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Cleverness   Listen
noun
Cleverness  n.  The quality of being clever; skill; dexterity; adroitness.
Synonyms: See Ingenuity.






Collaborative International Dictionary of English 0.48








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"Cleverness" Quotes from Famous Books



... I mean is: if any one would make a collection of all the vilest and most damaging slanders ever vented against Pythagoras—things whose truth I would not accept for a moment—, the sum of them would not come within measurable distance of Alexander's cleverness. You are to set your imagination to work and conceive a temperament curiously compounded of falsehood, trickery, perjury, cunning; it is versatile, audacious, adventurous, yet dogged in execution; ...
— Works, V2 • Lucian of Samosata

... the buffet of a large restaurant on the Boulevard Sebastopol. She was widely known for her cleverness and her ...
— Tales of Two Countries • Alexander Kielland

... ago; she had worked then with pleasure and interest, and taken examinations with easy triumph. As Kay did now at Cambridge, only more so, because she had been cleverer than Kay. She was a vain creature, and had believed that cleverness of hers to be unimpaired by life, until she came to try. She supposed that if she had spent her married life in head work, her head would never have lost the trick of it. But she hadn't. She had spent it on Rodney and Gerda and Kay, and the interesting, amusing life led by the wife of a ...
— Dangerous Ages • Rose Macaulay

... of the four bombs and their immediate consignment to the sea saved the ship from being blown to bits. With another hour to spare, it is more than probable the remaining four would have been found, notwithstanding the amazing cleverness with which they were hidden, so thorough and so dogged was the search. Confusion, terror, stupefaction and finally panic followed the successive blasts. The decks were strewn with people prostrated by the violent upheavals, and many there were who never got up again. Stunned, dazed, ...
— West Wind Drift • George Barr McCutcheon

... the side like a monkey for cleverness, and as soon as he saw what was doing, "So ho, mates!" says ...
— Treasure Island • Robert Louis Stevenson

... to include more intricate tricks than a performing elephant and a troupe of circus dogs could hope to learn in a lifetime. They became sworn chums. Dick talked to Lass as if she were human. She amazed the enraptured boy by her cleverness and spirits. His initiation to the dog-masters' guild ...
— Bruce • Albert Payson Terhune

... entertaining, in eating, could be saved by a sensible economy, with no appreciable loss in enjoyment. We must not forget that everything we consume has been produced by the labor and time of others. What fortune, or our own cleverness, has put into our hands that we do not need for making fair and free our own lives, and the lives of those dependent upon us, we should pass on to those whose need is greater than ours. Is it wrong to gamble, bet, or speculate? A corollary to our discussion of the duties appertaining ...
— Problems of Conduct • Durant Drake

... beginning to chatter about the friendship existing between a Cabinet Minister and a beautiful Hungarian lady of title, etc., etc. The fact of it is that Brott is in deadly earnest. He gives himself away every time. If Lucille has not lost old cleverness she will be able to twist him ...
— The Yellow Crayon • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... dangerous in his rude bulk and strength, the knitted brute power that the sea and his hard life had given him; to Guthrie, Claud was dangerous in the highbred beauty and finish of his person, clothes and manners, and in the astounding "cleverness" that he displayed. Each man feared the force of those qualities which he lacked himself, and ...
— Sisters • Ada Cambridge

... children who to your eyes seem so perfect, and have no inclination to act as inquisitors over their little talents and accomplishments. Spare your friends the thousand-and-one anecdotes of the extraordinary cleverness, vivacity, or piety of the little people you love so blindly: do not excoriate their ears by making them listen to recitations or the strumming of sonatos; or weary their eyes by requesting them to watch the leaping and kicking of small stick-like legs.' You only render your boys and girls conceited, ...
— Chambers's Edinburgh Journal, No. 462 - Volume 18, New Series, November 6, 1852 • Various

... Captain Len Guy would not spare him if he tried to get up insubordination amongst his comrades. It was a pity that his bad instincts had induced him to play such a part, for his strength, skill, and cleverness made him a very valuable man, and he had never proved more ...
— An Antarctic Mystery • Jules Verne

... had the palm of cleverness conceded to her ever since she could recollect, when she read better at three years old than her sister at five, and ever after, through the days of education, had enjoyed, and excelled in, the studies that were a toil to Grace. Subsequently, ...
— The Clever Woman of the Family • Charlotte M. Yonge

... Your cleverness is in vain, Messieurs Protectionists, it is useless to lower your tone, to boast of your latent generosity, or to deceive your opponents by sentiment. You cannot prevent logic from ...
— Sophisms of the Protectionists • Frederic Bastiat

... companions! Many and many a time had the younger man come down to these lodgings, with all his troubles and wild impulses and pangs of contrition ready to be revealed; and then Ingram, concealing the liking he had for the lad's generous waywardness, his brilliant and facile cleverness and his dashes of honest self-depreciation, would gravely lecture him and put him right and send him off comforted. Frank Lavender had changed much since then. The handsome boy had grown into a man of the world; there was less self-revelation in his manner, and he ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science, Vol. 12, No. 32, November, 1873 • Various

... Rankin. "Why, he's a very fiend of cleverness when it comes to a case of this kind. We're not in the same class with him. He's a fancy fellow—just the Record kind. You're sure you didn't tell him anything else, Mr. Lester?" he added anxiously. "Godfrey's capable of getting a story out of ...
— The Holladay Case - A Tale • Burton E. Stevenson

... you have no business whatever to have. I suppose this will account for the correctness of your work during the past half-year? Do you feel very proud of your performance," he added, sneeringly, "when none of it was your own labour or cleverness?" ...
— Wilton School - or, Harry Campbell's Revenge • Fred E. Weatherly

... in his work: there, be sure, you have him to the inmost. All that he likes, all that he sees,—all that he can do,—his imagination, his affections, his perseverance, his impatience, his clumsiness, cleverness, everything is there. If the work is a cobweb, you know it was made by a spider; if a honeycomb, by a bee; a worm-cast is thrown up by a worm, and a nest wreathed by a bird; and a house built by a man, worthily, if he is worthy, and ...
— Selections From the Works of John Ruskin • John Ruskin

... themselves to my memory, and perhaps may do so to some of yours. I may say farther, that some whose change from childhood to manhood had been, in St. Paul's sense of the terms, the most remarkably advanced, were so far from being distinguished for their cleverness or proficiency in their school-work, that it would almost seem as if their only remaining childishness had been displayed there. What I mean, therefore, by the change from childhood to manhood, is altogether distinct from a premature advance in ...
— The Christian Life - Its Course, Its Hindrances, And Its Helps • Thomas Arnold

... you admit the point. As for cleverness it isn't that I've so much of that, but I use what I've got. Well, have you ...
— Plays of Near & Far • Lord Dunsany

... nothing to do. Therefore, I suppose she went in for the torturing business as a profession. Her Frenchmen did not mind; that was the secret of her charm with them— so clever, they called her, but it nearly killed me, her cleverness. I grew pale and worn—sleep—I never slept. All my life I had lived without natural affection, and now I was pouring forth upon this woman the love I might have rendered friends, sister, brother, mother, as well as the passion of a young man. I say to you ...
— Crowded Out! and Other Sketches • Susie F. Harrison

... the men as well, that this was only the lull before the storm. Their enemy was desperate and resourceful, and though the cleverness of the American engineers had carried through the mine operation without detection, it was certain that the ...
— Army Boys in the French Trenches • Homer Randall

... off of his shoulders,—meet it with a smile and some swaggering comment. And I knew as well that, if by any hook or crook he could prevent the contract from being carried out, he would do it with the devil's cleverness. ...
— Dwellers in the Hills • Melville Davisson Post

... cleverness is considered, are singularly ignorant of the habits, institutions, and civilization of other countries. This is in part owing to their being little addicted to travelling. Their commercial enterprise is not great; for though we occasionally ...
— Recollections of Europe • J. Fenimore Cooper

... than anybody, at him and at herself. It was a revelation to her, his cleverness, his brilliant social gift. She was only intimate with one kind of cleverness, the kind that feeds itself on lectures and on books. She had not thought of Walter as clever. She had only thought of him as good. ...
— The Helpmate • May Sinclair

... and little or no moral sense, who might be made a tool of. It seems no one at New York was taken in by him, but having wandered over to London, the booksellers found him a good subject for a book, and some hack there, with considerable cleverness, made him a pack-horse for carrying a load of stuff about America's treatment of the Indians. It was called a "captivity," and he was made to play the part of an adventurer among the Indians—somewhat after the manner of John Tanner. C. reviewed the book, on our route and at the Prairie, for the ...
— Personal Memoirs Of A Residence Of Thirty Years With The Indian Tribes On The American Frontiers • Henry Rowe Schoolcraft

... justice. Every people, it is true, have resorted to the habit of mutilating or changing in their oaths the letters which form the Creator's name; but we question if any have surpassed the Irish in the cleverness with which they accomplish it. Mock oaths are habitual to Irishmen in ordinary conversation; but the use of any or all of them is not considered to constitute an oath: on the contrary, they are in the mouths of many who would not, except upon a very solemn occasion indeed, swear by the name of ...
— Phil Purcel, The Pig-Driver; The Geography Of An Irish Oath; The Lianhan Shee • William Carleton

... Otto chattered excitedly. He told of the dog, dilating on its cleverness, but passing politely over the manner of its return. Now and then Hedwig glanced at Nikky, when he was not looking, and always, when they dared, the young soldier's eyes ...
— Long Live the King • Mary Roberts Rinehart

... a while even the smartest people are caught napping. Yes, Sir, that does happen. They will be careless sometimes. It was just so with Old Granny Fox. With all her smartness and cleverness and wisdom she grew careless, and all the smartness and cleverness and wisdom in the world is useless if the ...
— Old Granny Fox • Thornton W. Burgess

... Hamlet's cleverness in simulating madness is dwelt upon in the old story. See 'Hystorie of ...
— The Tragedie of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark - A Study with the Text of the Folio of 1623 • George MacDonald

... the stamp of the culture of the Nicolai school. Utterly unsympathetic, narrow beyond the dreams of the narrowest of modern schoolmasters, they were frankly, virulently hostile to any one in whom they perceived—as they always did perceive with the unerring instinct of stupidity to detect cleverness—the smallest trace of originality of character, thought or outlook on life. As a rule they seem to have been successful in achieving their aim. An old German friend of mine told me he had calculated that the Nicolai school turned out in ten years more complete, complacent blockheads ...
— Richard Wagner - Composer of Operas • John F. Runciman

... which had been received from noted societies and eminent men and women in the United States and Europe.[116] The New York Sun said: "In ordinary hands this task would have been dull enough, but Miss Anthony enlivened it with her wit and cleverness and made a success of it." It may be truly said that not one woman in that audience, not even Mrs. Stanton herself, was prouder or happier than Miss Anthony over ...
— The Life and Work of Susan B. Anthony (Volume 2 of 2) • Ida Husted Harper

... is dominated by three portraits by Antonio Mancini, of unusual cleverness and very fine psychological characterization. Mancini's work grows on one. While seeming at first rather loose and superficial, these portraits disclose on more intimate study a fine constructive quality. They are not particularly interesting in colour; as a matter of fact they are very monochromatic. ...
— The Galleries of the Exposition • Eugen Neuhaus

... altogether wise. Hitherto we fooled her for all her cleverness. Her price of silence was education in our mysteries, and we have made ...
— Caves of Terror • Talbot Mundy

... entertaining and dramatic pages of Headley, with their impassioned, stirring pictures of war and heroism, than the tame, tedious biographies that then filled the libraries. Headley's History of the War of 1812 immediately preceded his entrance to the Assembly in 1854, where his cleverness attracted the attention of his party and led to his selection for secretary of state. George F. Comstock, now in his forty-first year, had already won an enviable reputation at the Onondaga bar. Like Headley he was a graduate of Union College. In 1847, Governor ...
— A Political History of the State of New York, Volumes 1-3 • DeAlva Stanwood Alexander

... ought to say, not chiefly, to be assimilated through our brains. The best preparation for the doing of the will of God and the progressive entering into His mind, is an obedient life. Purity of character will carry us farther on this path than cleverness of brains. Our Lord's own rule is: He that doeth the will shall know of the doctrine. In other words, we understand the mind of God and attain to the illumination of the conscience, through sympathetic response to the will ...
— Our Lady Saint Mary • J. G. H. Barry

... before they found themselves in a crowd of people, all going toward the castle ruin, for there, they told Hulda, the pedlar, the famous pedlar from the north, who sold such fine wares, was going to perform some feats of jugglery of most surprising cleverness. ...
— Wonder-Box Tales • Jean Ingelow

... think——Of course as our pastor said once, at Baptist Church——By the way, we haven't seen you there yet, and of course your husband was raised up a Baptist, and I do hope he won't drift away from the fold, of course we all know there isn't anything, not cleverness or gifts of gold or anything, that can make up for humility and the inward grace and they can say what they want to about the P. E. church, but of course there's no church that has more history or has stayed by ...
— Main Street • Sinclair Lewis

... her to wind, but he made up to me for the disappointment that evening by sitting by me while I pinned out my few but far from rare captures, taking great pleasure in holding the pins for me, and praising what he called my cleverness in ...
— Nat the Naturalist - A Boy's Adventures in the Eastern Seas • G. Manville Fenn

... can never prosper. If ever there was a woman fitted to meet the difficulty and danger which threatened them, it was Mrs. Campbell, for she had courage and presence of mind, joined to activity and cleverness. ...
— The Settlers in Canada • Frederick Marryat

... quietly into the house, licks the lips of the sick man and eats the food which has been prepared for him. The sick man soon gets worse and dies. They say it is very difficult to catch the cat, as it has all the nimbleness of its nature and the cleverness of a bhut. However, they sometimes succeed, and then something wonderful happens. The woman out of whom the cat has come remains insensible, as it were in a state of temporary death, until the cat re-enters her body. Any wound inflicted on the cat will be inflicted on her; if they ...
— The Tribes and Castes of the Central Provinces of India - Volume IV of IV - Kumhar-Yemkala • R.V. Russell

... Bates, with a sympathetic thoughtfulness; "that's bad—bad. I'd sooner have a boy of mine dead than a mere gentleman. And I shouldn't want him too clever, either. My Billy, before we sent him off to college, showed signs of cleverness; it worried me a good deal. He wanted to write; and there was one time when he thought he wanted to paint. Of course we couldn't allow anything like that. I was willing enough that he should be posted on the best books, and be able to tell a good painting from a bad one—to be a patron ...
— With the Procession • Henry B. Fuller

... surgeon, as you might be without derogation to your high rank, you'd be ready to faint if you saw him cut off a leg or an arm, as he would have to do every day for his livelihood; but you'd be proud of his cleverness in being able to do it. That's how I feel with regard to Ned. I tell you the truth, ma'am, I shouldn't like to see him in the ring no more than the lady of an officer in the Guards would like to see her husband in the field of battle running his sword into ...
— Cashel Byron's Profession • George Bernard Shaw

... certainly did manage it—and then went down the stone stair-way backward, as though he had been trained to be a trick donkey from his youth up. When the feat was accomplished, and he stood safely out in the canon, the expressions of love, and of congratulation upon his cleverness, which Pablo lavished upon him were enough to have turned completely a ...
— The Aztec Treasure-House • Thomas Allibone Janvier

... to the rider, reflected his admiration. "If you're in the right," he said, "I'll say it for you, Asgill, you're the match of the old one for cleverness. But do you think she'll come to it, ...
— The Wild Geese • Stanley John Weyman

... easy to them. But common caution they did not learn, because it did not seem to them either interesting or necessary. So it was often just luck that got them out of scrapes, though they always thought it was their own cleverness. ...
— Children of the Wild • Charles G. D. Roberts

... fair-haired, blue-eyed, country-looking maiden at his side, as well as the hale old rustic by whom they were attended. All three were delighted with their position, and Dick Taverner took full credit to himself for his cleverness in procuring it for them. As to pretty Gillian, nothing could please her better, for she could not only see all that was going forward, but everybody could see her—even Prince Charles himself; and she flattered ...
— The Star-Chamber, Volume 2 - An Historical Romance • W. Harrison Ainsworth

... am not nearly as strong as Malines or Morris, or the Binneys. Besides, you forget that 'the race is not always to the swift, nor the battle to the strong,' and as to cleverness, that does not consist in a superior education or a head crammed full of knowledge, but in the right and ready application of knowledge. No; I have no ambition to be a king. But it won't do for us to stand here talking, else we shall be set ...
— The Island Queen • R.M. Ballantyne

... of things then existing, a ministry could be best kept together, not by parliamentary capacity, but by social arrangements, such as his Duchess, and his Duchess alone, could carry out. She and she only would have the spirit and the money and the sort of cleverness required. In such a state of things he of course, as her husband, must be ...
— The Prime Minister • Anthony Trollope

... you from doing all this with Sir Philip? He is a baronet—a man of rank, property, connections far above yours. If you talk of intellect, he is a poet—he writes verses; which you, I take it, cannot do, with all your cleverness." ...
— Shirley • Charlotte Bronte

... Juana,[167-3] and of all the other islands, are much afraid of the inhabitants of Bohio, because they say that they eat people. The Indians relate other things, by signs, which are very wonderful; but the Admiral did not believe them. He only inferred that those of Bohio must have more cleverness and cunning to be able to capture the others, who, however, are very poor-spirited. The wind veered from N.E. to North, so the Admiral determined to leave Cuba, or Juana, which, up to this time, he had supposed to be the mainland, on account of its size, having coasted ...
— The Northmen, Columbus and Cabot, 985-1503 • Various

... had not been surprised when Duncan had mentioned Dakota as being a probable tool, for he had thought over the occurrence of the shooting in Lazette many times, and had been much impressed with Dakota's coolness and his satanic cleverness with a six-shooter, and it seemed that it would be a simple matter to arrange with him for the removal of Doubler. Yes, it had seemed simple enough when he had planned it, and when Duncan had told him that Dakota was not on ...
— The Trail to Yesterday • Charles Alden Seltzer

... the storm till it passes over. Anything I do during the time it lasts, even household work, is badly done. The brain seems to become addled for the time being, while after gratification of desire it seems to attain an additional quickness and cleverness. Perhaps this cause contributes to the small amount of intellectual and artistic work done by women, admitting their natural inferiority to men in artistic impulse. A woman whose passions are satisfied generally has her strength sapped by maternity, while her attention is drawn from ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 3 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... is, that there is so much CLEVERNESS standing betwixt me and the public . . . Richard Wagner is sixty years old and over, and one-half of the most cultivated artists of the most cultivated art-land, quoad music, still think him an absurdity. Says Schumann in ...
— The Poems of Sidney Lanier • Sidney Lanier

... not think of it particularly at the time, but it was probably owing to this utilitarian occupation that he did not again see the attractive Jess on his way out. For, with all her cleverness, ...
— The Lilac Sunbonnet • S.R. Crockett

... had of course gone long before. The man who was there was another type of Carlist altogether, and his temperament was that of a trader. He was the chief purveyor of the Legitimist armies, an honest broker of stores, and enjoyed a great reputation for cleverness. His important task kept him, of course, in France, but his young wife, whose beauty and devotion to her King were well known, represented him worthily at Headquarters, where his own appearances were extremely rare. The dissimilar but united loyalties of those two people had ...
— The Arrow of Gold - a story between two notes • Joseph Conrad

... look came into his mother's eyes and sent a glow of self-satisfaction through his whole being. The look was familiar to him and meant that his mother was annoyed by the question but pleased with his cleverness ...
— The Soul of a Child • Edwin Bjorkman

... especial cleverness, because no especial cleverness is needed, lead the reader into contempt for the amateur of Orgeres, and forgetfulness of Leverrier—and some other subject is ...
— The Book of the Damned • Charles Fort

... of our dogs that I must tell you of one, just to show that I have not altered in my devotion to our "true first friend." This dog's name was "Black," and he lived many years ago at Mistaken Cove. The tales of his beauty, his cleverness at tricks, and his endurance of difficulties are still told, but chiefly of his devotion to his master. After years of this companionship the beloved master died and was buried in the woods near his lonely little house. Black was inconsolable. ...
— Le Petit Nord - or, Annals of a Labrador Harbour • Anne Elizabeth Caldwell (MacClanahan) Grenfell and Katie Spalding

... Kara say?" said Pine, and his eyes flashed, for the idea of getting rid of Lambert in this way appealed to him. The girl was beautiful, and with her added cleverness she might be able to gain her ends, and these accomplished, would certainly place a barrier between Agnes and her cousin, since the woman would never forgive the man for ...
— Red Money • Fergus Hume

... household effects we now decided to take small lodgings in the so-called 'hinteren Escherhausern' in the Zeltweg. With great cleverness Minna had succeeded in selling the Dresden furniture to advantage, and out of the proceeds of this sale she had brought three hundred marks with her to Zurich to help towards setting up our new home. She told me that she had saved my small but very select library for me by giving it into the ...
— My Life, Volume I • Richard Wagner

... before my mother; she had taken a great dislike to Zinaida, and kept a hostile eye upon us. My father I was not so much afraid of; he seemed not to notice me. He talked little to her, but always with special cleverness and significance. I gave up working and reading; I even gave up walking about the neighbourhood and riding my horse. Like a beetle tied by the leg, I moved continually round and round my beloved ...
— The Torrents of Spring • Ivan Turgenev

... a fortnight, what with my own cleverness, and the diligence of him I had chosen for my patron, I learned to jump for the king of France, and not to jump for the good-for-nothing landlady; he taught me to curvet like a Neapolitan courser, to move in a ring like a mill horse, and other things ...
— The Exemplary Novels of Cervantes • Miguel de Cervantes Saavedra

... or alluvial, occurs only as an oxide, termed cassiterite, and yet you can well appreciate the compliment one Cornish miner pays to another whose cleverness he wishes to commend, when he says of him, "Aw, he do know tin," when you look at a representative collection of tin ores. In various shapes, from sharp-edged crystals to mammillary-shaped nuggets of wood-tin; from masses of 30 lbs. weight to a fine sand, like gunpowder, in colour black, brown, ...
— Getting Gold • J. C. F. Johnson

... and when she showed him the stranger's arrangements, or repeated to him, in a wondering, blundering way, with constant appeals to her attendant, the new tales she had heard, he used to listen with a pleased awkward amazement at his little Ermentrude's astonishing cleverness, joined sometimes with real interest, which was evinced by his inquiries of Christina. He certainly did not admire the little, slight, pale bower-maiden, but he seemed to look upon her like some ...
— The Dove in the Eagle's Nest • Charlotte M. Yonge

... but, as he always changed his name and his localities, this fact was not known officially. He was an avowed infidel, and seemed to delight in spreading his opinions among the prisoners, who were generally too willing to listen to him. If he keeps out of prison, it will be his cleverness in escaping detection and not his principles that will save him. His prison influence was most pernicious, and afforded another striking and painful illustration of the evils of indiscriminate association of ...
— Six Years in the Prisons of England • A Merchant - Anonymous

... retribution would be so swift that his friends would not be able to save him. This time his enemy would take no chances. He would be wiped out like a troublesome insect. The thing was diabolic in the simplicity of its cleverness. ...
— Mavericks • William MacLeod Raine

... to be more cautious, or it may drive him to desperate measures at once. Like most clever criminals, he may be too confident in his own cleverness and imagine that ...
— The Hound of the Baskervilles • A. Conan Doyle

... his public school and University education had been able to do for Theobald! Nevertheless for his own part he thought his letter rather a good one, and congratulated himself in particular upon his cleverness in inventing the story of a previous attachment, behind which he intended to shelter himself if Christina should complain of any lack of fervour ...
— The Way of All Flesh • Samuel Butler

... the contrivance in his pocket. He pulled out his watch. The hour, to his amazement, was nearly ten. He realized he must have lain a considerable time unconscious in the wet. Halting to wonder what cleverness might suggest as the best possible thing to be done, he somewhat grimly determined to ...
— A Husband by Proxy • Jack Steele

... "Maggie's cleverness lies in being able to pretend she understands what she knows nothing about; I have often caught ...
— Spring Days • George Moore

... followed for her prodigious transformations in the panorama of Nature. Seen from the standpoint of his great, overwhelming lie to her, the philosophy which this man had professed changed in its appearance, and that mightily. He had used his cleverness like a net to trap her, and now, though she could not prove his words untrue save in one particular, yet that crowning act of faithlessness much tended to vitiate all the beauties of imagination which had gone before it. They were ...
— Lying Prophets • Eden Phillpotts

... did them," said Challoner with dry amusement. "I can see their cleverness, but I'll admit that I think them rather a ...
— Blake's Burden • Harold Bindloss

... whole; self-interest, that great motor of the mind, had failed in his case to instruct him. He was often aghast when his sister ordered some article to be sold below cost, foreseeing the end of its fashion; later he admired her idiotically for her cleverness. He reasoned neither ill nor well; he was simply incapable of reasoning at all; but he had the sense to subordinate himself to his sister, and he did so from a consideration that was outside of the business. "She is my elder," he said. Perhaps an existence like his, always solitary, reduced ...
— The Celibates - Includes: Pierrette, The Vicar of Tours, and The Two Brothers • Honore de Balzac

... much as old people are sorry for the young, knowing the end to all their enthusiasms. It was as though he had travelled ahead, and had found out how meaningless everything was, even his clever friend's strength and cleverness. ...
— The Dark House • I. A. R. Wylie

... never conquer his own sins by arguing with himself, or by any other means, till he got to know God, and to see that God was the Lord. And when his spirit was utterly broken; when he saw himself, in spite of all his wonderful cleverness and learning, to have been a fool and blind all along, though people round him were flattering him, and running after him to hear his learning; then the old words which he learnt at his mother's knee came up in his ...
— Sermons on National Subjects • Charles Kingsley

... He, too, was silent for a long time. "They say that French cleverness..." he babbled suddenly, as though in a fever... "that's false, it always has been. Why libel French cleverness? It's simply Russian indolence, our degrading impotence to produce ideas, our revolting parasitism in the rank of nations. Ils sont tout ...
— The Possessed - or, The Devils • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... to drive an ordinary mortal crazy. The successful scenario writers, who conceive our best plays, are the real heart of this business, and the next to them in importance are the directors, or producers, who exercise marvelous cleverness in staging ...
— Aunt Jane's Nieces Out West • Edith Van Dyne

... skill, cleverness, cunning: device, trick, snare, ambuscade, plot, treachery, , AO, CP: work of art, cunning device, ...
— A Concise Anglo-Saxon Dictionary - For the Use of Students • John R. Clark Hall

... the least doubt that, though to the casual observer the majority of Coreans appear depressed and unintelligent, they are, as a matter of fact, far from stupid. I have met people in the land of Cho-sen, whose cleverness would have been conspicuous in any country, Western or otherwise. When they set their mind to learn something they never cease till their object is attained, and I can vouch for their quick comprehension, even of matters of which they have never ...
— Corea or Cho-sen • A (Arnold) Henry Savage-Landor

... ultra-violet light may have blinded Mr. Haswell, even to the recognition of his own daughter, but you can rest assured, Prescott, that the very cleverness of your scheme will penetrate the eyes of the blindfolded goddess of justice. Burnham, if you will have the kindness to summon the police, I will take all the responsibility for the ...
— The Poisoned Pen • Arthur B. Reeve

... uncle, William Pitt, with whom she remained until his death in 1806. Pitt became deeply attached to his handsome, high-spirited niece. He believed in her sincerity and affection for himself, admired her courage and cleverness, laughed at her temper, and encouraged her pride. She seems to have gained a considerable influence over her uncle, and contrived to have a finger in most of the ministerial pies. When reproached for allowing her such unreserved liberty of action in state affairs, Pitt was accustomed ...
— Little Memoirs of the Nineteenth Century • George Paston

... dressed well, talked well, and played excellent bridge. The fact of their not marrying was an eternal mystery to their friends, to their wiry, nervous little father, and their large, fat, serene mother; perhaps to themselves as well. They met life, as they saw it, with great cleverness, making it a rule to do little entertaining at home, where the preponderance of women was most notable, and refusing to accept invitations except singly. The Vanderwall girls were rarely seen together; each had her pose and kept ...
— The Heart of Rachael • Kathleen Norris

... to amuse herself by going to the Opera, French and Italian. Twice a week she appeared there with her mother and Madame de Clagny, who was made by her husband to visit Dinah. Still, in spite of her cleverness, her charming manners, her fashionable stylishness, she was never really happy but with her children, on whom she lavished ...
— Parisians in the Country - The Illustrious Gaudissart, and The Muse of the Department • Honore de Balzac

... pursuers to believe that they had gone far out into the native country; whereas, in fact, their hiding place was somewhere among the settlements. Should this be so, the only way to find them was to search for their back track. This he had now found and, with a shout of triumph at his own cleverness, Jim forded the river and followed ...
— A Final Reckoning - A Tale of Bush Life in Australia • G. A. Henty

... of our circle has been, and still is, stronger than the man, not by virtue of her fascinations, not through her cleverness in performing the same pharisaical semblance of work as man, but because she has not stepped out from under the law that she should undergo that real labor, with danger to her life, with exertion to the last degree, from which the man of the wealthy ...
— What To Do? - thoughts evoked by the census of Moscow • Count Lyof N. Tolstoi

... so bright and clever and says such smart things, and can write. I adore cleverness. I'm not a bit clever. I work dreadfully hard to keep up in my classes. But Kathleen is actually brilliant, and, besides, she took me to ...
— Grace Harlowe's Fourth Year at Overton College • Jessie Graham Flower

... adopted tortoise-shell spectacles as badges of their slickerhood, and this made them so easy to recognize that Amory and Rahill never missed one. The slicker seemed distributed through school, always a little wiser and shrewder than his contemporaries, managing some team or other, and keeping his cleverness carefully concealed. ...
— This Side of Paradise • F. Scott Fitzgerald

... specially interesting as the haunt of half the painters of the early Georgian era. There are anecdotes of Hogarth and his friends to be picked up here in abundance, and the locality generally deserves exploration, from the quaintness and cleverness of its former inhabitants. ...
— Old and New London - Volume I • Walter Thornbury

... your training before I let you into the regular game and for the sake of the little Burrows girl, whom I fell in love with when she was so friendless. I believed things would reach a climax in the Hathaway case, in this very spot, but I couldn't foresee that your cleverness would ferret out that letter, which the girl Irene intended to keep silent about, nor did I know that the Chief would send me here in person to supervise Hathaway's capture. Mighty queer things happen ...
— Mary Louise • Edith van Dyne (one of L. Frank Baum's pen names)

... away a gold piece as another man would take a stimulant. Gradually, without really thinking about it, I came to see this, and then went on to sabe why Denton picked up the coins; and a great admiration for Denton's cleverness seeped through me like water through the sand. He was saving the coins to keep Schwartz going. When the last coin went, Schwartz would give out. It all sounds queer now, but it seemed all right then—and ...
— Arizona Nights • Stewart Edward White

... necessary to remove the strange shapelessness that had incrusted her, and reveal the grace and loveliness of a divinity. Imperfect as the design, the attitude, the costume, and especially the face of the image still remained, there was already an effect that drew the eye from the wooden cleverness of Drowne's earlier productions and fixed it upon the tantalizing mystery of this ...
— Mosses from an Old Manse and Other Stories • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... forty-five degrees." Jukes was a civil engineer, and Condy held that it was a capital bit of realism on the part of the author to have him speak of the pitch of the hills in just such technical terms. At first he thought he would call Travis' attention to this bit of cleverness; but as he read he abruptly changed his mind. He would see if she would find it out for herself. It would be a test of her quickness, he told himself; almost an unfair test, because the point was extremely subtle and could easily be ignored by the most experienced of fiction ...
— Blix • Frank Norris

... made to include, but which they are beginning to recognise as playing some part in production. We must remember, however, that we are using it in a strictly technical sense, which will in some respects be narrower than the ordinary, and in some more comprehensive. It will exclude all kinds of cleverness unapplied to economic production; and will include many powers, in so far as such production is affected by them, to the expression of whose scope and character it ...
— A Critical Examination of Socialism • William Hurrell Mallock

... the thread of what the Persian, in tones as soft and unruffled as ever, was saying in reply to his words. He gathered himself up to hear and to answer, and there followed a discussion in which a number of those present joined; a discussion full of cleverness and the adroit handling of words, yet which left Philip in the confusion of being made to realize that what to him were vital truths were to those about him merely so many hypotheses upon which to found argument. There were more women ...
— The Puritans • Arlo Bates

... agility. Though, when one says lack of agility, it is fair to add that only a very swiftly moving creature could have escaped the two hounds at all; and, once it reached a tree-trunk, this reptile showed simply wonderful cleverness in climbing, running up fifty feet of iron-bark trunk as quickly as it could cover the level ground, and keeping always on the far side of the tree from the dogs, its long, ugly, wedge-shaped head constantly turning from ...
— Finn The Wolfhound • A. J. Dawson

... great skill and cleverness in criminal investigation, Mr. Colwyn," continued Phil earnestly, "and wish to avail myself of your help. That is the object ...
— The Hand in the Dark • Arthur J. Rees

... we expected to pass the frontier again in the afternoon, on our return to Orbe. Whether they believed us, or, believing, thought us very foolish, is best known to themselves; but I suspect the latter, by their compliments on our cleverness, on our return. At Jougne we supplied ourselves with provisions, and then proceeded through valleys, each narrower than the last, more dismal with pines, and more chequered with snow. The air of desolation, here and there rendered move ...
— The Hour and the Man - An Historical Romance • Harriet Martineau

... anxiety and attention were concentrated on my Mother. An old woman who happened to be there, and who was unemployed, turned her thoughts to me, and tried to awake in me a spark of vitality. She succeeded, and she was afterwards complimented by the doctor on her cleverness. My Father could not—when he told me the story—recollect the name of my preserver. I have often longed to know who she was. For all the rapture of life, for all its turmoils, its anxious desires, its manifold pleasures, and even for its sorrow and suffering, I bless ...
— Father and Son • Edmund Gosse

... cried Alyosha, completely carried away. "They have no such great cleverness and no mysteries and secrets.... Perhaps nothing but Atheism, that's all their secret. Your Inquisitor does not believe in God, that's ...
— The Brothers Karamazov • Fyodor Dostoyevsky

... the position in which they are develops a kind of cunning rather than acuteness or cleverness?-Yes; it fosters a sort of low cunning. The system having been continued, one might almost say, for centuries has fostered that ...
— Second Shetland Truck System Report • William Guthrie

... other people," said Rosalind shrewdly. "We both gave ourselves airs, and the wesult was the same, whatever caused it. I was pwoud of my face, and you were pwoud of your—your—er—family—and your cleverness, and—the twicks you played; so if I confess, you ought to confess too. I'm sorry I aggwavated you, Mawiquita, and took all the pwaise for the decowations. It was howwibly mean, and I don't wonder you were angwy. I'm ...
— About Peggy Saville • Mrs. G. de Horne Vaizey

... widens the field of its application; art is a mill whose thirlage, in different ages, widens and contracts; but, in any case and under any fashion, the great man produces beauty, terror, and mirth, and the little man produces cleverness (personalities, psychology) instead of beauty, ugliness instead of terror, and jokes instead of mirth. As it was in the beginning, is now, and shall be ever, world without ...
— The Letters of Robert Louis Stevenson - Volume 1 • Robert Louis Stevenson

... Caesar, riding at anchor at a distance from shore, was forced to wait the sentence of this tribunal. It seems they were so far different in their opinions that some were for sending the man away, and others again for inviting and receiving him; but Theodotus, to show his cleverness and the cogency of his rhetoric, undertook to demonstrate, that neither the one nor the other was safe in that juncture of affairs. For if they entertained him, they would be sure to make Caesar their enemy, and Pompey their master; or if they dismissed him, they might render themselves hereafter ...
— Plutarch's Lives • A.H. Clough

... slowly but surely moving upward. The honest man's chances for success in business are better than ever before, and the dishonest man's chances for lasting commercial success are less than ever before. To grow rich by failing in business is no longer regarded as an act of cleverness. The professional bankrupt finds it more and more difficult to get credit. He soon discovers that even his cash will not win for him the attention that his poorer neighbor ...
— The business career in its public relations • Albert Shaw

... against him, and crush every enemy, even those of the most exalted position. Mazarin has no such antecedents. He is not even a Frenchman; he does not even look like a noble. That he is clever we may be sure, or Richelieu would not have recommended him as his successor. But I fancy that it is the cleverness of an adventurer, and however adroit, an adventurer, and especially a foreign adventurer, will not hold power in France very long without exciting the hatred of the community and the hostility of the nobles. However, I suppose you are ...
— Won by the Sword - A Story of the Thirty Years' War • G.A. Henty

... dinner in Cleveland Square. And people liked to go to his house. They knew they would not be bored and not be poisoned there. Men appreciated him as well as women, despite the reminiscence of Brick Lane discoverable in him. His directness, his cleverness, and his apparent good-will soon overcame any dawning instinct summoned up in John ...
— Bella Donna - A Novel • Robert Hichens

... the more useless to relate the conversation which took place between the three confederates at the "Cheval Rouge," because the arrangements there concluded were the basis of certain confidences made, as we shall see, by Theodose to Mademoiselle Thuillier; but it is necessary to remark that the cleverness displayed by la Peyrade seemed almost alarming to Cerizet and Dutocq. After this conference, the banker of the poor, finding himself in company with such powerful players, had it in mind to make sure of his own stake at the first chance. To win the game at any price ...
— The Lesser Bourgeoisie • Honore de Balzac

... the Vedas he never, as far as I recollect, defended the divine origin of his own sacred writings in the abstract, but he displayed great casuistic cleverness in maintaining that every argument that had ever been adduced in support of a supernatural origin of the Bible could be used with equal force in favor of a divine authorship of the Veda. His own ideas of the Veda were chiefly derived from the Upanishads, ...
— Chips from a German Workshop - Volume IV - Essays chiefly on the Science of Language • Max Muller

... often do things in that way, in order to be odd. It is a sign of cleverness to be odd, you know.—But I, too, am sent into these seas on a ...
— The Red Rover • James Fenimore Cooper

... what are they doing now down there?" he asked, pointing to the floor with fantastic precautions of voice and gesture, whose meaning, borne upon my mind in a lurid flash, made me very sick of my cleverness. "They are all asleep," I answered, watching him narrowly. That was it. That's what he wanted to hear; these were the exact words that could calm him. He drew a long breath. "Ssh! Quiet, steady. I am an old stager ...
— Lord Jim • Joseph Conrad

... add that no shallow or petty person can paint. Mere cleverness or special gift never made an artist. It is only perfectness of mind, unity, depth, decision, the highest qualities, in fine, of the intellect, which ...
— Atlantic Monthly Volume 6, No. 34, August, 1860 • Various

... of narrow minds and dishonest natures, who pride themselves upon their jesuitical cleverness in equivocation, in their serpent-wise shirking of the truth and getting out of moral back-doors, in order to hide their real opinions and evade the consequences of holding and openly professing them. Institutions or systems based upon any such expedients must necessarily prove ...
— Character • Samuel Smiles

... to the horizon in a diplomatic silence. I did not know whether to be angry, amused, or alarmed that the man estimated my cleverness so slightly. Why, the hook was barely concealed, and the bait of the coarsest. That I would go safe to a sight of San Salvador I did not doubt: that I would never enter the harbour I was absolutely certain. The choice offered me was practically whether I preferred being thrown overboard now or ...
— The Mystery • Stewart Edward White and Samuel Hopkins Adams

... very spirit and avatar. Personally, he is often sad; his own life has been hard; and yet the heart of him is all hope and courage, all delight too in the daily planning and wrestling, the contrivance and the cleverness, the rifling and outwitting of Nature—that makes a Canadian—at any rate a Western Canadian. I suppose he doesn't know anything about art. Mr. Arthur seems to have nothing in common with him; but there is in him that rush and ...
— Lady Merton, Colonist • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... him, "what Goethe says of the boys in Venice? He explains their cleverness, grace, and self-possession as children by the possibility of any one ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 13, No. 77, March, 1864 • Various

... that influence is multiplied. We are aroused to new seriousness of thought. The frivolity and selfish pleasure-seeking that have marked our life for recent decades are decreasing. We may reasonably hope that the literature of superficial cleverness and smart cynicism, which has been in vogue for the last period, will have had its day, that the perpetrators of such literature will be, measurably speaking, without audience at ...
— The Soul of Democracy - The Philosophy Of The World War In Relation To Human Liberty • Edward Howard Griggs

... longing for a favourable turn of the card, but still affects to solace himself with philosophy, and wraps himself in dignified reflections upon the blessings of retirement, contrast with Swift's downright avowal of indignant scorn for himself and mankind. And yet we have a sense of the man's amazing cleverness, and regret that he has no chance of trying one more fall with his antagonists in the open arena. Pope's affectation is perhaps the most transparent and the most gratuitous. His career had been pre-eminently successful; his talents had found their natural outlet; and he had only to be what he ...
— Alexander Pope - English Men of Letters Series • Leslie Stephen

... wife with no man's interference, that's all; for ne'er a penny will you get from me, my lad, unless you marry to please me a little, as well as yourself a great deal. That's all I ask of you. I'm not particular as to beauty, or as to cleverness, and piano- playing, and that sort of thing; if Roger marries this girl, we shall have enough of that in the family. I should not much mind her being a bit older than you, but she must be well-born, and the more money she brings the better for the ...
— Wives and Daughters • Elizabeth Cleghorn Gaskell

... Sydney, surely—with your cleverness! Listen to this, then; perhaps you like it better that I call you ...
— A Tar-Heel Baron • Mabell Shippie Clarke Pelton

... the true. Take that little sketch, 'Trapped,' you sent me out to see last week. A more sophisticated audience might have mistaken its brittle epigrammatic quality for brilliancy and its flippancy for cleverness. But not your ten-twenty-thirty's. In real life a husband doesn't psychanalyze his wife's lover. He horsewhips him. And that lovely blank-verse fantasy that you attempted on your own. That is the sort of thing you are going to stand for some day in the theater. I loved your ...
— Star-Dust • Fannie Hurst



Words linked to "Cleverness" :   superiority, high quality, clever, ingeniousness, imagination, resourcefulness, creative thinking, inventiveness, creativeness, resource, brightness, ingenuity, smartness, creativity, intelligence



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