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Immobility   Listen
noun
Immobility  n.  The condition or quality of being immobile; fixedness in place or state.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Immobility" Quotes from Famous Books



... work. It is very different. You do not understand the psychic immobility of labour. Habits grow stronger as the mentality is simplified. I have heard that there are animals in the zoological garden that still perform useless operations that their remote ancestors required in ...
— City of Endless Night • Milo Hastings

... that he coughed now without being able to spit; no longer rising from his chair, he who had so often risen for humanity; but drinking dry, eating heartily, saying nothing, but having all the appearance of a living Canon of Notre Dame. Seeing the immobility of the aforesaid canon; seeing the stories of his evil life which for some time had circulated among the common people, always ignorant; seeing his dumb seclusion, his flourishing health, his young old age, and other things too numerous to mention—there were certain people who to do ...
— Droll Stories, Volume 1 • Honore de Balzac

... got the joke on me, boys," he ventured with a nervous little laugh. And then his voice died away against the stony immobility of the man opposite as laughter sinks to nothing against the horror of a great darkness. Bennington began to feel impressed in earnest. Across his mind crept doubts as to the outcome. He almost screamed aloud as some one stole up behind and dropped over his throat the soft cold ...
— The Claim Jumpers • Stewart Edward White

... of a striking and far-reaching political move. It was the kind of thing that England's Prime Minister, with his extraordinary frankness, with his equally extraordinary secretiveness, insight and immobility, delighted in; and Slavonia and its ambassador knew, as an American high in place had colloquially said, "that they were up against a proposition which would ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... was not too much to see. What the attacking creature had used to blur the restructure wasn't clear, except that it wasn't a standard scrambler. Amplified to the limits of clarity and stepped down in time to the limit of immobility, all that emerged was a shifting haze of energy, which very faintly hinted at a dwarfish human shape in outline. A rather unusually small and heavy catassin, the Security chief pointed out, would present such an outline. That something quite material was finally undergoing devastating ...
— Legacy • James H Schmitz

... hats of the women and the waiters' white aprons standing out in bold relief against the background of dark clothing, and in the broad aisle in the centre, where the swarm of promenaders en vignette forms a striking contrast to the immobility of the statues, the unconscious palpitation with which their chalky whiteness and their glorified attitudes ...
— The Nabob, Vol. 2 (of 2) • Alphonse Daudet

... on till it was too dark to see the sights of the rifles. We, the spectators, were assigned posts to see the spectacle as at the theatre, and went to them just after sundown. The straggling fire of the early twilight stopped, and there was an unbroken silence and immobility which lasted perhaps twenty minutes, and until everything had become vague and indefinable in the deepening twilight, when we heard the signal, given by a trumpet call, and instantly the steep sides of the two ridges were crawling with gray shadows, and a terrific fire burst ...
— The Autobiography of a Journalist, Volume II • William James Stillman

... refreshing, with his direct purposes and solid immobility. You could be of use to Leslie, because he had a single eye; he knew what he wanted, and requested you to obtain it for him. That was simple; he didn't make your task impossible by suddenly deciding that after all he didn't really want what you were getting for ...
— The Lee Shore • Rose Macaulay

... whose shoulder was hung a dozen or more ptarmigan, the grouse of the North. Spot paused instantly, and seemed petrified in an attitude which his distant grandsires, old in field work, might have envied for its perfect immobility. The fact that the birds were dead and on a string meant nothing to his untutored mind. They were birds, and as such were worthy of ...
— Baldy of Nome • Esther Birdsall Darling

... feet and cold-bloodedly turned the ray on Winters, blasting him into immobility. He turned grimly toward the panel and raced to the slidestairs. If Vidac had a warrant for his arrest, signed by Hardy, then Vidac knew where Hardy was. If he could follow the lieutenant governor, he might possibly learn just where ...
— The Space Pioneers • Carey Rockwell

... dying embers in the grate. Her thoughtful mood had flown. Nothing of it remained on her face, a little saddened, nor in her languid body, more desirable than ever in the quiescence of her mind. She kept for a while a profound immobility, which added to her personal attraction the charm of things ...
— The Red Lily, Complete • Anatole France

... rises, Eileen is discovered standing in the middle of the road, front centre. Her face shows white and clear in the bright moonlight as she stares with anxious expectancy up the road to the left. Her body is fixed in an attitude of rigid immobility as if she were afraid the slightest movement would break the spell of silence and awaken the unknown. She has shrunk instinctively as far away as she can from the mysterious darkness which rises at the roadsides like an imprisoning wall. A sound of hurried footfalls, ...
— The Straw • Eugene O'Neill

... the individual form, losing thereby nothing of its central impassivity, its depth and repose. To all but the highest culture, the reserved faces of the gods will ever have something of insipidity. Again, in the best Greek sculpture, the archaic immobility has been thawed, its forms are in motion; but it is a motion ever kept in reserve, which is very seldom committed to any definite action. Endless as are the attitudes of Greek sculpture, exquisite as is the invention of the Greeks in this direction, the actions or situations ...
— The Renaissance - Studies in Art and Poetry • Walter Pater

... the open sea ourselves, in cobles; sometimes the big dog with us—"Joomboa," as the fishermen called him; and they marvelled at his good manners and stately immobility in a boat. ...
— The Martian • George Du Maurier

... reckless humor and gaiety. It was the face of a man who, had he curbed his desires and walked with circumspection, would have known enduring greatness as a captain, as an explorer, as a theologian. Not a contour of the face hut expressed force, courage, daring, immobility of purpose. ...
— The Grey Cloak • Harold MacGrath

... their heaven to his fleshly vault: When, like a city under ocean, To human things he grows a desolation, And is made a habitation For the fluctuous universe To lave with unimpeded motion. He scarcely frets the atmosphere With breathing, and his body shares The immobility of rocks; His heart's a drop-well of tranquillity; His mind more still is than the limbs of fear, And yet its unperturbed velocity The spirit of the simoom mocks. He round the solemn centre of his soul Wheels like a dervish, while his being is Streamed with the set of the world's harmonies, In the ...
— New Poems • Francis Thompson

... orders emanated on the heels of the thought more quickly than one word could have been uttered. The six men who operated the disintegrator rays were stung out of their startled immobility, and the soft hum of the ...
— Astounding Stories of Super-Science September 1930 • Various

... right to liberty and equality (liberty for all), but they had encountered social anarchy by the way. The philosophy of the epoch had asserted the sovereignty of the human Ego, and had ended in the mere adoration of fact, in Hegelian immobility. The Economy of the epoch imagined it had organized free competition, while it had but organized the oppression of the weak by the strong; of labor by capital; of poverty by wealth. The Poetry of the epoch had represented individuality ...
— Literary and Philosophical Essays • Various

... chloroform, no description of the method is needed here, as it will be found fully detailed in most good works on general surgery. Where great immobility is needed, it is one of the most valuable means of restraint we have. Apart from that, its use in any serious operation is always to be advocated, if only on the score of humane consideration for the dumb animal helpless ...
— Diseases of the Horse's Foot • Harry Caulton Reeks

... for a moment or two with eyes of glowering resentment; but in the end he put forth a hand not wholly steady and took the sheet held out to him. Monck stood beside him in utter immobility, gazing out over the valley with a changeless vigilance that had about ...
— The Lamp in the Desert • Ethel M. Dell

... at last from his Indian-like immobility. He looked up under the brim of his felt hat at the skyline of the mountain, shimmering iridescent above us. "He says maybe 'lectricity would help her some. I'm goin' to git her the batteries and things soon's I git the ...
— Hillsboro People • Dorothy Canfield

... Desire, nor Hate, we are said to Contemne: CONTEMPT being nothing els but an immobility, or contumacy of the Heart, in resisting the action of certain things; and proceeding from that the Heart is already moved otherwise, by either more potent objects; or from want of experience ...
— Leviathan • Thomas Hobbes

... choice of several possible methods of procedure. The simplest, though not the most effective method, is to write out the argument in full, and to memorize it word for word. The weakness of such a course lies in the immobility of its attack and defense. The first speaker for the affirmative may decide beforehand exactly what he will say and the order in which he will say it, but all those who are to follow should adapt their arguments, to some extent at least, ...
— Practical Argumentation • George K. Pattee

... thick grey-blue cotton that fell about her limbs, and there was audacity in the poverty of her beaten silver anklets and armlets. These shone and twinkled with her movements; but her softly splendid eyes and reddened lips had the immobility of the bazaar. People looked at their playbills to see whether it was really Hilda Howe or some nautch-queen borrowed from a native theatre. By the time she sank before Pilate and placed his foot upon her ...
— Hilda - A Story of Calcutta • Sara Jeannette Duncan

... all that thundering host—which but a second before had seemed inevitably bound to trample down the Legion under a hurricane of white-lathered horses and frenzied, long-robed men—came to a dead halt of silence and immobility. ...
— The Flying Legion • George Allan England

... there she could scarcely get to the fire; Paul took up the front. His immobility and unconsciousness irritated Jenny beyond ...
— The Missing Bride • Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth

... if, aware of her, he only kept consciously quiet. Did his eyes truly fix her between lids partly open, and was she to take this—his forebearance from any question—only as a sign again that everything was left to her? She at all events, for a minute, watched his immobility—then, as if once more renewing her total submission, returned, without a sound, to her ...
— The Golden Bowl • Henry James

... line came the shrill trilling of a whistle. At once the foreman nearest Vanamee repeated it, at the same time turning down the line, and waving one arm. The signal was repeated, whistle answering whistle, till the sounds lost themselves in the distance. At once the line of ploughs lost its immobility, moving forward, getting slowly under way, the horses straining in the traces. A prolonged movement rippled from team to team, disengaging in its passage a multitude of sounds—-the click of buckles, the creak of straining ...
— The Octopus • Frank Norris

... of apprehension, however, in Crozier's eyes as they met those of Sibley. He liked Sibley. At this point it is not necessary to say why. The reason will appear in due time. Sibley's face had always something of that immobility and gravity which Crozier's face had part of the time-paler, less intelligent, with dark lines and secret shadows absent from Crozier's face; but still with some of the El Greco characteristics which marked so powerfully that of the man who passed ...
— The Judgment House • Gilbert Parker

... to immobility, but his little eyes remained fastened on the camera obscura above. All the cunning, patience, and murderous immobility of the rat ...
— The Flaming Jewel • Robert Chambers

... shortest—as also the immobility of the men composing the different groups—only for a half-score seconds. Then there is noise enough, with plenty of gesticulation. A roar arises that fills the room; while men rush about wildly, madly, as if in the courtyard of a lunatic asylum. Some show anger—those who are losers ...
— The Flag of Distress - A Story of the South Sea • Mayne Reid

... The upper surfaces of these clouds are not uniformly level, like the under sides seen from the earth, but they are of a conical or pyramidal shape. These imposing masses seem to precipitate themselves upon the earth, as if to engulf it, but this optical illusion was due to the apparent immobility of the balloon, which at the moment was rising at the rate of about twenty feet ...
— Wonderful Balloon Ascents - or, the Conquest of the Skies • Fulgence Marion

... weariedly fixed on the one corner of the room, in the direction of which she was obliged to turn her head. The monotonous attitude contributed to plunge her mind into that dull despair which produces immobility—Michael Vanbrugh had never had so steady ...
— Olive - A Novel • Dinah Maria Craik, (AKA Dinah Maria Mulock)

... last breath in the pursuit of his own elusive tail. But there are few of us who would care to see the monumental calm of our fireside sphinx degenerate into senile sportiveness. Better far the measured slowness of her pace, the superb immobility of her repose. To watch an ordinary cat move imperceptibly and with a rhythmic waving of her tail through a doorway (while we are patiently holding open the door), is like looking at a procession. With just such deliberate dignity, in just such solemn ...
— Americans and Others • Agnes Repplier

... The calm immobility of the body so lately racked with pain, or restless in feverish tossings, is but a symbol of the deeper stillness of truer repose which remaineth for the people of God and laps the blessed spirits who 'sleep in Jesus.' He meant to suggest the idea of separation from this material world. He ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... rob them of their miserable treasure. He had met it and frustrated it in almost as brutal a fashion: the gold was already tarnished with blood. To his surprise, yet relief, he found his partners unconscious of the outrage, still sleeping with the physical immobility of over-excited and tired men. Should he awaken them? No! He should have to awaken also their suspicions and desire for revenge. There was no danger of a further attack; there was no fear that the culprit would disclose himself, and to-morrow they would ...
— The Three Partners • Bret Harte

... presence a man always feels that he must appear on parade—one of those alert, highly intelligent young women so extremely apt to reduce an ordinarily intelligent young man to a state of gibbering idiocy or stupid immobility. ...
— The Valley of the Giants • Peter B. Kyne

... the powerful methods it used to split this ice, the Nautilus was reduced to immobility. Ordinarily, when someone can't go any farther, he still has the option of returning in his tracks. But here it was just as impossible to turn back as to go forward, because every passageway had closed behind us, and if our submersible remained even slightly stationary, it would ...
— 20000 Leagues Under the Seas • Jules Verne

... of an old medical book which I have in my possession, are the following, among other advertisements:—"The new Plannet no Plannet, or the Earth no Wandring Star. Here, out of the principles of divinity, philosophy, &c. the earth's immobility is asserted, and Copernicus, his opinion, as erroneous, &c. fully refuted, by ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 13, No. 354, Saturday, January 31, 1829. • Various

... compound and the little victim is then buried in the warm sand up to his neck, being exposed to the hot, scorching rays of the sun; the sand and soil is tightly packed about his little body so as to prevent any possibility of any movement on the part of the child, perfect immobility being considered by the monks as the main element required to promote a successful result. It is estimated that 35,000 little Africans are annually sacrificed to produce the Soudanese average quota of its ...
— History of Circumcision from the Earliest Times to the Present - Moral and Physical Reasons for its Performance • Peter Charles Remondino

... inspiri. Imitate imiti. Imitation imito. Immaculate senmakula. Immaterial negrava. Immature nematura. Immediate tuja. Immediately tuj. Immense vasta. Immense (size) grandega. Immerge trempi. Immerse subakvigi. Immigrate enmigri. Immigrant enmigranto. Imminent minaca. Immobility senmoveco. Immoderate malmodera. Immodest nemodesta. Immolate oferbucxi. Immoral malbonmora. Immorality malbonmoreco. Immortal senmorta. Immortality senmorteco. Immovable senmova, nemovebla. Immutable ...
— English-Esperanto Dictionary • John Charles O'Connor and Charles Frederic Hayes

... the Jews rose and bowed low. Then they settled back into their former immobility. Some stared at us vacantly; others lowered their eyelids and rubbed their hands together softly, with a terrible subservience. If we brushed close to one, he cringed like a dog who fears a kick. Yellow, parchment-like faces, all with the high-bridged, ...
— Trapped in 'Black Russia' - Letters June-November 1915 • Ruth Pierce

... down, and we remained there hand-in-hand and silent, like two frightened children placed at the centre of the earth. There was not a sound, not a gleam. Sera-phina bore the crushing strain of this perfect and black stillness in an almost heroic immobility; but, as to me, it seemed to lie upon my limbs, to embarrass my breathing like a numbness full of dread; and to shake that feeling off I jumped up repeatedly to look at that luminous bead, that point of light no bigger than a pearl in the infinity of darkness. And once, just as I was looking, ...
— Romance • Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer

... for prolonged stability, with Florence; Sparta, firmly based upon an ancient constitution, indifferent to culture, and solid at the cost of some rigidity, with Venice. As in Greece the philosophers of Athens, especially Plato and Aristotle, wondered at the immobility of Sparta and idealized her institutions; so did the theorists of Florence, Savonarola, Giannotti, Guicciardini, look with envy at the state machinery which secured repose and liberty for Venice. The ...
— Renaissance in Italy, Volume 1 (of 7) • John Addington Symonds

... the hierarchy of spirits, there is need of the planet no less than of its sun. The station and gravity of the one determines the orbit of the other, and the antagonism that keeps them apart also knits them together. There is no motion of MacCarthy's but I vibrate to it; and about my immobility he revolves. But both of us, as I am inclined to think, are included in a larger system and move together on a remoter centre. And the very law of our contention, as perhaps one day we may come to see, is that of a love that ...
— A Modern Symposium • G. Lowes Dickinson

... of the battery on the score of waste of zinc by local action, because of the electro positive metal being exposed to the chromic liquid; but if the battery be out of action and the circulation stopped, the zinc amalgam is protected by the immobility of the liquid and the formation of a dense layer of sulphate of zinc on its surface. When in action, that effect is neutralized from the fact that carbon in chromic acid is more highly electro-negative than the chromate of mercury formed upon the zinc ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 363, December 16, 1882 • Various

... printed in black on a white ground; the eye is thus in presence of the most absolute contrast which can be imagined. The third peculiarity lies in the arrangement of the characters in horizontal lines, over which we run our eyes. If we maintain during reading a perfect immobility of the book and the head, the printed lines are applied successively to the same parts of the retina, while the interspaces, more bright, also affect certain regions of the retina, always the same. There must result from ...
— Scientific American, Volume 40, No. 13, March 29, 1879 • Various

... looked towards the height crowned by the Palazzo d'Oro, where from the upper windows twinkled a few lights showing the position of the room where the "master of the world" lay stretched in brainless immobility, waited upon by medical nurses ever on the watch, and a wife of whom he knew nothing, guarding him with the fixed devotion of a faithful dog rather than of a human being. Going onwards in a kind of abstract reverie, ...
— The Secret Power • Marie Corelli

... got to go somewhere," she insisted, placing her two hands upon his shoulders. She attempted to give him a little shake, with the result that she shook only herself. His physical immobility was so suggestive of his mental attitude that she desisted, with sudden meekness, and the point was apparently settled as he wished. He possessed himself of her hand, and began to stroke the inside of her arm, as if he had discovered a new charm ...
— The Mayor of Warwick • Herbert M. Hopkins

... upon the back of the King's chair, in an attitude familiar, but not disrespectful. The harsh and somewhat coarse features of the monarch, which abstractedly seemed calculated to display strong passions, were in their habitual state of cold immobility; and Wilton, though he knew his person well, and had seen him often, could not derive from the King's face the slightest intimation of what was passing in his mind. There was no trace of anger, it is true; the brow was sufficiently ...
— The King's Highway • G. P. R. James

... exhibit in her person and face, more opposite extremes of beauty. If the one was strikingly characteristic of warmth, the other was no less indicative of coldness. Fair, even to paleness, were her cheek and forehead, which wore an appearance of almost marble immobility, save when, in moments of oft recurring abstraction, a slight but marked contraction of the brow betrayed the existence of a feeling, indefinable indeed by the observer, but certainly unallied to softness. Still was she beautiful—coldly, classically, beautiful—eminently calculated ...
— The Canadian Brothers - or The Prophecy Fulfilled • John Richardson

... His immobility struck me as dignified suddenly, his imperturbable quality as dangerous. "There's plenty of time to think about that," I concluded weakly with a gesture that tried to wave him away. But before he departed he took time to mention regretfully that he had not yet had the pleasure of seeing ...
— 'Twixt Land & Sea • Joseph Conrad

... energy and of magnetic dominance in such a countenance; but parallel with this and simultaneously with this, one will observe an expression of unutterable sadness, a sadness which is inert and death-like, a sadness which has the soulless rigidity and the frozen immobility of a corpse. We are thus justified, by an impression of direct experience, in our contention that the peculiar pleasure which many artists derive from the contemplation of suffering and from the contemplation of what is atrocious, obscene, monstrous and revolting, ...
— The Complex Vision • John Cowper Powys

... they could see a group of their late adversaries on the roof, standing in strained attitudes. Their immobility was explained a moment later by an electric blue spark from something in ...
— The Martian Cabal • Roman Frederick Starzl

... within itself, secure from military attack and economically self-supporting, were the essential needs which determined the structure of the great fiefs. The upper classes rarely went far afield, while the "rural population lived in a sort of chrysalis state, in immobility and isolation within ...
— Beginnings of the American People • Carl Lotus Becker

... cause of the evil lay in the accumulation and immobility of capital of all sorts,—an immobility which prevented labor, enslaved and subalternized by haughty idleness, from ever acquiring it. The necessity was felt of dividing and mobilizing wealth, of rendering ...
— What is Property? - An Inquiry into the Principle of Right and of Government • P. J. Proudhon

... when touched with the probe, and shrinking on the application of a 5 per cent. solution of cocain. Its soft consistence and the fact that it becomes smaller when painted with cocain differentiate it from true hypertrophy of the mucous membrane. Its situation and immobility, its pink colour, and the shrinkage under cocain, distinguish it from the mucous polypus of the nose. The turgescence may involve the whole extent of the mucosa of the inferior turbinated bodies, including their posterior ends. After anaesthetising with cocain, the electric cautery, ...
— Manual of Surgery Volume Second: Extremities—Head—Neck. Sixth Edition. • Alexander Miles

... hovering over the turf and investigating it far and wide, in its search for a grey grub, contrive to discern the precise point in the depth of the subsoil where the larva is slumbering in immobility? "Neither touch nor sight can come into play, for the grub is sealed up in its burrow at a depth of several inches; nor the scent, since it is absolutely inodorous; nor the hearing, since its immobility is absolute ...
— Fabre, Poet of Science • Dr. G.V. (C.V.) Legros

... cast-off clothes of the white man; frowzy hair hanging to their shoulders and bound round at the brows by soiled thin turbans. But they stood erect and there was a dignity in the way they held their heads back, a dignity in their immobility of feature and in their slow, grave speech. It was the dignity of men who knew that they were leaders of their people; who felt themselves on entire equality with the leader of the white man's warriors; who felt the gravity of this occasion ...
— When the West Was Young • Frederick R. Bechdolt

... say, "on the limbs of a tall negro of any age between sixteen and sixty, and then let him stand close to the scaffold-like platform of the depot shanty and let him loaf. His attitude is one of complete and apathetic immobility. He does not grin. He may be chewing, but he does not smoke. He does not beg; at least in so far as I observed him he stood in no posture and assumed no gestures belonging to the mendicant. He looms at you with a dull, stony, preoccupied gaze, as though his thoughts ...
— My Native Land • James Cox

... naturally a silent man, or because the presence of the countess struck him dumb, or because he had no message to deliver that morning, retired without speaking. Bertha looked anxiously at her aunt; the immobility of her ...
— Fairy Fingers - A Novel • Anna Cora Mowatt Ritchie

... beginning to speak almost as she entered, broke off abruptly as she caught sight of Ann's stricken face. She hurried to her side. The girl's mute immobility ...
— The Vision of Desire • Margaret Pedler

... behold! in two of the tops there sat a native, motionless as an idol and watching us, you would have said, without a wink. The next moment the tree closed, and the glimpse was gone. This discovery of human presences latent overhead in a place where we had supposed ourselves alone, the immobility of our tree-top spies, and the thought that perhaps at all hours we were similarly supervised, struck us with a chill. Talk languished on the beach. As for the cook (whose conscience was not clear), he never afterwards set foot on shore, and twice, when the Casco appeared to be driving ...
— The Works of Robert Louis Stevenson - Swanston Edition Vol. 18 (of 25) • Robert Louis Stevenson

... had been to the Hippodrome Manager. Sobrenski's blood had never stirred for any woman, however charming, and Arithelli's type of looks was repulsive to him. He loathed her thinness and pallor, her silence and immobility of expression. He vowed inwardly that she should look less indifferent before he ...
— The Hippodrome • Rachel Hayward

... pauses and I turn my eye, I know that it is not moving.'' The last argument is not correct. If the bird is sitting on a branch I know, in spite of all my occipital movement, that it is quiet, but only because I perceive and observe the bird's immobility. If, however, I lie on my back like Stricker and see above me a bird of the class that, so to speak, swim motionless in the air for minutes at a time, and if then I turn my head, I can not tell when the bird begins ...
— Robin Hood • J. Walker McSpadden

... down upon the red sofa, and buried her head in the rags which covered the bosom of her mother, and wept there. The old woman received her daughter without issuing from her state of immobility, or displaying any emotion. The mother possessed in the highest degree that gravity of savage races, the impassiveness of a statue upon which all remarks are lost. Did she or did she not love her daughter? Beneath that mask every human emotion might brood—good ...
— The Girl with the Golden Eyes • Honore de Balzac

... whole evening scene, red with the late light, was set in the mould of immobility. The two fighting men at sound of that cry following hard upon the shot stopped rigidly, still clasped in the grip of rage, the women staring wide-eyed from the wall, the Bois-Brules, the leaning eager faces of the wild ...
— The Maid of the Whispering Hills • Vingie E. Roe

... devotee who has lived for years crouched in a miserable little outhouse, subsisting on the offerings of the charitable, and degraded almost beyond the pale of humanity by his unbroken silence, his blank immobility, and his neglect of all the decencies of life. And this is an American resident, if not an American citizen! If the reader is as lucky as the writer, he may wind up the day with a smart shock of earthquake; and if he is equally sleepy and unintelligent (which Heaven forefend!), ...
— The Land of Contrasts - A Briton's View of His American Kin • James Fullarton Muirhead

... hall, and listened. There hovered before him in the darkness the face of Philippina. She showed the same scornful immobility that she showed when her father struck her in the face. He stepped to the railing, and sat down on the top step; a fit at once of weakness and aimless defiance came over him. He buried his face in his hands; he could still hear Theresa ...
— The Goose Man • Jacob Wassermann

... his stomach and slightly bowing his head, he gazed at me with a level upturned glance that, without betraying expression, carried by its very immobility a hint of deep emotion. 'It is as I told you,' he said at last. 'Now, ...
— The Best Short Stories of 1921 and the Yearbook of the American Short Story • Various

... glacier had not disputed their passage; it maintained the silence and the immobility of marble; nothing but the snarl of the surging flood re-echoed from its face. But with the suddenness of a rifle-shot there came a detonation, louder, sharper than any blast of powder. The Norwegian cursed; the helmsman dropped his eyes ...
— The Iron Trail • Rex Beach

... Don Custodio's, called attention to the liberal education and wide travels of the priest. Padre Salvi's swoon was the excessive sorrow that took possession of the virtuous Franciscan to see the little fruit borne among the Indians by his pious sermons, while the immobility and fright of the other guests, among them the Countess, who "sustained" Padre Salvi (she grabbed him), were the serenity and sang-froid of heroes, inured to danger in the performance of their duties, beside whom the Roman senators surprised by the Gallic ...
— The Reign of Greed - Complete English Version of 'El Filibusterismo' • Jose Rizal

... shot suddenly out. He was leaning a little from his chair. His expression of gentle immobility had passed away. His ...
— The Vanished Messenger • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... to cuff him. He soon learned an almost uncanny cunning in the art of effacing himself, when she was imminent, to be as still as death and to move with the silence of a wraith. Not infrequently his huddled immobility in a shadowy corner escaped her notice as she passed. But it always exasperated her beyond measure to look up, when she fancied herself alone, and become aware of the wide-eyed, terrified stare ...
— The Lone Wolf - A Melodrama • Louis Joseph Vance

... is with reference to their immobility that the earth and other inanimate things—the air, the sky, the waters, the mountains—may be spoken of as thinking, 'the earth thinks (dhyayati) as it were,' and so on. Movelessness hence is characteristic of the intensely meditating person also, and such movelessness ...
— The Vedanta-Sutras with the Commentary by Ramanuja - Sacred Books of the East, Volume 48 • Trans. George Thibaut

... clear blue eyes looked at me, sometimes with the pity of an angel, sometimes with the innocent perplexity of a child. But the change meant more than this. There was a coldness in her hand, there was an unnatural immobility in her face, there was in all her movements the mute expression of constant fear and clinging self-reproach. The sensations that I could trace to herself and to me, the unacknowledged sensations that we were ...
— The Woman in White • Wilkie Collins

... in much closer relation to sensation and movement, than do the operations of thought. The latter, indeed, necessitate immobility, and, if sufficiently intense, diminish the power of sensation; they seem to indicate a concentration of nervous action upon organs unconnected with motility or sensibility. On the contrary, movements of some kind are the first result of emotions, of which each is expressed by a characteristic gesture, ...
— The Education of American Girls • Anna Callender Brackett

... First-Level mentality that Verkan Vall wasted no moments on self-reproach or panic. While he was still rolling under his jeep, his mind had been busy with plans to retrieve the situation. Something touched the heel of one boot, and he froze his leg into immobility, at the same time trying to get the big Smith & Wesson free. The shoulder-holster, he found, was badly torn, though made of the heaviest skirting-leather, and the spring which retained the weapon in place had been wrenched and bent until he needed ...
— Police Operation • H. Beam Piper

... well-cut face was that of a man about Gerald Burton's own age. The features were stilled in the awful immobility of death: but for that immobility, the dead man lying there before them might ...
— The End of Her Honeymoon • Marie Belloc Lowndes

... head-dress, and the train of her long brocade robe undulated about her little feet. Same face, same figure. It was she indeed; and to prevent any possible doubt of it, she was seated on the back of a huge old- fashioned book strongly resembling the "Cosmography of Munster." Her immobility but half reassured me; I was really afraid that she was going to take some more nuts out of her alms-purse and throw the ...
— The Crime of Sylvestre Bonnard • Anatole France

... individuality by a stereotyped method of instruction. 'All social enactments,' says Harnack, 'have a tendency to circumscribe the activities of the individual. If we unduly fetter the free play of individual effort we break the mainspring of progress and enterprise, and create a state of social immobility which is the antecedent of national decay.'[18] Youth ought to be taught self-reliance and strenuousness of will; and this is a work which can only be done in the home by the firm yet kindly influence of the parents. ...
— Christianity and Ethics - A Handbook of Christian Ethics • Archibald B. C. Alexander

... and the crow screamed in alarm and darted away. So, alone and with no one to come to his relief, the sailorman stood his watch. About him the branches bent with the snow, the icicles froze him into immobility, and in the tree-tops strange groanings filled him with alarms. But undaunted, month after month, alert and smiling, he waited the return of the beautiful lady and of the tall young man who had devoured her ...
— The Red Cross Girl • Richard Harding Davis

... plucked my sleeve. It was Hibbard's. Startled by my immobility and silence, he had stepped in with quaking members, expecting he hardly knew what. But no sooner did his eyes fall on the prostrate form which held me spellbound, than an unforeseen change took place in him. What had unnerved me, ...
— The Filigree Ball • Anna Katharine Green

... where indeed the danger was acutest, they were trapped by two of the Watchetts. These elderly ladies shot almost roguishly out of the drawing-room, and by their smiles struck the descending party into immobility. ...
— Hilda Lessways • Arnold Bennett

... yielding beneath his feet. That may have been so, but, whether it were so or not, the crisis came like a bolt out of the blue, and he was checked in full career, as if a voice had spoken to the sea in its wildest storm, and frozen its waves into immobility. ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... eternal hills are vibrant to the eye of science, and the very stones are pulsing with the joy of life. The countryside sings, and there is the beat of rhythm not merely in our hearts but in every particle of our body. Stillness is a delusion, and immobility a fiction of the senses. Life is movement and activity, and rigidity and stiffness come more near to what we understand as death. Yet even in death there is no stillness, there is but a change in the form of activity. The body is no longer alive as ...
— Spirit and Music • H. Ernest Hunt

... Spaces of complete immobility separated each of these movements. The land seemed to lie dead .... Then the old shepherd returned stiffly across the field. Stiffly and painfully the frozen earth was trodden under and gave beneath pressure like a treadmill. ...
— Jacob's Room • Virginia Woolf

... after a moment, his grandfather seemed not awe-inspiring, but just a frail old man, paralyzed into almost complete immobility, lying here almost pathetically happy to have his grandson at last with him. An old man, with nothing of the mystic about him—an old man who had been—unknown to the savants of his Earth—perhaps the greatest scientist among them. Quietly, with ...
— The World Beyond • Raymond King Cummings

... friendship. Nor was he astonished that even in the wan light those brick-dust cheeks should deepen to terra-cotta, those hard blue eyes glitter with recognition, and the small thin-lipped mouth lose for a moment its immobility and gape, yes, gape, in the amazement of meeting somebody whom he never could have expected to meet at such an ...
— The Altar Steps • Compton MacKenzie

... thus if a hungry man, as Plato says (Cf. De Coelo ii, 13), be confronted on either side with two portions of food equally appetizing and at an equal distance, he is not moved towards one more than to the other; and he finds the reason of this in the immobility of the earth in the middle of the world. Now, if that which is equally (eligible) with something else cannot be chosen, much less can that be chosen which appears as less (eligible). Therefore if two or more things are available, of which one appears to be more (eligible), it is impossible ...
— Summa Theologica, Part I-II (Pars Prima Secundae) - From the Complete American Edition • Saint Thomas Aquinas

... the stings of a million insects. Sometimes, not daring to lift his head to look about him, he had to trust to his ears and his hound-like sense of smell for information as to what was going on. And sometimes it was only his tireless immobility that saved him from the stroke of a startled adder or a questioning and indignant crotalus. After long swaying, poised for the death-stroke, the serpent would decide that the menacing thing before it was not alive. It would slowly dissolve its ...
— In the Morning of Time • Charles G. D. Roberts

... from his look of stony immobility. If he mourned for his patient wife of more than half a century, no outward sign betrayed his feelings. If his spirit suffered with suppressed grief, his strong frame bore up under it without ...
— For Woman's Love • Mrs. E. D. E. N. Southworth

... life of this man was a pitiful tragedy, his filmy eyes sightless, his thin white fingers ever eager and nervous, his hours full of deep thought and silent immobility. To him, what was the benefit of that beautiful Perthshire castle which he had purchased from Lord Strathavon a year before his compulsory retirement? What was the use of the old ancestral manor near Caistor in Lincolnshire, or the town-house ...
— The House of Whispers • William Le Queux

... telegraph lines were closed to the German agent, could this person have been put upon the scent? It hardly seemed possible that this was an agent of Germany. And yet as the miles flew by, the stranger's silence, immobility and unchanging expression got on Renwick's nerves. He was in no mood to do a ...
— The Secret Witness • George Gibbs

... bees are apodal, they are not condemned to absolute immobility in their cells; for they can move by a spiral motion. During the first three days, this motion is so slow as scarcely to be perceptible, but it afterwards becomes more evident. I have then observed them perform two complete revolutions in an hour and three quarters. When the period of ...
— New observations on the natural history of bees • Francis Huber

... fellow when rid of the self-consciousness of jealousy. His eyes, mouth, chin, and nose, acquired from reliable and recognizable sources, were good features, and statuesque in their immobility beneath the drooping curves of his broad soft hat. He was tall, with the slenderness of youth, despite his evident weight and strength. He was long-waisted and lithe and small of girth, with broad square shoulders, whose play of muscles as he strove with the gate was not altogether ...
— The Phantoms Of The Foot-Bridge - 1895 • Charles Egbert Craddock (AKA Mary Noailles Murfree)

... but vigorous enough to keep them moving. Often, too—indeed nearly always—I have found that after exhausting my all too scanty stock of patience, and making an "exposure" in despair, the errant blossoms and leaflets would settle down into perfect immobility, as if to say, "There! don't be cross—we'll behave," ...
— Getting Acquainted with the Trees • J. Horace McFarland

... crazy. I fancied that I had found Goethe's Mignon—that queer creature of his German imagination. And, indeed, there was a good deal of similarity between them; the same rapid transitions from the utmost restlessness to complete immobility, the same enigmatical speeches, the same ...
— A Hero of Our Time • M. Y. Lermontov

... her face. How often had he seen her sitting thus by the fireside at home! But though he stood without in the dark and cold for many minutes, she did not stir; neither hand nor foot moved. At last he grew terrified at this utter immobility, and stepping through the hall he told the landlady that the English lady had business with him. He opened the door, and then Felicita ...
— Cobwebs and Cables • Hesba Stretton

... tumults without. The foot of the Master on the midnight stormy sea will smooth the waves which the moonbeams have not power to still, but only to reveal their heavings. 'They that trust in the Lord shall be like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved,' and yet is not torpid in its immobility, but full of fertility and of ...
— Expositions Of Holy Scripture - Volume I: St. Luke, Chaps. I to XII • Alexander Maclaren

... not in the sense of coldness or immobility, but in the regularity of her features and the absence of any coloring in her cheeks. She is lovely, and there breathes through every trait a gentle soul that robs my admiration of all awe and makes my old and empty heart long to serve her. Her eyes are gray and her hair a reddish brown, with kinks ...
— The Forsaken Inn - A Novel • Anna Katharine Green

... following, is caused only by the imbecility and unreality of the body, which is in continual motion, mutation, and change, the operations of which must follow the condition of its faculty, the which is a result of the condition of its nature and being. How can immobility, reality, entity, truth be contained in that which is ever different, and always makes and is made, other and otherwise? What truth, what picture can be painted and impressed, where the pupils of the eyes are dispersed in water, the water into steam, the steam into flame, ...
— The Heroic Enthusiast, Part II (Gli Eroici Furori) - An Ethical Poem • Giordano Bruno

... waving, the mandibles opening and closing, the palpae trembling for days, for weeks, even for months. The thighs tremble for a minute or two at most; and the struggle is over. Henceforth there is complete immobility. The significance of this sudden inertia is forced upon me: the Philanthus has stabbed the cervical ganglions. Hence the sudden immobility of all the organs of the head: hence the real, not the apparent death of the bee. The Philanthus ...
— Social Life in the Insect World • J. H. Fabre

... was firing into silence. Something rattled and flopped in a chute at his elbow. He turned, irritably. That Mr. Pierce's attention should have been diverted even for a moment by this was sufficient evidence that he was disconcerted by the immobility of the foe. But his glance quickly reverted and with added weight. Heavily he stared, then delivered ...
— The Clarion • Samuel Hopkins Adams

... admitted of no reply; and Mien-yaun was about to resume his way with a sigh, when the young lady insinuated a third osculatory hint, more penetrating than either of the others, and bestowed on him, besides, a most ravishing smile. He fluttered internally, but succeeded in preserving his outward immobility. He entered into conversation with the elderly female, observing that it was a fine day, and that it promised to continue so, although destiny was impenetrable, and clouds might overshadow the radiant face of Nature at any unexpected moment. To these ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Volume 3, No. 20, June, 1859 • Various

... on, after a few minutes' pause, "presents an enigma which at present I cannot hope to solve. The fact that she received her husband back again, knowing what he was and what he was capable of, is inexplicable to me. The woman herself is a mystery. I do not know what lies behind her extraordinary immobility. Feeling she must have, and courage, or she would never have dared to have ridded herself of the scourge of her life. But beyond that my judgment tells me nothing. I only know that sooner or later I shall seek her out. I shall discover all that I want to know, one way or the ...
— The Evil Shepherd • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... also imperturbably grave, except when offering aid to a lady or a little child, on which occasions the faintest symptoms of a smile floated for a moment on his visage like an April sunbeam. At all other times his expression was that of incorruptible justice and awful immobility. No amount of chaff, no quantity of abuse, no kind of flattery, no sort of threat could move him any more than the seething billows of the Mediterranean can move Gibraltar. Costermongers growled ...
— Dusty Diamonds Cut and Polished - A Tale of City Arab Life and Adventure • R.M. Ballantyne

... she said, with a desperate anger at his immobility. "When I saw you with her to-day, I ...
— The Voice of the People • Ellen Glasgow

... their remnants were absorbed by younger and more vigorous peoples. Others (the Hindoos and Persians) relapsed into a semi-barbarous state; and a third class (the Chinese) were arrested in their growth, and remained fixed in immobility. The best that the antique Orient had to bequeath in the way of spiritual possessions fell to the share of the classic nations of the West, the Greeks and the Romans. They greatly increased the heritage by their own spiritual achievements, and so ...
— Jewish History • S. M. Dubnow

... these differences. He fancies that the life of the state can be as easily fashioned as that of the individual. He is favourable to a balance of power, but never seems to have considered that power might be so balanced as to produce an absolute immobility in the state. Nor is he alive to the evils of confounding vice and crime; or to the necessity of governments abstaining from ...
— Laws • Plato

... motionless before the four pictures. His immobility, his admiration, can only be understood by other souls open to ideal beauty, to the ineffable joy of beholding art made perfect; such as these can stand for whole hours before the Antiope—Correggio's ...
— Cousin Pons • Honore de Balzac

... room. It was in a little hotel in the island of St. Thomas in the West Indies (in the year '75) where we found him one hot afternoon extended on three chairs, all alone in the loud buzzing of flies to which his immobility and his cadaverous aspect gave a most gruesome significance. Our invasion must have displeased him because he got off the chairs brusquely and walked out, leaving with me an indelibly weird impression of his thin shanks. One of the men with me said ...
— Victory • Joseph Conrad

... froze into stark immobility, staring with startled eyes at the base of a rocky crag thirty yards away. Something was lurking there in the green-black shadows—a great sprawling black shape of abysmal horror, with a single flaming opalescent eye fixed unwinkingly ...
— Astounding Stories, May, 1931 • Various

... there. As this was a riddle to me, I propounded it to Yejiro, who only shook his head and propounded it to somebody else; a compliment to the inquiry certainly, if not to my choice of informant. This somebody else told him the man was fishing. Except for the immobility of the figure, I never saw a man look less like it in ...
— Noto, An Unexplored Corner of Japan • Percival Lowell

... mirthlessly. A young girl hanging on her escort's arm, passing, glanced at him and giggled. It was a different Jimmie Dale for the moment. For once his immobility had forsaken him. He laughed again—a sort of unnatural, desperate indifference to everything falling upon him. What did it matter, the moment or two it would take to read the letter? He looked around him. He was on the corner ...
— The Adventures of Jimmie Dale • Frank L. Packard

... follows: "I do not admit the intangibility of the Statuto. Statutes are made to prevent governments from retrograding, not from advancing. Before us there can be nothing but progress.... If we retain immutable the fundamental law of the state, we desire immobility, and should throw aside all advances which have thus far been made by the constituted authorities. I understand that in the Statuto of Charles Albert nothing is said of revision, and this was prudent. But how should this silence be interpreted? It should ...
— The Governments of Europe • Frederic Austin Ogg

... stirs neither head nor hand except upon special occasions; but he has a powerful voice, he pours out his words in a strong, full volume, and the force he has in this respect compensates for the general immobility he displays during ...
— Our Churches and Chapels • Atticus

... of black light seemed to look through and beyond us. For an instant there was no stir. Hundreds of faces set toward her, held by the wonder of her. Fong Ling's yellow visage moved for the first time from its immobility with a sort of awe, a dread. And when my gaze came back to her, I noticed that, with the dropping of her hands to join the finger-tips, she had left, where that little, pressing fist had been, a blur of red on ...
— The Million-Dollar Suitcase • Alice MacGowan

... iron and steam so affrighting to other men of his generation. A lover of light in all its swift prismatic changes, he was naturally a lover of speed. He realized that speed was one of the two most romantic things in the world. The other is immobility. At present the two extremes of romantic expression are the Sphinx and—the automobile. Unless you can realize that an automobile is more romantic than a stage-coach, you know nothing about romance. Soon the automobile will have its nose put out by the air-ship, and we shall ...
— Vanishing Roads and Other Essays • Richard Le Gallienne

... to an attitude of resistance, the impulse of progress had come utterly to an end. Men doubted of the truth of principles that seemed to have brought about the horrors of the Revolution. They listened to Burke as he built up his theory of political immobility on the basis of an absolute perfection in the constitution of things as they were. But even in this moment of reaction they still clung unconsciously to a belief in something better, to a trust that progress would again be possible, and to the man who reflected ...
— History of the English People, Volume VIII (of 8) - Modern England, 1760-1815 • John Richard Green

... said yesterday and before, because she, as well as we and everything around us, is also the same as yesterday and before. It is very hard and painful for one to live, when nothing changes around him, and if it does not kill his soul for good, the immobility of the surroundings becomes all the more painful the longer he lives. We always spoke of women in such a manner that at times we were disgusted at our own rude and shameless words, and this is quite clear, for the women we had known, ...
— Twenty-six and One and Other Stories • Maksim Gorky

... emancipation than in the United States. Yet here, a majority of the original thirteen colonies have wholly discarded slavery, and given themselves up to the dominion of free white men; while others among those known as border States, notwithstanding their apparent immobility, have long been unconsciously preparing to follow in the same path of safety. Even without the rebellion, it is demonstrable, we believe, that the border States could not long have resisted the necessity for gradual, but complete ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol 2, No 6, December 1862 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... quietness, stoicism, composure, insensibility, quietude, tranquillity, immobility, lethargy, sluggishness, ...
— English Synonyms and Antonyms - With Notes on the Correct Use of Prepositions • James Champlin Fernald

... reappeared at the door, preceded this time by two commissaires de police. These men entered the room and, amid the unbroken silence and total immobility of the Assembly, summoned the Representatives to disperse. The President ordered them to retire themselves. One of the commissaires was agitated and faltered; the other broke out in invectives. The President said to him: "Sir, ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Vol. 17 • Charles Francis Horne

... which gave force to her otherwise commonplace features. So remarkable was this expression and so apparently was it directed against myself, that I felt like throwing up my window and asking the poor old creature what I could do for her. But her extreme immobility deterred me. For all the intentness of her look there was no invitation in it warranting such an advance on my part. She simply stared down at me in unbroken anxiety, nor, though I watched her for some minutes with an intensity equal to her own, ...
— The Mayor's Wife • Anna Katharine Green

... thrill of the more vital world of strife in which he was living. For a moment the roar of London was in her ears. She saw the lighted thoroughfares, the crowded pavements, the faces of the men and women, all a little strained and eager, so different from the placid immobility of the world in which she lived. She rose to her feet and moved restlessly about the room. Presently she lifted the curtain and looked out. There was a pause in the storm and a great mass of black clouds had just been driven past the face of the ...
— Nobody's Man • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... young man, although he had a face which some people called empty because of the singular immobility of every feature except his eyes; but whether the set expression was worn as a mask, or whether he really had nothing in him, was a question which could only be decided on intimate acquaintance; for although some effect of personality continually suggested ...
— The Heavenly Twins • Madame Sarah Grand

... lower steps the priests of the temple, in full ceremonial costume, are waiting to receive us. Tall men they are, robed in violet and purple silks shot through with dragon-patterns in gold. Their lofty fantastic head-dresses, their voluminous and beautiful costume, and the solemn immobility of their hierophantic attitudes make them at first sight seem marvellous statues only. Somehow or other there comes suddenly back to me the memory of a strange French print I used to wonder at when a child, representing a group of Assyrian astrologers. Only their eyes ...
— Glimpses of an Unfamiliar Japan - First Series • Lafcadio Hearn

... authority but do misrepresent it before men, and work as a handicap in its adaptability and in its work of winning souls to Christianity and re-establishing the unity of Christendom. Fortunately this very immobility has saved it from a surrender to the new forces that were developed in secular society during the last two centuries, as it did yield to the compulsion of those that were let loose in the two that ...
— Towards the Great Peace • Ralph Adams Cram

... towards her. Something of the servility of his manner had gone. For the first time she looked at him closely, appreciated the tense immobility of his features, the still, penetrating light of his cold eyes. A queer premonition of trouble for a moment ...
— The Pawns Count • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... "do you realize what centuries of suppression are doing to my sex? Do you understand that woman is degenerating into an immobility—an inertia—a molluskular condition of receptive passivity which is rendering us, year by year, more unfitted to either think or act for ourselves? Even in the matter of marriage we are not permitted by custom to assume the initiative. ...
— The Gay Rebellion • Robert W. Chambers

... and I left him to his immobility. His hold on life was as slender as his hold on sanity. I was oppressed by my lonely responsibilities. I went into my cabin to seek relief in a few hours' sleep, but almost before I closed my eyes the man on deck came ...
— The Shadow-Line - A Confession • Joseph Conrad



Words linked to "Immobility" :   motionlessness, immotility, inertness, immovability, lifelessness, quality, rootage, stationariness, mobility, fixedness, immovableness, stillness, immobile



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