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Embarrassment   /ɪmbˈɛrəsmənt/   Listen
Embarrassment

noun
1.
The shame you feel when your inadequacy or guilt is made public.
2.
The state of being embarrassed (usually by some financial inadequacy).
3.
Some event that causes someone to be embarrassed.
4.
Extreme excess.  Synonyms: overplus, plethora, superfluity.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Embarrassment" Quotes from Famous Books



... don't quite understand. One doesn't expect to find any embarrassment in the manner of a well-bred woman. And yet she seemed to be embarrassed when she spoke to me. Perhaps I produced an unfortunate ...
— The Black Robe • Wilkie Collins

... got you into some trouble," he said, and even as he said it it sounded wrong, like everything he said to this particular person in the long gloves. "The fact is," he resumed, desperately, "the fact is, we are being chased by the police." Then the last flattening hammer fell upon poor Evan's embarrassment; for the fluffy brown head with the furry black cap did not turn by a section of ...
— The Ball and The Cross • G.K. Chesterton

... implications in discourse, would by Cecilia have been willingly dispensed with, since to her their names were as new as their persons, and since knowing nothing of their histories, parties or connections, she could to nothing allude: it therefore served but to heighten her colour and increase her embarrassment. ...
— Cecilia Volume 1 • Frances Burney

... up to the stable door, now hastily joined them; and last, but not least, Mrs. Mayhew came panting upon the scene. Van Berg felt the hand of the young lady trembling in nervous apprehension upon his arm, from which, in her embarrassment, she forgot to remove it. But the artist did not fail her, and in answer to Mr. Burleigh's eager questions as to the cause of the accident, explained all so plausibly, and in such a matter-of-fact manner as left ...
— A Face Illumined • E. P. Roe

... the Austrian service, but I have never served in reality. I have the contract for the supply of oxen to the City of Venice, and I get the cattle from Styria and Hungary. This contract gives me a net profit of ten thousand florins a year; but an unforeseen embarrassment, which I must remedy; a fraudulent bankruptcy, and some extraordinary expenditure, place me for the present in monetary difficulties. Four years ago I heard a great deal about you, and wished very much to make your acquaintance; I firmly ...
— The Memoires of Casanova, Complete • Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

... White." He licked his lips, and there was an unaccustomed embarrassment in his manner. "Maybe you'll come along one night after the show and have a little supper. You know I'm very keen on you and all ...
— Jack O' Judgment • Edgar Wallace

... be well to mention here the embarrassment possible to arise from leaving on the statute books the so-called "tenure-of-office acts," and to earnestly recommend their total repeal. It could not have been the intention of the framers of the Constitution, when providing that appointments made by the President should receive the consent ...
— State of the Union Addresses of Ulysses S. Grant • Ulysses S. Grant

... be kept waiting, the previous events of the afternoon, and all that happened in the copse and garden, had faded out of Elinor's mind. She forgot Stanfield and the 6th and everything about it. Her embarrassment and trouble were gone. She went in gayly and told her mother all about this wonderful incident. "The Rector was trying for a sixpence. But, mamma, Phil must not be so ready with his sovereigns, must he? We shall have nothing to live upon ...
— The Marriage of Elinor • Margaret Oliphant

... that's the most important. I should like to paint you in the early morning when the day is young and innocent and beautiful—like—like—" He was careful to break off in a most natural seeming embarrassment. "That's a bit thick, but she'll swallow it all right. Gone down? ...
— The Incomplete Amorist • E. Nesbit

... the land was spent, certainly, before his receipts equalled his expenditure; and strangely enough, by the time the farmer had paid off his debt, the doctor was involved, not to a large amount, but enough to render his "appearance" to a certain degree fictitious. This embarrassment, to do him justice, was not of long continuance; he became the fashion; and before prosperity had turned his head by an influx of wealth, so as to render him careless, he got rid of his debt, and then his wife agreed with ...
— Turns of Fortune - And Other Tales • Mrs. S. C. Hall

... away. Not so quickly that there will be comment. But quickly enough to relieve you of future embarrassment in my behalf. ...
— Contrary Mary • Temple Bailey

... should all be put on an enduring basis, not subject to easy attack, nor its stability to doubt or dispute. Our currency should continue under the supervision of the Government. The several forms of our paper money offer, in my judgment, a constant embarrassment to the Government and a safe balance in the Treasury. Therefore I believe it necessary to devise a system which, without diminishing the circulating medium or offering a premium for its contraction, will present a remedy for those arrangements which, temporary in their nature, might ...
— Messages and Papers of William McKinley V.2. • William McKinley

... Suffrage Bill was carried, for I believe that women have thought more and accepted the responsibilities of voting to a greater extent than was ever expected of them. During the week I was accorded a welcome home in the old Academy of Music, Rundle street, where I listened with embarrassment to the avalanche of eulogium that overwhelmed me. "What a good thing it is, Miss Spence, that you have only one idea," a gentleman once said to me on my country tour. He wished thus to express his feeling concerning my singleness of purpose towards effective voting. ...
— An Autobiography • Catherine Helen Spence

... other things, boy—when you ask for them," she answered me with a very beautiful look of affection that while it pleased me greatly also made for me an unreasonable embarrassment. ...
— The Daredevil • Maria Thompson Daviess

... Under his guidance the Venetians adopted a singularly bold and ingenious policy of offensive defence. The heavy Genoese vessels were much hampered by the shallow water and intricate passages through the lagoon. By taking advantage of their embarrassment and his own local knowledge, Pisani carried out a series of movements which entirely turned the tables on the invaders. Between the 23rd and 25th of August he executed a succession of night attacks, during which he sank vessels laden with stores not only in the canals ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 6, Slice 2 - "Chicago, University of" to "Chiton" • Various

... forget the looks and tones of a bashful friend, in describing his embarrassment. He was at Holkham, the seat of Mr. Coke, our Revolutionary champion, who, being in Parliament at the time, moved, session after session, the acknowledgment of our independence,—am I right here?—and actually ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 18, No. 106, August, 1866 • Various

... what to think, and in fear lest she should bring him some ill news, had not courage to ask her any questions; but she, who had never set foot into the sultan's palace before, and knew not what was every day practised there, freed him from his embarrassment, and said to him: "Son, I have seen the sultan, and am very well persuaded he has seen me too; for I placed myself just before him; but he was so much taken up with those who attended on all sides of him, that I pitied him, and wondered at his patience. ...
— The Arabian Nights - Their Best-known Tales • Unknown

... point of view of modern organization for war but required keeping in careful check from other points of view, had produced forces which the Emperor was powerless to hold in. Even in Bismarck's time readers of his "Reflections and Recollections" will remember how he felt the embarrassment of his foreign policy caused by the growing and deflecting influences of Moltke, and even of his friend Roon. And there was no Bismarck to hold the Staffs in check for reasons of expediency in the years before 1914. The military mind ...
— Before the War • Viscount Richard Burton Haldane

... arrival of the warriors of the First Crusade, which had been in a great degree initiated owing to the representations of his own ambassadors, though the help which he wanted from the West was simply mercenary forces and not the immense hosts which arrived to his consternation and embarrassment. The first part, under Peter the Hermit, he got rid of by sending them on to Asia Minor, where they were massacred by the Turks (1096). The second and much more serious host of warriors, led by Godfrey of Bouillon, he conducted also into Asia, promising to supply them with provisions in return for ...
— Project Gutenberg Encyclopedia

... flushed with embarrassment. "Look out or they'll have you," he cautioned fearfully, "I kinder feel that big one has singled me out, an' I don't want to encourage ...
— The Boy Chums in the Forest - or Hunting for Plume Birds in the Florida Everglades • Wilmer M. Ely

... first take their places, leaving intervals for the gentlemen; after being seated, each is desired to call on a gentleman to sit beside her; and thus the lady of the house is relieved from all embarrassment of etiquette as ...
— The Cook's Oracle; and Housekeeper's Manual • William Kitchiner

... Stewart and Peter that had been decided on. Stewart raised the money somehow, and Peter saw her off, palpitant and eager, with the pin he had sent her to Semmering at her throat. She kissed Peter on the cheek in the station, rather to his embarrassment. From the lowered window, as the train pulled out, she waved a ...
— The Street of Seven Stars • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... he used," interrupted Ruth, while Tom recovered from his confusion and Helen from her enjoyment of her twin's embarrassment. "He says you shall ...
— Ruth Fielding in Moving Pictures - Or Helping The Dormitory Fund • Alice Emerson

... vigour, was bursting its swaddling clothes. Is it inexcusable to say that by this decision, which was far ahead of the current opinion of the day, he saved the Empire, possibly from disruption, certainly from much embarrassment and much discredit.'[11] Lord John was a man of vision. He saw, beyond most of his contemporaries, the coming magnitude of the Empire, and he did his best to shape on broad lines and to far-reaching issues the policy of England towards her children beyond the seas. Lord John recognised ...
— Lord John Russell • Stuart J. Reid

... beset with vetturini. Let us recur to some of these miseries of travel, which may at least claim a wide sympathy, for most of us are familiar with them. It is not necessary even to leave our own island to find how great an embarrassment too much help may prove, but we certainly have nothing in our own experience quite equal to the lively picture of ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, Vol. 53, No. 331, May, 1843 • Various

... Avdotia herself seemed to catch the infection of the happiness which sparkled at this period in Papa's large blue eyes; yet there were moments also when she would be seized with such a fit of shyness that I, who knew the feeling well, was full of sympathy and compassion as I regarded her embarrassment. At moments of this kind she seemed to be afraid of every glance and every movement—to be supposing that every one was looking at her, every one thinking of no one but her, and that unfavourably. She would glance timidly from one person to another, the colour ...
— Youth • Leo Tolstoy

... applause greeted her as she hurried into the parlor, and a number of grown people smiled quite musically. Her quick woman's wit told her how to retaliate and divide the embarrassment of the occasion. As she passed me she said in ...
— A Brace Of Boys - 1867, From "Little Brother" • Fitz Hugh Ludlow

... accompanied by a surging throng of cheering admirers, armed with torches, to the tune of "See the Conquering Hero comes," he was addressed in congratulatory vein by several of his fellow-citizens, and it was only when a first and second attempt to fly from the embarrassment of so tumultuous a welcome had failed, that he succeeded, on a third, in making his escape. The "small haberdasher," who had been deemed incapable of organising railway schemes, had indeed become something ...
— The Story of the Cambrian - A Biography of a Railway • C. P. Gasquoine

... of the meeting was unable to recall a single idea concerning the owner of it. She saw before her a man whose decidedly podgy figure yet bore a military air, and was not without a certain grace of confidence. For his bearing was even marked by the total absence of any embarrassment, anxiety, or any even of that air of apology which one individual seems almost to owe to another. At the same time there was not a suspicion of truculence or even repulse in his carriage. There was self-assertion, but not of the antagonistic—solely of the inviting sort. His person beamed with ...
— Weighed and Wanting • George MacDonald

... brows knitted and eyes anxious; the maid, Jane, standing respectfully behind her mistress; Manvers to one side and out of the way, but plainly eager and distraught; Iff in the centre of the stage, his slight, round-shouldered figure lending him a deceptive effect of embarrassment which was only enhanced by his semi-placating, semi-wistful smile and his small, blinking eyes; the captain looming over him, authority and menace incarnate in his heavy, square-set, sturdy body and heavy-browed, square-jawed, ...
— The Bandbox • Louis Joseph Vance

... soothingly. "You ask me to relieve you of the embarrassment of this matter. I quite agree with Mrs. Abbott that there is too much ignorance about these things, but she must recognise, I am sure, that this is not the proper moment for enlightening ...
— Sylvia's Marriage • Upton Sinclair

... She thought she was going to say something more, but she stopped stiffly at that, and they both stood in an embarrassment which neither could hide from the other. He repeated his offer, in other terms, and she was able finally to thank him a little more fitly, and to say that she should not forget his kind offer; she should not forget all he had done for her, all the trouble he had taken, and they parted ...
— The Coast of Bohemia • William Dean Howells

... persons feel a kind of embarrassment when meeting for the first time one of whom they have long heard much. I was sensible of this feeling when I ...
— The Path of Duty, and Other Stories • H. S. Caswell

... cannon had occurred to him suddenly one day, in one of his New-World-ward reveries, and he had made haste to realize it, carefully studying the form and general effect of the Austrian cannon under the gallery of the Ducal Palace, to the high embarrassment of the Croat sentry who paced up and down there, and who did not feel free to order off a priest as he would a civilian. Don Ippolito's model was of admirable finish; he even painted the carriage yellow and black, because that of the original was so, and colored the piece ...
— A Foregone Conclusion • W. D. Howells

... letter being placed in his hands, expressed much embarrassment, but decided to go in search of the Canada parties provided he had a safe conduct for C. C. Clay, Jacob Thompson, James P. Holcombe, and George N. Sanders to Washington, in company with himself. The safe conduct ...
— Slavery and Four Years of War, Vol. 1-2 • Joseph Warren Keifer

... they are invariably consistent in kindness and consideration; they stand by, and stand to, one another with a paternal amity, which is only outwardly disturbed by politics; embarrassment or necessity effaces conventional distinctions of politics, and Whig or Tory is always ready to provide for "honest Jack," or "do something" for "poor Fred." But we are not to consider their exertions in this way, accompanied with any self-sacrifice or self-denial; holding ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. 327 - Vol. 53, January, 1843 • Various

... for that alone, I acknowledge," rejoined Mr. Stevens, with considerable embarrassment. "He insulted me some time ago, and I want ...
— The Garies and Their Friends • Frank J. Webb

... was becoming a favorite belief, though it must be borne in mind that education in those days was confined to the cloister, and any departure from old founded tenets was regarded as heresy. It was this peculiar doctrine that caused Columbus much embarrassment in subsequent years. His greatest enemies were the narrow minds that regarded religion as the Ultima Thule of intellectual endeavor. In spite of these facts, however, it was becoming more and more the popular belief ...
— Christopher Columbus and His Monument Columbia • Various

... insistence upon the subject. The world is dark under the eclipsed sun and moon, and the figures are full of affectation. Painted for the convent of St. Jerome, it was necessary to include that saint and his lion, that strangely pathetic and sentimental beast, so full of embarrassment, that looks at one so wearily from many an old picture in the galleries of the world. If something of that clairvoyance which created his best work is wanting here, it has vanished altogether in that Deposition which Filippino Lippi finished, and instead of a lovely dream ...
— Florence and Northern Tuscany with Genoa • Edward Hutton

... for there sat the judge who had tried the case, calmly munching a piece of toast. The judge did not allow himself the luxury of embarrassment, but bowed to Charley with a smile, which he presently turned on Kathleen, who came as near being disconcerted as she had ever ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... more to himself than to her, went back to his desk, opened another ledger, and ran his finger down a page, repeating aloud as he did so, to her extreme embarrassment: "Mr. Schilsky—let me see. Mr. ...
— Maurice Guest • Henry Handel Richardson

... love, he generally does it up ship-shape; but if he, with malice aforethought, lays deliberate plans, he finds it the most awkward traverse to work in the world to follow them—but I did not know this. I sat by the table, and in my embarrassment kept pushing the solitary taper farther and farther from me, until at last over it went, and was extinguished ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXII. No. 3. March 1848 • Various

... faces. Four great hands twisting at white caps in an agony of embarrassment. "Why, ...
— Cheerful—By Request • Edna Ferber

... married—he had laughed at it as a foolish trap for a man to walk into; but here, without ever having spoken a word to her, with no more than the exchange of half a dozen smiles, he found himself, purple in the face with embarrassment and terror, asking her parents to sell her to him for his wife—and offering his father's two horses he had been sent to the fair to sell. But Ona's father proved as a rock—the girl was yet a child, and he was a rich man, and his daughter was not ...
— The Jungle • Upton Sinclair

... which lit the young men's faces relieved Mr. Harkutt's awkward introduction of any embarrassment, and almost before Phemie was fully aware of it, she found herself talking rapidly and in a high key with Mr. Lawrence Grant, the surveyor, while her sister was equally, although more sedately, occupied with Mr. Stephen Rice, ...
— A First Family of Tasajara • Bret Harte

... friend. It is worth while to take a lot of trouble to find the right person, and it is still more worth while to take trouble to avoid the wrong person. Find someone who has seen the hand of God in the facts of sex and who can therefore talk about them without embarrassment. And do not let yourself be deterred by the fact that you may have made mistakes already of which you are ashamed. Most of us made mistakes in our early years just because of the same ignorance which has been your ...
— Men, Women, and God • A. Herbert Gray

... began to reflect that in all probability a tutor in the house would be a trouble and embarrassment to Lady Markland: one who could come for a few hours every day (and was there not one who would be too happy of the excuse to wait upon his mistress daily?) one who could engage Geoff with work to be done, so that the mother might be free; one, ...
— A Country Gentleman and his Family • Mrs. (Margaret) Oliphant

... requested by the lady of the house, to waltz with a friend of hers, who was without a partner. The person of this neglected fair, was a little inclined to the meagre. The gallant, without the least embarrassment, declined, observing, "Ah! ma chere Madame qu'exigez vous de moi, ne savez vous pas qu'elle n'a point de sein?" In the middle of the platform of the dancers, a very fine full band was playing. At the end ...
— The Stranger in France • John Carr

... Quaker woman. Oblivious to all distinctions of rank, she talked freely and wisely on many topics, and proved herself in manner and conversation the peer of the first woman in England. Mrs. Mott did not manifest the slightest restraint or embarrassment during that marked social occasion. No fictitious superiority ever oppressed her, neither did she descend in familiar surroundings from her natural dignity, but always maintained the perfect equilibrium of ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... of James known; great Agitation The Lords meet at Guildhall Riots in London The Spanish Ambassador's House sacked Arrest of Jeffreys The Irish Night The King detained near Sheerness The Lords order him to be set at Liberty William's Embarrassment Arrest of Feversham Arrival of James in London Consultation at Windsor The Dutch Troops occupy Whitehall Message from the Prince delivered to James James sets out for Rochester; Arrival of William at Saint James's He is advised to assume the ...
— The History of England from the Accession of James II. - Complete Contents of the Five Volumes • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... embarrassment was not lost upon the hunters, who ran rapidly up—till within ten paces of the prostrate animal—and discharging their guns into his body, prevented him from ever again getting to his feet. His hide was the only part of him that afterwards attained the ...
— Bruin - The Grand Bear Hunt • Mayne Reid

... rooms. The resources of private society also were not closed to them. Mr. and Mrs. Gamme were also there and gave immense dinners, and the airy Mrs. Hooghley, who laughed a little at the Gammes' substantial gatherings and herself improvised charming pic-nics. So there was really little embarrassment in the social relations between Colonel Albert and Endymion. They resolved themselves chiefly into arranging joint expeditions to Hainault. Endymion had a perpetual invitation there, and it seemed that the transactions between Mr. Neuchatel and the ...
— Endymion • Benjamin Disraeli

... in which Sir Richard Fanshawe's allowance was paid, and the embarrassment into which he was consequently thrown, he has left ample proof in his letter to his brother-in-law Sir Philip Warwick, dated a few weeks before his death; in which he tells him that he had been obliged to pawn his ...
— Memoirs of Lady Fanshawe • Lady Fanshawe

... friend and almost as great a philosopher as he, she was bent on making so famous a conquest, but after many persistent efforts was obliged eventually to abandon the attempt. Her philosopher could not endure her, nor could he—and this greatly amused his own party—conceal his embarrassment; but it was not philosophy altogether that steeled his breast. The truth, according to Lloyd, was that the philosopher was deeply in love with another, an English lady, who was also stopping in Abbeville at the time. Of all Currie heard concerning Smith from Captain ...
— Life of Adam Smith • John Rae

... reason to be satisfied with his own success, for his son he cherished a yet higher ambition and one which he did not conceal. He said openly that he intended him to be Prime Minister of his country. The knowledge of this provoked many jests among the boy's friends and caused him no slight embarrassment. It conspired with the shyness and reserve, which were innate in him, to win him from the outset a reputation for pride and aloofness. If he had not been forced to mix with those of his own age, and if he had not resolutely set himself to overcome this ...
— Victorian Worthies - Sixteen Biographies • George Henry Blore

... news, and soon silver gongs and bells began ringing all over the kingdom, and cries of "The Emperor! The Emperor!" added to the general excitement. Holding fast to the sides of the throne and still grasping the little fan and parasol, the Scarecrow sat blinking with embarrassment. ...
— The Royal Book of Oz • L. Frank Baum

... am I to profit by his advice? In what shape shall I commence my eccentric course? A good general at the head of a large army, on the eve of a general battle, with the enemy full in view, feels less embarrassment than a young author finds in marshalling his crude ideas, and placing the raw recruits of the brain in any thing like respectable order. For the title, that is quite a matter of business, and depends more ...
— The English Spy • Bernard Blackmantle

... appointed place. All being seated, the maitre d'hotel claps his hands, and in an instant, at one coup, the covers are nipped away, as if with the same hand, by waiters stationed at regular distances around the tables. Then the serious work of eating commences. If any embarrassment arises, a clap of the hand calls attention to it, and a sign directs its immediate remedy. Then, as each course is finished, another clap stations the waiters again at their old places, and at a wave of the hand all the dishes skip off the ...
— Canada and the States • Edward William Watkin

... becomes a figure in fiction, and Sherlock, while he was as yet a novelty, was nearly as attractive as the complications in which he involved himself. Riddle-story writers in general, however, encounter the obvious embarrassment that their detective is obliged to lavish so much attention on the professional services which the exigencies of the tale demand of him, that he has very little leisure to expound his own personal equation—the rather since the attitude of peering into a millstone is not, of itself, ...
— Stories by Modern American Authors • Julian Hawthorne

... at John, who was standing beside the clergyman. "Good-bye," she repeated, holding out her little hand shyly towards him. John took it and grew redder than ever as he felt that the lady was watching him. Then the little girl blushed and laughed in her small embarrassment, and climbed ...
— A Tale of a Lonely Parish • F. Marion Crawford

... foresee, must produce the contrary effect. Can we, from motives of kindness, incur or risk the charge of being deficient in spirit, in penetration, or in foresight? Do we tell another of his faults, when the communication, though probably beneficial to him, cannot be made without embarrassment or pain to ourselves, and may probably lessen his regard for our person, or his opinion of our judgment? Can we stifle a repartee which would wound another; though the utterance of it would gratify our vanity, and the suppression of it may disparage our character for wit? If any ...
— A Practical View of the Prevailing Religious System of Professed Christians, in the Middle and Higher Classes in this Country, Contrasted with Real Christianity. • William Wilberforce

... down to tell one of the numberless adventures which compose the life of Arsene Lupin, I feel a genuine embarrassment, because it is quite clear to me that even the least important of these adventures is known to every one of my readers. As a matter of fact, there is not a move on the part of "our national thief," as ...
— The Blonde Lady - Being a Record of the Duel of Wits between Arsne Lupin and the English Detective • Maurice Leblanc

... wondered—oh, HOW I had wondered!—if he were groping about in his little mind for something plausible and not too grotesque. It would tax his invention, certainly, and I felt, this time, over his real embarrassment, a curious thrill of triumph. It was a sharp trap for the inscrutable! He couldn't play any longer at innocence; so how the deuce would he get out of it? There beat in me indeed, with the passionate throb of this question an equal dumb appeal as to how the deuce I should. ...
— The Turn of the Screw • Henry James

... earlier than I thought," and she shook hands with Henry, and then turned to his friend without the slightest embarrassment, as ...
— The Man and the Moment • Elinor Glyn

... respect for her, which sentiment is indeed always an accompaniment of a worthy passion. She knew herself beloved—the knowledge was very sweet to her—and she felt herself safe from all fear of offence in the company of this honourable gentleman and true lover. With the delicious embarrassment of nascent, unavowed love, this young couple wandering by moonlight in a lonely garden, side by side, arm in arm, only exchanged the most insignificant, commonplace remarks; but if no undercurrent was betrayed by actual words, the ...
— Captain Fracasse • Theophile Gautier

... somewhat rashly given his consent, in a cooler hour began to foresee difficulties, and drove into Troy to impart them to me. I know not why, on occasions of doubt and embarrassment such as this, he ever throws himself (so to speak) on my bosom; but so it is. The Regatta, he explained, ought to take place in August, and we were already arrived at the middle of the month, Tuesday the 24th had been suggested—a very convenient date for him: it was, as I might ...
— Corporal Sam and Other Stories • A. T. Quiller-Couch

... and it is best to visit her in fancy if you wish their several acquaintance. There at Bankside was not only Shakespeare suddenly filling that place and extending his vast shadow over the region we had so troublesomely passed through, but now another embarrassment of riches attended us. We were going to visit St. Saviour's Church, because John Harvard, the son of a butcher in that parish was baptized in it, long before he could have dreamed of Emanuel College at Cambridge, or its outwandering scholars could have dreamed of naming after him another college ...
— London Films • W.D. Howells

... long since reasoned all this out for himself; so he understood; while to California John the matter had always been one to take for granted. Bob leaned forward, his earnest, sun-browned young face flushed with the sincerity—and the embarrassment—of his exposition. Amy nodded from time to time, her eyes shining, her glance every few moments seeking in triumph that of her brother. ...
— The Rules of the Game • Stewart Edward White

... pregnant with compassion for her, himself, and all the world, when she raised her head. The meeting of such a look from him filled her with agitation. She felt something strange at her heart. His eyes seemed to have penetrated to its inmost devices. Blushing like scarlet, she got up to hide an embarrassment not to be subdued; and hastily wishing the countess a good-morning curtseyed to ...
— Thaddeus of Warsaw • Jane Porter

... Eustace's concentration that he did not see Billie Bennett, seated in the front row. Billie had watched him enter with a little thrill of embarrassment. She wished that she had been content with one of the seats at the back. But her friend Jane Hubbard, who accompanied her, had ...
— Three Men and a Maid • P. G. Wodehouse

... cause to-day of more financial embarrassment, and of more dishonesties, than this determination, at all hazards, to live as well as or better than other people. There are persons who will risk their eternity upon one fine looking-glass, or who will dash out the splendors of heaven to ...
— The Abominations of Modern Society • Rev. T. De Witt Talmage

... what is best fitted to help my readers were as large as the experience that guides my speech, I should feel more assured of its value. But sometimes the very excess of the material from which one is to deduce formulas and to draw remembrances is an embarrassment, for I think I may say without lack of modesty in statement, that perhaps scarce any one can have seen more of women who have been made by disease, disorder, outward circumstance, temperament, or some combination of these, morbid in mind, or been tormented out of just ...
— Doctor and Patient • S. Weir Mitchell

... among the necessary words none are as essential as "sex" and "sexual." We must use them freely if attitude towards sex is to be improved; and their dignified and scientific usage will gradually dispel the embarrassment which many unfortunate people now experience when these words remind them that the perpetuation of life in all its higher forms has been intrusted to the cooperation of two kinds, or sexes, ...
— Sex-education - A series of lectures concerning knowledge of sex in its - relation to human life • Maurice Alpheus Bigelow

... in front in extreme weather. But it's more than a fire. It's a stimulus to thought. It refreshes your spirit, and rests your tired nerves, and it is a wonderful thing to help you unravel knotty problems. So he poked the fire and thought, while she, quite unconscious of his embarrassment, went on sipping her tea ...
— Quiet Talks on John's Gospel • S. D. Gordon

... nearer fifty pounds a year than thirty. How many thousands of tradesmen and clerks, and the like, who might have passed through life without a single embarrassment, have lived in continual trouble and fear, and found a premature grave, from this very cause, and this cause alone! When I, on my return from America, in 1800, lived a short time in Saint James's Street, following ...
— Advice to Young Men • William Cobbett

... I accepted his invitation gratefully, and the next evening Phil took me over. It was a hearty welcome that I received at the home of the Chaffins. My enjoyment of their simple hospitality would have been perfect but for the embarrassment I felt at the many apologies with which it was offered. Mrs. Chaffin knew as 'ow the tea was not as good as I was used to drinking, but she 'oped it didn't taste "murky." I assured her that it did not taste murky, although a little doubtful as ...
— The Master of Silence • Irving Bacheller

... reverie when the priest ended his talk. To my embarrassment he begged me to come with him within the altar rail and speak to the people. I had been quickened to such a degree by the experience of the previous night and by this service at dawn that I stood up at once. But there seemed ...
— The Foundations of Japan • J.W. Robertson Scott

... it!" said Father Payne, "but come, I won't be personal! Seriously, you know, the one thing I have admired in the very few great people I have ever met is the absence of embarrassment. They don't need to explain who they are, they haven't got to preface their statements of opinion by fragments of autobiography, to show their right to speak. It is convenient to feel that if people don't know who you are, they will ...
— Father Payne • Arthur Christopher Benson

... if it's unselfishness at all," said Matt. He did not go; Wade stood bareheaded with him at the outer door of his study. After awhile he said with embarrassment, "Wade! Do you think it would seem unfeeling—or out of taste, at all—if I went to see ...
— The Quality of Mercy • W. D. Howells

... nodded Driggs, jumping down off the truck, in haste to get away from the embarrassment of being thanked. "Some of you just hang around here until my man, Jim Snowden, gets up here with the truck. After Jim starts away with your war canoe then you can leave the rest to me, except cutting and hauling several loads of birch ...
— The High School Boys' Canoe Club • H. Irving Hancock

... and feelings have been interwoven with his own, will even a healthy man tell the tale of his hidden emotion; and mine is the deeper reticence of a habit which has ever held closely to the recipe of fernseed. To entrust a confidence to one of unproven sympathy, is to risk a profitless embarrassment. It has been most truly said that both parties to such impulsive avowals, whenever they afterwards meet, must feel a constraint as ...
— Apologia Diffidentis • W. Compton Leith

... doctrine was something so extraordinary, that it was worth investigating. Uraso saw the embarrassment in the mind of the Chief, and after speaking a ...
— The Wonder Island Boys: Treasures of the Island • Roger Thompson Finlay

... privilege. Mr. Disraeli, then leader, did his best to get out of the difficulty. Mr. Lewis, in full flush with the white waistcoat, was inexorable. The printers were ordered to appear. They obeyed the summons, and the House finding itself in a position of ludicrous embarrassment, they were privily entreated to withdraw, and, above all, to be so good as to say nothing more ...
— The Strand Magazine, Volume V, Issue 29, May 1893 - An Illustrated Monthly • Various

... Reno who opened her door to me in the deepening twilight. At the first glimpse of her kindly face I took my cue. I became a sweet, innocent, unfortunate lad. I couldn't speak. I opened my mouth and closed it again. Never in my life before had I asked any one for food. My embarrassment was painful, extreme. I was ashamed. I, who looked upon begging as a delightful whimsicality, thumbed myself over into a true son of Mrs. Grundy, burdened with all her bourgeois morality. Only the harsh pangs of the belly-need could compel me to do so degraded ...
— The Road • Jack London

... honour to his country, that Rome and other ambitious towns might covet this imaginary glory, that every geographer, every narrator of voyages, arbitrarily choosing his own meridian, would engender confusion or at least embarrassment in the mind of ...
— Celebrated Travels and Travellers - Part 2. The Great Navigators of the Eighteenth Century • Jules Verne

... Debates on Colonial Taxation..... Instability of the Cabinet..... Attempts to form a new Administration..... Opposition to the Stamp Duties in America..... Embarrassment of Ministers and Meeting of Parliament..... Sentiments of the Americans on the Declaratory Act..... The Dissolution of the Rockingham Cabinet..... Decline of Lord Chatham's Popularity..... Meeting of Parliament..... East India Question..... American Taxation..... Changes in the Ministry..... Proceedings ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... be that this defect is not constitutional, but a result of lifelong absence of mind and indolent and inadequate observation. Once or twice in my life it has been an embarrassment to me. Twenty years ago, in the days of Susy's Biography of Me, there was a dispute one morning at the breakfast-table about the color of a neighbor's eyes. I was asked for a verdict, but had to confess that if that valued neighbor and old friend had eyes I was not sure that I ...
— Chapters from My Autobiography • Mark Twain

... Mr. Carleton; then Mr. Stackpole. Then Mr. Thorn, in expectation of whom Fleda's breath had been coming and going painfully all the evening. She could not meet him without a strange mixture of embarrassment and confusion with the gratitude she wished to express, an embarrassment not at all lessened by the air of happy confidence with which he came forward to her. It carried an intimation that almost took ...
— Queechy • Susan Warner

... keep in mind the orders he had received on the part of the king of Poland respecting me, and the promises he had made to Pamartin; and I promised to make a present of a sword to the interpreter if he succeeded to extricate me from my embarrassment. The interpreter reported my fears and wishes to the ambassador, who succeeded, after drinking with the Tartars, in persuading them that I was of Genoa; and, by means of a present of fifteen ducats, he obtained permission for me to go direct ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. II • Robert Kerr

... force, had discovered the Russians short of ammunition and of artillery, and had driven the forces of the Tsar back towards Warsaw and other cities. Yes, Germany had gained much territory, and had lost many, many lives. Yet, see what now faced her; not victory, but embarrassment on every side: a trench-line running from north to south in Russia—a trench-line against which her weakened battalions had battered in vain, a line held by the forces of the Tsar, even though short of ammunition, so securely that Germany could not advance; and on the west another trench-line, ...
— With Joffre at Verdun - A Story of the Western Front • F. S. Brereton

... General had seen too much of life and of war to be surprised at anything; perhaps he was sorry for the embarrassment of his young lieutenant, and wished to make things easier for him; however it was, he apparently found it the most natural thing in the world for a young lady and her maid to be wandering in the wilderness in search of the Cuban army. The first thing, he ...
— Rita • Laura E. Richards

... skill and strength of a bare-footed boy of five; but I assured him I was a veteran at the business. He finally got in very gingerly, and sat down flat on the bottom. All the way over he kept wondering at and praising my work until I was ready to melt with mingled embarrassment and delight. At the shore he asked me unctuously how much he should pay. "Oh, nothing," I said. "But let me pay you. I'd be glad to," said he. "Oh, no, we never take pay," I replied, and dug my toes into the sand, not knowing how to get out of the scrape, yet well pleased at his high ...
— Journeys Through Bookland, Vol. 5 • Charles Sylvester

... said she. Then, as Lydia, pink with embarrassment and disapproval, made no sign, she added ...
— The Prisoner • Alice Brown

... greater importance - in the joy-sphere I can pray without shame or embarrassment. Then I pour out my whole heart - I who was never a good speaker - in lucid, fervent, flowing ...
— The Bride of Dreams • Frederik van Eeden

... thrill of joy at finding him conversing with her as his 'own;' it overcame her embarrassment and alarm, and wishes he would not choose ...
— The Heir of Redclyffe • Charlotte M. Yonge

... embarrassment in appointing a receiver, and vouched that these two Texans were good for any reasonable sum. The buffalo hunters approved, apologizing to Sponsilier, as he pulled on his boot, for questioning his financial standing, and swearing allegiance in every breath. An hour's time was granted in which ...
— The Outlet • Andy Adams

... Conde was still pending, a new anxiety added to the embarrassment of the Regent. The Swiss levies were about to be raised; but suspicions of the loyalty of the Duc de Rohan, who was colonel-general of this force, rendered her unwilling to confide so important a body of troops ...
— The Life of Marie de Medicis, Vol. 2 (of 3) • Julia Pardoe

... of proposing for your sister. Thank God," he added vigorously, "I waited! Well, I didn't; although, to be completely honest, I knew that it came to be expected. I could see the surprise in your father's face. It occurred to me afterward that if I had brought Gheta any embarrassment I'd like to do something in a small way, a sort of acknowledgment. And to-day I saw this," he held out the package; "it was pretty and I bought it for her at once. But now, when the moment arrives, I hesitate to give it to her. Gheta has grown so—so formal that I'm ...
— The Happy End • Joseph Hergesheimer

... with some little embarrassment that Mrs. K. and I seated ourselves. Sixteen young men came into the room; after the first glance at us there was not another look, and the lecture went on. Professor Peirce had filled the blackboard ...
— Maria Mitchell: Life, Letters, and Journals • Maria Mitchell

... consciousness, like a pair of children venturing together into a dark room. From the first moment when they see each other, with a pang of curiosity, through stage after stage of growing pleasure and embarrassment, they can read the expression of their own trouble in each other's eyes. There is here no declaration properly so called; the feeling is so plainly shared, that as soon as the man knows what it is in his own heart, he is sure of what it is ...
— Virginibus Puerisque • Robert Louis Stevenson

... Roberts, in extreme embarrassment: "Yes, yes, certainly; I shall be very glad to explain, if you'll just step here to the corner. We're ...
— The Albany Depot - A Farce • W. D. Howells

... themselves a nuisance by advocating ideas of justice in favour of the blacks? General Botha confessed last September that the South African Government tried to, but could not, borrow more than 2,000,000 Pounds; that the Imperial Government had come to the rescue and "helped the Union out of its embarrassment with a loan of 7,000,000 Pounds" of British money. When from his seat in the Union House of Assembly the Prime Minister announced this failure, why did not these secessionists come forward and display their "paddling" capacity? What has suddenly ...
— Native Life in South Africa, Before and Since • Solomon Tshekisho Plaatje

... instant only had I any opportunity of addressing her, and then there was such an evident embarrassment in her manner that I readily perceived how she felt circumstanced, and that the sense of gratitude to one whose further advances she might have feared, rendered her constrained and awkward. "Too true," said I, "she avoids me. My being ...
— Charles O'Malley, The Irish Dragoon, Volume 1 (of 2) • Charles Lever

... the embarrassment of missionaries in regard to their children, a thought something like this is apt to arise: missionaries are by profession a class of self-denying persons, and this trial is only in consistency with the life they have chosen. Now, where ...
— Thoughts on Missions • Sheldon Dibble

... officers were armed, not, as they had originally given him to understand, with fowling pieces, but with (at the present close quarters at least) far more efficient weapons—pistols. He was relieved from his embarrassment by ...
— The Canadian Brothers - or The Prophecy Fulfilled • John Richardson

... our knowledge. Expression is thus the great clarification agency and the test of knowledge. Before leaving this discussion, it might be well to remark upon one phase of expression that is sometimes a source of difficulty. This is the embarrassment incident to some forms of expression, notably oral. Many people are deterred from utilizing this form of expression because of shyness and embarrassment in the presence of others. If you have this difficulty in such ...
— How to Use Your Mind • Harry D. Kitson

... occupied private apartments at a boarding-house at Malvern. Privacy was refreshing, but, alas! its duration was doomed to be short. A young officer who had witnessed the embarrassment of "the stranger" at Tewksbury, recognised the sufferer at Malvern, and knowing his nervous antipathy to being noticed, he wickedly resolved to make him the lion ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 14, - Issue 389, September 12, 1829 • Various

... for the presence of those mischievous confederates, Nature and Opportunity. In the half-obscurity of the storm she could not help turning her mischievous eyes on his. But she was perhaps surprised to find them luminous, soft, and, as it seemed to her at that moment, grave beyond the occasion. An embarrassment utterly new and singular seized upon her; and when, as she half feared yet half expected, he bent down and pressed his lips to hers, she was for a moment powerless. But in the next instant she boxed his ears sharply, and vanished in the darkness. When Mr. Blossom opened the door to the baron ...
— Thankful Blossom • Bret Harte

... right word should be used at the right time—and at that time only. Silence is oftentimes golden. Nevertheless there are occasions for us to speak. Frequent occasions. To be inarticulate then may mean only embarrassment. It may—some day it will—mean suffering and failure. That we may make the most of the important occasions sure to come, we must have our instruments ready. Those instruments are words. He who ...
— The Century Vocabulary Builder • Creever & Bachelor

... appeared thoughtful, and for a moment presented an aspect of embarrassment, in strange contrast to his previous looks. He replied ...
— Wood Rangers - The Trappers of Sonora • Mayne Reid

... but it is more than doubtful. Rapid changes of plan, shifting and uncertain movements, may lead to wonderful successes when but a small body of troops have to be set in motion, but would cause endless confusion and embarrassment with a large army, which can only move in accordance with settled plans ...
— The Bravest of the Brave - or, with Peterborough in Spain • G. A. Henty

... He checked his horse an instant, as though by an impulse; for my father, though I honored him, was a weak man, in whom no purpose was steadfast. I saw the wavering in his face and the uncertainty of his big pale eyes; and then, half- nodding to me as though in an embarrassment, he pushed on and entered the town. I went down and ...
— Vrouw Grobelaar and Her Leading Cases - Seventeen Short Stories • Perceval Gibbon

... seemed that she had won. Then, with no sign of anxiety or embarrassment she bent her head slightly, slipped the coif back from her hair with one hand and lifted the veil with the other, sweeping them both away from her head with that characteristic toss that women employ on such occasions. Then she raised her face and ...
— Louisiana Lou • William West Winter

... and secured his preservation in a still more remarkable way. Gaius was incensed against him (if for no other reason) because in the reign of Tiberius he had accused a woman who was related to the emperor's mother Agrippina. Later the woman had met Afer and as she saw that out of embarrassment he stood aside from her path she called to him and said (referring to the matter): "Never mind, Domitius: it wasn't you, but Agamemnon, that caused me these troubles." [13] Just about this time Afer had set up an image of the emperor and had placed upon ...
— Dio's Rome, Vol. 4 • Cassius Dio

... in exchange of formal social greetings, Oswald feels a slight tremor of embarrassment upon his presentation to this beautiful blushing girl. Such mixture of childish curiosity, impulsive girlish candor, and unconscious grace, with hesitating modesty, womanly dignity, and restraints of good breeding, all modulated by eye and accent, blending ...
— Oswald Langdon - or, Pierre and Paul Lanier. A Romance of 1894-1898 • Carson Jay Lee

... door had closed on the Royal Dragon, King Terribus turned again to Prince Marvel, while his crimson face glowed with embarrassment, and his front eye rolled with baffled rage as he thought how vain had been all his efforts to kill this ...
— The Enchanted Island of Yew • L. Frank Baum

... He glanced towards the divan set against the wall, by the side of which he was standing. Mr. Grex was seated there, only a few feet away, smoking a cigarette. Their eyes met and Richard was conscious of a sudden embarrassment. He felt like a detected thief, and he acted at that moment as he often did—entirely on impulse. He leaned down and resolutely addressed ...
— Mr. Grex of Monte Carlo • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... Sir John Byron the Little, being, on this occasion, made a knight of the Bath. There is a letter to this personage, preserved in Lodge's Illustrations, from which it appears, that notwithstanding all these apparent indications of prosperity, the inroads of pecuniary embarrassment had already begun to be experienced by this ancient house. After counselling the new heir as to the best mode of getting free of his debts, "I do therefore advise you," continues the writer,[8] "that so soon as you have, in such ...
— Life of Lord Byron, Vol. I. (of VI.) - With his Letters and Journals. • Thomas Moore

... for a moment because she saw him flushing with embarrassment. Yet she couldn't apologize, and, anyway, an apology would avail nothing. If he thought her unwomanly because she talked about her woman's life,—the very life to which he was inviting her,—nothing she could say would change his mind. It wasn't a case for argument. ...
— The Precipice • Elia Wilkinson Peattie

... Patty, without a trace of self-consciousness or embarrassment. "I like you better than lots of these ...
— Patty's Summer Days • Carolyn Wells



Words linked to "Embarrassment" :   humiliation, emotional state, redundance, uncomfortableness, inordinateness, discombobulation, excessiveness, embarrass, discomposure, chagrin, trouble, discomfiture, shamefacedness, sheepishness, disconcertment, plethora, abashment, shame, uneasiness, bashfulness, redundancy, excess, spirit, disembarrassment, mortification, disconcertion, self-consciousness, confusion



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