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Portentously   Listen
Portentously

adverb
1.
In a portentous manner.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Portentously" Quotes from Famous Books



... key, he noted that all the blinds in the house were closed and wondered whether his mother had gone to sleep again. After a suitable interval, she opened the door, clad in her best black silk, and portentously solemn. ...
— Flower of the Dusk • Myrtle Reed

... of destiny or heredity permeates all the works of this portentously ambitious series. Details may be repellant. One should not "smell" a picture, as the artists say. If one does, he gets an impression merely of a small blotch of paint. The vast canvas should be studied as a whole. Frailties are certainly not ...
— A Love Episode • Emile Zola

... it, felt angry, hid her anger. Kennicott was yawning, more portentously. The room smelled stale. She shrugged and ...
— Main Street • Sinclair Lewis

... took his station by a table on which a glass of water had been placed upon a vivid red cover: he portentously cleared his throat. "The Lord giveth," he began.... It was noon, pellucidly clear, still, hot; the foliage on the mountainsides was like solid walls of greenery rising to a canopy, a veil, of azure. Partridges whistled clear and flutelike from a nearby cover; the stream flashed in the sun, ...
— Mountain Blood - A Novel • Joseph Hergesheimer

... detested. But the first principles of morals and politics, which have long been settled, acquire the authority of self-evident truths, which, when first discussed, may have been vehemently and portentously contested. John Locke, a kindred soul to Algernon Sydney, seven years after his death published an elaborate system of government, in which he declares the "false principles and foundation of Sir Robert Filmer and his followers are detected and overthrown." ...
— Memoir of the Life of John Quincy Adams. • Josiah Quincy

... looked at the two beings whom he instinctively hated much and feared more. The leaves swarmed with birds, robins and wrens and catbirds and all the feathered tribe keeping up an incessant quivering and trilling, while a distant woodpecker drummed portentously on the trunk of an old oak. They too saw the passing youths, but since no hand was raised to hurt them they sang, in their way, ...
— The Hunters of the Hills • Joseph Altsheler

... Opposition, "that gorgeous toilette which you sported In Paris last spring, at the grand presentation, When you quite turned the head of the head of the nation; And by all the grand court were so very much courted." The end of the nose was portentously tipped up, And both the bright eyes shot forth indignation, As she burst upon me with the fierce exclamation, "I have worn it three times at the least calculation, And that and most of my dresses are ...
— The Book of Humorous Verse • Various

... influence of Voltaire, Rousseau, and the Encyclopaedists, with Beaumarchais, reacting against the accumulated political and ecclesiastical oppressions of ages, precipitated upon France, it might safely be assumed that letters would be silent. But the nation meantime was portentously preparing material for a literature which many wondering centuries to follow would ...
— Classic French Course in English • William Cleaver Wilkinson

... herself time for a second thought, she rushed into the shop, pale, wild, desperate in gesture and expression, scowling portentously, and looking far better qualified to do fierce battle with a housebreaker than to stand smiling behind the counter, bartering small wares for a copper recompense. Any ordinary customer, indeed, would have turned his back and fled. And yet there was nothing fierce ...
— The House of the Seven Gables • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... employer, had been left to take care of the house and to assist in preparing the refreshments, As the little party approached the cottage door they were surprised to see her standing on the threshold, now portentously wagging her black-capped head, now burying her face in her apron, evidently a prey to strong emotion, though of what particular kind it was ...
— North, South and Over the Sea • M.E. Francis (Mrs. Francis Blundell)

... accounts than anything I ever saw, except Wodrow, without being so portentously tiresome and so desperately overborne with footnotes, proclamations, acts of Parliament, and citations ...
— The Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson - Volume 1 • Robert Louis Stevenson

... already alluded to my excavations in Jersey, and need not enter into fuller details here. But I should like to put on record the opinion borne in upon me by such first-hand experience as I have had that cultural advance in Mousterian days was almost as portentously slow as ever it had been before. The human deposits in the Jersey cave are in some places about ten feet thick, and the fact that they fall into two strata separated by a sterile layer that appears to consist of the dust of ...
— Progress and History • Various

... English Parliament (I speak of both Houses) only two great men; only two considerate and clear-sighted politicians; Chatham and Burke. Three or four can say clever things; several have sonorous voices; many vibrate sharp comminations from the embrasures of portentously slit sleeves; and there are those to be found who deliver their oracles out of wigs as worshipful as the curls of Jupiter, however they may be grumbled at by the flour-mills they have laid under such heavy contribution; yet nearly ...
— Imaginary Conversations and Poems - A Selection • Walter Savage Landor

... perceived at once, by the expression of the man who thus addressed him, that he had fallen into a trap, and he remained with his mouth wide open and his eyes portentously staring. ...
— Twenty Years After • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... The door-bell pealed portentously through the house, echoing and re-echoing through the empty rooms. No answer. Presently it rang again, insistently, and Elaine, with her snowy palfrey, ...
— At the Sign of the Jack O'Lantern • Myrtle Reed

... young man of the book, is, in Mr. Cruikshank's portraits of him, no favorite of ours. The lad seems to wish to make up for the natural insignificance of his face by frowning on all occasions most portentously. This figure, borrowed from the compositor's desk, will give a notion of what we mean. Wild's face is too violent for the great man of history (if we may call Fielding history), but this is in consonance with the ranting, ...
— George Cruikshank • William Makepeace Thackeray

... on the verge of immortality. And there were the infrequent, enormous stars that wheel on immeasurable orbits, so distant that they seem of all transitory things most transitory. Prothero was one of these. There was not much chance for him in his generation. His poems were too portentously inspired. They were the poems of a saint, a seer, an exile from life and time. He stood alone on the ultimate, untrodden shores, watching strange tides and the courses of unknown worlds. On any reasonable calculation he could not hope to make himself heard for ...
— The Creators - A Comedy • May Sinclair

... beams out at last! "Victory's our own—'tis written in that Book "Upon whose leaves none but the angels look, "That ISLAM'S sceptre shall beneath the power "Of her great foe fall broken in that hour "When the moon's mighty orb before all eyes "From NEKSHEB'S Holy Well portentously shall rise! "Now turn and see!"—They turned, and, as he spoke, A sudden splendor all around them broke, And they beheld an orb, ample and bright, Rise from the Holy Well and cast its light[123] Round the rich city and the plain for miles,— Flinging such ...
— The Complete Poems of Sir Thomas Moore • Thomas Moore et al

... we may remark, parenthetically, but we may admit that Jefferies saw too deeply into nature's workings, and had too sensuous a joy in life to interpret all Nature's doings, a la Wordsworth, and lend them a portentously moral significance. ...
— Amaryllis at the Fair • Richard Jefferies

... and spoke for both as he strode toward the door. "Lead us to it, Thumbscrew," he swaggered portentously; "lead us to it, ol'-timer!" And the door slammed ...
— The She Boss - A Western Story • Arthur Preston Hankins

... his pocket bulging with bank notes, Mr. Bangs proceeded sadly, but with determination, to the private office of Mr. Barbour, his cousin's "second secretary." There, producing from another pocket a huge envelope, portentously daubed and sealed with red wax, he handed it to Barbour. It contained the two stock certificates, each signed in blank, Martha's for two hundred and fifty shares, Captain Jethro's for four hundred. The envelope and the wax he had procured at a stationer's near the South Station. ...
— Galusha the Magnificent • Joseph C. Lincoln

... pack and the multifarious articles that draped his person, he took off his coat, folded it neatly and laid it by, which done, he slowly rolled up his shirt sleeves, eyeing me fiercely and scowling portentously the while. Now as I watched him, my sweating palms tight-clenched, my jaws hard-locked to prevent my teeth from chattering, the thought occurred to me that the hurts I was about to endure and endeavour to inflict should not only save Diana from ...
— Peregrine's Progress • Jeffery Farnol

... done; that her fright itself betrayed her; and that she would now give heaven and earth to save the child. "Let us hope she will!" I said, looking at my watch and trying to time poor Ambient; whereupon my companion repeated all portentously ...
— The Author of Beltraffio • Henry James

... after so portentously marvellous an escape as the one just related, the unlucky couple might be allowed a short respite at least from the persecutions of adverse fortune. But perils in love succeed without an interval to perils in war. It is the invariable rule of all Greek romances, ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXXXIX. January, 1844. Vol. LV. • Various

... there are our artillerymen stalking from battery to battery—all hung up aloft facing the west—or "each standing by his gun" with lighted match, moving or motionless, Shadow-figures, and all clothed in black-blue uniform, with blood-red facings portentously glancing in the sun, as he strives to struggle into heaven. The Generalissimo of all the forces, who is he but—Spring?—Hand in hand with Spring, Sabbath descends from heaven unto earth; and are not ...
— Recreations of Christopher North, Volume 2 • John Wilson

... that his sentiment apparently belonged to that species of emotion of which, by the testimony of the poets, the very name and essence is oddity. One night he slept but half an hour; he found his thoughts taking a turn which excited him portentously. He walked up and down his room half the night. It looked out on the Arno; the noise of the river came in at the open window; he felt like dressing and going down into the streets. Toward morning he flung himself into a chair; though he was wide awake he was less excited. ...
— Roderick Hudson • Henry James

... reprimand at once. "My dear nephew Augustus," she began, in her fine, elegant handwriting. That was always her mode of address to me when something was coming, while at other times it would be, less portentously, "My dear Augustus," or "My dear nephew "; but whenever my name and my relationship to her occurred conjointly, I took the communication away with me to some corner, ...
— Lady Baltimore • Owen Wister

... from where it's got a way of coming," he gave forth portentously. "It'll come from America. How they manage to get hold of so much of it there is past me. But they've got it, dang 'em, and they're ready to spend it for what they want, though they're a sharp lot. Twelve ...
— The Shuttle • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... o' doin' that?" Mandy inquired, stretching herself and yawning portentously. "We'll jist muss it all up in about two minutes. When you've worked in a mill as long as I have you'll git over the notion of makin' your bed, for hit's ...
— The Power and the Glory • Grace MacGowan Cooke

... practised by none of his three immediate predecessors, though he is often credited with its abolition. His financial methods were successful immediately, but really accumulated burdens which became portentously heavy. ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol XII. - Modern History • Arthur Mee

... oh, boy! that first five minutes!" Freddie gazed portentously through his eye-glass. Then he seemed to be undergoing some internal struggle, for he gulped once or twice. "That first five minutes!" he said, and paused again. A moment's silent self-communion, and he went on with a rush. "I say, listen. Shall ...
— The Little Warrior - (U.K. Title: Jill the Reckless) • P. G. Wodehouse

... the book, we find a good deal like other heroes,—a little more natural than most, perhaps, but still portentously noble and perfect. He does not interest us much; but we greatly admire the heroine, Martha Deane, whom he loves and marries. In the study of her character and that of her father, Mr. Taylor is perfectly at home, and ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 17, No. 104, June, 1866 • Various

... thousand pound fur coats, what are quarter million incomes?'" She looked up from the page with a histrionic movement of the head; her orange coiffure nodded portentously. Denis looked at it, fascinated. Was it the Real Thing and henna, he wondered, or was it one of those Complete Transformations one ...
— Crome Yellow • Aldous Huxley



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