Red Lily by Anatole France [1894]

Rudyard Kipling Chinn, flushed with triumph, was in the thick of it, but the meaning of the mysteries was hidden. The Day’s Work by Rudyard Kipling [1898]

Anthony Trollope She had owned to him — for, in truth, such had been the meaning of her warning to him — that, though she had married another man, she had loved and did love him. Phineas Finn by Anthony Trollope

Anthony Trollope But he was a man far too generous to take all this as meaning aught that it did not mean — too generous, and intrinsically too manly. Phineas Redux by Anthony Trollope

Leslie Stephen His precision and firmness of touch enables him to get the greatest possible meaning into a narrow compass. Alexander Pope by Leslie Stephen [1880]

Baldwin Spencer What, was the meaning of this we could not find out. Native tribes of the Northern Territory of Australia by Baldwin Spencer

Algernon Blackwood And” he hesitated “there’s meaning in it of some kind. The Bright Messenger by Algernon Blackwood [1922]

William Morris To have a meaning and to make others feel and understand it, must ever be the aim and end of our Western art. Hopes and Fears for Art by William Morris [1882]

H. G. Wells The meaning of these things dawned upon him. When the Sleeper Wakes by H. G. Wells [1899]

George Gissing You feel you are among people who tub o’ mornings and know the meaning of leisure. In the Year of Jubilee by George Gissing [1894]

Think of all those poor little children, Celia, who hardly know the meaning of the word pleasure, as rich people understand it. The Cloven Foot by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1879]

You said also — I call to mind — that “giving your life up to them” (them meaning all of mankind with skins brown, yellow, or black in colour) “was like selling your soul to a brute. Lord Jim by Joseph Conrad [1900]

There was still a certain element of awe connected with Grail, and Grail Feast, but of the real meaning and origin of the incidents he had, I am convinced, no idea whatever. From Ritual to Romance by Jessie L. Weston [1920]

Bronislaw Malinowski They have found the greatest difficulty in conveying to a European reader the meaning of different terms of relationship. The Family among the Australian Aborigines by Bronislaw Malinowski [1913]

Thomas Hardy Tess guessed at once the meaning of this. Tess of the d’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy

A lady had alighted from her carriage to ask or, rather, command him to get up a team to play ‘the young gentlemen’, meaning her sons, on holidays from school, and a few of their friends. Lark Rise to Candleford by Flora Thompson [1945]

Edith Wharton Had their speech been articulate their language would have been incomprehensible; and even that far-off murmur of meaning pressed intolerably on Claudia’s nerves. Crucial Instances by Edith Wharton [1901]

It is the not meaning to that ees rrreprehensible. Miss Pym Disposes by Josephine Tey

The meaning of these changes is obvious, namely, that the petioles may firmly and durably support the stem. The Movements and Habits of Climbing Plants by Charles Darwin

T. E. Lawrence My Arabs crouched in their place, meaning to fight like cornered animals, and kill at least some of the enemy before they themselves died. Seven Pillars of Wisdom by T. E. Lawrence [1926]

It was to the post office in the little village about a mile away she was meaning to go. The Storm Breaks by Arthur Gask [1949]

E. Phillips Oppenheim But what had he to do with her? What was the meaning of his dishevelled appearance and disjointed words? Powers looked at him steadily. A Sleeping Memory by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1902]

H. G. Wells I am no Individualist, I am no Socialist; these are phrases left over by the Nineteenth Century, and little meaning remains in them now. The Autocracy of Mr. Parham by H. G. Wells [1930]

Tobias Smolle Roused by this entreaty, the Hungarian’s jealousy awoke, and with violent agitation, he exclaimed, “Then are my fears too true, my dear Fathom: I comprehend the meaning of your request. The Adventures of Ferdinand Count Fathom by Tobias Smolle

Andrew Lang At last he reached a country where he was told that the people did not even know the meaning of the word death. The Red Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Edith Wharton In reality, the incident had a meaning out of proportion to its apparent seriousness, for it put in his hand a clue to a new side of his wife’s character. The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton [1913]

Virginia Woolf It was obvious to him that his wife had entirely confused the meaning of his instructions. Night and Day by Virginia Woolf [1919]

They all watched this ceremony with very sober faces, and I could not quite make out whether they took my meaning or not. A Strange Manuscript Found in a Copper Cylinder by James De Mille [1888]

George Gissing The reply she had received to her letter was not at all what she wanted; it increased her impatience; she had read it endless times, trying to get at the very meaning of it. Demos by George Gissing [1886]

Sigmund Freud The dream often appears to have several meanings; not only may several wish-fulfilments be combined in it, as our examples show, but one meaning or one wish-fulfilment may conceal another. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

He took an oath to this effect on the night he first brought me home to this house, and fully explained the meaning of that oath to me, though I was quite a child at that time. The Cloven Foot by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1879]

E. Phillips Oppenheim The little drama, whatever its meaning might have been, was played out. The Strange Boarders of Palace Crescent by E. Phillips Oppenheim [1934]