Phrases with "years"

Andrew Lang He went to find out little Day, and saw him with a little foil in his hand, with which he was fencing with a great monkey, the child being then only three years of age. The Blue Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Arthur Conan Doyle She might have been five-and-thirty years of age, with aquiline nose, firm yet sensitive mouth, dark curving brows, and deep-set eyes which shone and sparkled with a shifting brilliancy. The White Company by Arthur Conan Doyle [1891]

William Godwin It is thus that she speaks of her in her Letters from Norway, written ten years after her decease. Memoirs of the Author of a Vindication of the Rights of Woman by William Godwin [1798]

Though years have elapsed since it happened, I can feel the agony of that moment as plainly now as if it was but yesterday. The Lust of Hate by Guy Boothby [1898]

Anthony Trollope I suppose a man could do it in about thirty years if he lived so long. The Prime Minister by Anthony Trollope

Edith Wharton Well, some fifteen years ago, in London, I ran across Neave at Christie’s. Tales of Men and Ghosts by Edith Wharton [1910]

Monsieur Picard, my fellow-servant, Monsieur the Comte’s gentleman, he has been years in his service, and knows everything; but he never speaks except to communicate an order. The Room in the Dragon Volant by J. Sheridan LeFanu

Anthony Trollope There was then living a sister of Mrs. Bertram’s, who had been married some few years to a Mr. Baker, and the infant was received into this family, of which our friend Miss Baker was a child. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

This gentleman was a young man, scarcely sixteen years of age, now white with anger. Twenty Years After by Alexandre Dumas [1845]

Arthur Machen It was four years before Henry Vibart Chesson, D. D., ascended the throne of St. Guthmund at Dorchester; and all through those four years the fountain of evil innuendo rose without ceasing. The Secret Glory by Arthur Machen

Henry Kingsley At this moment, a beautiful little girl, about five years old, got on the bed, and nestled her peachy cheek against her mother’s. Ravenshoe by Henry Kingsley [1861]

James Anthony Froude By the time that he was twenty-five years old he was in a position considerably superior to that in which he was born. Bunyan by James Anthony Froude [1880]

Julian Hawthorne A corpse might lie amongst these rocks and bushes for twenty years without a chance of being discovered; and ghost and witches might scream their eeriest unheard by mortal ear. The Laughing Mill by Julian Hawthorne

She liked a woman to have both spirit and heart, and a friendship with Judith that extended now over a number of years had proved her both dauntless and passionate. Judith Paris by Hugh Walpole [1931]

John Galsworthy But it was many years since he had been to the mountains. The Man of Property by John Galsworthy

Mark Twain To this place I nominate Mr. Howells. I read his VENETIAN DAYS about forty years ago. What is Man? and other essays by Mark Twain

Virginia Woolf Pictures and voices are the same today as they were 2,000 years ago. Three Guineas by Virginia Woolf [1938]

Sinclair Lewis All the newspapers contained enormous biographies of King Maximilian and much sketchier accounts of Terry, who was, according to the three versions, eight, fourteen, and four years of age. Let’s Play King by Sinclair Lewis

She’d been born and grown up in those twenty years while I was away from Lower Binfield. All my memories would have been meaningless to her. Coming up for Air by George Orwell

Charles Dickens No prophet, whatever else he might take in at the pores, ever took in wine from morning to night, for a number of years together. No Thoroughfare by Charles Dickens [1867]

She looked several years older. The Danvers Jewels by Mary Cholmondeley [1886]

During the past twenty-five years the activities of what are called “intellectuals” have been largely mischievous. Collected Essays by George Orwell

As they advanced in years they took to the tools of manual labour nearly as soon as they could lift them. Ralph Rashleigh by James Tucker

Ivan Turgenev Ten years passed like a dream. Fathers and Sons by Ivan Turgenev

My brother and I bought this house in ‘seventy-one, almost immediately after the war; but Mr. Wyllard was the occupant of this floor for some years after we were in possession. Wyllard's Weird by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1885]

Edith Wharton Freshly perfumed and powdered, her eyes bright, her lips set in a nervous smile, she curiously recalled the arrogant child who had snatched her spaniel away from him years ago in that same room. The Valley of Decision by Edith Wharton [1902]

Jules Verne Barbicane, with arms crossed, looked fixedly at the passenger of the Atlanta. He was a man of about forty-two years of age, of large build, but slightly round-shouldered. From the Earth to the Moon by Jules Verne [1867]

She appeared about 50 years old; her face, full and high-coloured, expressed repose and gravity, softened by the sweetness of her blue eyes and charming smile. The Daughter of the Commandant by Aleksandr Pushkin

Washington Irving Though Goldsmith was now nearly thirty years of age, he had produced nothing to give him a decided reputation. The Life of Oliver Goldsmith by Washington Irving [1840]

H. G. Wells All sorts of idealistic movements for world peace which have been talking quietly to themselves for years and years have been stirred up to follow the new banner. The New World Order by H. G. Wells

But the greater part of his four years in England was spent in Liverpool, where his consular duties suppressed fiction-making. A Study of Hawthorne by G. P. Lathrop [1876]

Thomas Paine It is then necessary to know, as a datum of calculation, the average of years which persons above that age will live. Agrarian Justice by Thomas Paine

He remained six years in Italy, France, and Germany, storing his mind with fantastic notions, and seeking the society of enthusiasts and visionaries. Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay [1852]

But still we must know to what stage of life in a man, had corresponded seventeen thousand years in a Mammoth. Now exactly this was what Kant desired to know about our planet. The System of the Heavens as Revealed by Lord Rosse’s Telescope by Thomas De Quincey [1846]

There had been years when nothing that affected Bellair could have left him indifferent, and a time when the slightest misadventure befalling Fanny would have called forth his eager, helpful sympathy. Studies in Love and Terror by Marie Belloc Lowndes [1913]

In the Palazzo Gosleth he spent the last eight years of his life, and wrote most of his later works. The Life of Sir Richard Burton by Thomas Wrigh

William Hazlitt It would have taken him years to have come to a direct explanation on the point. Characters of Shakespeare’s Plays by William Hazlitt [1817]

Anthony Trollope He was a heavy man, over seventy years of age, much afflicted with gout, and given to no pursuit on earth which was available for his comfort. The Belton Estate by Anthony Trollope

Precisely the same description applies to the subtle and brilliant Adolphe of Benjamin Constant, produced in the early years of the nineteenth century. Landmarks in Literature--French by Lytton Strachey

This was three years ago, and I think Miss Stapleton would have been willing to have broken with Howard and married Franklin if the latter had had the courage to meet his brother’s reproaches. That Affair Next Door by Anna Katharine Green

His mother or his father, did you know them?” “Yes, both; his father is only ten years dead, and their place is near Dawlbridge. We knew them very well,” she answered. Green Tea by J. Sheridan Le Fanu

H. G. Wells Twenty-two years ago, in my War in the Air, I had imagined such wide fields of air fleet, but never then in my boldest cerebrations did I think I should live to see them. An Experiment in Autobiography by H. G. Wells

Andrew Lang The years passed away, and Samba had become a tall and strong youth. The Olive Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Anthony Trollope He is said to have written a poem called Pontius Glaucus when he was fourteen years old. The Life of Cicero by Anthony Trollope [1881]

Edith Wharton The secretary’s father, it appeared, had known the Newells some twenty years earlier. The Hermit and the Wild Woman and other stories by Edith Wharton [1908]

Edith Wharton During those seven years he had managed to squander the best part of the fortune he had inherited from his step-brother; so that, at his death, his widow and son were left with a scant competence. Sanctuary by Edith Wharton [1903]

It was afterward learned that his clerk, twenty-five years dead, had all the time been personated by a twin brother, who was an idiot from birth and knew no law. The Land Beyond the Blow by Ambrose Bierce

Thomas Hardy O, he should never hear any more of that! too many years had passed since it happened. Desperate Remedies by Thomas Hardy [1871]

Anthony Trollope At this time he was not more than twenty- four years old; and though he has now been three years in Barchester, we have not heard that he has done much harm to the nine worthy practitioners. The Warden by Anthony Trollope

Charles Dickens His mother survived him, a prisoner, for five years; after her ransom by the King of France, she survived for six years more. A Child’s History of England by Charles Dickens [1852]

William Makepeace Thackeray Beyond these there were no incidents or characters of note, except an old ostler that they said was 90 years old, and watered the horse at a lone inn on the road. The Irish Sketch Book by William Makepeace Thackeray [1843]

Marjorie Bowen Remorse? Why, I tell you we’ve given the old girl the good time she ought to have had years ago. Raw Material by Marjorie Bowen

W. W. Jacobs He is a very passionate, hasty man, and five years ago he struck a man down and thought he had killed him. The Skipper’s Wooing by W. W. Jacobs [1897]

Besides, for ten years I have been falling in love with this country, and now I am up to the neck. The Grove of Ashtaroth by John Buchan [1910]

Ann Radcliffe To obtain them by stratagem seemed impossible, and Ferdinand feared to tamper with the honesty of this man, who had been many years in the service of the marquis. A Sicilian Romance by Ann Radcliffe [1790]

H.P. Lovecraft Here lay the arcana, wondrous or dreadful as the case may be, for which all his years of travel and application had been preparing him. The Case of Charles Dexter Ward by H.P. Lovecraft [1927]

Arthur Morrison Twelve years as Mrs. Ford had left her still childless, and childless she remained as Mrs. Simmons. As for Simmons, he, it was held, was fortunate in that capable wife. Tales of Mean Streets by Arthur Morrison

Anthony Trollope Ain’t I doing it all for you? Ain’t I been sweating my life out these thirty years to make you a lady?” This was hard upon Polly, as she was not yet one-and-twenty. Ralph the Heir by Anthony Trollope [1871]

Charles Dickens He was only twenty-five years old, he said, and had grown recently, for it had been found necessary to make an addition to the legs of his inexpressibles. American Notes for General Circulation by Charles Dickens [1842]

Thomas Hardy The thought that he was several years her junior produced a reasonless sigh. Life’s Little Ironies by Thomas Hardy

Tobias Smolle They are indeed so exquisite that you may return to them every day with a fresh appetite for seven years together. Travels through France and Italy by Tobias Smolle

For the circle which came together in her drawing-room during those years had the hand of death upon it. Books and Characters by Lytton Strachey

Jack London The years of prosperity were now to be paid for. The Iron Heel by Jack London [1908]

He was involved in continual difficulty, as well with the heads of the college as with the police of Rome, and acquired so bad a character that years could not remove it. Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay [1852]

Walter Scott He hath his gay cloak indeed — but Piercie Shafton is a round dozen of years older than that slip of roguery. The Monastery by Walter Scott [1820]

Anthony Trollope Three years ago it had been his fixed resolve to earn for himself the right to sit upon that dais. John Caldigate by Anthony Trollope

Sigmund Freud But a kiss had passed between Herr K. and Dora some two years further back, and it would certainly have been repeated more than once if she had given way to him. Fragment of an Analysis of a Case of Hysteria by Sigmund Freud [1905]

William Morris Forty years ago there was much less talk about art, much less practice of it, than there is now; and that is specially true of the architectural arts, which I shall mostly have to speak about now. Signs of Change by William Morris [1888]

I know you didn’t much like him, though he’s often spoken to me very gratefully of the good turn you did him years ago. From Out the Vasty Deep by Marie Belloc Lowndes [1920]

George Gissing He began to see how much better, how much easier, it would have been to tell the truth two years ago. Will Warburton by George Gissing [1903]

Arthur Conan Doyle Some years after Tom heard from a commercial traveller of a melancholy, broken man who haunted the low betting-houses of San Francisco, and who met his death eventually in some drunken fracas. The Firm of Girdlestone by Arthur Conan Doyle [1890]

He had only been confined to his bed for three days and had been attended by the kindly old doctor from the village, who had brought him into the world eight and twenty years before. The Grave-digger of Monks Arden by Arthur Gask [1938]

Andrew Lang Now the boy, who was about twelve years old, ought to have considered himself very lucky, for his new mother was as kind to him as the old one. The Olive Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

F. Scott Fitzgerald I began to think what color I turned when I made my last exposure about two years ago. The Beautiful and Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald [1922]

In any case, this result had been attained some years before the publication of the first volume of the Decline and Fall, in 1776. Gibbon by James Cotter Morison [1878]

Anthony Trollope For years past he had sat intending to work, purposing to achieve a great task which he set for himself, and had done—almost nothing. Ralph the Heir by Anthony Trollope [1871]

It had happened a great many years ago, but was still vividly remembered, as of special and natural interest, among the class to which he had belonged. The Lodger by Marie Belloc Lowndes [1913]

Guy de Maupassan Once, like everyone else, she had some notion of the passing years and of the changes they bring. Strong as Death by Guy de Maupassan

John Lewis Burckhard The industry of a very few years might thus render Mekka and its environs as remarkable for gardens and plantations, as it now is for absolute sterility. Travels in Arabia by John Lewis Burckhard

Walter Besant For my own part, I know of no other man of all those who have lived in this eighteenth century, whose face is so well remembered even twenty years and more after his death. Dorothy Forster by Walter Besant [1884]

The duke commemorated this remarkable event by a jubilee, and by a medal in honor of Goethe. Full of years and honor, this eminent man might now begin to think of his departure. Goethe by Thomas De Quincey

William Makepeace Thackeray The angelic architecture, is of rather a rude kind; and the village antiquary, who takes a pride in showing the place, says that the building was erected 2,000 years ago. The Irish Sketch Book by William Makepeace Thackeray [1843]

H. G. Wells Long years were to pass before any movement whatever in the direction of the Modern State System was quite free from this heritage of cant. The Shape of Things to Come by H. G. Wells [1933]

F. Scott Fitzgerald Two years before he had commenced a history of the United States which, though it only got as far as the Colonial Wars, had been pronounced by his mother completely enchanting. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Think of your Indian life, and the years you have wasted,—you who are so clever and accomplished, and who ought to have been so fortunate. Eleanor's Victory by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1863]

Julian Hawthorne It’s a great, immense rock, where robbers lived hundreds of years ago. Mrs. Gainsborough’s Diamonds by Julian Hawthorne

H. G. Wells It all lay in the surface of practical anatomy years ago, but no one had the temerity to touch it. The Island of Doctor Moreau by H. G. Wells [1896]

She had once been shaken by all these emotions herself, years ago, when she was in love. Red Pottage by Mary Cholmondeley [1899]

Two years and four months afterwards, Theodora relented and released him, and he appeared in the world like one raised from the dead; but ever afterwards he was short-sighted and diseased in body. The Secret History of the Court of Justinian by Procopius [1896]

Oscar Wilde As long as a woman can look ten years younger than her own daughter, she is perfectly satisfied. The Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar Wilde [1891]

Anthony Trollope As President I had still two years to run, but it occurred to me now that I could not possibly endure those two years of prolonged nominal power. The Fixed Period by Anthony Trollope

Wilkie Collins A light, active, high-spirited man — about five-and-forty years old, to look at. The Woman in White by Wilkie Collins [1860]

This may be right enough in itself; but I think, then, that all property should be defended by civil suit, and should become public after forty-two years of private tenure. Literature and Life by William Dean Howells

It was a point of view that he hardly expected any fellow Westerner to share, but he was more faithful to it as he grew older in years and experience. Lost Horizon by James Hilton

Wilkie Collins You live five-and-twenty years with your mistress — and then suddenly leave her — and you expect me to pass over this extraordinary proceeding without inquiry. I Say No by Wilkie Collins [1884]

Arnold Bennett She was nearly twenty-nine years of age. The Old Wives’ Tale by Arnold Bennett [1908]

George Gissing It was five years and more since her one meeting with him at Ewell, but the man, on that occasion, had impressed her strongly in a very disagreeable way. The Crown of Life by George Gissing [1899]

Mark Twain I know, for I saw it tried in a public school in Nevada forty-five years ago, and was so impressed by the incident that it has remained in my memory ever since. What is Man? and other essays by Mark Twain

Andrew Lang And so the days slipped away, and she was fourteen years old. The Crimson Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

Woodilee was better off than many places, in that it possessed a mortification of a thousand pounds Scots, bequeathed fifty years earlier by a certain Grizel Hawkshaw for the comfort of the poor. Witch Wood by John Buchan [1927]

She was two years past the retiring age, but in fact no animal had ever actually retired. Animal Farm by George Orwell [1944]

Leon Trotsky He was nine years old, but he realized definitely — and had for a long time — that revolution meant an amnesty, a return to Russia and a thousand other blessings. My Life by Leon Trotsky

Ford Madox Ford After forty-five years of mixing with one’s kind, one ought to have acquired the habit of being able to know something about one’s fellow beings. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford

George Gissing The bookseller was alone in his old age; a sister who had kept his house for many years was dead, and he had no near relatives to take her place. Isabel Clarendon by George Gissing [1886]

George Gissing It was not an artistic impulse only that had brought Mallard to Italy, after three years of work under northern skies. The Emancipated by George Gissing [1889]

F. Scott Fitzgerald What I’d see of it, lost in a clerkship, for the next and best ten years of my life would have the intellectual content of an industrial movie. This Side of Paradise by F. Scott Fitzgerald

Andrew Lang Several years after, Mr. Rokeby was smoking, alone, in the dining-room early in the evening, when the dog began to bristle up his hair, and bark. The Book of Dreams and Ghosts by Andrew Lang

Ten years ago, even five years ago, the typical literary gent wrote books on baroque architecture and had a soul above politics. The Road to Wigan Pier by George Orwell [1937]

I’ve adjudicated these things for years to voices not in the same class as yours. Stingaree by E. W. Hornung [1905]

Benjamin Disraeli The appointment was at once made, and the Count of Ferroll had now been two years at the Court of St. James’. Endymion by Benjamin Disraeli [1880]

Robert Green Ingersoll The farmers of our country live better than did the kings and princes two hundred years ago — and they have twice as much sense and heart. The Ghosts and other lectures by Robert Green Ingersoll

There was something in Carlisle, all those years ago . Rogue Herries by Hugh Walpole [1930]

Jules Verne The unfortunate Frenchman was but twenty-six years of age. Five Weeks in a Balloon by Jules Verne [1869]

Rudyard Kipling The station, which had its beginnings thirty odd years ago, used, till comparatively recent times, to control its own roads, sewage, conservancy, and the like. Among the Railway Folk by Rudyard Kipling [1891]

E. F. Benson She felt all she had felt twelve years ago. The House of Defence by E. F. Benson [1906]

Jules Verne They were both about forty years old, and one of them well deserved to take first rank amongst celebrated female travellers. The Fur Country by Jules Verne [1873]

The young girl is lovely and her tears only embellish her; the lady appears to be about forty years of age, the girl about fourteen. Twenty Years After by Alexandre Dumas [1845]

Maria Edgeworth Sir Herbert was some years older than Ormond; he was in his twenty-seventh year: but at this age he had done more good in life than many men accomplish during their whole existence. Ormond by Maria Edgeworth

G. K. Chesterton The years since his wife’s death, that had been covered by the writing of The Ring and the Book, had been years of an almost feverish activity in that and many other ways. Robert Browning by G. K. Chesterton [1903]

The terrible Torquemada dwelt for years in Valladolid and must there have excogitated some of the methods of the Holy Office in dealing with heresy. Familiar Spanish Travels by William Dean Howells

Arthur Morrison Papers with a sort of private log in them — not much like the one they showed ’em at Lloyd’s — of the loss of the Florence years enough ago, when a man named Dan Webb was killed. The Hole in the Wall by Arthur Morrison

Those years had left no mark on the porcelain godling but they had wrought their inevitable changes in the man. Citadel of Fear by Francis Stevens

M. P. Shiel Those words: ‘when the thirty-three’ were written by me over seventeen years since—long years—seventeen in number, nor have I now any idea to what they refer. The Purple Cloud by M. P. Shiel [1901]

Walter Scott Give me my bonnet, or I go without it; surely I am not to be delayed by so trifling a want as that — I, who have gone for years with only a strap of deer’s hide to tie back my hair. Chronicles of the Canongate by Walter Scott [1827]

Virginia Woolf Photographs from old Italian masterpieces hung on the walls, and views of Venetian bridges and Swedish waterfalls which members of the family had seen years ago. The Voyage Out by Virginia Woolf [1915]

Henry Kingsley Now in holiday clothes and in holiday mind, the two noble animals cross the paddock, and so down by the fence towards the river; towards the old gravel ford you may remember years ago. The Recollections of Geoffrey Hamlyn by Henry Kingsley [1859]

Virginia Woolf A violent tumult of emotion besieged her at meeting the man who had caused her, years ago, so much pain. Orlando by Virginia Woolf [1928]

Theodore Dreiser Now that the years were slipping away and the problem of the world was becoming more and more inexplicable, he clung with pathetic anxiety to the doctrines which contained a solution. Jennie Gerhardt by Theodore Dreiser

Sigmund Freud The brother said that he remembered the affair very distinctly, for he was six years old at the time. The Interpretation of Dreams by Sigmund Freud [1911]

I have observed much peculiarity about him myself, and have little doubt that the seeds of the insanity that took possession of him at the last were sown years and years ago. Her Father’s Name by Florence Marryat [1878]

Three years elapsed after arriving in England before the ague took its final leave of him. Wanderings in South America by Charles Waterton [1825]

Anthony Trollope Some years subsequently there arose another similar question, in which Mr. Reade’s opinion was declared even more plainly, and certainly very much more publicly. An Autobiography by Anthony Trollope [1883]

Edith Wharton Gardening, reading and travel seemed the only solace left; and during the first years after the war I did a good deal of all three. A Backward Glance by Edith Wharton [1934]

As it was, she lived for more than eighty years (till all but the middle of the nineteenth century) and wrote for more than sixty. The English Novel by George Saintsbury [1913]

George Gissing My son is a stranger; all these years have made him quite a different man from what I remember; and the worst is, I can no longer trust myself to judge him. The Nether World by George Gissing [1888]

Thomas Wolfe It took Goethe, the strongest soul of modern times, some three and eighty years to free his mighty spirit of this last infirmity. You Can’t Go Home Again by Thomas Wolfe [1940]

Ann Radcliffe The chevalier was the second son of a French gentleman of large estates in France, who had been some years deceased. A Sicilian Romance by Ann Radcliffe [1790]

Edith Wharton It was not furrowed like his; but a veil of years seemed to have descended on it. Crucial Instances by Edith Wharton [1901]

For some twenty years at most (1798—1818), Wordsworth possessed this gift of melody. Wordsworth by F. W. H. Myers [1881]

I was there nearly fifty years ago, when the Heronvilles owned it; and now the Heronvilles are all dead or ruined, and this city person is master of the fine old mansion. Phantom Fortune by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

Edith Wharton Love had narrowed instead of widening her, had rebuilt between herself and life the very walls which, years and years before, she had laid low with bleeding fingers. Sanctuary by Edith Wharton [1903]

Good Heavens! had any one told me, twenty-five years ago, that I should eventually become a Darling Whaler, I’d have knocked, what I should have thought then to be the lie, down their throats. The Childerbridge Mystery by Guy Boothby [1902]

Jack London Tells all the ole tricks I’ve bin ’earin’ for twenty years an’ w’ich I never seen a mug ever do. The People of the Abyss by Jack London [1903]

F. Scott Fitzgerald You will be known during your fifteen years as a ragtime kid, a flapper, a jazz-baby, and a baby vamp. The Beautiful and Damned by F. Scott Fitzgerald [1922]

Ford Madox Ford But I am convinced that he was sick of Florence within three years of even interrupted companionship and the life that she led him. The Good Soldier by Ford Madox Ford

Anthony Trollope But years would teach him much in this respect, and she also might perhaps teach him something. The Bertrams by Anthony Trollope [1859]

Meanwhile the priest, in the monotonous, gentle voice which he had acquired by years of duty in the confessional, continued whispering in her ear. A Love Episode by Émile Zola [1878]

Jack London And through the years the tale of my madness never ceased from being told over the camp-fire. The Star Rover by Jack London [1915]

A. E. W. Mason She became just what she was five years ago. The Four Feathers by A. E. W. Mason [1902]

When I was fifteen years of age, Andrinetta died. Run to Earth by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1868]

Then came old Major Button who had spent many years of service in India, and in his time been a noted slayer of man-eating tigers. The Silent Dead by Arthur Gask [1950]

Wilkie Collins I hardly know how it happened, but I stole into Magdalen’s room, just as I used to steal into it years and years ago, when we were children. No Name by Wilkie Collins [1862]

Oo, years ago — long before we come ‘ere. Coming up for Air by George Orwell

It would have been easy enough two years before — I mean, to bank the money. A Shilling for Candles by Josephine Tey [1936]

William Makepeace Thackeray More than twenty years ago, in an island remarkable for its verdure, I met four or five times one of the most agreeable companions with whom I have passed a night. Roundabout Papers by William Makepeace Thackeray [1860-63]

Edward Jenner In April, 1795, a general inoculation taking place here, Merret was inoculated with his family; so that a period of twenty-five years had elapsed from his having the cow-pox to this time. On Vaccination Against Smallpox by Edward Jenner

Anthony Trollope Two years ago he had known that he was the heir to it all, though even then that habit was so strong upon him he had felt that his tenure of it would be but slight. Mr. Scarborough's Family by Anthony Trollope [1883]

F. Scott Fitzgerald There were twenty years of almost uninterrupted toil upon his shoulders, and the recent pressure at home had been too much for him to bear. All the Sad Young Men by F. Scott Fitzgerald [1926]

George Gissing Let time and change do their work for six years and six months, their building and their destroying, their ripening for love, their ripening for death. A Life's Morning by George Gissing [1885]

Henry James Then he added, with a deeper tenderness, “Catherine, have you never forgiven me?” “I forgave you years ago, but it is useless for us to attempt to be friends. Washington Square by Henry James [1880]

This work, only sixty-five years old, now stands so perilously near the undermined edge of the rock-cornice, that some day it will come down with a run. The Land of Midian by Richard F. Burton [1879]

Thomas Hardy Think of years to come, and children being born to us, and this past matter getting known — for it must get known. Tess of the d’Urbervilles by Thomas Hardy

My girl will be eight and my boy six years of age. Miss Lonelyhearts by Nathanael West [1933]

Sinclair Lewis Goings-on!” Now, for the many weary years of his life, Ginger had singularly failed to impress his uncle. Selected Short Stories by Sinclair Lewis

Anthony Trollope The idea of telling me that I was to go to church as though I were twelve years old!” “What would she say if she knew that you were walking here with me?” “I don’t care what she’d say. The American Senator by Anthony Trollope

Henry James Fidelia Dosson, whose name had been shortened, was twenty-five years old and had a large white face, in which the eyes were far apart. The Reverberator by Henry James [1888]

Olaf Stapledon Much, of course, we have still in common with them; but the years prise us ever apart. Death into Life by Olaf Stapledon

George Gissing When, years ago, he saw Irene in the dress of ceremony, she seemed to him peerlessly radiant; but it was the beauty and the dignity of one still girlish. The Crown of Life by George Gissing [1899]

G. K. Chesterton Ten years ago you could see Hugby’s Ales written beside every sign in the county. The Flying Inn by G. K. Chesterton [1914]

Idiots! are new-born children thirteen years old? And that boy is not a day younger. The Cloister and the Hearth by Charles Reade

Andrew Lang He had been married in Mr. Langhorne’s rooms, in the Temple, by Le Fevre, a priest, in 1667, or, at least, about eleven years before 1678. The Valet’s Tragedy by Andrew Lang

Bram Stoker Were it not that through long years I have trained myself to keep an open mind, I could not have believed until such time as that fact thunder on my ear. Dracula by Bram Stoker [1897]

R. D. Blackmore For years he had sternly resisted all temptation of second marriage, toward which shrewd mothers and nice maidens had labored in vain to lead him. Mary Anerley by R. D. Blackmore [1880]

Jane Austen Thirteen years had seen her mistress of Kellynch Hall, presiding and directing with a self-possession and decision which could never have given the idea of her being younger than she was. Persuasion by Jane Austen [1818]

The brother went to jail, got out years afterwards on ticket-of-leave, and then died also. The Secret Passage by Fergus Hume

John Galsworthy That bridge was hundreds of years old, nearly as old as the oldest parts of the Grange, and still very strong. Maid in Waiting by John Galsworthy

He was a man from fifty to fifty-five years old, but good-looking for his age. The Vicomte de Bragelonne by Alexandre Dumas [1848-1850]

Andrew Lang And every day the boy grew bigger and stronger till he was twelve years old, when the king died, and he was left alone to take care of his mother. The Crimson Fairy Book by Andrew Lang

And now they talk of putting me in a lavatory—me that has been with the company for five and forty years and on the foot-plate thirty-two—a man suspected of running past a danger signal. Max Carrados by Ernest Bramah [1914]

James Joyce He was thirty-four or thirty-five years of age, so that youth could not be pleaded as his excuse; nor could ignorance be his excuse since he was a man who had seen something of the world. Dubliners by James Joyce

Henry James What was at all events not permanently hidden from him was a truth much less invidious about his years of darkness. The Golden Bowl by Henry James [1904]

Henry James Ancona was dull, Mrs. Light was lively, and — three-and-twenty years ago — perhaps, the Cavaliere was fascinating. Roderick Hudson by Henry James [1875]

Abraham Merri Jubilant now! Triumphant! Something was inside the block! Something that had lain hidden there since Sargon of Akkad, six thousand years go! The carillons of jade rang out again. The Ship of Ishtar by Abraham Merri

Guy de Maupassant I am thirty, and I have had seven children, and we have been married eleven years, and you hope that this will go on for ten years longer, after which you will leave off being jealous. Useless Beauty (L’Inutile Beauté) by Guy de Maupassant [1890]

Algernon Blackwood A few thousand years ago these people lived in mud huts, before that in caves, before that again in trees. The Bright Messenger by Algernon Blackwood [1922]

All along the thousand miles of railway, there was no other sanctuary, no half-way house, as it were, between the white man’s traffic and the native intelligence, five thousand years behind. The Passing of the Aborigines by Daisy Bates [1938]

And that an old man THERE remembered to have seen him sixty years before, in Sweden.” “Tush,” returned Cetoxa, “the same thing has been said of the quack Cagliostro — mere fables. Zanoni by Edward Bulwer-Lytton [1842]

George Gissing It seems to me that a couple of years or so is not an over-long time for this, all things considered. The Emancipated by George Gissing [1889]

H. G. Wells For years even quite bold and advanced thinkers were chased by events. The Shape of Things to Come by H. G. Wells [1933]

Fifteen years later Ronald’s elder brother died unmarried. Phantom Fortune by Mary Elizabeth Braddon [1883]

George Gissing She was persuaded that what she had done was wholly prudent, that in years to come she would look back on this chapter of her life with satisfaction. Thyrza by George Gissing [1887]

Miles Franklin He was seventy-two years of age—twenty-one years older than Pa. I thought I was having a nightmare. My Career Goes Bung by Miles Franklin [1946]

Sinclair Lewis If we keep after the city council for another ten years they MAY vote the bonds for a new school. Main Street by Sinclair Lewis

George Borrow I almost wish that I had lived some two or three hundred years ago, that I might have observed these people when they were yet stranger than at present. The Romany Rye by George Borrow

How the son of a poor Suffolk minister contrived to live in London throughout the years 1590 and 1591, it is difficult to imagine. An Essay on the Life and Writings of Thomas Nash by Edmund Gosse

Could all this be true? Elizabeth was told of it, and she remembered that, some three years previously, the Doctor had offered her a diamond and ruby ring, which she had refused to accept. Elizabeth and Essex by Lytton Strachey [1928]

Frances Hodgson Burnett One knew what far-sighted perception and clarity of experienced vision this one woman had gained during her many years of life. The Head of the House of Coombe by Frances Hodgson Burnett [1922]

Guy de Maupassant This missive told her that her husband had had for two years past, a sweetheart, a young widow named Madame Rosset, with whom he spent all his evenings. Forgiveness (Le Pardon) by Guy de Maupassant [1882]

Ralph Waldo Emerson He remained a bachelor all his life and in his last years lived much abroad. Representative Men by Ralph Waldo Emerson [1850]

William Dampier I have heard that about 23 or 24 years since the governor had sold it to the French, but died a small time before the fleet came to demand it, and by his death that design failed. A New Voyage Round the World by William Dampier [1697]