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Cringe   /krɪndʒ/   Listen
Cringe

verb
(past & past part. cringed; pres. part. cringing)
1.
Draw back, as with fear or pain.  Synonyms: flinch, funk, quail, recoil, shrink, squinch, wince.
2.
Show submission or fear.  Synonyms: cower, crawl, creep, fawn, grovel.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Cringe" Quotes from Famous Books



... other man. Oh, foolish fox, you are going straight into the jaws of death! My comrade stands just there beside that tree. I would gladly have given Reynard the wink, or signaled to him, if I could. It did seem a pity to shoot him, now he was out of my reach. I cringe for him, when crack goes the gun! The fox squalls, picks himself up, and plunges over the brink of the mountain. The hunter has not missed his aim, but the oil in his gun, he says, has weakened the strength of his powder. The hound, hearing the report, ...
— The Writings of John Burroughs • John Burroughs

... my head high?" Mr. Vimpany went on. "When calamity strikes at a man, don't let him cringe and cry for pity—let him hit back again! Those are my principles. Look at me. Now do look at me. Here I am, a cultivated person, a member of an honourable profession, a man of art and accomplishment—stripped of every ...
— Blind Love • Wilkie Collins

... man of mark. He has his friends and his foes. To those whom he deems worthy of conciliating, will he fawn and cringe. Those whom he despairs of making his friends, or those whose friendship may do him no good, he alienates ...
— Hubert's Wife - A Story for You • Minnie Mary Lee

... must kill the soul, if there be one, with disgust at its own vileness, and the miserable contrast between its aspirations and attainments, its pretences and its efforts. At least, that would be the death fit for a life like mine—a death of disgust at itself. We claim immortality; we cringe and cower with the fear that immortality may not be the destiny of man; and yet we—I—do things unworthy not merely of immortality, but unworthy of the butterfly existence of a single day in such a world as this sometimes seems to be. Just think how ...
— Wilfrid Cumbermede • George MacDonald

... coward." The woman's cheeks flamed red. "Some men shut their eyes and cringe when there comes a flash of lightning. But that don't make them cowards. He might have been frightened at the time, and not known what he was doing, but he is not a coward. I guess I know that as well as ...
— Anting-Anting Stories - And other Strange Tales of the Filipinos • Sargent Kayme

... the first arrow to the string, and Stern was about to apply the torch, a rattling crash from above caused all to cringe and ...
— Darkness and Dawn • George Allan England

... the collar of his jacket, gave him a hearty shake; "rare fun would it be,—and what do you call this? You dare twit your sister with cowardice!—you who sneaked off yesterday like a fox because you had not the spirit to look an old man in the face!—you who bully the weak and cringe to the strong!—you who have the manners of a bear with the heart of a pigeon!" Every sentence was accompanied by a violent shake, which almost took the breath from the boy; and Jonas, red with passion, concluded his ...
— False Friends, and The Sailor's Resolve • Unknown

... obliged to prostrate his honour, and to submit his principles at the levee of some proud favourite, shouldered and thrust aside by every impudent pretender, on the very spot where a few days before he saw himself adored?—obliged to cringe to the author of the calamities of his house, and to kiss the hands that are red ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... construction. The cock-of-the-roost sits aloft like Jupiter on an unsharable seat, holding your fate between two thongs of inconstant leather. Helpless, ridiculous, confined, bobbing like a toy mandarin, you sit like a rat in a trap—you, before whom butlers cringe on solid land—and must squeak upward through a slit in your peripatetic sarcophagus to ...
— The Four Million • O. Henry

... for he hated a lie, An sickophants doubly despised; He wor ne'er know to cringe to a rich fly-bi-sky, It wor worth an net wealth 'at he prized. Aw shall ne'er meet another soa honest an true, As aw write ther's a tear i' mi ee; Nah he's gooan to his rest, an aw'll give him his due,— He wor allus ...
— Yorkshire Lyrics • John Hartley

... ruffians slay The men who fain would win their own! the heroes of to-day! Are we pledged to craven silence? O, fling it to the wind, The parchment wall that bars us from the least of human kind! That makes us cringe, and temporize, and dumbly stand at rest, While Pity's burning flood of words is red-hot ...
— The Duty of Disobedience to the Fugitive Slave Act - Anti-Slavery Tracts No. 9, An Appeal To The Legislators Of Massachusetts • Lydia Maria Child

... allowing it to grovel around in the very unpleasant circumstances in which some people are liable to find themselves. The outward vision is transient, the inner vision can build eternal realities. "Are we to beg and cringe and hang on the outer edge of life,—we who should walk grandly? Is it for man to tremble and quake—man who in his spiritual capacity becomes the interpreter of God's message,—the focus ...
— Spirit and Music • H. Ernest Hunt

... piece became a flaming torch, and he waved it before him and laughed to see the warriors cringe. A cloud of smoke was billowing about him—he leaped to safety through a ...
— Astounding Stories of Super-Science, June, 1930 • Various

... changed them, they say in a wonderful way, To toys, for his Christmas cheer. The big dolls stare with a goblin air, The small ones cringe with fear. ...
— The Goblins' Christmas • Elizabeth Anderson

... few paces to the head of his column and shouted, "Boys, McClellan is in command again; three cheers!" The cheers were given with wild delight, and were taken up and passed toward the rear of the column. Warm friend of McClellan as I was, I felt my flesh cringe at the unnecessary affront to the unfortunate commander of that army. But no word was spoken. Pope lifted his hat in a parting salute to McClellan and rode quietly on with his escort. [Footnote: General Hatch had been in command of the cavalry of Banks's corps up to the battle of Cedar ...
— Military Reminiscences of the Civil War V1 • Jacob Dolson Cox

... the salient characteristic of his being is unmasked and stands forth, naked. If he be at heart a coward, even though he may honestly never have suspected himself of cowardice, he will try to flee, or cringe and grovel for mercy; if his soul is stayed upon the immortal and everlasting truths, he will face what Fate may hold with the resigned fortitude which was the martyrs'; but, if he is merely a man, strong with the courage of the beast, refined and strengthened in the fires of intellect, ...
— 'Smiles' - A Rose of the Cumberlands • Eliot H. Robinson

... the band Of feeble spirits cringe and plead To the gigantic strength of Greed, And fawn upon his ...
— Shapes of Clay • Ambrose Bierce

... hunting trouble. Totally dissatisfied with any answer I could make, he kept roaring louder and louder. There was no doubt that he was venting his spleen upon an unprotected and humble civilian, and that he was thoroughly enjoying seeing me cringe under his bulldozing. It flashed upon me that he might be a self-appointed guardian of the way. So when he began to wax still more arrogant, I simply said, "Take me to ...
— In the Claws of the German Eagle • Albert Rhys Williams

... receive his niece; but as to this John expressed his supreme indifference. The old man was nothing to him. Of course he would like to have the old man's money; but the old man couldn't live for ever, and he supposed that things would come right in time. But this he knew,—that he wasn't going to cringe to the old man about his money. When Roger observed that it would be better that Ruby should have some home to which she might at once return, John adverted with a renewed grin to all the substantial comforts of his own house. It seemed to be his idea, ...
— The Way We Live Now • Anthony Trollope

... with his stylus. The master sits on a high chair, surveying the scene. He cultivates a grim and awful aspect, for he is under no delusion that "his pupils love him." "He sits aloft," we are told, "like a juryman, with an expression of implacable wrath, before which the pupil must tremble and cringe."[] ...
— A Day In Old Athens • William Stearns Davis

... sees himself surrounded by admirers, and whose vanity is hourly feasted with all the luxuries of studied praise, is easily persuaded that his influence will be extended beyond his life; that they who cringe in his presence will reverence his memory, and that those who are proud to be numbered among his friends, will endeavour to vindicate his choice by zeal ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume IV: The Adventurer; The Idler • Samuel Johnson

... waving. They drift upward nearer the surface, the wide round eyes turning and twisting in their sockets, ever watchful for food and danger. Without warning a terrific splash scatters them, and when the ripples and bubbles cease, five frightened sunfish cringe in terror among the water plants of the bottom mud. Off to her nest goes the kingfisher, bearing to her brood ...
— The Log of the Sun - A Chronicle of Nature's Year • William Beebe

... commenced a part which was to continue through life, I considered deeply on the humours of the spectators. I saw that the character of the English was servile to rank, and yielding to pretension—they admire you for your acquaintance, and cringe to you for your conceit. The first thing, therefore, was to know great people—the second to controul them. I dressed well, and had good horses—that was sufficient to make me sought by the young of my own sex. ...
— Pelham, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... he said, "don't make me see the brand I have put on you. Don't, for Heaven's sake, cringe to me ...
— Ronicky Doone • Max Brand

... represent their idea of charity. They expect any fairly well-to-do person, such as a shopkeeper, to give sufficient food for the whole community for one day, and they sit in his house till they get it. They do not stand at the door and salaam and cringe, like the ordinary mendicant. They boldly enter in uninvited and demand alms. They are much disliked on account of the largeness of their wants. But they are also feared on account of the terrible ...
— India and the Indians • Edward F. Elwin

... like our friend the Spider," answered Mr. Jaggers, "either beats or cringes. He may cringe and growl, or cringe and not growl; but he either beats or cringes. Ask ...
— Great Expectations • Charles Dickens

... heroes seek renown in arms, Pant after fame, and rush to war's alarms; To shining palaces let fools resort, And dunces cringe to be esteem'd at court: Mine be the pleasure of a rural life, From noise remote, and ignorant of strife; Far from the painted belle, and white-glov'd beau, The lawless masquerade and midnight show; From ladies, lap-dogs, courtiers, ...
— The Young Gentleman and Lady's Monitor, and English Teacher's Assistant • John Hamilton Moore

... be a slave, when Freedom smiling stands, To strike the gyves from of his fettered hands? Who'd be a slave, and cringe, and bow the knee, And kiss the hand that steals his liberty? Behold the bird that flits from bough to bough; What though at times the wintry blasts may blow,— Happier it feels, half frozen in its nest, Than caged, though fed and fondled and caressed. ...
— Yorksher Puddin' - A Collection of the Most Popular Dialect Stories from the - Pen of John Hartley • John Hartley

... giant Abyssinian, guardian of the rock, custodian of the Cave of Terrible Things, bone of contention for the jealous and terror of the strongest, filled the entrance with his colossal frame and looked out with a calm dignity that made the whites cringe with hatred. Slowly, with stately grace, the giant advanced until he stood before Dolores, and in his coal-black eyes shone the light of limitless devotion. He knelt, kissed the sequins on her tunic's hem, then, with both hands pressed ...
— The Pirate Woman • Aylward Edward Dingle

... occupied in making brushes, like the prisoners of the Alondiga, and two I saw whiling away the time making lace! Several of them tagged my footsteps, eager for some errand. One feels no great sense of security in a country whose boyish, uneducated, and ragged guardians of order cringe around like beggar boys hoping for ...
— Tramping Through Mexico, Guatemala and Honduras - Being the Random Notes of an Incurable Vagabond • Harry A. Franck

... this token. In my hand At least it shall lie safe, nor be a god: I worship not the bullet.... But beware What mummer's part you play in this strange scene. For by the victory I have won of late, I am your master! And in grovelling dust Before me you shall cringe, though all the world Shun me, your conqueror. Vilest of slaves! Accept ...
— Mr. Faust • Arthur Davison Ficke

... hinge Threw wide her hospitable door, To one whose spirit did not cringe Though he was weak, and knew he bore No ...
— The Mistress of the Manse • J. G. Holland

... than a statue, and generally excites people's laughter." Because they cannot ride a horse, which every clown can do; salute and court a gentlewoman, carve at table, cringe and make conges, which every common swasher can do, [1990]hos populus ridet, &c., they are laughed to scorn, and accounted silly fools by our gallants. Yea, many times, such is their misery, they deserve it: [1991]a mere ...
— The Anatomy of Melancholy • Democritus Junior

... every law of propriety; and thus it happens that seats are slipped out of sight, and exhausted women smile and ask, as the purchase is made, "And what is the next pleasure?" in a tone that makes the American hearer cringe for the abject humility that is the first condition of success ...
— Prisoners of Poverty Abroad • Helen Campbell

... beautifully-written letters addressed to all possible persons, beginning with the Metropolitan and ending with riding-masters and midwives! Then began the visits to acquaintances and strangers! And here is one point which must be noted: in making his calls he did not cringe and did not importune; but, on the contrary, he behaved himself in decorous fashion, and even wore a cheery and pleasant aspect, although an ingrained odour of liquor accompanied him everywhere—and his Oriental costume was ...
— A Reckless Character - And Other Stories • Ivan Turgenev

... heart," said father, in precisely the same voice he always said, "This is a fine day we are having." "Now why are you coming here in such a shape?" This was a little cross. "I'm not the man to cringe before you!" This was quite boastful. "You'll get bullet for bullet, if you attempt to invade my house with a gun." This pinged as if father ...
— Laddie • Gene Stratton Porter

... streets in company with another, he was not idle; for if his companion bowed to a white person, he would rebuke him, and observe that all men were born equal, and that he was surprised that any one would degrade himself by such conduct,—that he would never cringe to the whites, nor ought any one who had the feelings of a man. When answered, 'We are slaves,' he would sarcastically and indignantly reply, 'You deserve to remain slaves'; and if he were further asked, 'What can we do?' he would remark, 'Go and buy a spelling-book and read the fable of Hercules ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 7, No. 44, June, 1861 • Various

... Baruffo's: "If a man stand up to me I leave him some coins in his pocket, some life in his body; but if he crouch and cringe I stick him in the ...
— The Waters of Edera • Louise de la Rame, a.k.a. Ouida

... demanded implicit obedience to his lightest whim with the unconscious tyranny of one who had always been accustomed to command. He ruled his unruly followers despotically, and it was obvious that while they loved him they feared him equally. She had even seen Yusef, his lieutenant, cringe from the heavy scowl that she had, ...
— The Sheik - A Novel • E. M. Hull

... of 'charity' is by hypocritically pretending to be religious: and the greater the hypocrite, the greater the quantity of coal and groceries. These 'charitable' people went into the wretched homes of the poor and—in effect—said: 'Abandon every particle of self-respect: cringe and fawn: come to church: bow down and grovel to us, and in return we'll give you a ticket that you can take to a certain shop and exchange for a shillingsworth of groceries. And, if you're very servile and humble we may give you another one ...
— The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists • Robert Tressell

... catapult,—rules a church with iron rods, organizes, denounces, intrigues, executes, keeps an unarmed soldiery to do his behests, and hurls ecclesiastic thunders at kings and emperors with the grand audacity of a commission presumedly divine, while Greeks cringe, and Jews blaspheme, and heathen flee into, or away from, conversion; and the Church itself canonizes this spiritual father, this Sphinx-son of ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 32, June, 1860 • Various

... embark on his career of international madness and prosecute it with the rage of a demon is not entirely clear. A vision of himself as the Napoleon of southern South America, who might cause Brazil, Argentina, and Uruguay to cringe before his footstool, while he disposed at will of their territory and fortunes, doubtless stirred his imagination. So, too, the thought of his country, wedged in between two huge neighbors and threatened with suffocation between their overlapping folds, may well have suggested the wisdom ...
— The Hispanic Nations of the New World - Volume 50 in The Chronicles Of America Series • William R. Shepherd

... members of the pure-blooded proletariat; they are ever ready in recognition of each other, and their suspicion of all above them, whether by rank or by nature, is a sense of the utmost keenness. Mrs. Butterfield varied somewhat from the type, inasmuch as she did not care to cringe before her superiors; but that was an accident; in essentials of feeling she and ...
— Thyrza • George Gissing

... the wind that unceasing roars, While cringe the trees from its wrath in vain, And the lightning-flash, And the thunder-crash, And skies, from whose Erebus depths outpours In slanting ...
— Fleurs de lys and other poems • Arthur Weir

... gloom of the canyon's womb; in the valley's lap we lie; From the white foam-fringe, where the breakers cringe to the peaks that tusk the sky, We climb, and we peer in the crag-locked mere that gleams like ...
— The Spell of the Yukon • Robert Service

... sober, ready to promise everything and do nothing, vindictive and highly suspicious of a stranger's intentions. Their bearing towards the Christian, whom they call the infidel, is full of contempt. They know no gratitude, and they would not cringe to the greatest Christian potentate. They are very long-suffering in adversity, hesitating in attack, and the bravest of the brave in defence. They disdain work as degrading and only a fit occupation for slaves, whilst warfare is, to their ...
— The Philippine Islands • John Foreman

... merchant I am corresponding clerk, and am only able to come and see you now by offering to undertake a special business mission for my employer at Paris. It is drudgery, at my time of life, after all I have gone through—but my hard work is innocent work. I am not obliged to cringe for every crown-piece I put in my pocket—not bound to denounce, deceive, and dog to death other men, before I can earn my bread, and scrape together money enough to bury me. I am ending a bad, base life harmlessly at last. It is a poor thing ...
— After Dark • Wilkie Collins

... world from the eyes of the immigrant who has lost all his illusions of the land where dollars grow on the street and where everyone has an equal chance to be president, and if you do not cringe in abject humility, you are not unlikely to be insufferably self-asserting, considering that the world has robbed you and that now it is your turn to get all that is coming to you. So you make loud demands in a rude, ordering voice. The nurse is there to wait ...
— Applied Psychology for Nurses • Mary F. Porter

... servant who meets only censure and coldness, despite her attempts to fulfil her duty, all come under the same law. If they consent to drift away into the limbo of failures, they have only to resign themselves, and their existence will soon end in futility and disaster; but, if they refuse to cringe under the lash of circumstances, if they toil on as though a bright goal were immediately before them, the result is almost assured; and, even if they do succumb, they have the blessed knowledge that they have failed gallantly. Half the misfortunes which crush the children of men into insignificance ...
— Side Lights • James Runciman

... have been beggared by you, and scores of other families too. The whole of Kadampur and Simulgachi are clamouring for your blood, and Allah has appointed me to be the minister of his vengeance. Time was when I had to cringe to you, just as you are doing to me, but never did I receive mercy from you. Now the tables are turned. I might kill you, and who would dare to inform the police folk?" (Here Karim made a vicious prod with his talwar, which passed within half an inch ...
— Tales of Bengal • S. B. Banerjea

... smile and chatter... they bow and cringe to me... and I have not preached any of your Christian ...
— Prince Hagen • Upton Sinclair

... the mob cringe before Coriolanus. When he appears, the stage directions show that the "citizens steal away." (Act ...
— Tolstoy on Shakespeare - A Critical Essay on Shakespeare • Leo Tolstoy

... of Pele, and ye men of Owhyhee! Hearken! ye who cringe and tremble, at the sound of Kilauea, Fearful of the wrath of Pele, fearful of the lake of fire!— Priest, I say there is no Pele! Pele is not—never was! Pele lives but in your legends—there is only one ...
— Bees in Amber - A Little Book Of Thoughtful Verse • John Oxenham

... visit to his father, and he it was who ordered our seizure. I have always been on good terms with him, and must try and induce him not to detain us. It will not do, however, to approach him on horseback. We must show him some respect, though we need not bow and cringe as that ...
— Hendricks the Hunter - The Border Farm, a Tale of Zululand • W.H.G. Kingston

... wills to please, Must humbly crawl upon his knees, And kiss the hand that beats him; Or, if he dare attempt to walk, Must toe the mark that others chalk, And cringe to all ...
— The Olden Time Series, Vol. 6: Literary Curiosities - Gleanings Chiefly from Old Newspapers of Boston and Salem, Massachusetts • Henry M. Brooks

... tribe, a despicable race, Like wand'ring Arabs shift from place to place. Vagrants by law, to Justice open laid, They tremble, of the beadle's lash afraid, And fawning cringe, for wretched means of life, To Madam May'ress, ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 1 • Boswell, Edited by Birkbeck Hill

... had been extended, as it seemed, to his left ear by a savage sword slash which had healed very badly. He had an air of mean, perky intelligence, as of one of low rank and no breeding who had for many years been accustomed to cringe to the great and domineer over smaller fry than himself. Some sort of military rank he had, judging by his stained and frayed but once gaudy jacket. He carried a tuck of unusual length, stretching along his left side from heel to armpit, and a couple ...
— The Yeoman Adventurer • George W. Gough

... hand To keep him in control; He feels the power grow hour by hour Of his expanding soul: In God's stupendous scheme of worlds He knows he has a place; He is no slave to cringe, and ...
— Poems of Sentiment • Ella Wheeler Wilcox

... "Cringe—why, he doesn't know the meaning of the word. Hatchments! To commemorate that sniveling tramp and his, fraternal duplicate. And he is going to send me the remains. The late Claimant was a fool, but plainly this new one's a maniac. What a name! Mulberry ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... They believe that the Lord has yet many things to say unto them, and they are willing and glad for Him to say them by whom He will, but especially by their leaders and their brethren. While they do not fawn and cringe before men, nor believe everything that is said to them, without proving it by the word and Spirit of God, they believe that God "gave some, apostles; and some, prophets; and some, evangelists; ...
— When the Holy Ghost is Come • Col. S. L. Brengle

... is Her brother—and I submit To paying out quarters and sundry dimes; This is Her brother—whose urchin wit Moves me to wrath a thousand times; This is Her brother—and hence I smile And jest and cringe at his tyranny, And call him "smart"! But just wait a while Till he's my brother—and then ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume X (of X) • Various

... and that, but for their adulation and their doctrine of passive obedience, he would never have ventured to be guilty of such tyranny. Their chief business, during a quarter of a century, had been to teach the people to cringe and the prince to domineer. They were guilty of the blood of Russell, of Sidney, of every brave and honest Englishman who had been put to death for attempting to save the realm from Popery and despotism. Never had they breathed a whisper against ...
— The History of England from the Accession of James II. - Volume 3 (of 5) • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... of Anathoth, and the murder in your hearts. Ye that have worshipped the shameful thing and burned incense to Baal—shall I cringe that ye devise against me, or not rather pray to the Lord of Hosts, 'Let me see Thy vengeance on them'? And He answereth, 'I will bring evil upon the men of Anathoth, even the year of ...
— At a Winter's Fire • Bernard Edward J. Capes

... again? No, she owed him a letter, and if she loved him, would doubtless answer it as soon as circumstances would permit; and he 'would let that haughty old aristocrat, her father, see that Philip Hayforth, the merchant, had more of the spirit of a man in him than to cringe to the proudest blood in England. And as for Emily, she was his betrothed bride—the same as his wife; and if he was not more to her than any father on earth, she was unworthy of the love he had given ...
— The International Monthly, Volume 2, No. 4, March, 1851 • Various

... his gurgling throat. He has valets now enough: they stood aloof then, Shaking their dripping ears upon the shore, All roaring "Help!" but offering none; and as For duty (as you call it)—I did mine then, 440 Now do yours. Hence, and bow and cringe ...
— The Works of Lord Byron - Poetry, Volume V. • Lord Byron

... down from its altar, made of dead men's bones, and see what a flutter there is in the camp, how new laws are made and old laws shoved aside, and new laws fixed over, and the highest and the lowest will lie and cringe and drag themselves on their knees in front of it to protect it and worship it. Don't talk to me about your wood idols; they hain't nothin' to be compared to it. They stay where they're put, they don't rare round and kill their worshippers as this Whiskey idol duz. I'd think enough sight more of ...
— Around the World with Josiah Allen's Wife • Marietta Holley

... dust; be at one's feet, fall at one's feet; craven; crouch before, throw oneself at the feet of; swallow the leek, swallow the pill; kiss the rod; turn the other cheek; avaler les couleuvres [Fr.], gulp down. obey &c 743; kneel to, bow to, pay homage to, cringe to, truckle to; bend the neck, bend the knee; kneel, fall on one's knees, bow submission, courtesy, curtsy, kowtow. pocket the affront; make the best of, make a virtue of necessity; grin and abide, grin and bear it, shrug the shoulders, resign oneself; submit ...
— Roget's Thesaurus of English Words and Phrases: Body • Roget

... for you, mother," said Florence, whose own eyes had a suspicion of tears in them. "It was just a passing weakness, and I am all right now. Yes, I will get the Scholarship, and I will stoop to Aunt Susan's ways—I will cringe to her if necessary; I will do my best to propitiate Sir John Wallis, and I will act like a snob in every sense of the word. There now, Mummy, I see you are dying to have the box opened. We will open it ...
— A Bunch of Cherries - A Story of Cherry Court School • L. T. Meade

... not stir: Do you mark, I will not. Let me see the wretch That dares attempt to force me. Why, you slaves Created only to make legs, and cringe; To carry in a dish, and shift a trencher; That have not souls to hope a blessing Beyond your master's leavings; you that were born Only to consume meat and drink; Who advances? Who ...
— The Mirror of Taste, and Dramatic Censor, Vol. I, No. 4, April 1810 • Various

... holder of the decisive note in the affairs of that great department store known as "The Colossus," may not by design have carried an air that would indicate the man to whom small tradesman regarded it as a mark of good breeding to cringe, but even in a place where his name was not known his appearance would strongly have appealed to commercial confidence. That instinct which in earlier life had prompted fearless speculation, now crystalized into conscious force, gave unconscious authority to ...
— The Colossus - A Novel • Opie Read

... him. He was not afraid of the woman; and in pleading his cause with her he could stand up for himself courageously. He had studied his speech, and having studied it, he knew how to utter the words. He did not blush, nor stammer, nor cringe. Of grandfather or grandmother belonging to himself he had probably never heard, but he could so speak of his noble ancestors as to produce belief in Lizzie's mind. And he almost succeeded in convincing her that he was, by the consent of mankind, the greatest preacher ...
— The Eustace Diamonds • Anthony Trollope

... most piteous things is the grovelling tendency of that section of human nature which has not yet been educated sufficiently to lift itself up above temporary trappings and ornaments; pitiful it is to see men, gifted in intellect, or distinguished for bravery, flinch and cringe before one of their own flesh and blood, who, having neither cleverness nor courage, but only a Title, presumes upon that foolish appendage so far as to consider himself superior to both valour and ability. As well might a stuffed boar's head assume a superiority ...
— The Treasure of Heaven - A Romance of Riches • Marie Corelli

... and see this thing through. Some perverse will made him watch his father drawn over the borders of life. And yet, now, every day, the great red-hot stroke of horrified fear through the bowels of the son struck a further inflammation. Gerald went about all day with a tendency to cringe, as if there were the point of a sword of Damocles pricking the nape ...
— Women in Love • D. H. Lawrence

... doves and drink the spirit of purple and golden grapes—those whom the world serves, and who are so arrogant in their regality. He must not forecast the falling of such, but pity them—and speak, if they would listen—for their need is often greater than that of the menials who cringe before their empty greatness, blinded by their kingly trappings. The world so often betrays them at the end, strips them to nakedness and leaves them to die—for they are the cripples, the sick, the blind in spirit.... Delicately he must attend the brutal ...
— Fate Knocks at the Door - A Novel • Will Levington Comfort

... which his father had hardly crushed in his own heart? For what, forsooth, shall a Negro want with pride amid the studied humiliations of fifty million fellows? Well sped, my boy, before the world had dubbed your ambition insolence, had held your ideals unattainable, and taught you to cringe and bow. Better far this nameless void that stops my life than a sea of sorrow ...
— The Souls of Black Folk • W. E. B. Du Bois

... caprices, in their ideal impersonations—these were the gods that England, in the majesty of her State, in the sovereignty of her chartered weal, must abase herself to then. To the vices of tyranny, to low companions and their companions, and their kindred, the State must cringe and kneel then. To these,—men who meddled with affairs of State,—who took, even at such a time, the State to be their business,—must address themselves; for these were the councils in which England's peace and war were settled then, and the Tribune could ...
— The Philosophy of the Plays of Shakspere Unfolded • Delia Bacon

... my mother, I'd hit you down for that," he said, clenching his fists. "What do you know about things to talk to me like that? Who are you to take his side and cringe to him? If you can't judge him, there's plenty that can, and it's you who are pig-headed, not me, because you don't see I'm fighting your battle for you. It may seem too late to fight for you; but it's never too late to hate a wicked beast, ...
— The Spinners • Eden Phillpotts

... shouted. "You can lie in the dock when you stand there and tell them you never murdered Douglas Romilly! That makes you cringe, doesn't it? I don't want to make a scene, but the woman you're in love with had better hear what I have to say. Are you going to give ...
— The Cinema Murder • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... Wilson Porter, under control of an Oriental spirit, held her bared hands and arms in the flames of a large coal oil lamp. She also heated lamp chimneys and handled them as readily as she would in their normal condition, and made several gentlemen cringe and some ladies screech by slightly touching them with the hot glass. The test was made under supervision of a committee of doctors and well known physicians, who reported at the conclusion that previous to its commencement they examined the lady's hands and arms, and that they were in their natural ...
— Buchanan's Journal of Man, May 1887 - Volume 1, Number 4 • Various

... Perhaps her husband might have had mercy on her, but they were both cowed by the pitiless brute of a step-son, whose only view was to goad her into driving their profitable traffic to her last gasp. But there was no outbreak between them and Harold. The father's nature was to cringe and fawn, and the son estimated those thews and muscles too well to gratify his hatred by open provocation, and was only surly and dogged, keeping himself almost entirely out of the way. Alice wanted nothing but to look at her son—"her beautiful ...
— My Young Alcides - A Faded Photograph • Charlotte M. Yonge

... blest By former ages, who else— Such, so soulless, so poor, Is the race of men whom I see— Seem'd but a dream of the heart, Seem'd but a cry of desire. Yes! I believe that there liv'd Others like thee in the past, Not like the men of the crowd Who all round me to-day Bluster or cringe, and make life Hideous, and arid, and vile; But souls temper'd with fire, Fervent, heroic, and good, Helpers ...
— The Ontario Readers: The High School Reader, 1886 • Ministry of Education

... polite,' growled Jill, who had been reading the letter over my shoulder. 'How can you cringe so to ...
— Uncle Max • Rosa Nouchette Carey

... daughter!—mere echoes of their lord and master. She had behaved badly, of course; in a few days she supposed the report of her outburst would be all over the place. She did not care. Even for Roger's sake she was not going to cringe to these ...
— Marriage a la mode • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... my preventing his future ill usage:—Fortune has enabled me to act independent either of his frown or his favour;—I have taken such measures, in consequence of his base usage, as will guard us against the effects of the one, without obliging us to cringe for the other. ...
— The Politician Out-Witted • Samuel Low

... no! I neither want to cringe to the mob, nor be its master; I prefer to go my own way alone . . ." ...
— The Comedienne • Wladyslaw Reymont

... is cooperative, as is every other phase of the mental life of men. We gather courage as we watch a fellow worker face his danger with a brave spirit, for we will not be outdone. Amour propre will not permit us to cringe or give in, though we are weary to death of a struggle. But also we thrill with a common feeling at the sight of the hero holding his own, we are enthused by it, we wish to be with him; and his shining example ...
— The Foundations of Personality • Abraham Myerson

... She hates me!" And in his heart he despised and hated himself. He cursed his poverty, his lack of resource. "Why am I, the evangel of this faith, dependent on others for revelation. Why must I beg and cringe for money, for power?" He was in the full surge of this flood of indignant query when ...
— The Tyranny of the Dark • Hamlin Garland

... know, madam, what is and what is not disreputable in this conventional world. It is not considered disreputable to cringe to the vices of a court, or to accept a pension wrung from the industry of the nation, in return for base servility. It is not considered disreputable to take tithes, intended for the service of God, and lavish them away at ...
— Peter Simple and The Three Cutters, Vol. 1-2 • Frederick Marryat

... a surprise to us, her husband was a still greater one; and I had difficulty in recognizing the Adolf Scherer who came to our dinner party as the personage of the business world before whom lesser men were wont to cringe. He seemed rather mysteriously to have shed that personality; become an awkward, ingratiating, rather too exuberant, ordinary man with a marked German accent. From time to time I found myself speculating uneasily on this phenomenon as I glanced down the table at his great torso, ...
— The Crossing • Winston Churchill

... seek renown in arms, Pant after fame and rush to war's alarms; To shining palaces let fools resort And dunces cringe to be esteemed at court. Mine be the pleasure of a rural life, From noise remote and ignorant of strife, Far from the painted belle and white-gloved beau, The lawless masquerade and midnight show; ...
— Brief History of English and American Literature • Henry A. Beers

... on, "whenever I think of government in itself. But when I look on the world at large, when I see of what poor stuff those men are made who contrive to uphold their rule and what sort of antagonists we are likely to find in them, then I can only feel how disgraceful it would be to cringe before them and not to face them myself and try conclusions with them on the field. All of them, I perceive," he added, "beginning with our own friends here, hold to it that the ruler should only differ from his subjects by the splendour ...
— Cyropaedia - The Education Of Cyrus • Xenophon

... to struggle, an' never to cringe or fall— Still I worked for Charley, for Charley was now my all; And Charley was pretty good to me, with scarce a word or frown, Till at last he went a-courtin', and brought a ...
— Farm Ballads • Will Carleton

... prowl in the canyons of dismal unrest; I cringe — I'm so weak and so small. I can't get my bearings, I'm crushed and oppressed With the haste and the waste of it all. The slaves and the madman, the lust and the sweat, The fear in the faces I see; The getting, the spending, ...
— Rhymes of a Rolling Stone • Robert W. Service

... should be ashamed? Let it be told. Let it all be known. Have you not been good and pure? Have not I been true to you? Bear up your courage, and let the man do his worst. Not to save even you would I cringe before such a man as that. And were I to do so, I should ...
— Dr. Wortle's School • Anthony Trollope

... went from England into France, Nor yet to learn to cringe nor dance, Nor yet to ride nor fence; Nor did I go like one of those That do return with half a ...
— Specimens with Memoirs of the Less-known British Poets, Complete • George Gilfillan

... No metamorphosis can nature change; Effects are chain'd to causes; generally, The rascal born will like a rascal die. His Prince's favours follow'd him in vain; They chang'd the circumstance, but not the man. While out of pocket, and his spirits low, He'd beg, write panegyrics, cringe, and bow; But when good pensions had his labours crown'd, His panegyrics into satires turn'd; O what assiduous pains does Prior take To let great Dorset see he could mistake! Dissembling nature false description gave, Show'd him the poet, but ...
— Calamities and Quarrels of Authors • Isaac D'Israeli

... which they fall, can we possibly love the Power which behaves so? What child could love a father who might at any time strike him? I cannot believe that God wants an unquestioning and fatuous trust, and still less the sort of deference we pay to one who may do us a mischief if we do not cringe before him. All that is utterly unworthy of the ...
— Father Payne • Arthur Christopher Benson

... rode, he thought, too, of his newly arrived brother, and the hatefulness of personal comparison made him almost cringe beneath their flagellations. Bill, so big of heart and body, so lacking in the many abilities which go to make up the man in men's eyes, but which count for so little in a woman's, so strong in the buoyancy and fearlessness that was ...
— The Law-Breakers • Ridgwell Cullum

... comparatively lucky. Mister Lynch, our officer, was what I may call a normal bucko. He hazed for the results rather than for the pleasure of hazing, though I think he did get some satisfaction out of thumping the men. You feel a fine thrill when you see a half dozen huskies cringe away before you with fear in their eyes. I imagine it is the same thrill a wild animal tamer feels as he faces his beasts. I felt this fascinating sensation many times after I had become a mate of ships. Lynch ...
— The Blood Ship • Norman Springer

... a distance unknown to him, although it seemed long, they commenced to beat their drum, and raise the scalp halloo. The next village was near; they were calling for the gauntlet, and the stake. This made his flesh cringe, and pricked him to action. Now, or never! With a great spring and a wild whoop he bolted into ...
— Boys' Book of Frontier Fighters • Edwin L. Sabin

... Doth heaven with all its splendors lie; Daily, with souls that cringe and plot, We Sinais ...
— The Home Book of Verse, Vol. 3 (of 4) • Various

... enabled him to detect the fingers of the slave suddenly raised to his lips, and a shrill whistle would have consigned him over to certain and immediate destruction; but he struck down the uplifted hand with a blow which made his treacherous conductor crouch and cringe ...
— Traditions of Lancashire, Volume 2 (of 2) • John Roby

... moment to doubt whether there might not be some mistake: he had expected to see him cringe. But he took him by the collar behind, and pushed him along to the quarter-deck, where an elderly officer was ...
— A Rough Shaking • George MacDonald

... back. As any screaming creature of the jungle, he hysterically squalled his indignation. But he made no whimper. Nor did he wince or cringe to the blows. He bored straight in, striving, without avoiding a blow, to beat and meet the blow with his teeth. So hard was he flung down the last time that his side smashed painfully against the rail, and Van Horn ...
— Jerry of the Islands • Jack London

... seemed to be the domain of one man, so vast his power, so august his dignity, absolute master of the lives and property of one hundred and twenty millions, for the people were now deprived of the election of magistrates and the creation of laws. How could the greatest nobles otherwise than cringe to the supreme captain of the armies, the prince of the Senate, and the high-priest of the national divinities—himself, the recipient of honors only paid to gods! But Augustus kept up the forms of the old republic—all the old offices, the old dignities, the ...
— Ancient States and Empires • John Lord

... myself, when night comes round me, And the soft chain of thought has bound me, I whisper, "Sir, your eyes are killing— You owe no mortal man a shilling— You never cringe for star or garter, You're much too wise to be a martyr— And since you must, be food for vermin, You don't feel much desire for ermine!" Wisdom is a mine, no doubt, If one can but find it out— But whate'er I think or say, I'm an April fool ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Vol. 13 Issue 364 - 4 Apr 1829 • Various

... Snaw-broo, snow-brew (melted snow). Sned, to lop, to prune. Sneeshin mill, a snuff-box. Snell, bitter, biting. Snick, a latch; snick-drawing scheming; he weel a snick can draw he is good at cheating. Snirtle, to snigger. Snoods, fillets worn by maids. Snool, to cringe, to snub. Snoove, to go slowly. Snowkit, snuffed. Sodger, soger, a soldier. Sonsie, sonsy, pleasant, good-natured, jolly. Soom, to swim. Soor, sour. Sough, v. sugh. Souk, suck. Soupe, sup, liquid. Souple, supple. Souter, cobbler. Sowens, ...
— Poems And Songs Of Robert Burns • Robert Burns

... to tell most of all was the fact that even though a snowball happened to miss the boy at whom it had been aimed, there was always a good chance of its finding a mark in the back of another fellow, who, being struck so unexpectedly, must cringe, and feel ...
— Fred Fenton Marathon Runner - The Great Race at Riverport School • Allen Chapman

... saw him stoop and take something from his prostrate enemy. A sharp doubt assailed her. She saw the wretched Tawny cringe lower and cover his face. She saw the moonlight glint upon the thing in ...
— The Knave of Diamonds • Ethel May Dell

... Starkweather, and interrupted himself long enough to kiss her, "I'll say Henry's got a darned sight better judgment 'n you have.... Go on and blush. Make a good job of it. Ashamed of yourself? So 'm I. Sit down there and cringe. You too, Henry." He himself remained on his feet. "Funny thing," he said, after a pause. "Only chance I ever had to get married myself was somethin' like this is—oh, I wasn't a gilt loafer, like Henry is; I was workin' sixteen hours a day, but I wasn't makin' money enough. Both ...
— Rope • Holworthy Hall

... and ate delicately and scattered money. But nothing lasted. He had no sooner made purchase with a great man and climbed a little than the scaffolding fell from his feet. He thought meanly of human nature for in his profess he must cringe or snarl, always the undermost dog. Yet he had some liking for the priests, who had been kind to him, and there was always a glow in his heart for the pale wife who dwelt with his child in the attic in Billingsgate. Under ...
— The Path of the King • John Buchan

... considerably. Now a yellow pumpkin was coming which was not a pumpkin, and for the first time during the day opportunity favored me. I expected the fox to cross the road a few yards below me, but just then I heard him whisk through the grass, and he bounded upon the fence a few yards above. He seemed to cringe as he saw his old enemy, and to depress his fur to half his former dimensions. Three bounds and he had cleared the road, when my bullet tore up the sod beside him, but to this hour I do not know whether I looked at the fox without seeing my gun, or whether I did sight him across its barrel. I only ...
— Winter Sunshine • John Burroughs

... and stars! Whip him.—Were't twenty of the greatest tributaries That do acknowledge Caesar, should I find them So saucy with the hand of she here,—what's her name Since she was Cleopatra?—Whip him, fellows, Till like a boy you see him cringe his face, And whine aloud for mercy: take ...
— Antony and Cleopatra • William Shakespeare [Collins edition]

... you fool, you fool!" she said fiercely, panting for breath with which to end me. "Oh, you dream-child, you moonraker, what are you doing in a world where men work for their pleasures and women have to cringe for the scraps? What was I to do when Porfirio shut me out of doors, and you—you, who had caused it, refused to come with me? Was I to spread my wings and fly straight into the lap of the Madonna? You would say so, I suppose! Your flights were very fine, but one cannot live on ...
— The Fool Errant • Maurice Hewlett

... effects of the British bayonet charges and the way the Germans—Uhlans, Guards, and artillerymen—recoil from them. "If you go near them with the bayonet they squeal like pigs," "they beg for mercy on their knees," "the way they cringe before the bayonet is pitiful"—such are examples of the hundreds of references to ...
— Tommy Atkins at War - As Told in His Own Letters • James Alexander Kilpatrick



Words linked to "Cringe" :   bend, move, flex, retract, shrink back



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