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perceive
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Sense and Sensibility
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perceive
Used In
Sense and Sensibility
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as in: though blind, can perceive light Define
to become aware of -- especially by using the senses (to see, hear, smell, feel, or taste)
  • They had not remained in this manner long, before Elinor perceived Willoughby, standing within a few yards of them,

  • There are no more uses of "perceive" identified with this meaning, but check unspecified meaning below.

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  • I could perceive the ship coming over the horizon.
  • It’s one thing to perceive something with the senses and another to understand its importance.

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as in: perceive the system as unfair Define
to view in a certain way so as to form a belief or opinion
  • ...you perceive, as well as myself, not only in this, but in many other circumstances, reason enough to be convinced that....

  • There are no more uses of "perceive" identified with this meaning, but check unspecified meaning below.

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  • She finally perceived the futility of her protest.
  • The company wants to make sure it’s low price is not perceived as implying low quality.

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unspecified meaning
  • I do not perceive how you could express yourself more warmly.
  • Elinor needed little observation to perceive that her reserve was a mere calmness of manner with which sense had nothing to do.

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  • The whole family perceived it, and Mrs. Dashwood, attributing it to some want of liberality in his mother, sat down to table indignant against all selfish parents.
  • But, whatever might really be its limits, it was enough, when perceived by his sister, to make her uneasy, and at the same time, (which was still more common,) to make her uncivil.
  • No sooner did she perceive any symptom of love in his behaviour to Elinor, than she considered their serious attachment as certain, and looked forward to their marriage as rapidly approaching.
  • The gentleman offered his services; and perceiving that her modesty declined what her situation rendered necessary, took her up in his arms without farther delay, and carried her down the hill.
  • Marianne began now to perceive that the desperation which had seized her at sixteen and a half, of ever seeing a man who could satisfy her ideas of perfection, had been rash and unjustifiable.
  • At first sight, his address is certainly not striking; and his person can hardly be called handsome, till the expression of his eyes, which are uncommonly good, and the general sweetness of his countenance, is perceived.
  • In one of these excursive glances she perceived among a group of young men, the very he, who had given them a lecture on toothpick-cases at Gray’s.
  • Her daughters are both exceedingly well married, and therefore I cannot perceive the necessity of her remembering them farther.

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  • At that moment she first perceived him, and her whole countenance glowing with sudden delight, she would have moved towards him instantly, had not her sister caught hold of her.
  • She would not be frightened from paying him those attentions which, as a friend and almost a relation, were his due, by the observant eyes of Lucy, though she soon perceived them to be narrowly watching her.
  • She does not know how to hold her tongue, as you must perceive, and I am sure I was in the greatest fright in the world t’other day, when Edward’s name was mentioned by Sir John, lest she should out with it all.
  • In this situation, Elinor, roused from sleep by her agitation and sobs, first perceived her; and after observing her for a few moments with silent anxiety, said, in a tone of the most considerate gentleness, "Marianne, may I ask-?"
  • She perceived him soon afterwards looking at herself, and speaking familiarly to her brother; and had just determined to find out his name from the latter, when they both came towards her, and Mr. Dashwood introduced him to her as Mr. Robert Ferrars.
  • Elinor perceived with alarm that she was not quite herself, and, while attempting to soothe her, eagerly felt her pulse.
  • In a moment she perceived that the others were likewise aware of the mistake.
  • For the rest of his character and habits, they were marked, as far as Elinor could perceive, with no traits at all unusual in his sex and time of life.
  • She was sitting near the window, and as soon as Sir John perceived her, he left the rest of the party to the ceremony of knocking at the door, and stepping across the turf, obliged her to open the casement to speak to him, though the space was so short between the door and the window, as to make it hardly possible to speak at one without being heard at the other.
  • Elinor was disappointed too; but at the same time her regard for Colonel Brandon ensured his welcome with her; and she felt particularly hurt that a man so partial to her sister should perceive that she experienced nothing but grief and disappointment in seeing him.
  • Here, however, Elinor perceived,—not the language, not the professions of Colonel Brandon, but the natural embellishments of her mother’s active fancy, which fashioned every thing delightful to her as it chose.
  • Elinor, who had now been for some time reflecting on the propriety or impropriety of speedily hazarding her narration, without feeling at all nearer decision than at first, heard this; and perceiving that as reflection did nothing, resolution must do all, soon found herself leading to the fact.
  • Mrs. Dashwood, whose eyes, as she answered the servant’s inquiry, had intuitively taken the same direction, was shocked to perceive by Elinor’s countenance how much she really suffered, and a moment afterwards, alike distressed by Marianne’s situation, knew not on which child to bestow her principal attention.
  • But her condemnation of him did not blind her to the impropriety of their having been written at all; and she was silently grieving over the imprudence which had hazarded such unsolicited proofs of tenderness, not warranted by anything preceding, and most severely condemned by the event, when Marianne, perceiving that she had finished the letters, observed to her that they contained nothing but what any one would have written in the same situation.
  • Impatient in this situation to be doing something that might lead to her sister’s relief, Elinor resolved to write the next morning to her mother, and hoped by awakening her fears for the health of Marianne, to procure those inquiries which had been so long delayed; and she was still more eagerly bent on this measure by perceiving after breakfast on the morrow, that Marianne was again writing to Willoughby, for she could not suppose it to be to any other person.
  • On being informed of the invitation, Mrs. Dashwood, persuaded that such an excursion would be productive of much amusement to both her daughters, and perceiving through all her affectionate attention to herself, how much the heart of Marianne was in it, would not hear of their declining the offer upon HER account; insisted on their both accepting it directly; and then began to foresee, with her usual cheerfulness, a variety of advantages that would accrue to them all, from this…
  • …whatever with the affair than what her heart gave him with every thing that passed, Elinor forgot the immediate distress of her sister, forgot that she had three letters on her lap yet unread, and so entirely forgot how long she had been in the room, that when on hearing a carriage drive up to the door, she went to the window to see who could be coming so unreasonably early, she was all astonishment to perceive Mrs. Jennings’s chariot, which she knew had not been ordered till one.
  • Elinor, with a very heavy heart, aware of the pain she was going to communicate, and perceiving, by Marianne’s letter, how ill she had succeeded in laying any foundation for it, then sat down to write her mother an account of what had passed, and entreat her directions for the future; while Marianne, who came into the drawing-room on Mrs. Jennings’s going away, remained fixed at the table where Elinor wrote, watching the advancement of her pen, grieving over her for the hardship of…
  • Mr. Palmer maintained the common, but unfatherly opinion among his sex, of all infants being alike; and though she could plainly perceive, at different times, the most striking resemblance between this baby and every one of his relations on both sides, there was no convincing his father of it; no persuading him to believe that it was not exactly like every other baby of the same age; nor could he even be brought to acknowledge the simple proposition of its being the finest child in the…
  • About noon, however, she began—but with a caution—a dread of disappointment which for some time kept her silent, even to her friend—to fancy, to hope she could perceive a slight amendment in her sister’s pulse;—she waited, watched, and examined it again and again;—and at last, with an agitation more difficult to bury under exterior calmness, than all her foregoing distress, ventured to communicate her hopes.
  • "I should always be happy," replied Elinor, "to show any mark of my esteem and friendship for Mr. Ferrars; but do you not perceive that my interest on such an occasion would be perfectly unnecessary?

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To see samples from other sources, click a word sense below:
as in: perceive the system as unfair Define
to view in a certain way so as to form a belief or opinion
as in: though blind, can perceive light Define
to become aware of -- especially by using the senses (to see, hear, smell, feel, or taste)
Show Multiple Meanings
Go to Book Vocabulary
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