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Monotone   /mˈɑnətˌoʊn/   Listen
Monotone

noun
1.
An unchanging intonation.  Synonyms: drone, droning.
2.
A single tone repeated with different words or different rhythms (especially in rendering liturgical texts).






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Monotone" Quotes from Famous Books



... into the dark, the mysterious half-dark, where the gradually deepening twilight blended the distance into the enshrouding pall of gloom. Involuntarily the girl shuddered and started nervously at the splash of an otter. A billion mosquitoes droned their unceasing monotone. The low sound was everywhere—among the branches of the gnarled banskian, above the surface of the river, and on and on and on, to whine ...
— The Gun-Brand • James B. Hendryx

... her dainty, close-set ears; no sound of man stirred in this wilderness—only the lonely bird-cry from above; only the ceaseless monotone of the pine crests stirred by some high ...
— Special Messenger • Robert W. Chambers

... its juncture with the pike. It was slow, tedious, grinding work. "Glad I didn't go down a couple of miles," he thought. And as he backed slowly away, the dry, hot wind came in rattling gusts and swept the dust in yellow eddies after him, bearing the voice of the grasshoppers, the monotone of futility. ...
— Stubble • George Looms

... to a mournful monotone as she spoke—colourless, unimpassioned, melancholy. But to Dickson it was twice as terrifying as when she shouted and laughed. He looked as she directed towards the big column of smoke, which suddenly sprang up, as it were, from a bed of writhing, ...
— Colonial Born - A tale of the Queensland bush • G. Firth Scott

... muezzin cry, or call to prayers. Even if it had been in no way singular in itself, it would have been deeply interesting from its novelty and uniqueness, but the cry itself was quite unlike anything I have ever heard before. The beginning of each sentence was uttered in a rapid monotone, and towards the end it rose gradually till it ended in a prolonged, shrill wail, which floated overhead through the still air with an indescribably sad and ghostlike effect; heard at night, it would have thrilled one like ...
— The Life and Letters of Lewis Carroll • Stuart Dodgson Collingwood

... everything was! The copper saucepans shone resplendently. The black and white pavement looked like an ivory chessboard. Two Sisters were sitting peeling vegetables which they threw into a bowl of water. An enormous pot, on the well-polished stove, was humming its inviting monotone. It was this pot which exhaled the delicious smell that had greeted us when we entered the house. The whole picture recalled one of Bail's appetising canvases. The two Sisters raised their eyes, looked at us and—yes, they smiled too. B., feeling eloquent, wanted to make ...
— In the Field (1914-1915) - The Impressions of an Officer of Light Cavalry • Marcel Dupont

... was the dying light of day, but the glare of noonday, the quiet light of evening, the black of the night, were all one to him now. Was it going to be so with his mind, his spirit? Would all that other light, light of the mind and soul, be gulped into this black monotone, this nothingness? ...
— The Glory Of The Conquered • Susan Glaspell

... friends here," continued Monkey, in the same hushed monotone. "That's why he's gone inside. That tall genelman you was talkin' with. Very close they was at one time. Too close in a manner o' speakin'. See, you can be too close friends. Then you gets to know too much about each other. Then there's ...
— Boy Woodburn - A Story of the Sussex Downs • Alfred Ollivant

... the next in order, is bigger in conception, bigger in workmanship. It is not so cheerful, perhaps, as its predecessor in the same key; the heavy basses twanging in tenths like a contrabasso are intentionally monotone in effect. There is defiance and despair in the mood. And look at the line before the last—those consecutive fifths and sevenths were not placed there as a whim; they mean something. Here is a mazurka that will be heard later than 1955! By the way, ...
— Old Fogy - His Musical Opinions and Grotesques • James Huneker

... the wall, you may find two bits of fresco by Giotto, the Meeting of S. Joachim and S. Anna at the Golden Gate, and the Birth of the Virgin. On your left you pass into the Chiostro Verde, where Paolo Uccello has painted scenes from the Old Testament in a sort of green monotone, for once without enthusiasm. Above you and around you rises the old convent and the great tower; there, in the far corner, perhaps a friar plays with a little cat, here a pigeon flutters under the arches about the little ruined space of grass, ...
— Florence and Northern Tuscany with Genoa • Edward Hutton

... blissfully unconscious. He talked in a quiet monotone; only now and then his voice rose; only now and then there were accompanying gestures. Jim had a straight mile down the broad village street to walk before he reached the church and ...
— The Copy-Cat and Other Stories • Mary E. Wilkins Freeman

... to read as rapidly as possible, so as to be done with the task, and he began in a high-pitched monotone, reading with a blind mind and no sense of the ...
— Penrod and Sam • Booth Tarkington

... surf was seen only as a white glow waxing and waning, a constant drone was borne in to them—a thunder of the white horses' hoofs trampling on Pull-an'-be-Damned; the vindictive sound of seas falling down one after another on wasted rocks, on shifting sand bars—a powerful monotone seeming to increase in the ear with fuller attention. The contrast was marked between the heavy-lying peace of the inner harbor and that hungry reverberation from without of waters seeking fresh holds along a mutilated ...
— The Best Short Stories of 1921 and the Yearbook of the American Short Story • Various

... me how Time is passing. While I sleep he is still marking his steps, so that sometimes I have a feeling of awe, as if my mysterious friend were counting my own life away. Then again I am sure that in the faint, persistent monotone of his voice I hear the singing of the old mower's inevitable scythe. The Imagination contemplates this friend of mine with wonder. But Science sees him holding the hand of a captain in his ship at sea, or of a conductor ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 11, No. 63, January, 1863 - A Magazine Of Literature, Art, And Politics • Various

... together, and we were quite surprised to see that everything seemed to be in its place as usual. Summer is over, the fields have been reaped; there is a comfortable row of stacks in the rickyard; the pleasant humming of an engine came up the valley, as it sang its homely monotone, now low, now loud. After tea—the evenings have begun to close in—I went off to my study, took out my notebook and looked over my subjects, but I could make nothing of any of them. I could see that there were some good ideas among them; but none ...
— The Altar Fire • Arthur Christopher Benson

... take me a week," she went on with no change in her monotone; "I can give you an answer in a day or ...
— Other Things Being Equal • Emma Wolf

... Mrs. Lumley repeated in a dreary monotone which seemed strangely out of keeping with the half-concealed kindliness which was revealed in her homely countenance. She was a working matron, a sort of upper servant, and had been three years in the place, which, I gradually gleaned from her, had been started as a ...
— The Long Day - The Story of a New York Working Girl As Told by Herself • Dorothy Richardson

... lessons should be largely "conversational in style," to cultivate flexibility of voice and to break up the dreary monotone ...
— New National First Reader • Charles J. Barnes, et al.

... perfume, I repeat, was one against which the venerable Fathers of the Church warned the faithful." The preacher's voice had sagged to a monotone. Baldur lifted his eyes in dismay. Near him sat the same woman, and she still stared at him as if to rebuke him for his abstraction. About her hovered the odour of iris. Had it been only a disturbing dream? Intoxicated by his escape from damnation, from the last of the Deadly Arts, he bowed his ...
— Visionaries • James Huneker

... with six ladies was apparently the opportunity of a lifetime, and she was determined to make the most of it. She volunteered to recite, and wound out a long poem in such a rapid, breathless monotone that it was hardly possible to distinguish a word. The party politely expressed gratitude, whereupon she announced: "I'll say it for you again!" and plunged at once into ...
— The Madcap of the School • Angela Brazil

... Wheeling, some eighty or ninety young adventurers, in charge of Captain Michael Cresap of Maryland, were waiting for the freshets to sweep them down the Ohio into Kentucky. When the news reached them, they greeted it with the wild monotone chant and the ceremonies preliminary to Indian warfare. They planted the war pole, stripped and painted themselves, and starting the war dance called on Cresap to be their "white leader." The captain, however, declined; but in that wild circling line ...
— Pioneers of the Old Southwest - A Chronicle of the Dark and Bloody Ground • Constance Lindsay Skinner

... the year's wretchedness in the skies; While on the blind, disheartened sea A tramp-wind plies Cringingly and dejectedly! And rain and darkness, mist and mud, They cling, they close, they sneak into the blood, They crawl and crowd upon the brain: Till in a dull, dense monotone of pain The past is found a kind of maze, At whose every coign and crook, Broad angle and privy nook, There waits a hooded Memory, Sad, yet with ...
— Hawthorn and Lavender - with Other Verses • William Ernest Henley

... and looked at Constans indifferently. Then he spoke in the inflectionless monotone of ...
— The Doomsman • Van Tassel Sutphen

... movement. People from all walks of life, from the Queen to the common laborer, became regular attendants at the unpretentious sanctuary, and the eyes of some old people still shine when they recall the moving spirit of the services there, the venerable appearance and warm monotone voice of the pastor, and, especially, the hearty, soul-stirring singing. Many of Grundtvig's own great hymns were introduced at Vartov. From there they spread throughout the church. And it was to a large extent the hearty, inspiring congregational ...
— Hymns and Hymnwriters of Denmark • Jens Christian Aaberg

... should know better. All results achieved by us are self-promised, and all self-promises are made in dreams awake. Dreaming is the relief of labor, the wine that sustains us in act. We learn to love labor, not for itself, but for the opportunity it furnishes for dreaming, which is the great under-monotone of real life, unheard, unnoticed, because of its constancy. Living is dreaming. Only in the grave are there no dreams. Let no one smile at Ben-Hur for doing that which he himself would have done at that time and place ...
— Ben-Hur: A Tale of the Christ • Lew Wallace

... born a dogged sort of devil," he went on almost in a monotone. "The fact did not manifest itself to me until I came to the time when—all the rest of me dropped into a bottomless gulf. That perhaps describes it. I found myself suddenly standing on the edge of it. And youth, and future, ...
— Robin • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... back. Overhead a bluebird, straining its little throat in exultant melody, flew from branch to branch of the big chestnut-tree, and the hum of insects made soft monotone to the shrill cry of the locust, which promised greater heat next day. In the distance the Calverton road stretched white and dusty south to town, north to the unknown land, the land of dreams to Peggy and to Peggy's mother, who had never been beyond it, and as she looked toward it she wondered ...
— Miss Gibbie Gault • Kate Langley Bosher

... not wordy, and he tarried but a moment, yet he explained his paralysis. In the dreary monotone of a chronic sour temper he related that some Confederates, about a year before, had come here impressing horses, and their officer, on being called by him "no gentleman," had struck him behind the ear with the butt of a carbine. I asked what punishment ...
— The Cavalier • George Washington Cable

... was engaged in his rotary denunciation of the criminals, oblivious of every other circumstance. Mr. Rising stood spellbound by this, to him, new phase of genius, and at last his friend became dimly aware of him. He did not halt in his scathing treadmill and continued in the slow monotone of speech: ...
— Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete - The Personal And Literary Life Of Samuel Langhorne Clemens • Albert Bigelow Paine

... the citizens of Fredericksburg left no hope of such a support. As the only substitute in my reach, I sat on the edge of the pew door and its panel, drew his arm across my knee, raised his head to my shoulder, and held it there by laying mine against it. In this way I could talk in a low monotone to him, and the hopes to which the soul turns when about to leave the tenement of clay. He gasped acquiescence in these hopes, and his words led several men near to draw their sleeves across their eyes; but they all knew he ...
— Half a Century • Jane Grey Cannon Swisshelm

... a musical recital, whether monotone or inflected, can be inferred from the rubric of the lessons which existed in the Prayer-Book from 1549 to 1604. "Then shall be read two Lessons distinctly with a loud voice, that the people may hear. . . . And, to the end that the people may better hear, in such places ...
— Ritual Conformity - Interpretations of the Rubrics of the Prayer-Book • Unknown

... became doyen, and of him the following story is told: The great Van Dyck visited him unexpectedly one day, and demanded that he make a sketch of him (Van Dyck) at once, in his presence. Berincx accordingly painted in monotone the sketch in full length, adding the details in carnation, and so charmed was Van Dyck, that he assured him that he would adopt the system in his own work, "if he would permit." He died full of honors ...
— Vanished towers and chimes of Flanders • George Wharton Edwards

... four o'clock on a September day, so that the atmosphere was well-brewed to a visible haze. There was deep stillness, broken only by a light rattle, a light chink, a small sweeping sound, and an occasional monotone in French, such as might be expected to issue from an ingeniously constructed automaton. Round two long tables were gathered two serried crowds of human beings, all save one having their faces and attention bent on the tables. The one exception ...
— Daniel Deronda • George Eliot

... south—bare, boundless, precipitous; and to the east a glittering iceberg floated slowly towards us, like a palace of gold and emerald. The ship rolled calmly upon the long swells, the ripples plashing in low lulling monotone, and her hull and spars were reflected darkly beneath me. I drew a long gray hair from my temple, and subjected it to a gentle friction between my palm and finger; then I pricked my wrist, and leaning forward, placed it against my heart: five blood-drops—symbols of the five types of organized ...
— Tales of the Chesapeake • George Alfred Townsend

... could still hear the shrill whistle of their flutes, the tinkle of the silver chimes on their toug; then a blank, filled with the hollow roar of battle, then a clear note from their reeds, a tinkle, an echoing chime—and nothing, save the immense monotone of the cannonade. ...
— The Maids of Paradise • Robert W. (Robert William) Chambers

... through the throng, and up to the hostess— Mrs. Burke, stout, honest, with sympathy in her eyes and humor in the lines round her sweet mouth. "Well, Josh," she said in a slow, pleasant monotone, "you HAVE done a lot of growing since I saw you. I always knew you'd come to some bad end. And here you are— in politics ...
— The Fashionable Adventures of Joshua Craig • David Graham Phillips

... high terrace are rich meadows, vocal with frogs rejoicing in the rain, and expressing their joy, not in the sober monotone of our English frogs, but each according to his kind; one bellowing, the next barking, the next cawing, and the next (probably the little green Hylas, who has come down out of the trees to breed) quacking in treble like a tiny drake. The bark (I suspect) ...
— Prose Idylls • Charles Kingsley

... grown strange and fixed, began to detail to us what was passing in this scene, in a curious monotone such as a person might use who was repeating something learned by heart. This was the substance of ...
— When the World Shook - Being an Account of the Great Adventure of Bastin, Bickley and Arbuthnot • H. Rider Haggard

... time later a vibratory monotone commenced far up under the stars, gathering strength and volume until it rolled in long pulsations down the ...
— Lorimer of the Northwest • Harold Bindloss

... grove. The groups around the grave, the dark faces, the red garments, the scattered lights, the misty boughs, were weird and strange. The men sang one of their own wild chants. Two crickets sang also, one on either side, and did not cease their little monotone, even when the three volleys were fired above the graves. Just before the coffins were lowered, an old man whispered to me that I must have their position altered,—the heads must be towards the west; so it was done,—though they are in a place so veiled in woods that either rising or setting ...
— Army Life in a Black Regiment • Thomas Wentworth Higginson

... in silence through the window at the blinking lights in Washington, turned and looked moodily at his calm host. He spoke in a slow, dreamy monotone, his eyes on ...
— The Man in Gray • Thomas Dixon

... the sedate repose and infinite calm that used to environ them. In the feverish, pulsating life of the young metropolis they often stopped oppressed, giddy, and choking; the roar of the streets and thoroughfares was meaningless to them, except to revive strange memories of the deep, unvarying monotone of the evening wind over their humbler roof on the Sierran hillside. Civic bred and nurtured as they were, the recurrence of these sensations perplexed and ...
— Devil's Ford • Bret Harte

... indifference alike, though there were some who, for reasons best known to themselves, evidently felt that they stood more securely than the rest. She moved through game and dance with a slow yet free grace; she spoke seldom, and in a low, bell-like monotone, containing no hint of any possible emotional development, and for the rest, her shadow of a disdainful smile seemed to stand her in good stead. Clearly as she stood out from among her companions from the first, at ...
— Lodusky • Frances Hodgson Burnett

... all," she replied, in the same even monotone. "The Countess Nina is, by her own desire, following a strict regime, but to-day being a universal feast-day all rules are somewhat relaxed. The reverend mother desires me to inform you that it is now the ...
— Vendetta - A Story of One Forgotten • Marie Corelli

... le ciel qui brule et la mer qui moutonne, Au somnolent soleil d'un midi monotone, Tu songes, O guerriere, aux vieux conquistadors; Et dans l'enervement des nuits chaudes et calmes, Bercant ta gloire eteinte, O cite, tu t'endors Sous les palmiers, ...
— Confessions of a Young Man • George Moore

... sure of that," she said slowly, looking straight into his eyes and speaking almost in a monotone. He started. For a moment he ...
— The Rose in the Ring • George Barr McCutcheon

... the photograph and cast it into Beauvais's lap. "Do you recognize that face? Is it not a mute accusation to your warped conscience?" The voice, changing from the monotone of narrative, grew strong and contemptuous. "I know you. I recognized you the moment I laid eyes on you, only I could not place you. Perhaps it was because it did not seem possible that you would dare show your face to civilized people. That photograph has ...
— The Puppet Crown • Harold MacGrath

... night, How we shiver with affright At the melancholy menace of their tone! For every sound that floats From the rust within their throats Is a groan. And the people—ah, the people— They that dwell up in the steeple, All alone, And who, tolling, tolling, tolling, In that muffled monotone, Feel a glory in so rolling On the human heart a stone— They are neither man nor woman— They are neither brute nor human— They are Ghouls: And their king it is who tolls; And he rolls, rolls, rolls, Rolls A Paean from the ...
— Public Speaking • Clarence Stratton

... least in this, that through the whole piece he dragged along just half a beat behind the rest. The others showed a most decided penchant for the ancient Greek music, which, as is well known, having nothing to do with harmony, ran on in unison or monotone. They all sang treble, with slight variations, caused by accidental rising and falling of the voice, say ...
— Hyperion • Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

... can have no confidence that it will ever be expelled. Which is the gloomy system—that which paints in undisguised blackness the facts of life, and over against their blackest darkness, the radiant light of a great hope shining bright and glorious, or one that paints humanity in a uniform monotone of indistinguishable grey involving the past, the present, and the future—which, believing in no disease, hopes for no cure? My text, taken in conjunction with the grand words which follow, about 'The new man, which, after ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Ephesians; Epistles of St. Peter and St. John • Alexander Maclaren

... of the blanket. The Ramblin' Kid worked easily, carefully, but in absolute confidence, with her. As he cautiously saddled the mare he talked in a low, drawling monotone, uttering endearing phrases and occasionally slipping a lump of sugar—a supply of which he had got that night from the kitchen—into her mouth. She ate ...
— The Ramblin' Kid • Earl Wayland Bowman

... chair before the little window, automatically scanned the faces of those passing through the barrier, ready to release the clutch with a "Good evening" if the person were known to her, or to say in a dull monotone, "Six-pence, please," to a stranger. Every now and then she glanced at the darkening sky towards the North where clouds were gathering up, and after a while, single drops of rain began to fall. Very soon the empty promenade glittered black under a downpour, the lights making ...
— The Privet Hedge • J. E. Buckrose

... voice to a low, even monotone. "You are the child of disaster if ever woman was. Your father was a poor, weak fool, a big, handsome, good-hearted fool whom Nature had endowed with nothing more than a perfect exterior. He was a Wall Street man, of a sort. One of those gamblers who ...
— The Golden Woman - A Story of the Montana Hills • Ridgwell Cullum

... never ast you how you figgered to settle wi' Jake," he said. "I guess it'll be all"—he broke off, and glanced out prairieward, but went on almost immediately,—"a settlin'. I've seen you kind o' riled. And I've seen Jake." He stood up and peered into the darkness while he talked in his even monotone. "Yup," he went on, "ther's ways o' dealin' wi' men—an' ways. Guess, now, ef you wus dealin' wi' an honest citizen you'd jest talk him fair. Mind, I figger to know you a heap." His eyes suddenly turned on the man he was addressing, but returned ...
— The Night Riders - A Romance of Early Montana • Ridgwell Cullum

... lay over the river, and a steamer, now and then uttering a dull whistle, was slowly forging up against the current. Damp and cold clouds, of a monotone pallor, enveloped the steamer from all sides and drowned all sounds, dissolving them in their troubled dampness. The brazen roaring of the signals came out in a muffled, melancholy drone, and was oddly brief as it burst forth from the whistle. The sound seemed ...
— Foma Gordyeff - (The Man Who Was Afraid) • Maxim Gorky

... in a low monotone, that nevertheless penetrated to every part of the room. He had a voice of peculiar quality, as sweet as the tones of a tenor, and as pleasant to hear as music; now and then there was a manly ring in it which thrilled his listeners. ...
— In the Midst of Alarms • Robert Barr

... it here, slowly but surely," he reported. "It is going to roll under us just about where you are.... Now it has gone past my line of sight." And a moment later, in the same drawling monotone: "They have lighted the fuse, but there is a good long string of it to burn through. Take your time—" then, with a sudden failure in the monotone: "No, by Jove! you can't take your time! The fire is jumping across the ...
— Empire Builders • Francis Lynde

... think I never knew!" went on the Toad in a dreamy monotone. "All those wasted years that lie behind me, I never knew, never even dreamt! But now—but now that I know, now that I fully realise! O what a flowery track lies spread before me, henceforth! What ...
— The Wind in the Willows • Kenneth Grahame

... trout were swarming, leaping for the tiny winged creatures that drifted across the dusky water. And as I sat there I became aware of sounds like voices; and at first, seeing no one, I thought the noises came from the low bubbling monotone of the stream. Then I heard a voice murmuring: "I will do what you ask me—I will ...
— The Maid-At-Arms • Robert W. Chambers

... bells could not tell, if you would only give them time enough. We have only one chime, for musical purposes, in the town. But, without attempting tunes, only give the bells the Morse alphabet, and every bell in Boston might chant in monotone the words of "Hail Columbia" at length, every Fourth of July. Indeed, if Mr. Barnard should report any day that a discouraged 'prentice-boy had left town for his country home, all the bells could instantly be set to work to speak ...
— If, Yes and Perhaps - Four Possibilities and Six Exaggerations with Some Bits of Fact • Edward Everett Hale

... light keeper's cottage were ablaze as they drew near. Overhead the great stream of radiance from the lantern in the tower shot far out. There was almost no wind, and the grumble of the surf at the foot of the bluff was a steady bass monotone. ...
— Galusha the Magnificent • Joseph C. Lincoln

... the fortune of John Tullis, who had been pushed forward by the wide-eyed Prince. In a cackling monotone she rambled through a supposititious history of his past, for the chief part so unintelligible that even he could not gainsay the statements. Later, she bent her piercing eyes upon the Prince and refused to read his future, shrilly ...
— Truxton King - A Story of Graustark • George Barr McCutcheon

... shook the tangle of unkempt, black hair away from her moonlike face, and began talking in a soft monotone, her voice now and then rising to ...
— Good Indian • B. M. Bower

... him. He could feel her and hear her movement. Water was trickling over his face. Then he heard a voice, close over him, saying something in a sobbing monotone which he could ...
— The Flaming Forest • James Oliver Curwood

... after that except a sort of monotone voice and something about people talking about me because I had accepted Whythe's attentions when everybody knew—I didn't hear what everybody knew, and not until I did hear a sound at the door did I wake up good, and then I jumped as if shot and asked her, half-asleep, if she ...
— Kitty Canary • Kate Langley Bosher

... and thus forget how pretty she had been at her best. After a time, finding that the more he tried to cheer her, the more brokenly she wept, he grew silent, only stroking her head, while the summer sounds came in through the window: the mill-whir of locusts, the small monotone of distant farm-bells, the laughter of children in the street, and the gay arias of a mocking-bird singing in the open window of the next house. So they sat together through the long, still afternoon of the ...
— The Two Vanrevels • Booth Tarkington

... landing-place; now lost to sight as a piece of broken, overhanging ground intervened, now emerging suddenly nearer; and overhead the great church bell, with its mediaeval inscription, familiar to the vicar, if to no one else who heard it, I to the grave do summon all, kept on its heavy booming monotone, with which no other sound from land or sea, near or distant, intermingled, except the cackle of the geese on some far-away farm on the moors, as they were coming home to roost; and that one noise from so great a distance seemed only to deepen the stillness. ...
— Sylvia's Lovers, Vol. I • Elizabeth Gaskell

... inspiration that Dubufe painted the accessory panels in monotone. In that on the right, a dismal sky, filled with rolling clouds and sad presaging ravens flying, over-shadows the outcast, seated on a rock in an attitude of listless dejection, with the swine feeding at his feet. In the panel on the left he is seen in the close embrace of his ...
— The Aldine, Vol. 5, No. 1., January, 1872 - A Typographic Art Journal • Various

... three lassoes. Kitty slowly gathered her lissom body in a ball and lay panting, with the same brave wildfire in her eyes. Jones stroked her black-tipped ears and ran his hand down her glossy fur. All the time he had kept up a low monotone, talking to her in the strange language he used toward animals. Then he rose ...
— The Last of the Plainsmen • Zane Grey

... did not seem to affect the course of things at all. The voice, completely unconscious of the aversion it aroused in the invisible listener, continued its dreary, expressionless monotone. ...
— One Day - A sequel to 'Three Weeks' • Anonymous

... a low monotone relating how he had returned to La Robe Noire with the additional ransom demanded by Le Grand Diable. The "pig Sioux, more gluttonous than the wolverine, more treacherous than the mountain cat," had come out to receive them with hootings. ...
— Lords of the North • A. C. Laut

... high tree-tops, or through low bushes, laving one's face and hands so gently, this balmy-bright noon, the coolest for a long time, (Sept. 2)—I will not call it sighing, for to me it is always a firm, sane, cheery expression, through a monotone, giving many varieties, or swift or slow, or dense or delicate. The wind in the patch of pine woods off there—how sibilant. Or at sea, I can imagine it this moment, tossing the waves, with spirits of foam ...
— Complete Prose Works - Specimen Days and Collect, November Boughs and Goodbye My Fancy • Walt Whitman

... great ships were more than seven hundred men, their eyes lighted with the fire of hatred, their faces blackened with powder or made ghastly by streaks of blood. Cries of pain, yells of rage, prayers, and curses rose shrill above the thunderous monotone of the cannonade. Both ships were on fire; and the black smoke of the conflagration, mingled with the gray gunpowder smoke, and lighted up by the red flashes of the cannonade, added to the terrible ...
— The Naval History of the United States - Volume 1 (of 2) • Willis J. Abbot

... of this night. Franklin, with his kite, looked out upon the consummation of what he dreamt of when he drew lightning from the summer cloud. For two hours the "White City" blossomed in new beauty. The great basin was bathed in a flood of fairy moonlight. Outside the peristyle the lake beat its monotone against the walls. On the plaza the great orchestra of more than 100 men played patriotic music, and the people were filled and lifted with ...
— The Adventures of Uncle Jeremiah and Family at the Great Fair - Their Observations and Triumphs • Charles McCellan Stevens (AKA 'Quondam')

... devotion to the Church. As was but natural in the circumstances, there followed an application to local politics. They were there, he informed his hearers (as the old lattices, shaken by the gale, rattled their accompaniment to his monotone) in the character of Englishmen; but he had to notice that to the existing rulers of England they owed no obedience. The so-called Parliament which had judged and murdered the late lamented Monarch, and which now claimed the right of ruling in his stead, was ...
— St George's Cross • H. G. Keene

... proposed to stay. She looked the latest thing evolved by the art of man. Her clothes were the prevailing fantastic creation, and yet, on her, they were not illogical. They were the plumage of an eccentric bird hatched to look that way. Her face, in its sandy monotone of color, fitted the art of her wonderful and yet not too noticeable hat, and her gloves and veil were the last word of style. Amelia had begun making herself, Raven used to think, long before God stopped making her. As a girl, she had gone ...
— Old Crow • Alice Brown

... dipped into the green meadow. Stafford talked of battles and marches, but he spoke in a monotone, distrait and careless, as of a day-dreaming scholar reciting his lesson. Such as it was, the recital lasted across the meadow, into the wood, yet lit by yellow light, a place itself for day dreams. "No. I did not see him fall. He was leading an infantry regiment. He was ...
— The Long Roll • Mary Johnston

... its throat and its note ceased with the bursting of a bubble, there, held fixedly by living coral, the dead shell could not choose but whistle. So I left it to its wayward pipings, happy to have been the sole auditor to a purely natural, albeit mechanical, monotone. Upon such an instrument did the heavenly maid beguile the time when she was yet uncouthly young—at the hoydenish age when men also cajoled her with clicking sticks and the beating of hollow logs, and music was but ...
— My Tropic Isle • E J Banfield

... a fire of cattle chips; Coffee made of green-scummed water, Nectar to his thirsty lips. On the ground he spread his blanket And reclining there alone, Heard the swiftly sweeping breezes Sing in dreary monotone Strange wild anthems, weird and lonesome, Like lost spirits floating by, While afar in broken measure ...
— Nancy MacIntyre • Lester Shepard Parker

... landed. They crossed the valley together, and the girl, who had seen little of industrial activity, became interested when at her father's desire they followed Alton into the mill. A cloud of pungent smoke hung about it, and the steady pounding of an engine jarred through the monotone of the river, which was low just then, while there was a pleasant fragrance in the open-sided building where brawny men moved amidst the whirling dust with the precision of the machines they handled. Alice Deringham could ...
— Alton of Somasco • Harold Bindloss

... negro carriers may be heard at all hours, in couples, engaged in the transportation of clove-bags, boxes of merchandise, &c., from store to "godown" and from "go-down" to the beach, singing a kind of monotone chant for the encouragement of each other, and for the guiding of their pace as they shuffle through the streets with bare feet. You may recognise these men readily, before long, as old acquaintances, by the consistency with which they sing the tunes ...
— How I Found Livingstone • Sir Henry M. Stanley

... he stood in his stall in his night shoes and black habit and cropped head, propped on his misericorde, with the great pages open before him, thumbed and greasy at their corners, from which he was repeating in a loud monotone formula after formula that had had time to grow familiar from repetition, but not yet sweet from associations—here he stood with heavy eyelids after his short sleep, his feet aching and hot, and ...
— The King's Achievement • Robert Hugh Benson

... gesture of some one who is squatting in an angle. It is an ambulance man on guard, whose monotone says to each arrival, "Take the mud off your boots before going in." So you stumble into an accumulating pile of mud; it entangles you at the foot of the steps on ...
— Under Fire - The Story of a Squad • Henri Barbusse

... central committee, and what they feel like on the outside, then politics, instead of a burden and a reproach, becomes a pleasing duty, a joyous occasion and a picnic to those whose lives might otherwise be a dreary monotone. ...
— Remarks • Bill Nye

... whispered, still standing very straight in the middle of the doorway. She was not looking at the inert thing on the walk below, but into her father's eyes. He did not, could not answer. He seemed frozen stiff. She went on in the same dull, whispered monotone. "I begged him to let me come alone. I begged him to let me see you first. But he would come. He brought me all the way from the West and he—he was not afraid of you. You have done what you said you would do. You did ...
— Quill's Window • George Barr McCutcheon

... "There was a man in Paris, a friend of the manager. He heard me sing once. He knew I wanted to take up a profession, and he offered to train me for nothing, and bring me out on the stage. I was to sing those queer, dramatic, half-monotone songs in which one almost speaks the words. He meant to write them specially for me, and I was to wear an oriental costume. He said that every other voice would sound fade ...
— The Hippodrome • Rachel Hayward

... story of the great battle, the frantic effort against combined Europe of the crippled French, the defection of the Saxons in the midst of the fight, the final driving of Napoleon across the Elster, the death of Poniatowski and the retreat to France. His voice was a deep, sonorous monotone and every syllable was caught eagerly by his auditors. They and the speaker were thoroughly at one in their intense German feeling. It was a celebration of triumph of the Fatherland. The significance of it all was not apparent, that sunny spring morning, ...
— The Last Leaf - Observations, during Seventy-Five Years, of Men and Events in America - and Europe • James Kendall Hosmer

... jailer and as Brotherton came up to bid Grant good-night, Brotherton felt a piece of paper slip into his hands, when he shook hands with Grant. "Don't let it leave your pocket until you see me again," said Grant in a monotone, that no one noticed. ...
— In the Heart of a Fool • William Allen White

... the oak is grown Which all winds visit on the lea, While that which lists the monotone Of the long blast that sweeps the sea, And answers to its ...
— The Mistress of the Manse • J. G. Holland

... petty duties of a life apart and lone, Till the slow years wrought a music in its dreary monotone. ...
— Complete Poetical Works of Bret Harte • Bret Harte

... a mere redness in the curdling fleecy haze; the weltering seas rose and fell in broad sheets of burnished silver, the monotone of their music followed them, a cool salt wind blew over them and freshened them for storm. Flor rose on her arm and looked back,—the breeze roused her; pain and fear and hope rose with her and looked back too. Eager, feverish, fierce, recollecting and ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 16, No. 96, October 1865 • Various

... Pourquoi ne s'est-il pas contente d'une saison?" Princess Metternich replied, "Que probablement en les composant Haydn s'est mis en quatre." "La moitie m'aurait suffi," said Auber; "pour moi, elles sont toutes mon automne." (monotone). ...
— In the Courts of Memory 1858-1875. • L. de Hegermann-Lindencrone

... house was just as dark and gloomy as it was without, and as the two visitors entered, a voice came from out the shadows, and said, in a curious monotone and with strange irrelevance: ...
— The Nest of the Sparrowhawk • Baroness Orczy

... l'ombre qui les couronne, M'enchainent tout le jour sur les bords des ruisseaux; Comme un enfant berce par un chant monotone, Mon ame s'assoupit ...
— French Lyrics • Arthur Graves Canfield

... their tone! For every sound that floats From the rust within their throats is a groan. And the people—ah, the people— They that dwell up in the steeple, all alone! And who tolling, tolling, tolling, in that muffled monotone, Feel a glory in so rolling on the human heart a stone— They are neither man nor woman— They are neither brute nor human—they are Ghouls: And their king it is who tolls; And he rolls, rolls, rolls, rolls a paean from the bells! And his merry bosom swells ...
— Assimilative Memory - or, How to Attend and Never Forget • Marcus Dwight Larrowe (AKA Prof. A. Loisette)

... ended his husky monotone in a querulous entreaty. "I need a little whiskey to keep me going. Tell her, won't you?—to let me have a little drink. My regular allowance was a pint a day, and I haven't had a drop for four weeks. Your Chicago whiskey is rotten bad, though, I tell you. I just ...
— The Web of Life • Robert Herrick

... refused to be comforted. He wished himself back, a participator in the conflicts of civilisation, and was fain to cover his face—there was no wall to which to turn—and fancy that the most dismal sound in the universe was the surly monotone the north-easter harped on the beach. We reposed that night among the camp equipment, the sick man caring for naught in his physical ...
— The Confessions of a Beachcomber • E J Banfield

... the pitch alternates so unexpectedly between an "unearthly treble and a preternatural bass" that a boy can usually sing only in monotone, if, with courage proof against the ridicule occasioned by his uncontrollable vocal antics, he tries to join in. In those cases, where the larynx undergoes a slow change in growth, it is often possible for the boy to sing all through ...
— The Child-Voice in Singing • Francis E. Howard

... a sad monotone if every thing in creation resembled each other; there would be no harmony. But walk in, Mr. Jerrold, my uncle expects you," said May, throwing ...
— May Brooke • Anna H. Dorsey

... the officer, rolled out this section in a sonorous monotone, without stops, like a clerk of the court. It was his pride to know by heart all the acts relating to his department, and to bring them down upon any obstinate head that he wished to crush. Ginx's head, however, was impervious to an act of parliament. ...
— Ginx's Baby • Edward Jenkins

... passed, but we all sat silent and motionless. Through the open windows came a low, sweet monotone of the wind from the shadowing maples, sometimes swelling into a great depth of sound, and again dying to a whisper, and the effect seemed finer than that of the most skilfully touched organ. Occasionally an irascible humble-bee would dart in, and, after a moment of motionless poise, would ...
— A Day Of Fate • E. P. Roe

... rites of the Bororos were singular. On the death of a man, a chorus of moans began and tears were shed in profusion, while some one sang for several days the praises of the defunct in a melancholy monotone. The body was covered for two entire days, during which all articles that belonged to the deceased, such as bow and arrows, pots, and musical instruments, were smashed or destroyed. The debris was stored behind a screen ...
— Across Unknown South America • Arnold Henry Savage Landor

... pulsating, penetrating, the murmur of the great hotel came to his ears; the drone of indistinguishable voices, the pattering footsteps of bell-boys and habitues, the purr of the elevator as it moved from floor to floor, the click of the gate as it stopped at his own level, the renewed monotone as ...
— Ben Blair - The Story of a Plainsman • Will Lillibridge

... who gave the history lectures, talked in a bass monotone and never seemed to pause for breath. His words came in a slow steady stream that never rose nor fell nor paused—until the bell rang. The men in the back of the room slept. Hugh was seated near the front; so he drew pictures in his note-book. The English instructor talked about ...
— The Plastic Age • Percy Marks

... lits, l'ombre qui les couronne, M'enchanent tout le jour sur les bords des ruisseaux; Comme un enfant berc par un chant monotone, Mon me s'assoupit au ...
— French Lyrics • Arthur Graves Canfield

... doorway, but so heavily recessed in the thick walls that it preserved seclusion, a sitting-room, and an alcoved bedroom with deep embrasured windows that however excluded the unwinking sunlight and kept an even monotone of shade. ...
— Selected Stories • Bret Harte

... playing youngster had silently disappeared from the streets. The doorsteps were deserted—save where across the way a young man and maiden sat in the gloaming, conversing in low monotone. ...
— Little Journeys to the Homes of the Great, Vol. 1 of 14 - Little Journeys to the Homes of Good Men and Great • Elbert Hubbard

... depths below, and a great misery was written upon her handsome features. I dreamed that I was hurrying by the spot where she was standing, eager to reach the other side unobserved by her. As I stole with noiseless tread behind her, I heard her talking to the waters in a slow and humdrum monotone: ...
— The Doctor's Daughter • "Vera"

... ability that everyone was astonished and pleased. So that difficulty ended there. Then for the first time, aroused by the excitement of the occasion, he spoke in that tenor intonation of voice that ultimately settled down into that clear, shrill monotone style that afterwards characterized his public speaking, and enabled his audience, however large, to hear distinctly the lowest sound of his voice." Mr. Arnold says that Lincoln's reply to Dr. Early was "often spoken of as exhibiting wonderful ability, and a crushing power of ...
— The Every-day Life of Abraham Lincoln • Francis Fisher Browne

... grassy brow to an ice-cold spring that gushes out of the rock under a pine; or lying idly on the soft meadow in the cool shade of the plane, is lulled by the whispering west wind through the branches, the monotone of the cicalas, the faint sound of a far-off shepherd's pipe floating down the hills; or looking up into the heart of the oak, sees the dim green roof, layer upon layer, mount and spread and shut out the sky.[2] Or the citizen, leaving the glare of town, spends a country holiday on strewn willow-boughs ...
— Select Epigrams from the Greek Anthology • J. W. Mackail

... in a low monotone; "how narrow and limited is all that you know compared to what there is surely up there. Yes, if I did not answer you it was because I was thinking of you, and I was filled with grief. You must not ...
— Doctor Pascal • Emile Zola

... decidedly not enough for the dinner itself. He did not see his man at first, and when he did the man did not see him. Van Bibber watched him stop three gentlemen, two of whom gave him some money, and then the Object approached Van Bibber and repeated his sad tale in a monotone. He evidently did not recognize Van Bibber, and the clubman gave him a half-dollar and walked away, feeling that the man must surely have enough by this time with which to get something to eat, if ...
— Van Bibber and Others • Richard Harding Davis

... poetry of Byron and of Poe, and there is the psychic effect of color. The rhythm in certain of their poems, with the arrangement of word-sound, produces the saddest music possible, I think, to the soul of man—a prevailing monotone so measured as to result in an effect decidedly strange and quite indescribable. But the real peculiarity of their poetry—and in this Poe excels Byron—is a psychic effect the same as that which remains after ...
— A Strange Discovery • Charles Romyn Dake

... organ struck up, and every person in the great church every man, woman, and child—joined in the swinging rhythm of verse after verse, as if they could never tire, of "The Old-Time Religion." It is a simple melody—barely more than a single line of almost monotone music: ...
— Acres of Diamonds • Russell H. Conwell

... demand, sung in a chanting kind of monotone, and very seldom refused. A boy is chosen to knock at the farm door and rouse the inmates, it being considered unlucky for the household if a girl first ...
— Garthowen - A Story of a Welsh Homestead • Allen Raine

... overtook one she straightway became as one of God's own ministering spirits—an angel of strength and consolation. Always more eager, however, that souls should grow than that pain should cease. Volumes could be made of her letters to friends in sorrow. One tender monotone steals through them all,— ...
— The Life and Letters of Elizabeth Prentiss • George L. Prentiss

... some such object, in his hand, and putting both hands behind his back, the friend began to bob his head and shoulders up and down in an idiotic fashion, at the same time chanting in a sing-song monotone, "Ho yo, yo ho, hi ya yoho!" for a considerable length of time, while Mozwa staked his blanket, a fine thick green one, purchased at Great Bear Lake. We forget the friend's stake, but it was probably supposed to be ...
— The Walrus Hunters - A Romance of the Realms of Ice • R.M. Ballantyne

... the change it seemed to effect in her. Her pale blue eyes, made paler by tears, cleared and brightened under their swollen lids like wiped steel; the lines of her depressed mouth straightened and became firm. Her voice had lost its hopeless monotone. ...
— A Protegee of Jack Hamlin's and Other Stories • Bret Harte

... talked on in the monotone in which Romany is generally spoken, like an Indian song, while, like an Indian drum, the rain pattered an accompaniment on the tightly drawn tent. Those who live in cities, and who are always realizing self, and thinking how they think, and are while awake ...
— The Gypsies • Charles G. Leland

... neighborhood for a gulp or two at their fountains of culture. Some day, naturally, we'll be more alike, and have more in common. The stronger colors will fade out of the newer fabric and we'll merge into a more inoffensive monotone of respectability. Our Navajo-blanket audacities will tone down to wall-tapestry sedateness—but not too, too soon, ...
— The Prairie Mother • Arthur Stringer

... shone warmer, and the chickens caw-cawed feebly. The colts whinnied, and a couple of dogs rolled and tumbled in wild frolic, while the voice of the preacher sounded dolefully or in humming monotone. ...
— Other Main-Travelled Roads • Hamlin Garland

... here," she spoke in an odd, weary monotone, as if she were thinking aloud. "This morning ... I think, if Norah had left anything in the bottle ... ...
— Port O' Gold • Louis John Stellman

... they were out of sight over the ridge, Malcom Porter had turned on his heel and started back toward the cluster of buildings. He was swearing vilely in a rumbling monotone, and had apparently forgotten ...
— By Proxy • Gordon Randall Garrett

... of wonderland. The land of mystic splendor. Region of bubbling caldron and boiling pool with fretted rims, rivaling the coral in delicacy of texture and the rainbow in variety of color; of steaming funnels exhaling into the etherine atmosphere in calm, unruffled monotone and paroxysmal ejection, vast clouds of fleecy vapor from the underground furnaces of the God of Nature; sylvan parkland, where amidst the unsullied freshness of flower-strewn valley and bountiful woodland, the native fauna of the land browse ...
— My Native Land • James Cox

... us walk toward the simple stone seat, which some shepherd boy has erected under yon silvery-stemmed birch tree, where the sound of the waterfall comes only in a pleasant monotone, and where the most romantic part of old Scotland is spread beneath our feet. There you see the eternal foam of the torrent, without being distracted with its roar; and you can trace the course of the stream till it terminates in yon clear and pellucid pool at the foot of the hill, ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland, Volume 2 - Historical, Traditional, and Imaginative • Alexander Leighton

... anything about the quarrel; she feared to reopen it. She talked mainly of old times in a gentle monotone of reminiscence, while he listened, looking up into her ...
— Main-Travelled Roads • Hamlin Garland

... answered Merrihew. He stuffed his pockets with cigars, slammed the boxes into the case, and locked them up. He collected his belongings and repacked the other case, keeping up a rumbling monotone as he did so. "Oh, ...
— The Lure of the Mask • Harold MacGrath



Words linked to "Monotone" :   maths, modulation, nonmonotonic, musical note, unmodulated, pitch contour, increasing monotonic, mathematics, droning, tone, flat, note, math, intonation, drone, decreasing monotonic



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