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Illiterate   /ɪlˈɪtərət/   Listen
Illiterate

adjective
1.
Not able to read or write.
2.
Uneducated in the fundamentals of a given art or branch of learning; lacking knowledge of a specific field.  Synonym: ignorant.  "He is musically illiterate"
3.
Lacking culture, especially in language and literature.



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"Illiterate" Quotes from Famous Books



... is a symbol that provides excellent material for clues to tricks and mannerisms. It varies in form from a mere v-shaped tick of almost indeterminate character to an ornate thing of loops and flourishes. It is very sparingly employed by illiterate persons, and some educated writers avoid its use under the impression that, like the abbreviation of words, it is vulgar. In a few high-class ladies' schools its use is sternly repressed, and there are many fluent and habitual writers who never employ this sign. This in itself supplies a ...
— The Detection of Forgery • Douglas Blackburn

... many crude, illiterate, and unphilosophical speculations on the subject of mesmerism which the present unwholesome activity of the printing-press has ushered into the world, there is one book which stands out in prominent ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine - Volume 57, No. 352, February 1845 • Various

... family, and a few other persons, and the conversation in general was agreeable enough. I was obliged to tell them many wonderful stories (for who are so illiterate or insensible as not to be delighted with the marvellous!) concerning Germany and the King of Prussia. They could not sufficiently admire my courage in determining to travel on foot, although they could not help approving of the motive. At length, ...
— Travels in England in 1782 • Charles P. Moritz

... inhabited by three different nations, Turcomans, Greeks, and Armenians. The Turcomans, who are Mahometans, are a rude, illiterate, and savage people, inhabiting the mountains and inaccessible places, where they can procure pasture, as they subsist only on the produce of their flocks and herds. In their country there are excellent horses, called Turkish horses, and their mules are ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 1 • Robert Kerr

... those who depose to them. These things could not have occurred as they are narrated, and Dr Bataille is exploiting the ignorance of that class of readers to whom his mode of publication appealed. As products of imagination his marvels are crude and illiterate; in other words, they belong to precisely that type which is characteristic of romances published in penny numbers, and when he pledges his rectitude regarding them he does not enlist our confidence but indicates the slight value which he sets ...
— Devil-Worship in France - or The Question of Lucifer • Arthur Edward Waite

... were allowed in Prussia, except an ordained clergyman was present. At the close we sang another hymn, and then the master of the house prayed. Whilst he prayed, my feeling was something like this: "I could not pray as well, though I am much more learned than this illiterate man." The whole made a deep impression on me. I was happy; though, if I had been asked why I was happy, I could ...
— The Life of Trust: Being a Narrative of the Lord's Dealings With George Mueller • George Mueller

... and a half ago. Often the lot of the children of the poor, who then constituted the great bulk of all children, was little less than slavery. Wretchedly poor, dirty, unkempt, hard-worked, beaten about, knowing strong drink early, illiterate, often vicious—their lot was a sad one. For the children of the poor there were few, if any, educational opportunities. Writing on the subject ...
— THE HISTORY OF EDUCATION • ELLWOOD P. CUBBERLEY

... The mind as well as the eye adds something of its own before an image, even of the clearest object, can be painted upon it; and in historical inquiries the most instructed thinkers have but a limited advantage over the most illiterate. Those who know the most ...
— Pearls of Thought • Maturin M. Ballou

... people which was alive, a people which had neither sunk to sleep in the lap of material prosperity, nor abased itself in the sty of ignorance and political servitude. The spirit of liberty pervaded these rude but not illiterate assemblies, and her fair proportions were distinctly visible, even through the somewhat grotesque garb ...
— The Rise of the Dutch Republic, 1555-1566 • John Lothrop Motley

... of these associations which any one can insist upon, is that given by Mr. Addison, who says, "Our modern celebrated Clubs are founded upon eating and drinking, which are points wherein most men agree, and in which the learned and the illiterate, the dull and the airy, the philosopher and the buffoon, can all of them bear a part." They must be greatly scandalized if billiards and cards do not enter as largely into the recreations they supply, as eating and drinking. There must be some ...
— The Wedding Guest • T.S. Arthur

... were at first hand, and made by himself from nature. "Thomson's Seasons," read to him about this time by his brother Giles, gave him a glimpse of the union of poetry with natural beauty; and lit up in his mind an ambition which finally transformed the illiterate, rugged, half-tutored youth into the man who wrote "The Village Patriarch," and the "Corn ...
— Harper's New Monthly Magazine, Volume 1, No. 3, August, 1850. • Various

... what kind of amusement she expected to find among the illiterate swarm of ordinary people who in Washington represented constituencies so dreary that in comparison New York was a New Jerusalem, and Broad Street a grove of Academe. She replied that if Washington society were so bad as this, she should have gained all she wanted, for it would ...
— Democracy An American Novel • Henry Adams

... find, in investigating this subject, that every solid argument is against the extraordinary court, and that every one in its favor is specious only. It is a transfer from a judicature of learning and integrity, to one, the greatness of which is both illiterate and unprincipled. Yet such is the force of prejudice with some, and of the want of reflection in others, that many of our constitutions have copied this absurdity, without suspecting it to be one. I am glad to hear that our new Constitution is pretty sure of being accepted by States ...
— The Writings of Thomas Jefferson - Library Edition - Vol. 6 (of 20) • Thomas Jefferson

... with foes; but none of these gratify my ambition, or decide what is to be my destiny. I see the learned world have an influence with the voice of the people themselves. The despoilers of the remotest kingdoms of the earth refer their differences to this class of persons. This the illiterate and inexperienced little dream of; and now if you will receive me as I am, with these deficiencies—with all my misguided opinions, I will give you my honor, sir, that I will never disgrace the Institution, or those who have placed you in this honorable station." The instructor, who ...
— Innocents abroad • Mark Twain

... end of 1803 the last remnant was forced off the island. On January 1, 1804, the negro generals proclaimed the island an independent republic under the name of Haiti, one of the island's Indian names. Jean Jacques Dessalines, a rough, illiterate negro, but of indefatigable energy, was made governor for life, with dictatorial powers. One of his first acts was to order the extermination of such whites as still remained. Dessalines a year later assumed the title ...
— Santo Domingo - A Country With A Future • Otto Schoenrich

... left the shepherds to join the party. "I am provoked," said Lady Mabel, "to find how little progress I have made in speaking Portuguese. But it is not surprising what a complete mastery the rudest and most illiterate people here ...
— The Actress in High Life - An Episode in Winter Quarters • Sue Petigru Bowen

... simply gay, a mere insipid character, and introduced by the poet, no doubt, as a contrast to the turbulent and busy character of the other lady. The boisterous captain is a well-drawn and a well-supported character. He is rugged, honest, blunt, illiterate, and gallant. But it is the character of the hero Taylor which is drawn and sustained with the most art and nature. In the first place he is brave, although some have contradicted this, by saying that he did not go to sea voluntarily but was pressed, and then ran away the night before ...
— The Mirror of Taste, and Dramatic Censor, Vol. I, No. 6, June 1810 • Various

... prose?). "What we now call 'culture' certainly did not enter into the 'curriculum,' nor 'English,' nor modern languages, nor 'literature.'" {17a} Mr. Halliwell-Phillipps says that "removed prematurely from school, residing with illiterate relatives in a bookless neighbourhood, thrown into the midst of occupations adverse to scholastic progress—it is difficult to believe that when he first left Stratford he was not all but destitute of polished accomplishments." ...
— Shakespeare, Bacon and the Great Unknown • Andrew Lang

... Christians and heathens, that assigns to them the gifts of prophecy and divination. The habit that the mantis has of first stretching out one fore leg, and then the other, and of preserving such a position for some little time, has also led to the belief among the illiterate that it is in the act, in such cases, of pointing out the road ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 385, May 19, 1883 • Various

... Thackeray's unrivalled powers of imitation may be seen in the letters which are freely scattered about his works. No one before or since ever wrote such wonderfully happy illustrations of the epistolary style of boy or girl, old maid or illiterate man. There never were such letters as those of George Osborne in Vanity Fair—that letter from school describing the fight between Cuff and Figs is a masterpiece—the letters of Becky, of Rawdon, of Amelia—all are perfect reproductions of the writer, as are scores of letters scattered up ...
— Studies in Early Victorian Literature • Frederic Harrison

... movement is that of the Chet Ramis, or sect of Chet Ram, whose strange history may be found in East and West for July 1905. Chet Ram was an illiterate Hindu, a water-carrier and then a steward in the Indian army that took part in the war with China in 1859-1860. Returning to his native district not far from Lahore, Chet Ram, the Hindu, came under the spell of a Mahomedan ascetic Mahbub Sh[a]h, left all and followed him as his "familiar" disciple. ...
— New Ideas in India During the Nineteenth Century - A Study of Social, Political, and Religious Developments • John Morrison

... just point out the chief claims of the above pleasing piece of composition. In the first place, it is perfectly stilted and unnatural; the dialogue and the sentiments being artfully arranged, so as to be as strong and majestic as possible. Our dear Cat is but a poor illiterate country wench, who has come from cutting her husband's throat; and yet, see! she talks and looks like a tragedy princess, who is suffering in the most virtuous blank verse. This is the proper end of fiction, and one of the greatest triumphs that a novelist can achieve: for ...
— Catherine: A Story • William Makepeace Thackeray

... permanence of any wise scheme of education. Certain it is that a great difference of character existed between those Greeks who mingled much in maritime affairs and those who did not. The Arcadian may stand as a type of the pure Grecian landsman, with his rustic and illiterate habits—his diet of sweet chestnuts, barley cakes, and pork (as contrasted with the fish which formed the chief seasoning for the bread of an Athenian)—his superior courage and endurance—his reverence for Lacedaemonian headship as an old and customary influence—his ...
— Introduction to the Science of Sociology • Robert E. Park

... occupy the entire community, and which turns, not upon immortality, or spiritualism, or the nature of God, or the fate of man, but on the guilt or innocence of the actors in one pitiful drama,—a priest, a noble, an illiterate girl. ...
— Robert Browning • C. H. Herford

... had taken a conspicuous part in the politics of the City; a man not destitute of the powers of utterance, and a man of sound principles also. But a man so enveloped, so completely swallowed up by self-conceit, who, though perfectly illiterate, though unable to give to three consecutive sentences a grammatical construction, seemed to look upon himself as the first orator, the first writer, and the first statesman of the whole world. He had long been the cock of the Democratic party in the City; he was a great speech-maker; could make ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... from the reality of things, and perhaps I may as well say that they have been written during short intervals snatched from a busy and absorbing commercial life. I have tried to portray the men as they were—brave, dauntless, rugged, uncouth, illiterate, simple-minded, kind-hearted, and, at times, unmercifully savage. And yet there shone through all these conflictingly peculiar eccentricities a humorous kind of religion which belonged exclusively to themselves, but which gave their characteristics a touch of sublimity. We have travelled ...
— The Shellback's Progress - In the Nineteenth Century • Walter Runciman

... confident. As her strength began to return she took a growing interest in all that went on around her, asking eager, intelligent questions and noting with wistful curiosity the speech and manners of the nurses who served her. She was a raw recruit from Nature, unsophisticated, illiterate. Under a bondage of poverty and drudgery she had led her starved life in the mountain fastnesses; but now she had opened her eyes on ...
— Miss Mink's Soldier and Other Stories • Alice Hegan Rice

... chapters more strange, more seemingly impossible, than this which tells the story of the maid-of-all-work—the red-armed, illiterate peasant-girl who, without any dower of beauty or charm, won the idolatry of an Emperor and succeeded him on the greatest throne of Europe. So obscure was Catherine's origin that no records reveal either her true name or the year or place of her birth. All that we ...
— Love affairs of the Courts of Europe • Thornton Hall

... terms to enrich and strengthen the language in order that it may deal easily with the new thoughts. French is now a superb instrument, while English is positively poorer than it was in the time of Shakespeare, thanks to the prudery of our illiterate ...
— On the Art of Writing - Lectures delivered in the University of Cambridge 1913-1914 • Arthur Quiller-Couch

... of the children would ever enter a school-room or see a book. As it is, only one sixth part of the children are, or ever were, under instruction. And the instruction they receive is too often from persons themselves illiterate and full of superstition, but who are the best teachers who can be obtained with limited means. Consider, then, the real condition of affairs,—three hundred and fifty thousand blacks, a large share of them ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 102, April, 1866 • Various

... somewhat subsided, Roy produced the letter he had found in the cabin of the paralyzed Indian. Colonel Howell, having heard the explanation of the finding of the letter, without any hesitation and evidently without any qualms of conscience, drew out the enclosure. The letter was an illiterate scrawl. ...
— On the Edge of the Arctic - An Aeroplane in Snowland • Harry Lincoln Sayler

... and alarm. From the foundation of New England, it had been the custom of the inhabitants, in all matters of doubt and difficulty, to look to their ministers for counsel. So they did now; but, unfortunately, the ministers and wise men were more deluded than the illiterate people. Cotton Mather, a very learned and eminent clergyman, believed that the whole country was full of witches and wizards, who had given up their hopes of heaven, and signed a ...
— Grandfather's Chair • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... was to reverse the attainder which had been passed against his father; and immediately afterwards the young lord emerged from the hiding place, where he had been brought up in ignorance of his rank, and with the manners and education of a mere shepherd. Finding himself more illiterate than was usual even in an illiterate age, he retired to a tower, which he built in the beautiful forest of Barden, and there, under the direction of the monks of Bolton Abbey, gave himself up to the forbidden studies of alchemy and astrology. His son, who ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 13, No. 354, Saturday, January 31, 1829. • Various

... violated, determines that the author ought to be hissed, instead of being applauded. This it is to be so excellent a judge; this it is which gives a critic that exalted gratification which can never be attained by the illiterate,—the supreme power of pointing out faults, where others discern nothing but beauties, and preserving a rigid inflexibility of muscle, while the sides of the vulgar herd are shaking with laughter. These merry mortals, thinking with ...
— The Works of William Hogarth: In a Series of Engravings - With Descriptions, and a Comment on Their Moral Tendency • John Trusler

... case. At his trial, the prosecuting attorney "admitted that a hearing was withheld until interrogation had produced a confession." In the third and last case of this group, Harris v. South Carolina,[912] the defendant, an illiterate Negro, was apprehended in Tennessee on a Friday on a warrant alleging no more than a theft of a pistol, and taken to South Carolina on a Sunday. Without being informed of the contents of the warrant or of the charge of murder on which he was being held, without arraignment or advice ...
— The Constitution of the United States of America: Analysis and Interpretation • Edward Corwin

... will never be answered by electing an illiterate savage, scarce qualified, in point of understanding, to act as a country justice of peace, a man who has scarce ever travelled beyond the excursion of a fox-chase, whose conversation never rambles farther than his stable, his kennel, and the barnyard; who rejects decorum as degeneracy, ...
— The Adventures of Sir Launcelot Greaves • Tobias Smollett

... point on which the mass of men seem united is their sex. Prejudices of race, of caste, of colour may be overcome; but the pride of sex remains. Rights of citizenship are accorded to the small shopkeeper, artisan, lodger, agricultural labourer, and to the illiterate who knows no difference between one party and the other, either as to tendencies or methods of government. The Anglo-Saxon confers rights of citizenship upon the foreigner, upon the negro (as in the United States), upon the Maori (as in New Zealand)—the last of whom, ...
— The First Essay on the Political Rights of Women • Jean-Antoine-Nicolas de Caritat Condorcet

... end." Tecumseh began in a low voice and spoke for about an hour. "As he warmed with his subject his clear tones might be heard, as if 'trumpet-tongued' to the utmost limits of the assembled crowd who gathered around him." The interpreter Barron, was an illiterate man and the beauty and eloquence of the chief's oration was in great part lost. He denounced with passion and bitterness the cruel murder of the Moravian Indians during the Revolutionary War, the assassination of friendly chieftains and other outrages, and said that ...
— The Land of the Miamis • Elmore Barce

... feeble boast that they are not literally illiterate. They are always saying the ancient barons could not sign their own names—for they know less of history perhaps than of anything else. The modern barons, however, can sign their own names—or someone else's for a change. They can sign their own names; ...
— Utopia of Usurers and other Essays • G. K. Chesterton

... the most illiterate reader distinguish the spontaneous sensations of the heart, from the laboured productions of the brain. Truth, whenever it can fully appear, is a thing so naturally familiar to the mind, that an acquaintance commences at first sight. No artificial light, yet discovered, can display all ...
— The Writings Of Thomas Paine, Complete - With Index to Volumes I - IV • Thomas Paine

... elephant pipe, which we obtained (Fig. 17) a little more than a year ago, was found some six years before by an illiterate German farmer named Peter Mare, while planting corn on a farm in the mound region, Louisa County, Iowa. He did not care whether it was elephant or kangaroo; to him it was a curious 'Indian stone,' and nothing more, and he kept it and smoked it. In 1878 he removed to Kansas, and when he left ...
— Animal Carvings from Mounds of the Mississippi Valley • Henry W. Henshaw

... that he took on the beach proved to him that this was no place for illiterate snobs and shoddyites. Everybody talked of high moral aims, or questions of deep import, (especially the high tariff Congressmen,) and even the little girls who were sitting in the shade, (with big white umbrellas over them to keep the freckles off,) were puzzling ...
— Punchinello, Vol. 1, No. 19, August 6, 1870 • Various

... for many years, until I found a probable solution. I frequently saw, in the blank leaves of old books, learned books, Bibles of a time when a Bible was very costly, etc., the name of an owner who, by the handwriting and spelling, must have been an illiterate person or a child, followed by the date of the book itself. Accordingly, this uneducated person or young child seemed to be the first owner, which in many cases was not credible. Looking one day at a Barker's[418] Bible of 1599, I saw an ...
— A Budget of Paradoxes, Volume II (of II) • Augustus de Morgan

... conceive of the deity as consisting of light, and therefore it seems probable that, like the other Vaishnava sects, they really take him to be the Sun. Kabir prohibited the worship of all idols and visible symbols, but as might be expected the illiterate Kabirpanthis cannot adhere strictly to this. Some of them worship the Bijak, the principal sacred book of their sect. At Rudri near Dhamtari on the Mahanadi one of the Gurus is buried, and a religious fair is held there. Recently a platform has been made with a footprint ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India—Volume I (of IV) • R.V. Russell

... and speaks of the pride that he and his associates feel in conferring upon him the highest honor in their gift,—the Wooden Spoon. He exhorts him to pursue through life the noble cruise he has commenced in College,—not seeking glory as one of the illiterate,—the [Greek: oi polloi],—nor exactly on the fence, but so near to it that he may safely be said to ...
— A Collection of College Words and Customs • Benjamin Homer Hall

... period of very slow progress. The people who were in power believed that "progress" was a very undesirable invention of the Evil One and ought to be discouraged, and as they hap-pened to occupy the seats of the mighty, it was easy to enforce their will upon the patient serfs and the illiterate knights. Here and there a few brave souls sometimes ventured forth into the forbidden region of science, but they fared badly and were considered lucky when they escaped with their lives and a ...
— The Story of Mankind • Hendrik van Loon

... have associated to any extent with the people in the rural districts, especially those of American or Dutch-American descent, they, no doubt, have observed that a great many of the older and more illiterate ones among them are very superstitious, being implicit believers in signs, charms, apparitions, etc.; and most of them, also, entertain the opinion that the moon exerts an occult influence over many ...
— From Wealth to Poverty • Austin Potter

... peasantry; but though compelled to acknowledge the ignorance of the Spaniards in general, I have great pleasure in being able to state that during the latter years it has been becoming less and less, and that the rising generation is by no means so illiterate as the last, which was itself superior in acquirements to the preceding one. It is to be hoped that the progress in improvement will still continue, and that within a few years the blessings of education will be as generally diffused amongst the Spaniards as amongst the people ...
— Letters of George Borrow - to the British and Foreign Bible Society • George Borrow

... with it, I have never regretted the experience. It is easy now to see the absurdity of my idea, but at that time I knew less than I do now of the labouring people's condition, and in furthering the movement I entertained a shadowy hope of finding amongst the illiterate villagers some fragment or other of primitive art. It is almost superfluous to say that nothing of the sort was found. My neighbours had no arts of their own. For any refreshment of that kind they were ...
— Change in the Village • (AKA George Bourne) George Sturt

... gruesome torture. The third act began. Hamlet collogued with the Queen. The poet pricked up his ears. Whose language was this? Certainly not Shakespeare's or his superior's. Angels and ministers of grace defend him! this was only the illiterate jargon of the hack playwright, with its peppering of the phrases of Hester Street. 'You have too many dead flies on you,' Hamlet's mother told him. 'You'll get left.' But the nightmare thickened. Hamlet and his ...
— Ghetto Comedies • Israel Zangwill

... occasion I had been warned by an artist friend who had kindly promised to sing songs between the stories, that my audience would be of varying age and almost entirely illiterate. Many of the older men and women, who could neither read nor write, had never been beyond their native village. I was warned to be very simple in my language and to explain any difficult words which might occur in the particular Indian story I had chosen ...
— The Art of the Story-Teller • Marie L. Shedlock

... can understand America with his brains. It is too big, too puzzling. It tempts, and it deceives. But many an illiterate immigrant has felt the true America in his pulses before he ever crossed the Atlantic. The descendant of the Pilgrims still remains ignorant of our national life if he does not respond to its glorious ...
— The American Mind - The E. T. Earl Lectures • Bliss Perry

... and over can read and write total population: 82% male: 87% female: 77% note: over two-thirds of the world's 785 million illiterate adults are found in only eight countries (India, China, Bangladesh, Pakistan, Nigeria, Ethiopia, Indonesia, and Egypt); of all the illiterate adults in the world, two-thirds are women; extremely low literacy rates are concentrated in three regions, South and West Asia, Sub-Saharan ...
— The 2005 CIA World Factbook • United States. Central Intelligence Agency

... commentators and have caused so various constructions to be put upon it? It is clear, the professor maintains, that the reference is to pagan rhetors from Gaul whose arrogant presumption, founded on their learning, made them regard with disdain the comparatively illiterate apostle of the Scots. Everyone is familiar with the classic passage of Tacitus wherein he alludes to the harbours of Ireland as being more familiar to continental mariners than those of Britain. We have ...
— Lives of SS. Declan and Mochuda • Anonymous

... Suffrage Movement," was the Anti-Slavery struggle in this country. The ranks of the Abolitionists were composed of the most eloquent orators, the ablest logicians, men and women of the purest moral character and best minds in the nation. They were usually spoken of in the early days as "an illiterate, ill-mannered, poverty-stricken, crazy set of long-haired Abolitionists." While the fact is, some of the most splendid specimens of manhood and womanhood, in physical appearance, in culture, refinement, and knowledge of polite life, were found among the early Abolitionists. James G. Birney, ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... men of letters have developed wonderful feats of memory; and among illiterate persons, by means of points of association, the power of memory has been little short of marvelous. At a large hotel in Saratoga there was at one time a negro whose duty was to take charge of the hats and coats ...
— Anomalies and Curiosities of Medicine • George M. Gould

... in our present industrial age, why should not the nobility turn their attention and bring their abilities into enterprises of this nature? Why shouldn't they be able to understand what is understood by a simple illiterate merchant? They are not suffering from lack of education and one might even claim, without any exaggeration, that they are, in a certain sense, the ...
— Virgin Soil • Ivan S. Turgenev

... feelings of others with absolute certainty of himself and his own opinions. He is a remarkable example of the educating influence of tactful perception, combined with entire singleness of aim, considered quite apart from its moral character. His early life was passed among the uncouth and illiterate; his daily associations, since he embraced Mormonism, have been with the least cultivated grades of human society,—a heterogeneous peasant-horde, looking to him for erection into a nation: yet he has so clearly seen what is requisite ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 13, No. 78, April, 1864 • Various

... a systematic reader, it showed itself to have been systematically collected; it stretched pretty equably through two centuries,—namely, from about 1600 to 1800,—and might, perhaps, amount to seventeen thousand volumes. Lord Massey was far from illiterate; and his interest in books was unaffected, if limited, and too often interrupted, by defective knowledge. The library was dispersed through six or seven small rooms, lying between the drawing-room in one wing, and the dining-room in ...
— Memorials and Other Papers • Thomas de Quincey

... might often fail to be suggested by the mere articulation of the syllables. If there be any one, whose recollection does not furnish him with evidence of this fact, he may put it to the test of experiment, by desiring any of his illiterate acquaintances to read off some of Mr. Southey's dactylics, or Sir Philip Sidney's hexameters. It is the same thing with the more unusual measures of the ancient authors. We have never known any one who fell in, at the first trial, with the proper rhyme and cadence ...
— Famous Reviews • Editor: R. Brimley Johnson

... blocking the legislation of the empire? What had got under their skins, into their blood? Surely not for a gray half-deserted city? Surely not for little bays and purple mountains? Surely not for an illiterate peasantry, half crazed ...
— The Wind Bloweth • Brian Oswald Donn-Byrne

... get into the heads of negroes, nor yet into the heads of illiterate Irishmen. You'll find, too, that five Americans out of every ten take no interest in ordinary politics, and the five who do are of the lowest class—a Boss is their natural master. Our party politics, my friend, resembles ...
— Elder Conklin and Other Stories • Frank Harris

... of it be when vested in an illiterate Chinese or rude Tartar who has no other talent or recommendation for his authority than the power alone which his office ...
— Travels in China, Containing Descriptions, Observations, and Comparisons, Made and Collected in the Course of a Short Residence at the Imperial Palace of Yuen-Min-Yuen, and on a Subsequent Journey thr • John Barrow

... illiterate travelling lithotomist—a class of itinerant physicians who were very generally frowned down by the regular practitioners of medicine. But Franco possessed such skill as an operator, and appears to have been so earnest in the ...
— A History of Science, Volume 2(of 5) • Henry Smith Williams

... anonymously, the secret of the authorship being so closely guarded that the publisher did not know who was the author. Dr. Johnson characterized it as "A production so new and strange that it filled the reader with admiration and amazement. It was read by the high and low, the learned and the illiterate." In this work, Jonathan Swift appears as one of the greatest masters of English we have ever had; as endowed with an imaginative genius inferior to few; as a keen and pitiless critic of the world, and a bitter misanthropic accounter of ...
— Gulliver's Travels - Into Several Remote Regions of the World • Jonathan Swift

... profits of the business, and defends him against the charge of inconsistency. Morris may not have thought out the question in all its aspects, but much of the criticism passed upon him was even more illogical and depended on far too narrow and illiterate a use of the word Socialism. He knew as well as his critics that no new millennium could be introduced by merely taking the wealth of the rich and dividing it into equal portions ...
— Victorian Worthies - Sixteen Biographies • George Henry Blore

... was born at Genoa on the night of February 18, 1784, of parents in humbly prosperous circumstances, his father being a ship-broker, and, though illiterate in a general way, a passionate lover of music and an amateur of some skill. The father soon perceived the child's talent, and caused him to study so severely that it not only affected his constitution, but actually made him a tolerable ...
— Great Violinists And Pianists • George T. Ferris

... translated into French, and which were fragments of a most ancient ecclesiastical process. He has believed that nothing would be more amusing than the actual resurrection of this antique affair, wherein shines forth the illiterate simplicity of the good old times. Now, then, give ear. This is the order in which were the manuscripts, of which the author has made use in his own fashion, because the ...
— Droll Stories, Volume 2 • Honore de Balzac

... in appearance and illiterate in speech, but his manner impressed Harry in an extraordinary manner. It was direct and wonderfully convincing. The boy recognized at once a mind that would steer straight ...
— The Guns of Bull Run - A Story of the Civil War's Eve • Joseph A. Altsheler

... While many are illiterate, the Belgians are giving much attention to schools these times. Even while they were guests of France, with their government located at Havre, they established twenty-four schools for the children and a single woman had ...
— Birdseye Views of Far Lands • James T. Nichols

... vulgar language, had struck, or taken him in for a guinea with so much ease and dexterity. Booth answered, he did not know his name; all that he knew of him was, that he was the most impudent and illiterate fellow he had ever seen, and that, by his own account, he was the author of most of the wonderful productions of the age. "Perhaps," said he, "it may look uncharitable in me to blame you for your generosity; but I am convinced the fellow hath not the least merit or capacity, and you ...
— Amelia (Complete) • Henry Fielding

... for Haytians are not a persistently energetic race. In regard to the use of small instead of capital letters in the words 'La Tortue' on the paper, I observed, in the beginning, that the first letter of the whole sentence—the 'p' in 'puni'—was a small one. Clearly, the writer was an illiterate man, and it was at once plain that he may have made the ...
— Martin Hewitt, Investigator • Arthur Morrison

... State the proportion was about the same. This was a great disappointment to the dominating element in the Democratic party, who had hoped and expected, through their policy of "Masterly Inactivity" and intimidation of white men, that the convention would be composed almost exclusively of illiterate and inexperienced colored men. Although a minor at that time, I took an active part in the local politics of my county, and, being a member of a Republican club that had been organized at Natchez, I was frequently called upon to address the ...
— The Facts of Reconstruction • John R. Lynch

... family himself, added to his bit of land in course of years, and acquired other property. His children were now all settled in life, and he had given them everything he had except the cottage in which he lived. I was struck by the strong virtue of this illiterate peasant, who had evidently no notion of his own value, and who would not have told the simple story of his life passed amidst the moors of the Correze had I not ...
— Two Summers in Guyenne • Edward Harrison Barker

... poetry of the heart, and their yearning fervour and indubiety made Zulma understand, as she listened to them through her tears, how it is that wayside statues of stone, and wooden figures of the Madonna in lofty niches, are said to hear and answer by visible tokens the prayers of the illiterate, the unfortunate, ...
— The Bastonnais - Tale of the American Invasion of Canada in 1775-76 • John Lesperance

... Being illiterate people, father and son, unskilled labour was all that presented itself, so they became rickshaw coolies, as so many country people do. During a year, some two hundred thousand men, young and old and mostly from up-country, ...
— Civilization - Tales of the Orient • Ellen Newbold La Motte

... plain as sunshine, for that must correct itself. You know I am homo unius linguae: in English, illiterate, ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Vol. 5 • Edited by E. V. Lucas

... Kaiser was elected sole bugaboo, he shared the honors of that office with von Hindenburg, the Crown Prince, Capt. Boy-Ed, von Bernstorff and von Tirpitz. Most of this denunciation, of course, was frankly idiotic—the naive pishposh of suburban Methodists, notoriety-seeking college professors, almost illiterate editorial writers, and other such numskulls. In much of it, including not a few official hymns of hate, Nietzsche was gravely discovered to be the teacher of such spokesmen of the extremest sort of German nationalism as von Bernhardi and von Treitschke—which ...
— The Antichrist • F. W. Nietzsche

... fourteen it seemed that Gibbon, as he says, was destined to remain through life an illiterate cripple. But as he approached his sixteenth year, a great change took place in his constitution, and his diseases, instead of growing with his growth and strengthening with his strength, wonderfully vanished. This ...
— Gibbon • James Cotter Morison

... great deal about the necessity of saving Anglo-American friendship, a necessity which I myself feel rather too strongly to be satisfied with the ambassadorial and editorial style of achieving it. I have already said that the worst style of all is to be Anglo-American; or, as the more illiterate would express, to be Anglo-Saxon. I am more and more convinced that the way for the Englishman to do it is to be English; but to know that he is English and not everything else as well. Thus the only sincere answer to Irish nationalism ...
— What I Saw in America • G. K. Chesterton

... Alcoran. The style of this volume is generally turgid, heavy, monotonous. It is disfigured with childish tales and impossible adventures. But it is frequently figurative, frequently poetical, sometimes sublime. And amidst all its defects, it will remain the greatest of all monuments of uncultivated and illiterate genius. ...
— Four Early Pamphlets • William Godwin

... professions, by all those who, conscious of their own ignorance, seek to level the reputation of their superiors with their own. Secondly, in all disputes upon physic that happen betwixt a person who really understands the art, and an illiterate pretender, the arguments of the first will seem obscure and unintelligible to those who are unacquainted with the previous systems on which they are built; while the other's theory, derived from common notions, and superficial observation, will be more agreeable, because better ...
— The Adventures of Ferdinand Count Fathom, Complete • Tobias Smollett

... costumes, in which black and red colours predominated. Content with the product of their labour and having few wants, they lived in perfect equality and with extreme frugality. In an age when learning was confined to the few, they were not more illiterate than the corresponding class in other countries. 'In the summer the men were continually employed in husbandry.' They cultivated chiefly the rich marsh-lands by the rivers and the sea, building dikes along the banks and shores to shut out the tides; and made little effort to clear the woodlands. ...
— The Acadian Exiles - A Chronicle of the Land of Evangeline • Arthur G. Doughty

... which was shown me at the time by Mr. McCreary, Commissioner of Immigration at that point. The cable read, "Arrived Canada safe are free." The change was a little too much for them, and they did not realize that they were not free to become nuisances to others. They were ignorant, illiterate, but had the merit of being conscientious and being willing to suffer for conscience' sake. This latter characteristic always prevented me from condemning them wholly. Once their ignorance was removed they would become industrious ...
— Policing the Plains - Being the Real-Life Record of the Famous North-West Mounted Police • R.G. MacBeth

... artistic. Indeed by the side of "Parzifal" everything seems artistic; Hartmann von Aue reads like Chaucer, "Aucassin et Nicolette" is as living as "Cymbeline," "Chevy Chase" seems as good as the battles of Homer. It is not a narrative, but a vague mooning; a knight illiterate, not merely like his fellow minnesingers, in the way of reading and writing, but in the sense of complete absence of all habit of literary form; extremely noble and pure of mind, chaste, gentle, with a funny, puzzled sense of humour, reminding one ...
— Euphorion - Being Studies of the Antique and the Mediaeval in the - Renaissance - Vol. II • Vernon Lee

... WILL BE BEST PROVED BY MOST OF THE OLD PEOPLE HEREABOUTS HAVING A GREAT PART OF IT BY HEART; many, indeed, are not aware of the manners of this place, it is but lately emerged from barbarity, and till this present age the poor illiterate people in these glens knew of no other entertainment in the long winter nights than in repeating and listening to these feats of their ancestors, which I believe to be handed down inviolate from father to son, for many generations, although no doubt, had a copy ...
— Sir Walter Scott and the Border Minstrelsy • Andrew Lang

... moments of unreasonable happiness are the most enviable no doubt, for there is neither gall nor satiety in the reaction. All this is as enchanting as—well, as a woman's promise. What lies beyond? Illiterate and mercenary Spaniards, vicious natives, and boundless ennui, one may safely wager. But if all California is as beautiful as this, no man that has spent a winter in Sitka should ask ...
— Rezanov • Gertrude Atherton

... whipping salt gales which sped past the walls. Opposite the house, far out at sea, the familiar lightship winked from the sandbank, and all at once there came to him a wild wish—that, instead of having an artist's reputation, he could be living here an illiterate and unknown man, wooing, and in a fair way of winning, the pretty laundress in the cottage ...
— The Well-Beloved • Thomas Hardy

... burdens along some country road, who are not jabbering away, one and all, as if in the very heat of some exciting discussion, and afraid that their journey will come to an end before their most telling arguments are exhausted. One wonders what ignorant, illiterate fellows like these can possibly have to talk about to each other in a country where beer-shop politics are unknown, where religious disputations leave no sting behind, and want of communication limits the area of news to half-a-dozen neighbouring streets in ...
— Chinese Sketches • Herbert A. Giles

... dead from starvation. When they reached Nashville, or Knoxville after it came into our possession, they were in need of all things; shelter, food, clothing, medicine and care. A few of them were well educated; the majority were illiterate so far as book knowledge was concerned, but intelligent and thoughtful on the subject of loyalty and the war; not a few were almost reduced to a state of fatuity by their sufferings, and seemed to have lost all distinct ...
— Woman's Work in the Civil War - A Record of Heroism, Patriotism, and Patience • Linus Pierpont Brockett

... People in Ulster, and those in the other Provinces. In the first, all are laborious, all are well Cloath'd, well Fed, well Housed and Taught; in the last, all Lazy, Naked, Starv'd, Lodg'd in dirty Hutts, and almost Illiterate. The superior Advantages which the North so eminently enjoys, proceed not so much from the different Genius's, of the two opposite Religions, which prevail there, and in the South, (tho' that is something) but from Tillage and Labour, and all the Arts 'tis employ'd in, being fixt in Ulster. This ...
— A Dialogue Between Dean Swift and Tho. Prior, Esq. • Anonymous

... and then I went away, thinking Fleming Stone a queer sort of detective to have for assistant such an illiterate, uncultured boy as Fibsy. The name was enough to condemn him! But as I thought the little chap over, I realized that his talk had been clear-headed and to the point, ...
— Vicky Van • Carolyn Wells

... forty blacks were killed in the parish of Caddo during the following month. In fact, the number of murders, maimings and whippings during these months aggregated over one thousand.[4] The result was that the intelligent Negroes were either intimidated or killed so that the illiterate masses of Negro voters might be ordered to refrain from voting the Republican ticket to strengthen the Democrats or be subjected to starvation through the operation of the mischievous land tenure and credit ...
— A Century of Negro Migration • Carter G. Woodson

... analysis had been carefully made, we excused the young man and explained that thirteen of his twenty-six years had been spent in jail. He had been left an orphan early in life and secured so little education that he was almost entirely illiterate. ...
— Analyzing Character • Katherine M. H. Blackford and Arthur Newcomb

... some occasion to write, the Indian King, who saw me, believ'd that he could write as well as I. Whereupon, I wrote a Word, and gave it him to copy, which he did with more Exactness, than any European could have done, that was illiterate. It was so well, that he who could read mine, might have done the same by his. Afterwards, he took great Delight in making Fish-hooks of his own Invention, which would have been a good Piece for an Antiquary to have puzzled his Brains withal, in tracing out the Characters of all the ...
— A New Voyage to Carolina • John Lawson

... France, it is a second spring; it is after a winter. We are now before the French in literature[729]; but we had it long after them. In England, any man who wears a sword and a powdered wig is ashamed to be illiterate[730]. I believe it is not so in France. Yet there is, probably, a great deal of learning in France, because they have such a number of religious establishments; so many men who have nothing else to do but to study. I do not know this; but I take it upon the common principles of chance. ...
— Life Of Johnson, Vol. 3 • Boswell, Edited by Birkbeck Hill

... Blanco. There was always a mustard-pot collector in sight. The weather was getting hot. Salmon would not keep in a troller's hold. Part of the old guard stuck tight to MacRae. But there were new men fishing; there were Japanese and illiterate Greeks. It was not to be expected that these men should indulge in far-sighted calculations. But it was a trifle disappointing to see how readily any troller would unload his catch into a mustard pot if neither of MacRae's carriers happened to be ...
— Poor Man's Rock • Bertrand W. Sinclair

... dirty dwellers in tents and caravans, cock-shysters and dealers in dogs of doubtful character, there can be anything strange, and quaint, and deeply tinged with the spirit of which I have spoken. As well might one attempt to persuade the twenty-stone half-illiterate and wholly old-fashioned rural magistrate of the last century that the poor devil of a hen-stealing Gipsy dragged before him knew that which would send thrills of joy through the most learned philologist in Europe, and ...
— The English Gipsies and Their Language • Charles G. Leland

... poorly qualified for their business. Bradford had not been bred to it, and was very illiterate; and Keimer, though something of a scholar, was a mere compositor, knowing nothing of presswork. He had been one of the French prophets, and could act their enthusiastic agitations. At this time he did not profess any particular religion, but something of all on occasion; ...
— Children's Literature - A Textbook of Sources for Teachers and Teacher-Training Classes • Charles Madison Curry

... singularly crude and illiterate production, stuffed with blunders and contradictions, giving evidence on every page of a striking unfitness ...
— Primitive Love and Love-Stories • Henry Theophilus Finck

... policy was charged with far-reaching consequences. In that, they were superior to the people about them, and they introduced certain moderate reforms, literary rather than dogmatic, in the externals of ritual, and in the liturgical books. An illiterate clergy had allowed abuses to take root, and were excessively intolerant of change. A schism arose between the established church with its rectified texts and improved ceremonial, and the large minority who rejected them. Everybody knows Newman's story of the ancient priest ...
— Lectures on Modern history • Baron John Emerich Edward Dalberg Acton

... the very state to which Butler belonged, benefit of clergy could be claimed, up to relatively recent times, by those who could read. The educated criminal escaped hanging for offences for which his illiterate neighbor had to swing. ...
— A Handbook of Ethical Theory • George Stuart Fullerton

... remarkable fact that one of the few truly original and novel ideas the past century can boast, and the one which has had the deepest influence on geology, had its origin in the brain of an illiterate Swiss chamois hunter named Perraudin. Throughout the Alps, on lofty crags, great bowlders were often found, which had no relation to the geology of the region and which were called erratics, because they had evidently come there from a distance. But how? Scientists ...
— American Men of Mind • Burton E. Stevenson

... at Asti on the 9th of September. Here he was received with great honour by Lodovico and his father-in-law, Duke Ercole, who rode out to meet him on his entry into the town. The magistrates and citizens welcomed him as their liege lord, and the illiterate French barons were amazed to hear a child of eleven, Margareta Solari, declaim a Latin oration with perfect ease and fluency. Two days afterwards Beatrice herself arrived at the castle of Annona, in the neighbourhood of Asti, bringing her choir of singers and musicians, and accompanied ...
— Beatrice d'Este, Duchess of Milan, 1475-1497 • Julia Mary Cartwright

... use of multiplying words on the subject when the evil prevails to such extent as to be common custom in the land? No longer confined to the rude, illiterate rabble, to country villages and public taverns, it has penetrated all cities and entered nearly every house, being particularly prevalent among the nobility—in the courts of princes. I recall that when ...
— Epistle Sermons, Vol. II - Epiphany, Easter and Pentecost • Martin Luther

... things, who, by continual dissipation, had annihilated the few ideas nature had given them, and yet were celebrated for wonderful pretty gentlemen; young ladies extolled for their wit, because they were handsome; illiterate empty women as well as men, in high life, admired for their knowledge, from their being resolutely positive; and women of real understanding so far from pleasing the polite million, that they frightened them away, and were ...
— The Works of Samuel Johnson in Nine Volumes - Volume IV: The Adventurer; The Idler • Samuel Johnson

... 18. An illiterate patchwork of lifeless and uninteresting scribbling appeared under my byline day after day in the Intelligencer. Not a word, not a thought of my own was left. I was not restrained from protest by the absurd threats of Le ffacase, but prudence dictated ...
— Greener Than You Think • Ward Moore

... died; and the intense family affection, which was one of his strongest characteristics, suffered of course cruelly, as is recorded in a series of touching letters to his sister and mother. He fell and hurt himself at Cannon Street, too, but was comforted by his sister with a leading case about an illiterate man who fell into a reservoir through not reading a notice. The Harrow house became a reality at Lady Day, and at Midsummer he went to stay at Panshanger, and "heard the word 'Philistine' used a hundred times ...
— Matthew Arnold • George Saintsbury

... intellectual ability to decide their own legal status, they are, taken the country over, rather better educated than men. There are more girls than boys in the high schools of the United States; more girls than boys in the higher grammar grades. Fewer women than men are numbered among illiterate. As for the great middle class of women, it is obvious that they are better read than their men. Their specific knowledge of affairs may be less, but their general intelligence ...
— What eight million women want • Rheta Childe Dorr

... appeals for the recognition to which she had so long been entitled in the sisterhood of states; of the prompt refusals with which her pleas were persistently met, though other territories with smaller and more illiterate populations, more restricted resources, and in every way weaker claims, were allowed to assume the habiliments of maturity, while Utah, lusty, large and strong, was kept in swaddling clothes. But the cries of the vigorous ...
— The Story of "Mormonism" • James E. Talmage

... owned, bear unqualified testimony to the kindness and humanity of officers; but in the great majority of cases the evidence they adduce is overwhelmingly to the contrary. And if their language is sometimes bombastic, if their style is almost uniformly illiterate, if they are the productions of a band of mutinous dogs standing out for rights which they never possessed and deserving of a halter rather than a hearing, these are circumstances that do not in the least detract ...
— The Press-Gang Afloat and Ashore • John R. Hutchinson

... judicial parliament toward the end of the thirteenth century. With the change of functions, the chief crown officers were admitted to seats in the court. Next, the introduction of a written procedure, and the establishment of a more complicated legislation, compelled the illiterate barons and the prelates to call in the assistance of graduates of the university, acquainted with the art of writing and skilled in law. These were appointed by the king to the office of counsellors.[32] In 1302, parliament, hitherto migratory, following the king in his journeys, was made stationary ...
— The Rise of the Hugenots, Vol. 1 (of 2) • Henry Martyn Baird

... the levels of intellectual development. One might question what common grounds for social intercourse there would be between an American farmer's wife with either grammar-school or high-school education and some European peasant's wife, illiterate, impossibly ...
— A Stake in the Land • Peter Alexander Speek

... own to plead, but while they enlighten and sustain the reader his common sense will not refuse them. Their authors are a natural and irresistible aristocracy in every society, and, more than kings or emperors, exert an influence on mankind. When the illiterate and perhaps scornful trader has earned by enterprise and industry his coveted leisure and independence, and is admitted to the circles of wealth and fashion, he turns inevitably at last to those still higher ...
— The Best of the World's Classics, Restricted to Prose, Vol. X (of X) - America - II, Index • Various

... is still admired, it is not, I believe, in any of those parts that bear the mark of a rude illiterate age. With regard to Julius Caesar [e], engaged as he was in projects of vast ambition, we may forgive him the want of that perfection which might, otherwise, be expected from so sublime a genius. Brutus, in like manner, may be excused on account of his philosophical speculations. Both ...
— A Dialogue Concerning Oratory, Or The Causes Of Corrupt Eloquence • Cornelius Tacitus

... My parishioners were the squire, a half-pay captain in the army, a retired custom-house surveyor who was supposed to be the illegitimate son of a member of parliament, and the surrounding farmers and labourers. All were grossly illiterate, but I soon observed that a common ignorance does not prevent, but rather tends to establish artificial distinctions. Inferiority by a single degree in the social scale becomes not only a barrier to ...
— More Pages from a Journal • Mark Rutherford

... don't know where the reform is to begin. I've seen a perfectly capable, honest man, time and again, run against an illiterate trickster, and get beaten. I suppose if the people wanted decent members of congress they would elect them. Perhaps," continued Philip with a smile, "the women ...
— The Gilded Age, Complete • Mark Twain and Charles Dudley Warner

... lying between St. Just and the sea—a sort of common, covered with heath and furze—on which the ancient Britons have left their indelible mark, in the shape of pits and hollows and trenches, with their relative mounds and hillocks. Here, in the days of old, our worthy but illiterate forefathers had grubbed and dug and turned up every square foot of the soil, like a colony of gigantic rabbits, in order to supply the precious metal of the country to the Phoenicians, Jews, ...
— Deep Down, a Tale of the Cornish Mines • R.M. Ballantyne

... thought I'd drive you myself.' Well, that was too much for even Bee. So she thanked him, and in we got. The first house we went to was that of a haughty society dame of whose opinion Bee stood much in awe. Personally, I thought her an illiterate old bore. She was newly rich, and laid great emphasis upon such things as maids' caps, while tucking her own napkin under her chin at dinner. She followed us to the door in an excess of cordiality which amused me, considering everything, and there, to our horror, we saw poor old Overman half-way ...
— At Home with the Jardines • Lilian Bell

... seventeenth, but is without address. Postmark San Francisco. It is also quite illiterate. The spelling is atrocious. Here ...
— The Night-Born • Jack London

... think that these corruptions of language do no harm. Those who are struggling with the difficulty (and who know by experience how great it already is) of expressing one's self clearly with precision, find their resources continually narrowed by illiterate writers, who seize and twist from its purpose some form of speech which once served to convey briefly and compactly an unambiguous meaning. It would hardly be believed how often a writer is compelled to a circumlocution by the single vulgarism, introduced ...
— A System Of Logic, Ratiocinative And Inductive • John Stuart Mill

... it is that an illiterate old soothsayer should be considered important enough to be included in an ...
— New York Times Current History; The European War, Vol 2, No. 2, May, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... children, are precious and final qualifications. It is a natural faculty that is required; it is not merely having a genteel young woman at a table in a ward. One of the finest nurses I met was a red-faced illiterate old Irish woman; I have seen her take the poor wasted naked boys so tenderly up in her arms. There are plenty of excellent clean old black women ...
— Complete Prose Works - Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy • Walt Whitman

... dignified style of eloquence, which, in the corruption of taste and language, still preserves the majesty of the Roman laws. In some respects, the office of the Imperial quaestor may be compared with that of a modern chancellor; but the use of a great seal, which seems to have been adopted by the illiterate barbarians, was never introduced to attest the public acts of the emperors. 4. The extraordinary title of count of the sacred largesses was bestowed on the treasurer-general of the revenue, with the intention perhaps of inculcating, ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 2 • Edward Gibbon

... the testator was enfeebled by disease. It could not have been the infirmity of age, for he was but fifty-two when he died. It is impossible to look at these signatures without receiving the impression that they were written by an illiterate man. It is not merely their illegibility, but they have the scrawly curves and uncertain terminations of the penman who is not certain about the spelling of his own name. The great collections of London ...
— Great Men and Famous Women, Vol. 7 of 8 • Charles F. (Charles Francis) Horne

... when we have apprehended clearly what education is to lead to, and literature to teach. I wish you to see that both well directed moral training and well chosen reading lead to the possession of a power over the ill-guided and illiterate, which is, according to the measure of it, in the truest sense kingly;* conferring indeed the purest kingship that can exist among men. Too many other kingships (however distinguished by visible insignia or material power) being either ...
— The Art Of Writing & Speaking The English Language - Word-Study and Composition & Rhetoric • Sherwin Cody

... English word, for which we have no equivalent. The assize records show that offences against public morality are almost wholly confined to the towns in Artois, and it is a notable fact that these particular offences are much more frequently committed by persons who can read and write than by the illiterate.' ...
— France and the Republic - A Record of Things Seen and Learned in the French Provinces - During the 'Centennial' Year 1889 • William Henry Hurlbert

... THE SCHOOL-ROOM.—The (American) Richmond Examiner, in connexion with the recent trial of Ward of Kentucky, has the following theory on the extinction of schoolmasters in general:—'The South has for years been overrun with hordes of illiterate, unprincipled graduates of the Yankee free schools (those hot-beds of self-conceit and ignorance), who have, by dint of unblushing impudence, established themselves as schoolmasters in our midst. So odious ...
— Lands of the Slave and the Free - Cuba, The United States, and Canada • Henry A. Murray

... the disputer of this world?' May it not be the power of God which, amidst this wreck of eloquence and learning, has preserved unmutilated, even to these later days, the simple and unstudied compositions of the illiterate Galileans—the impassioned but rugged addresses of the tent-maker of Cilicia?" Dr. Adam Clarke, no mean judge, pronounced by the late Rev. Robert Hall to have been "an ocean of learning," said, "I have diligently examined the ...
— Museum of Antiquity - A Description of Ancient Life • L. W. Yaggy

... French," said Napoleon, "love equality: they care little for liberty." Equality is plain, simple, easily understood. Liberty is complex, and exceedingly difficult of comprehension. The most illiterate peasant may, at a glance, grasp the idea of equality; the most profound statesman may not, without much care and thought, comprehend the nature of liberty. Hence it is that equality, and not liberty, so readily seizes the mind of the multitude, ...
— Cotton is King and The Pro-Slavery Arguments • Various

... that I, and other slaves, often doubted the sincerity of every white man's religion? Can it be a matter of astonishment, that slaves often feel that there is no just God for the poor African? Nay, verily; and were it not for the comforting and sustaining influence that these poor, illiterate and suffering creatures feel as coming from an unearthly source, they would in their ignorance all become infidels. To me, that beautiful Sabbath morning was clouded in midnight darkness, and I retired to ponder on ...
— Twenty-Two Years a Slave, and Forty Years a Freeman • Austin Steward

... before the preaching of Christianity in Northumbria. Whitaker says that this mistake originated in the illiterate copying out, by some modern stone-cutter, of an inscription in the character of Henry the Eighth's time ...
— The Life of Charlotte Bronte - Volume 1 • Elizabeth Gaskell

... he had been, but they needed no garment but their own righteousness-the forms of their church. The mark, or certificate of the new birth, was an object of scorn to them. Probably they pitied him as a harmless mystic, weak in mind and illiterate. Alas! how soon was their laughter turned into mourning. Fear and calamity overwhelmed them. They trusted in themselves, and ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... to-day is, that men and women shall be urged into positions of conviction and activity against this most colossal evil of our time. In our country the responsibility for drunkenness rests not with the illiterate, blasphemous, ex-prison convicts who operate the 250,000 saloons of our Nation, nor yet with the 250,000 finished products of the saloon who go down into drunkards' graves every year, but with the sober, respectable, hard-working, voting citizens of our ...
— Questionable Amusements and Worthy Substitutes • J. M. Judy

... why this girl who was rather the best of her sort chose to marry an illiterate apprentice of her uncle's, Thomas Lincoln, whose name in the forest was spelled "Linkhorn." He was a shiftless fellow, never succeeding at anything, who could neither read nor write. At the time of his birth, twenty-eight years before, his parents—drifting, ...
— Lincoln • Nathaniel Wright Stephenson

... people of Massachusetts.... It is an art to rise above what we have been taught.... All great men are seen to possess this freedom. They derive their standard from their own natures, and their observations on life are so natural and spontaneous that it would seem as if the most illiterate person with a scrap of common-sense would have made the same.... We become wiser with them, and know not how the difficult appears easy and the ...
— Essays • Ralph Waldo Emerson

... transacting, to the diversion not only of the rude and illiterate populace, but to that of the little gentry with Master Merton, a poor, half-naked Black came up, and humbly implored their charity. He had served, he told them, on board an English vessel, and even showed them the scars of several wounds he had received; but now he was discharged, and without ...
— The History of Sandford and Merton • Thomas Day

... cocoa, the cacao-bean and the beverage, as if it were coco. The word dispatch, from It. dispaccio, had been in English use for some 250 years when Johnson's Dictionary appeared, and had been correctly spelt by everybody (that is by everybody but the illiterate) with dis-. This was Johnson's own spelling both before and after he published the dictionary, as may be seen in his Letters edited by Dr. G. Birkbeck Hill[13]. It was also the spelling of all the writers whom Johnson quoted. But by some inexplicable error, the word got ...
— The evolution of English lexicography • James Augustus Henry Murray

... transpired that might not have transpired in a parlor, if there had not been so many people in the house, and yet these illiterate and ungodly saw mill hands went off and told a story that would make angels blush. It is possible that the elder did wrong in not offering to go with them and look for the mooley cow, but we should not chide him for that. He probably had not time to take up a collection of his thoughts, and no ...
— Peck's Sunshine - Being a Collection of Articles Written for Peck's Sun, - Milwaukee, Wis. - 1882 • George W. Peck

... boldness of Peter and John, and supposing that they were illiterate and common men, they wondered, and perceived that they had been with Jesus; [4:14]and seeing the man standing with them cured, they could not dispute it. [4:15]And commanding them to withdraw from the Sanhedrim, they ...
— The New Testament • Various

... with its own peculiar doctrines. However widely may be separated in belief the extreme Roman Catholic and the extreme Protestant, they both appeal to the same Bible. However far apart may be the philosophic Vedantin and the most illiterate Vallabhacharya, they both regard the same Vedas as supreme. However bitterly opposed to each other may be the Shias and the Sunnis, they both regard as sacred the same Kuran. Controversies and quarrels may arise as to the meaning of texts, but the Book itself, ...
— Esoteric Christianity, or The Lesser Mysteries • Annie Besant

... influence should mislead and miseducate the public mind! They proclaim, "This is the white man's Government," and the whole coil of copperheads echo the same sentiment, and upstart, jealous Republicans join the cry. Is it any wonder ignorant foreigners and illiterate natives should learn this doctrine, and be led to despise and maltreat a whole ...
— American Eloquence, Volume IV. (of 4) - Studies In American Political History (1897) • Various

... the wisest and the most moral of men, Cicero treated as an usurer, and the pedant Athenaeus as illiterate; the latter points out as a Socratic folly our philosopher disserting on the nature of justice before his judges, who were so many thieves. The malignant buffoonery of Aristophanes treats him much worse; but he, as Jortin says, was a great ...
— Curiosities of Literature, Vol. 1 (of 3) • Isaac D'Israeli

... members distributed themselves throughout the town and continued to spread Raboff's "message." Borykin, the master-carpenter, took employment under a certain Grigorieff, and succeeded in converting all his fellow-workers. Finally Grigorieff's house was turned into a church for the new sect, and an illiterate woman named Vassilisa became their prophetess. Under the influence of the general excitement, she would fall into trances and give extravagant and incomprehensible discourses, while her listeners laughed, danced and wept ecstatically. ...
— Modern Saints and Seers • Jean Finot

... new work began. I received and forwarded telegrams, wrote various reports, and made fair copies of the notes of requirements, the complaints, and the reports sent to the office by the illiterate foremen and workmen. But for the greater part of the day I did nothing but walk about the room waiting for telegrams, or made a boy sit in the lodge while I went for a walk in the garden, until the boy ran to tell me that there ...
— The Chorus Girl and Other Stories • Anton Chekhov

... Negroes, and illiterate persons of all complexions, set up as doctors. Old Joe Pye and Sabbatus were famous Indian healers. Indian squaws, such as Molly Orcutt, sold many a decoction of leaves and barks to the ...
— Customs and Fashions in Old New England • Alice Morse Earle

... first time in his life, I do not think he expected in the least that his performance would enable me to boast of his Tom Broadbent as a genuine stage classic. Mrs Patrick Campbell was famous before I wrote for her, but not for playing illiterate cockney flower-maidens. And in the case which is provoking me to all these impertinences, I am quite sure that Miss Gertrude Kingston, who first made her reputation as an impersonator of the most delightfully feather-headed and ...
— Great Catherine • George Bernard Shaw

... strength may be seen in the attempt of an illiterate laborer to sign his name. He grips the pen as though it were a crowbar, and puts forth enough strength to handle a twenty-pound weight. Learning to dance, or to skate, or to row a boat, is usually accompanied in the beginning by this ...
— The Psychology of Singing - A Rational Method of Voice Culture Based on a Scientific Analysis of All Systems, Ancient and Modern • David C. Taylor

... the part of the pier where those bags should be stacked. Trained checkers read the marks on the bags as the laborers carry them past, and tell the carrier where the bag should be placed. To the illiterate laborers the checker's cries of "blue check," "green ball," "red heart," "black hand," and the like, are more understandable than such indications ...
— All About Coffee • William H. Ukers

... failed to see that the boy who attempts to prematurely support his widowed mother may lower wages, add an illiterate member to the community, and arrest the development of a capable workingman. As she has failed to see that the rules which obtain in regard to the age of marriage in her own family may not apply to the ...
— Democracy and Social Ethics • Jane Addams

... strength of this notice, goes on and expects great things. You, and everybody that is not convinced of the being of Knockers, will laugh at these things, for they sound like dreams; so does every dark science. Can you make any illiterate man believe that it is possible to know the distance of two places by looking at them? Human knowledge is but of small extent, its bounds are within our view, we see nothing beyond these; the great universal creation contains powers, ...
— Welsh Folk-Lore - a Collection of the Folk-Tales and Legends of North Wales • Elias Owen

... amongst the many benighted members of the House of Commons. We would have the subjects so chosen that they should entirely supersede Oldfield's Representative History; never forgetting the wants of the most illiterate. For instance, for the politicians on the fifth form, the SIBTHORPS and PLUMPTRES, whose education in their youth has been shamefully neglected, we would have a nice pictorial political alphabet. We do not pride ourselves, be it understood, ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Volume 1, Complete • Various

... and so wonderful that those who look upon it with the seeing eye and the understanding heart catch glimpses of the King in His beauty through the fairness of the land that is very far off. On past the mossy stone, like an overgrown and illiterate milestone, which marks the boundary between Mershire and Salopshire; and then through a typical English village, noteworthy because the rites of Mayday, with May-queen and May-pole to boot, are still celebrated there exactly as they ...
— The Farringdons • Ellen Thorneycroft Fowler

... the highest degree the most cultivated, and to the widest extent the less cultivated. Lear and the Divine Comedy exhaust the thinking of the profoundest student, yet subdue to hushed and breathless attention the illiterate minds that know not what study means. The "Last Judgment," the "Transfiguration," the "Niobe," and the "Dying Gladiator" excite alike the intelligent rapture of artists, and the unintelligent admiration of those to whom art and its principles are a sealed book. Handel's Israel ...
— Early Reviews of English Poets • John Louis Haney

... taunted with my inaccuracies; I have been called a fool; an idiot; an uneducated dolt; and an illiterate cow! This is far from kind, ...
— Terribly Intimate Portraits • Noel Coward

... thence to human-kind. But as ambassadors, when long from home, For new instructions to their princes come; So poets, who your precepts have forgot, Return, and beg they may be better taught: Follies and faults elsewhere by them are shown, 20 But by your manners they correct their own. The illiterate writer, empiric-like, applies To minds diseased unsafe, chance remedies: The learn'd in schools, where knowledge first began, Studies with care the anatomy of man; Sees virtue, vice, and passions in their ...
— The Poetical Works of John Dryden, Vol II - With Life, Critical Dissertation, and Explanatory Notes • John Dryden

... their own, are welcomed into what are called "select circles" with as much warmth as though they were millionaires. In New York, however, men and women are judged by their bank accounts. The most illiterate boor, the most unprincipled knave, finds every fashionable door open to him without reserve, while St. Peter himself, if he came "without purse or scrip," would see it closed in his face. Money makes up for every deficiency in morals, ...
— The Secrets Of The Great City • Edward Winslow Martin



Words linked to "Illiterate" :   literate, nonreader, ignoramus, uneducated person, semiliterate, preliterate, analphabet, know nothing, uneducated, unlettered, literacy, analphabetic



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