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Impiety

noun
(pl. impieties)
1.
Unrighteousness by virtue of lacking respect for a god.  Synonym: impiousness.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Impiety" Quotes from Famous Books



... to keep out monarchy cannot without impiety be denied, the holy Scriptures bearing witness that the Commonwealth of Israel, notwithstanding her agrarian, submitted her neck to the arbitrary yoke of ...
— The Commonwealth of Oceana • James Harrington

... from a cobbler, rose by degrees to be a colonel, and though a person of no parts either in body or mind, yet made by Cromwell one of his pageant lords. He was a fellow fit for any mischief, and capable of nothing else; a sordid lump of ignorance and impiety, and therefore the more fit to share in Cromwell's designs, and to act in that horrid murther of his Majesty. Upon the turn of the times, he ran away for fear of Squire Dun [the common hangman], and (by report) is since dead, and buried ...
— Notes and Queries, Number 68, February 15, 1851 • Various

... with which the generous minds of Greece were conversant, were held of little account, and the philosophy which dealt with such speculations was repeatedly proscribed, as a teacher of sedition and impiety. ...
— The History of Freedom • John Emerich Edward Dalberg-Acton

... never was such a man as Jesus, or show that he was a wicked impostor and deservedly lost his life. Show moreover, that there never were such men as the apostles of Jesus, or that they were likewise impostors, and all suffered death for their wicked impiety! Give the particulars of Saul's madly forsaking the honourable connexion in which he stood, for the sake of practising a fraud which produced him an immense ...
— A Series of Letters In Defence of Divine Revelation • Hosea Ballou

... stood close to that of Geordie Twatt, and she felt that in any emergency she was thus sure of one faithful friend. "A lone woman" in Margaret's position has in these days numberless objects of interest of which Margaret never dreamed. She would have thought it a kind of impiety to advise her minister, or meddle in church affairs. These simple parents attended themselves to the spiritual training of their children—there was no necessity for Sunday Schools, and they did not exist. She was not one of those women whom their friends call "beings," and who have deep and mysterious ...
— Winter Evening Tales • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... the scheme of Christian theology which was probably more or less common to the very various Churches which surrounded him. He had avowed this sweeping denial with a freedom which pained some friends, perhaps rather by its rashness than by its impiety, and he was apt to regard the procedure of theologians as a blasphemous twisting of the words of Christ. He rejected that belief in miracles and in the literally inspired accuracy of the Bible ...
— Abraham Lincoln • Lord Charnwood

... it to his father for a dollar a year and ostentatiously gave the dollar to the Lord—so ostentatiously, indeed, that when Henry Fenn gayly referred to Amos, Grant and Jasper as Father, Son and Holy Ghost, the town smiled at his impiety, but the holy Jasper boarded at the Hotel Sands, was made a partner at Wright & Perry's, and became a bank director at thirty. ...
— In the Heart of a Fool • William Allen White

... after all this injustice, and impiety on your parts, you have prosecuted that with the extreamest madness, which you esteemed criminal in your enemies, viz. To arrogate the supream power in a single person;{3} condemn men without Law; execute, ...
— An Apologie for the Royal Party (1659); and A Panegyric to Charles the Second (1661) • John Evelyn

... deduction should be made from their sufferings (which certainly was not the royal wish, nor likely to be grateful to God or salutary to religion), but by which all hopes of glory—that powerful incentive to their impiety—might be precluded. With regard to any suggested alterations in the council of state, or in the other two councils, the King was to be represented as unwilling to form any decision until he should hear, at length, from the Duchess Regent ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... pass, with my heresy, between a devotee and his saint; for they often shoot their prayers at a shrine almost quite across the church. But there seems to be no violation of etiquette in so doing. A woman begged of us in the Pantheon, and accused my wife of impiety for not giving her an alms. . . . . People of very decent appearance are often unexpectedly converted into beggars as you approach them; but in general they take a ...
— Passages From the French and Italian Notebooks, Complete • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... surely it concerns Francois Paradis. Hast Thou already guessed it, O Mary, full of grace? How might she frame this her desire without impiety? That he should be spared hardship in the woods ... That he should be true to his word and give up drinking and swearing ... That he return ...
— Maria Chapdelaine - A Tale of the Lake St. John Country • Louis Hemon

... priesthood; but the orthodox annalist closes his notice of his reign by the moral reflection that "even he who was an heretic, and doomed by his creed to perdition, obtained an exalted extent of supernatural power from having eschewed impiety and injustice."[1] ...
— Ceylon; an Account of the Island Physical, Historical, and • James Emerson Tennent

... the sky; Let ruling angels from their spheres be hurl'd, Being on being wreck'd, and world on world, Heav'n's whole foundations to the centre nod, And Nature trembles to the throne of God: All this dread Order break—for whom? for thee? Vile worm!—Oh, madness! pride! impiety! ...
— The Illustrated London Reading Book • Various

... isolated house where, under the grand silence of midnight, she decided alone her son's future, the spirit of the Basque ancestors passed, sombre and jealous also, disdainful of the stranger, fearful of impiety, of changes, of evolutions of races;—the spirit of the Basque ancestors, the old immutable spirit which still maintains that people with eyes turned toward the anterior ages; the mysterious antique spirit by which the children ...
— Ramuntcho • Pierre Loti

... no doubt," I replied, "one of those to whom the world is in the habit of giving the appellation of saints, whatever sense impiety on the one hand, or cant on the other, may attach ...
— Ellen Middleton—A Tale • Georgiana Fullerton

... person who had been already once baptized was not only in the eyes of the established church an impiety, it was in the eyes of the established law a capital crime, and the history of Anabaptism in Germany is the history of a long martyrdom. In Catholic and Protestant countries alike these radicals were persecuted. From Strasburg and Nuremberg they were expelled, in ...
— European Background Of American History - (Vol. I of The American Nation: A History) • Edward Potts Cheyney

... and play with prayer, Play with that fear, with that religious awe, Which keeps men free, and yet is man's great law! What can they but the worst of Atheists be Who, while they word it 'gainst impiety, Affront the throne of God with their false deeds? Alas! this wonder in the Atheist breeds. Are these the men that would the age reform, That Down with Superstition cry, and swarm This painted glass, that sculpture, to deface, But ...
— The Life of John Milton, Volume 5 (of 7), 1654-1660 • David Masson

... difference between your encomiums and my thoughts! For you Don Luis was the exemplary model of the priest, the missionary, the apostle, now preaching the gospel in distant lands, now endeavoring in Spain to elevate Christianity, so degraded in our day through the impiety of some, and the want of virtue, of charity, and of knowledge, of others. I, on the contrary, pictured him to myself handsome, loving, forgetting God for me, consecrating his life to me, giving me his soul, becoming my stay, my support, my sweet companion. I longed ...
— Pepita Ximenez • Juan Valera

... bestial inheritance into purity and light; and thus if a man can inherit evil from evil progenitors by the law of God, he is not a free agent in the matter; and it thus becomes a piece of sad impiety, or worse, to say that it was inconceivable agony to God to bear the sins which ...
— The Silent Isle • Arthur Christopher Benson

... destruction, and the desire of innovation, hatred of prejudices, and love of knowledge: he was destined to be the standard-bearer of destruction; his genius, although not the most elevated, yet the most comprehensive in France, has hitherto been only judged by fanatics or his enemies. Impiety deified his very vices; superstition anathematised his very virtues; in a word, despotism, when it again seized on the reins of government in France, felt that to reinstate tyranny it would be necessary ...
— History of the Girondists, Volume I - Personal Memoirs of the Patriots of the French Revolution • Alphonse de Lamartine

... shut himself in. The oracle had spoken: 'Wretched Romans, whither have ye strayed, and gone far from hope in God to put your trust in the Franks? Your city and your religion will perish together. You abandon the faith of your fathers and embrace impiety. Woe unto you in the day of judgment.' The words spread like wildfire and enflamed the excited crowd within and around the monastery. Anathemas, cursing all supporters of the union in the past, in the present, and in the future resounded on every hand. The answer of Gennadius was carried ...
— Byzantine Churches in Constantinople - Their History and Architecture • Alexander Van Millingen

... tree. The seeming similarity of his own execution struck his imagination, and brought a tardy but faint recollection of those lessons that had lost most of their efficacy in the wickedness and impiety of camps. His soul struggled for relief in that direction, but the present scene was too absorbing to admit of its lifting itself so far ...
— Oak Openings • James Fenimore Cooper

... enemy's fleet came in sight. Before a battle the Romans always consulted the sacred fowls that were carried with the army. Claudius was told that their augury was against a battle—they would not eat. "Then let them drink," he cried, and threw them into the sea. His impiety, as all felt it, was punished by an utter defeat, and he killed himself to avoid an enquiry. The war went on by land and sea all over and around Sicily, till at the end of twenty-four years peace was made, just after another great sea-fight, in which Rome had the victory. She made ...
— Young Folks' History of Rome • Charlotte Mary Yonge

... of the special care of Nebuchadrezzar, vv. 11ff., whereas in all probability his fate was decided, not by the king, but by his officers (ci. 3, 13, 14). But after making every deduction, these chapters remain as a historical source of the first rank. The section begins by revealing the reckless impiety of Jehoiakim in burning the prophecies of Jeremiah in 605 B.C., but the other chapters gather round the siege of Jerusalem, eighteen years later, and the events that followed it. They describe the cruel and successive imprisonments of the ...
— Introduction to the Old Testament • John Edgar McFadyen

... Siva or Mahadeo from the dust to carry his consort Parvati in a litter when she was tired; the first Mang was made by Mahadeo from his own sweat to castrate the divine bull Nandi when he was fractious, and his descendants have ever since followed the same calling, the impiety of mutilating the sacred bull in such a manner being thus excused by the divine sanction accorded to it. The first Mali or gardener gave a garland to Krishna. The first Chamar or tanner made sandals ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India—Volume I (of IV) • R.V. Russell

... only two years. Then the throne was usurped by Nergal-sharezer, who had married a daughter of Nebuchadrezzar, and was in high favour with the priests. He died in B.C. 556, leaving a child, whom the priestly chroniclers accuse of impiety towards the gods, and who was murdered three months after his accession. Then Nabu-nahid or Nabonidos, the son of Nabu-balasu-iqbi, another nominee of the priesthood, was placed on the throne. He was unrelated to the royal family, but proved to be a man of some energy ...
— Early Israel and the Surrounding Nations • Archibald Sayce

... religious authority, each consisting solely of obedience to God, were one and the same. (51) The dogmas of religion were not precepts, but laws and ordinances; piety was regarded as the same as loyalty, impiety as the same as disaffection. (52) Everyone who fell away from religion ceased to be a citizen, and was, on that ground alone, accounted an enemy: those who died for the sake of religion, were held to have died for ...
— A Theologico-Political Treatise [Part IV] • Benedict de Spinoza

... doubts into some minds. It was asserted, however, that this English-woman was rich, and that she had passed her life in traveling through every country in the world, because her family had thrown her off. Why had her family thrown her off? Because of her natural impiety? ...
— Selected Writings of Guy de Maupassant • Guy de Maupassant

... equality. "I have seen Fording myself, having driven there with the Carisbury Field Club, and felt sure it must be a source of temptation if not guarded against. That one man should live in such a house is an impiety; he is led to go about like Nebuchadnezzar, saying: 'Is not this great Babylon that I ...
— The Nebuly Coat • John Meade Falkner

... ceremony lasts, after which the mountains are objects of pilgrimage till the twenty-eighth day of August. For the rest of the year the summits are held to be shut, the gods being then in conclave, to disturb whom were the height of impiety. A pleasing coincidence of duty and pleasure, that the scaling of the peaks should be enjoined to pilgrims at the times of easiest ascent! Preparatory to the procession all the paths of approach are repaired. It was this repairing ...
— Noto, An Unexplored Corner of Japan • Percival Lowell

... Oh, such a thing! the impiety of it startles me—to wrong so good, so fair a creature, and one that loves you tenderly—'tis a barbarity of barbarities, and nothing could be ...
— The Comedies of William Congreve - Volume 1 [of 2] • William Congreve

... was slightly indisposed. The nature of her indisposition she revealed to Julia alone. "That young lady keeps me on thorns. I never feel secure she will not say or do something extravagant or unusual: she seems to suspect sobriety and good taste of being in league with impiety. Here I succeed in bridling her a little; but encounter a female enthusiast in her own house? merci! After all, there must be something good in her, since she is your friend, and you are hers. But I have something more serious to say before you go ...
— Hard Cash • Charles Reade

... thoughtfully. "No doubt the ignorant mass of the people require something material to worship. They need to believe in gods who will punish impiety and wrong and reward well-doing; and the religion of Egypt, as they believe it, is better suited to their daily wants than the worship of a deity so mighty and great and good that their intellect would fail ...
— The Cat of Bubastes - A Tale of Ancient Egypt • G. A. Henty

... nudging, intent crowd of listeners, pushing against the barriers of a low court. Long rows of jurors are sitting on their benches; the "King Archon" is on the president's stand, and some poor wight is being arraigned on a charge of "Impiety"[*]; while on the walls behind stand graved and ancient laws ...
— A Day In Old Athens • William Stearns Davis

... "When heathen impiety, loathsome and dread, With a chaos of darkness our Spain overspread, Thou wast the first light which dispell'd with its flames The hell-born obscurity, glorious ...
— The Bible in Spain • George Borrow

... to contemporaries who have passed through the same succession of emotional experience, and it is highly probable that Caturras and Gaspar, pieces as witty as anything in Bocage but free from Bocage's coarse impiety, will always interest literary students. But it is as the singer of love that Joao de Deus will delight posterity as he delighted his own generation. The elegiac music of Rachel and of Marina, the melancholy of ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 8, Slice 3 - "Destructors" to "Diameter" • Various

... crime— We who perceive the guilt and feel the shame— O thou Delight of Men, Janardana? By overthrow of houses perisheth Their sweet continuous household piety, And-rites neglected, piety extinct— Enters impiety upon that home; Its women grow unwomaned, whence there spring Mad passions, and the mingling-up of castes, Sending a Hell-ward road that family, And whoso wrought its doom by wicked wrath. Nay, and the souls of ...
— The Bhagavad-Gita • Sir Edwin Arnold

... joke or two, expressed his opinion on the subject of drink that the wine referred to in the Bible was not alcoholic liquor, produced several quotations, told a story, and, as he was leaving, made a dark allusion to the danger of bad company, to certain excursions in the country, to the spirit of impiety, to the impurity of dancing, and the filthy lusts of the flesh. He seemed to be addressing his remarks to the age in general and not to Anna. He stopped for a moment, coughed, got up, bade Anna give his respectful compliments to M. Braun, made a joke in Latin, bowed, ...
— Jean-Christophe Journey's End • Romain Rolland

... concealed under the appearance of virtue in the beginning of his reign. In less than eight months, however, every trace of moderation and clemency vanished; while furious passions, unexampled avarice, and capricious cruelty, reigned uncontrolled; and pride, impiety, lust, and avarice, appeared in ...
— Pinnock's Improved Edition of Dr. Goldsmith's History of Rome • Oliver Goldsmith

... Cassette replied with a sudden turn of her masked face and a murmur of surprise and protest against this impiety. A low, merry laugh came out of the Monk's cowl, and the Huguenotte let her form sink a little in her chair with a ...
— The Grandissimes • George Washington Cable

... their enemies with steel or powder, held themselves justified in doing so, if possible, by vituperation, culumny, and every engine of moral torture. But a far more terrible weapon, and one which made Vesalius rage, and it may be for once in his life tremble, was the charge of impiety and heresy. The Inquisition was a very ugly place. It was very easy to get into it, especially for a Netherlander: but not so easy to get out. Indeed Vesalius must have trembled, when he saw his master, Charles V., himself take ...
— Health and Education • Charles Kingsley

... irreverent and irreligious than the community which in respect to diversity of creeds it resembles. It would be a fearful portent if thorough study of nature and of man in all his attributes and works, such as befits a university, led scholars to impiety. But it does not; on the contrary, such study fills men with humility and awe, by bringing them on every hand face to face with inscrutable mystery and infinite power. The whole work of a university is uplifting, ...
— The History Of University Education In Maryland • Bernard Christian Steiner

... the siege of Colchester, "to encourage the soldiers with predictions of speedy victory." Still—though he believed in greater absurdities—his attitude towards such matters was that of his chosen motto, Vacate et Videte. "To rely too far upon that vaine art I judge to be rather folly than impiety." As with regard to spirits and witches, he says, "I only reserve my assent." That he was not altogether absorbed in the transmutation of metals in his laboratory practice, and yet that he dabbled in it, makes him historically interesting. ...
— The Closet of Sir Kenelm Digby Knight Opened • Kenelm Digby

... French Revolution marked the darkest hour of this time; yet it was the hour which preceded the dawn. It was the culminating point of the infidelity of kings, priests, and people; the visible expression and embodiment of the mind of France, long tutored by falsehood and impiety; the letting loose of Satan on earth, that all might see and wonder at the Beast! That Revolution inscribed lessons in letters of blood for the Church and for the nations of the world to learn. Christians ...
— Parish Papers • Norman Macleod

... the critical hypothesis this is not the fault of the Iliad, for Book IX. is declared to be "late," and of the same date as late parts of the Odyssey. Achilles is not less open to moral reproach in his abominable cruelty and impiety, as shown in his sacrifice of prisoners of war and his treatment of dead Hector, in Iliad, XXIII., XXIV. But these Books also are said to be as late ...
— Homer and His Age • Andrew Lang

... see,' says the most reverend author, 'that for some time past the most extraordinary efforts are made in France to spread impiety, immorality, the most anti-social theories, under the pretext of spreading education. No longer as formerly, it is in newspapers and books that religion, morality, and the eternal principles of good order are attacked with the ...
— Public School Education • Michael Mueller

... one unchanging authoritative source, the Gospels and the writings of the Apostles; faith and authority took the place of reason; and any attempt to question the injunctions of the Bible was regarded as an act of impiety, to be punished accordingly. And as the various regulations about women had now a divine sanction, the permanence of ...
— A Short History of Women's Rights • Eugene A. Hecker

... but they have sincerity in them, and there is one line which shows, I think, that Mary, young as she was, already watched her heart, lest that fatal pride should invade it; that sin by which, we are told, Satan fell from his high place, and which, on earth, is sure to lead to selfishness and impiety. ...
— The Young Lord and Other Tales - to which is added Victorine Durocher • Camilla Toulmin

... of impiety and avarice have stained the virtues or the reputation of Tribonian. In a bigoted and persecuting court the principal minister was accused of a secret aversion to the Christian faith, and was supposed to entertain the sentiments of an atheist and a pagan, which have been ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 4 • Various

... forecast for thy children!" He is a scoffer and skeptic; truly a spokesman of the Suitors in their relation to the Gods, in whom they can have no living faith; through long wickedness they imagine that there is no retribution, they have come to believe their own lie. Impiety, then, is the chief fact of this speech, which really denies the world-government and the whole lesson of this poem. Thus the divine warning is contemned, the call to a change of conduct ...
— Homer's Odyssey - A Commentary • Denton J. Snider

... Obey'd or not, 'twas equal destiny. So fatal beauty is, and full of waste. That neither wanton can be safe, nor chaste. What then should man pray for? what is't that he Can beg of Heaven, without impiety? Take my advice: first to the gods commit All cares; for they things competent and fit For us foresee; besides, man is more dear To them than to himself; we blindly here, Led by the world and lust, ...
— Poems of Henry Vaughan, Silurist, Volume II • Henry Vaughan

... that he first be beaten with rods at the cart's end, and afterwards have his tongue cut out.[79] Even the clearest evidence of insanity did not suffice to remove or even mitigate the penalties of impiety. A poor, crazy woman, who had broken the consecrated wafer when administered to her in her illness, and had applied to it some offensive but absurd epithet, was unhesitatingly condemned to the stake. An appeal to a superior court procuring no reversal of ...
— The Rise of the Hugenots, Vol. 1 (of 2) • Henry Martyn Baird

... threw herself on Warwick's breast, he continued, "And how camest thou to learn that Margaret disowns a deed that, if done by her command, would render my union with her cause a sacrilegious impiety to the dead?" ...
— The Last Of The Barons, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... was now favorable to an enthusiastic belief in a divine interposition in favor of the party that had hitherto been unsuccessful and oppressed. The humiliations which had befallen the French royal family and nobility were looked on as the just judgments of God upon them for their vice and impiety. The misfortunes that had come upon France as a nation were believed to have been drawn down by national sins. The English, who had been the instruments of heaven's wrath against France, seemed now, by their pride and cruelty, to be fitting ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 07 • Various

... the impiety of this refusal. The Padrona believed in priests, and confessed herself to them. But all women did that. It could not be of much consequence. And yet his heart felt oppressed for a moment—at the thought what ...
— Nostromo: A Tale of the Seaboard • Joseph Conrad

... its untruthfulness, and to unmask those who are guilty of its imposture." Then follows a resolution for the especial consideration of slave-owners:—"Resolved—That it is the climax of audacity and impiety for this nation to receive the Bible as the inspired Word of God, and then to make it a penal offence to give it to any of the millions who are held as chattel slaves on its soil, thus conspiring to make them miserable here and hereafter." Then follows ...
— Lands of the Slave and the Free - Cuba, The United States, and Canada • Henry A. Murray

... St. Hildegarde ([Cross] 1178), "shall have its hour; the last of the seven epochs symbolized by the seven days of creation has arrived, the judgments of God are about to be accomplished; the empire and the papacy, sunk into impiety, shall crumble away together.... But upon their ruins shall appear a new nation of God, a nation of prophets illuminated from on high, living in poverty and solitude. Then the divine mysteries shall be revealed, and the saying of Joel shall be fulfilled; the Holy Spirit shall ...
— Life of St. Francis of Assisi • Paul Sabatier

... the altar. Now a supreme act of insolent impiety; Samson, too, shall sacrifice to Dagon. A boy is told to lead him where all can witness his humiliation. Samson feels that the time for retribution upon his enemies is come. He asks to be led between the marble pillars that support the roof of the temple. ...
— A Second Book of Operas • Henry Edward Krehbiel

... effects of these calumnies confined to public scorn—they often went to the pecuniary ruin of families; sometimes, as in the case of Socrates, afterwards to the death of their object. At length the miscreants proceeded to open impiety, and held up the gods, no less than ...
— The Mirror of Taste, and Dramatic Censor, Vol. I, No. 4, April 1810 • Various

... many Norman innovations, continued wedded to the use of the common law. King Stephen immediately published a proclamation[c], forbidding the study of the laws, then newly imported from Italy; which was treated by the monks[d] as a piece of impiety, and, though it might prevent the introduction of the civil law process into our courts of justice, yet did not hinder the clergy from reading and teaching it in their own schools ...
— Commentaries on the Laws of England - Book the First • William Blackstone

... a charming modernisation of a classical legend. Jupiter and Vulcan, visiting earth for the purpose of punishing the impiety of the Phrygians, are driven by a storm to take refuge in the cottage of an aged couple, Philemon and Baucis. Pleased with the hospitable treatment which he receives at their hands, and touched by the mutual affection of the old people, which time has done nothing to impair, ...
— The Opera - A Sketch of the Development of Opera. With full Descriptions - of all Works in the Modern Repertory • R.A. Streatfeild

... as the victims of the rapacity of their landlords—on whom were poured the full phials of Anti-corn-law wrath. The following are some of the scalding drops let fall upon their devoted heads—"Monster of impiety!" "inhuman fiend!" "heartless brutes!" "rapacious harpies!" "relentless demons!" "plunderers of the people!" "merciless footpads!" "murderers!" "swindlers!" "insatiable!" "insolent!" "flesh-mongering!" ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXXXIX. January, 1844. Vol. LV. • Various

... they ceased to breathe in her periods; they groaned as the intensity of her fervor pressed upon them for response that they could not shape in words; they wept, they shouted, they prophesied, and over them swept ever the witchery of her wonderful voice, preaching impiety—the ...
— The City of Delight - A Love Drama of the Siege and Fall of Jerusalem • Elizabeth Miller

... consecrated filial duty by making it the basis of the Chinese moral code. His hand was the finishing touch of fossilification. For since the sage set his seal upon the system no one has so much as dreamt of changing it. The idea of confuting Confucius would be an act of impiety such as no Chinaman could possibly commit. Not that the inadmissibility of argument is due really to the authority of the philosopher, but that it lies ingrained in the character of the people. Indeed the genius of ...
— The Soul of the Far East • Percival Lowell

... their fathers; at length it was deemed sacrilege to doubt these pandects in any one particular; even the errors, that had crept into them with time, were beheld with reverential awe; he that ventured to reason upon them, was looked upon as an enemy to the commonwealth; as one whose impiety drew down upon them the vengeance of these adored beings, to which alone imagination had given birth; not contented with adopting the rituals, with following the ceremonies invented by themselves, one community ...
— The System of Nature, Vol. 2 • Baron D'Holbach

... was dwelt upon by the preacher, from a text preached upon the chapter that relates to the conversion of Saul, and the cases were cited as parallel. Let the opponents of the Established Church rail at it as they will, scenes of such wickedness and impiety could never have happened within ...
— Rattlin the Reefer • Edward Howard

... the reformer, the ancient city, evangelized by St. Cromadaire, and enlightened by St. Gibbosine, fell into disorder and dissolution; every sort of extravagance and impiety was committed there, by day and by night. In vain did the great St. Nicolas warn his flock by exhortations, threats, and fulminations. The evil increased unchecked, and it was sad to see the contagion ...
— The Miracle Of The Great St. Nicolas - 1920 • Anatole France

... through France shortly before Bonaparte's accession to the throne he received the addresses of the Priests and Prefects, who vied with each other in the grossness and impiety of their adulation. The Prefect of the Pas de Calais seems to have borne away the palm from all his brethren. On Napoleon's entrance into his department, he addressed him in the following manner:—"Tranquil with respect to our fate, we know ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction, Vol. 13, - Issue 377, June 27, 1829 • Various

... sedition, to this honorable employment, although in truth it was with your approbation that he obtained it; for though God were the donor, yet do we not offend when we think fit to accept it with your good-will; yet would it have been an instance of impiety not to have taken that honorable employment when he offered it; nay, it had been exceedingly unreasonable, when God had thought fit any one should have it for all time to come, and had made it secure and firm to him, to have ...
— The Antiquities of the Jews • Flavius Josephus

... suffering. O my lords! As you are great, be pitifully good: Who cannot condemn rashness in cold blood? To kill, I grant, is sin's extremest gust; But, in defence, by mercy, 'tis most just. To be in anger is impiety; But who is man that is not angry? Weigh ...
— The Life of Timon of Athens • William Shakespeare [Craig edition]

... The author of our nature has written it strongly in that nature, and has promulgated the same law in his written word, that man shall eat his bread by his labour; and I am persuaded, that no man, and no combination of men, for their own ideas of their particular profit, can, without great impiety, undertake to say, that he SHALL NOT do so; that they have no sort of right, either to prevent the labour, or ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... violence; abusing parents; fraudulently injuring another; giving false evidence; speaking disrespectfully to the aged; marrying an elder brother's wife; putting your foot on, or walking over, a man's body; speaking profanely of religion—are acts of impiety.[198] ...
— Sex and Society • William I. Thomas

... ille—reddat; as far as the sense is concerned, this sentence forms the apodosis to the preceding wish: 'would that I could see him in like circumstances, and would that at length the gods opened their eyes; then he would surely have to pay a heavy penalty for his impiety, for the death of my brother and for my sufferings.' The present subjunctive in the apodosis corresponds with the same tense in the protasis, and differs very little from the future indicative. See Zumpt, ...
— De Bello Catilinario et Jugurthino • Caius Sallustii Crispi (Sallustius)

... were not omnipresent, yet God, who was so, imparted to them the prayers offered up, and then they used their interference with Him to grant them. 'That is, father, (said C. in reply)—excuse my seeming levity, for I mean no impiety—that is; I have a deaf and dumb wife, who yet understands me, and I her, by signs. You have a favour to ask of me, and want my wife's interference; so you communicate your request to me, who impart it to her, and she, by signs back again, begs me to ...
— Specimens of the Table Talk of S.T.Coleridge • Coleridge

... substance of Shintoism. The political bearing of such a doctrine upon the then existing status of the country is apparent. The Emperor, who is a god, the fountain of all virtue, honor, and authority, is now a prisoner at the court of Kioto, under the iron hand of the Tokugawa Shoguns. This state of impiety and irreverence can never be tolerated by the devout Shintoists. The Shogun must be dethroned and the Emperor raised to power. Here the line of arguments of the Shintoists meets with that of the scholars we have noted above. Thus ...
— The Constitutional Development of Japan 1863-1881 • Toyokichi Iyenaga

... perpetrated? This is but an amateur opinion, monsieur; I offer it as an individual, not as a priest speaking on the part of the Church. But it may serve to account for a real difficulty, and may be held without impiety. Of one thing at least we may rest assured as Christian men; that the souls of the dead, whether of saints or sinners, are in God's safe keeping, and walk the earth no more." Then I shook hands with M. Pierre, and we parted. And after ...
— Dreams and Dream Stories • Anna (Bonus) Kingsford

... against this family. They were, as I say, glad to encourage any friends; and therefore, since their accession, there is no instance of any man being kept back on account of his bad principles; and hence this inundation of impiety[737].' I observed that Mr. Hume, some of whose writings were very unfavourable to religion, was, however, a Tory. JOHNSON. 'Sir, Hume is a Tory by chance[738] as being a Scotchman; but not upon a principle ...
— Life Of Johnson, Volume 5 • Boswell

... would doubtless have been thus overborne. History tells us of many greater statesmen than he, but of few better men. Disinterested almost to a fault, stainless in his private character as well as unquestioned in his public integrity, truly religious in a time given over to atheism and impiety, conscientious even to the smallest matters in public as well as private life, and moderate when everything about him was in extremes,—well might Madame de Stael be proud of her father, and fond to effusion of ...
— Home Life of Great Authors • Hattie Tyng Griswold

... Its own small pasture, almost its own sky! But covet not the Abode: forbear to sigh, As many do, repining while they look; Intruders—who would tear from Nature's book This precious leaf with harsh impiety. Think what the home must be if it were thine, Even thine, though few thy wants! Roof, window, door, The very flowers are sacred to the Poor, The roses to the porch which they entwine: Yea, all that now enchants thee, ...
— Wordsworth • F. W. H. Myers

... Shakespeare, Rowe, and Mr. Addison. Besides the many Reasons I have already given in Relation to the French, I might add, that their Language is less fit for Tragedy, and the Servitude of their Rhime enervates the Force of the Diction. And as for Our Comedies, they are so full of Lewdness, Impiety and Immorality, and of such complicated perplexed Plots, so stuffed with Comparisons and Similies, so replenished with Endeavours at Wit and Smartness, that I cannot forbear saying, that whoever sees or reads them for Improvement (I make some ...
— Some Remarks on the Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark, Written by Mr. William Shakespeare (1736) • Anonymous

... Wynkyn de Worde. He turned away his eyes from that corner of the bookcase where he had good reason to suppose them to be. He would have to look at them some time, meanwhile he shrank from approaching them as from some gross impiety. His father had written to him several times, making special inquiries after the Aldine Plato, the Neapolitan Horace, and the Aurea Legenda of Wynkyn de Worde. He replied with generalities in a guarded manner. ...
— The Divine Fire • May Sinclair

... "Impiety did not move me, great goddess," said Hercules in his own defense, "but only the direst necessity. How otherwise could I hold my own ...
— Myths and Legends of All Nations • Various

... unmanned:" and when the Hermit says, that he had "beheld the ocean in wildest rage, yet ne'er before saw a storm so dreadful, such horrid flashes of lightning, and such claps of thunder, were never in my remembrance." And Don John's burst of startling impiety is equally intelligible in its motive, as ...
— Biographia Literaria • Samuel Taylor Coleridge

... administer the office entrusted to them, asking God for mercy, they plead the cause of the human race, and together with the whole Church ask and pray that the unbelievers may receive the faith, that the idolaters may be freed from the errors of their impiety, that the veil be lifted from the heart of the Jews, and they be enabled to perceive the light of truth, that the heretics may return to their senses by a true perception of the Catholic faith, that the schismatics may receive the spirit of reborn charity, that the sinners be granted ...
— Grace, Actual and Habitual • Joseph Pohle

... him Cleanor the Orchomenian arose and spoke thus: "You see, soldiers, the perjury and impiety of the king; and you see also the faithlessness of Tissaphernes, who, after telling us that he was a neighbour of the Greeks, and would esteem it the highest privilege to save us, and after having given us his right hand as a pledge, has himself deceived and made prisoners our generals, ...
— The First Four Books of Xenophon's Anabasis • Xenophon

... 'a new and improved edition.' This was the only remarkable adventure of Mr. Tatler's brief existence; unless we consider as such a silly Chaldee manuscript in imitation of Blackwood, and a letter of reproof from a divinity student on the impiety of the same dull effusion. He laments the near approach of his end in pathetic terms. 'How shall we summon up sufficient courage,' says he, 'to look for the last time on our beloved little devil and his inestimable proof-sheet? How shall we be able to ...
— Lay Morals • Robert Louis Stevenson

... prevail against the Church, our soul cannot but feel excruciating pain, upon considering how daring outrages against divine and sacred things daily flow from the unbridled licentiousness, the perverse effrontery and impiety of the press. Now in this pestilence of corrupt books which invades us on all sides, the work entitled Institutes of Ecclesiastical Law, by John Nepomue Nuytz, Professor in the Royal University of Turin, as also the work entitled Essays on Ecclesiastical ...
— The International Monthly Magazine - Volume V - No II • Various

... stereotyped the one which he has chosen is the worst, because in it the greatest amount of insincerity is possible. There is a Tartarus in front of him as well as an Olympus; a hideous possibility very near him of insincere impiety merely for the purpose of startling; of lawless fancy merely for the purpose of glittering; and a still more hideous possibility of a revulsion to insincere cant, combined with the same lawless fancy, ...
— Literary and General Lectures and Essays • Charles Kingsley

... pupil of Anaximenes, was born at Clazomenae, in Ionia, about B.C. 499. He removed to Athens at the time of the Persian war, where he became intimate with Pericles, who defended him, though unsuccessfully, when he was prosecuted for impiety: he was fined five talents, and banished from the city; on which he retired to Lampsacus, where he died at the age of 72. He differed from his predecessors of the Ionic School, and sought for a higher cause of all things than matter: this cause he considered to be {GREEK SMALL ...
— The Academic Questions • M. T. Cicero

... speculations. He certainly does not wish to go as far as the honest carpenter in the "Miller's Tale," who glories in his incredulity of aught besides his credo, and who yet is afterwards befooled by the very impostor of whose astrological pursuits he had reprehended the impiety. "Men," he says, "should know nothing of that which is private to God. Yea, blessed be alway a simple man who knows nothing but only his belief." In his little work "On the Astrolobe," Chaucer speaks with calm reasonableness of superstitions in which his spirit ...
— Chaucer • Adolphus William Ward

... was enshrined. A later stadium of the evolution—which, of course, was never felt to be such—might naturally cause the free and easy views and lax practices which once were orthodox and universal to assume the odious form of heresy and impiety, and a laudable respect for the author of revelation was held to impose the sacred duty of bringing the documentary records of ancient practices into harmony with present theories. This was especially true of the Books of Job and Ecclesiastes, ...
— The Sceptics of the Old Testament: Job - Koheleth - Agur • Emile Joseph Dillon

... calling to mind and remembering the selfsame thing, I cannot sufficiently marvel at the great madness of some men, at so great impiety of their blinded hearts, lastly, at so great a licentious desire of error, that they be not content with the rule of faith once delivered us, and received from our ancestors, but do every day search and seek for new doctrine, ever desirous to add ...
— Historical Sketches, Volume I (of 3) • John Henry Newman

... as one would say, healthy; but so sound as things that are hollow: thy bones are hollow; impiety has made a feast of ...
— Measure for Measure - The Works of William Shakespeare [Cambridge Edition] [9 vols.] • William Shakespeare

... to strike, to take revenge, to do evil, to steal, to tell lies, to deceive, to blaspheme; carelessness about the children, intemperance, luxury, excessive prodigality, drunkenness, uncleanness, immodesty, application to magic and witchcraft, impiety, with several other causes. By legitimate causes we do not here mean judicial causes, but such as are legitimate in regard to the other married partner; separation from the house also is seldom ordained in a court ...
— The Delights of Wisdom Pertaining to Conjugial Love • Emanuel Swedenborg

... of Raphael, and of all men not called to the altar, are collateral helps not to be despised by the ministers of the Gospel.... All the arts and sciences ought to be employed in one confederacy against the prevailing torrent of vice and impiety; and it will be no small step in the progress of religion, if it is as evident as it ought to be, that he wants the best sense a man can have, who is cold to the "Beauty of Holiness."'[925] Tillotson, and other favourite writers of Steele's ...
— The English Church in the Eighteenth Century • Charles J. Abbey and John H. Overton

... opposes God's true character. Under the influence of this principle, men depart from truth, it being itself the greatest practical lie in nature, as it sets up that which is comparatively nothing above universal existence. Self-love is the source of all profaneness and impiety in the world, and of all pride and ambition among men, which is nothing but selfishness, acted out in this particular way. This is the foundation of all covetousness and sensuality, as it blinds people's eyes, contracts their hearts, and ...
— The Book of Religions • John Hayward

... The upper classes were coarse, drunken, and ill-mannered. Bribery and corruption on the grossest scale were the principal means for getting into Parliament. Mr. Dowdeswell, M.P. for Worcestershire, said to the Commons, "You have turned out a member for impiety and obscenity. What halfdozen members of this House ever meet over a convivial bottle, that their discourse is entirely free from obscenity, ...
— Thrift • Samuel Smiles

... to Rome on business of his order, he devoutly visited all the holy places for the good of his soul, and was almost tempted to wish that his father and mother were dead, so that he might free them from purgatory by his pious observances. Yet he was shocked by the impiety of the Italian churchmen and the scandalous stories about popes Alexander VI and Julius II, the latter of whom was just then engaged in his warlike expeditions into northern Italy. The evidences of immorality on the part ...
— An Introduction to the History of Western Europe • James Harvey Robinson

... whilst beneath the shade of the tree of liberty was instituted universal slavery; and that the most Christian, as well as the most civilized of all nations, had fallen down to the lowest limits of impiety ...
— Pius IX. And His Time • The Rev. AEneas MacDonell

... cities and fertile country. Here Mr. Shaw supposes Pima lay (perhaps upon the river of Kiria). At Pima itself, in A. D. 644, there was a story of the destruction of a city lying further north, a judgment on the luxury and impiety of the people and their king, who, shocked at the eccentric aspect of a holy man, had caused him to be buried in sand up ...
— The Travels of Marco Polo Volume 1 • Marco Polo and Rustichello of Pisa

... be avenged on such a nation as this?" who pretend to be teachers of the people in goodness, when, as for the most part of them, they are the men that at this day do harden their hearers in their sins, by giving them such ill examples that none goeth beyond them for impiety? As for example, Would a parishioner learn to be proud? he or she need look no further than to the priest, his wife, and family; for there is a notable pattern before them. Would the people learn to be wanton? they may also see a pattern among their teachers. Would they ...
— The Riches of Bunyan • Jeremiah Rev. Chaplin

... cannot respect without courtesy to their creed. To this point Ben-Hur had arrived. Neither the years in Rome nor those in the galley had made any impression upon his religious faith; he was yet a Jew. In his view, nevertheless, it was not an impiety to look for the beautiful ...
— Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ • Lew Wallace

... race of men who had now the sacred element of fire. But he knew that Prometheus had stolen this fire even from his own altar and had given it to men. And he thought on how he might punish the great Titan god for his impiety. ...
— The Golden Fleece and the Heroes who Lived Before Achilles • Padraic Colum

... moment terrified at his denunciations; but no sooner had he left the church than he ordered the altar at which the saint had stood to be demolished; and a priest to proclaim and command the adherence of all persons to whatever pope their duke had adopted; but this impiety was signally visited, for the priest fell down dead at the altar as he was uttering the words. Also the dean, under whose auspices St. Bernard's altar had been destroyed, fell sick immediately, and died mad and in despair, for he cut his throat in his bed: besides which, one of the refractory ...
— Barn and the Pyrenees - A Legendary Tour to the Country of Henri Quatre • Louisa Stuart Costello

... whilst as craft deceives, And is deceiv'd: whilst man doth ransack man And builds on blood, and rises by distress; And th' inheritance of desolation leaves To great-expecting hopes: he looks thereon, As from the shore of peace, with unwet eye, And bears no venture in impiety." ...
— A History of English Literature - Elizabethan Literature • George Saintsbury

... man eminently fitted to close an old age and to inaugurate a new, to demonstrate the paradoxical situation of the Popes by the inexorable logic of his practical impiety, and to fuse two conflicting world-forces in the cynicism of supreme corruption. The Emperors of the Julian house had exhibited the extreme of sensual insolence in their autocracy. What they desired ...
— Renaissance in Italy, Volume 1 (of 7) • John Addington Symonds

... be found, that they every-where disclaim the Impiety of such as endeavour to make a Religion to their Practices; and each upon himself, and very often make such Reflections upon each other, and, / upon his Actions, as reasonable Beings, who disbelieve not a future State ...
— Clarissa: Preface, Hints of Prefaces, and Postscript • Samuel Richardson

... was not uncommon for saints of both sexes, if they had suffered from some unjust neglect, to come and complain to some pious person of the wrong being done them on earth. They appeared possibly to a monk, to a peasant or a citizen, denounced the impiety of the faithful in terms urgent and sometimes violent, and commanded him to reinstate their worship and restore their sanctuary. And this is what Madame Saint Catherine did. In the year 1375 she entrusted a knight of the neighbourhood of Fierbois, one Jean Godefroy, ...
— The Life of Joan of Arc, Vol. 1 and 2 (of 2) • Anatole France

... Pagans was soon succeeded by resentment; and the most pious of men were exposed to the unjust but dangerous imputation of impiety. Malice and prejudice concurred in representing the Christians as a society of atheists, who, by the most daring attack on the religious constitution of the empire, had merited the severest animadversion of the civil magistrate. They had separated ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 2 • Edward Gibbon

... Why, trow'st thou, Warwick, That Clarence is so harsh, so blunt, unnatural, To bend the fatal instruments of war Against his brother and his lawful king? Perhaps thou wilt object my holy oath; To keep that oath were more impiety Than Jephtha's when he sacrific'd his daughter. I am so sorry for my trespass made That, to deserve well at my brother's hands, I here proclaim myself thy mortal foe, With resolution, whereso'er I meet thee— As I will meet thee, if thou stir abroad— To plague ...
— King Henry VI, Third Part • William Shakespeare [Rolfe edition]

... great influence over the vulgar, but even to extort the half-contemptuous admiration of scholars. Yet it was long before he ceased to be tormented by an impulse which urged him to utter words of horrible impiety in the pulpit.[4] Bunyan was finally relieved from the internal sufferings which had embittered his life by sharp persecution from without. He had been five years a preacher when the Restoration put it in the power of the Cavalier ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 4, Part 4 - "Bulgaria" to "Calgary" • Various

... "axiom in morals and politics" can be found so monstrous a combination of ignorance, injustice, falsehood, and impiety? Ignorant of the meaning of an "axiom"; denying the truths of science; falsifying history; setting above the Constitution the most odious theory of tyranny, long before exploded; scoffing at the rules of justice and sentiments of humanity,—he ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 88, February, 1865 • Various

... excuse Father Rush for any apparent impiety, I must add that, by "the Lord," he means ...
— Charles O'Malley, The Irish Dragoon, Volume 1 (of 2) • Charles Lever

... public affairs, as if they were impatient of the counsels and experience of their fathers. No country can prosper, where the ordinary mode of transacting the business connected with the root of the government, commences with this impiety." ...
— Home as Found • James Fenimore Cooper

... Roman Nation, that he could not chuse but tell them, that all other Crimes put together could not equalize theirs: For they were guilty of Murder, in not suffering those to be born which should proceed from them; of Impiety, in causing the Names and Honours of their Ancestors to cease; and of Sacrilege, in destroying their Kind, which proceeded from the immortal Gods, and Human Nature, the principal thing consecrated to 'em: Therefore ...
— The Spectator, Volumes 1, 2 and 3 - With Translations and Index for the Series • Joseph Addison and Richard Steele

... peace-offerings;—let us imitate so great an example:—let us make our digestive receptacles a temple, to which we will consecrate the choicest goods we possess;—let us conceive no pecuniary sacrifice too great, which procures for our altar an acceptable gift;—let us deem it an impiety to hesitate, if a sauce seems extravagant, or an ortolan too dear; and let our last act in this sublunary existence, be a solemn festival in ...
— Pelham, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... eight millions sterling; yet they affected to appear as deliverers among the people whom they were thus cruelly plundering; and they distributed portraits of Buonaparte, with the blasphemous inscription, "This is the true likeness of the holy saviour of the world!" The people, detesting the impiety, and groaning beneath the exactions of these perfidious robbers, were ready to join any regular force that should come to their assistance; but they dreaded Cardinal Ruffo's rabble, and declared they would resist ...
— The Life of Horatio Lord Nelson • Robert Southey

... republican party. These were his true principles, tho' he had disguised them, for deceiving unwary readers. And this set of notions came to spread much. The novelty and boldness of them set many on reading them. The impiety of them was acceptable to men of corrupt minds, which were but too much prepared to receive them by the extravagancies of the late times. So this set of men at Cambridge studied to assert, and examine the principles ...
— Characters from 17th Century Histories and Chronicles • Various



Words linked to "Impiety" :   piety, ungodliness, irreligion, unrighteousness, undutifulness, godlessness, irreligiousness



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