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Encumbrance   Listen
noun
Encumbrance  n.  
1.
That which encumbers; a burden which impedes action, or renders it difficult and laborious; a clog; an impediment. See Incumbrance.
2.
(Law) Same as Incumbrance.
Synonyms: Burden; clog; impediment; check; hindrance.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Encumbrance" Quotes from Famous Books



... country. We continued to remove four or five c. every other day, and came on the 7th to the goodly river Shind. The 18th, the king passed through between two mountains, the road having been cut through the woods, but with so much trouble and difficulty, and so much encumbrance to the baggage, that it was left behind, without provisions for man and beast. This day likewise I lost my tents and baggage, but found them again at midnight, having been obliged till then to take up my lodging under a tree. This part of the country is much ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Volume IX. • Robert Kerr

... the dingy thickets of laurel and yew were everywhere shorn away; and to the east all the windows stood free and open. Moreover, two men were at work in the front garden, clearing the flagged paths, traced in the eighteenth century, from encumbrance, and laying down turf in a green circle round one of the small classical fountains that stood on either ...
— The Mating of Lydia • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... standing aft, talking together in low tones. Probably they were discussing at that very moment the best plan of disposing of the boy, who had become a dangerous encumbrance ...
— Brave Tom - The Battle That Won • Edward S. Ellis

... invited, or commanded, to attend on the bridal accordingly, at which there were but few persons present; for James, on such occasions, preferred a snug privacy, which gave him liberty to lay aside the encumbrance, as he felt it to be, of his regal dignity. The company was very small, and indeed there were at least two persons absent whose presence might have been expected. The first of these was the Lady Dalgarno, the state of whose health, as well as the recent death of her husband, precluded her attendance ...
— The Fortunes of Nigel • Sir Walter Scott

... Some lean high fir-trees threw this part into a shadow, and so it happened that as I felt my way wearily on, I fell over a stone. The fall lost me the last of my senses: I but heard some of the Stewarts curse me for an encumbrance as they stumbled over me and passed on, heedless of my fate, and saw, as in a dwam, one of them who had abraded his knees by his stumble over my body, turn round with a drawn knife that glinted ...
— John Splendid - The Tale of a Poor Gentleman, and the Little Wars of Lorn • Neil Munro

... not take offence at it; but that any further interposition on their parts would have ill become them to make, or her to bear: that even while she was a private person, and exposed to much danger from the malice of her enemies, she had always declined that engagement, as an encumbrance; much more at present must she persevere in that sentiment, when the charge of a great kingdom was committed to her, and her life ought to be devoted to its interests: that as England was her husband, wedded to her by this pledge (and here she exhibited her finger with the CORONATION RING upon ...
— Coronation Anecdotes • Giles Gossip

... bloodless as she turned from Fred's door. It was not hard to work for the children—to support and domineer over Susan; but it was hard for such an alert uncompromising little soul to tolerate that useless hulk—that heavy encumbrance of a man, for whom hope and life were dead. She bit her lip as she discharged her sharp stinging arrow at him through the half-opened door, and then went down singing, to take her place at the table which her own hands had spread—which ...
— The Doctor's Family • Mrs. (Margaret) Oliphant

... encumbrance was usually expected of Laura and Mrs. Madison, but to their surprise Cora offered a sprightly rejoinder and presently dropped behind them with Mr. Trumble. Mr. Trumble was also surprised and, as ...
— The Flirt • Booth Tarkington

... was clearly of opinion that he had better take his nephew, with the encumbrance of Mary Lowther, and make them both welcome to the house. "We have all heard so much good of Miss Lowther, you know," said Mrs. Brownlow, "and she is not at all the ...
— The Vicar of Bullhampton • Anthony Trollope

... a sort of chap I despises," remarks Tom, pointing to a steady-looking man, without encumbrance, who had just entered the yard, evidently a coachman to a pious family; "see him handle a hoss. Smear—smear—like bees-waxing a table. Nothing varminty about him—nothing of this sort of thing (spreading himself out ...
— Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 1, September 12, 1841 • Various

... the forty thousand might turn out to be only a fraction of what it was worth; if it were allowed to lie there as it was, the money was simply thrown away. But in any case, they wanted to have a clear title, without encumbrance, and therefore they offered Isak five hundred ...
— Growth of the Soil • Knut Hamsun

... arrived, and it was time for Mr. Pickwick to issue forth on his delicate errand. Resisting Sam's tender of his greatcoat, in order that he might have no encumbrance in scaling the wall, he set forth, followed by ...
— The Pickwick Papers • Charles Dickens

... a quiet smile; and he sighed faintly, as though he wished it were permissible to rid himself thus easily of his golden encumbrance. ...
— The Golden Shoemaker - or 'Cobbler' Horn • J. W. Keyworth

... this singing man, is one of Barbara Brodie's 'finds.' Not much do I think of any of them! That handsome scholar she brought here turned out an unbearable encumbrance. I believe she paid him to go back to Edinburgh. That Aberdeen man, who wanted to invest money in Kirkwall had to borrow two pounds from grandfather to take him back to where he came from. That witty, good-looking Irishman ...
— An Orkney Maid • Amelia Edith Huddleston Barr

... will, when read, in some degree consoled Mr. Marrapit for the sniffling encumbrance he took back with him to Herons' Holt after the funeral. It was a simple and trustful will—commended George into the keeping of her brother Christopher Marrapit; desired that George should be entered in her late husband's—the medical—profession; and for ...
— Once Aboard The Lugger • Arthur Stuart-Menteth Hutchinson

... concluded the place empty, and half crawled, half tumbled down the stair to the vestry, where the sexton was waiting him. It did not restore his lost composure to discover, in searching for his handkerchief, that the encumbrance of the gown had made him put his hand ten times into the same pocket, instead of five times into each, and that in the other his manuscript lay as safe as it ...
— Alec Forbes of Howglen • George MacDonald

... to me one of their life-jackets—an invaluable companion if a long immersion in the water is to be undergone. But for convenience in working the ropes and sails I was content to use the less bulky life-belt. It is conveniently arranged, and you soon forget it as an encumbrance. Indeed on one occasion I walked up to a house without recollecting that my life-belt ...
— The Voyage Alone in the Yawl "Rob Roy" • John MacGregor

... "I will relieve you of that—encumbrance," and he pointed to the pistol yet gripped in Mr. Chichester's right hand. Without a word Mr. Chichester rose, and leaving the weapon upon the table, turned and walked to the window, while Mr. Dalton, having unlocked ...
— The Amateur Gentleman • Jeffery Farnol et al

... sayd he was commonly called Feane. Then asked he where he was borne; Within two myle of Fayle (sayd he) in Kyle. Then sayd the accuser, I repent that euer such a poore man as you should put these noble Lordes to so great encumbrance thys day by your vayne speakyng. And I must speake (sayd he) as God geueth me grace, and I beleue I haue sayd no euill to hurt any body. Would God (sayd the Accuser) ye had neuer spoken, but you are brought forth for so horrible crimes of heresie, ...
— The Works of John Knox, Vol. 1 (of 6) • John Knox

... sense of gap or blank, neither any sense of there being a single member, or fragment of a member, which could be spared. Whatever has nothing to do, whatever could go without being missed, is not ornament; it is deformity and encumbrance. Away with it. And, on the other hand, care must be taken either to diffuse the ornament which we permit, in due relation over the whole building, or so to concentrate it, as never to leave a sense of its having got into knots, and curdled upon some points, ...
— The Stones of Venice, Volume I (of 3) • John Ruskin

... extent. She became subject to fits of an epileptic nature, and having injured herself in some of these, she allowed the injuries to be attributed to her husband, whom she had now grown to regard as an encumbrance. Though she was aware that he was not insane, she allowed him to be removed to an asylum, where confinement soon completed the work begun by her own conduct. The Abbe Faujas having resolutely resisted her advances, her ...
— A Zola Dictionary • J. G. Patterson

... When a man does that, her intuition prompted her to know that it is more than likely that he brings a woman with him. It is always possible for a woman to recognize—apart from her own identity—that her sex is an encumbrance to most men which they cannot easily shake off. Witness the generous criticism of a woman upon any husband but her own. Combine with this intuitive knowledge the fact—hitherto unrecorded, even by Traill to Sally—that ...
— Sally Bishop - A Romance • E. Temple Thurston

... "That's an encumbrance; you should not tie yourself to drag it about. You are unalterable, of course, but circumstances are not, and as it happens, women are more subject to them ...
— The Shaving of Shagpat • George Meredith

... long immersed in it; nor were we likely to suffer in any other way. Really, for the sake of protection from the cold, garments were altogether unnecessary; and it is not surprising that the dark-skinned natives should consider them an encumbrance, and ...
— The Wanderers - Adventures in the Wilds of Trinidad and Orinoco • W.H.G. Kingston

... crushed by the imperial forces, or put to the ban of the empire', and his territories were assigned to any one who would undertake to conquer them.[8] Their attendance at our viceroyal court would be a sad encumbrance;[9] and our Governor- General could not well conciliate them by matrimonial alliances, unless we were to alter a good deal in their favour our law against polygamy; nor would it be desirable to 'let slip the dogs of war' once more ...
— Rambles and Recollections of an Indian Official • William Sleeman

... edition of Waverley, to Longman, Murray, or Blackwood—in the hope that the prospect of being let in to the profits of the already established favorite, would overcome effectually the hesitation of one or other of these houses about venturing on the encumbrance which Constable seemed to shrink from with such pertinacity; but upon this ingenious proposition Scott at once set his veto. ...
— Memoirs of the Life of Sir Walter Scott, Volume V (of 10) • John Gibson Lockhart

... that it is possible for the individual to have double or treble or multiple personalities. Thus the belief in the existence of soul conceived by the common sense turns out not only to be irrational, but a useless encumbrance on the religious mind. Therefore Zen declares that there is no such thing as soul, and that mind and body are one. Hwui Chung (Ye-chu), a famous disciple of the Sixth Patriarch in China, to quote an example, one day asked a monk: ...
— The Religion of the Samurai • Kaiten Nukariya

... that. You have had a narrow escape, I assure you, Barebone. That man, the Captain of the 'Petite Jeanne,' is well known. There are plenty of people in France who want to get quietly rid of some family encumbrance—a man in the way, you understand, a son too many, a husband too much, a stepson who will inherit—the world is full of superfluities. Well, the Captain of the 'Petite Jeanne' will take them a voyage for their health to the Iceland fisheries. They are so far and so remote—the Iceland ...
— The Last Hope • Henry Seton Merriman

... winter, one should not forget the question of rain. It is evident, then, that where there is frost there can be no rain; and accordingly, for nearly six months in the year, you can dispense altogether with that most unpleasant encumbrance, the umbrella. For it must be remembered that in Russia the snow does not fall in the soft feathery flakes to which we are accustomed in the more temperate latitudes. It comes down in showers of microscopic darts, which, instead ...
— Russia - As Seen and Described by Famous Writers • Various

... walls. The bell ceased its monotonous and mournful note, and the tall, gaunt form of the divine moved through the narrow aisle to its usual post, with the air of one who had already more than half rejected the burthen of bodily encumbrance. A searching and stern glance was thrown around, as if he possessed an instinctive power to detect all delinquents; and then seating himself, the deep stillness, that always preceded the exercises, ...
— The Wept of Wish-Ton-Wish • James Fenimore Cooper

... telling her she must be very brave, explained my plan, pointing out I must not miss the Saturday steamer. She should follow on the next, and I would leave her $20,000. But she pleaded to go with me, said she would be no encumbrance, would ride mule-back to the railway, no matter how far away. I then called Nunn and told him I should leave him in charge of the baggage, and that we were going to set out at once. I praised his fidelity, and informed him ...
— Bidwell's Travels, from Wall Street to London Prison - Fifteen Years in Solitude • Austin Biron Bidwell

... organing, and other racketing, held over that spot of God's Earth,—if Man were but a Patent Digester, and the Belly with its adjuncts the grand Reality? Fox turned from them, with tears and a sacred scorn, back to his Leather-parings and his Bible. Mountains of encumbrance, higher than AEtna, had been heaped over that Spirit: but it was a Spirit, and would not lie buried there. Through long days and nights of silent agony, it struggled and wrestled, with a man's force, to be free: how its prison-mountains heaved and swayed tumultuously, as the giant spirit shook them ...
— Sartor Resartus - The Life and Opinions of Herr Teufelsdrockh • Thomas Carlyle

... some time before, cunning Christopher gave his consent, curiously enough, to what was nothing more or less than the setting up of a rival company of actors. In the first place, he probably looked upon his players as an encumbrance, since he was in the vein for operatic entertainments just then, and, furthermore, he pictured himself as a future monopolist controlling the destinies of two houses. For he never dreamed, did this haggling, pettifogging lawyer, that Swiney would swerve ...
— The Palmy Days of Nance Oldfield • Edward Robins

... procure, For such as by God's holy word will endure. By these former stories two things we may learn And profitably record in our remembrance: The first is God's Church from the devil's to discern: The second to mark what manifest resistance The truth of God hath, and what encumbrance It bringeth upon them that will it profess; Wherefore they must arm themselves to ...
— A Select Collection of Old English Plays, Vol. VI • Robert Dodsley

... Manual; "there is much good service to be got out of twenty-three well-drilled and well-chosen marines: look at those fellows, Mr. Griffith, and then tell me if you think them an encumbrance ...
— The Pilot • J. Fenimore Cooper

... wholly unsympathetic manner is uninfluenced by any change in his surroundings. Though in his sixty-sixth year, I have never heard him express any dissatisfaction at the occasional hardships which we have had to encounter. I had regarded his presence as an encumbrance to the expedition, but, as a matter of fact, I am now well convinced that his power of endurance is as great as my own. In temper he is naturally acid and sceptical. From the beginning he has never concealed his belief that ...
— The Lost World • Arthur Conan Doyle

... his affairs very carefully and closely, and I am sorry to say that they are in a very unsatisfactory condition. As I told you the other day, the estate has been encumbered and very seriously embarrassed for some time past, and the encumbrance has been increased of late, notwithstanding the admirable way in which you have managed the estate and the ...
— At Love's Cost • Charles Garvice

... prudent Athanaric, more attentive to his own than to the general safety, had fixed the camp of the Visigoths; with the firm resolution of opposing the victorious Barbarians, whom he thought it less advisable to provoke. The ordinary speed of the Huns was checked by the weight of baggage, and the encumbrance of captives; but their military skill deceived, and almost destroyed, the army of Athanaric. While the Judge of the Visigoths defended the banks of the Niester, he was encompassed and attacked by a numerous detachment of cavalry, who, ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 2 • Edward Gibbon

... to you, Mr. Grainger," said Sheila. "I fear I am going to prove a great encumbrance ...
— Chinkie's Flat and Other Stories - 1904 • Louis Becke

... household. The poor woman had reached a point where she dreaded the consequences of her death far more than death itself. Her tender solicitude for Balthazar showed itself in the resolution she had this day taken. By freeing his property from encumbrance she secured his independence, and prevented all future disputes by separating his interests from those of her children. She hoped to see him happy until she closed her eyes on earth, and she studied to transmit the tenderness of her own heart to Marguerite, trusting that ...
— The Alkahest • Honore de Balzac

... his forehead, and had buttoned his shooting-coat up round his chin. Harry had recommended to him a great-coat, in order that he might the better conceal his face; but Frank had found that the great-coat was an encumbrance to his arm. He put it on, and when thus clothed he had tried the whip, he found that he cut the air with much less potency than in the lighter garment. He contented himself, therefore, with looking down on ...
— Doctor Thorne • Anthony Trollope

... his torture, they manacled him hand and foot, and placed him on an unbridled and unbroken horse, and turned the animal loose, driving it off at its utmost speed, with shouts, delighted at witnessing its mode of managing with its living burden. The horse unable to shake off this new and strange encumbrance, made for the thickest covert of the woods and brambles, with the speed of the winds. It is easy to conjecture the position and suffering of the victim. The terrified animal exhausted itself in fruitless efforts to shake off its burden, and worn down and subdued, ...
— The First White Man of the West • Timothy Flint

... secret—," Mr. Clemens once said to me, "is to create humour independent of local conditions. In studying humanity as exhibited in the people and localities I best knew and understood, I have sought to winnow out the encumbrance of the local." And he significantly added—musingly—" Humour, like morality, ...
— Mark Twain • Archibald Henderson

... upon herself a risk and encumbrance that should be wholly my mother's. She has nothing to do with the girl, ...
— Gladys, the Reaper • Anne Beale

... the sand out of his mouth, and go on playing. Tots as they were, they pulled together and stood their ground in childish battles with doubled fists and uplifted voices, which usually prevailed against the other mother-tots. The quadroon nurse was looked upon as a huge encumbrance, only good to button up waists and panties and to brush and part hair; since it seemed to be a law of society that hair must ...
— The Awakening and Selected Short Stories • Kate Chopin

... kind to the unfortunate men. In Wills' diary we find frequent mention of the liberal hospitality they extended to them, but to a great extent the novelty soon died out, and the blacks began to find their white guests rather an encumbrance, and soon commenced shifting their camps to avoid the burden ...
— The History of Australian Exploration from 1788 to 1888 • Ernest Favenc

... of their return. They are furnished with a waggon and a slave, who drives the oxen and looks after them; but, unless there are women in the company, the waggon is sent back at the end of the journey as a needless encumbrance. While they are on the road they carry no provisions with them, yet they want for nothing, but are everywhere treated as if they were at home. If they stay in any place longer than a night, every ...
— Utopia • Thomas More

... especially Civitella girls, were quite beneath his notice. As for Annetta, he looked upon her with something like contempt, though he had a high respect for the fortune which must one day be hers. She was to be a necessary encumbrance of his future life, and for the present he meant to see as little of her as was conveniently possible without relinquishing his claims to her hand. She had admired him, in a way, until the arrival ...
— Casa Braccio, Volumes 1 and 2 (of 2) • F. Marion Crawford

... very ordinary circumstance for a man with a bundle of straw on his shoulders and overhanging his head, to go down the High Street. Edward saw him cross the bridge which divided the town from the country, place his shaggy encumbrance by the side of the road, ...
— Desperate Remedies • Thomas Hardy

... of the immense parcel of books with which he burdened himself. That part of the journeying public which loves to see some new thing puzzled itself mightily over the gentleman of full habit, who in addition to his not inconsiderable encumbrance of flesh and luggage, chose to carry about a shawl-strap loaded to utmost capacity with a composite mass of books, magazines, and newspapers. It was enormously heavy, and the way in which its component parts adhered ...
— The Bibliotaph - and Other People • Leon H. Vincent

... suddenly enveloped the happy man in flames at a moment when he was sprawled on his back with his whole right side, as it were, in a sling, Mr. Harold Willett might indeed have returned to duty and department headquarters with no other encumbrance than a mortgaged pay account, and it was not fair to Lilian to speak of her engagement as "announced" that Friday evening; but in her wondrous happiness she could find no fault with anything about it. It was all just perfect, just heavenly (where they neither ...
— Tonio, Son of the Sierras - A Story of the Apache War • Charles King

... closes its toes at every step it takes, as if it grasped something, and, of course, when it settles down on its roost, they grasp that tight and hold it fast till morning. But to birds that do not perch this mechanism is only an encumbrance, so many of them, like the plovers, abolish the hind toe entirely, and the prince of all two-legged runners, the ostrich, has got rid of one of the front toes ...
— Concerning Animals and Other Matters • E.H. Aitken, (AKA Edward Hamilton)

... affair had been reported to the Collector of Customs, and the master was informed that all things considered, the best thing had been done in ridding himself of an awkward encumbrance. In a few days an emissary of the Gibraltar syndicate had an interview with the captain, and then disappeared. It was said that he was strongly advised to disappear, lest he should ...
— Looking Seaward Again • Walter Runciman

... bounden duty and natural service of one of her suite, and would have cared little for his suffering for it personally, except so far as it concerned her own dignity, which she understood much better than she had done in Scotland, where she was only one of 'the lassies,' an encumbrance to ...
— Two Penniless Princesses • Charlotte M. Yonge

... middling rank of Monsieur de Barberie, who had consequently brought with him to the place of his exile, merely those tasteful usages which appear almost exclusively the property of the people from whom he had sprung, without the encumbrance and cost of the more pretending fashions of the period. These usages had become blended with the more domestic and comfortable habits of English, or what is nearly the same thing, of American life—an union which, when it is found, perhaps produces the most just ...
— The Water-Witch or, The Skimmer of the Seas • James Fenimore Cooper

... bears witness to the continuance of cruelty, which he censured in the strongest language of indignation. Certain settlers established a species of juvenile slavery: they followed up the mother, retarded by the encumbrance of her children, until she was compelled in her terror to leave them. Well might the Governor declare, that crime so enormous had fixed a lasting stigma on the British name. These provocations produced their ...
— The History of Tasmania , Volume II (of 2) • John West

... I had been dragging a heavy chain, with a huge block attached to it, cumbering my every motion. I had felt myself doomed to drag this chain and this block through life. All efforts, before, to separate myself from the hateful encumbrance, had only seemed to rivet me the more firmly to it. Baffled and discouraged at times, I had asked myself the question, May not this, after all, be God's work? May He not, for wise ends, have doomed me to this ...
— My Bondage and My Freedom • Frederick Douglass

... suppositions have therefore discredited hypothesis, by encumbering science with a crowd of vain imaginations; but this encumbrance would have been of small importance but for the obstinacy with which false theories have too often been maintained against the evidence of facts. If Ampere had found his experiment fail, and had still continued to maintain his statements, he would not have given proof of a ...
— The Heavenly Father - Lectures on Modern Atheism • Ernest Naville

... satiety, joy! Never will I toady to human being more, I now resolve it. Why, I can bless my friend or blast my foe, now that this delightful day has loaded me down with its delightful delightfulness! I've landed a legacy stuffed fit to burst, and not a single encumbrance attached! ...
— Amphitryo, Asinaria, Aulularia, Bacchides, Captivi • Plautus Titus Maccius

... the attack, The brazen weapon driving through his back. Thence through his breast its bloody passage tore; Flat falls he thundering on the marble floor, And his crush'd forehead marks the stone with gore. He left his javelin in the dead, for fear The long encumbrance of the weighty spear To the fierce foe advantage might afford, To rash between and use the shorten'd sword. With speedy ardour to his sire he flies, And, "Arm, great father! arm (in haste he cries). Lo, hence I run for other arms to wield, For missive javelins, ...
— The Odyssey of Homer • Homer, translated by Alexander Pope

... unnecessary encumbrance, we set forth, followed by the dogs. I had taken off my crinoline, because Eleanor said we might have to climb some walls, and I had borrowed a pair of her boots, because my own were so uncomfortable from being high-heeled and narrow-soled. They were too thin ...
— Six to Sixteen - A Story for Girls • Juliana Horatia Ewing

... became vicar of St. Ewold's, in East Barsetshire, and had not yet got himself settled there when he married the Widow Bold, a widow with belongings in land and funded money, and with but one small baby as an encumbrance. Nor had he even yet married her, had only engaged himself so to do, when they made him Dean of Barchester—all which may be read in the diocesan and county chronicles. And now that he was wealthy, the ...
— Framley Parsonage • Anthony Trollope

... the Shelley editions, 1818 and 1839, read clog, which is retained by Forman, Dowden, and Woodberry. Rossetti's happy conjecture, clod, seems to Forman 'a doubtful emendation, as Shelley may have used clog in its [figurative] sense of weight, encumbrance.'—Hardly, as here, in a poetical figure: that would be to use a metaphor within a metaphor. Shelley compares his heart to a concrete object: if clog is right, the word must be taken in one or other of its two recognized ...
— The Complete Poetical Works of Percy Bysshe Shelley Volume I • Percy Bysshe Shelley

... 1,000 tons gross, and one-quarter of her steam trawlers and other fishing boats. These ships are to be delivered within two months to the Separation Committee, together with documents of title evidencing the transfer of the ships free from encumbrance. ...
— World's War Events, Volume III • Various

... allowed some provisions to be carried into the city, though he thus protracted the siege. He hoped that this humanity would prove to his foes that he did not seek revenge. The Duke of Nemours, who conducted the defense, encouraged by this unmilitary humanity, that he might relieve himself from the encumbrance of useless mouths, drove several thousands out of the city. Henry, with extraordinary clemency, allowed three thousand to pass through the ranks of his army. He nobly said, "I can not bear to think of their sufferings. I had rather conquer my foes by kindness than by ...
— Henry IV, Makers of History • John S. C. Abbott

... days travellers did well to advance as far in a day as we now do in an hour. To make a country tour, required then the same precautions, as to supplies, as it now does to make the grand tour of Europe. To have carried coin would have been a great encumbrance, as well as risk from robbers. How accurately Bunyan knew the mode used in such cases to secure supplies, and with what beautiful simplicity it ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... precipitate, and frightened the bird away," remarked Mrs. Fraudhurst. "But," continued she, after a moment's pause, "perhaps it is as well she has taken this step. Her presence here is now no longer necessary. You have the property without the encumbrance." ...
— Vellenaux - A Novel • Edmund William Forrest

... carriage, and Corinne sat heavily upon the ground, her new acquaintance sprawling in her lap. Notwithstanding that she bore the brunt of the fall upon the gravel, Corinne uttered no cry; but, disengaging herself from her encumbrance, she rose to her feet. The other baby imitated her, and Corinne, taking her by the hand, led her to the bench where she herself ...
— The Rudder Grangers Abroad and Other Stories • Frank R. Stockton

... took this, giving in return his note secured by the Boom Company's stock. In 1879 and 1880 they made the two final payments on the timber; so that by the latter date they owned the land free of encumbrance save for the mortgage of $75,000. Since Newmark's plan had always contemplated the eventual foreclosure of this mortgage, it now became necessary further to encumber the property. Otherwise, since a property ...
— The Riverman • Stewart Edward White

... pleasanter for you," replied Verheyst, smiling, "but we get nothing for nothing; and if the old lady has chosen you to be her instrument of revenge, why you cannot do less than accept the encumbrance." ...
— Major Frank • A. L. G. Bosboom-Toussaint

... fellow-creature to perish. It was certainly considered incumbent on his son to support him, and he was fortunate in that son's being a very good man; but a few more such journeys to a man of seventy would not impose this encumbrance upon him much longer. Illumea, the mother of several grown-up children, lived also in the same hut with her other relations. She did not, however, interfere, as in Greenland, with the management of her son's domestic concerns, though his wife was half an idiot. She was always badly clothed, ...
— Three Voyages for the Discovery of a Northwest Passage from the • Sir William Edward Parry

... coming to that. It might be her interest if she cared two straws about me. But I happen to be an encumbrance in the way of another man. She was in love with him before she married me—she's in love with him now—an infernal vagabond ...
— The Woman in White • Wilkie Collins

... overtake Leo. We went on for another mile or more, when to my dismay we found his rifle on the ground. That he certainly would not have thrown away unless greatly overcome by fatigue. Still, perhaps, he might have had no powder, and found it a useless encumbrance. I, however, dreaded that, weak as he must have been before he would quit his knapsack and rifle, he might have fallen an easy victim to some beast of prey. Though we looked anxiously about, we could see nothing of him. Presently Mango, who had gone ahead of me, began running very fast. ...
— In the Wilds of Africa • W.H.G. Kingston

... of the astonishing scenery from the windows of the train, and you can see nothing of the huge expanses of moorland stretching away from the precipices on either side. So that we, who would learn something of this region, must make the journey on foot; for a bicycle would be an encumbrance when crossing the heather, and there are many places where a horse would be a source of danger. The sides of the valley are closely wooded for the first seven or eight miles north of Pickering, but the surrounding country gradually loses its cultivation, at first gorse ...
— Yorkshire Painted And Described • Gordon Home

... mind the great density of the water of the sea, and the surprising results of transplantation to that medium. To understand a little what these are, and how a man's weight, so far from being an encumbrance, is the very ground of his agility, was the chief lesson of my submarine experience. The knowledge came upon me by degrees. As I began to go forward with the hand of my estranged companion, a world of tumbled stones was visible, pillared with the weedy uprights of the staging: overhead, a flat roof ...
— Across The Plains • Robert Louis Stevenson

... are not accustomed to the Sol-fa notation it appears at first sight a useless encumbrance. Excellent arguments are produced for this view. Many musical people can scarcely remember when they could not sing at sight and write melodies from dictation. They picked up this knowledge instinctively, and cannot see why others should not do the ...
— Music As A Language - Lectures to Music Students • Ethel Home

... delectable rooms, which look out (when you stand a tiptoe) over the Thames and Surrey Hills, at the upper end of King's Bench walks in the Temple. There I shall have all the privacy of a house without the encumbrance, and shall be able to lock my friends out as often as I desire to hold free converse with my immortal mind; for my present lodgings resemble a minister's levee, I have so increased my acquaintance (as they call 'em), since I have resided in town. Like the country mouse, that had tasted ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Vol. 5 • Edited by E. V. Lucas

... thy wish, striving to foresee thy thoughts—all the while I was the partner of thy days, and at night my bosom was thy pillow, and I could not sleep from the bliss of thinking thee so near me: thy heart was then indeed away from me: thy thoughts estranged; I was to thee only an encumbrance—a burthen, from which thy sigh was to be free! Can I ever look back, then, to those hours we spent together? All that vast history of the past is but one record of bitterness and shame. And yet I cannot blame thee; it were something if I could: in proportion as you loved me not, you were kind ...
— Godolphin, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... spirit are in great concern about that vast number of poor people, who are aged, diseased, or maimed, and I have been desired to employ my thoughts what course may be taken, to ease the nation of so grievous an encumbrance. But I am not in the least pain upon that matter, because it is very well known, that they are every day dying, and rotting, by cold, and famine, and filth, and vermin, as fast as can be reasonably expected. ...
— The Prose Works of Jonathan Swift, D.D., Vol. VII - Historical and Political Tracts—Irish • Jonathan Swift

... fourth part of the income of the debtor; but any lender who had tacked the interest to the principal was deprived of the whole: thus, in less than four years all the debts were paid, and their property was given back to them free from all encumbrance. Now the common debt originated in the twenty thousand talents which Sulla had laid on Asia as a contribution, and twice this amount was repaid to the lenders, though they had indeed now brought the debt up to ...
— Plutarch's Lives, Volume II • Aubrey Stewart & George Long

... sandals in his hand, that he may run with greater ease, illustrates a custom, still common in Egypt, among the Arabs and peasants of the country, who find the power of the foot greater when freed from the encumbrance of ...
— Museum of Antiquity - A Description of Ancient Life • L. W. Yaggy

... individual scope, bringing with them, if they be torn away too quickly, some cumbrous fragments of their recent association. That he may avoid this, a sensitive writer is often put to his shifts, and extorts, if he be fortunate, a triumph from the accident of his encumbrance. By a slight stress laid on the difference of usage the unshapeliness may be done away with, and a new grace found where none was sought. Addison and Landor accuse Milton, with reason, of too great a fondness for the pun, ...
— Style • Walter Raleigh

... available in the early part of the war had not the necessary power and range. To build a vessel which should be able to carry seaplanes or aeroplanes for work with the fleet was not a simple matter. Such a vessel would be an encumbrance unless it could keep station with the Grand Fleet or with the Battle Cruiser Squadron, that is, unless it could steam up to thirty knots for a period of many hours together. Further, a stationary ship ...
— The War in the Air; Vol. 1 - The Part played in the Great War by the Royal Air Force • Walter Raleigh

... subaltern at a Gulf station, he had been attracted by the piquant foreign accent and dramatic gestures of a French Creole widow, and—believing them, in the first flush of his youthful passion more than an offset to the encumbrance of her two children who, with the memory of various marital infidelities were all her late husband had left her—had proposed, been accepted, and promptly married to her. Before he obtained his captaincy, she had partly lost her accent, and those dramatic gestures, ...
— A Sappho of Green Springs • Bret Harte

... life as a steward? No, if the work is to be in my hands, I ought to be in possession at once, so as to take my place in the county as I ought, and cut the City business. The place is a mere misfortune and encumbrance to her as she is, and she would be ten times happier at ...
— Hopes and Fears - scenes from the life of a spinster • Charlotte M. Yonge

... which he is represented in bed, surrounded by medical men, who treat him with very little respect. One insists on his fee, because Hill has never been acknowledged as one of themselves; and another, to his plea of want of money, responds, "Sell your sword, it is only an encumbrance."] ...
— Calamities and Quarrels of Authors • Isaac D'Israeli

... remonstrances, to make preparations for flight by providing themselves with every conceivable comfort for their exile. In vain did their friends assure them that they could purchase any thing they desired in any part of Europe; that such quantities of luggage would be only an encumbrance; that it was dangerous, under the eyes of their vigilant enemies, to be making such extensive preparations. Neither the king nor queen would heed such monitions. The queen persisted in her resolution ...
— Maria Antoinette - Makers of History • John S. C. (John Stevens Cabot) Abbott

... ludicrously, 'et en badinant'. Say that, if you were sure to lose, you might possibly play, but that as you may as well win, you dread 'l'embarras des richesses', ever since you have seen what an encumbrance they were to poor Harlequin, and that, therefore, you are determined never to venture the winning above two louis a-day; this sort of light trifling way of declining invitations to vice and folly, is more becoming your age, and at the same time more ...
— The PG Edition of Chesterfield's Letters to His Son • The Earl of Chesterfield

... "should there be messengers to Halton with news and credentials so explicit that the estate was left without let or encumbrance to the Lady Fitz-Eustace? A web of mystery is here which we will speedily unravel. Who gave thee this deed? and wherefore shouldest thou conceal it?" ...
— Traditions of Lancashire, Volume 1 (of 2) • John Roby

... is intense," said Frowenfeld. "It seems we are not to be granted suffrage yet; but the Creoles have a way of casting votes in their mind. For example, they have voted Honore Grandissime a traitor; they have voted me an encumbrance; I hear one of them casting that ...
— The Grandissimes • George Washington Cable

... trocha[obs3]; barricade &c. (defense) 717; wall, dead wall, sea wall, levee breakwater, groyne[obs3]; bulkhead, block, buffer; stopper &c. 263; boom, dam, weir, burrock[obs3]. drawback, objection; stumbling-block, stumbling-stone; lion in the path, snag; snags and sawyers. encumbrance, incumbrance[obs3]; clog, skid, shoe, spoke; drag, drag chain, drag weight; stay, stop; preventive, prophylactic; load, burden, fardel[obs3], onus, millstone round one's neck, impedimenta; dead weight; lumber, pack; nightmare, Ephialtes[obs3], incubus, old ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... Dan then. She would not wish to hold him by any other chain than his love for her. And if that chain had snapped—broken irrevocably—then the child born of what had once been love would only be an encumbrance in his eyes, an unwelcome tie, shackling him to a duty from which he ...
— The Lamp of Fate • Margaret Pedler

... his seeking, everybody knew that; and the knowledge that he did not need to be on friendly terms with the cantankerous old man was a distinct relief. He realised now that the ruling elder had been something of an encumbrance to him ever since he came to Glenoro. He represented everything unprogressive in the church, and he, the minister, had always been under the unpleasant obligation of conciliating him. He almost drew a breath of relief when he found ...
— Duncan Polite - The Watchman of Glenoro • Marian Keith

... Handsomebody, "I shall seek a shoemaker who has no such encumbrance. Is the woman feeble-minded ...
— Explorers of the Dawn • Mazo de la Roche

... worthy deeds. Fifteen minutes a day devoted to self-improvement, will be felt at the end of the year. Good thoughts and carefully gathered experience take up no room, and may be carried about as our companions everywhere, without cost or encumbrance. An economical use of time is the true mode of securing leisure: it enables us to get through business and carry it forward, instead of being driven by it. On the other hand, the miscalculation of time involves us in perpetual hurry, confusion, and difficulties; ...
— How to Get on in the World - A Ladder to Practical Success • Major A.R. Calhoon

... Alexander Teixeira de Mattos: chapter 12.—Translator's Note.) They are hunters of Spiders and diggers of burrows. The game, the food of the coming larva, is first caught and paralysed; the home is excavated afterwards. As the heavy prey would be a grave encumbrance to the Wasp in search of a convenient site, the Spider is placed high up, on a tuft of grass or brushwood, out of the reach of marauders, especially Ants, who might damage the precious morsel in the lawful owner's absence. After fixing her booty on the verdant pinnacle, the Pompilus casts ...
— The Mason-bees • J. Henri Fabre

... Kalmucks, there was not a chance for them, burdened and 'trashed' [Footnote: 'Trashed'—This is an expressive word used by Beaumont and Fletcher in their Bonduca, etc., to describe the case of a person retarded and embarrassed in flight, or in pursuit, by some encumbrance, whether thing or person, too valuable to be left behind.] as they were, to anticipate so agile a light cavalry as the Cossacks in ...
— Narrative And Miscellaneous Papers • Thomas De Quincey

... prepared," he said as he entered. "Rinaldo, do you see that the men come out one by one. As each comes out a weapon will be placed in his hands, and he will be then led to the starboard side of the hold, which is free from encumbrance, and will there stand until he receives orders to move further. Remember that not the slightest noise must be made, for if any stumbled and fell, and the noise were heard above, it might be thought that some of the stores had shifted from their places, ...
— The Lion of Saint Mark - A Story of Venice in the Fourteenth Century • G. A. Henty

... place to amuse yourself. If you have a duty, a mission, or an aspiration, you do not take it there with you, it would be so obviously out of place; if poverty is ahead of you, you forget it; if you have brains, you hasten to conceal them; they would be a serious encumbrance. ...
— A Mountain Woman and Others • (AKA Elia Wilkinson) Elia W. Peattie

... packing and conveying objects of value; now most of talk, and much of life, is exactly of that indispensable useful uselessness. They are silent for the same reason that they are frequently inactive, recognizing that words and actions are so often mere litter and encumbrance. One feels frozen occasionally by their unspoken criticism; one's small exuberances checked by lack of sympathy and indulgence; one would like, sometimes, to pick a quarrel with them, to offer a penny for their ...
— Hortus Vitae - Essays on the Gardening of Life • Violet Paget, AKA Vernon Lee

... too big an army is likely to be a mere encumbrance in war, it is perhaps even a still graver blunder to maintain one during that conflict of preparation which is at present the European substitute for actual hostilities. It consumes. It produces nothing. It not only eats and drinks and wears out its clothes and withdraws men from industry, ...
— An Englishman Looks at the World • H. G. Wells

... fen—that is, the place was his own, so long as he paid a small sum—not more than fifteen shillings a year, I think—to his superior. How long it was since the Priory had come to be looked upon as the mere encumbrance of a cottage garden, nobody thereabouts knew; and although by this time I presume archaeologists have ferreted out everything concerning it, nobody except its owner had then taken the trouble to make the least inquiry ...
— Gutta-Percha Willie • George MacDonald

... Mary, Anne Hamerton, M. Souverain, my husband, myself, and baby; for our guests kindly insisted upon my being one of the party, in spite of my small encumbrance, which I could not leave behind. I did my best to be excused, but they were unanimous in declaring that they would not ...
— Philip Gilbert Hamerton • Philip Gilbert Hamerton et al

... SITUATION—An able-bodied, middle-aged man, without encumbrance, who can have an undeniable character from his last situation, as headsman, hangman, and general executioner. He is accustomed to the use of thumbikins and the most approved and fashionable modes of torture; and officiated for many ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. 341, March, 1844, Vol. 55 • Various

... the excessive military expenditure from time to time. Whereas in reality, throughout these regions, every inhabitant is a soldier from the first day he is old enough to hurl a stone, till the last day he has strength to pull a trigger, after which he is probably murdered as an encumbrance ...
— The Story of the Malakand Field Force • Sir Winston S. Churchill

... (almost like a night-cap) with a wreath of foliage round the forehead; but they had only very small pieces of white cloth tied about their waists; probably, that they might be cool, and free from every encumbrance or weight. A person with a spear, dressed like the former, then came in, and in the same hasty manner; looking about eagerly, as if in search of somebody to throw it at. He then ran hastily to one side ...
— A General History and Collection of Voyages and Travels, Vol. 15 (of 18) • Robert Kerr

... 'worthy Mrs. Wetmore, not he; and she was welcome to keep the money as long as she pleased, provided the interest was punctually paid;' but I'd have none of his soft words, and laid down the Spaniards, and told him to count them. I 'lifted his encumbrance,' as they call'd it, as easily as if it had been a pillow of fresh feathers, and walked off with that bit of paper in my hands, with the names tore off it, and satisfaction give me, as my lawyer said. This law is droll business, Miles; if ...
— Miles Wallingford - Sequel to "Afloat and Ashore" • James Fenimore Cooper

... availeth for thy dog? To take Fleetfoot is to endanger thy life unnecessarily. Shouldst thou take him, even if thou didst win safely through, which is a very doubtful thing, thou wouldst find him but an unwelcome encumbrance to Lord De Aldithely. Leave the dog, therefore, with me, and I ...
— A Boy's Ride • Gulielma Zollinger

... else bought with hired money—and we may regard one third of that toil as the cost of their houses—but commonly they have not paid for them yet. It is true, the encumbrances sometimes outweigh the value of the farm, so that the farm itself becomes one great encumbrance, and still a man is found to inherit it, being well acquainted with it, as he says. On applying to the assessors, I am surprised to learn that they cannot at once name a dozen in the town who own their farms free and ...
— Walden, and On The Duty Of Civil Disobedience • Henry David Thoreau

... to me oddly in the way yonder. Were it not better to bestow it in the hold, where it will cease to be an encumbrance ...
— The Sea-Hawk • Raphael Sabatini

... Bacon, his farm has continued to improve in appearance and value ever since his daughter paid off the mortgage; and as he, once for all, banished liquor from his house, he is in no danger of having his little property burdened with a new encumbrance. His cheerfulness has returned, and he bears as of old, the reputation of being the best tempered, best hearted man ...
— The Lights and Shadows of Real Life • T.S. Arthur

... vicinity of Pebas dwell the inoffensive Yaguas. The shape of the head (but not their vacant expression) is well represented by Catlin's portrait of "Black Hawk," a Sauk chief. They are quite free from the encumbrance of dress, the men wearing a girdle of fibrous bark around the loins, with bunches looking like a mop hanging down in front and rear, and similar bunches hung around the neck and arms. The women tie a strip of brown cotton cloth about the hips. They paint the ...
— The Andes and the Amazon - Across the Continent of South America • James Orton

... of which the person himself may be considered as almost sole proprietor and patentee is an estate for life, free from all encumbrance of wit, thought, or study, you live upon it as a settled income; and others might as well think to eject you out of a capital freehold house and estate as think to drive you out of it into the wide world of common sense and argument. Every man's house is his castle; and every man's common-place ...
— Table-Talk - Essays on Men and Manners • William Hazlitt

... horseback. At fourteen the page became an esquire, and began a course of severer and more laborious exercises. To vault on a horse in heavy armor; to run, to scale walls, and spring over ditches, under the same encumbrance; to wrestle, to wield the battle-axe for a length of time, without raising the visor or taking breath; to perform with grace all the evolutions of horsemanship,—were necessary preliminaries to the reception of knighthood, which ...
— Bulfinch's Mythology • Thomas Bulfinch

... experience small trouble eluding the Spaniards, or even cutting your way through them, were I not with you. Yet this is not beyond remedy. I had sincerely hoped to prove of service when I usurped the slave's place in the boat; instead, I am an encumbrance, a weakling whom you must protect at the risk of your own lives. Fortunately it is not yet too late to leave you free; it cannot be many miles back to New Orleans, and the current would bear me swiftly downward. I have loyal friends in ...
— Prisoners of Chance - The Story of What Befell Geoffrey Benteen, Borderman, - through His Love for a Lady of France • Randall Parrish

... idea of his success with that lady, whose quick apprehension of what might amuse her had given Strether a free hand. What had she meant if not to ask whether she couldn't help him with his splendid encumbrance, and mightn't the sacred rage at any rate be kept a little in abeyance by thus creating for his comrade's mind even in a world of irrelevance the possibility of a relation? What was it but a relation ...
— The Ambassadors • Henry James

... conscience. What pressure here? Miss Batch was a superior girl; she would grace any station in life. He had always been rather in awe of her. It was a fine thing to be suddenly loved by her, to be in a position to over-rule her every whim. Plighting his troth, he had feared she would be an encumbrance, only to find she was a lever. But—was he deeply in love with her? How was it that he could not at this moment recall her features, or the tone of her voice, while of deplorable Miss Dobson, every lineament, every accent, so vividly haunted ...
— Zuleika Dobson - or, An Oxford Love Story • Max Beerbohm

... and desolate man;—come here, I pray you—be as eyes to me?" When said, Even to her whose pitying voice is sweet To my dark ruined heart, as must be hands That clasp a lifelong captive's through the grate, And who will ever lend her delicate aid To guide me, dark encumbrance that I am!— When have I said to her, "Comforting voice, Belonging to a face unknown, I pray Be ...
— Poems by Jean Ingelow, In Two Volumes, Volume I. • Jean Ingelow

... without a dot? Thank you, mademoiselle. I am an expense to myself. My wife must not be an additional encumbrance." ...
— As Seen By Me • Lilian Bell

... Miss Crawford had been ready to contract a marriage with a half-demented, deformed creature for the sake of his L100,000 she must have been equally ready to murder and rob an old lady for the sake of L50,000 worth of jewellery, without the encumbrance ...
— The Old Man in the Corner • Baroness Orczy

... From the fact that a blossom has a lip in the centre of the lower half of its corolla, that an insect must use as its landing place, comes the necessity for the pistil to occupy a central position. Naturally, a fifth stamen would be only in its way, an encumbrance to be banished in time. In the figwort, for example, we have seen the fifth stamen reduced, from long sterility, to a mere scale on the roof of the corolla tube; in other lipped flowers, the useless organ has disappeared; but in the beard-tongue, it goes through a series of curious ...
— Wild Flowers Worth Knowing • Neltje Blanchan et al

... by them all, and soon eluded mortal sight and reach. But, glad as was the schemer, his delight and sense of freedom were much inferior to those of his misguided and unlucky partner. Michael breathed as a man relieved from nightmare. The encumbrance which had for years prevented him from rising, that had so lately threatened his existence, was gone, could no longer hang upon him, haunt and oppress him. What a deliverance!—Yet, what a price had he paid for it! True, but was not the money already sacrificed? ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine, No. CCCXXXIX. January, 1844. Vol. LV. • Various

... seems no end. Some are good, some bad, and many just an encumbrance upon the book-shelves, neither of much use nor particularly harmful. Some books are to be read for cheer and amusement; some for reproof and correction; others to be studied ...
— Mother's Remedies - Over One Thousand Tried and Tested Remedies from Mothers - of the United States and Canada • T. J. Ritter

... perhaps even to break out. Not only do the surrounding hills keep the garrison in, but they also form a formidable barrier to the advance of a relieving force. Thus it is that the ten thousand troops in Ladysmith are at this moment actually an encumbrance. To extricate them—I write advisedly, to endeavour to extricate them—brigades and divisions must be diverted from all the other easy lines of advance, and Sir Redvers Buller, who had always deprecated any attempt to hold ...
— London to Ladysmith via Pretoria • Winston Spencer Churchill

... arms high above his head, as a man might who yawns, or a man might who has all at once recognised that he is rid of a great encumbrance. ...
— The Hoyden • Mrs. Hungerford



Words linked to "Encumbrance" :   obstruction, onus, pill, hindrance, worry, headache, concern, hitch, clog, impediment, dead weight, imposition, vexation, fardel



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