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Chapter 6. The Eccentric Seclusion of the Old Lady
 The conversation of Rupert Grant had two great elements of interest—first, the long fantasias of detective deduction1 in which he was engaged, and, second, his genuine romantic interest in the life of London. His brother Basil said of him: “His reasoning is particularly cold and clear, and invariably leads him wrong. But his poetry comes in abruptly3 and leads him right.” Whether this was true of Rupert as a whole, or no, it was certainly curiously4 supported by one story about him which I think worth telling.
We were walking along a lonely terrace in Brompton together. The street was full of that bright blue twilight5 which comes about half past eight in summer, and which seems for the moment to be not so much a coming of darkness as the turning on of a new azure6 illuminator7, as if the earth were lit suddenly by a sapphire8 sun. In the cool blue the lemon tint9 of the lamps had already begun to flame, and as Rupert and I passed them, Rupert talking excitedly, one after another the pale sparks sprang out of the dusk. Rupert was talking excitedly because he was trying to prove to me the nine hundred and ninety-ninth of his amateur detective theories. He would go about London, with this mad logic10 in his brain, seeing a conspiracy11 in a cab accident, and a special providence12 in a falling fusee. His suspicions at the moment were fixed13 upon an unhappy milkman who walked in front of us. So arresting were the incidents which afterwards overtook us that I am really afraid that I have forgotten what were the main outlines of the milkman's crime. I think it had something to do with the fact that he had only one small can of milk to carry, and that of that he had left the lid loose and walked so quickly that he spilled milk on the pavement. This showed that he was not thinking of his small burden, and this again showed that he anticipated some other than lacteal business at the end of his walk, and this (taken in conjunction with something about muddy boots) showed something else that I have entirely14 forgotten. I am afraid that I derided15 this detailed16 revelation unmercifully; and I am afraid that Rupert Grant, who, though the best of fellows, had a good deal of the sensitiveness of the artistic17 temperament18, slightly resented my derision. He endeavoured to take a whiff of his cigar, with the placidity19 which he associated with his profession, but the cigar, I think, was nearly bitten through.
“My dear fellow,” he said acidly, “I'll bet you half a crown that wherever that milkman comes to a real stop I'll find out something curious.”
“My resources are equal to that risk,” I said, laughing. “Done.”
We walked on for about a quarter of an hour in silence in the trail of the mysterious milkman. He walked quicker and quicker, and we had some ado to keep up with him; and every now and then he left a splash of milk, silver in the lamplight. Suddenly, almost before we could note it, he disappeared down the area steps of a house. I believe Rupert really believed that the milkman was a fairy; for a second he seemed to accept him as having vanished. Then calling something to me which somehow took no hold on my mind, he darted20 after the mystic milkman, and disappeared himself into the area.
I waited for at least five minutes, leaning against a lamp-post in the lonely street. Then the milkman came swinging up the steps without his can and hurried off clattering21 down the road. Two or three minutes more elapsed, and then Rupert came bounding up also, his face pale but yet laughing; a not uncommon22 contradiction in him, denoting excitement.
“My friend,” he said, rubbing his hands, “so much for all your scepticism. So much for your philistine23 ignorance of the possibilities of a romantic city. Two and sixpence, my boy, is the form in which your prosaic24 good nature will have to express itself.”
“What?” I said incredulously, “do you mean to say that you really did find anything the matter with the poor milkman?”
His face fell.
“Oh, the milkman,” he said, with a miserable25 affectation at having misunderstood me. “No, I—I—didn't exactly bring anything home to the milkman himself, I—”
“What did the milkman say and do?” I said, with inexorable sternness.
“Well, to tell the truth,” said Rupert, shifting restlessly from one foot to another, “the milkman himself, as far as merely physical appearances went, just said, 'Milk, Miss,' and handed in the can. That is not to say, of course, that he did not make some secret sign or some—”
I broke into a violent laugh. “You idiot,” I said, “why don't you own yourself wrong and have done with it? Why should he have made a secret sign any more than any one else? You own he said nothing and did nothing worth mentioning. You own that, don't you?”
His face grew grave.
“Well, since you ask me, I must admit that I do. It is possible that the milkman did not betray himself. It is even possible that I was wrong about him.”
“Then come along with you,” I said, with a certain amicable27 anger, “and remember that you owe me half a crown.”
“As to that, I differ from you,” said Rupert coolly. “The milkman's remarks may have been quite innocent. Even the milkman may have been. But I do not owe you half a crown. For the terms of the bet were, I think, as follows, as I propounded28 them, that wherever that milkman came to a real stop I should find out something curious.”
“Well?” I said.
“Well,” he answered, “I jolly well have. You just come with me,” and before I could speak he had turned tail once more and whisked through the blue dark into the moat or basement of the house. I followed almost before I made any decision.
When we got down into the area I felt indescribably foolish literally29, as the saying is, in a hole. There was nothing but a closed door, shuttered windows, the steps down which we had come, the ridiculous well in which I found myself, and the ridiculous man who had brought me there, and who stood there with dancing eyes. I was just about to turn back when Rupert caught me by the elbow.
“Just listen to that,” he said, and keeping my coat gripped in his right hand, he rapped with the knuckles30 of his left on the shutters31 of the basement window. His air was so definite that I paused and even inclined my head for a moment towards it. From inside was coming the murmur32 of an unmistakable human voice.
“Have you been talking to somebody inside?” I asked suddenly, turning to Rupert.
“No, I haven't,” he replied, with a grim smile, “but I should very much like to. Do you know what somebody is saying in there?”
“No, of course not,” I replied.
“Then I recommend you to listen,” said Rupert sharply.
In the dead silence of the aristocratic street at evening, I stood a moment and listened. From behind the wooden partition, in which there was a long lean crack, was coming a continuous and moaning sound which took the form of the words: “When shall I get out? When shall I get out? Will they ever let me out?” or words to that effect.
“Do you know anything about this?” I said, turning upon Rupert very abruptly.
“Perhaps you think I am the criminal,” he said sardonically33, “instead of being in some small sense the detective. I came into this area two or three minutes ago, having told you that I knew there was something funny going on, and this woman behind the shutters (for it evidently is a woman) was moaning like mad. No, my dear friend, beyond that I do not know anything about her. She is not, startling as it may seem, my disinherited daughter, or a member of my secret seraglio. But when I hear a human being wailing34 that she can't get out, and talking to herself like a mad woman and beating on the shutters with her fists, as she was doing two or three minutes ago, I think it worth mentioning, that is all.”
“My dear fellow,” I said, “I apologize; this is no time for arguing. What is to be done?”
Rupert Grant had a long clasp-knife naked and brilliant in his hand.
“First of all,” he said, “house-breaking.” And he forced the blade into the crevice35 of the wood and broke away a huge splinter, leaving a gap and glimpse of the dark window-pane inside. The room within was entirely unlighted, so that for the first few seconds the window seemed a dead and opaque36 surface, as dark as a strip of slate37. Then came a realization38 which, though in a sense gradual, made us step back and catch our breath. Two large dim human eyes were so close to us that the window itself seemed suddenly to be a mask. A pale human face was pressed against the glass within, and with increased distinctness, with the increase of the opening came the words:
“When shall I get out?”
“What can all this be?” I said.
Rupert made no answer, but lifting his walking-stick and pointing the ferrule like a fencing sword at the glass, punched a hole in it, smaller and more accurate than I should have supposed possible. The moment he had done so the voice spouted39 out of the hole, so to speak, piercing and querulous and clear, making the same demand for liberty.
“Can't you get out, madam?” I said, drawing near the hole in some perturbation.
“Get out? Of course I can't,” moaned the unknown female bitterly. “They won't let me. I told them I would be let out. I told them I'd call the police. But it's no good. Nobody knows, nobody comes. They could keep me as long as they liked only—”
I was in the very act of breaking the window finally with my stick, incensed40 with this very sinister41 mystery, when Rupert held my arm hard, held it with a curious, still, and secret rigidity42 as if he desired to stop me, but did not desire to be observed to do so. I paused a moment, and in the act swung slightly round, so that I was facing the supporting wall of the front door steps. The act froze me into a sudden stillness like that of Rupert, for a figure almost as motionless as the pillars of the portico43, but unmistakably human, had put his head out from between the doorposts and was gazing down into the area. One of the lighted lamps of the street was just behind his head, throwing it into abrupt2 darkness. Consequently, nothing whatever could be seen of his face beyond one fact, that he was unquestionably staring at us. I must say I thought Rupert's calmness magnificent. He rang the area bell quite idly, and went on talking to me with the easy end of a conversation which had never had any beginning. The black glaring figure in the portico did not stir. I almost thought it was really a statue. In another moment the grey area was golden with gaslight as the basement door was opened suddenly and a small and decorous housemaid stood in it.
“Pray excuse me,” said Rupert, in a voice which he contrived44 to make somehow or other at once affable and underbred, “but we thought perhaps that you might do something for the Waifs and Strays. We don't expect—”
“Not here,” said the small servant, with the incomparable severity of the menial of the non-philanthropic, and slammed the door in our faces.
“Very sad, very sad—the indifference45 of these people,” said the philanthropist with gravity, as we went together up the steps. As we did so the motionless figure in the portico suddenly disappeared.
“Well, what do you make of that?” asked Rupert, slapping his gloves together when we got into the street.
I do not mind admitting that I was seriously upset. Under such conditions I had but one thought.
“Don't you think,” I said a trifle timidly, “that we had better tell your brother?”
“Oh, if you like,” said Rupert, in a lordly way. “He is quite near, as I promised to meet him at Gloucester Road Station. Shall we take a cab? Perhaps, as you say, it might amuse him.”
Gloucester Road Station had, as if by accident, a somewhat deserted46 look. After a little looking about we discovered Basil Grant with his great head and his great white hat blocking the ticket-office window. I thought at first that he was taking a ticket for somewhere and being an astonishingly long time about it. As a matter of fact, he was discussing religion with the booking-office clerk, and had almost got his head through the hole in his excitement. When we dragged him away it was some time before he would talk of anything but the growth of an Oriental fatalism in modern thought, which had been well typified by some of the official's ingenious but perverse47 fallacies. At last we managed to get him to understand that we had made an astounding48 discovery. When he did listen, he listened attentively49, walking between us up and down the lamp-lit street, while we told him in a rather feverish50 duet of the great house in South Kensington, of the equivocal milkman, of the lady imprisoned51 in the basement, and the man staring from the porch. At length he said:
“If you're thinking of going back to look the thing up, you must be careful what you do. It's no good you two going there. To go twice on the same pretext52 would look dubious53. To go on a different pretext would look worse. You may be quite certain that the inquisitive54 gentleman who looked at you looked thoroughly55, and will wear, so to speak, your portraits next to his heart. If you want to find out if there is anything in this without a police raid I fancy you had better wait outside. I'll go in and see them.”
His slow and reflective walk brought us at length within sight of the house. It stood up ponderous56 and purple against the last pallor of twilight. It looked like an ogre's castle. And so apparently58 it was.
“Do you think it's safe, Basil,” said his brother, pausing, a little pale, under the lamp, “to go into that place alone? Of course we shall be near enough to hear if you yell, but these devils might do something—something sudden—or odd. I can't feel it's safe.”
“I know of nothing that is safe,” said Basil composedly, “except, possibly—death,” and he went up the steps and rang at the bell. When the massive respectable door opened for an instant, cutting a square of gaslight in the gathering59 dark, and then closed with a bang, burying our friend inside, we could not repress a shudder60. It had been like the heavy gaping61 and closing of the dim lips of some evil leviathan. A freshening night breeze began to blow up the street, and we turned up the collars of our coats. At the end of twenty minutes, in which we had scarcely moved or spoken, we were as cold as icebergs63, but more, I think, from apprehension64 than the atmosphere. Suddenly Rupert made an abrupt movement towards the house.
“I can't stand this,” he began, but almost as he spoke62 sprang back into the shadow, for the panel of gold was again cut out of the black house front, and the burly figure of Basil was silhouetted65 against it coming out. He was roaring with laughter and talking so loudly that you could have heard every syllable66 across the street. Another voice, or, possibly, two voices, were laughing and talking back at him from within.
“No, no, no,” Basil was calling out, with a sort of hilarious67 hostility68. “That's quite wrong. That's the most ghastly heresy69 of all. It's the soul, my dear chap, the soul that's the arbiter70 of cosmic forces. When you see a cosmic force you don't like, trick it, my boy. But I must really be off.”
“Come and pitch into us again,” came the laughing voice from out of the house. “We still have some bones unbroken.”
“Thanks very much, I will—good night,” shouted Grant, who had by this time reached the street.
“Good night,” came the friendly call in reply, before the door closed.
“Basil,” said Rupert Grant, in a hoarse71 whisper, “what are we to do?”
The elder brother looked thoughtfully from one of us to the other.
“What is to be done, Basil?” I repeated in uncontrollable excitement.
“I'm not sure,” said Basil doubtfully. “What do you say to getting some dinner somewhere and going to the Court Theatre tonight? I tried to get those fellows to come, but they couldn't.”
We stared blankly.
“Go to the Court Theatre?” repeated Rupert. “What would be the good of that?”
“Good? What do you mean?” answered Basil, staring also. “Have you turned Puritan or Passive Resister, or something? For fun, of course.”
“But, great God in Heaven! What are we going to do, I mean!” cried Rupert. “What about the poor woman locked up in that house? Shall I go for the police?”
Basil's face cleared with immediate72 comprehension, and he laughed.
“Oh, that,” he said. “I'd forgotten that. That's all right. Some mistake, possibly. Or some quite trifling73 private affair. But I'm sorry those fellows couldn't come with us. Shall we take one of these green omnibuses? There is a restaurant in Sloane Square.”
“I sometimes think you play the fool to frighten us,” I said irritably74. “How can we leave that woman locked up? How can it be a mere26 private affair? How can crime and kidnapping and murder, for all I know, be private affairs? If you found a corpse75 in a man's drawing-room, would you think it bad taste to talk about it just as if it was a confounded dado or an infernal etching?”
Basil laughed heartily76.
“That's very forcible,” he said. “As a matter of fact, though, I know it's all right in this case. And there comes the green omnibus.”
“How do you know it's all right in this ease?” persisted his brother angrily.
“My dear chap, the thing's obvious,” answered Basil, holding a return ticket between his teeth while he fumbled77 in his waistcoat pocket. “Those two fellows never committed a crime in their lives. They're not the kind. Have either of you chaps got a halfpenny? I want to get a paper before the omnibus comes.”
“Oh, curse the paper!” cried Rupert, in a fury. “Do you mean to tell me, Basil Grant, that you are going to leave a fellow creature in pitch darkness in a private dungeon78, because you've had ten minutes' talk with the keepers of it and thought them rather good men?”
“Good men do commit crimes sometimes,” said Basil, taking the ticket out of his mouth. “But this kind of good man doesn't commit that kind of crime. Well, shall we get on this omnibus?”
The great green vehicle was indeed plunging79 and lumbering80 along the dim wide street towards us. Basil had stepped from the curb81, and for an instant it was touch and go whether we should all have leaped on to it and been borne away to the restaurant and the theatre.
“Basil,” I said, taking him firmly by the shoulder, “I simply won't leave this street and this house.”
“Nor will I,” said Rupert, glaring at it and biting his fingers. “There's some black work going on there. If I left it I should never sleep again.”
Basil Grant looked at us both seriously.
“Of course if you feel like that,” he said, “we'll investigate further. You'll find it's all right, though. They're only two young Oxford82 fellows. Extremely nice, too, though rather infected with this pseudo-Darwinian business. Ethics83 of evolution and all that.”
“I think,” said Rupert darkly, ringing the bell, “that we shall enlighten you further about their ethics.”
“And may I ask,” said Basil gloomily, “what it is that you propose to do?”
“I propose, first of all,” said Rupert, “to get into this house; secondly84, to have a look at these nice young Oxford men; thirdly, to knock them down, bind85 them, gag them, and search the house.”
Basil stared indignantly for a few minutes. Then he was shaken for an instant with one of his sudden laughs.
“Poor little boys,” he said. “But it almost serves them right for holding such silly views, after all,” and he quaked again with amusement “there's something confoundedly Darwinian about it.”
“I suppose you mean to help us?” said Rupert.
“Oh, yes, I'll be in it,” answered Basil, “if it's only to prevent your doing the poor chaps any harm.”
He was standing86 in the rear of our little procession, looking indifferent and sometimes even sulky, but somehow the instant the door opened he stepped first into the hall, glowing with urbanity.
“So sorry to haunt you like this,” he said. “I met two friends outside who very much want to know you. May I bring them in?”
“Delighted, of course,” said a young voice, the unmistakable voice of the Isis, and I realized that the door had been opened, not by the decorous little servant girl, but by one of our hosts in person. He was a short, but shapely young gentleman, with curly dark hair and a square, snub-nosed face. He wore slippers87 and a sort of blazer of some incredible college purple.
“This way,” he said; “mind the steps by the staircase. This house is more crooked88 and old-fashioned than you would think from its snobbish89 exterior90. There are quite a lot of odd corners in the place really.”
“That,” said Rupert, with a savage91 smile, “I can quite believe.”
We were by this time in the study or back parlour, used by the young inhabitants as a sitting-room92, an apartment littered with magazines and books ranging from Dante to detective stories. The other youth, who stood with his back to the fire smoking a corncob, was big and burly, with dead brown hair brushed forward and a Norfolk jacket. He was that particular type of man whose every feature and action is heavy and clumsy, and yet who is, you would say, rather exceptionally a gentleman.
“Any more arguments?” he said, when introductions had been effected. “I must say, Mr Grant, you were rather severe upon eminent93 men of science such as we. I've half a mind to chuck my D.Sc. and turn minor94 poet.”
“Bosh,” answered Grant. “I never said a word against eminent men of science. What I complain of is a vague popular philosophy which supposes itself to be scientific when it is really nothing but a sort of new religion and an uncommonly95 nasty one. When people talked about the fall of man they knew they were talking about a mystery, a thing they didn't understand. Now that they talk about the survival of the fittest they think they do understand it, whereas they have not merely no notion, they have an elaborately false notion of what the words mean. The Darwinian movement has made no difference to mankind, except that, instead of talking unphilosophically about philosophy, they now talk unscientifically about science.”
“That is all very well,” said the big young man, whose name appeared to be Burrows97. “Of course, in a sense, science, like mathematics or the violin, can only be perfectly98 understood by specialists. Still, the rudiments99 may be of public use. Greenwood here,” indicating the little man in the blazer, “doesn't know one note of music from another. Still, he knows something. He knows enough to take off his hat when they play 'God Save the King'. He doesn't take it off by mistake when they play 'Oh, Dem Golden Slippers'. Just in the same way science—”
Here Mr Burrows stopped abruptly. He was interrupted by an argument uncommon in philosophical96 controversy100 and perhaps not wholly legitimate101. Rupert Grant had bounded on him from behind, flung an arm round his throat, and bent102 the giant backwards103.
“Knock the other fellow down, Swinburne,” he called out, and before I knew where I was I was locked in a grapple with the man in the purple blazer. He was a wiry fighter, who bent and sprang like a whalebone, but I was heavier and had taken him utterly104 by surprise. I twitched105 one of his feet from under him; he swung for a moment on the single foot, and then we fell with a crash amid the litter of newspapers, myself on top.
My attention for a moment released by victory, I could hear Basil's voice finishing some long sentence of which I had not heard the beginning.
“... wholly, I must confess, unintelligible106 to me, my dear sir, and I need not say unpleasant. Still one must side with one's old friends against the most fascinating new ones. Permit me, therefore, in tying you up in this antimacassar, to make it as commodious107 as handcuffs can reasonably be while...”
I had staggered to my feet. The gigantic Burrows was toiling108 in the garotte of Rupert, while Basil was striving to master his mighty109 hands. Rupert and Basil were both particularly strong, but so was Mr Burrows; how strong, we knew a second afterwards. His head was held back by Rupert's arm, but a convulsive heave went over his whole frame. An instant after his head plunged110 forward like a bull's, and Rupert Grant was slung111 head over heels, a catherine wheel of legs, on the floor in front of him. Simultaneously112 the bull's head butted113 Basil in the chest, bringing him also to the ground with a crash, and the monster, with a Berserker roar, leaped at me and knocked me into the corner of the room, smashing the waste-paper basket. The bewildered Greenwood sprang furiously to his feet. Basil did the same. But they had the best of it now.
Greenwood dashed to the bell and pulled it violently, sending peals114 through the great house. Before I could get panting to my feet, and before Rupert, who had been literally stunned115 for a few moments, could even lift his head from the floor, two footmen were in the room. Defeated even when we were in a majority, we were now outnumbered. Greenwood and one of the footmen flung themselves upon me, crushing me back into the corner upon the wreck116 of the paper basket. The other two flew at Basil, and pinned him against the wall. Rupert lifted himself on his elbow, but he was still dazed.
In the strained silence of our helplessness I heard the voice of Basil come with a loud incongruous cheerfulness.
“Now this,” he said, “is what I call enjoying oneself.”
I caught a glimpse of his face, flushed and forced against the bookcase, from between the swaying limbs of my captors and his. To my astonishment117 his eyes were really brilliant with pleasure, like those of a child heated by a favourite game.
I made several apoplectic118 efforts to rise, but the servant was on top of me so heavily that Greenwood could afford to leave me to him. He turned quickly to come to reinforce the two who were mastering Basil. The latter's head was already sinking lower and lower, like a leaking ship, as his enemies pressed him down. He flung up one hand just as I thought him falling and hung on to a huge tome in the bookcase, a volume, I afterwards discovered, of St Chrysostom's theology. Just as Greenwood bounded across the room towards the group, Basil plucked the ponderous tome bodily out of the shelf, swung it, and sent it spinning through the air, so that it struck Greenwood flat in the face and knocked him over like a rolling ninepin. At the same instant Basil's stiffness broke, and he sank, his enemies closing over him.
Rupert's head was clear, but his body shaken; he was hanging as best he could on to the half-prostrate119 Greenwood. They were rolling over each other on the floor, both somewhat enfeebled by their falls, but Rupert certainly the more so. I was still successfully held down. The floor was a sea of torn and trampled120 papers and magazines, like an immense waste-paper basket. Burrows and his companion were almost up to the knees in them, as in a drift of dead leaves. And Greenwood had his leg stuck right through a sheet of the Pall57 Mall Gazette, which clung to it ludicrously, like some fantastic trouser frill.
Basil, shut from me in a human prison, a prison of powerful bodies, might be dead for all I knew. I fancied, however, that the broad back of Mr Burrows, which was turned towards me, had a certain bend of effort in it as if my friend still needed some holding down. Suddenly that broad back swayed hither and thither121. It was swaying on one leg; Basil, somehow, had hold of the other. Burrows' huge fists and those of the footman were battering122 Basil's sunken head like an anvil123, but nothing could get the giant's ankle out of his sudden and savage grip. While his own head was forced slowly down in darkness and great pain, the right leg of his captor was being forced in the air. Burrows swung to and fro with a purple face. Then suddenly the floor and the walls and the ceiling shook together, as the colossus fell, all his length seeming to fill the floor. Basil sprang up with dancing eyes, and with three blows like battering-rams knocked the footman into a cocked hat. Then he sprang on top of Burrows, with one antimacassar in his hand and another in his teeth, and bound him hand and foot almost before he knew clearly that his head had struck the floor. Then Basil sprang at Greenwood, whom Rupert was struggling to hold down, and between them they secured him easily. The man who had hold of me let go and turned to his rescue, but I leaped up like a spring released, and, to my infinite satisfaction, knocked the fellow down. The other footman, bleeding at the mouth and quite demoralized, was stumbling out of the room. My late captor, without a word, slunk after him, seeing that the battle was won. Rupert was sitting astride the pinioned124 Mr Greenwood, Basil astride the pinioned Mr Burrows.
To my surprise the latter gentleman, lying bound on his back, spoke in a perfectly calm voice to the man who sat on top of him.
“And now, gentlemen,” he said, “since you have got your own way, perhaps you wouldn't mind telling us what the deuce all this is?”
“This,” said Basil, with a radiant face, looking down at his captive, “this is what we call the survival of the fittest.”
Rupert, who had been steadily125 collecting himself throughout the latter phases of the fight, was intellectually altogether himself again at the end of it. Springing up from the prostrate Greenwood, and knotting a handkerchief round his left hand, which was bleeding from a blow, he sang out quite coolly:
“Basil, will you mount guard over the captive of your bow and spear and antimacassar? Swinburne and I will clear out the prison downstairs.”
“All right,” said Basil, rising also and seating himself in a leisured way in an armchair. “Don't hurry for us,” he said, glancing round at the litter of the room, “we have all the illustrated126 papers.”
Rupert lurched thoughtfully out of the room, and I followed him even more slowly; in fact, I lingered long enough to hear, as I passed through the room, the passages and the kitchen stairs, Basil's voice continuing conversationally127:
“And now, Mr Burrows,” he said, settling himself sociably128 in the chair, “there's no reason why we shouldn't go on with that amusing argument. I'm sorry that you have to express yourself lying on your back on the floor, and, as I told you before, I've no more notion why you are there than the man in the moon. A conversationalist like yourself, however, can scarcely be seriously handicapped by any bodily posture129. You were saying, if I remember right, when this incidental fracas130 occurred, that the rudiments of science might with advantage be made public.”
“Precisely,” said the large man on the floor in an easy tone. “I hold that nothing more than a rough sketch131 of the universe as seen by science can be...”
And here the voices died away as we descended132 into the basement. I noticed that Mr Greenwood did not join in the amicable controversy. Strange as it may appear, I think he looked back upon our proceedings133 with a slight degree of resentment134. Mr Burrows, however, was all philosophy and chattiness. We left them, as I say, together, and sank deeper and deeper into the under-world of that mysterious house, which, perhaps, appeared to us somewhat more Tartarean than it really was, owing to our knowledge of its semi-criminal mystery and of the human secret locked below.
The basement floor had several doors, as is usual in such a house; doors that would naturally lead to the kitchen, the scullery, the pantry, the servants' hall, and so on. Rupert flung open all the doors with indescribable rapidity. Four out of the five opened on entirely empty apartments. The fifth was locked. Rupert broke the door in like a bandbox, and we fell into the sudden blackness of the sealed, unlighted room.
Rupert stood on the threshold, and called out like a man calling into an abyss:
“Whoever you are, come out. You are free. The people who held you captive are captives themselves. We heard you crying and we came to deliver you. We have bound your enemies upstairs hand and foot. You are free.”
For some seconds after he had spoken into the darkness there was a dead silence in it. Then there came a kind of muttering and moaning. We might easily have taken it for the wind or rats if we had not happened to have heard it before. It was unmistakably the voice of the imprisoned woman, drearily135 demanding liberty, just as we had heard her demand it.
“Has anybody got a match?” said Rupert grimly. “I fancy we have come pretty near the end of this business.”
I struck a match and held it up. It revealed a large, bare, yellow-papered apartment with a dark-clad figure at the other end of it near the window. An instant after it burned my fingers and dropped, leaving darkness. It had, however, revealed something more practical—an iron gas bracket just above my head. I struck another match and lit the gas. And we found ourselves suddenly and seriously in the presence of the captive.
At a sort of workbox in the window of this subterranean136 breakfast-room sat an elderly lady with a singularly high colour and almost startling silver hair. She had, as if designedly to relieve these effects, a pair of Mephistophelian black eyebrows137 and a very neat black dress. The glare of the gas lit up her piquant138 hair and face perfectly against the brown background of the shutters. The background was blue and not brown in one place; at the place where Rupert's knife had torn a great opening in the wood about an hour before.
“Madam,” said he, advancing with a gesture of the hat, “permit me to have the pleasure of announcing to you that you are free. Your complaints happened to strike our ears as we passed down the street, and we have therefore ventured to come to your rescue.”
The old lady with the red face and the black eyebrows looked at us for a moment with something of the apoplectic stare of a parrot. Then she said, with a sudden gust139 or breathing of relief:
“Rescue? Where is Mr Greenwood? Where is Mr Burrows? Did you say you had rescued me?”
“Yes, madam,” said Rupert, with a beaming condescension140. “We have very satisfactorily dealt with Mr Greenwood and Mr Burrows. We have settled affairs with them very satisfactorily.”
The old lady rose from her chair and came very quickly towards us.
“What did you say to them? How did you persuade them?” she cried.
“We persuaded them, my dear madam,” said Rupert, laughing, “by knocking them down and tying them up. But what is the matter?”
To the surprise of every one the old lady walked slowly back to her seat by the window.
“Do I understand,” she said, with the air of a person about to begin knitting, “that you have knocked down Mr Burrows and tied him up?”
“We have,” said Rupert proudly; “we have resisted their oppression and conquered it.”
“Oh, thanks,” answered the old lady, and sat down by the window.
A considerable pause followed.
“The road is quite clear for you, madam,” said Rupert pleasantly.
The old lady rose, cocking her black eyebrows and her silver crest141 at us for an instant.
“But what about Greenwood and Burrows?” she said. “What did I understand you to say had become of them?”
“They are lying on the floor upstairs,” said Rupert, chuckling142. “Tied hand and foot.”
“Well, that settles it,” said the old lady, coming with a kind of bang into her seat again, “I must stop where I am.”
Rupert looked bewildered.
“Stop where you are?” he said. “Why should you stop any longer where you are? What power can force you now to stop in this miserable cell?”
“The question rather is,” said the old lady, with composure, “what power can force me to go anywhere else?”
We both stared wildly at her and she stared tranquilly143 at us both.
At last I said, “Do you really mean to say that we are to leave you here?”
“I suppose you don't intend to tie me up,” she said, “and carry me off? I certainly shall not go otherwise.”
“But, my dear madam,” cried out Rupert, in a radiant exasperation144, “we heard you with our own ears crying because you could not get out.”
“Eavesdroppers often hear rather misleading things,” replied the captive grimly. “I suppose I did break down a bit and lose my temper and talk to myself. But I have some sense of honour for all that.”
“Some sense of honour?” repeated Rupert, and the last light of intelligence died out of his face, leaving it the face of an idiot with rolling eyes.
He moved vaguely145 towards the door and I followed. But I turned yet once more in the toils146 of my conscience and curiosity. “Can we do nothing for you, madam?” I said forlornly.
“Why,” said the lady, “if you are particularly anxious to do me a little favour you might untie147 the gentlemen upstairs.”
Rupert plunged heavily up the kitchen staircase, shaking it with his vague violence. With mouth open to speak he stumbled to the door of the sitting-room and scene of battle.
“Theoretically speaking, that is no doubt true,” Mr Burrows was saying, lying on his back and arguing easily with Basil; “but we must consider the matter as it appears to our sense. The origin of morality...”
“Basil,” cried Rupert, gasping148, “she won't come out.”
“Who won't come out?” asked Basil, a little cross at being interrupted in an argument.
“The lady downstairs,” replied Rupert. “The lady who was locked up. She won't come out. And she says that all she wants is for us to let these fellows loose.”
“And a jolly sensible suggestion,” cried Basil, and with a bound he was on top of the prostrate Burrows once more and was unknotting his bonds with hands and teeth.
“A brilliant idea. Swinburne, just undo149 Mr Greenwood.”
In a dazed and automatic way I released the little gentleman in the purple jacket, who did not seem to regard any of the proceedings as particularly sensible or brilliant. The gigantic Burrows, on the other hand, was heaving with herculean laughter.
“Well,” said Basil, in his cheeriest way, “I think we must be getting away. We've so much enjoyed our evening. Far too much regard for you to stand on ceremony. If I may so express myself, we've made ourselves at home. Good night. Thanks so much. Come along, Rupert.”
“Basil,” said Rupert desperately150, “for God's sake come and see what you can make of the woman downstairs. I can't get the discomfort151 out of my mind. I admit that things look as if we had made a mistake. But these gentlemen won't mind perhaps...”
“No, no,” cried Burrows, with a sort of Rabelaisian uproariousness. “No, no, look in the pantry, gentlemen. Examine the coal-hole. Make a tour of the chimneys. There are corpses152 all over the house, I assure you.”
This adventure of ours was destined153 to differ in one respect from others which I have narrated154. I had been through many wild days with Basil Grant, days for the first half of which the sun and the moon seemed to have gone mad. But it had almost invariably happened that towards the end of the day and its adventure things had cleared themselves like the sky after rain, and a luminous155 and quiet meaning had gradually dawned upon me. But this day's work was destined to end in confusion worse confounded. Before we left that house, ten minutes afterwards, one half-witted touch was added which rolled all our minds in cloud. If Rupert's head had suddenly fallen off on the floor, if wings had begun to sprout156 out of Greenwood's shoulders, we could scarcely have been more suddenly stricken. And yet of this we had no explanation. We had to go to bed that night with the prodigy157 and get up next morning with it and let it stand in our memories for weeks and months. As will be seen, it was not until months afterwards that by another accident and in another way it was explained. For the present I only state what happened.
When all five of us went down the kitchen stairs again, Rupert leading, the two hosts bringing up the rear, we found the door of the prison again closed. Throwing it open we found the place again as black as pitch. The old lady, if she was still there, had turned out the gas: she seemed to have a weird158 preference for sitting in the dark.
Without another word Rupert lit the gas again. The little old lady turned her bird-like head as we all stumbled forward in the strong gaslight. Then, with a quickness that almost made me jump, she sprang up and swept a sort of old-fashioned curtsey or reverence159. I looked quickly at Greenwood and Burrows, to whom it was natural to suppose this subservience160 had been offered. I felt irritated at what was implied in this subservience, and desired to see the faces of the tyrants161 as they received it. To my surprise they did not seem to have seen it at all: Burrows was paring his nails with a small penknife. Greenwood was at the back of the group and had hardly entered the room. And then an amazing fact became apparent. It was Basil Grant who stood foremost of the group, the golden gaslight lighting162 up his strong face and figure. His face wore an expression indescribably conscious, with the suspicion of a very grave smile. His head was slightly bent with a restrained bow. It was he who had acknowledged the lady's obeisance163. And it was he, beyond any shadow of reasonable doubt, to whom it had really been directed.
“So I hear,” he said, in a kindly164 yet somehow formal voice, “I hear, madam, that my friends have been trying to rescue you. But without success.”
“No one, naturally, knows my faults better than you,” answered the lady with a high colour. “But you have not found me guilty of treachery.”
“I willingly attest165 it, madam,” replied Basil, in the same level tones, “and the fact is that I am so much gratified with your exhibition of loyalty166 that I permit myself the pleasure of exercising some very large discretionary powers. You would not leave this room at the request of these gentlemen. But you know that you can safely leave it at mine.”
The captive made another reverence. “I have never complained of your injustice,” she said. “I need scarcely say what I think of your generosity167.”
And before our staring eyes could blink she had passed out of the room, Basil holding the door open for her.
He turned to Greenwood with a relapse into joviality168. “This will be a relief to you,” he said.
“Yes, it will,” replied that immovable young gentleman with a face like a sphinx.
We found ourselves outside in the dark blue night, shaken and dazed as if we had fallen into it from some high tower.
“Basil,” said Rupert at last, in a weak voice, “I always thought you were my brother. But are you a man? I mean—are you only a man?”
“At present,” replied Basil, “my mere humanity is proved by one of the most unmistakable symbols—hunger. We are too late for the theatre in Sloane Square. But we are not too late for the restaurant. Here comes the green omnibus!” and he had leaped on it before we could speak. ————————————————————————————————————
As I said, it was months after that Rupert Grant suddenly entered my room, swinging a satchel169 in his hand and with a general air of having jumped over the garden wall, and implored170 me to go with him upon the latest and wildest of his expeditions. He proposed to himself no less a thing than the discovery of the actual origin, whereabouts, and headquarters of the source of all our joys and sorrows—the Club of Queer Trades. I should expand this story for ever if I explained how ultimately we ran this strange entity171 to its lair172. The process meant a hundred interesting things. The tracking of a member, the bribing173 of a cabman, the fighting of roughs, the lifting of a paving stone, the finding of a cellar, the finding of a cellar below the cellar, the finding of the subterranean passage, the finding of the Club of Queer Trades.
I have had many strange experiences in my life, but never a stranger one than that I felt when I came out of those rambling174, sightless, and seemingly hopeless passages into the sudden splendour of a sumptuous175 and hospitable176 dining-room, surrounded upon almost every side by faces that I knew. There was Mr Montmorency, the Arboreal177 House-Agent, seated between the two brisk young men who were occasionally vicars, and always Professional Detainers. There was Mr P. G. Northover, founder178 of the Adventure and Romance Agency. There was Professor Chadd, who invented the Dancing Language.
As we entered, all the members seemed to sink suddenly into their chairs, and with the very action the vacancy179 of the presidential seat gaped180 at us like a missing tooth.
“The president's not here,” said Mr P. G. Northover, turning suddenly to Professor Chadd.
“N-no,” said the philosopher, with more than his ordinary vagueness. “I can't imagine where he is.”
“Good heavens,” said Mr Montmorency, jumping up, “I really feel a little nervous. I'll go and see.” And he ran out of the room.
An instant after he ran back again, twittering with a timid ecstasy181.
“He's there, gentlemen—he's there all right—he's coming in now,” he cried, and sat down. Rupert and I could hardly help feeling the beginnings of a sort of wonder as to who this person might be who was the first member of this insane brotherhood182. Who, we thought indistinctly, could be maddest in this world of madmen: what fantastic was it whose shadow filled all these fantastics with so loyal an expectation?
Suddenly we were answered. The door flew open and the room was filled and shaken with a shout, in the midst of which Basil Grant, smiling and in evening dress, took his seat at the head of the table.
How we ate that dinner I have no idea. In the common way I am a person particularly prone183 to enjoy the long luxuriance of the club dinner. But on this occasion it seemed a hopeless and endless string of courses. Hors-d'oeuvre sardines184 seemed as big as herrings, soup seemed a sort of ocean, larks185 were ducks, ducks were ostriches186 until that dinner was over. The cheese course was maddening. I had often heard of the moon being made of green cheese. That night I thought the green cheese was made of the moon. And all the time Basil Grant went on laughing and eating and drinking, and never threw one glance at us to tell us why he was there, the king of these capering187 idiots.
At last came the moment which I knew must in some way enlighten us, the time of the club speeches and the club toasts. Basil Grant rose to his feet amid a surge of songs and cheers.
“Gentlemen,” he said, “it is a custom in this society that the president for the year opens the proceedings not by any general toast of sentiment, but by calling upon each member to give a brief account of his trade. We then drink to that calling and to all who follow it. It is my business, as the senior member, to open by stating my claim to membership of this club. Years ago, gentlemen, I was a judge; I did my best in that capacity to do justice and to administer the law. But it gradually dawned on me that in my work, as it was, I was not touching188 even the fringe of justice. I was seated in the seat of the mighty, I was robed in scarlet189 and ermine; nevertheless, I held a small and lowly and futile190 post. I had to go by a mean rule as much as a postman, and my red and gold was worth no more than his. Daily there passed before me taut191 and passionate192 problems, the stringency193 of which I had to pretend to relieve by silly imprisonments or silly damages, while I knew all the time, by the light of my living common sense, that they would have been far better relieved by a kiss or a thrashing, or a few words of explanation, or a duel194, or a tour in the West Highlands. Then, as this grew on me, there grew on me continuously the sense of a mountainous frivolity195. Every word said in the court, a whisper or an oath, seemed more connected with life than the words I had to say. Then came the time when I publicly blasphemed the whole bosh, was classed as a madman and melted from public life.”
Something in the atmosphere told me that it was not only Rupert and I who were listening with intensity196 to this statement.
“Well, I discovered that I could be of no real use. I offered myself privately197 as a purely198 moral judge to settle purely moral differences. Before very long these unofficial courts of honour (kept strictly199 secret) had spread over the whole of society. People were tried before me not for the practical trifles for which nobody cares, such as committing a murder, or keeping a dog without a licence. My criminals were tried for the faults which really make social life impossible. They were tried before me for selfishness, or for an impossible vanity, or for scandalmongering, or for stinginess to guests or dependents. Of course these courts had no sort of real coercive powers. The fulfilment of their punishments rested entirely on the honour of the ladies and gentlemen involved, including the honour of the culprits. But you would be amazed to know how completely our orders were always obeyed. Only lately I had a most pleasing example. A maiden200 lady in South Kensington whom I had condemned201 to solitary202 confinement203 for being the means of breaking off an engagement through backbiting204, absolutely refused to leave her prison, although some well-meaning persons had been inopportune enough to rescue her.”
Rupert Grant was staring at his brother, his mouth fallen agape. So, for the matter of that, I expect, was I. This, then, was the explanation of the old lady's strange discontent and her still stranger content with her lot. She was one of the culprits of his Voluntary Criminal Court. She was one of the clients of his Queer Trade.
We were still dazed when we drank, amid a crash of glasses, the health of Basil's new judiciary. We had only a confused sense of everything having been put right, the sense men will have when they come into the presence of God. We dimly heard Basil say:
“Mr P. G. Northover will now explain the Adventure and Romance Agency.”
And we heard equally dimly Northover beginning the statement he had made long ago to Major Brown. Thus our epic205 ended where it had begun, like a true cycle.
The Napoleon of Notting Hill


1 deduction 0xJx7     
  • No deduction in pay is made for absence due to illness.因病请假不扣工资。
  • His deduction led him to the correct conclusion.他的推断使他得出正确的结论。
2 abrupt 2fdyh     
  • The river takes an abrupt bend to the west.这河突然向西转弯。
  • His abrupt reply hurt our feelings.他粗鲁的回答伤了我们的感情。
3 abruptly iINyJ     
  • He gestured abruptly for Virginia to get in the car.他粗鲁地示意弗吉尼亚上车。
  • I was abruptly notified that a half-hour speech was expected of me.我突然被通知要讲半个小时的话。
4 curiously 3v0zIc     
  • He looked curiously at the people.他好奇地看着那些人。
  • He took long stealthy strides. His hands were curiously cold.他迈着悄没声息的大步。他的双手出奇地冷。
5 twilight gKizf     
  • Twilight merged into darkness.夕阳的光辉融于黑暗中。
  • Twilight was sweet with the smell of lilac and freshly turned earth.薄暮充满紫丁香和新翻耕的泥土的香味。
6 azure 6P3yh     
  • His eyes are azure.他的眼睛是天蓝色的。
  • The sun shone out of a clear azure sky.清朗蔚蓝的天空中阳光明媚。
7 illuminator 00cf4ea4f526906db990a0971f79cd03     
  • But on the low position illuminator becomes another questionable point to be. 而低位反光板上成为另一个疑点所在。 来自互联网
  • The Illuminator must find his sister in the dark. 点灯人需要在黑暗中找到他的妹妹。 来自互联网
8 sapphire ETFzw     
  • Now let us consider crystals such as diamond or sapphire.现在让我们考虑象钻石和蓝宝石这样的晶体。
  • He left a sapphire ring to her.他留给她一枚蓝宝石戒指。
9 tint ZJSzu     
  • You can't get up that naturalness and artless rosy tint in after days.你今后不再会有这种自然和朴实无华的红润脸色。
  • She gave me instructions on how to apply the tint.她告诉我如何使用染发剂。
10 logic j0HxI     
  • What sort of logic is that?这是什么逻辑?
  • I don't follow the logic of your argument.我不明白你的论点逻辑性何在。
11 conspiracy NpczE     
  • The men were found guilty of conspiracy to murder.这些人被裁决犯有阴谋杀人罪。
  • He claimed that it was all a conspiracy against him.他声称这一切都是一场针对他的阴谋。
12 providence 8tdyh     
  • It is tempting Providence to go in that old boat.乘那艘旧船前往是冒大险。
  • To act as you have done is to fly in the face of Providence.照你的所作所为那样去行事,是违背上帝的意志的。
13 fixed JsKzzj     
  • Have you two fixed on a date for the wedding yet?你们俩选定婚期了吗?
  • Once the aim is fixed,we should not change it arbitrarily.目标一旦确定,我们就不应该随意改变。
14 entirely entirely     
  • The fire was entirely caused by their neglect of duty. 那场火灾完全是由于他们失职而引起的。
  • His life was entirely given up to the educational work. 他的一生统统献给了教育工作。
15 derided 1f15d33e96bce4cf40473b17affb79b6     
v.取笑,嘲笑( deride的过去式和过去分词 )
  • His views were derided as old-fashioned. 他的观点被当作旧思想受到嘲弄。
  • Gazing up to the darkness I saw myself as a creature driven and derided by vanity. 我抬头疑视着黑暗,感到自己是一个被虚荣心驱使和拨弄的可怜虫。 来自辞典例句
16 detailed xuNzms     
  • He had made a detailed study of the terrain.他对地形作了缜密的研究。
  • A detailed list of our publications is available on request.我们的出版物有一份详细的目录备索。
17 artistic IeWyG     
  • The picture on this screen is a good artistic work.这屏风上的画是件很好的艺术品。
  • These artistic handicrafts are very popular with foreign friends.外国朋友很喜欢这些美术工艺品。
18 temperament 7INzf     
  • The analysis of what kind of temperament you possess is vital.分析一下你有什么样的气质是十分重要的。
  • Success often depends on temperament.成功常常取决于一个人的性格。
19 placidity GNtxU     
  • Miss Pross inquired,with placidity.普洛丝小姐不动声色地问。
  • The swift and indifferent placidity of that look troubled me.那一扫而过的冷漠沉静的目光使我深感不安。
20 darted d83f9716cd75da6af48046d29f4dd248     
v.投掷,投射( dart的过去式和过去分词 );向前冲,飞奔
  • The lizard darted out its tongue at the insect. 蜥蜴伸出舌头去吃小昆虫。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The old man was displeased and darted an angry look at me. 老人不高兴了,瞪了我一眼。 来自《简明英汉词典》
21 clattering f876829075e287eeb8e4dc1cb4972cc5     
  • Typewriters keep clattering away. 打字机在不停地嗒嗒作响。
  • The typewriter was clattering away. 打字机啪嗒啪嗒地响着。
22 uncommon AlPwO     
  • Such attitudes were not at all uncommon thirty years ago.这些看法在30年前很常见。
  • Phil has uncommon intelligence.菲尔智力超群。
23 philistine 1A2yG     
  • I believe he seriously thinks me an awful Philistine.我相信,他真的认为我是个不可救药的庸人。
  • Do you know what a philistine is,jim?吉姆,知道什么是庸俗吗?
24 prosaic i0szo     
  • The truth is more prosaic.真相更加乏味。
  • It was a prosaic description of the scene.这是对场景没有想象力的一个描述。
25 miserable g18yk     
  • It was miserable of you to make fun of him.你取笑他,这是可耻的。
  • Her past life was miserable.她过去的生活很苦。
26 mere rC1xE     
  • That is a mere repetition of what you said before.那不过是重复了你以前讲的话。
  • It's a mere waste of time waiting any longer.再等下去纯粹是浪费时间。
27 amicable Qexyu     
  • The two nations reached an amicable agreement.两国达成了一项友好协议。
  • The two nations settled their quarrel in an amicable way.两国以和睦友好的方式解决了他们的争端。
28 propounded 3fbf8014080aca42e6c965ec77e23826     
v.提出(问题、计划等)供考虑[讨论],提议( propound的过去式和过去分词 )
  • the theory of natural selection, first propounded by Charles Darwin 查尔斯∙达尔文首先提出的物竞天择理论
  • Indeed it was first propounded by the ubiquitous Thomas Young. 实际上,它是由尽人皆知的杨氏首先提出来的。 来自辞典例句
29 literally 28Wzv     
  • He translated the passage literally.他逐字逐句地翻译这段文字。
  • Sometimes she would not sit down till she was literally faint.有时候,她不走到真正要昏厥了,决不肯坐下来。
30 knuckles c726698620762d88f738be4a294fae79     
n.(指人)指关节( knuckle的名词复数 );(指动物)膝关节,踝v.(指人)指关节( knuckle的第三人称单数 );(指动物)膝关节,踝
  • He gripped the wheel until his knuckles whitened. 他紧紧握住方向盘,握得指关节都变白了。
  • Her thin hands were twisted by swollen knuckles. 她那双纤手因肿大的指关节而变了形。 来自《简明英汉词典》
31 shutters 74d48a88b636ca064333022eb3458e1f     
百叶窗( shutter的名词复数 ); (照相机的)快门
  • The shop-front is fitted with rolling shutters. 那商店的店门装有卷门。
  • The shutters thumped the wall in the wind. 在风中百叶窗砰砰地碰在墙上。
32 murmur EjtyD     
  • They paid the extra taxes without a murmur.他们毫无怨言地交了附加税。
  • There was a low murmur of conversation in the hall.大厅里有窃窃私语声。
33 sardonically e99a8f28f1ae62681faa2bef336b5366     
  • Some say sardonically that combat pay is good and that one can do quite well out of this war. 有些人讽刺地说战地的薪饷很不错,人们可借这次战争赚到很多钱。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Tu Wei-yueh merely drew himself up and smiled sardonically. 屠维岳把胸脯更挺得直些,微微冷笑。 来自子夜部分
34 wailing 25fbaeeefc437dc6816eab4c6298b423     
v.哭叫,哀号( wail的现在分词 );沱
  • A police car raced past with its siren wailing. 一辆警车鸣着警报器飞驰而过。
  • The little girl was wailing miserably. 那小女孩难过得号啕大哭。
35 crevice pokzO     
  • I saw a plant growing out of a crevice in the wall.我看到墙缝里长出一棵草来。
  • He edged the tool into the crevice.他把刀具插进裂缝里。
36 opaque jvhy1     
  • The windows are of opaque glass.这些窗户装着不透明玻璃。
  • Their intentions remained opaque.他们的意图仍然令人费解。
37 slate uEfzI     
  • The nominating committee laid its slate before the board.提名委员会把候选人名单提交全体委员会讨论。
  • What kind of job uses stained wood and slate? 什么工作会接触木头污浊和石板呢?
38 realization nTwxS     
  • We shall gladly lend every effort in our power toward its realization.我们将乐意为它的实现而竭尽全力。
  • He came to the realization that he would never make a good teacher.他逐渐认识到自己永远不会成为好老师。
39 spouted 985d1d5b93adfe0645aa2c5d409e09e2     
adj.装有嘴的v.(指液体)喷出( spout的过去式和过去分词 );滔滔不绝地讲;喋喋不休地说;喷水
  • The broken pipe spouted water all over the room. 破裂的水管喷了一屋子的水。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The lecturer spouted for hours. 讲师滔滔不绝地讲了几个小时。 来自《简明英汉词典》
40 incensed 0qizaV     
  • The decision incensed the workforce. 这个决定激怒了劳工大众。
  • They were incensed at the decision. 他们被这个决定激怒了。
41 sinister 6ETz6     
  • There is something sinister at the back of that series of crimes.在这一系列罪行背后有险恶的阴谋。
  • Their proposals are all worthless and designed out of sinister motives.他们的建议不仅一钱不值,而且包藏祸心。
42 rigidity HDgyg     
  • The rigidity of the metal caused it to crack.这金属因刚度强而产生裂纹。
  • He deplored the rigidity of her views.他痛感她的观点僵化。
43 portico MBHyf     
  • A large portico provides a suitably impressive entrance to the chapel.小教堂入口处宽敞的柱廊相当壮观。
  • The gateway and its portico had openings all around.门洞两旁与廊子的周围都有窗棂。
44 contrived ivBzmO     
  • There was nothing contrived or calculated about what he said.他说的话里没有任何蓄意捏造的成分。
  • The plot seems contrived.情节看起来不真实。
45 indifference k8DxO     
  • I was disappointed by his indifference more than somewhat.他的漠不关心使我很失望。
  • He feigned indifference to criticism of his work.他假装毫不在意别人批评他的作品。
46 deserted GukzoL     
  • The deserted village was filled with a deathly silence.这个荒废的村庄死一般的寂静。
  • The enemy chieftain was opposed and deserted by his followers.敌人头目众叛亲离。
47 perverse 53mzI     
  • It would be perverse to stop this healthy trend.阻止这种健康发展的趋势是没有道理的。
  • She gets a perverse satisfaction from making other people embarrassed.她有一种不正常的心态,以使别人难堪来取乐。
48 astounding QyKzns     
  • There was an astounding 20% increase in sales. 销售量惊人地增加了20%。
  • The Chairman's remarks were so astounding that the audience listened to him with bated breath. 主席说的话令人吃惊,所以听众都屏息听他说。 来自《简明英汉词典》
49 attentively AyQzjz     
  • She listened attentively while I poured out my problems. 我倾吐心中的烦恼时,她一直在注意听。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • She listened attentively and set down every word he said. 她专心听着,把他说的话一字不漏地记下来。 来自《简明英汉词典》
50 feverish gzsye     
  • He is too feverish to rest.他兴奋得安静不下来。
  • They worked with feverish haste to finish the job.为了完成此事他们以狂热的速度工作着。
51 imprisoned bc7d0bcdd0951055b819cfd008ef0d8d     
下狱,监禁( imprison的过去式和过去分词 )
  • He was imprisoned for two concurrent terms of 30 months and 18 months. 他被判处30个月和18个月的监禁,合并执行。
  • They were imprisoned for possession of drugs. 他们因拥有毒品而被监禁。
52 pretext 1Qsxi     
  • He used his headache as a pretext for not going to school.他借口头疼而不去上学。
  • He didn't attend that meeting under the pretext of sickness.他以生病为借口,没参加那个会议。
53 dubious Akqz1     
  • What he said yesterday was dubious.他昨天说的话很含糊。
  • He uses some dubious shifts to get money.他用一些可疑的手段去赚钱。
54 inquisitive s64xi     
  • Children are usually inquisitive.小孩通常很好问。
  • A pat answer is not going to satisfy an inquisitive audience.陈腔烂调的答案不能满足好奇的听众。
55 thoroughly sgmz0J     
  • The soil must be thoroughly turned over before planting.一定要先把土地深翻一遍再下种。
  • The soldiers have been thoroughly instructed in the care of their weapons.士兵们都系统地接受过保护武器的训练。
56 ponderous pOCxR     
  • His steps were heavy and ponderous.他的步伐沉重缓慢。
  • It was easy to underestimate him because of his occasionally ponderous manner.由于他偶尔现出的沉闷的姿态,很容易使人小看了他。
57 pall hvwyP     
  • Already the allure of meals in restaurants had begun to pall.饭店里的饭菜已经不像以前那样诱人。
  • I find his books begin to pall on me after a while.我发觉他的书读过一阵子就开始对我失去吸引力。
58 apparently tMmyQ     
  • An apparently blind alley leads suddenly into an open space.山穷水尽,豁然开朗。
  • He was apparently much surprised at the news.他对那个消息显然感到十分惊异。
59 gathering ChmxZ     
  • He called on Mr. White to speak at the gathering.他请怀特先生在集会上讲话。
  • He is on the wing gathering material for his novels.他正忙于为他的小说收集资料。
60 shudder JEqy8     
  • The sight of the coffin sent a shudder through him.看到那副棺材,他浑身一阵战栗。
  • We all shudder at the thought of the dreadful dirty place.我们一想到那可怕的肮脏地方就浑身战惊。
61 gaping gaping     
adj.口的;张口的;敞口的;多洞穴的v.目瞪口呆地凝视( gape的现在分词 );张开,张大
  • Ahead of them was a gaping abyss. 他们前面是一个巨大的深渊。
  • The antelope could not escape the crocodile's gaping jaws. 那只羚羊无法从鱷鱼张开的大口中逃脱。 来自《简明英汉词典》
62 spoke XryyC     
n.(车轮的)辐条;轮辐;破坏某人的计划;阻挠某人的行动 v.讲,谈(speak的过去式);说;演说;从某种观点来说
  • They sourced the spoke nuts from our company.他们的轮辐螺帽是从我们公司获得的。
  • The spokes of a wheel are the bars that connect the outer ring to the centre.辐条是轮子上连接外圈与中心的条棒。
63 icebergs 71cdbb120fe8de8e449c16eaeca8d8a8     
n.冰山,流冰( iceberg的名词复数 )
  • The drift of the icebergs in the sea endangers the ships. 海上冰山的漂流危及船只的安全。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The icebergs towered above them. 冰山高耸于他们上方。 来自辞典例句
64 apprehension bNayw     
  • There were still areas of doubt and her apprehension grew.有些地方仍然存疑,于是她越来越担心。
  • She is a girl of weak apprehension.她是一个理解力很差的女孩。
65 silhouetted 4f4f3ccd0698303d7829ad553dcf9eef     
  • We could see a church silhouetted against the skyline. 我们可以看到一座教堂凸现在天际。
  • The stark jagged rocks were silhouetted against the sky. 光秃嶙峋的岩石衬托着天空的背景矗立在那里。
66 syllable QHezJ     
  • You put too much emphasis on the last syllable.你把最后一个音节读得太重。
  • The stress on the last syllable is light.最后一个音节是轻音节。
67 hilarious xdhz3     
  • The party got quite hilarious after they brought more wine.在他们又拿来更多的酒之后,派对变得更加热闹起来。
  • We stop laughing because the show was so hilarious.我们笑个不停,因为那个节目太搞笑了。
68 hostility hdyzQ     
  • There is open hostility between the two leaders.两位领导人表现出公开的敌意。
  • His hostility to your plan is well known.他对你的计划所持的敌意是众所周知的。
69 heresy HdDza     
  • We should denounce a heresy.我们应该公开指责异端邪说。
  • It might be considered heresy to suggest such a notion.提出这样一个观点可能会被视为异端邪说。
70 arbiter bN8yi     
  • Andrew was the arbiter of the disagreement.安德鲁是那场纠纷的仲裁人。
  • Experiment is the final arbiter in science.实验是科学的最后仲裁者。
71 hoarse 5dqzA     
  • He asked me a question in a hoarse voice.他用嘶哑的声音问了我一个问题。
  • He was too excited and roared himself hoarse.他过于激动,嗓子都喊哑了。
72 immediate aapxh     
  • His immediate neighbours felt it their duty to call.他的近邻认为他们有责任去拜访。
  • We declared ourselves for the immediate convocation of the meeting.我们主张立即召开这个会议。
73 trifling SJwzX     
  • They quarreled over a trifling matter.他们为这种微不足道的事情争吵。
  • So far Europe has no doubt, gained a real conveniency,though surely a very trifling one.直到现在为止,欧洲无疑地已经获得了实在的便利,不过那确是一种微不足道的便利。
74 irritably e3uxw     
  • He lost his temper and snapped irritably at the children. 他发火了,暴躁地斥责孩子们。
  • On this account the silence was irritably broken by a reproof. 为了这件事,他妻子大声斥责,令人恼火地打破了宁静。 来自英汉文学 - 嘉莉妹妹
75 corpse JYiz4     
  • What she saw was just an unfeeling corpse.她见到的只是一具全无感觉的尸体。
  • The corpse was preserved from decay by embalming.尸体用香料涂抹以防腐烂。
76 heartily Ld3xp     
  • He ate heartily and went out to look for his horse.他痛快地吃了一顿,就出去找他的马。
  • The host seized my hand and shook it heartily.主人抓住我的手,热情地和我握手。
77 fumbled 78441379bedbe3ea49c53fb90c34475f     
(笨拙地)摸索或处理(某事物)( fumble的过去式和过去分词 ); 乱摸,笨拙地弄; 使落下
  • She fumbled in her pocket for a handkerchief. 她在她口袋里胡乱摸找手帕。
  • He fumbled about in his pockets for the ticket. 他(瞎)摸着衣兜找票。
78 dungeon MZyz6     
  • They were driven into a dark dungeon.他们被人驱赶进入一个黑暗的地牢。
  • He was just set free from a dungeon a few days ago.几天前,他刚从土牢里被放出来。
79 plunging 5fe12477bea00d74cd494313d62da074     
adj.跳进的,突进的v.颠簸( plunge的现在分词 );暴跌;骤降;突降
  • War broke out again, plunging the people into misery and suffering. 战祸复发,生灵涂炭。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
  • He is plunging into an abyss of despair. 他陷入了绝望的深渊。 来自《简明英汉词典》
80 lumbering FA7xm     
  • Lumbering and, later, paper-making were carried out in smaller cities. 木材业和后来的造纸都由较小的城市经营。
  • Lumbering is very important in some underdeveloped countries. 在一些不发达的国家,伐木业十分重要。
81 curb LmRyy     
  • I could not curb my anger.我按捺不住我的愤怒。
  • You must curb your daughter when you are in church.你在教堂时必须管住你的女儿。
82 Oxford Wmmz0a     
  • At present he has become a Professor of Chemistry at Oxford.他现在已是牛津大学的化学教授了。
  • This is where the road to Oxford joins the road to London.这是去牛津的路与去伦敦的路的汇合处。
83 ethics Dt3zbI     
  • The ethics of his profession don't permit him to do that.他的职业道德不允许他那样做。
  • Personal ethics and professional ethics sometimes conflict.个人道德和职业道德有时会相互抵触。
84 secondly cjazXx     
  • Secondly,use your own head and present your point of view.第二,动脑筋提出自己的见解。
  • Secondly it is necessary to define the applied load.其次,需要确定所作用的载荷。
85 bind Vt8zi     
  • I will let the waiter bind up the parcel for you.我让服务生帮你把包裹包起来。
  • He wants a shirt that does not bind him.他要一件不使他觉得过紧的衬衫。
86 standing 2hCzgo     
  • After the earthquake only a few houses were left standing.地震过后只有几幢房屋还立着。
  • They're standing out against any change in the law.他们坚决反对对法律做任何修改。
87 slippers oiPzHV     
n. 拖鞋
  • a pair of slippers 一双拖鞋
  • He kicked his slippers off and dropped on to the bed. 他踢掉了拖鞋,倒在床上。
88 crooked xvazAv     
  • He crooked a finger to tell us to go over to him.他弯了弯手指,示意我们到他那儿去。
  • You have to drive slowly on these crooked country roads.在这些弯弯曲曲的乡间小路上你得慢慢开车。
89 snobbish UhCyE     
  • She's much too snobbish to stay at that plain hotel.她很势利,不愿住在那个普通旅馆。
  • I'd expected her to be snobbish but she was warm and friendly.我原以为她会非常势利,但她却非常热情和友好。
90 exterior LlYyr     
  • The seed has a hard exterior covering.这种子外壳很硬。
  • We are painting the exterior wall of the house.我们正在给房子的外墙涂漆。
91 savage ECxzR     
  • The poor man received a savage beating from the thugs.那可怜的人遭到暴徒的痛打。
  • He has a savage temper.他脾气粗暴。
92 sitting-room sitting-room     
  • The sitting-room is clean.起居室很清洁。
  • Each villa has a separate sitting-room.每栋别墅都有一间独立的起居室。
93 eminent dpRxn     
  • We are expecting the arrival of an eminent scientist.我们正期待一位著名科学家的来访。
  • He is an eminent citizen of China.他是一个杰出的中国公民。
94 minor e7fzR     
  • The young actor was given a minor part in the new play.年轻的男演员在这出新戏里被分派担任一个小角色。
  • I gave him a minor share of my wealth.我把小部分财产给了他。
95 uncommonly 9ca651a5ba9c3bff93403147b14d37e2     
adv. 稀罕(极,非常)
  • an uncommonly gifted child 一个天赋异禀的儿童
  • My little Mary was feeling uncommonly empty. 我肚子当时正饿得厉害。
96 philosophical rN5xh     
  • The teacher couldn't answer the philosophical problem.老师不能解答这个哲学问题。
  • She is very philosophical about her bad luck.她对自己的不幸看得很开。
97 burrows 6f0e89270b16e255aa86501b6ccbc5f3     
n.地洞( burrow的名词复数 )v.挖掘(洞穴),挖洞( burrow的第三人称单数 );翻寻
  • The intertidal beach unit contains some organism burrows. 潮间海滩单元含有一些生物潜穴。 来自辞典例句
  • A mole burrows its way through the ground. 鼹鼠会在地下钻洞前进。 来自辞典例句
98 perfectly 8Mzxb     
  • The witnesses were each perfectly certain of what they said.证人们个个对自己所说的话十分肯定。
  • Everything that we're doing is all perfectly above board.我们做的每件事情都是光明正大的。
99 rudiments GjBzbg     
  • He has just learned the rudiments of Chinese. 他学汉语刚刚入门。
  • You do not seem to know the first rudiments of agriculture. 你似乎连农业上的一点最起码的常识也没有。
100 controversy 6Z9y0     
  • That is a fact beyond controversy.那是一个无可争论的事实。
  • We ran the risk of becoming the butt of every controversy.我们要冒使自己在所有的纷争中都成为众矢之的的风险。
101 legitimate L9ZzJ     
  • Sickness is a legitimate reason for asking for leave.生病是请假的一个正当的理由。
  • That's a perfectly legitimate fear.怀有这种恐惧完全在情理之中。
102 bent QQ8yD     
  • He was fully bent upon the project.他一心扑在这项计划上。
  • We bent over backward to help them.我们尽了最大努力帮助他们。
103 backwards BP9ya     
  • He turned on the light and began to pace backwards and forwards.他打开电灯并开始走来走去。
  • All the girls fell over backwards to get the party ready.姑娘们迫不及待地为聚会做准备。
104 utterly ZfpzM1     
  • Utterly devoted to the people,he gave his life in saving his patients.他忠于人民,把毕生精力用于挽救患者的生命。
  • I was utterly ravished by the way she smiled.她的微笑使我完全陶醉了。
105 twitched bb3f705fc01629dc121d198d54fa0904     
vt.& vi.(使)抽动,(使)颤动(twitch的过去式与过去分词形式)
  • Her lips twitched with amusement. 她忍俊不禁地颤动着嘴唇。
  • The child's mouth twitched as if she were about to cry. 这小孩的嘴抽动着,像是要哭。 来自《简明英汉词典》
106 unintelligible sfuz2V     
  • If a computer is given unintelligible data, it returns unintelligible results.如果计算机得到的是难以理解的数据,它给出的也将是难以理解的结果。
  • The terms were unintelligible to ordinary folk.这些术语一般人是不懂的。
107 commodious aXCyr     
  • It was a commodious and a diverting life.这是一种自由自在,令人赏心悦目的生活。
  • Their habitation was not merely respectable and commodious,but even dignified and imposing.他们的居所既宽敞舒适又尊严气派。
108 toiling 9e6f5a89c05478ce0b1205d063d361e5     
长时间或辛苦地工作( toil的现在分词 ); 艰难缓慢地移动,跋涉
  • The fiery orator contrasted the idle rich with the toiling working classes. 这位激昂的演说家把无所事事的富人同终日辛劳的工人阶级进行了对比。
  • She felt like a beetle toiling in the dust. She was filled with repulsion. 她觉得自己像只甲虫在地里挣扎,心中涌满愤恨。
109 mighty YDWxl     
  • A mighty force was about to break loose.一股巨大的力量即将迸发而出。
  • The mighty iceberg came into view.巨大的冰山出现在眼前。
110 plunged 06a599a54b33c9d941718dccc7739582     
v.颠簸( plunge的过去式和过去分词 );暴跌;骤降;突降
  • The train derailed and plunged into the river. 火车脱轨栽进了河里。
  • She lost her balance and plunged 100 feet to her death. 她没有站稳,从100英尺的高处跌下摔死了。
111 slung slung     
抛( sling的过去式和过去分词 ); 吊挂; 遣送; 押往
  • He slung the bag over his shoulder. 他把包一甩,挎在肩上。
  • He stood up and slung his gun over his shoulder. 他站起来把枪往肩上一背。
112 simultaneously 4iBz1o     
  • The radar beam can track a number of targets almost simultaneously.雷达波几乎可以同时追着多个目标。
  • The Windows allow a computer user to execute multiple programs simultaneously.Windows允许计算机用户同时运行多个程序。
113 butted 6cd04b7d59e3b580de55d8a5bd6b73bb     
  • Two goats butted each other. 两只山羊用角顶架。
  • He butted against a tree in the dark. 他黑暗中撞上了一棵树。
114 peals 9acce61cb0d806ac4745738cf225f13b     
n.(声音大而持续或重复的)洪亮的响声( peal的名词复数 );隆隆声;洪亮的钟声;钟乐v.(使)(钟等)鸣响,(雷等)发出隆隆声( peal的第三人称单数 )
  • She burst into peals of laughter. 她忽然哈哈大笑起来。
  • She went into fits/peals of laughter. 她发出阵阵笑声。 来自辞典例句
115 stunned 735ec6d53723be15b1737edd89183ec2     
adj. 震惊的,惊讶的 动词stun的过去式和过去分词
  • The fall stunned me for a moment. 那一下摔得我昏迷了片刻。
  • The leaders of the Kopper Company were then stunned speechless. 科伯公司的领导们当时被惊得目瞪口呆。
116 wreck QMjzE     
  • Weather may have been a factor in the wreck.天气可能是造成这次失事的原因之一。
  • No one can wreck the friendship between us.没有人能够破坏我们之间的友谊。
117 astonishment VvjzR     
  • They heard him give a loud shout of astonishment.他们听见他惊奇地大叫一声。
  • I was filled with astonishment at her strange action.我对她的奇怪举动不胜惊异。
118 apoplectic seNya     
  • He died from a stroke of apoplexy.他死于中风。
  • My father was apoplectic when he discovered the truth.我父亲在发现真相后勃然大怒。
119 prostrate 7iSyH     
  • She was prostrate on the floor.她俯卧在地板上。
  • The Yankees had the South prostrate and they intended to keep It'so.北方佬已经使南方屈服了,他们还打算继续下去。
120 trampled 8c4f546db10d3d9e64a5bba8494912e6     
踩( trample的过去式和过去分词 ); 践踏; 无视; 侵犯
  • He gripped his brother's arm lest he be trampled by the mob. 他紧抓着他兄弟的胳膊,怕他让暴民踩着。
  • People were trampled underfoot in the rush for the exit. 有人在拼命涌向出口时被踩在脚下。
121 thither cgRz1o     
  • He wandered hither and thither looking for a playmate.他逛来逛去找玩伴。
  • He tramped hither and thither.他到处流浪。
122 battering 98a585e7458f82d8b56c9e9dfbde727d     
n.用坏,损坏v.连续猛击( batter的现在分词 )
  • The film took a battering from critics in the US. 该影片在美国遭遇到批评家的猛烈抨击。
  • He kept battering away at the door. 他接连不断地砸门。 来自《简明英汉词典》
123 anvil HVxzH     
  • The blacksmith shaped a horseshoe on his anvil.铁匠在他的铁砧上打出一个马蹄形。
  • The anvil onto which the staples are pressed was not assemble correctly.订书机上的铁砧安装错位。
124 pinioned dd9a58e290bf8ac0174c770f05cc9e90     
v.抓住[捆住](双臂)( pinion的过去式和过去分词 )
  • His arms were pinioned to his sides. 他的双臂被绑在身体两侧。
  • Pinioned by the press of men around them, they were unable to move. 周围的人群挤压着他们,使他们动弹不得。 来自辞典例句
125 steadily Qukw6     
  • The scope of man's use of natural resources will steadily grow.人类利用自然资源的广度将日益扩大。
  • Our educational reform was steadily led onto the correct path.我们的教学改革慢慢上轨道了。
126 illustrated 2a891807ad5907f0499171bb879a36aa     
adj. 有插图的,列举的 动词illustrate的过去式和过去分词
  • His lecture was illustrated with slides taken during the expedition. 他在讲演中使用了探险时拍摄到的幻灯片。
  • The manufacturing Methods: Will be illustrated in the next chapter. 制作方法将在下一章说明。
127 conversationally c99513d77f180e80661b63a35b670a58     
  • I am at an unfavourable position in being conversationally unacquainted with English. 我由于不熟悉英语会话而处于不利地位。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
  • The findings suggest that happy lives are social and conversationally deep, rather than solitary and superficial. 结论显示,快乐的生活具有社会层面的意义并与日常交谈有关,而并不仅仅是个体差异和表面现象。 来自互联网
128 sociably Lwhwu     
  • Hall very sociably pulled up. 霍尔和气地勒住僵绳。
  • Sociably, the new neighbors invited everyone on the block for coffee. 那个喜好交际的新邻居邀请街区的每个人去喝咖啡。
129 posture q1gzk     
  • The government adopted an uncompromising posture on the issue of independence.政府在独立这一问题上采取了毫不妥协的态度。
  • He tore off his coat and assumed a fighting posture.他脱掉上衣,摆出一副打架的架势。
130 fracas 260yo     
  • A couple of mobsters were rubbed out in a fracas with the law.几个暴徒在与警方喧闹的斗争中丧命。
  • The police were called in to stop the fracas.警察奉命去制止骚乱。
131 sketch UEyyG     
  • My sister often goes into the country to sketch. 我姐姐常到乡间去写生。
  • I will send you a slight sketch of the house.我将给你寄去房屋的草图。
132 descended guQzoy     
  • A mood of melancholy descended on us. 一种悲伤的情绪袭上我们的心头。
  • The path descended the hill in a series of zigzags. 小路呈连续的之字形顺着山坡蜿蜒而下。
133 proceedings Wk2zvX     
  • He was released on bail pending committal proceedings. 他交保获释正在候审。
  • to initiate legal proceedings against sb 对某人提起诉讼
134 resentment 4sgyv     
  • All her feelings of resentment just came pouring out.她一股脑儿倾吐出所有的怨恨。
  • She cherished a deep resentment under the rose towards her employer.她暗中对她的雇主怀恨在心。
135 drearily a9ac978ac6fcd40e1eeeffcdb1b717a2     
  • "Oh, God," thought Scarlett drearily, "that's just the trouble. "啊,上帝!" 思嘉沮丧地想,"难就难在这里呀。
  • His voice was utterly and drearily expressionless. 他的声调,阴沉沉的,干巴巴的,完全没有感情。
136 subterranean ssWwo     
  • London has 9 miles of such subterranean passages.伦敦像这样的地下通道有9英里长。
  • We wandered through subterranean passages.我们漫游地下通道。
137 eyebrows a0e6fb1330e9cfecfd1c7a4d00030ed5     
眉毛( eyebrow的名词复数 )
  • Eyebrows stop sweat from coming down into the eyes. 眉毛挡住汗水使其不能流进眼睛。
  • His eyebrows project noticeably. 他的眉毛特别突出。
138 piquant N2fza     
  • Bland vegetables are often served with a piquant sauce.清淡的蔬菜常以辛辣的沙司调味。
  • He heard of a piquant bit of news.他听到了一则令人兴奋的消息。
139 gust q5Zyu     
  • A gust of wind blew the front door shut.一阵大风吹来,把前门关上了。
  • A gust of happiness swept through her.一股幸福的暖流流遍她的全身。
140 condescension JYMzw     
  • His politeness smacks of condescension. 他的客气带有屈尊俯就的意味。
  • Despite its condescension toward the Bennet family, the letter begins to allay Elizabeth's prejudice against Darcy. 尽管这封信对班纳特家的态度很高傲,但它开始消除伊丽莎白对达西的偏见。
141 crest raqyA     
  • The rooster bristled his crest.公鸡竖起了鸡冠。
  • He reached the crest of the hill before dawn.他于黎明前到达山顶。
142 chuckling e8dcb29f754603afc12d2f97771139ab     
轻声地笑( chuckle的现在分词 )
  • I could hear him chuckling to himself as he read his book. 他看书时,我能听见他的轻声发笑。
  • He couldn't help chuckling aloud. 他忍不住的笑了出来。 来自汉英文学 - 骆驼祥子
143 tranquilly d9b4cfee69489dde2ee29b9be8b5fb9c     
adv. 宁静地
  • He took up his brush and went tranquilly to work. 他拿起刷子,一声不响地干了起来。
  • The evening was closing down tranquilly. 暮色正在静悄悄地笼罩下来。
144 exasperation HiyzX     
  • He snorted with exasperation.他愤怒地哼了一声。
  • She rolled her eyes in sheer exasperation.她气急败坏地转动着眼珠。
145 vaguely BfuzOy     
  • He had talked vaguely of going to work abroad.他含糊其词地说了到国外工作的事。
  • He looked vaguely before him with unseeing eyes.他迷迷糊糊的望着前面,对一切都视而不见。
146 toils b316b6135d914eee9a4423309c5057e6     
  • It did not declare him to be still in Mrs. Dorset's toils. 这并不表明他仍陷于多赛特夫人的情网。
  • The thief was caught in the toils of law. 这个贼陷入了法网。
147 untie SjJw4     
  • It's just impossible to untie the knot.It's too tight.这个结根本解不开。太紧了。
  • Will you please untie the knot for me?请你替我解开这个结头,好吗?
148 gasping gasping     
adj. 气喘的, 痉挛的 动词gasp的现在分词
  • He was gasping for breath. 他在喘气。
  • "Did you need a drink?""Yes, I'm gasping!” “你要喝点什么吗?”“我巴不得能喝点!”
149 undo Ok5wj     
  • His pride will undo him some day.他的傲慢总有一天会毁了他。
  • I managed secretly to undo a corner of the parcel.我悄悄地设法解开了包裹的一角。
150 desperately cu7znp     
  • He was desperately seeking a way to see her again.他正拼命想办法再见她一面。
  • He longed desperately to be back at home.他非常渴望回家。
151 discomfort cuvxN     
  • One has to bear a little discomfort while travelling.旅行中总要忍受一点不便。
  • She turned red with discomfort when the teacher spoke.老师讲话时她不好意思地红着脸。
152 corpses 2e7a6f2b001045a825912208632941b2     
n.死尸,尸体( corpse的名词复数 )
  • The living soldiers put corpses together and burned them. 活着的战士把尸体放在一起烧了。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Overhead, grayish-white clouds covered the sky, piling up heavily like decaying corpses. 天上罩满了灰白的薄云,同腐烂的尸体似的沉沉的盖在那里。 来自汉英文学 - 中国现代小说
153 destined Dunznz     
  • It was destined that they would marry.他们结婚是缘分。
  • The shipment is destined for America.这批货物将运往美国。
154 narrated 41d1c5fe7dace3e43c38e40bfeb85fe5     
v.故事( narrate的过去式和过去分词 )
  • Some of the story was narrated in the film. 该电影叙述了这个故事的部分情节。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • Defoe skilfully narrated the adventures of Robinson Crusoe on his desert island. 笛福生动地叙述了鲁滨逊·克鲁索在荒岛上的冒险故事。 来自《现代汉英综合大词典》
155 luminous 98ez5     
  • There are luminous knobs on all the doors in my house.我家所有门上都安有夜光把手。
  • Most clocks and watches in this shop are in luminous paint.这家商店出售的大多数钟表都涂了发光漆。
156 sprout ITizY     
  • When do deer first sprout horns?鹿在多大的时候开始长出角?
  • It takes about a week for the seeds to sprout.这些种子大约要一周后才会发芽。
157 prodigy n14zP     
  • She was a child prodigy on the violin.她是神童小提琴手。
  • He was always a Negro prodigy who played barbarously and wonderfully.他始终是一个黑人的奇才,这种奇才弹奏起来粗野而惊人。
158 weird bghw8     
  • From his weird behaviour,he seems a bit of an oddity.从他不寻常的行为看来,他好像有点怪。
  • His weird clothes really gas me.他的怪衣裳简直笑死人。
159 reverence BByzT     
  • He was a bishop who was held in reverence by all.他是一位被大家都尊敬的主教。
  • We reverence tradition but will not be fettered by it.我们尊重传统,但不被传统所束缚。
160 subservience 2bcc2b181232bc66a11e8370e5dd82c9     
  • I could not make subservience an automatic part of my behavior. 我不能把阿谀奉承化为我自动奉行的处世之道。 来自辞典例句
  • All his actions were in subservience to the general plan. 他的所有行为对整体计划有帮助。 来自互联网
161 tyrants b6c058541e716c67268f3d018da01b5e     
专制统治者( tyrant的名词复数 ); 暴君似的人; (古希腊的)僭主; 严酷的事物
  • The country was ruled by a succession of tyrants. 这个国家接连遭受暴君的统治。
  • The people suffered under foreign tyrants. 人民在异族暴君的统治下受苦受难。
162 lighting CpszPL     
  • The gas lamp gradually lost ground to electric lighting.煤气灯逐渐为电灯所代替。
  • The lighting in that restaurant is soft and romantic.那个餐馆照明柔和而且浪漫。
163 obeisance fH5xT     
  • He made obeisance to the king.他向国王表示臣服。
  • While he was still young and strong all paid obeisance to him.他年轻力壮时所有人都对他毕恭毕敬。
164 kindly tpUzhQ     
  • Her neighbours spoke of her as kindly and hospitable.她的邻居都说她和蔼可亲、热情好客。
  • A shadow passed over the kindly face of the old woman.一道阴影掠过老太太慈祥的面孔。
165 attest HO3yC     
  • I can attest to the absolute truth of his statement. 我可以证实他的话是千真万确的。
  • These ruins sufficiently attest the former grandeur of the place. 这些遗迹充分证明此处昔日的宏伟。
166 loyalty gA9xu     
  • She told him the truth from a sense of loyalty.她告诉他真相是出于忠诚。
  • His loyalty to his friends was never in doubt.他对朋友的一片忠心从来没受到怀疑。
167 generosity Jf8zS     
  • We should match their generosity with our own.我们应该像他们一样慷慨大方。
  • We adore them for their generosity.我们钦佩他们的慷慨。
168 joviality 00d80ae95f8022e5efb8faabf3370402     
  • However, there is an air of joviality in the sugar camps. 然而炼糖营房里却充满着热气腾腾的欢乐气氛。 来自辞典例句
  • Immediately he noticed the joviality of Stane's manner. 他随即注意到史丹兴高采烈的神情。 来自辞典例句
169 satchel dYVxO     
  • The school boy opened the door and flung his satchel in.那个男学生打开门,把他的书包甩了进去。
  • She opened her satchel and took out her father's gloves.打开书箱,取出了她父亲的手套来。
170 implored 0b089ebf3591e554caa381773b194ff1     
恳求或乞求(某人)( implore的过去式和过去分词 )
  • She implored him to stay. 她恳求他留下。
  • She implored him with tears in her eyes to forgive her. 她含泪哀求他原谅她。
171 entity vo8xl     
  • The country is no longer one political entity.这个国家不再是一个统一的政治实体了。
  • As a separate legal entity,the corporation must pay taxes.作为一个独立的法律实体,公司必须纳税。
172 lair R2jx2     
  • How can you catch tiger cubs without entering the tiger's lair?不入虎穴,焉得虎子?
  • I retired to my lair,and wrote some letters.我回到自己的躲藏处,写了几封信。
173 bribing 2a05f9cab5c720b18ca579795979a581     
  • He tried to escape by bribing the guard. 他企图贿赂警卫而逃走。
  • Always a new way of bribing unknown and maybe nonexistent forces. 总是用诸如此类的新方法来讨好那不知名的、甚或根本不存在的魔力。 来自英汉非文学 - 科幻
174 rambling MTfxg     
  • We spent the summer rambling in Ireland. 我们花了一个夏天漫游爱尔兰。
  • It was easy to get lost in the rambling house. 在布局凌乱的大房子里容易迷路。
175 sumptuous Rqqyl     
  • The guests turned up dressed in sumptuous evening gowns.客人们身着华丽的夜礼服出现了。
  • We were ushered into a sumptuous dining hall.我们被领进一个豪华的餐厅。
176 hospitable CcHxA     
  • The man is very hospitable.He keeps open house for his friends and fellow-workers.那人十分好客,无论是他的朋友还是同事,他都盛情接待。
  • The locals are hospitable and welcoming.当地人热情好客。
177 arboreal jNoyf     
  • Man was evolved from an ancestor that was probably arboreal.人大概是从住在树上的祖先进化而来的。
  • Koala is an arboreal Australian marsupial.考拉是一种澳大利亚树栖有袋动物。
178 Founder wigxF     
  • He was extolled as the founder of their Florentine school.他被称颂为佛罗伦萨画派的鼻祖。
  • According to the old tradition,Romulus was the founder of Rome.按照古老的传说,罗穆卢斯是古罗马的建国者。
179 vacancy EHpy7     
  • Her going on maternity leave will create a temporary vacancy.她休产假时将会有一个临时空缺。
  • The vacancy of her expression made me doubt if she was listening.她茫然的神情让我怀疑她是否在听。
180 gaped 11328bb13d82388ec2c0b2bf7af6f272     
v.目瞪口呆地凝视( gape的过去式和过去分词 );张开,张大
  • A huge chasm gaped before them. 他们面前有个巨大的裂痕。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The front door was missing. A hole gaped in the roof. 前门不翼而飞,屋顶豁开了一个洞。 来自辞典例句
181 ecstasy 9kJzY     
  • He listened to the music with ecstasy.他听音乐听得入了神。
  • Speechless with ecstasy,the little boys gazed at the toys.小孩注视着那些玩具,高兴得说不出话来。
182 brotherhood 1xfz3o     
  • They broke up the brotherhood.他们断绝了兄弟关系。
  • They live and work together in complete equality and brotherhood.他们完全平等和兄弟般地在一起生活和工作。
183 prone 50bzu     
  • Some people are prone to jump to hasty conclusions.有些人往往作出轻率的结论。
  • He is prone to lose his temper when people disagree with him.人家一不同意他的意见,他就发脾气。
184 sardines sardines     
n. 沙丁鱼
  • The young of some kinds of herring are canned as sardines. 有些种类的鲱鱼幼鱼可制成罐头。
  • Sardines can be eaten fresh but are often preserved in tins. 沙丁鱼可以吃新鲜的,但常常是装听的。
185 larks 05e5fd42fbbb0fa8ae0d9a20b6f3efe1     
n.百灵科鸟(尤指云雀)( lark的名词复数 );一大早就起床;鸡鸣即起;(因太费力而不想干时说)算了v.百灵科鸟(尤指云雀)( lark的第三人称单数 );一大早就起床;鸡鸣即起;(因太费力而不想干时说)算了
  • Maybe if she heard the larks sing she'd write. 玛丽听到云雀的歌声也许会写信的。 来自名作英译部分
  • But sure there are no larks in big cities. 可大城市里哪有云雀呢。” 来自名作英译部分
186 ostriches 527632ac780f6daef4ae4634bb94d739     
n.鸵鸟( ostrich的名词复数 );逃避现实的人,不愿正视现实者
  • They are the silliest lot of old ostriches I ever heard of. 他们真是我闻所未闻的一群最傻的老鸵鸟。 来自辞典例句
  • How ostriches could bear to run so hard in this heat I never succeed in understanding. 驼鸟在这样干燥炎热的地带为什么能疾速长跑,我永远也理解不了。 来自辞典例句
187 capering d4ea412ac03a170b293139861cb3c627     
v.跳跃,雀跃( caper的现在分词 );蹦蹦跳跳
  • The lambs were capering in the fields. 羊羔在地里欢快地跳跃。 来自《简明英汉词典》
  • The boy was Capering dersively, with obscene unambiguous gestures, before a party of English tourists. 这个顽童在一群英国旅游客人面前用明显下流的动作可笑地蹦蹦跳跳着。 来自辞典例句
188 touching sg6zQ9     
  • It was a touching sight.这是一幅动人的景象。
  • His letter was touching.他的信很感人。
189 scarlet zD8zv     
  • The scarlet leaves of the maples contrast well with the dark green of the pines.深红的枫叶和暗绿的松树形成了明显的对比。
  • The glowing clouds are growing slowly pale,scarlet,bright red,and then light red.天空的霞光渐渐地淡下去了,深红的颜色变成了绯红,绯红又变为浅红。
190 futile vfTz2     
  • They were killed,to the last man,in a futile attack.因为进攻失败,他们全部被杀,无一幸免。
  • Their efforts to revive him were futile.他们对他抢救无效。
191 taut iUazb     
  • The bowstring is stretched taut.弓弦绷得很紧。
  • Scarlett's taut nerves almost cracked as a sudden noise sounded in the underbrush near them. 思嘉紧张的神经几乎一下绷裂了,因为她听见附近灌木丛中突然冒出的一个声音。
192 passionate rLDxd     
  • He is said to be the most passionate man.据说他是最有激情的人。
  • He is very passionate about the project.他对那个项目非常热心。
193 stringency 7b0eb572662f65d6c5068bb3b56ce4b0     
  • Bankers say financial stringency constitutes a serious threat to the country. 银行家们说信用紧缩对国家构成了严重的威胁。 来自辞典例句
  • The gaze were filled with care, stringency, trust, and also hope! 有呵护,有严格,有信任,更有希望! 来自互联网
194 duel 2rmxa     
  • The two teams are locked in a duel for first place.两个队为争夺第一名打得难解难分。
  • Duroy was forced to challenge his disparager to duel.杜洛瓦不得不向诋毁他的人提出决斗。
195 frivolity 7fNzi     
  • It was just a piece of harmless frivolity. 这仅是无恶意的愚蠢行为。
  • Hedonism and frivolity will diffuse hell tnrough all our days. 享乐主义和轻薄浮佻会将地狱扩展到我们的整个日子之中。 来自辞典例句
196 intensity 45Ixd     
  • I didn't realize the intensity of people's feelings on this issue.我没有意识到这一问题能引起群情激奋。
  • The strike is growing in intensity.罢工日益加剧。
197 privately IkpzwT     
  • Some ministers admit privately that unemployment could continue to rise.一些部长私下承认失业率可能继续升高。
  • The man privately admits that his motive is profits.那人私下承认他的动机是为了牟利。
198 purely 8Sqxf     
  • I helped him purely and simply out of friendship.我帮他纯粹是出于友情。
  • This disproves the theory that children are purely imitative.这证明认为儿童只会单纯地模仿的理论是站不住脚的。
199 strictly GtNwe     
  • His doctor is dieting him strictly.他的医生严格规定他的饮食。
  • The guests were seated strictly in order of precedence.客人严格按照地位高低就座。
200 maiden yRpz7     
  • The prince fell in love with a fair young maiden.王子爱上了一位年轻美丽的少女。
  • The aircraft makes its maiden flight tomorrow.这架飞机明天首航。
201 condemned condemned     
adj. 被责难的, 被宣告有罪的 动词condemn的过去式和过去分词
  • He condemned the hypocrisy of those politicians who do one thing and say another. 他谴责了那些说一套做一套的政客的虚伪。
  • The policy has been condemned as a regressive step. 这项政策被认为是一种倒退而受到谴责。
202 solitary 7FUyx     
  • I am rather fond of a solitary stroll in the country.我颇喜欢在乡间独自徜徉。
  • The castle rises in solitary splendour on the fringe of the desert.这座城堡巍然耸立在沙漠的边际,显得十分壮美。
203 confinement qpOze     
  • He spent eleven years in solitary confinement.他度过了11年的单独监禁。
  • The date for my wife's confinement was approaching closer and closer.妻子分娩的日子越来越近了。
204 backbiting d0736e9eb21ad2d1bc00e3a309b2f35c     
  • You should refrain your tongue from backbiting. 你不要背后诽谤人。
  • Refrain your tongue from backbiting. 不要在背后中伤人家。
205 epic ui5zz     
  • I gave up my epic and wrote this little tale instead.我放弃了写叙事诗,而写了这个小故事。
  • They held a banquet of epic proportions.他们举行了盛大的宴会。


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