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Evanescent   Listen
adjective
Evanescent  adj.  
1.
Liable to vanish or pass away like vapor; vanishing; fleeting; as, evanescent joys. "So evanescent are the fashions of the world in these particulars."
2.
Vanishing from notice; imperceptible. "The difference between right and wrong, in some petty cases, is almost evanescent."






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Evanescent" Quotes from Famous Books



... joovel, monshi, or somi. She was full of fun, yet there was nothing in her fanciful delineations which could offend us. They were but the foam of a crested wave, soon dissipated in the air. They were the evanescent creations of a lively, open-hearted girl—wild notes trilled by the bird of the forest. We came again into the open valley. Down a meadow gushed a small streamlet which splashed from a wooden spout on to the roadside." "The spot where we pitched our tents was near a sort of small natural ...
— Gipsy Life - being an account of our Gipsies and their children • George Smith

... wishes for solid happiness must rest on a broader base than that afforded by momentary enjoyment, tempting and blooming as the foliage of summer, but evanescent ...
— Recollections of the late William Beckford - of Fonthill, Wilts and Lansdown, Bath • Henry Venn Lansdown

... wild will over all the magic room, at the feet of a lady, whose eyes were black as the night, but alive with a radiance such as no sun could kindle, whose hand was like warm snow, whose garments were lovely as the clouds that clothe a sunset, and who inhabited an atmosphere of evanescent odours that were themselves dreams from a region beyond the stars, while the darkness that danced with the firelight played all sorts of variations on ...
— Warlock o' Glenwarlock • George MacDonald

... flight immediately from heaven, holding correspondence with the fountain of light! How would the dark line steal imperceptibly on, watched by the eye of childhood, eager to detect its movement, never catched, nice as an evanescent cloud, or ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Volume 2 • Charles Lamb

... more fleeting have I seen Than wither'd leaves driv'n by the autumn gust:— Yea, evanescent as the whirling dust Is man's brief passage o'er this ...
— Japanese Literature - Including Selections from Genji Monogatari and Classical - Poetry and Drama of Japan • Various

... a great piece of broidery, the stormy petrel or Mother Cary's chicken sounds his continual challenge and alarm. That this mysterious hummingbird of ocean—which, had it but brilliancy of hue, might, from its evanescent liveliness, be almost called its butterfly, yet whose chirrup under the stern is ominous to mariners as to the peasant the death-tick sounding from behind the chimney jamb—should have its special haunt at the Encantadas, ...
— The Piazza Tales • Herman Melville

... for the way, Whole hours; but blundered into the right course Suddenly, and came out upon our horse, Where we had left him—to our great surprise, Stamping and switching at the pestering flies, But not apparently anxious to depart, When nearly overturning at the start, We followed down that evanescent trace Which, followed up, had brought us to ...
— The Daughter of the Storage - And Other Things in Prose and Verse • William Dean Howells

... sent him. Nor was Butler, even as a copyist, always adequate to his originals. The brilliantly witty letters of Miss Savage, by which the first volume is made precious, seem to us to indicate a real woman upon whom something more substantial might have been modelled than the delightful but evanescent picture of Alethea Pontifex. Here, at least, is a picture of Miss Savage and Butler together which, to our sense, gives some common element in both which escaped the expression of the author of The Way of ...
— Aspects of Literature • J. Middleton Murry

... men give little joy to each other; will never suspect the latent powers of each. We talk sometimes of a great talent for conversation, as if it were a permanent property in some individuals. Conversation is an evanescent relation,—no more. A man is reputed to have thought and eloquence; he cannot, for all that, say a word to his cousin or his uncle. They accuse his silence with as much reason as they would blame the insignificance of a dial in the shade. In the sun it will mark the hour. Among ...
— Essays • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... was in time to make out, on the very edge of a darkness thrown by a towering black mass like the very gateway of Erebus—yes, I was in time to catch an evanescent glimpse of my white hat left behind to mark the spot where the secret sharer of my cabin and of my thoughts, as though he were my second self, had lowered himself into the water to take his punishment: a free man, a proud swimmer striking ...
— 'Twixt Land & Sea • Joseph Conrad

... of His will. While, on the one hand, there is no more certain means of enjoying Him than that of humbly seeking to walk in the ways of His commandments, on the other hand, there is nothing more evanescent in its nature than a mere emotion, even though it be that of joy in God, unless it be turned into a spring of action for God. Such emotions, like photographs, vanish from the heart unless they be fixed. Work ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... and I shall continue in stirrups, that is, shall not dismount my Pegasus, till Monday morning, at which time you will have to thank God for having done with your affectionate friend always, but author evanescent, ...
— Biographia Epistolaris, Volume 1. • Coleridge, ed. Turnbull

... different purpose. Fancy does not require that the materials which she makes use of should be susceptible of changes in their constitution from her touch; and where they admit of modification, it is enough for her purpose if it be slight, limited, and evanescent. Directly the reverse of these are the desires and demands of the imagination. She recoils from everything but the plastic, the pliant, and the indefinite. She leaves it to fancy to describe Queen Mab ...
— English Synonyms and Antonyms - With Notes on the Correct Use of Prepositions • James Champlin Fernald

... evanescent anger, I had not sat an hour on the edge of my bed, picturing and repicturing his look, manner, words ere I smiled at the whole scene. A little pang of regret I underwent that the box had not been offered. I had meant to gratify him. Fate would not ...
— Villette • Charlotte Bronte

... Skin are among the most constant manifestations. An evanescent macular rash, not unlike that of measles—roseola—is the first to appear, usually in from six to eight weeks from the date of infection; it is widely diffused over the trunk, and the original dull rose-colour soon fades, leaving brownish ...
— Manual of Surgery - Volume First: General Surgery. Sixth Edition. • Alexis Thomson and Alexander Miles

... long upright pennons of striped grass with the homely name, than I can tell what the glory of God is who made these things. The man whose poetry is like nature in this, that it produces individual, incommunicable moods and conditions of mind—a sense of elevated, tender, marvellous, and evanescent existence, must be a poet indeed. Every dawn of such a feeling is a light-brushed bubble rendering visible for a moment the dark unknown sea of our being which lies beyond the lights of our consciousness, and is the stuff and region of our eternal growth. But think what ...
— Robert Falconer • George MacDonald

... is its cure. But the view accepted there too is pre-existence and persistence, a doctrine blasphemous to the Jew as it was to the Assyrian, to whom the gods alone were immortal, and to whom, in consequence, immortal beings would be gods. In the creed of both, man was essentially evanescent. To the Hebrew, he lived a few, brief days and then went down into silence, where no remembrance is. There, gathered among the Refaim to his fathers, he ...
— The Lords of the Ghostland - A History of the Ideal • Edgar Saltus

... personal than political in its character. In the memorable contest for the successorship to President Monroe, Mr. Calhoun at one time seemed to be a formidable candidate; but his popularity being personal was evanescent, and failed to enlist the considerate and reflecting. Even his military hopes were soon eclipsed by General Jackson, whose bold achievements and successes in the Indian and British wars captivated the ...
— The Galaxy - Vol. 23, No. 1 • Various

... visited, save by some groups of playful children, some meditative poet, or some disputative philosophers. At the side farthest from the river, frequent copses of box interspersed the more delicate and evanescent foliage, and these were cut into a thousand quaint shapes, sometimes into the forms of fauns and satyrs, sometimes into the mimicry of Egyptian pyramids, sometimes into the letters that composed the name of ...
— The Last Days of Pompeii • Edward George Bulwer-Lytton

... of art by an intellectual master. This noble painting, possibly the last from his brush, was found in Mantegna's studio after his death. Notice the smoking candle-wick at the foot, and the motto which says that everything that is not of God is as smoke evanescent. ...
— A Wanderer in Venice • E.V. Lucas

... Morgana seemed truly "atmospheric"—a small creature so fine and fair as to almost suggest an evanescent form about to melt away in mist. Some sudden thrill of superstitious fear moved Gaspard to make the sign of the cross and mutter an "Ave,"—Morgana heard him and ...
— The Secret Power • Marie Corelli

... nature of things and their difference, how often would they spy holes in the folds of the gold-cloth robe of Hypocrisy, and perceive the hooks through the bait? What man, did not Inconsiderateness deprive him of his senses, would chase baubles and pleasures—evanescent, surfeiting, foolish and disgraceful—and prefer them to peace of conscience, and glorious everlasting happiness? And who would hesitate to suffer martyrdom for his faith, for an hour or a day, or to endure affliction for forty or sixty years, if ...
— The Sleeping Bard - or, Visions of the World, Death, and Hell • Ellis Wynne

... whose virtuous feelings were as easily excited as they were evanescent, was affected by the enthusiasm with which she spoke. "Forgive me if I have alarmed you, maiden," he said "thou art too noble minded to be the toy of passing pleasure, for which my mistake destined thee; and I, even were thy birth worthy of thy noble ...
— The Fair Maid of Perth • Sir Walter Scott

... Crystal Palace, Bank holidays, and a general overcrowding of detail, both in omnibuses and in landscapes, and then, in a passage of singular beauty, not unlike one that occurs in Corot's letters, spoke of the artistic value of dim dawns and dusks, when the mean facts of life are lost in exquisite and evanescent effects, when common things are touched with mystery and transfigured with beauty, when the warehouses become as palaces and the tall chimneys of the factory seem like campaniles in ...
— Miscellanies • Oscar Wilde

... supposition that there is power apart from God. It was his life purpose to show mankind that there is nothing in this lie to cause fear, and that it can be overcome by overcoming the false thought which produces it. By overcoming that thought he showed men the evanescent nature of sickness and death. And sin he showed to be a missing of the mark through lack of understanding of what constitutes ...
— Carmen Ariza • Charles Francis Stocking

... gift in any year Has e'er excelled, or equaled this; The others evanescent were While this ...
— Grandfather's Love Pie • Miriam Gaines

... cirrus above and beneath cumulus—various kinds of cirrus clouds, and that peculiar prismatic haze which is a common sign of the passage of a vortex. The appearance depicted above is a very common, although a very evanescent appearance. When the sky appears of a clear blue through the cirri, there will be generally fresh gales without any great electrical derangement; but if the clear spaces are hazy, gradually thickening towards the nucleus, a storm may be expected. Any ...
— Outlines of a Mechanical Theory of Storms - Containing the True Law of Lunar Influence • T. Bassnett

... epigram, episode, epistolary, epitome, equestrian, equilibrium, equinoctial, equity, equivocate, eradicate, erosion, erotic, erudition, eruptive, eschew, esoteric, espousal, estrange, ethereal, eulogistic, euphonious, evanescent, evangelical, evict, exacerbate, excerpt, excommunicate, excoriate, excruciate, execrable, exegesis, exemplary, exhalation, exhilarate, exigency, exodus, exonerate, exorbitant, exotic, expectorate, expeditious, explicable, explicit, ...
— The Century Vocabulary Builder • Creever & Bachelor

... in the hope that it may blossom to purposes of great public utility. The aid of poetry has hitherto been but partially employed in the spread of a taste for Conveyancing, especially in its higher branches. Or where the Muse has shown herself, it has been but in the evanescent glimpses of a song. She has plumed her wings for no ...
— The Bon Gaultier Ballads • William Edmonstoune Aytoun

... paint, laid on with a heavy hand and a cold heart, secures for them the stability of dullness and the safety of mediocrity; and pictures whose reckless and experimental brilliancy, unequal in its result as lawless in its means, is as evanescent as the dust of an insect's wing, and presents in its chief perfections so ...
— On the Old Road Vol. 1 (of 2) - A Collection of Miscellaneous Essays and Articles on Art and Literature • John Ruskin

... observe from the foregoing demonstration that the Dechmann System of Therapy differs materially from the science of the Old-School of Medicine in that it is not based upon evanescent theories of hairsplitting philosophy but upon the solid basis ...
— Valere Aude - Dare to Be Healthy, Or, The Light of Physical Regeneration • Louis Dechmann

... of literary and political revolution, had animated the poetry of the previous generation. But while he clearly shared the uplifted aspiring spirit of Shelley, it assumed in him a totally different character. Shelley abhors limits, everything grows evanescent and ethereal before his solvent imagination, the infinity he aspires after unveils itself at his bidding, impalpable, undefined, "intense," "inane." Whereas Browning's restlessly aspiring temperament worked under the control of an eye and ear that fastened with peculiar emphasis ...
— Robert Browning • C. H. Herford

... be no question of the General's military qualities; he must have been especially useful in converting raw recruits into trained and efficient soldiers. But valor and martial skill are of so evanescent a character, (hardly less fleeting than a woman's beauty,) that Government has perhaps taken the safer course in assigning to this gallant officer, though distinguished in former wars, no more active duty than the guardianship of an apparently impregnable fortress. ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 10, No. 57, July, 1862 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... are, of which the sense is too subtle and evanescent to be fixed in a paraphrase; such are all those which are by the grammarians termed expletives, and, in dead languages, are suffered to pass for empty sounds, of no other use than to fill a verse, or to modulate a period, but which are ...
— Prefaces and Prologues to Famous Books - with Introductions, Notes and Illustrations • Charles W. Eliot

... Anatomy of Melancholy, "stylus virum arguit, our style bewrays us." Other gestures shift and change and flit, this is the ultimate and enduring revelation of personality. The actor and the orator are condemned to work evanescent effects on transitory material; the dust that they write on is blown about their graves. The sculptor and the architect deal in less perishable ware, but the stuff is recalcitrant and stubborn, and will not ...
— Style • Walter Raleigh

... unmeasured marks the first and last, Of endless time the present, future, past; 40 Immortal Guide! O, now with accents kind Give to my ear the progress of the Mind. How loves, and tastes, and sympathies commence From evanescent notices of sense? How from the yielding touch and rolling eyes The piles immense of human science rise?— With mind gigantic steps the puny Elf, And weighs and measures all things ...
— The Temple of Nature; or, the Origin of Society - A Poem, with Philosophical Notes • Erasmus Darwin

... quiet drawing of the first period. The lake is quite calm; the western hills in grey shadow, the eastern massed in light. Helvellyn rising like a mist between them, all being mirrored in the calm water. Some thin and slightly evanescent cows are standing in the shallow water in front; a boat floats motionless about a hundred yards from the shore: the foreground is of broken rocks, with lovely pieces of copse on the ...
— The Crown of Wild Olive • John Ruskin

... Deity with the greatest ease, and places man, fleeting or evanescent as he is, at the summit of the universe! As he expresses it, "The only intelligence in the universe worthy of the name is the intelligence of the organized beings which have been evolved; and the highest manifestations of the psychic power known to the ...
— Buchanan's Journal of Man, July 1887 - Volume 1, Number 6 • Various

... bed, except where it has been protected by the hard stone, and thus a natural pillar has arisen—just like the ice-pillars, which are protected from the sun in the same way; only the latter are more evanescent." ...
— Rivers of Ice • R.M. Ballantyne

... and consciousness in general, the former entirely subjective, the latter in a way objective (the consciousness of a man captivated by an attractive scene; better yet, the fluid form of revery or of the awaking from syncope). We may admit that this evanescent consciousness, affective in nature, felt rather than perceived, is due to a lack of synthesis, of relations among the internal states, which remain isolated, unable ...
— Essay on the Creative Imagination • Th. Ribot

... changeful, and evanescent. One passes easily into another by slight deviations of pronunciation, resulting from trivial differences in National and Individual condition and culture; like the Flesh of the animal, which readily decays from the Bony ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol 6, No 5, November 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... His music is redolent of the breath and odour of woodland places, of lanes and moors and gardens; or it is saturated with salt spray; or it communicates the incommunicable in its voicing of that indefinable and evanescent sense of association which is evoked by certain aspects, certain phases, of the outer world—that sudden emotion of things past and irrecoverable which may cling about a field at sunset, or a quiet street at dusk, or a sudden intimation of spring ...
— Edward MacDowell • Lawrence Gilman

... future may perhaps rectify this for a new generation; and give us, without mechanical drawback, the authentic accents of speakers dead and gone; but it can never perpetuate the dramatic accompaniment of gesture and expression. If, as always, there are exceptions to this rule, they are necessarily evanescent. Now and then, it may be, some clever mimic will recall the manner of a passed-away predecessor; and he may even contrive to hand it on, more or less effectually, to a disciple. But the reproduction is of brief duration; and it is speedily effaced ...
— De Libris: Prose and Verse • Austin Dobson

... regards expression, the MAZOURKAS of Chopin differ greatly from his POLONAISES. Indeed they are entirely unlike in character. The bold and vigorous coloring of the Polonaises gives place to the most delicate, tender, and evanescent shades in the Mazourkas. A nation, considered as a whole, in its united, characteristic, and single impetus, is no longer placed before us; the character and impressions now become purely personal, always individualized and divided. No longer is the feminine ...
— Life of Chopin • Franz Liszt

... fancy, pearled with evanescent dew, fresh as a new creation of sunbeams, has power to suppress in one part of its petals all vibrations we call red, in another those we call yellow, and purple, and reflect each of these in other parts of the same tender petal. "Pansies are for thoughts," even more thoughts than poor Ophelia ...
— Recreations in Astronomy - With Directions for Practical Experiments and Telescopic Work • Henry Warren

... Shakespeare's Measure for Measure (act iv. scene 1), and to insert one or two phrases from Fletcher's version. Whether the composer of that song had ever met with the Latin lyric to Lydia can scarcely form the subject of critical conjecture. Yet there is a faint evanescent ...
— Wine, Women, and Song - Mediaeval Latin Students' songs; Now first translated into English verse • Various

... eyes over his sunburnt features, his broad shoulders, his straight, tall, motionless figure, rested at last on the ground at his feet. Then she smiled. In the sombre beauty of her face that smile was like the first ray of light on a stormy daybreak that darts evanescent and pale through the gloomy clouds: the forerunner ...
— An Outcast of the Islands • Joseph Conrad

... and in their dreams feasted at those wonderful tables which hungry children see only in sleep, to the poor woman sitting at the failing fire there came no surcease of sorrow, and no vision threw even an evanescent brightness over the hard, cold facts of her surroundings. And the reality of her condition was dire enough, God knows. Alone in the wilderness, miles from any human habitation, the trails covered deep with snow, her provisions ...
— Holiday Tales - Christmas in the Adirondacks • W. H. H. Murray

... there, and Anhalt-Dessau: for their very sake, were there nothing farther, one surely ought to go? Such was the probability, a visit to Blenheim field in passing. And surely, somewhere in those heart-rending masses of Historical Rubbish, I did at last find express evanescent mention of the fact,—but cannot now say where;—the exact record, or conceivable image of which, would have been a perceptible pleasure to us. Alas, in those dim dreary Books, all whirling dismal round one's soul, like vortices of dim Brandenburg ...
— History of Friedrich II of Prussia V 7 • Thomas Carlyle

... that he was in a dream. In the realms of the subconscious he had heard just such sounds—exotic and unearthly—fleeting and evanescent. ...
— The Blind Spot • Austin Hall and Homer Eon Flint

... always be expected to find out much about the flowers of a tree, as they are frequently very evanescent, and usually difficult ...
— Trees of the Northern United States - Their Study, Description and Determination • Austin C. Apgar

... correspondences inevitably cease. We must find an organism so high and complex, that at some point in its development it shall have added a correspondence which organic death is powerless to arrest. We must in short pass beyond that definite region where the correspondences depend on evanescent and material media, and enter a further region where the Environment corresponded with is itself Eternal. Such an Environment exists. The Environment of the Spiritual world is outside the influence of ...
— Natural Law in the Spiritual World • Henry Drummond

... Italian humour, we infer from Gherardi, who could not explain the term but by describing it as "Un Tour; JEU ITALIEN!" It was so peculiar to them, that he could only call it by their own name. It is difficult to describe that of which the whole magic consists in being seen; and what is more evanescent than the ...
— Curiosities of Literature, Vol. II (of 3) - Edited, With Memoir And Notes, By His Son, The Earl Of Beaconsfield • Isaac D'Israeli

... how they contemned, slighted, and abhorred their own righteousness as filthy and insufficient to do them any good. The learned discourses our tinker had heard at church had casually passed over his mind like evanescent clouds, and left little or no lasting impression. But these poor women, 'methought they spake as actually did make them speak; they speak with such pleasant as of Scripture language, and with such appearance of grace in all they said, that they were to me as if ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... feeling is, how evanescent it becomes, when once familiarised! It has no longer power over the senses, and the soldier and sailor pillow themselves on the corpse with perfect indifference, if not with a jest. So it is with those who are accustomed ...
— The King's Own • Captain Frederick Marryat

... enabled to retain every breath of air that might come along. By the time that this was done the first cat's-paws of the approaching breeze were playing around us, distending our lighter sails for a moment or two, and then dying away again. But light and evanescent as these cat's-paws were, they were sufficient to get the brig round with her jib-boom pointing straight for the chase once more; and a minute or two later the first of the true breeze reached us, and we began to glide slowly ahead before it, with squared ...
— A Middy in Command - A Tale of the Slave Squadron • Harry Collingwood

... appeals to him with special intimacy—that novel which, more than any other, seems to express, in its exquisitely perverse charm, all that decadent civilisation of which Des Esseintes is the type and symbol. In poetry he has discovered the fine perfume, the evanescent charm, of Paul Verlaine, and near that great poet (forgetting, strangely, Arthur Rimbaud) he places two poets who are curious—the disconcerting, tumultuous Tristan Corbiere, and the painted and bejewelled Theodore Hannon. With Edgar Poe he has the instinctive sympathy which drew Baudelaire ...
— Figures of Several Centuries • Arthur Symons

... some instances it has lasted several minutes. In every climate it is witnessed, and at all times of the year, but most frequently in the autumnal months. As far back as records go, we meet with allusions to these swift and evanescent luminous travelers. Minerva's hasty flight from the peaks of Olympus to break the truce between the Greeks and Trojans, is compared by Homer to the emission of a brilliant star. Virgil, in the first book of the Georgics, mentions the shooting ...
— Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 4, September, 1850 • Various

... or as our merry ancestors would have called it, a flam, is usually the most ephemeral and evanescent of human devices. Like a boy's soap bubble, it glitters for a brief moment in iridescent rotundity, then ceases to be even a film of air. It is unsubstantial as the tail of Halley's comet. On rare occasions, it is true, its existence is prolonged; many worthy people are beguiled; ...
— Round the World in Seven Days • Herbert Strang

... traversed by tortuous lines of indigo where the pecan treed creeks pursued their foiled courses, and troops of little hills grouped themselves about,—pink, pinkish, purple, purpling blue, white, as they faded from view like the evanescent cherubs in the corner of an old master. The hills, however, were little only because the stretch was so vast; it was really a broad plafond upon which they had solemnly entered to dance a minuet with the playful shadows of the clouds. The sky possessed everything. There was so much ...
— Lippincott's Magazine, October 1885 • Various

... false and evanescent, and aware of our deceit, From the straw that is our vitals to the clay that is our feet. You may serve us if you must, and you shall have your wage of ashes, — Though arrears due thereafter may be hard ...
— The Three Taverns • Edwin Arlington Robinson

... perfumery. Of its remedial qualities we can say nothing, such matter being irrelevant to the purpose of this book. Considered, however, as a perfume, with the public taste it ranks very high; and although it is exceedingly volatile and evanescent, yet it has that excellent quality which is called "refreshing." Whether this be due to the rosemary or to the spirit, we cannot say, but think something may be attributed to both. One important thing relating to Eau de ...
— The Art of Perfumery - And Methods of Obtaining the Odors of Plants • G. W. Septimus Piesse

... conscience about this piece of work. The story might have been better told of course. All one's work might have been better done; but this is the sort of reflection a worker must put aside courageously if he doesn't mean every one of his conceptions to remain for ever a private vision, an evanescent reverie. How many of those visions have I seen vanish in my time! This one, however, has remained, a testimony, if you like, to my courage or a proof of my rashness. What I care to remember best is the testimony of some French readers who volunteered the opinion that in those hundred pages or ...
— A Set of Six • Joseph Conrad

... admitted that for me he is more especially the man who in his youth had eaten roast dog in the depths of a gloomy forest of snow-loaded pines. My memory cannot place him in any remembered scene. A hooked nose, some sleek white hair, an unrelated evanescent impression of a meagre, slight, rigid figure militarily buttoned up to the throat, is all that now exists on earth of Mr. Nicholas B.; only this vague shadow pursued by the memory of his grandnephew, the last surviving human being, I suppose, of all those he had seen ...
— A Personal Record • Joseph Conrad

... word "Repent" would be a gleeful paradox. For the painters of the full Renaissance, Roman martyrs and Olympian deities—the heroes of the Acta Sanctorum, and the heroes of Greek romance—were alike burghers of one spiritual city, the city of the beautiful and human. What exquisite and evanescent fragrance was educed from these apparently diverse blossoms by their interminglement and fusion—how the high-wrought sensibilities of the Christian were added to the clear and radiant fancies of the Greek, and how the frank sensuousness of the Pagan gave body and fulness to the floating ...
— Renaissance in Italy Vol. 3 - The Fine Arts • John Addington Symonds

... feel some inclination towards exterior acts and ritual observances. Ideas not represented by sensible objects are fleeting, variable, and evanescent. We are not able to judge of the degree of conviction which operated at any particular time upon our own thoughts, but as it is recorded by some certain and definite effect. He that reviews his life in order to determine the probability of his acceptance with God, if he could once establish ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson, LL.D, In Nine Volumes - Volume the Third: The Rambler, Vol. II • Samuel Johnson

... accompany a passage across these belts; their first experience being a calm that lasted five days on end without a break, save for the occasional cat's-paw that came stealing from time to time over the glassy surface of the ocean, tinging it here and there with transient patches of delicate evanescent blue. And as these cat's-paws were all that they could rely upon to help them across the calm belt, it was necessary to maintain a constant watch for them, and to trim round the yards in such a manner as to make the most ...
— Dick Leslie's Luck - A Story of Shipwreck and Adventure • Harry Collingwood

... revealed by the removal of the mantle of snow, lighting up with flickering, changing glow a rectangular door yard, the children stand and gaze into the dancing flame, their vast, distorted, ghostlike shadows lost in the night, their faces reflecting every evanescent glare, and their spirits charmed by the same spell that took form in the fire-worship of their ancestors. How they delight in stirring up the embers and sending up a fountain spray of sparks! What joy in seeing the big sticks break into glowing coals, darting out new tongues of flame ...
— The Ontario Readers: Fourth Book • Various

... evanescent moods, Upon the face of the still passive earth, Its hills, and fields, and woods, Thou with thy seasons and thy hours art ever calling forth! Even like a lord of music bent Over his instrument, Giving to carol, ...
— The Poetical Works of George MacDonald in Two Volumes, Volume I • George MacDonald

... however, we soon find that the author is a master in his art, that without pretension and without exaggeration, he touches profound springs of thought and sentiment, and represents with a graceful decision, and in clear light, those evanescent and unconscious transpirations of character, in which a novelist's capacity ...
— Graham's Magazine Vol XXXIII No. 5 November 1848 • Various

... they are to be means to an end, and ever to be felt to be evanescent. They should differ in the motive for action, which should, for a Christian, ever be the love of God. They should differ in that a Christian abstains from much which non-Christians feel free to do, and ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Isaiah and Jeremiah • Alexander Maclaren

... been there so long. Their grandsires knew Lebanon, and the grandsires of these were the servants of the King of Tyre and came to Solomon's court. And amidst these black-haired children of grey-headed Time stood the old house of Oneleigh. I know not how many centuries had lashed against it their evanescent foam of years; but it was still unshattered, and all about it were the things of long ago, as cling strange growths to some sea-defying rock. Here, like the shells of long-dead limpets, was armour that men encased themselves in long ago; ...
— The Sword of Welleran and Other Stories • Lord Dunsany

... the moon is obscured by masses of clouds; the trees no sooner blossom than their flowers are scattered by the wind. All beauty is evanescent. ...
— In Ghostly Japan • Lafcadio Hearn

... often so slight as to be all but unnoticeable. In the case of some peculiarities I have only a mere suggestion to go upon, in that of others a bare surmise, a hint so fleeting that it may well seem to the judicious as if the meshes of language were too coarse to catch such evanescent indication. ...
— The Man Shakespeare • Frank Harris

... effrontery, the search for methods in the Reign of Terror, the applause for revolutionary models? Such inexcusable perversion of a writer's meaning for an evanescent political object—and a very shabby object too—is enough to make one think that George III. knew what he was talking about, when he once delivered himself of the saying that "Politics are a trade for a ...
— Studies in Literature • John Morley

... into Greek and mediaeval art, I was able to describe, in general terms, what all men did or felt, I find now many characters in many men; some, it seems to me, founded on the inferior and evanescent principles of modernism, on its recklessness, impatience, or faithlessness; others founded on its science, its new affection for nature, its love of openness and liberty. And among all these characters, good or evil, I see that ...
— Selections From the Works of John Ruskin • John Ruskin

... to travel through life accompanied by any one person. He had fallen in and out of love as often as was wholesome or possible for so hard-working a young man, and always looked upon the experience as an agreeable relaxation, as it undoubtedly is. But never for one moment did he allow such evanescent attachments to turn him a hair's breadth out of his course. Now something had happened to him, and he knew that for the future the platitude had become a lie, and that the only incentive either to high hopes or their fulfilment lay in the prospect ...
— The Ffolliots of Redmarley • L. Allen Harker

... of the lymphadenitis vary with the nature of the irritant. Sometimes it is mild and evanescent, as in the glandular enlargement in the neck which attends tonsillitis and other forms of sore throat. Sometimes it is more persistent, as in the enlargement that is associated with adenoids, hypertrophied tonsils, carious teeth, eczema of the scalp, and otorrhoea; and it is possible ...
— Manual of Surgery - Volume First: General Surgery. Sixth Edition. • Alexis Thomson and Alexander Miles

... an inveterate habit. Is this, then, a part of your better nature? Is there no depth beneath this evanescent surface—froth and foam? I believe there is. But in order that it may be discovered to the light and made fit for cultivation, this trivial surface-crust must be turned under, kept down, lest light and heat nourish its ...
— Hubert's Wife - A Story for You • Minnie Mary Lee

... group of jars which stood On a distant shelf, it seemed the sky Had lent the half-tones of his blazonry To paint these porcelains with unknown hues Of reds dyed purple and greens turned blues, Of lustres with so evanescent a sheen Their colours are felt, but never seen. Strange winged dragons writhe about These vases, poisoned venoms spout, Impregnate with old Chinese charms; Sealed urns containing mortal harms, They fill the mind with thoughts impure, ...
— Sword Blades and Poppy Seed • Amy Lowell

... wonderfully brilliant and diffused. The very soil, full of micaceous fragments, sparkles at our feet. Colour takes a depth as well as a refinement strange even to the Riviera; nowhere is the sea so darkly purple, nowhere are the tones of the distant hills so delicate and evanescent, nowhere are the sunsets so sublime. The scenery around harmonizes in its gaiety, its vivacity, its charm with this brightness of air and light. There is little of grandeur about it, little to compare in magnificence with the huge background ...
— Stray Studies from England and Italy • John Richard Green

... us an essence, a nature, a soul, a reality in short, with which may connect itself another future than the dissolution of the sepulchre; whether there remains another hope than annihilation as the term of our latest sorrows, or, for the aspirants after fame, only that evanescent memory which time bears away ...
— The Heavenly Father - Lectures on Modern Atheism • Ernest Naville

... angels "flying" because our language is human and earthly, and we cannot imagine the attributes of angels. Few indeed are the artists who in pictures of the Annunciation represent the Angel as a luminous, delicate, and evanescent figure. ...
— Spontaneous Activity in Education • Maria Montessori

... flake as it falls! Gentle is too rough a word for the motion. It floats, a crystal cob-web shot with the glint of sun-jewels; tangible but melting to your touch, evanescent and translucent as light; conceived of the wind that bloweth where it listeth and the gossamer clouds of a ...
— The Freebooters of the Wilderness • Agnes C. Laut

... sight of a load of them. Our driver begins to lose his load the moment he tries to transport them to where they do not belong, that is, to any but the most beautiful. Though he gets out from time to time, and feels of them, and thinks they are all there, I see the stream of their evanescent and celestial qualities going to heaven from his cart, while the pulp and skin and core only are going to market. They are not apples, but pomace. Are not these still Iduna's apples, the taste of which keeps the gods forever young? and think ...
— Excursions • Henry D. Thoreau

... you are pleased, when your friends inform you of your faults. I am ignorant what they are; but I am sure they must be such evanescent trifles, compared with your personal and mental accomplishments, that I would despise the ungenerous narrow soul, who would notice any shadow of imperfections you may seem to have, any other way than in the most delicate ...
— The Letters of Robert Burns • Robert Burns

... themselves in the American and the French Revolution. He voices the complaints, and, to some extent, the aspirations of Europe. He shows his influence in Fitz-Greene Halleck's Marco Bozzaris. Shelley, who also belongs to the school of revolt, has a peculiar position as a poet of ethereal, evanescent, and spirit-like beauty. He is heard in the voice of the West Wind, the Cloud, the unseen Skylark, the "Spirit of Night," and "the white radiance of Eternity." Bryant's call in The Evening ...
— History of American Literature • Reuben Post Halleck

... the pileus, first hemispherical, then becoming expanded and sometimes striate on the margin, while the stem is stuffed. The gills are said to be of one color and the ring floccose, viscose, and evanescent in drying. It occurs on dung, or in ...
— Studies of American Fungi. Mushrooms, Edible, Poisonous, etc. • George Francis Atkinson

... this encounter, and I saw the old gleam of mirthfulness in Miss Warren's eyes. How well I remembered when I first saw that evanescent illumination—the quick flash of a bright, genial spirit. She delights in her lover's keen thrusts," was now my thought, "and is pleased to think I'm no match for him. She should remember that it's a poor time for a man to tilt when he can scarcely sit erect." But Adah's pleasure was unalloyed. ...
— A Day Of Fate • E. P. Roe

... quadrangle. An infinite distress possessed Razumov, annihilated his energy, and before his eyes everything appeared confused and as if evanescent. He dared not leave the fellow there. "He may be affiliated to the police," was the thought that passed through his mind. "Who could tell?" But eyeing the miserable frost-nipped, famine-struck figure of his companion he perceived the absurdity of ...
— Under Western Eyes • Joseph Conrad

... gems is as much more important than that of flowers as the imperishable gem is itself more enduring than the withering, the evanescent blossom. A gentleman may not with safety present to a lady a gem of whose accompanying sentiment he is ignorant. But with the language of gems understood between them, how could a sentiment be more exquisitely or more acceptably expressed than by the gift of a costly gem uttering ...
— Bonaventure - A Prose Pastoral of Acadian Louisiana • George Washington Cable

... the inevitable, had put the cook upon his mettle. Ouardi was already to be seen with a bottle of Pommery in each hand, and was only prevented from instantly uncorking them by the representations of his mistress and an elaborate exposition of the peculiar and evanescent virtues of champagne. Ali was humming a mysterious song about a lovesick camel-man, with which he intended to make glad the hearts of the assembly when the halting time was over. And the dining-table was already ...
— The Garden Of Allah • Robert Hichens

... opinion, not only respecting the baptists, but all other sects as well. What his own ideas of religion were I never could make out. Universalism I fancied it was, but differing much from the theories of those evanescent preachers who sometimes flashed like meteors through the land, leaving doubt and recklessness in their path. The first truths of Christianity had been imparted to him, and these, mingling with his own innate ideas of veneration, formed his faith; as original, though more ...
— Sketches And Tales Illustrative Of Life In The Backwoods Of New Brunswick • Mrs. F. Beavan

... human beings, herding together like animals in the den or stall. It is not mere conventionalism,—a human association made up of the nursery, the parlor, the outward of domestic life, resting upon some evanescent passion, some sensual impression and policy. These do not make ...
— The Christian Home • Samuel Philips

... and during," murmurs the general practitioner in answer to some interpolation of the outsider's. "I assure you, Manson, one sees all sorts of evanescent forms of madness." ...
— Round the Red Lamp - Being Facts and Fancies of Medical Life • Arthur Conan Doyle

... harmonious colouring upon some objects in which we had previously failed to recognise the beautiful. To perform that duty effectually is perhaps the highest of artistic merits; and though we may complain of Hawthorne's colouring as too evanescent, its charm grows upon us the ...
— Hours in a Library, Volume I. (of III.) • Leslie Stephen

... the heavens had opened and flooded his senses, till he nearly fainted, with the perfume of celestial lands. The intoxicating sweetness of it bewildered his young brain. It was nothing delicate, evanescent, like the smell of a flower. It as thick, pungent, cloying, compelling. Mouth agape and nostril wide, he followed the exquisite source of the emanation like one in a dream, half across the yard. A curate laughingly and unsuspectingly brought him back to earth by laying hands on him and bundling him ...
— The Fortunate Youth • William J. Locke

... mankind a new world. The insight of Galileo of Pisa revealed to it the truth of its laws of being. Guido Monacco of Arezzo bestowed on it the most spiritual of all earthly joys by finding a visible record for the fugitive creations of harmony ere then impalpable and evanescent as the passing glories of the clouds. Dante Alighieri taught to it the might of that vulgar tongue in which the child babbles at its mother's knee, and the orator leads a breathless multitude at his will ...
— Wisdom, Wit, and Pathos of Ouida - Selected from the Works of Ouida • Ouida

... the drunkards, who had not cared a rush for final perdition. The effect produced was tremendous. Almost all the men and women of the parish took the total abstinence pledge; and since that day drunkenness has nearly ceased in that parish. Nor was the improvement evanescent; it has ...
— Orthodoxy: Its Truths And Errors • James Freeman Clarke

... next two days in sketching and outlining his various expressions as far as possible from memory. She would learn to catch those evanescent lines—that something which makes the human face eloquent, though ...
— Barriers Burned Away • E. P. Roe

... The ostent evanescent, The substance of an artist's mood or savan's studies long, Or warrior's, martyr's, hero's toils, To fashion ...
— Leaves of Grass • Walt Whitman

... asked Mrs. Friend. And the man beside her noticed the sudden gleam in her quiet little face, that rare or evanescent sprite of laughter or satire that even the dwellers in Lancaster ...
— Helena • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... however, speak more especially of his jury-trials, because in them more of his whole nature was brought into play, and because of them and of his management of them there is and can be no full record. The arguments and triumphs of the great advocate are almost as evanescent and traditionary as the conversation of great talkers like Coleridge. In what we have to say we cannot be expected to call up the arguments and cases themselves, and we must necessarily be confined to a somewhat general statement of certain mental ...
— Atlantic Monthly Vol. 6, No. 33, July, 1860 • Various

... like the Pigeons' Christmas Tree we long to linger, but they are evanescent. The Candy Man must see the children home after a few brief ...
— The Little Red Chimney - Being the Love Story of a Candy Man • Mary Finley Leonard

... temporal orbit with Mrs. Charmond's for a day or two in the past had created a sentimental interest in her at the time, but it had been so evanescent that in the ordinary onward roll of affairs he would scarce ever have recalled it again. To find her here, however, in these somewhat romantic circumstances, magnified that by-gone and transitory ...
— The Woodlanders • Thomas Hardy

... transpiring. She did not know that when she had seated herself beside her son on the porch she had displaced with her gentle, elderly materiality the sweetest phantom of a beloved young girl. She did not know that when she entered the house the delicate, evanescent thing returned swifter than thought itself, and filled with the sweet presence that vacuum in her son's heart which she herself had never filled, and nestled there through a delicious hour of the summer night. She did not dream, as she sat by the window, staring out drowsily into the soft shadows ...
— The Debtor - A Novel • Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

... Circassian orbs floated in pleasure; and for Mary herself, her breast heaved, her cheeks glowed, her hands trembled, a quick sigh fluttered in her bosom; and whilst she remained in his presence, she believed that happiness had lost its usual evanescent property, and become tangible, to hold and press upon ...
— Thaddeus of Warsaw • Jane Porter

... And judgment which unsteady veers And eye which gleams with inspiration— All this was novel to Eugene. The cold reply with gloomy mien He oft upon his lips would curb, Thinking: 'tis foolish to disturb This evanescent boyish bliss. Time without me will lessons give, So meantime let him joyous live And deem the world perfection is! Forgive the fever youth inspires, ...
— Eugene Oneguine [Onegin] - A Romance of Russian Life in Verse • Aleksandr Sergeevich Pushkin

... considered family. There was a continual swell of guests dashing down and dashing away, like the ocean; brilliant as its foam, numerous as its waves. But there was one permanent inhabitant of this princely mansion far more interesting to our hero than the evanescent crowds who rose like bubbles, glittered, ...
— The Young Duke • Benjamin Disraeli

... the coincidence or opposition of these ocular spectra, (or colours which remain in the eye after having for some time contemplated a luminous object) are more easily and more accurately ascertained, now their laws have been investigated by Dr. Darwin, than the relicts of evanescent sounds upon the ear; it is to be wished that some ingenious musician would further cultivate this curious field of science: for if visible music can be agreeably produced, it would be more easy to add sentiment to it by the representations of groves and ...
— The Botanic Garden. Part II. - Containing The Loves of the Plants. A Poem. - With Philosophical Notes. • Erasmus Darwin

... drawn to the danger-zone, a send-off would be given in salvos of cheers from the sides of the anchored vessels, the bands of the Navy sometimes playing them out with the old airs of England. And the lads themselves, enjoying their evanescent triumph, and feeling like the applauded heroes on a carnival car, would shout back a merry response, or pick up the chorus of the tune rendered ...
— Tell England - A Study in a Generation • Ernest Raymond

... she had in this fallen below her ideal, she chafed again at her own irritation. The evil from which she now suffered was of the stuff of which much of the pain of life is made—a flimsy stuff that vanishes before the investigation of reason more surely than the stuff of our evanescent joys. There was nothing that could be called incompatibility of temper between these two; no one saw more clearly than Sophia the generosity and courage of Mrs. Rexford's heart; no one else sympathised so deeply with her motherly cares, for no one else understood them half so well; and ...
— What Necessity Knows • Lily Dougall

... seeing and hearing through the senses, to the Being in whom all things are and have life! Ere two years old, she, whose dream is now with us, all over the small silvan world, that beheld the revelation, how evanescent! of her pure existence, was called the "Holy Child!" The taint of sin—inherited from those who disobeyed in Paradise—seemed from her fair clay to have been washed out at the baptismal font, and by her first infantine tears. ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 17, No. 476, Saturday, February 12, 1831 • Various

... his colleagues. This apathy is mainly attributable to that which appears in Parliament and in the country upon all foreign questions. Nobody understands and nobody cares for them, and when any rare and occasional notice is taken of a particular point, or of some question on which a slight and evanescent interest is manifested, Palmerston has little difficulty in dealing with the matter, which he always meets with a consummate impudence and, it must be allowed, a skill and resolution, which invariably carry him through. Whether the ...
— The Greville Memoirs (Second Part) - A Journal of the Reign of Queen Victoria from 1837 to 1852 - (Volume 1 of 3) • Charles C. F. Greville

... British defeat, they went out of their way to display their goodwill towards Great Britain. Plaudits and toasts, it may be said, prove nothing except the existence of a sentiment which, even if it be genuine, is certain to be evanescent. This is true; but the matter for consideration is not whether the feeling of friendliness towards Great Britain which found expression daring the festivities at Yorktown would survive a conflict of interest between England and America, ...
— England's Case Against Home Rule • Albert Venn Dicey

... of the great colonial nations who in a few decades have brought continents under their dominion. In nomadic hordes it is based upon habitual mobility and the possession of herds, which are at once incentive and means for extending the geographical horizon; but it suffers from the evanescent character of nomadic political organization, and the tendency toward dismemberment bred in all pastoral life by dispersal over scattered grazing grounds. Hence the empires set up by nomad conquerors like the Saracens ...
— Influences of Geographic Environment - On the Basis of Ratzel's System of Anthropo-Geography • Ellen Churchill Semple

... joy had subsided, this was made the subject of their declamation, and a stimulus to popular excitement. Public writers were employed to prevent a return of harmony between Great Britain and her colonies, and though addresses of thanks were voted by the assemblies to the king, this was but an evanescent show of gratitude. The same temper was found especially to prevail in the assembly of Massachusets against the Declaratory Act, as had been displayed against the Stamp Act, and the spirit of resistance soon spread to the other colonies. The right of legislative ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... was always evanescent, and he was sorry a moment afterward for what he had said. Andy Byers exchanged no more words with him, and skillfully combined a curt and crusty manner toward him with an aspect of contemplative dreariness. Occasionally, as they paused to rest, ...
— Down the Ravine • Charles Egbert Craddock (real name: Murfree, Mary Noailles)

... revolution by which at this epoch all the main attributes of government passed into the hands of the States-General-acting as a league of sovereignties—has already been indicated. The period during which the council exercised functions conferred on it by the States-General themselves was brief and evanescent. The jealousy of the separate provinces soon prevented the state-council—a supreme executive body entrusted with the general defence of the commonwealth—from causing troops to pass into or out of ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... superior. He was particularly attracted to the study of eloquence; and the perusal of Cicero's "Hortensius" (which unfortunately has been lost in the vicissitudes of time) stirred his soul to higher flights and begot a noble enthusiasm for the imperishable beauty of wisdom, made him impatient of the evanescent hopes of men, and carried him onward to further quest ...
— Great Men and Famous Women. Vol. 3 of 8 • Various

... flashing eyes, the deep, eager breaths like sighs of rapture. A rhapsody: the rush and growl and frown of the world (said he)—the sombre colors, the veil of mist, the everlasting hills, rising in serenity above the turmoil and evanescent rage. To this I listened in wonder. I had not for myself discovered these beauties; but thereafter, because of this ...
— The Cruise of the Shining Light • Norman Duncan

... throat from cold, or of the [461] relaxed kind; and when mixed with water it furnishes a most refreshing drink in fevers. But the berries should be used immediately after being gathered, as they quickly spoil, and their fine flavour is very evanescent. The vinegar can be extemporised by diluting Raspberry jelly with hot vinegar, or by mixing syrup of the fruit ...
— Herbal Simples Approved for Modern Uses of Cure • William Thomas Fernie

... twenty-five years' distance his star has set. How many of these precocious classics are there who do not endure, and who are so only for a while! We turn round one morning and are surprised not to find them standing behind us. Madame de Sevigne would wittily say they possessed but an evanescent colour. With regard to classics, the least expected prove the best and greatest: seek them rather in the vigorous genius born immortal and flourishing for ever. Apparently the least classical of the four great poets of the age of Louis XIV. ...
— Literary and Philosophical Essays • Various

... fancies that between her inner self and the scene without, whether in the skies and air and sunset, or in the abodes of men stretching far and near till lost amid the roofs and domes of the great city, she had fixed and riveted the link of a sympathy hitherto fluctuating, unsubstantial, evanescent, undefined. Absorbed in her revery, she did not notice the deepening of the short twilight, till the servant entering drew the curtains between her and the world without, and placed the lamp on the table ...
— The Parisians, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... earth and in the clouds, amongst heroes, amongst the light-footed nymphs, and amongst the Olympian gods! In these latter the movement of imagination is centrifugal, it sustains itself in the loftiest altitudes, and in the most evanescent and fleecy shapes of thought it finds the materials from which it wreathes its climbing, "cloud-capped" citadels. The opposite order of genius is, as we have previously called ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. XII. July, 1863, No. LXIX. - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... firmly believe that the living principle is never extinguished. Since the atoms of matter are indestructible, as far as we know, it is difficult to believe that the spark which gives to their union life, memory, affection, intelligence, and fidelity, is evanescent. Every atom in the human frame, as well as in that of animals, undergoes a periodical change by continual waste and renovation; the abode is changed, not its inhabitant. If animals have no future, the existence of many is most wretched; multitudes are starved, cruelly beaten, and ...
— Personal Recollections, from Early Life to Old Age, of Mary Somerville • Mary Somerville

... horizon seemed grown into her mind like an etching. She watched the slow dusk swell and gather—with such delicate, soft-blending gradations in the birth of night as Edwin Waugh loves to seize and word-paint. Through all its fine evanescent change of thought and feeling she watched unconsciously; and the growth, death, and burial of that twilight were ever after a substratum to all the sadness and all the hope that visited her. Through palest eastern rose, through silvery gold and golden ...
— What's Mine's Mine • George MacDonald

... asked, "that the one great drawback throughout the ages to a full acceptance of psi is the lack of permanent evidence? It has always been evanescent, perishable. It always rests solely upon the word of witnesses. But if I could show you a film print, then you could not doubt the existence of ...
— Sense from Thought Divide • Mark Irvin Clifton

... down on every exposed grain. So Mark uses here again his favourite 'straightway' to express the swift disappearance of the seed. As soon as the preacher's voice is silent, or the book closed, the words are forgotten. The impression of a gliding keel on a smooth lake is not more evanescent. ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - St. Mark • Alexander Maclaren

... the alterations brought on by the facility of communicating knowledge; the systematical manner in which men pursue their interests, and other changes: give reason to hope that, in the present situation of things, those possessions may be rendered permanent, that have hitherto been found to be so evanescent and fugitive. ...
— An Inquiry into the Permanent Causes of the Decline and Fall of Powerful and Wealthy Nations. • William Playfair

... would scarcely deserve a mention, were it not for the effect that they had in centralizing wealth and for the clear picture that they give of the ideas of the times. Posterity, which is the true arbiter in distinguishing between the enduring and the evanescent, the important and the trivial, rightly cares nothing for essentially petty matters which once were held of the highest importance. Edgar Allan Poe, wearing his life out in extreme poverty, William Lloyd ...
— History of the Great American Fortunes, Vol. I - Conditions in Settlement and Colonial Times • Myers Gustavus

... alone! Their presence, which seemed so evanescent on the valley floor, was closer now, more clearly sensed. Almost as if, at any instant, the veil of blindness would disperse ...
— Eight Keys to Eden • Mark Irvin Clifton

... despoiled of all its charms, is no longer the scene of any enjoyments but such as wealth can purchase. At the same time we feel there a nameless cold privation, and conscious that money can coin the same enjoyments with more variety elsewhere, we substitute these futile and evanescent pleasures for that perennial spring of calm satisfaction, "without o'erflowing full," which is fed by the exercise of the kindly affections, and soon indeed must those stagnate where there are not proper objects to excite them. I have been forced ...
— The Journal of Negro History, Vol. I. Jan. 1916 • Various

... universal speculation through which he ranged "with unconfined wings." How wide and varied was the region he traversed a glance at the titles of the papers which make up his collected—or more properly, selected—works (for there was much matter of evanescent interest not reprinted) sufficiently shows. Some things in his own line he has done perfectly; he has written many pages of magnificently mixed argument, irony, humour and eloquence, which, for sustained brilliancy, richness, subtle force and purity of style and effect, ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 2 - "Demijohn" to "Destructor" • Various

... no longer seen. The conversational nimbleness and versatility of intellect, the charm or assurance or magnetism of manner, the weight of social position, all of which tend to secure to an inferior man a pre-eminence in the circle in which he moves, are equally evanescent, and the shy, rugged, and tactless recluse often emerges on the strength of his genuine and abiding performances to a position in the eyes of the world which he never attained during ...
— Historical and Political Essays • William Edward Hartpole Lecky

... others will be able to produce similar melody himself. Nay, even if he can produce it one year it by no means follows that he will be able to produce it the next. Of all qualifications for writing poetry this inventive music is the most arbitrarily distributed, and the most evanescent. But it is the more important to dwell on its necessity, inasmuch as both good and bad poets are tempted to ignore it. The good poet prefers to ascribe his success to higher qualities; to his imagination, elevation of thought, descriptive faculty. ...
— Wordsworth • F. W. H. Myers

... gaze of the many eyes that turn upon the speaker, especially if he permits himself to steadily return that gaze. Most speakers have been conscious of this in a nameless thrill, a real something, pervading the atmosphere, tangible, evanescent, indescribable. All writers have borne testimony to the power of a speaker's eye in impressing an audience. This influence which we are now considering is the reverse of that picture—the power their eyes may exert upon him, especially before he begins to speak: after ...
— The Art of Public Speaking • Dale Carnagey (AKA Dale Carnegie) and J. Berg Esenwein

... Professor was of looking up dead statesmen, kings, and warriors. The young ladies certainly bore some resemblance to the type of American girl which one never fails to meet in travelling. They were dressed in the height of the fashion, pretty with the delicate evanescent beauty of too many of our girls, and all gifted with the loud voices, shrill laughter, and free-and-easy manners which so astonish decorous English matrons and maids. Ethel was evidently impressed with their style, as they had a man and maid at their beck and call, ...
— A Garland for Girls • Louisa May Alcott

... regarded as something wiser and nobler than an automaton, less perishable than a confection, more comforting and peace-producing than a fire-arm, a veritable comrade for man at his best, not so much prized for the vain and evanescent charm of her beauty as for the steadfastness and the incorruptible ...
— A String of Amber Beads • Martha Everts Holden

... unconscious for the time of the admiration she excites. There are many, no doubt, who look beyond the glittering symbols to the great truths of the Being whom they are intended to typify. The impression made by the Sabbath ceremonials of the Church strikes us as evanescent, more pleasing to the fancy than informing to the understanding. Still, if the Sabbath in Catholic countries is not wholly devoted to religious observances, neither are the week days wholly absorbed by business and by careless pleasures. ...
— Due South or Cuba Past and Present • Maturin M. Ballou

... a certainty born of her deep regard for Grace. To her it seemed that naught save the brightest of futures could come to her friend. Yet happiness is at best a fragile, evanescent thing. ...
— Grace Harlowe's Golden Summer • Jessie Graham Flower

... with my father's habits, as described by himself. When a difficulty or an objection occurred to him, he thought it of paramount importance to make a note of it instantly because he found hostile facts to be especially evanescent. ...
— The Life and Letters of Charles Darwin, Volume II • Francis Darwin

... by the tangible. As for belief in the divine Christ, there seems not a trace. A report has come down to us, enshrined in Newman's prose, that Napoleon once discoursed of the ineffable greatness of Christ, contrasting His enduring hold on the hearts of men with the evanescent rule of Alexander and Caesar. One hopes that the words were uttered; but they conflict with Napoleon's undoubted statements. Sometimes he spoke in utter uncertainty; at others, as one who wished to believe in Christianity and might perhaps be converted. But in the ...
— The Life of Napoleon I (Volumes, 1 and 2) • John Holland Rose

... the hands got to?" it asked, vigorous and evanescent at the same time, overcoming the strength of the wind, and swept ...
— Typhoon • Joseph Conrad

... sudden and momentous resolve turned was so subtle and delicately evanescent as scarcely to be susceptible of clearer portrayal. To be consistent, the weight of his revengeful sentiments should have been directed upon Sophie, for she it was who had played the most effective part in changing his nature, and swerving him ...
— Bressant • Julian Hawthorne

... helplessly into the young man's face. She was so fragile that she seemed but an evanescent ...
— The Heart of the Desert - Kut-Le of the Desert • Honore Willsie Morrow

... life." But though this too, was true, she hardly looked it. No one could have pointed out any sign of malady about her; only one would have said that there was nothing of her. And the colour on her face was so evanescent that he who watched her was inclined to think that she herself was like her colour. And she moved as though she was always on the vanishing point. "I'm very fond of eating," she had been heard to say. ...
— The Landleaguers • Anthony Trollope

... graceless strength of Goths and Vandals supplanted the supple vigor of the gymnast. The rude, migratory life of the Dark Ages needed not the gymnasium as a means of physical culture, and was too changeable and evanescent to establish permanent institutions. Chivalry afforded some exception. The profession of knighthood and the calling of the men-at-arms gave ample scope to warlike exercises, reduced to something like a science in armor, horses, and modes of combat. The tournament recalled somewhat the ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 3, No. 19, May, 1859 • Various

... which they can adopt. In women you have the sweep and wave of drapery, gentle undulations, summer-cloud floatings, soft, sinuous movements, the fluency of pliant forms, the willowy bend and rebound of lithe and lovely suppleness. It is grace generic,—the sublime, the evanescent mysticism of motion, without use, without aim, except its own overflowing and all-sufficing fascination. But when a man dances, it reminds me of that amusing French book called "Le Diable Boiteux," which has been or may be free-thinkingly ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 12, August, 1863, No. 70 - A Magazine of Literature, Art, and Politics • Various

... fleeting, Shadowy and evanescent, Scarce full orb'd before the crescent Tells us of their final setting. And soon our starry dreams are wreck'd, And all our earthly hopes sublime Lie stranded on the shores of Time, ...
— The Poets and Poetry of Cecil County, Maryland • Various

... that certain glass globes should be chemically prepared with one or other of the four elements, and for one month exposed to the beams of the sun. These preliminary steps being taken, the initiated immediately had a sight of innumerable beings of a luminous substance, but of thin and evanescent structure, that people the elements on all sides of us. Those who inhabited the air were called Sylphs; and those who dwelt in the earth bore the name of Gnomes; such as peopled the fire were Salamanders; and those who made their home in the waters were Undines. Each class appears ...
— Lives of the Necromancers • William Godwin



Words linked to "Evanescent" :   evanescence, evanesce



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