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Excuse   /ɪkskjˈus/  /ɪkskjˈuz/   Listen
Excuse

verb
(past & past part. excused; pres. part. excusing)
1.
Accept an excuse for.  Synonym: pardon.
2.
Grant exemption or release to.  Synonyms: exempt, let off, relieve.
3.
Serve as a reason or cause or justification of.  Synonym: explain.  "Her recent divorce may explain her reluctance to date again"
4.
Defend, explain, clear away, or make excuses for by reasoning.  Synonyms: apologise, apologize, justify, rationalise, rationalize.  "He rationalized his lack of success"
5.
Ask for permission to be released from an engagement.  Synonym: beg off.
6.
Excuse, overlook, or make allowances for; be lenient with.  Synonym: condone.  "She condoned her husband's occasional infidelities"



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"Excuse" Quotes from Famous Books



... about his own judgment and wish, before absolutely settling the case, to obtain the opinion of an expert. When, however, he learned that the opinion of Herod coincided with his own, there was no further excuse for delay. ...
— The Trial and Death of Jesus Christ - A Devotional History of our Lord's Passion • James Stalker

... up old stories; what is done cannot be undone. You, as a father, ought to excuse little subterfuges, contrived in order to get a daughter off one's hands. I was so anxious to ally myself with your distinguished family that I did sail rather near the wind. But I have come to offer you some amends by putting you on ...
— Tales of Bengal • S. B. Banerjea

... ill-disposed towards the ancient regime, hostile to Catholicism and feudal rights, unfavorable to the clergy and the nobility, inclined to extend the bearing and exaggerate the rigor of recent decrees, partisans of the Rights of Man, and, therefore, humanitarians and optimists, disposed to excuse the misdeeds of the people, hesitating, tardy and often timid in the face of an outbreak—in short, admirable writers, exhorters, and reformers, but good for nothing when it comes to breaking heads and risking their own bones. They have not been ...
— The Origins of Contemporary France, Volume 2 (of 6) - The French Revolution, Volume 1 (of 3) • Hippolyte A. Taine

... Leverett was having a hard fight with himself. He was really ashamed of having been conquered by what he called a boy's romantic passion. He could excuse himself for the early lapse; he was a boy then. His honor and what he called good sense were mightily at war with this desire that well-nigh overmastered him. True, men older than he had married young wives. But this child had been entrusted to ...
— A Little Girl in Old Salem • Amanda Minnie Douglas

... words of the law, and I urge this the more lest any persons should draw dangerous inferences to shadow their traitorous acts. Gentlemen, the King is the vicegerent of God, and has no superior. If any man shall shroud himself under any pretended authority, you must know that this is not an excuse, but the ...
— The Shadow of a Crime - A Cumbrian Romance • Hall Caine

... curve of her limbs. In this way the native value of the sense symbols becomes suffused and enriched with the values of the things they represent. The two functions of color and of line should never be indifferent to each other; representation should not become a mere excuse for decoration, the objects represented having no value in themselves; nor should color and line be used as mere signs of interesting objects, without reference to their intrinsic value. On the contrary, the two functions should play into each other's hands. If, for example, ...
— The Principles Of Aesthetics • Dewitt H. Parker

... "Pray excuse me, ladies," said Lousteau, "but I find it impossible to go on without remarking to you how direct this Empire literature is, going to the point without any details, a characteristic, as it seems to me, of a primitive time. The literature of that period holds a place between the summaries of ...
— The Muse of the Department • Honore de Balzac

... in her loyal, tender heart—began soon after her return from school to cultivate old William Truedale, much to that crabbed gentleman's surprise and apparent confusion. There was some excuse for the sudden friendship, for Brace during preparatory school and college had formed a deep and sincere attachment for Conning Truedale and at vacation time the two boys and Lynda were much together. To be sure the visiting was largely one-sided, as the gloomy house of the elder Truedale offered ...
— The Man Thou Gavest • Harriet T. Comstock

... rest. I heard a comment made on the subject by one of the Devons washing down by the river. Its seriousness and the peculiar humour of the British soldier will excuse it. "Why don't they go on bombardin' of us to-day?" said one. "'Cos it's Sunday, and they're singin' 'ymns," said another. "Well," said the first, "if they do start bombardin' of us, there ain't only one 'ymn I'll sing, an' that's 'Rock of Ages, cleft for me, Let me 'ide myself in thee.'" ...
— Ladysmith - The Diary of a Siege • H. W. Nevinson

... cowboys—a fake Indian fight; it takes lots of grit to stand up in front of an oncoming troop of horsemen, and snap them until they get so close you can see the whites of their eyes. Then if they turn at the right time—well and good. But if there's a slip, and they ride into you—good-night! Excuse my slang," he ...
— The Moving Picture Girls - First Appearances in Photo Dramas • Laura Lee Hope

... where they had been put and place them at my head, but this I saw would give offence, and now as some young children were lying down to sleep near them, there was not enough room for me. Still a little fearful, I made an excuse and stepped out of the wigwam for a minute. There I saw that the snow was well piled up against the leather wall all around. This quieted my fears, and so I returned into the wigwam, and being very weary was soon fast asleep. In the morning my furs were gone! A thief in the night ...
— Winter Adventures of Three Boys • Egerton R. Young

... prizes, and the amount of money lost annually is great. Naturally, under such circumstances the principal, almost the only, aim of the ordinary manager is to please the masses. Many concessions are made to the wishes of the crowd, and by way of excuse the phrase "the drama's laws the drama's patrons give" is quoted. It is painful to think that people can quote Johnson's line without a feeling of scorn, yet it necessarily contains an awful amount of truth when theatres ...
— Our Stage and Its Critics • "E.F.S." of "The Westminster Gazette"

... utterly exhausted by their efforts.—Come, Prytanes, take Theoria. Oh! look how graciously yonder fellow has received her; you would not have been in such a hurry to introduce her to the Senate, if nothing were coming to you through it;[353] you would not have failed to plead some holiday as an excuse. ...
— The Eleven Comedies - Vol. I • Aristophanes et al

... you? Don't send a note at the last minute making some excuse." She did not say that to any of the others. A little ...
— Pan • Knut Hamsun

... even compassionately consent; if she will go abroad with me upon the chance of his death or mine preventing our union, and live with me till she is of age— ... perhaps there is no heart so callous by avarice, no soul so poisoned by prejudice, no head so feather'd by foppery, that will forbear to excuse her when she returns to the rich and the gay—for having saved the life of a mother thro' compliance, extorted by anguish, contrary to the received ...
— Autobiography, Letters and Literary Remains of Mrs. Piozzi (Thrale) (2nd ed.) (2 vols.) • Mrs. Hester Lynch Piozzi

... man would be cautious how he dealt in blood. He would feel some apprehension at being called to a tremendous account for engaging in so deep a play, without any sort of knowledge of the game. It is no excuse for presumptuous ignorance, that it is directed by insolent passion. The poorest being that crawls on earth, contending to save itself from injustice and oppression, is an object respectable in the eyes of God and man. But I cannot conceive any existence under heaven (which, ...
— Selections from the Speeches and Writings of Edmund Burke. • Edmund Burke

... which Coeur de Lion could least excuse was the general inactivity which prevailed in the camp of the Crusaders so soon as his illness assumed a serious aspect; and the reports which he extracted from his unwilling attendants gave him to understand that the hopes ...
— The Talisman • Sir Walter Scott

... that the very weakness of my excuse with regard to the paper was my strength. If I were indeed the villain that I seemed, why in God's name had I not destroyed the paper? I had had near five years to do it in! Was not that an additional sign that I had, as I said, merely forgotten it? ...
— Oddsfish! • Robert Hugh Benson

... Kaan's attention to the accursed doctrines of the Sect of the Saracens, which excuse every crime, yea even murder itself, when committed on such as are not of their religion. And seeing that this doctrine had led the accursed Achmath and his sons to act as they did without any sense of guilt, the Kaan was led to entertain the greatest disgust and abomination for ...
— The Travels of Marco Polo Volume 1 • Marco Polo and Rustichello of Pisa

... grand duke got chummy and looked the town over together; but not much to look at, and this evening they drifted into this place—the Russian taking a high-ball and Cogan another ginger ale—to have an excuse to hang around and ...
— Wide Courses • James Brendan Connolly

... For the third time Janko forgot the Little Fox's warning! I have no excuse to make for him. I don't see how he could have forgotten a third time! But he did. He took the golden bridle instead of the hempen one and put it over the head of the Golden Horse. The Horse neighed and instantly all the sleeping guards awoke and came running ...
— The Laughing Prince - Jugoslav Folk and Fairy Tales • Parker Fillmore

... battlefield. I don't think women have shared this feeling to the same extent. I am told there were never so many sealskin coats to be seen as during last winter. But, perhaps, the women will say that men have been only too glad to use the war as an excuse for getting rid of an incubus. And they may be right. We had better not make too great a virtue of what is, after all, a comfortable change. Let us enjoy it ...
— Pebbles on the Shore • Alpha of the Plough (Alfred George Gardiner)

... as soon as possible. The reason for the diplomatic rupture is sufficient reason for declaring war. This has already been explained. It would be impossible for us to find an excuse for declaring war if war be not declared now. According to usual procedure war is declared when the forces of the two countries come into actual conflict. Now such a possibility does not exist between ...
— The Fight For The Republic in China • Bertram Lenox Putnam Weale

... it said, all alone, in the midst of a huge swamp, from which escape could only be had by means of a boat, and into which he had been conducted blindfolded. Around him were men, all ready at any instant to take his life for the merest excuse; and already the lives of his three friends were sacrificed unless he could do something—and that very ...
— A Woman at Bay - A Fiend in Skirts • Nicholas Carter

... and anxiety. They were always, as I discovered, bound together by the strongest affection; and now that they had been made by circumstances all in all to each other, they were thus separated! Will not my readers excuse my attempting to describe such grief as her's ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Volume 10, No. 279, October 20, 1827 • Various

... laughed Betty, squinting at the unbecoming neck for a moment. "It's too high behind, that's all. Rip off the collar and I'll cut it down. And I have an extra blue tie that you can have—it needs a tie. But I thought you'd manage to get an excuse from gym, when you hate ...
— Betty Wales, Sophomore • Margaret Warde

... thing to be done, and the sooner the ceremony should be over the better. Lent would come on in a few short weeks; that would be the excuse to hasten matters, and this idea was all Tamara was conscious of ...
— His Hour • Elinor Glyn

... scene, Corny," she said, without one word, one look, one sign of the interest I feel in you. My dear, dear father has heard all; and, though disappointed, he does not disapprove. You know how warmly he has wished Mr. Bulstrode for a son, and can excuse that preference; but he desired me, not ten minutes since, as he left me, after giving me a kiss and his blessing, to send for you, and to say that he shall hereafter look upon you as my and his choice. Heaven alone knows whether we are to be permitted to meet again, dear Corny; but, should that ...
— Satanstoe • James Fenimore Cooper

... as we have seen, at about the middle of September, and produced a great sensation throughout the country. The ribald voice of party-spirit was for a moment subdued in tone, if not silenced, for it was deprived of the theme of Washington's renomination, which had been a convenient excuse for attacks upon his character. In every part of the Union sentiments of veneration for the author were manifested. Some of the state legislatures directed the address to be entered at large upon their journals. It was published in every newspaper in the land, and in many of ...
— Washington and the American Republic, Vol. 3. • Benson J. Lossing

... the law, and they've kept this fellow from his deserts till folks have almost forgot what it was he did. It's disgraceful. It makes our courts the laughing-stock of the world. It gives the anarchists an excuse for saying that there's one law for the poor and another for ...
— In a Little Town • Rupert Hughes

... completely as possible; and it is probable that if we are able to reach the ultimate nature and origin of these elements of music they will prove significant, and a way will be opened to a theory of the whole musical experience. The need of such intensive understanding must excuse the more or less technical discussions in the following pages, without which no firm foundation for a theory of ...
— The Psychology of Beauty • Ethel D. Puffer

... chill, it was the latter end of September; yet she did not retire to warm herself and think in bed, till the sound of the servants, moving about the house, convinced her that the unknown would not walk in the garden that morning. She was ashamed at feeling disappointed; and began to reflect, as an excuse to herself, on the little objects which attract attention when there is nothing to divert the mind; and how difficult it was for women to avoid growing romantic, who have no active duties ...
— Posthumous Works - of the Author of A Vindication of the Rights of Woman • Mary Wollstonecraft

... politicians had only kept their word, we'd have had our shipyard deal to save us," he said, more to himself than to me. Yet that, I knew, was more an excuse ...
— The Prairie Mother • Arthur Stringer

... my finances, she dwelt so constantly upon this subject, that I at length yielded to her repeated solicitations, and permitted her to write to her father. Her letter was a most proper one; combining a dutiful regret for leaving her home, with the hope that her choice had been such as to excuse her rashness, or, at least, palliate her fault. It went to say, that her father's acknowledgment of her, was all she needed or cared for, to complete her happiness, and asking for his permission to seek it in person. This was the substance of the letter, ...
— The Confessions of Harry Lorrequer, Complete • Charles James Lever (1806-1872)

... considers as his own Property, and which therefore it justly takes away for his own Offence. Perhaps, in Cases of Hereditary Possessions, it may seem a little hard, because it prevents the next Heir from inheriting; but if there be any Evil or Imperfection in this, we must excuse it, for the Sake of the Intent, which might be for the general Good, the more effectually to deter Men from treasonable Conspiracies against their Prince, whereby the Happiness of Society hath been often greatly disturbed, and whole Kingdoms and Countries depopulated: but in this Case, it is ...
— Free and Impartial Thoughts, on the Sovereignty of God, The Doctrines of Election, Reprobation, and Original Sin: Humbly Addressed To all who Believe and Profess those DOCTRINES. • Richard Finch

... to make. The first is of the rather inartistically high level of profanity maintained by the speech of Davis and Huish. It is natural enough, of course; but that is no excuse if the frequency of the swearing prevent its making its proper impression in the right place. And the name "Robert Herrick," bestowed on one of the three beach-loafers, might have been shunned. You may call ...
— Adventures in Criticism • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... of the funeral being the Sabbath, nothing that touched on business was referred to. On the following morning, however, "the friends" assembled early in the parlour, and an excuse for being a little pressing was made, on the ground that so many present had so far to go. The deacon had probably made a remove much more distant than any ...
— The Sea Lions - The Lost Sealers • James Fenimore Cooper

... questions here an' there, forgettin' to do things ye're told to do, ponderin' deep over simple matters, an' above all ye're to neither laugh nor take offense when I berate ye for a dullard. Ye get the idea—your knowledge of fur is your only excuse ...
— The Challenge of the North • James Hendryx

... of your unequaled journal makes me interested in you as if you were personal friends, and so I have run away with these pointless remarks. I am sure you will excuse me, and not wonder that one wishes ...
— Scientific American, Vol.22, No. 1, January 1, 1870 • Various

... letters, as published in the papers, give conclusive proof of the utter ignorance of their writers, we must not judge the spirit of the State by them, any more than by the louder disloyal utterances of men who have not their excuse. Governor Yates speaks for the PEOPLE ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. III, No. V, May, 1863 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... shipping—piracies which are not easily forgiven—and that he considered that he had a right to make an example of them. It is not unlikely that he might, after all, have intended to forgive them, and have given the queen the grace of obtaining their pardon, so as to excuse himself from the fulfillment of some over-hasty threat. But, however this may have been, nothing can lessen the glory of the six grave and patient men who went forth, by their own free will to meet what might be a cruel and disgraceful death, ...
— The Junior Classics • Various

... the challenge with directness. "Why should I have come, unless I thought I could be of use to you? It is my only excuse for ...
— House of Mirth • Edith Wharton

... You must excuse me," he concluded, courteously. "You want to go to the front. Where should you ...
— New York Times Current History: The European War, Vol 2, No. 1, April, 1915 - April-September, 1915 • Various

... said Lin. "I won't smoke, if yu'll excuse me." He had devised a wholesome meal, with ...
— Lin McLean • Owen Wister

... fittings of this beautiful little vessel are in perfect taste. We stopped for two hours at the wharf at Niagara, a town on the British side, protected once by a now disused and dismantled fort. The cars at length came up, two hours after their time, and the excuse given for the delay was, that they had run over ...
— The Englishwoman in America • Isabella Lucy Bird

... door in vain; it was locked and would not open. He waited several minutes, and in his nervous impatience walked restlessly up and down the court. At last an old woman appeared carrying a small wax taper. She was feeble and bent, and began to excuse herself; she was alone and could not be everywhere at the same time, in her lodge and lighting the lamps on the stairways. Caffie lived on the first floor, in the wing ...
— Conscience, Complete • Hector Malot

... regrets on that score. She would make it again under the same conditions. How could she have done otherwise? It would have been to stand aside and permit a crime to be committed which she was assured was easily within her power to prevent. What excuse could she have had for that? Fear wasn't an excuse. She did not like the thought of entering the back door of a store in the middle of the night like a thief, and, like a thief, taking away that hidden money. ...
— The White Moll • Frank L. Packard

... which Antony's base abandonment of his fleet and army at the battle of Actium excited, over all that part of the empire which had been under his command, was extreme. There was not the slightest possible excuse for such a flight. His army, in which his greatest strength lay, remained unharmed, and even his fleet was not defeated. The ships continued the combat until night, notwithstanding the betrayal of their cause by their commander. They were at length, however, subdued. ...
— Cleopatra • Jacob Abbott

... curious taste for ornamenting their villages with the skulls of strangers. When Sebituane appeared near the great falls, an immense army collected to make trophies of the Makololo skulls; but, instead of succeeding in this, they gave him a good excuse for conquering them, and capturing so many cattle that his people were quite incapable of taking any note of the sheep and goats. He overran all the high lands toward the Kafue, and settled in what is called a pastoral country, of gently undulating plains, covered with short grass and but little ...
— Missionary Travels and Researches in South Africa - Journeys and Researches in South Africa • David Livingstone

... pause. The old gentleman resumed: "We are not far from my home now (or rather my temporary residence, for my proper and general home is at Cheshunt, in Hertfordshire); and, as the day is scarcely half spent, I trust you will not object to partake of a hermit's fare. Nay, nay, no excuse: I assure you that I am not a gossip in general, or a liberal dispenser of invitations; and I think, if you refuse me now, you will hereafter ...
— Devereux, Complete • Edward Bulwer-Lytton

... "Excuse me," said the conductor, "the coach is waiting. Sign my book and pay me forty-seven francs, sixty centimes, and whatever you please for myself and the conductor from Nantes; we've taken care of the little girl as if she were our own; and paid for her beds and her food, also ...
— The Celibates - Includes: Pierrette, The Vicar of Tours, and The Two Brothers • Honore de Balzac

... Castilian, "I crave your pardon for the rudeness of my curiosity, which prompted me to survey a nobleman, whose character I revere, and to whose misfortunes I am no stranger. Indeed, were curiosity alone concerned, I should be without excuse; but as I am heartily inclined to serve you, as far as my weak abilities extend, I hope your generosity will not impute any little involuntary trespass of punctilio to my want of ...
— The Adventures of Ferdinand Count Fathom, Complete • Tobias Smollett

... must enlighten their ignorance," he said gayly. "Excuse me a moment, my love. Take care of mamma for me while I'm gone, Gracie," and rising hastily ...
— Elsie's New Relations • Martha Finley

... there was an abundance of watermelons, and he had always been plentifully supplied with all the fruits in their season. He had, therefore, no excuse for stealing melons. There could be no excuse, under any circumstances, for stealing. He did not need them; he ...
— In School and Out - or, The Conquest of Richard Grant. • Oliver Optic

... "Excuse me," flung back Grace, as she hurried off. "I'll be back in a minute. I hope he's going to confess where he ...
— The Outdoor Girls at Rainbow Lake • Laura Lee Hope

... it but to get off. He had no excuse for delay, and had a long ride before him; so he and the boys went round to the stable. On their passage through the garden, the idea of picking a nosegay and sending it to her by one of the boys ...
— Tom Brown at Oxford • Thomas Hughes

... in her tidy morning wrapper and trimly laced boots, comes stepping over the bales and boxes which are discharged on the verandah; while he, for joy of his new acquisition, can hardly let her walk on her own pretty feet, and is making every fond excuse to lift her over obstacles and carry her into her new ...
— The Atlantic Monthly, Volume 15, No. 91, May, 1865 • Various

... got no excuse," the soft voice urged; "ye know jes how I feel, how ye'd hev felt, whenst ...
— His "Day In Court" - 1895 • Charles Egbert Craddock (AKA Mary Noailles Murfree)

... good cousin, my excellent Mrs. Betty, excuse me that my tyrant friseur prevents my rising to welcome you. It is so good and friendly in you to come in this informal way to cheer me under this terrible anxiety. Let me present you to my kind friend, the Countess of Aresfield, ...
— Love and Life • Charlotte M. Yonge

... black-letter legend, in which one half expected to meet mediaeval knights on foaming steeds—every-day folk ride jogging horses—threading their way through the mysterious forest aisles in search of those romantic adventures which were necessary to give knights of that period an excuse for existence. It chanced, however, that the only knights known to Woodlands were the old-time friends of its master and the youthful writers who looked to "Father ...
— Literary Hearthstones of Dixie • La Salle Corbell Pickett

... government which, legally installed for the whole country, was bound, so long as it was possible, not to overstep the limits of orderly prescription, and could not, without abnegating its own very nature, take the lead in making rebellion an excuse for revolution. There were, no doubt, many ardent and sincere persons who seemed to think this as simple a thing to do as to lead off a Virginia reel. They forgot what should be forgotten least of all in a system like ours, that the administration ...
— Harvard Classics Volume 28 - Essays English and American • Various

... wine, and thundered forth in reply his grand song, "For a' that and a' that," with which it will do no harm to refresh the memories of our readers, for we doubt there may be, even in Republican America, those who need the reproof as much, and with far less excuse, than ...
— At Home And Abroad - Or, Things And Thoughts In America and Europe • Margaret Fuller Ossoli

... "Excuse me a moment, will you?" said Mr. Baxter to Joan. "There's a man over there I must speak to. . . ." He rose and crossed the restaurant. Joan watched him as he moved between the tables; then she looked at Vane. "Your recollections are all wrong," ...
— Mufti • H. C. (Herman Cyril) McNeile

... age might have excited compassion; but the compassion of Licinius was a very feeble resource, nor did it restrain him from extinguishing the name and memory of his adversary. The death of Severianus will admit of less excuse, as it was dictated neither by revenge nor by policy. The conqueror had never received any injury from the father of that unhappy youth, and the short and obscure reign of Severus, in a distant part of the empire, was already forgotten. But the execution of Candidianus ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 1 • Edward Gibbon

... the profession which should be monopolized by woman. The fact that it is now almost wholly in the hands of the male practitioner, is an outrage on common decency that nothing but the tyrant custom can excuse. "From the earliest history down to 1568, it was practiced by women. The distinguished individual first to make the innovation on this ancient, time-sanctified custom, was no less a personage than a court prostitute, the Duchess of Villiers, ...
— History of Woman Suffrage, Volume I • Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Susan B. Anthony, and Matilda Joslyn Gage

... my good woman," demanded the Paymaster, "that you would set him out on the road homeless on so poor an excuse as that? Far-out cousin here or far-out cousin there, he has no kin closer than yourself between the two stones of the parish. Where's your Hielan' ...
— Gilian The Dreamer - His Fancy, His Love and Adventure • Neil Munro

... had some difficulty in securing even these. The men waited for the first sign of smoke from the chimneys, but none came. No one was lighting the furnaces; there was nothing but silence inside the shops. There was no possible excuse as yet for deeds of violence, though many of the more turbulent element urged riot at once. What was the use of waiting? In the afternoon there appeared some fifty more strange men. These carried tool-bags. They were challenged. They ignored ...
— Half a Rogue • Harold MacGrath

... enough, he gave blows many a time for this to the poor woman, who was in despair, it appearing to her that she was more than careful in salting her cooking. She, one time among others that her husband was beating her for this, began to try to excuse herself, wherefore Capodoca, falling into even greater rage, set himself to thrash her again in a manner that the woman screamed with all her might, and the whole neighbourhood ran up at the noise; and among others there came up Buffalmacco, who, having heard of what Capodoca was accusing ...
— Lives of the Most Eminent Painters Sculptors and Architects - Volume 1, Cimabue to Agnolo Gaddi • Giorgio Vasari

... glad that you have a reasonable excuse for not having been to see me," she said good-humouredly. "Please make yourselves comfortable while ...
— Anna the Adventuress • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... And what did she answer? She cares little about him, I'm thinking. It's no' pretty in her to amuse herself so openly at his expense, poor man, though there's some excuse, too—when he shows so ...
— Janet's Love and Service • Margaret M Robertson

... seated she made the book she had in her hand the excuse for beginning a talk about the confidence young novelists seem to have in their ability to upset the Christian religion by a fictitious representation of life, but her visitor was too preoccupied to join in it. He rose and stood leaning his arm upon the ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... You 'll excuse me, Mr. Parson, Ef I seem a little sore; But I 've sung the songs of Isr'el For threescore years an' more, An' it sort o' hurts my feelin's Fur to see 'em put away Fur these harum-scarum ditties ...
— The Complete Poems of Paul Laurence Dunbar • Paul Laurence Dunbar

... as a bell," said Hans; "and for the rest of your inquiries I'll answer them all as soon as Swartboy has skinned this 'aard-vark,' and Totty has cooked a piece of it for supper; but I'm too hungry to talk now, so pray excuse me." ...
— The Bush Boys - History and Adventures of a Cape Farmer and his Family • Captain Mayne Reid

... excuse for sitting up," he yawned, laying the book flat on the table, but still open. "I ought never to be trusted alone with any book." Then he removed his reading glasses, yawned again, and surveyed Selwyn from head ...
— The Younger Set • Robert W. Chambers

... stricken her. She refused to see Monsieur Bonnet, sending word to him that the time had not yet come. Though all her friends who had come from Limoges to celebrate her birthday wished to be with her, she begged them to excuse her from fulfilling the duties of hospitality, saying that she desired to remain in the deepest solitude. After Roubaud's departure the other guests returned to Limoges, less disappointed than distressed; for all those ...
— The Village Rector • Honore de Balzac

... because Hepburn was still in his travel-stained dress; having gone straight to the shop on his arrival in Monkshaven. Perhaps it was because, if he went this night for the short half-hour intervening before bed-time, he would have no excuse for paying a longer visit on the following evening. At any rate, he proceeded straight to Alice Rose's, as soon as he had finished his interview ...
— Sylvia's Lovers, Vol. II • Elizabeth Gaskell

... detailed account of the various modes of transmission which I have used I should have to give you figures to bear out certain experiments. I should only be able to do that in a lecture of at least five hours' duration, so I hope that you will kindly excuse me ...
— Scientific American Supplement, No. 620, November 19,1887 • Various

... Transfiguration in St. Peter's; he would put them together in a form, whose mode would be fashioned by his own peculiar mind and talent. Doubtless the leaves of the Cumaean Sibyl have suffered distortion and diminution of interest and excellence in my hands. My only excuse for thus transforming them, is that they were unintelligible ...
— The Last Man • Mary Shelley

... make the advance, and yet would risk nothing by delay. He mounted to Witherby's room in the Events building, and pushed open the door. Then he drew back, embarrassed, as if he had made a mistake. "Excuse me," he said, "isn't Mr. Atherton's office ...
— A Modern Instance • William Dean Howells

... pretence that he was engaged. Mr. Chapman had procured two Magistrates of the town of Lancaster, one of them of the name of Salusbury, who came down to the Gaol to take our recognizance, notwithstanding it was an excessively wet night, and which might have afforded them something like an excuse to have kept us in the Castle till Monday morning. But they proved themselves the very reverse of the Manchester Magistrates, at whose conduct they appeared to feel ashamed and disgusted, and they did all that honourable men and ...
— Memoirs of Henry Hunt, Esq. Volume 3 • Henry Hunt

... you have all the proper reactions. And you'll excuse me for saying that I don't think she's too good for you—and even if she were she'd have to marry somebody, you know—and when you put it, put it straight, and let Paris and everything else you're worrying about go plumb to ...
— Young People's Pride • Stephen Vincent Benet

... communicated to me on the subject was under the seal of confidence, and I hope you will excuse me if I decline to betray ...
— Infelice • Augusta Jane Evans Wilson

... regret, Aramis, is Pierrefonds; is Bracieux; is le Valon; is my beautiful France! Here we are not in France, my dear friend; we are—I know not where. Oh! I tell you, in the full sincerity of my soul, and your affection will excuse my frankness, but I declare to you I am not happy at Belle-Isle. No; in good ...
— The Vicomte de Bragelonne - Or Ten Years Later being the completion of "The Three - Musketeers" And "Twenty Years After" • Alexandre Dumas

... her the strap, and in the twinkling of an eye she had snapped the necessary buckle. Then she looked up at him and smiled oddly. It occurred to him that the entire comedy of the strap had perhaps been invented as an excuse for opening a conversation; and he was at once flattered and disappointed. 'Oh, if she's that ...
— Grey Roses • Henry Harland

... tottering, the old man recounts the value of his curiosities; which, like our chivalry, is much talked of but hard to get at. He offers in apology for the nonpayment of the debt his knowledge of the old continentals, just as we offer our chivalry in excuse for every disgraceful act-every savage law. In fine, he follows the maxims of our politicians, recapitulating a dozen or more things (wiping the sweat from his brow the while) that have no earthly connection with the subject. "They are all very ...
— Justice in the By-Ways - A Tale of Life • F. Colburn Adams

... more extended intercourse, and consequently means of information and refinement, and may seek education for his children where it may be found. I say, what is obviously true, that he has the means of obtaining those advantages; but I say nothing to palliate or excuse the conduct of him who, having such means, neglects to avail himself ...
— Cotton is King and The Pro-Slavery Arguments • Various

... enlightened modern Catholic view is probably represented by Debreyne, who, after remarking that he has known pious and intelligent persons who had an irresistible impulse to masturbate, continues: "Must we excuse, or condemn, these people? Neither the one nor the other. If you condemn and repulse absolutely these persons as altogether guilty, against their own convictions, you will perhaps throw them into despair; if, on the contrary, you completely excuse them, you maintain them in a disorder from ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 1 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... tornado or an equinoctial storm, neither is rowing. There are days when rowing is as toilsome and exhausting a process as is Bunyan's idea of virtue; while there are other days, like the present, when it seems a mere Oriental passiveness and the forsaking of works,—just an excuse to Nature for being out among her busy things. For even at this stillest of hours there is far less repose in Nature than we imagine. What created thing can seem more patient than yonder kingfisher on the sea-wall? Yet, as we glide near him, we shall ...
— Oldport Days • Thomas Wentworth Higginson

... who had been imprisoned by the king, has escaped and is being pursued. Sharvilaka departs to help him. Maitreya comes from Charudatta with the pearl necklace, to repay Vasantasena for the gem-casket. She accepts the necklace also, as giving her an excuse for a visit ...
— The Little Clay Cart - Mrcchakatika • (Attributed To) King Shudraka

... as temporal affliction goes, than that one soul, I will not say, should be lost, but should commit one single venial sin, should tell one wilful untruth, or should steal one poor farthing without excuse." I think the principle here enunciated to be the mere preamble in the formal credentials of the Catholic Church, as an Act of Parliament might begin with a "Whereas." It is because of the intensity of the evil which has possession of mankind, that a suitable antagonist ...
— Apologia Pro Vita Sua • John Henry Cardinal Newman

... the evil done by human beings is as the evil of evil beasts: they know not what they do—an excuse which, except in regard to the past, no man can make for himself, seeing the very making of it must testify ...
— Lippincott's Magazine of Popular Literature and Science Vol. XV., No. 85. January, 1875. • Various

... and imagination. To me, the old war novels have the atmosphere of smoke powder and antiquated tactics which still survived when I went on my first campaign sixteen years ago. These classic masterpieces endure through their genius; the excuse of any plodder who chooses their theme to-day is that he deals ...
— The Last Shot • Frederick Palmer

... was so usual a circumstance in Afghanistan as scarcely to account for the events that ensued. Yet it furnished the excuse for an outbreak. Early on September 3, when assembled for what proved to be the farce of payment at Bala Hissar (the citadel), three regiments mutinied, stoned their officers, and then rushed towards the British Embassy. These regiments took part in the ...
— The Development of the European Nations, 1870-1914 (5th ed.) • John Holland Rose

... the excuse unsaid. The station master had turned his face suddenly towards the Columbia; he was not listening to her. Then, presently, the sound that had caught his alert ear reached her own faintly. Somewhere out in the solitudes a train had whistled. "The westbound freight!" she exclaimed ...
— The Rim of the Desert • Ada Woodruff Anderson

... this court's pardon," said the chemist, "but I hope this court will excuse my attendance. I have no assistant, and I ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol III • Arthur Mee and J.A. Hammerton, Eds.

... Pray excuse me. I've come about that business of the MacNabs. I have heard, you often help people out of such troubles. Pray excuse me if I ...
— The Wisdom of Father Brown • G. K. Chesterton

... Mistaken though I think his attitude was in this, his opinions were shared by many prominent men of the day, and we must admit that for those who believed in a literal interpretation of the Bible there was much excuse. For instance, in a letter of September 21, 1863, to Martin Hauser, Esq., of Newbern, Indiana, he goes rather ...
— Samuel F. B. Morse, His Letters and Journals - In Two Volumes, Volume II • Samuel F. B. Morse

... not to attribute their misfortunes to chance, but to peculiarities of disposition, then we cannot acquit Romulus of blame in his treatment of his brother, nor Theseus in that of his son; but the greatest excuse must be made for the one who acted under the greatest provocation. One would not have thought that Romulus would have flown into such a passion during a grave deliberation on matters of state; while Theseus was misled, in his treatment of his son, by love ...
— Plutarch's Lives, Volume I (of 4) • Plutarch

... Acadian and Indian followers to enrage the English by petty depredations, by violations of the frontier, by attacks and ambuscades. Soon the English were provoked into retaliations; whereupon the regulars of Beausejour found an excuse for taking part, and the turbid Missaguash became the scene of such perpetual skirmishes that its waters ran redder ...
— The Raid From Beausejour; And How The Carter Boys Lifted The Mortgage • Charles G. D. Roberts

... means devoid of interest; and as little has hitherto been published about the Birds of Guernsey and the neighbouring islands, except in a few occasional papers published by Miss C.B. Carey, Mr. Harvie Browne, myself, and a few others, in the pages of the 'Zoologist,' I make no excuse for publishing this list of the birds, which, as an occasional visitor to the Channel Islands for now some thirty years, have in some way been brought to my notice as occurring in these Islands either as ...
— Birds of Guernsey (1879) • Cecil Smith

... every subject that can be thought of had all contributed. Then Larkin caught a cold in his nose, so that it ran all day and all night; and because the Browns had invited him to Aiken for a fortnight whenever he cared to come, he seized upon the excuse of his cold and boarded the first train. He was no sooner in Aiken than Dame Fortune ceased minding the other small boy, and turned her petulant eyes upon Larkin. Forthwith ...
— IT and Other Stories • Gouverneur Morris

... mer, the brilliant, if questionable, conclusion of Les Treize, La Fille aux yeux d'or, Le Contrat de mariage and Seraphita. This last, a Swedenborgian rhapsody of great beauty in parts, has divided critics almost more than anything else of its writer's, some seeing in it (with excuse) nothing but the short description given above in three words, the others (with justice) reckoning it his greatest triumph of style and his nearest attempt to reach poetry through prose. 1836 furnished ...
— Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 3, Part 1, Slice 2 - "Baconthorpe" to "Bankruptcy" • Various

... wish to find, when the time does come for your cast of characters to be thrown upon the screen, that the director has found it necessary to change half of your names. Make them so good and so appropriate that there will be absolutely no excuse for altering them. ...
— Writing the Photoplay • J. Berg Esenwein and Arthur Leeds

... away so long from home, although Stephen took the blame on himself by saying that he had to wait for some time to see old Ben, who was out in his boat, but he promised to try and keep better time in future. Day after day, on some excuse or other, he returned to Eversden. His father, he said, had written to his friend Mr Kempson at Bristol, who would, he believed, restore him to his position in the counting-house, while he hoped, from the encouragement he had before received, that he should ...
— Roger Willoughby - A Story of the Times of Benbow • William H. G. Kingston

... say something more—perhaps to try to excuse myself for my credulity—but Godfrey silenced me with a gesture. We had crept along in the shadow of the adjoining building until we were beside the entrance ...
— Master Tales of Mystery, Volume 3 • Collected and Arranged by Francis J. Reynolds

... you were content. I was vain, foolish, and willful; but, looking back at the impetuous, imperious child, full of romance, untrained, longing for the strife of life, longing for change, for excitement, for gayety, chafing under restraint, I think there was some little excuse for me. There was no excuse for what followed. When papa spoke to us—you remember it, Lily—and asked so gently if we had either of us a secret in our lives—when he promised to pardon anything, provided we kept nothing from him—I ought to have told him ...
— Dora Thorne • Charlotte M. Braeme

... remained with William through fear of death and not of his own will." The following deliverance is endorsed:—"The Chamberlain is 'commanded to give him his goods and chattels of the King's special grace.'"[5] The Sheriff, as Chamberlain, no doubt favourably represented to the King Michael's excuse, as the subsequent conduct of both the Earl of Strathearn and himself showed a fellow-feeling, and that, like Michael, they had been ...
— Chronicles of Strathearn • Various

... spiteful man would say anything!" cried Anson contemptuously. "Look here, sir, I've watched the Boer troubles from the first: I've seen how the English have been trying to find an excuse for seizing the two republics: I know how they got possession of the great diamond-mines by a trick arranged with the ...
— A Dash from Diamond City • George Manville Fenn

... surely come back. He knew her!—she hated to leave things unfinished. He was eager now to heap all kinds of responsibilities upon her. He would be meek and pliable; he would put no sort of obstacles in her way. She would have no excuse for giving him notice again. He would put up with all her silly ...
— Elizabeth's Campaign • Mrs. Humphry Ward

... this early period of the summer season was largely composed of the class that travels chiefly to amuse others. The commercial gentlemen in France, however, have the outward bearing of those who travel to amuse themselves. The selling of other people's goods—it is surely as good an excuse as any other for seeing the world! Such an occupation offers an orator, one gifted in conversational talents—talents it would be a pity to see buried in the domestic napkin—a ...
— In and Out of Three Normady Inns • Anna Bowman Dodd

... shows. A truculent and beady-eyed dwarf whose face hardly showed above the boards was brow-beating a cringing giant of unbelievable immensity. "You crabbed my act, you big stiff," shrilled the midget truculently—and his huge vis-a-vis fell into a volume of excuse and apology. ...
— Destiny • Charles Neville Buck

... "Then, excuse me, but where in thunder do you come from?" He halted and confronted me in the path. This was a facer, for the words "Justice of the Peace" had ...
— The Adventures of Harry Revel • Sir Arthur Thomas Quiller-Couch

... the place of his new life bearing his books, his unfinished play, and his secret sorrow with him. His books and papers were the excuse for his journey; for the rest, no one suspected nor—so thought Truedale—was any one ever to know. That part of his life-story was done with; it had been interpreted bunglingly and ignorantly to be sure, but the lesson, learned by failure, had sunk ...
— The Man Thou Gavest • Harriet T. Comstock

... disregard of the rights of property. And when armed guards were placed over the smoke-houses and barns, it was not so much because the commanding general doubted the honesty as that he knew the necessities of his troops. But even pinching hunger was not held to be an excuse for marauding expeditions. ...
— Detailed Minutiae of Soldier life in the Army of Northern Virginia, 1861-1865 • Carlton McCarthy

... now excuse myself who wont to blame, Nay, more, I prize and even hold me dear, For this fair prison, this sweet-bitter shame, Which I have borne conceal'd so many a year. O envious Fates! that rare and golden frame Rudely ye broke, where lightly twined and clear, Yarn of my bonds, the threads of world-wide ...
— The Sonnets, Triumphs, and Other Poems of Petrarch • Petrarch

... severity and discipline were at once adopted, and if this were followed by repentance which to him should appear to be sincere. When he took this high ground, as a man having authority, and as one who knew the world, he had carried Madame Staubach with him, and she had not ventured to say a word in excuse for her niece. She had promised that the severity should be at any rate forthcoming, and, if possible, the discipline. As for the repentance, that, she said meekly, must be left in the hands of God. "Ah!" said Peter, in his bitterness, "I would make her repent in sackcloth and ashes!" ...
— Linda Tressel • Anthony Trollope

... agreement with him unless he held to the treaty or exculpated himself in due form. There could be no hesitation about an answer to this demand. It is more than likely that William himself, within a short time, would have sought for some excuse to begin again his conquest of Normandy, if Robert had not furnished him this one. War was at once resolved upon, and preparations made for an immediate campaign. The most important preliminary question, both for William and for England, was that of money, and on this question the scruples ...
— The History of England From the Norman Conquest - to the Death of John (1066-1216) • George Burton Adams

... he, bowing politely. "You must excuse the unfitness of my dress to come aboard a strange ship, but really I left my own in such a hurry that I had no time to stay for a change." He had been blown out ...
— Famous Privateersmen and Adventurers of the Sea • Charles H. L. Johnston

... magistrates. He remarked:—"It would have been well if his majesty in his speech had spoken of those riots in the terms they merited. They were not riots for bread; they were not riots in the cause of liberty, which, however highly to be reprobated, had yet some excuse in their principle; they were riots of men neither aggrieved nor complaining—of men who had set on foot an indiscriminate persecution of an entire description of their fellow-citizens, including persons as eminent for their ability, as blameless ...
— The History of England in Three Volumes, Vol.III. - From George III. to Victoria • E. Farr and E. H. Nolan

... the most advantageous terms to the Prince, including an accession of territory to the NW. and W., and the possession of Spizza, a seaport, had the meeting taken place. But at the last moment the Prince evaded his share of the arrangement, on the shallow excuse that his people would not permit him to cross his own frontier. He well knew that the Sultan's representative would not demean himself by pandering to the caprices of one by rights a subject, and that the only way in which Omer Pacha ...
— Herzegovina - Or, Omer Pacha and the Christian Rebels • George Arbuthnot

... at it with great composure, and, having examined it all over, returned it to the Sub-Prior, saying at the same time, "In truth, venerable father, I cannot but marvel, that the wisdom implied alike in your silver hairs, and in your eminent rank, should, like a babbling hound, (excuse the similitude,) open thus loudly on a false scent. I were, indeed, more slight to be moved than the leaves of the aspen-tree, which wag at the least breath of heaven, could I be touched by such a trifle as this, which in no way ...
— The Monastery • Sir Walter Scott

... still seaworthy the Golden Hynde crept into Plymouth Sound, where Drake heard that the plague was in the seaport. Using this for excuse not to land until he knew his footing, he anchored behind Saint Nicholas Island and sent ...
— Days of the Discoverers • L. Lamprey



Words linked to "Excuse" :   defend, exempt, colour, free, bespeak, short letter, defense, representative, call for, request, vindication, rationalise, gloss, mitigation, condone, absolve, billet, instance, plead, extenuation, note, defence, frank, line, rationalize, support, palliate, excusatory, fend for, vindicate, apologise, color, quest, extenuate, apologize, mitigate, forgive, example, illustration



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