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Contrariness   Listen
noun
Contrariness  n.  State or quality of being contrary; opposition; inconsistency; contrariety; perverseness; obstinacy.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Contrariness" Quotes from Famous Books



... burn anthracite. It looks well, with its highly polished brass casing and funnel reaching up through the deck above, but it has a very decided will of its own. Sometimes, in a fit of contrariness, it persists in blazing like a blast furnace on muggy days until its sides are nearly red-hot and the heat of the wardroom is well-nigh intolerable. But on chilly mornings it occasionally rings a change by refusing to burn at all, and merely vomits forth clouds ...
— Stand By! - Naval Sketches and Stories • Henry Taprell Dorling

... felt. It had been smoldering almost ever since she quitted him. "Reprehensible!" groans a moralist. Very. Everybody knows that, as Afy would say. But her heart, you see, had not done with human passions, and they work ill, and contrariness, let the word stand, critic, if you please, and ...
— East Lynne • Mrs. Henry Wood

... "that when a girl—a coquette girl like Beth—is as sure of a man as she is of Rob, she gets a touch of contrariness or offishness or something. She said it would have been too prosaic and cut and dried if they had gone away for a day in the woods and come back engaged. She ...
— Our Next-Door Neighbors • Belle Kanaris Maniates

... say the world was full of them!" exclaimed Helen. But her beauty, which was radiant in the morning light, took the contrariness from her words. ...
— The Voyage Out • Virginia Woolf

... has been the unconscious motive which has caused the man to enter the bond, and naturally, when he has gained his wishes he ceases to endeavour consciously to attract the woman. And then one of two things happens; either she grows to love him more for a time, because of that contrariness in human beings which always puts abnormal value upon the thing which is slipping out of reach—or she herself becomes indifferent; and then it is a mere chance if they both, or either of them, possess character and a sense of duty as to how the marriage goes ...
— Three Things • Elinor Glyn

... really to soothe Denny, half deliberately to draw him out, "why get all boiled up about the contrariness of ordinary little bugs?" ...
— The Raid on the Termites • Paul Ernst

... Madame David's to have a black velvet gown fitted. Madame called on Jean Hay to attend her in the fitting and to hang the long skirt properly—for it is a difficult job to hang a velvet skirt, and Jean Hay is thought to be very expert anent the set and swing of silk velvet, which has a certain contrariness of its own. Let that pass. I was kneeling on the floor, setting the train, when Mrs. Baird said: "I suppose you have heard, Madame, the last escapade of that wild son of the great Dr. Macrae?" Then I was all ...
— An Orkney Maid • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... collapse was one. It may be, too, that Mr. Romaine's British righteousness accorded rather ill with the weapon he used so unsparingly. Of Fenn I need only say, that the luscious rogue shouldered through the doorway as though he had a public duty to discharge, and only the contrariness of circumstances had prevented his discharging it before. He cringed to Mr. Romaine, who held him and the whole nexus of his villainies in the hollow of his hand. He was even obsequiously eager to ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 20 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... certain morning with a distinct and well-defined grouch against the world as he had found it; a grouch quite different from the sullen imp of contrariness that had possessed him lately. He did not know just what had caused the grouch, and he did not care. He did know, however, that he objected to the look of Cash's overshoes that stood pigeon-toed beside Cash's bed on the opposite ...
— Cabin Fever • B. M. Bower

... found himself in that sorry plight and considered that wherewith he was afflicted of tribulation and the contrariness of his fortune, in that he had been a king and was now returned to shackles and prison and hunger, he wept and groaned and lamented and ...
— Tales from the Arabic Volumes 1-3 • John Payne

... his readiness, his prudence, and his other virtues he has known how to earn the affections of every one." Unfortunately, there was one important exception, as the cardinal was forced to add: "The damsel, either out of her own contrariness, or because so induced by others, which is easier to believe, constantly refuses ...
— The Life of Cesare Borgia • Raphael Sabatini

... he was in love with being in love. But because you want Miss Van Buren, out of pure contrariness he thinks now that he wants her. Beware of her kindness. If you should be deluded by it into proposing, she'd send you about your business, and perhaps accept the other man because she was wretched, and didn't quite realize what ...
— The Chauffeur and the Chaperon • C. N. Williamson

... van Cannan, with moody eyes. He looked to Christine like a man suffering with sickness of the soul. Everyone supposed the rest-cure definitely settled on, but, with the contrariness of an ailing child, he suddenly announced determinedly, "I shall leave for East London ...
— Blue Aloes - Stories of South Africa • Cynthia Stockley

... you have really been so kind and hospitable and charming to me that I only want to go away out of mere contrariness, eh? ...
— The Devil's Disciple • George Bernard Shaw

... little earlier than the rest, for reasons that had no connection with the afternoon's sport, each of them having a pressing engagement that could not be broken. "Babe" had been nick-named in the spirit of contrariness that often marks the ways of boys; for he was an unusually tall, thin fellow; and so far as any one knew, had never shirked trouble, so that he could not be called timid ...
— Boy Scouts on a Long Hike - Or, To the Rescue in the Black Water Swamps • Archibald Lee Fletcher

... in this happy glamour of assured success, and, by the inevitable contrariness of things, dreamed that he was falling over a steep precipice on The Dutchman's back, and that at the bottom Mortimer and Allis were holding a blanket to catch him in his fall. Even in his imaginative sleep, he was saved from a dependence upon this totally inadequate receptacle ...
— Thoroughbreds • W. A. Fraser



Words linked to "Contrariness" :   crankiness, orneriness, unruliness, cussedness, wilfulness, willfulness



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