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Pretence   Listen
Pretence

noun
1.
A false or unsupportable quality.  Synonyms: pretense, pretension.
2.
An artful or simulated semblance.  Synonyms: guise, pretense, pretext.
3.
Pretending with intention to deceive.  Synonyms: dissembling, feigning, pretense.
4.
Imaginative intellectual play.  Synonyms: make-believe, pretense.
5.
The act of giving a false appearance.  Synonyms: feigning, pretending, pretense, simulation.



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"Pretence" Quotes from Famous Books



... effort to suppress vivisection"; I dare not so honour my mere wishes and prayers as to put them for a moment beside your noble acts; but, this I know, I would rather submit to the worst of the deaths, so far as pain goes, than have a single dog or cat tortured on the pretence of sparing me a twinge or two. I return the paper, because I shall be probably shut up here for the next week or more, and prevented from seeing my friends: whoever would refuse to sign would certainly not ...
— Great Testimony - against scientific cruelty • Stephen Coleridge

... Percival is most ungentlemanly; but I wont be protected. I'll not have my affairs interfered with by men on pretence of protecting me. I'm not your baby. If I interfered between you and a woman, you would soon tell me ...
— Misalliance • George Bernard Shaw

... Dom Galors is galloping after Isoult, let us turn to that unconscious lady who hides her limbs in a pair of ragged breeches, and her bloom under the grime of coal-dust. Her cloud of hair, long now and lustrous, out of all measure to her pretence, she was accustomed to shorten by doubling it under her cap. An odd fancy had taken her which prevented a second shearing. If Prosper loved her she dared not go unlovely any more. Her hair curtained her when she bathed in the brook and the sun. Beyond doubt it was beautiful; it was Prosper's; ...
— The Forest Lovers • Maurice Hewlett

... him as a lunatic. I submit that before we extol or abuse, our first duty is to understand. And we can no longer evade that duty. We cannot afford any longer to ignore or dismiss the most powerful force in Continental literature, on the vain pretence that the author was mad, as if the greatest French thinker of the eighteenth century, Rousseau, and the greatest thinker of the nineteenth century, Auguste Comte, had not fallen victims to the ...
— German Problems and Personalities • Charles Sarolea

... you must on no pretence Make the first observation. Wait for the Victim to commence: No Ghost of any common sense Begins ...
— Phantasmagoria and Other Poems • Lewis Carroll

... arrived at the Cape Verde Islands. Having procured leave to land on Mayo Island, on the pretence of being an honest merchant in need of provisions, particularly of beef and goats, Bond and his crew seized and carried away some of the principal inhabitants. A year later John Cooke and Cowley arrived at Mayo in the Revenge, ...
— The Pirates' Who's Who - Giving Particulars Of The Lives and Deaths Of The Pirates And Buccaneers • Philip Gosse

... the house for the best part of an hour, making pretence to play with Effie. Then her anxiety got the better of her; she put on her hat and started, leaving Effie in ...
— Beatrice • H. Rider Haggard

... be considered one and the same question. At a meeting of Presbyterian ministers in Philadelphia, it was pertinently asked, "Have two men chosen to represent a poor English borough that has sold its votes to the highest bidder any pretence to say that they represent Virginia or Pennsylvania? And have four hundred such fellows a right to take our liberties?" In Parliament, on the other hand, as well as at London dinner tables, and in newspapers and pamphlets, it was repeatedly urged that the Americans need not make ...
— The War of Independence • John Fiske

... the deviations he took into narrow and remarkably gay by-streets, he plainly thought that this newspaper hunt was a ruse for seeing Alexandria by night. All this was very interesting all the same. I rubbed shoulders with many an Egyptian "nut" who made no pretence about his errand to this questionable part of the town. The many streets I passed through, and I must have penetrated about three miles into the town, seemed very familiar to me, they were so very ...
— The Incomparable 29th and the "River Clyde" • George Davidson

... everything in train, the Peishwa had left Scindia's camp before Nana's arrival there; and had summoned a dozen of the latter's adherents, under the pretence that he desired to see them on a matter of business. Wholly unsuspicious of treachery, they rode out at once; and each, on his arrival, was seized and thrown into ...
— At the Point of the Bayonet - A Tale of the Mahratta War • G. A. Henty

... manifested in seven ways in all acts and who, on that account, is attached to that aggregate of three?[1703] What indications of Emancipation exist in him who fails to cast an equal eye on the agreeable, on the weak, and the strong? Unworthy as thou art of it, thy pretence of Emancipation should be put down by thy counsellers! This thy endeavour to attain to Emancipation (when thou hast so many faults) is like the use of medicine by a patient who indulges in all kinds of forbidden food and practices. O chastiser of foes, reflecting upon ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 3 - Books 8, 9, 10, 11 and 12 • Unknown

... abridge the powers of the Great Captain by recalling half the troops in his service, notwithstanding the unsettled state of the kingdom. [10] He then took the decisive step of ordering his return to Castile, on pretence of employing him in affairs of great importance at home. To allure him more effectually, he solemnly pledged himself by an oath to transfer to him, on his landing in Spain, the grandmastership of St. Jago, with all its princely dependencies and emoluments, the noblest gift in the possession ...
— The History of the Reign of Ferdinand and Isabella The Catholic, V3 • William H. Prescott

... head to foot, rapid as an instantaneous exposure. "Tramps" were a permanent bugbear to the ladies of Cullerne, and a proper dread of such miscreants had been instilled into Anastasia Joliffe by her aunt. It was, moreover, a standing rule of the house that no strange men were to be admitted on any pretence, unless there was some man-lodger at home, to grapple with them if occasion arose. But the glance was sufficient to confirm her first verdict—he was a gentleman; there surely could not be such things as gentlemen-tramps. So she answered "Oh, certainly," and showed him into ...
— The Nebuly Coat • John Meade Falkner

... the meeting in the Toland library, when in one stunning flash he saw her as she was: beautiful, dignified, and charming, a woman to whom all eyes turned naturally and admiringly, grave, sweet, and wise in a world full of pretence and ignorance, ...
— The Story Of Julia Page - Works of Kathleen Norris, Volume V. • Kathleen Norris

... sweet Queen, and to sit up till midnight, in order to undress the sweet Queen. The indisposition of the handmaid could not, and did not, escape the notice of her royal mistress. But the established doctrine of the Court was, that all sickness was to be considered as a pretence until it proved fatal. The only way in which the invalid could clear herself from the suspicion of malingering, as it is called in the army, was to go on lacing and unlacing, till she fell down dead at the royal feet. "This," Miss Burney wrote, when she was suffering ...
— Critical and Historical Essays, Volume III (of 3) • Thomas Babington Macaulay

... thorough examination of the case and comparison of remedies made before administering them. The overseer must record in the prescription book every dose of medicine administered." Weston said he would never grudge a doctor's bill, however large; but he was anxious to prevent idleness under pretence of illness. "Nothing," said he, "is so subversive of discipline, or so unjust, as to allow people to sham, for this causes the well-disposed to do the ...
— American Negro Slavery - A Survey of the Supply, Employment and Control of Negro Labor as Determined by the Plantation Regime • Ulrich Bonnell Phillips

... The repute it obtaineth is in all respects unjust. So would it appear, not only were the cause to be decided in a court of morality, because it consists not with virtue and wisdom; but even before any competent judges of wit itself. For he overthrows his own pretence, and cannot reasonably claim any interest in wit, who doth thus behave himself: he prejudgeth himself to want wit, who cannot descry fit matter to divert himself or others: he discovereth a great straitness and sterility of good invention, who cannot in all the wide field of things find ...
— Sermons on Evil-Speaking • Isaac Barrow

... fashion be violated by her? Must we not fear that animal impulse will control her actions? I recommend no courtly airs, no studying of gesture, or look. But I must think that, simplicity, freedom from pretence and affectation, modesty, self-possession, escaping both reserve and boldness, and a perfectly frank, truth-speaking manner, are deserving the culture of every female, who seeks the true adorning, and who would ...
— The Young Maiden • A. B. (Artemas Bowers) Muzzey

... who was amused with every new thing he saw, began to follow the fisherman, and, that he should not forget his lesson, continued to repeat, "Lentils, in the name of the Prophet!" Suddenly the fisherman made a pretence of spreading his net, in order to wring and dry it, and having folded in his hand the rope to which it was fastened, he took hold of the simpleton and struck him some furious blows with it, saying, "Vile sorcerer! ...
— The Book of Noodles - Stories Of Simpletons; Or, Fools And Their Follies • W. A. Clouston

... absolutely all that I as yet knew in favour of this Mrs. Lascelles; but they were enough to cause me irritation. I wished to be honest with somebody; let me at least be honestly inimical to her. I took out my cigarette-case, and when about to help myself, handed it, with a vile pretence at impulse, to Mrs. ...
— No Hero • E.W. Hornung

... with a murmured word of thanks. He took his place, facing her, very pale, but absolutely his own master. He served her silently, and she made some pretence of eating, keeping her head bent, feeding Columbus surreptitiously as he ...
— The Obstacle Race • Ethel M. Dell

... the Brazilians may imitate the example of those fellows at Bahia, and attempt to attack you," said Jack to Bevan; "you will therefore keep a good lookout, and allow no boat to approach under any pretence whatever. Order them to keep off, and fire a musket-shot or two ahead of them, as a sign that you are in earnest. If they still come on, fire the carronades into them, and drive them back ...
— The Three Lieutenants • W.H.G. Kingston

... gave; Sigurd in fight was quick and brave; Inge loved well the war-alarm; Magnus to save his land from harm. No country boasts a nobler race The battle-field, or Thing, to grace. Four brothers of such high pretence The sun ne'er shone upon ...
— Heimskringla - The Chronicle of the Kings of Norway • Snorri Sturluson

... pretence which, though it may deceive yourselves, certainly does not deceive Him from whom no secrets are hid. If you cannot forsake the service of Mammon, if you really are so tightly bound by his golden chains to the things of this world ...
— The Missionary • George Griffith

... and other islands facing towards the continent piracy also sprang up and flourished apace. It was indeed an era of piracy all over the world. The Portuguese, Spanish, and Dutch traders of this period were almost always ready to turn an honest penny by seizing an unfortunate vessel under the pretence that it was a pirate. The whole coast of China, according to the accounts of Pinto, swarmed with both European and Asiatic craft, which were either traders or pirates, according to circumstances. Under this state of things, and with the pressure of lawlessness and want behind them, it was ...
— Japan • David Murray

... here?" he asked, but Crabbe only moved uneasily in his chair, reaching sideways in a pretence of arranging boxes underneath the improvised counter, his hands shaking so that the goods ...
— Ringfield - A Novel • Susie Frances Harrison

... pretentious, the assured, not to say bumptious air so sedulously copied from the deportment of his employer. Enter a new and completely transformed Alfred Burton, an inoffensive-looking young man in a neat gray suit, a lilac-colored tie of delicate shade, a flannel shirt with no pretence at cuffs, but with a spotless turned down collar, a soft Homburg hat, a clean-shaven lip. With a new sense of self-respect and an immense feeling of relief, Burton, after a few moments' hesitation, directed his footsteps ...
— The Double Life Of Mr. Alfred Burton • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... nineteenth century, when there was so little art and so much talk about it, there was a theory that art and imaginative literature ought to deal with contemporary life; but they never did so; for, if there was any pretence of it, the author always took care . . . to disguise, or exaggerate, or idealise, and in some way or another make it strange; so that, for all the verisimilitude there was, he might just as well have dealt with the times ...
— A History of English Romanticism in the Nineteenth Century • Henry A. Beers

... at least in the matter of love. She wishes to be as free to seek a man as he is to seek her—to love him as freely and frankly as he does her. Why should she withhold her lips after her heart has surrendered? Why should she keep the pretence of coyness long after she has ...
— The Spinster Book • Myrtle Reed

... filthy," and added in English, "We cannot sleep with the Esquimaux, nor eat out of their dirty vessels. We have been accustomed to live as cleanly as the Europeans." The brethren, who saw that they were afraid of the great number of the Esquimaux, but wished to conceal their terror under the pretence of disgust at their filthiness, showed them into one of their own workshops, where beds were ...
— The Moravians in Labrador • Anonymous

... who by such an insignificant display of coolness, had gained so great an advantage over him in the eyes of the ladies, and made up his opinion that in every word he said about the horse of the Rajah of Rumtool he was romancing—and that although there had been no slightest pretence to personal prowess in the narrative. Our judgment is always too much at the mercy of our likes and dislikes. He did indeed mention himself, but only to say that once in the street of a village he saw the horse at some distance with ...
— Weighed and Wanting • George MacDonald

... "I will make no pretence of misunderstanding you. The situation is too serious, the honour which you do me too great; only, I am not free to accept that honour. The words which I uttered were meant for your cousin Dorothy. I expected ...
— Room Number 3 - and Other Detective Stories • Anna Katharine Green

... mercantile probity of his European character, while he retains its cold-blooded phlegm and avaricious selfishness. Of this the Amboyna government gave a notable proof. About the 11th of Feb. 1622, old stile, under pretence of a plot laid between the English of the factory and some Japanese soldiers to seize the castle, the former were arrested by the Dutch, and subjected to the most horrible tortures, to extort confession ...
— The Works of John Dryden, Volume 5 (of 18) - Amboyna; The state of Innocence; Aureng-Zebe; All for Love • John Dryden

... she turned to him with a little cry of surprise, how much natural and how much assumed—for she had heard him enter—it would have been hard to say. She was a woman, and therefore the daughter of pretence even when most real. He caught her by both arms as she shyly but eagerly came to him. "Good girl, good little girl," he said. He looked round him. "Well, I've never seen our lodge look nicer than it does to-night; and the fire, and the pot on the fire, and the smell of the pine-cones, ...
— Northern Lights • Gilbert Parker

... And put in Marcellus Cock Comander of said Ship Salamander, and Paul Sherrot Leift. and Cloys Peterson Mate or Pylot of said ship, to Carry the Said Ship home to Quinborough to the said Duke, But the said Marcellus Cock, under pretence of want of Proviscions and Leakenes of said Ship, brought her into Piscatuqua and there stayed about 3 months whiling away the time, and Repayring the ship, And while there so cruelly beate twelve of the ships Company, at the Capston and ...
— Privateering and Piracy in the Colonial Period - Illustrative Documents • Various

... said that the Prince, furiously jealous of power, had offered the "Constitution" merely as a pretence to Europe that he was up-to-date, and had so arranged as to retain autocracy; that he purposely suppressed knowledge, kept out literature, and encouraged only the narrowest education in order to retain power and keep ...
— Twenty Years Of Balkan Tangle • Durham M. Edith

... quote Sophocles, but she said to herself, 'Only this little bit of pretence and vanity, and then I will be quite good, and make myself quite safe ...
— Scenes of Clerical Life • George Eliot

... what we ponder'd Or made pretence to talk, As, her hand within mine, we wander'd Tow'rd the pool by the limetree walk, While the dew fell in showers from the passion flowers And the blush-rose bent ...
— A Nonsense Anthology • Collected by Carolyn Wells

... lighted in the dusk of evening, there were depressing hints of reproaches for that I had put the poor old kitchen at home so far away; and in the dead of night, the footsteps of some incapable impostor of a porter mooning about Barnard's Inn, under pretence of watching it, fell hollow on ...
— Great Expectations • Charles Dickens

... could not refuse me some marks of real or of pretended affection, unless she wished to make a show of a modesty which certainly did not belong to her, and, knowing that her modesty would only be all pretence, I was determined not to be a mere toy in ...
— The Memoires of Casanova, Complete • Jacques Casanova de Seingalt

... social passion has she?—show it me!—where is it? She wants petty, immediate POWER, she wants the illusion that she is a great woman, that is all. In her soul she's a devilish unbeliever, common as dirt. That's what she is at the bottom. And all the rest is pretence—but you love it. You love the sham spirituality, it's your food. And why? Because of the dirt underneath. Do you think I don't know the foulness of your sex life—and her's?—I do. And it's that foulness you want, you liar. ...
— Women in Love • D. H. Lawrence

... in April, 1685, Claverhouse was left out of the new commission of privy council, as being too favourable to the fanatics. The pretence was his having married into the presbyterian family of lord Dundonald. An act of council was also past, regulating the payment of quarters, which is stated by Fountainhall to have been done in odium of Claverhouse, ...
— Minstrelsy of the Scottish Border, Vol. II (of 3) • Walter Scott

... like strangers about this and that, making talk to hide our thoughts. We make a pretence of busying ourselves about whatever will help us to keep ...
— The Idler Magazine, Volume III., July 1893 - An Illustrated Monthly • Various

... mercenary hearts. 30 For settlements the lawyer's fee'd; Is my hand witness to the deed? If they like cat and dog agree, Go, rail at Plutus, not at me.' Plutus appeared, and said, ''Tis true, In marriage gold is all their view: They seek not beauty, wit, or sense; And love is seldom the pretence. All offer incense at my shrine, And I alone the bargain sign. 40 How can Belinda blame her fate? She only asked a great estate. Doris was rich enough, 'tis true; Her lord must give her title too: And every man, or rich or poor, A fortune asks, and asks no more.' Av'rice, ...
— The Poetical Works of Addison; Gay's Fables; and Somerville's Chase • Joseph Addison, John Gay, William Sommerville

... when I observed the independent way in which he went rolling along the deck, evidently caring for no one, and heard the tone of his voice, I was certain that he was the fellow I had supposed; so also was Nettleship, who said that he would have a talk with him some day, under pretence of learning what ships he had served aboard. He told me afterwards that he had done so, but that Patchett didn't allude to his journey in the coach. His only answer when he asked him if he knew anything ...
— Paddy Finn • W. H. G. Kingston

... artfully put, soon elicited from the savage the information that the travellers were now in the country belonging to M'Bongwele, a fierce, cruel, and jealous despot, so suspicious of foreigners that the most stringent orders were in force to allow none such to cross his borders upon any pretence whatever. This king had been duly apprised, through the medium of the curious voice-telegraphic mode of communication already described, of the mysterious arrival in his dominions on the day previous; and had been so greatly disconcerted ...
— The Log of the Flying Fish - A Story of Aerial and Submarine Peril and Adventure • Harry Collingwood

... book makes a showy pretence of orderliness and system, but it is only a pretence. I will not go so far as to say it is a harum-scarum jumble, for it is not that, but I think it fair to say it is at least jumbulacious in places. For instance, Articles III. and IV. set forth in much detail the qualifications ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... life went by for my aunt Leonie, always the same, in the gentle uniformity of what she called, with a pretence of deprecation but with a deep tenderness, her 'little jog-trot.' Respected by all and sundry, not merely in her own house, where every one of us, having learned the futility of recommending any healthier ...
— Swann's Way - (vol. 1 of Remembrance of Things Past) • Marcel Proust

... and Spenser, Ben Jonson and Bacon, and since then the spiritual outlook, like the material outlook, has widened to infinity. There is space in life now for a dozen ideals undreamed-of in the sixteenth century. Let us have done with this pretence of doglike humility; we, too, are men, and there is on earth no higher title, and in the universe nothing beyond our comprehending. It will be well for us to know Shakespeare and all his high qualities and do him reverence; ...
— The Man Shakespeare • Frank Harris

... of a horrible person, who would persist in following Min about under the false pretence that his name was on her card for several of the after-supper dances—an assertion I knew to be ridiculously unfounded; for, I had taken care to place my own name down for as many as Min would give me, and, all the latter ...
— She and I, Volume 2 - A Love Story. A Life History. • John Conroy Hutcheson

... Catholic, and the way to favour at Dresden was through Roman ecclesiastics. Probably the thought of a profession of the papal religion was not new to Winckelmann. At one time he had thought of begging his way to Rome, from cloister to cloister, under the pretence of a disposition to change his faith. In 1751, the papal nuncio, Archinto, was one of the visitors at Nothenitz. He suggested Rome as the fitting stage for Winckelmann's accomplishments, and held out the hope of a place in the Pope's library. Cardinal Passionei, charmed with Winckelmann's beautiful ...
— The Renaissance: Studies in Art and Poetry • Walter Horatio Pater

... the dinner period Dick allowed his glance to rove over to the turnback. Not once did he catch Haynes's eye, but that young man was making only a pretence ...
— Dick Prescott's Third Year at West Point - Standing Firm for Flag and Honor • H. Irving Hancock

... murmured something. She looked scared. She made an attempt to eat something, but it was a mere pretence. ...
— Red Pottage • Mary Cholmondeley

... channels of Christian organisation and activity, and blesses the valleys below. It is not for us to hurry the work of God, nor spasmodically to manufacture revivals. It is not for us, under the pretence of waiting for Him, to be cold and callous; but it is for us to question ourselves wherefore these things have come upon us, with lowly, penitent confession to turn to God, and ask Him to bless us. Oh, ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Isaiah and Jeremiah • Alexander Maclaren

... say that the light of the sun is a gratuitous gift, and that to repulse gratuitous gifts is to repulse riches under pretence of encouraging ...
— What Is Free Trade? - An Adaptation of Frederic Bastiat's "Sophismes Econimiques" - Designed for the American Reader • Frederic Bastiat

... no reply was attempted, and Imlac began to hope that their curiosity would subside; but next day Pekuah told him she had now found an honest pretence for a visit to the astronomer, for she would solicit permission to continue under him the studies in which she had been initiated by the Arab, and the Princess might go with her, either as a fellow-student, or because a woman could not decently come alone. "I am afraid," said Imlac, "that ...
— Rasselas, Prince of Abyssinia • Samuel Johnson

... her while she utterly ignored him and his subject. However, Thorpe was a good actor, and could play his part, and do it well, in spite of his audience. I sometimes fancied that he was less cheerful in those times than he seemed. In fact, I was ready to believe that he was in reality, as he was in pretence, seeking to win Helen's attention. Mr. Floyd looked at the matter in ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, December 1878 • Various

... first Latin Grammar. I felt keenly for the poor body-starved theory-burdened soul, and though I was under no delusion as to the assistance I got in my Latin, I could not make up my mind to get rid of him. This pretence of learning Latin lasted as long as I was at these lodgings. When on the eve of leaving them I offered to settle his dues he said piteously: "I have done nothing, and only wasted your time, I cannot accept any payment from you." It was with great difficulty that I ...
— My Reminiscences • Rabindranath Tagore

... come out from the shack and was seated on the threshold; even she was conscious of a certain elation, for she was humming to herself one of those endless, tuneless, barbaric Indian airs which only take on the pretence of music when they are assisted by the stamping of many feet, and the clapping of many hands. When Granger turned his head in her direction, she lowered her eyes, and her singing ceased. He had ...
— Murder Point - A Tale of Keewatin • Coningsby Dawson

... one house was never like the next, one hostess never resembled another; wealth itself was presented to her under innumerable aspects ranging all the way from that false modesty and smugness known as meekness, to fevered pretence, arrogance, and noisy aggressiveness. ...
— Athalie • Robert W. Chambers

... I presume, intend to deny that you attended your host Glennaquoich to a rendezvous, where, under a pretence of a general hunting match, most of the accomplices of his treason were assembled to ...
— Waverley, Or 'Tis Sixty Years Hence, Complete • Sir Walter Scott

... die!" They never lov'd the man, they swear; they know Nothing of all the matter, when, or how, By what accuser, for what cause, or why, By whose command or sentence he must die. But what needs this? the least pretence will hit, When princes fear, or hate a favourite. A large epistle stuff'd with idle fear, Vain dreams, and jealousies, directed here From Caprea does it; and thus ever die Subjects, when once they grow prodigious ...
— Poems of Henry Vaughan, Silurist, Volume II • Henry Vaughan

... prosperous arms, they made incursions from London, and laid waste the King's parks and palaces; and all the barons, who had hitherto carried the semblance of supporting the royal party, were glad of this pretence for openly joining a cause which they always had secretly favored. The King was left at Odiham, in Hampshire, with a poor retinue of only seven knights, and after trying several expedients to elude the blow, after offering to refer all differences to ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume VI. • Various

... said Arthur. 'Helen had light hair and eyes, a fat sort of face, and no pretence to be pretty—a downright sort of person, not what you would fancy John's taste. If any one else had compared you it would have been no compliment; but he told me you had reminded him of her from the first, and now your white cheeks and sick dress recalled ...
— Heartsease - or Brother's Wife • Charlotte M. Yonge

... Egyptian prince intended the ruin of this city of wicked Bedlamites, he could not have taken a more effectual method to do it than by such an ensnaring largess. The distribution of this bounty caused a quarrel; the majority set on foot an inquiry into the title of the citizens; and upon a vain pretence of illegitimacy, newly and occasionally set up, they deprived of their share of the royal donation no less than five thousand of their own body. They went further; they disfranchised them; and, ...
— The Works of the Right Honourable Edmund Burke, Vol. I. (of 12) • Edmund Burke

... must tell you, would spend hours together, she making pretence of teaching him French, although he was so possessed with a passion of love that he was nigh suffocated with it. She, upon her part, perceiving his emotions, responded with extreme good-nature and complacency, so that had our hero been older, and the voyage proved longer, he might have become ...
— Stolen Treasure • Howard Pyle

... curiosity, of surprise, of any sort of pronounced interest, began to arouse his distrust. But except for the felicitous pretence of deafness I had not tried to pretend anything. I had felt utterly incapable of playing the part of ignorance properly, and therefore was afraid to try. It is also certain that he had brought some ready-made suspicions with him, and ...
— 'Twixt Land & Sea • Joseph Conrad

... He made no pretence of enjoying life when he did not enjoy it. He disliked Mr Durfy, and therefore he flared up if Mr Durfy so much as looked at him. He liked young Gedge, and therefore it was impossible to leave the youngster to his fate ...
— Reginald Cruden - A Tale of City Life • Talbot Baines Reed

... Richard Cameron, of South Carolina, arrived in Washington and was placed in jail last night, charged with complicity in the murder of President Lincoln. It was discovered that Jeff Davis spent the night at his home in Piedmont, under the pretence of needing medical attention. Beyond all doubt, Booth, the assassin, merely acted under orders from the Arch Traitor. May the gallows have a rich ...
— The Clansman - An Historical Romance of the Ku Klux Klan • Thomas Dixon

... closet of the prime minister. He had brought himself to pray for his father's life, but now that that life was done, minutes were too precious to be lost. It was now useless to dally with the fact of the bishop's death—useless to lose perhaps everything for the pretence of a ...
— Barchester Towers • Anthony Trollope

... the same time he bade Camilla not to leave Lothario alone until he came back. In short he contrived to put so good a face on the reason, or the folly, of his absence that no one could have suspected it was a pretence. ...
— Don Quixote • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... that I could not overtake him, which made me think he took shelter under some bush, which he knew where to find, though I did not. Meanwhile, the coachman, who had sufficiently the outside of a man, excused himself from intermeddling under pretence that he durst not leave his horses, and so left me to shift for myself; and I was gone so far beyond my knowledge, that I understood not which way I was to go, till by halloing, and being halloed to again, I was directed ...
— The History of Thomas Ellwood Written by Himself • Thomas Ellwood

... low soft way, giving me a sidelong glance again, and then taking out his great knife and making a pretence of cutting his nails, for which task the knife was about ...
— To The West • George Manville Fenn

... know only desire. Stepan, she has dragged me through every degradation. I am a witness of her unfaithfulness. She gives herself to this Turk with hardly a pretence of concealment—I know it—I burn with rage, and I can do nothing. She returns to my arms and I forget everything. I am a most unhappy man and only death can release me, and yet I wish to live because I love her. Each day is fierce longing for her—each night away from ...
— The Price of Things • Elinor Glyn

... housework, for they've got young ones too little to carry with 'em, and maybe a whole family of 'em. Takin' in sewin' is their only resource. Well, ma'am, for ladies, well-to-do and rich, to get together, under pretence of good works and charity, and take away work from these poor women, by offerin' to do it cheaper, underbiddin' of 'em for jobs, which I've known the thing to be done, and then settin' over their ill-gotten ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 1, Issue 2, December, 1857 • Various

... happy for both sides the water if it had been adopted. The colonies, so united, would have been sufficiently strong to have defended themselves; there would then have been no need of troops from England; of course, the subsequent pretence for taxing America, and the bloody contest it occasioned, would have been avoided. But such mistakes are not new; history is full of the errors of ...
— The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin • Benjamin Franklin

... naked stars because one has not the price of a doss. The lad who steals a few pears from a wealthy railway corporation is a greater menace to society than the young brute who commits an unprovoked assault upon an old man over seventy years of age. While the young girl who takes a lodging under the pretence that she has work commits so dangerous an offence, that, were she not severely punished, she and her kind might bring the whole fabric of property clattering to the ground. Had she unholily tramped Piccadilly ...
— The People of the Abyss • Jack London

... accidents is, that the ground being harder than usual, the metal with which it is brought into contact is more severely tried than in ordinary circumstances. In order apparently to excuse certain railway companies, a pretence has been set up that iron and steel become brittle at a low temperature. This pretence, although put forth in defiance, not only of all we know, of the properties of materials, but also of the experience of everyday life, has yet obtained the credence ...
— Scientific American, Volume XXIV., No. 12, March 18, 1871 • Various

... his lieutenant familiar with the stage upon which he was destined to play his part of the plot, and especially to observe the persons and the habits of the two Medici princes. Furthermore, he was directed to seek a personal interview with Lorenzo, on the pretence of submitting suggestions, propounded by Count Girolamo, with respect to the acquisition ...
— The Tragedies of the Medici • Edgcumbe Staley

... gently, and led her downstairs, making her resume her place at the table, and taking his own again, as he made a pretence of going on with his breakfast; but before he had eaten his second mouthful there was a dull heavy ...
— The Adventures of Don Lavington - Nolens Volens • George Manville Fenn

... of St. Paul was indignant at these obstacles, and he expressed himself with great warmth to the other cardinals in presence of the Pope. "If you reject the prayers of this poor man, on the pretence that his rule is novel, and too austere, let us take care that we do not reject the Gospel itself; since the rule of which he solicits the approval, is in conformity with what the Gospel teaches; for, to say that Evangelical perfection, ...
— The Life and Legends of Saint Francis of Assisi • Father Candide Chalippe

... replied. "I was particularly careful not to arouse suspicions that I had noticed anything out of the common. But I knew perfectly well that I was just in time to save my diamonds. However, that has nothing to do with the question. The Countess came back very late, under the pretence that she required my services as her maid. She managed to drug me with some very powerful scent, I presume, with a view of using my room whilst I was unconscious, if any hitch took place. But you may be sure that these people are ...
— The Slave of Silence • Fred M. White

... terrible loneliness that surrounds every power and dominion. Just then a violent fit of coughing seized him. Far from receiving one single word—indifferent, and meaningless, it is true, but still containing, among well-bred people brought together by chance, at least some pretence of civil commiseration—he now heard hostile ejaculations and muttered complaints. Society there assembled disdained any pantomime on his account, perhaps because he had gauged ...
— The Magic Skin • Honore de Balzac

... putting in each fence and cross-roads. Those who would satisfy the national pride with something besides battle flags must give our people an objective as shining and splendid as war when it is most glittering, something Napoleonic, and with no outward pretence of excessive virtue. We want a substitute as dramatic internationally, yet world-winning, friend making. If America is to become the financial centre through no fault of her own, that fact must have a symbol other than guns on ...
— The Art Of The Moving Picture • Vachel Lindsay

... is knocked up and lamed. The Marabout has cheated Said all along out of his rides, under pretence of his having made him a pair of shoes. This Marabout is the cunningest, cruellest rogue I ever met with. But I must here relate a service which he rendered me of considerable importance. Nobody could pronounce, at any rate recollect, my name. Mohammed said to me one day, "Ingleez, we have many ...
— Travels in the Great Desert of Sahara, in the Years of 1845 and 1846 • James Richardson

... weakness that awakens more derisive contempt than a false assumption of superior knowledge. The vanity of young people frequently leads them into ludicrous positions, and sometimes even into serious difficulties, through a pretence of knowing things of which they are really ignorant. The experience of one of my young friends is a ...
— The Youth's Companion - Volume LII, Number 11, Thursday, March 13, 1879 • Various

... which stondithe vppon euell and wicked thinges broken / and haue vs all conioyned in that which is holy and goode. And therfore we do not allowe when mariages frendshippes and leagues are broken without necessitie / and vnder an vntrue pretence of religion. Agayn we do dissalowe thos which are kept againste the commaundement of Godd with playne hurte of true religion / and open denyinge of the faithe. All persons must bende themselues to peace and concorde so far as they ...
— A Treatise of the Cohabitation Of the Faithful with the Unfaithful • Peter Martyr

... "He was taken to the rear to keep him from his mistress, and, on pretence of losing his stirrups, got the men beside him to come close, when he spurred their horses, striking the men at the same time. He was round in a minute and galloping back upon the road. Half a dozen of us went in pursuit, when the shots ...
— The Brown Mask • Percy J. Brebner

... at that moment staring through the window of a hackney cabriolet, into which he had been ensnared on a false pretence of rats among the straw. Sooth to say, he was as unlike a lady's dog as dog might be; and in his gruff anxiety to get out, gave short yelps, and overbalancing himself by the intensity of his efforts, tumbled down into the straw, and then sprung up panting again, putting out ...
— Ten Girls from Dickens • Kate Dickinson Sweetser

... popular writer who had already warned us against the Prussians, had sought to preach among the populace a very Prussian fatalism, pivoted upon the importance of the charlatan Haeckel. The wrestle of the two great parties had long slackened into an embrace. The fact was faintly denied, and a pretence was still made that no pact: existed beyond a common patriotism. But the pretence failed altogether; for it was evident that the leaders on either side, so far from leading in divergent directions, were much closer to each other than to their own followers. ...
— The Crimes of England • G.K. Chesterton

... fell a whole tree, as has already been explained, to make a single spear shaft. As to the shield, the elaborate carving upon it corresponds closely with the prowess of the owner; and the more laurels he gains, the more intricate and elaborate becomes the carving on his shield. Honour prevents undue pretence. ...
— The Adventures of Louis de Rougemont - as told by Himself • Louis de Rougemont

... the limbs and features would not easily obey its messages. The figure, now beautiful, would perhaps be marred by the ungracious thickness, the piteous fleshiness that Time often adds assiduously to ageing bodies, as if with an ironic pretence of generously giving in one direction while taking away in another. Decay would be setting in, life becoming perpetual loss. The precious ...
— The Woman With The Fan • Robert Hichens

... publish all those calamities which decency to wretched relations used in compassion to suppress, I mean self-murder in particular. Mr. -Is was detailed at length; and to-day that of Lord - and -. The pretence is, in terrorem, like the absurd stake and highway of our ancestors; as if there were a precautionary potion for madness, or the stigma of a newspaper were more dreadful than death. Daily journalists, to be sure, are most respectable magistrates! Yes, much like the cobblers that Cromwell ...
— Letters of Horace Walpole, V4 • Horace Walpole

... diminish the king's authority in the parliament during the approaching session: but the commons, when assembled, found many other causes of complaint. Buckingham's conduct and character with some had afforded a reason, with others a pretence, for discontent against public measures but after his death there wanted not new reasons and new pretences for general dissatisfaction. Manwaring's pardon and promotion were taken notice of: Sibthorpe and Cosins, two clergymen, who, for like reasons, were no less obnoxious to the commons, ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.I., Part E. - From Charles I. to Cromwell • David Hume

... mummery!' cried Sergius, suddenly arousing from his spiritual stupor and bursting into a shrill laugh. 'Do we care to listen to your miserable dactyls? Is it not a standing jest through Rome that, for the past month, you have daily read your verses to one person after another, with the same wretched pretence of exclusive favoritism? And do we not know that no warrant has ever been given to you to recite a single line before the emperor, either in or out of the arena? We are here to revel, not to listen to ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol 6, No 5, November 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... his own single Opinion) and according to the just Rules of War, went on gradually to take their fortified Towns, and ruin their Defences on the Frontiers, that at last, he might have a sure and easie Conquest of the rest: This was one Pretence. The second was just the Reverse of this: For at a great Battle with the Tartarians, the Commander having resolved to attack the Enemy in their advantageous Camp, and having drawn up in Battalia his whole Army, he gives the Post of ...
— Atalantis Major • Daniel Defoe

... considered to be established principles. Then, too, his massive intellect made him wanting in pliability. 'He could not change front in presence of the enemy'; and rather despised the adaptations by which clever lawyers succeed in introducing new law under a pretence of applying old precedents. As I have already said, he was disgusted with the mere technicalities of the law, and the conversion of what ought to be a logical apparatus for the discovery of truth into an artificial system of elaborate and superfluous formalities. His great ...
— The Life of Sir James Fitzjames Stephen, Bart., K.C.S.I. - A Judge of the High Court of Justice • Sir Leslie Stephen

... apathetic resistance never came till later, after an obedient start. The days passed. The Bull had not been countermanded, although he was aware backstairs influence had been tried by the bankers of the community; it had not even been modified under the pretence of defining it, as was the manner of Popes with too rigorous Bulls. No, nothing could save ...
— Dreamers of the Ghetto • I. Zangwill

... it was—a miserable pretence. For heaven's sake, let's have this over and settle down. I only wish it were Carrie's wedding; then we might hope ...
— The Voice of the People • Ellen Glasgow

... through the portico, Yva leading us, and passed the fountain of Life-water, of which she cautioned us to drink no more at present, and to prevent him from doing so, dragged Tommy past it by his collar. Bickley, however, lingered under the pretence of making a further examination of the statue. As I had seen him emptying into his pocket the contents of a corked bottle of quinine tabloids which he always carried with him, I guessed very well that his object was to procure a sample of this water for future analysis. ...
— When the World Shook - Being an Account of the Great Adventure of Bastin, Bickley and Arbuthnot • H. Rider Haggard

... one of the nurses brought me a cup of coffee, and then I proceeded to dress as best I might. So clearly did that horrid little room imprint itself on my memory that I seem to see it as I write. The dusty bare boards, cracked and loose in places, had no pretence to any acquaintance with a scrubbing-brush, and very little with a broom. A rickety old chest of drawers stood in one corner, presumably filled with hospital necessaries, from the very strong smell of drugs emanating from it, and from the fact that ...
— South African Memories - Social, Warlike & Sporting From Diaries Written At The Time • Lady Sarah Wilson

... within my mansion while he was thus engaged, only requiring his occasional assistance at hearing the more advanced scholars. This seemed to promise a close of our dispute, alike satisfactory to all parties, and the first act of Paul was to draw on me for a round sum, under pretence that his wardrobe must be wholly refitted. To this I made no objection, though it certainly showed like vanity to purchase garments in the extremity of the mode, when not only great part of the defunct's habiliments were very fit for a twelvemonth's use, but as I ...
— Waverley Volume XII • Sir Walter Scott

... government. To-morrow, therefore—being the earliest possible day—it maybe well that the said declaration shall be made taking every necessary precaution that the public peace shall not be disturbed by individuals under any pretence. ...
— Narrative of Services in the Liberation of Chili, Peru and Brazil, - from Spanish and Portuguese Domination, Volume 2 • Thomas Cochrane, Tenth Earl of Dundonald

... no sense in it— It shows but useless spite! I have much to say: The French Ambassador, de Beauharnais, Has come, and sought the King. And next Murat, With thirty thousand men, half cavalry, Is closing in upon our doomed Madrid! I know not what he means, this Bonaparte; He makes pretence to gain us Portugal, But what want we with her? 'Tis like as not His aim's to noose us vassals all to him! The King will abdicate, and shortly too, As those will live to see who live not long.— We have saved ...
— The Dynasts - An Epic-Drama Of The War With Napoleon, In Three Parts, - Nineteen Acts, And One Hundred And Thirty Scenes • Thomas Hardy

... ceremonious chill, prevailed here no less than at the dinner-table. The guests kept apart in groups, the few ladies in a circle upon low chairs, the gentlemen standing or walking about with a pretence of serious conversation, but obviously engaged in attracting His Highness's attention. It was for His Highness that Landry the musician stood pensive by the chimney-piece, gazing upward with his inspired brow and his apostolic beard; for him that on the other side Delpech ...
— The Immortal - Or, One Of The "Forty." (L'immortel) - 1877 • Alphonse Daudet

... that there is nothing whatever objectionable in the cartridges of the 3rd Regiment Light Cavalry, and that they may be freely received and used as heretofore without in the slightest degree affecting any religious scruple of either a Hindu or Mussulman, and if any pretence contrary to that is urged, that it must be false.' This opinion, it must be remembered, was the opinion of Natives, not Europeans, and was given only sixteen days before the ...
— Forty-one years in India - From Subaltern To Commander-In-Chief • Frederick Sleigh Roberts

... such pretence he fled to what was real— Fair women's arms, laughter and love and pleasure, All the mad joy of life; whate'er he craved, He found was given ...
— Three Dramas - The Editor—The Bankrupt—The King • Bjornstjerne M. Bjornson

... resistance to England. Ties of blood, of religion, of interest were too strong. All the injustice done them by the King, all the oppression of the Navigation Acts, could not make them forget that they were Englishmen. So he found it necessary to deceive them with a pretence of loyalty. He himself took the oath of allegiance and supremacy, and he imposed it upon all his followers. His commands were issued in the King's name. He even went to the absurd extremity of declaring it for ...
— Virginia under the Stuarts 1607-1688 • Thomas J. Wertenbaker

... poetic hour, And insolently thrice the slighted maid Dared to suspend her unregarded aid; Then with that grief we form in spirits divine, Pleads for her own neglect, and thus reproaches mine. Once highly honoured! false is the pretence You make to truth, retreat, and innocence! Who, to pollute my shades, bring'st with thee down The most ungenerous vices of the town; Ne'er sprung a youth from out this isle before I once esteem'd, and loved, and favour'd ...
— The Poems of Jonathan Swift, D.D., Volume I (of 2) • Jonathan Swift

... history of the states of consciousness which accompany some of their actions; and with the relation of behaviour to experience. We will endeavour to follow Darwin in his modesty and candour in making no pretence to give ultimate explanations. But we must note one of the implications of this self-denying ordinance of science. Development and evolution imply continuity. For Darwin and his followers the continuity is organic ...
— Evolution in Modern Thought • Ernst Haeckel

... of it, my dear. I do not scruple to advise you, because I am older than you, and have experience of the world." This, I think, taken in the ordinary sense of the words, was a boast on the part of Lady Lufton, for which but little true pretence existed. Lady Lufton's experience of the world at large was not perhaps extensive. Nevertheless she knew what one woman might offer to another, and what one woman might receive from another. "You would be better over with me, my dear, than you could be elsewhere. You will not misunderstand me if ...
— The Last Chronicle of Barset • Anthony Trollope

... Peg, with wonderful self-command, "you are exciting yourself to no purpose. You asked me if I pretended to be her mother. I do pretend; but I admit, frankly, that it is all pretence." ...
— Timothy Crump's Ward - A Story of American Life • Horatio Alger

... could not have heard what I said. Possibly I should have flung myself after him and offered him further insult, had it not been that just at that moment the waiter who had witnessed my encounter with Kolpikoff handed me my greatcoat, and I at once quietened down—merely making such a pretence of having had a difference with Dimitri as was necessary to make my sudden appeasement appear nothing extraordinary. Next day, when I met Dubkoff at Woloda's, the quarrel was not raked up, yet he and I still addressed each ...
— Youth • Leo Tolstoy

... Carolina, in 1872, during the session of the legislature, when you could obtain the passage of almost any measure you pleased by a small payment—at that time seven hundred dollars—to an old negro preacher who controlled the coloured majority. Under the pretence of fitting up committee-rooms, the private lodging-rooms at the boarding-houses of the negro members, in many instances, were extravagantly furnished with Wilton and Brussels carpets, mirrors, and sofas. A thousand ...
— Handbook of Home Rule (1887) • W. E. Gladstone et al.

... afternoon I dragged Wardlaw out for a walk. In his presence I had to keep up a forced cheerfulness, and I believe the pretence did me good. We took a path up the Berg among groves of stinkwood and essenwood, where a failing stream made an easy route. It may have been fancy, but it seemed to me that the wood was emptier and that we were followed less closely. I remember it was a lovely evening, and in the clear fragrant ...
— Prester John • John Buchan

... several days: and the jury acquitted him in 15, 105, and 20 minutes. In the second trial the offense was laid both as profanity and as sedition, which seems to have made the jury hesitate. And they probably came to think that the second count was false pretence: but the length of their deliberation is a satisfactory addition to the value of the whole. In the first trial the Attorney-General (Shepherd) had the impudence to say that the libel had nothing of a political tendency about it, but ...
— A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume I (of II) • Augustus De Morgan

... thought he would not have dimitted had he dreamed the guise should have gone so; and the pitching on him was truely in odium tertii to keip of Sir Robert Sinclar, whosse journey to Scotland under the pretence of coming to sie his new maried ladie suffered strange constructions at Court, and Lauderdale conjectured it was only to give my Lord Tueddale notice of some things that was then doing to his prejudice; and its beleived he would not have bein the coy duck ...
— Publications of the Scottish History Society, Vol. 36 • Sir John Lauder

... armament, until the emperor had all that he wished of Baldwin. Thither also came back again Earl Sweyne, who had gone from this land to Denmark, and there ruined his cause with the Danes. He came hither with a pretence, saying that he would again submit to the king, and be his man; and he requested Earl Beorn to be of assistance to him, and give him land to feed him on. But Harold, his brother, and Earl Beorn resisted, and would give him nothing of that which the king ...
— The Anglo-Saxon Chronicle • Unknown

... Islands; they having become subjects of Great Britain by the terms of the peace. For many years, while the powers of Europe were engrossed in the tremendous strife of the French Revolution, these piratical states, under pretence of regular hostilities, had preyed upon the coasts as well as upon the commerce of the weak Mediterranean countries, and captives taken by them were kept in bitter slavery. Nelson in his correspondence, in 1796, mentions a curious incident which sufficiently characterizes the general motives and ...
— Types of Naval Officers - Drawn from the History of the British Navy • A. T. Mahan

... three on horseback at the court-gate to receive him, should carry him safe away as soon as the parliament-house was blown up; or, if that could not be effected, that they should kill him, and declare the princess Elizabeth queen, having secured her, under pretence of a ...
— Fox's Book of Martyrs - Or A History of the Lives, Sufferings, and Triumphant - Deaths of the Primitive Protestant Martyrs • John Fox

... peace for him until he knew her to be safely home again, and his work suffered accordingly; until, at about midday, he rang up Myra Duquesne, on the pretence of accepting her invitation to lunch on the morrow, and heard, with inexpressible relief, her ...
— Brood of the Witch-Queen • Sax Rohmer

... rulers of States," said the officer, "will require more particulars, and so, for that matter, will the police of Bologna. This is useless for any such purpose, and your pretence only adds urgency to my desire of you. I don't wish to be severe with you. I ask you in a friendly and reasonable way ...
— The Fool Errant • Maurice Hewlett

... him with an air of great wonder and doubt. When he saw her seated on the ground, he came up to her, hesitating as one in a strange place who does not want to betray that he is bewildered and has lost his way. He came with a little pretence of smiling, though his countenance was pale and scared, and said, drawing his breath quick, "I ought to know where I am, but I have lost my head, I think. Will you tell ...
— A Little Pilgrim • Mrs. Oliphant

... pretence of bathing my forehead, and she bombarded me with accounts of Martin's anxiety. When he had heard that I was ill he had turned as white as if sixteen ounces of blood had been taken out of him. It nearly broke me up to hear ...
— The Woman Thou Gavest Me - Being the Story of Mary O'Neill • Hall Caine

... brought me are nothing but little pads of moss, 3 to 4 inches in diameter and perhaps an inch in thickness. There is no pretence for a lining, but a certain amount of wool and excessively fine moss-roots are incorporated in the body of the nest. In situ they would appear to be sometimes more or ...
— The Nests and Eggs of Indian Birds, Volume 1 • Allan O. Hume

... him for good and all. I cannot trifle, or be trifled with. I am here, for the first and last time, to take him away. Is he ready to go? If you tell me he is not, it is indifferent to me on what pretence,—my doors are shut against him henceforth, and yours, I take it for granted are open ...
— Ten Boys from Dickens • Kate Dickinson Sweetser

... Carew sat by the shaded lamp in her upright armchair. She was not writing, but had re-opened the large black Bible. Molly was courting sleep in vain, having resolutely blown out her candle. Sidney made no pretence. He was fully dressed, and seated at his rarely-used writing-table. Before him lay a telegraph-form bearing nothing ...
— The Slave Of The Lamp • Henry Seton Merriman

... said Lumley, on hearing her case stated, "though I make no pretence to being a medicine-man, but I will do this for you and her:—I will engage you, if you choose, to help Blondin at his fishery, and your wife to make moccasins for us. I'll also let you have that little ...
— The Big Otter • R.M. Ballantyne

... into my mother's apartment, and come out of it, without taking the least notice of her, but put on stiff airs; and as she always withdrew when I came in, I never made any pretence to keep her there. ...
— Pamela (Vol. II.) • Samuel Richardson

... the governor-in-chief and the opposition were watched in Van Diemen's Land with interest. The same parties existed in both colonies; but Judge Pedder did not participate the political sympathies of Judge Forbes, and made no pretence to popular applause. To those who check the abuses of irresponsible power something is due; but when the balance of human infirmity is struck, it will not be always found in ...
— The History of Tasmania, Volume I (of 2) • John West

... to have many excellent Qualities, but he had an insatiable Lust of Pre-eminence. Solon could discover his Vanity, but the People were blinded by a false Glare of Virtues and he was their Idol. Under Pretence of his having escaped imminent Danger from a violent Faction, and the further Insecurity of his Person he artfully obtaind a Guard of Soldiers, by which Means he possessd himself of the Citadel & usurpd the Government. But though ...
— The Original Writings of Samuel Adams, Volume 4 • Samuel Adams

... the sources of its subtile fire, And steal their effluence for his lips and lyre? If lost at times in vague aerial flights, None treads with firmer footstep when he lights; A soaring nature, ballasted with sense, Wisdom without her wrinkles or pretence, In every Bible he has faith to read, And every altar helps to shape his creed. Ask you what name this prisoned spirit bears While with ourselves this fleeting breath it shares? Till angels greet him with a sweeter one In heaven, on earth ...
— The Poetical Works of Oliver Wendell Holmes, Complete • Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr.

... self and reflected on Kichaka's purpose and on the anxiety of Krishna, Sudeshna addressed the Suta's son in these words, 'Do thou, on the occasion of some festival, procure viands and wines for me. I shall then send my Sairindhri to thee on the pretence of bringing wine. And when she will repair thither do thou in solitude, free from interruption, humour her as thou likest. Thus soothed, she may incline her ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 2 • Kisari Mohan Ganguli

... to say that it was in bad professional form. After he had left the friendly clerk, however, he walked over to the drug store and made some inquiries in a general way. The place was a shameful pretence of a prescription pharmacy. Cigars, toilet articles, and an immense soda-water fountain took up three-fourths of the floor space. A few dusty bottles were ranged on some varnished oak shelves; there was also a little closet at one side, where the ...
— The Web of Life • Robert Herrick

... insinuated something of it to his Majesty, the day before yesterday [27th April, 1730, therefore? One momentary glance of Hansard into the Tobacco-Parliament], as of a thing I had learned from a spy" (such my pretence, O Nosti)—spy "who is the intimate friend of Knyphausen and plays traitor: you may fancy that it struck terribly." Yes! "And his Majesty has looked sour upon Hotham ever since; and passed above an hour in colloquy with ...
— History of Friedrich II of Prussia V 7 • Thomas Carlyle

... down ere long," says the drawer, and with that he makes a pretence of building up the fire, being warned thereto very like by the landlady, with an eye to the safety ...
— A Set of Rogues • Frank Barrett

... written and signed by his hand, to the Governor of Gibraltar, commanding him to surrender the place to the King of Spain the very moment he received this order, and to retire with his garrison, etc., to Tangiers. In order to execute this a Spanish general was suddenly to march to Gibraltar, under pretence of repressing the incursions of its garrison,—summon the Governor to appear, deliver to him the King of England's order, and enter into possession of the place. All this was very weakly contrived; but this concerned the King of England, ...
— Marguerite de Navarre - Memoirs of Marguerite de Valois Queen of Navarre • Marguerite de Navarre

... Aldobrand in his black gown and buckled shoes with tip-tilted heels, standing at a table and giving evidence: How that one afternoon in August came two evil-looking English sailors to his house under pretence of selling a diamond, which turned out to be but a lump of glass: and that having taken observation of all his dwelling, and more particularly the approaches to his business-room, they went their ...
— Moonfleet • J. Meade Falkner

... I could do was to keep fit, for I had a notion I might soon want all my bodily strength. I had to keep up my pretence of lameness in the daytime, so I used to take my exercise at night. I would sleep in the afternoon, when Peter had his siesta, and then about ten in the evening, after putting him to bed, I would slip out-of-doors and go for a four or five hours' tramp. Wonderful were those ...
— Mr. Standfast • John Buchan

... the younger generation against the autocracy began about 1860, at the time of the freeing of the serfs, a period known in Russia as the "epoch of great reforms." These ameliorations, which extended into almost every domain of Russian life, left intact the autocracy, which, under pretence of protecting itself, fought successfully against all activity and thus brought about, among the younger generation, a general movement towards freedom and socialism. But the autocracy found its best help in the ignorance of the people. Urban ...
— Contemporary Russian Novelists • Serge Persky

... the conservatory after that, but were hunted out on pretence of having a little music; at least Nan would have it that it ...
— Not Like Other Girls • Rosa N. Carey

... his ravings. "I will tell you what my position is. A second attempt has been made to help Count Ammiani's escape; it has failed. He is detained a prisoner by the Government under the pretence that he is implicated in the slaying of an Austrian noble by the hands of two brothers, one of whom slew him justly—not as a dog is slain, but according to every honourable stipulation of the code. I was the witness of the deed. ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... Nepenthe, "is to be recorded to the credit of the sanguinary brigand—so he terms the Good Duke—nothing whatsoever: save and except only this, that he cut off the ears of a certain prattler, intriguer, and snuff-taking sensualist called Perrelli who, under the pretence of collecting data for an alleged historical treatise, profited by his priestly garb to play fast and loose with what little remained of decent family life on that God-abandoned island. Honour to whom honor is due! The ostensible reason for this unique ...
— South Wind • Norman Douglas

... saith he, and you are one of those scribes and pharisees: for you, with a pretence, make long prayers to ...
— Grace Abounding to the Chief of Sinners • John Bunyan

... this robbery,' he continued; 'his sole connection with us arises from a promise we gave him, to find him employment in Paris; and all the money he received we took from him under the pretence of doing so. Yesterday morning, we met him for the purpose of again deceiving him, but failed. He had a louis-d'or; but it had been given him by his fiancee, that he might return home, and he was determined to fulfil his promise. ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 450 - Volume 18, New Series, August 14, 1852 • Various

... laying on of his hands and by prayer, immediately restored her; and being made straight, she glorified God before all for this unexpected deliverance. The ruler of the synagogue, who hated the doctrines of Jesus and envied the honor, tried to veil his enmity with pretence of singular piety, telling the people that they should come for healing other days and not on the holy rest of the Sabbath, as if the woman had come there on purpose for a cure, or as if a word and a touch attended with so beneficent an effect could ...
— The Woman's Bible. • Elizabeth Cady Stanton

... agreed on; if her aunt should be there, a candle was to be placed at the window fronting the gate, in the room above; if not, it was to be placed against a similar window in the room below. In the first case Alonzo was to rap loudly at the door. Melissa was to run down, under pretence of seeing who was there, fly with Alonzo to the carriage, and leave her aunt to scrape acquaintance with the ghosts and goblins of the old mansion. For even if her aunt should return, which was extremely doubtful, ...
— Alonzo and Melissa - The Unfeeling Father • Daniel Jackson, Jr.

... you. For this purpose a guide-book is not only useless, it is a let and a hindrance. After all, what does a guide-book tell you? Either it recites dry facts in an utterly soulless voice, or else, if it make any pretence at belles-lettres, as some of them painfully do, it goes off into sentiment and rapture before you have decided whether these be suited to the occasion. Anyway, a guide-book is the expression of some one else's opinion or experience, and as such is harmful to the soul as likely ...
— From a Terrace in Prague • Lieut.-Col. B. Granville Baker

... the odes of Anacreon or Sappho or the orations of Pericles. That the first speech was really written by Lysias is improbable. Like the poem of Solon, or the story of Thamus and Theuth, or the funeral oration of Aspasia (if genuine), or the pretence of Socrates in the Cratylus that his knowledge of philology is derived from Euthyphro, the invention is really due to the imagination of Plato, and may be compared to the parodies of the Sophists in the Protagoras. Numerous ...
— Phaedrus • Plato

... neighing after a woman he saw in the Bois de Vincennes, and she has got to be found, or he will die of love.—They had a consultation of doctors yesterday, by what his man tells me.—I have already eased him of a thousand francs under pretence of seeking the ...
— Scenes from a Courtesan's Life • Honore de Balzac

... blandishing air, to which he replied with some clownish grins. And then she led him into the hut, where he needed no pressing to do what she desired of him. Which done, she changed places with the other, as loyal comradeship required; and Masetto, still keeping up the pretence of simplicity, did their pleasure. Wherefore before they left, each must needs make another assay of the mute's powers of riding; and afterwards, talking the matter over many times, they agreed that it was in truth not less but even more delightful than they had ...
— The Decameron, Volume I • Giovanni Boccaccio

... vulgarity, the French to a vulgarity which is more frankly vicious. Really I hardly know which is to be preferred. In England we pretend that fancy dress is all in the interests of morality; in France they make no such pretence, and, in dispensing with shoulder-straps, do but make their intentions a little clearer. Go to the Moulin-Rouge and you will see a still clearer object-lesson. The goods in the music-halls are displayed so to speak, behind glass, in ...
— Plays, Acting and Music - A Book Of Theory • Arthur Symons

... at your blindness, shocked at the duplicity of this man, James Harrington. So he excuses his hatred of me by this pretence, and you believe him. I will speak now—why should I be silent longer? Listen to me, General Harrington. It was because I knew his secret, that James Harrington hated me. He loved the woman you have married, for whose tranquillity I was sold ...
— Mabel's Mistake • Ann S. Stephens

... principal Esperanto organs will give some idea of the diffusion of the language. The list makes no pretence of ...
— International Language - Past, Present and Future: With Specimens of Esperanto and Grammar • Walter J. Clark

... old family estates were kept up after a fashion, but it was only as the officers of a defeated garrison are allowed to take their own time about leaving their quarters. Along the broad highway some of them lingered, keeping up a poor pretence of disregarding new grades and levels, and of not seeing the little shanties that squatted under their very windows, or the more offensive habitations of a more pretentious poverty that began to range themselves here and ...
— Jersey Street and Jersey Lane - Urban and Suburban Sketches • H. C. Bunner

... individual units, such as the separate colonies had been, "binding themselves to assist each other against all force offered to, or attacks made upon them, or any of them, on account of religion, sovereignty, trade, or any other pretence whatever." ...
— The United States of America Part I • Ediwn Erle Sparks

... France: they are determined that his title shall be acknowledged. If any tribe shall refuse to recognize the authority of the French, by bowing down to the laced chapeau of Mowanna, let them abide the consequences of their obstinacy. Under cover of a similar pretence, have the outrages and massacres at Tahiti the beautiful, the queen of the South Seas, ...
— Typee - A Romance of the South Sea • Herman Melville

... no sham combats in a Roman circus; no mere pretence of being wounded. Men fought with men in stern reality; worse still, men were made to fight with wild beasts. Lions and tigers, and fierce bulls tore and gored men to death, while the audience leaned back in their comfortable seats, watching ...
— The Bible in its Making - The most Wonderful Book in the World • Mildred Duff

... debauches, but contrived an abominable plot to damage her reputation. Some time in February 1717, a loutish fellow named Palliser, who was intimate at the house, was called up to Lady Altham's apartment, on the pretence that she wished to speak to him. Lord Altham and his servants immediately followed; my lord stormed and swore, and dragged the supposed seducer into the dining-room, where he cut off part of one of his ears, and immediately afterwards ...
— Celebrated Claimants from Perkin Warbeck to Arthur Orton • Anonymous



Words linked to "Pretence" :   misrepresentation, imagery, deception, lip service, stalking-horse, affectation, imagination, affectedness, dissimulation, artificiality, colour, masquerade, pretend, hypocrisy, deceit, bluff, mental imagery, show, gloss, pose, semblance, imaging, color, appearance, mannerism



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