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Nicholas Nickleby
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Nicholas Nickleby
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as in: a pleasant countenance Define
facial expression; or face; or composure
  • with the faintest trace of a grin lingering in his countenance.

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  • She has a pleasant countenance.
  • Her countenance grew stern.

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as in: giving countenance Define
to tolerate, approve, or show favor or support
  • ...would render him no countenance or assistance.
  • …and modestly but firmly expressed his hope that the good old gentleman would, under such circumstances as he described, hold him justified in adopting the extreme course of interfering between parent and child, and upholding the latter in his disobedience; even though his horror and dread of his father might seem, and would doubtless be represented as, a thing so repulsive and unnatural, as to render those who countenanced him in it, fit objects of general detestation and abhorrence.

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  • We will not countenance torture.
  • They countenance and support terrorism.

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unspecified meaning
  • A very strongly-marked countenance for the purpose, sir.
  • ’That’s a pity,’ said the owner of the good-humoured countenance.

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  • Pray don’t trouble yourself to inquire,’ said Miss Squeers, producing that change of countenance which children call making a face.
  • ’Sit down, my dear,’ said the gentleman: first staring Miss Nickleby out of countenance, and then grinning in delight at the achievement.
  • ’I will twist his demd nose off his countenance for leaving such a very pretty creature all alone by herself,’ said her husband.
  • ’Ordinary!’ cried Miss Knag with a countenance beaming delight; ’and awkward!
  • ’What a very strongly marked countenance your uncle has!’ said Mrs Nickleby, quite struck with his parting look.
  • Kate complied, though not without some embarrassment, with this request, and Mrs Wititterly took a languid survey of her countenance, which lasted some two or three minutes.
  • As Miss La Creevy spoke, she held up an ivory countenance intersected with very perceptible sky-blue veins, and regarded it with so much complacency, that Nicholas quite envied her.
  • The expression of a man’s face is commonly a help to his thoughts, or glossary on his speech; but the countenance of Newman Noggs, in his ordinary moods, was a problem which no stretch of ingenuity could solve.

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  • ’It is a pretty, bewitching little demd countenance, and it should not be out of humour, for it spoils its loveliness, and makes it cross and gloomy like a frightful, naughty, demd hobgoblin.’
  • She raised her veil, for an instant, while she preferred the inquiry, and disclosed a countenance of most uncommon beauty, though shaded by a cloud of sadness, which, in one so young, was doubly remarkable.
  • And as he delivered the reply, Miss Squeers burst into a shower of tears; arising in part from desperate vexation, and in part from an impotent desire to lacerate somebody’s countenance with her fair finger-nails.
  • Besides these, there was a long row of boys waiting, with countenances of no pleasant anticipation, to be treacled; and another file, who had just escaped from the infliction, making a variety of wry mouths indicative of anything but satisfaction.
  • Here, both Mr and Mrs Wititterly, who had talked rather at the Nicklebys than to each other, left off speaking, and looked at their two hearers, with an expression of countenance which seemed to say, ’What do you think of all this?’
  • Snawley was a sleek, flat-nosed man, clad in sombre garments, and long black gaiters, and bearing in his countenance an expression of much mortification and sanctity; so, his smiling without any obvious reason was the more remarkable.
  • The young lady did as she was requested, and the three other little girls were successively hoisted up to the collector’s countenance, and subjected to the same process, which was afterwards repeated on them by the majority of those present.
  • Uttering a low querulous growl, the speaker, whose harsh countenance was the very epitome of selfishness, raked the scanty fire nearly out of the grate, and, emptying the glass which Noggs had pushed towards him, inquired where he kept his coals.
  • ’Excuse my saying so,’ said the manager, leaning over to Nicholas, and sinking his voice, ’but what a capital countenance your friend has got!’
  • The countenance of Nicholas fell, and he gazed ruefully at the fire.
  • ’SHE astonished ME!’ returned Mr Crummles, with a very serious countenance.
  • ’You have much too open and generous a countenance for that.’
  • ’Not THAT,’ said Mr Wititterly, looking about him with a serious countenance.
  • There was not the smallest speculation, however, in the countenance of Newman Noggs.
  • ’I never thought of that,’ rejoined Newman, his countenance falling more and more.
  • ’There is quite a bloom upon your demd countenance,’ said Mr Mantalini, seating himself unbidden, and arranging his hair and whiskers.
  • ’I have made up my mind,’ said Madame Mantalini, as tokens of impatience manifested themselves in Ralph’s countenance, ’to allowance him.’
  • ’Yes, a coach, sir,’ replied Squeers, feasting his eyes upon the countenance of Smike.
  • ’And yet you came along at a tidy pace too,’ observed the coachman, looking over his shoulder at Nicholas with no very pleasant expression of countenance.
  • On my reverting to some other topic that we had been discussing, he recovered immediately; but, though I tried him again and again, I never approached the question of the school, even if he were in the middle of a laugh, without observing that his countenance fell, and that he became uncomfortable.
  • Miss Knag vanished without another word, and in all reasonable time was replaced by Kate, who took off the new bonnets and put on the old ones: blushing very much to find that the old lord and the two young ladies were staring her out of countenance all the time.
  • The four-and-twenty Lincoln greens of Von Koeldwethout exchanged vows of eternal friendship with twelve Lincoln greens of Von Swillenhausen, and promised the old baron that they would drink his wine "Till all was blue"—meaning probably until their whole countenances had acquired the same tint as their noses.
  • ’I will not look for blushes in such a quarter,’ said Miss Squeers, haughtily, ’for that countenance is a stranger to everything but hignominiousness and red-faced boldness.’
  • ’Damn your obstinacy, Tim Linkinwater,’ said brother Charles, looking at him without the faintest spark of anger, and with a countenance radiant with attachment to the old clerk.
  • It was a fortunate circumstance for Miss Fanny Squeers, that when her worthy papa returned home on the night of the small tea-party, he was what the initiated term ’too far gone’ to observe the numerous tokens of extreme vexation of spirit which were plainly visible in her countenance.
  • Thinking it best to take the hint in good part, Nicholas descended, without further remonstrance, but with a countenance bespeaking anything rather than the hope and rapture of a passionate lover.
  • He wore a sprinkling of powder upon his head, as if to make himself look benevolent; but if that were his purpose, he would perhaps have done better to powder his countenance also, for there was something in its very wrinkles, and in his cold restless eye, which seemed to tell of cunning that would announce itself in spite of him.
  • It is all comprised in one street of gloomy lodging-houses, from whose windows, in vacation-time, there frown long melancholy rows of bills, which say, as plainly as did the countenances of their occupiers, ranged on ministerial and opposition benches in the session which slumbers with its fathers, ’To Let’, ’To Let’.
  • Mr Squeers made a plunge into the crowd, and at one dive, caught a very little boy, habited still in his night-gear, and the perplexed expression of whose countenance, as he was brought forward, seemed to intimate that he was as yet uncertain whether he was about to be punished or rewarded for the suggestion.
  • When he awoke next morning, and tried to recollect his dreams, which had been all connected with his recent sojourn at Dotheboys Hall, he sat up, rubbed his eyes and stared—not with the most composed countenance possible—at some motionless object which seemed to be stationed within a few yards in front of him.
  • It was, indeed, the collector of water-rates who, regarding Nicholas with a fixed look and immovable countenance, shook hands with most portentous solemnity, and sat himself down in a seat by the chimney-corner.
  • ’It is the face, the countenance, the expression,’ cried Mr Pyke, falling into his chair with a miniature in his hand; ’feebly portrayed, imperfectly caught, but still THE face, THE countenance, THE expression.’
  • ’It is the face, the countenance, the expression,’ cried Mr Pyke, falling into his chair with a miniature in his hand; ’feebly portrayed, imperfectly caught, but still THE face, THE countenance, THE expression.’
  • He waited to hear more with a countenance of some indignation, for the tone of speech had been anything but respectful, and the appearance of the individual whom he presumed to have been the speaker was coarse and swaggering.
  • The poor girl, who was so overwhelmed with confusion that she scarcely knew what she did, had determined to remain perfectly quiet; but fearing that by so doing she might seem to countenance Sir Mulberry’s boast, which had been uttered with great coarseness and vulgarity of manner, raised her eyes, and looked him in the face.
  • To judge from the glow which suffused the poor girl’s countenance after this speech, Mrs Wititterly might, with some show of reason, have been supposed to have imparted to it some of that artificial bloom which decorated her own.
  • CHAPTER 14 Having the Misfortune to treat of none but Common People, is necessarily of a Mean and Vulgar Character In that quarter of London in which Golden Square is situated, there is a bygone, faded, tumble-down street, with two irregular rows of tall meagre houses, which seem to have stared each other out of countenance years ago.
  • The page disappeared on this errand, and after a short interval, during which not a word was spoken on either side, opened the door for an important gentleman of about eight-and-thirty, of rather plebeian countenance, and with a very light head of hair, who leant over Mrs Wititterly for a little time, and conversed with her in whispers.
  • As this thought occurred to the good lady, her countenance unconsciously assumed that compound expression of simpering and sleepiness which, being common to all such portraits, is perhaps one reason why they are always so charming and agreeable.
  • It was; for the infant phenomenon, though of short stature, had a comparatively aged countenance, and had moreover been precisely the same age—not perhaps to the full extent of the memory of the oldest inhabitant, but certainly for five good years.
  • His countenance relaxed, and he raised his glass to his mouth with an air of greater enjoyment of its contents than he had before evinced.
  • ’Surely, surely,’ returned brother Charles, looking at him with an anxious countenance.
  • Ralph glanced keenly at him, but the clear eye and open countenance of the honest old merchant underwent no change of expression, and met his look without reserve.
  • Others, were fantastically grim and gaunt, as having drawn themselves up to their utmost height, and put on their fiercest looks to stare all comers out of countenance.
  • Perhaps something of what he thought was expressed in his countenance, for the sick man, turning towards him with great asperity, demanded to know if he waited for a receipt.
  • He had arranged a few regular lessons for the boys; and one night, as he paced up and down the dismal schoolroom, his swollen heart almost bursting to think that his protection and countenance should have increased the misery of the wretched being whose peculiar destitution had awakened his pity, he paused mechanically in a dark corner where sat the object of his thoughts.
  • It was with a very melancholy laugh that Newman Noggs concluded this soliloquy; and it was with a very melancholy shake of the head, and a very rueful countenance, that he turned about, and went plodding on his way.
  • On tiptoe it was destined to remain, however, until afternoon; when Squeers, having refreshed himself with his dinner, and further strengthened himself by an extra libation or so, made his appearance (accompanied by his amiable partner) with a countenance of portentous import, and a fearful instrument of flagellation, strong, supple, wax-ended, and new,—in short, purchased that morning, expressly for the occasion.
  • Her attendant—for she had one—was a red-faced, round-eyed, slovenly girl, who, from a certain roughness about the bare arms that peeped from under her draggled shawl, and the half-washed-out traces of smut and blacklead which tattooed her countenance, was clearly of a kin with the servants-of-all-work on the form: between whom and herself there had passed various grins and glances, indicative of the freemasonry of the craft.
  • His features presented the remains of a handsome countenance, but one in which the embers of strong and impetuous passions were easier to be traced than any expression which would have rendered a far plainer face much more prepossessing.
  • Mr Crummles, on the other hand, assumed the look and gait of a hardened despot; but they both attracted some notice from many of the passers-by, and when they heard a whisper of ’Mr and Mrs Crummles!’ or saw a little boy run back to stare them in the face, the severe expression of their countenances relaxed, for they felt it was popularity.
  • Pale and haggard faces, lank and bony figures, children with the countenances of old men, deformities with irons upon their limbs, boys of stunted growth, and others whose long meagre legs would hardly bear their stooping bodies, all crowded on the view together; there were the bleared eye, the hare-lip, the crooked foot, and every ugliness or distortion that told of unnatural aversion conceived by parents for their offspring, or of young lives which, from the earliest dawn of infancy,…
  • As Ralph looked vacantly out across the yard towards the window of the other office, he became suddenly aware of the earnest observation of Newman Noggs, who, with his red nose almost touching the glass, feigned to be mending a pen with a rusty fragment of a knife, but was in reality staring at his employer with a countenance of the closest and most eager scrutiny.
  • Nicholas was somewhat at a loss, on entering the theatre at night, to account for the unusual perturbation and excitement visible in the countenances of all the company, but he was not long in doubt as to the cause, for before he could make any inquiry respecting it Mr Crummles approached, and in an agitated tone of voice, informed him that there was a London manager in the boxes.
  • …Reader with the Cause and Origin of the Interruption described in the last Chapter, and with some other Matters necessary to be known Newman Noggs scrambled in violent haste upstairs with the steaming beverage, which he had so unceremoniously snatched from the table of Mr Kenwigs, and indeed from the very grasp of the water-rate collector, who was eyeing the contents of the tumbler, at the moment of its unexpected abstraction, with lively marks of pleasure visible in his countenance.
  • …that lady a sitting for the portrait upon which she was engaged; and towards the full perfection of which, Miss La Creevy had had the street-door case brought upstairs, in order that she might be the better able to infuse into the counterfeit countenance of Miss Nickleby, a bright salmon flesh-tint which she had originally hit upon while executing the miniature of a young officer therein contained, and which bright salmon flesh-tint was considered, by Miss La Creevy’s chief friends and…
  • ’That it happened this way—that your nephew met him at a coffeehouse, fell upon him with the most demneble ferocity, followed him to his cab, swore he would ride home with him, if he rode upon the horse’s back or hooked himself on to the horse’s tail; smashed his countenance, which is a demd fine countenance in its natural state; frightened the horse, pitched out Sir Mulberry and himself, and—’
  • ’That it happened this way—that your nephew met him at a coffeehouse, fell upon him with the most demneble ferocity, followed him to his cab, swore he would ride home with him, if he rode upon the horse’s back or hooked himself on to the horse’s tail; smashed his countenance, which is a demd fine countenance in its natural state; frightened the horse, pitched out Sir Mulberry and himself, and—’
  • This Mr Frank Cheeryble, although, to judge from what had recently taken place, a hot-headed young man (which is not an absolute miracle and phenomenon in nature), was a sprightly, good-humoured, pleasant fellow, with much both in his countenance and disposition that reminded Nicholas very strongly of the kind-hearted brothers.
  • Ay, sir,’ he continued, bending eagerly forward, and addressing Nicholas, as he marked the change of his countenance, ’to restore a parent his child; his son, sir; trepanned, waylaid, and guarded at every turn by you, with the base design of robbing him some day of any little wretched pittance of which he might become possessed.’
  • When John Browdie came to be spoken of, he dropped, by slow and gradual degrees, into a chair, and rubbing, his hands upon his knees—quicker and quicker as the story reached its climax—burst, at last, into a laugh composed of one loud sonorous ’Ha! ha!’ having given vent to which, his countenance immediately fell again as he inquired, with the utmost anxiety, whether it was probable that John Browdie and Squeers had come to blows.
  • ’But she can earn money herself, Peg,’ said Arthur Gride, eagerly watching what effect his communication produced upon the old woman’s countenance: ’she can draw, paint, work all manner of pretty things for ornamenting stools and chairs: slippers, Peg, watch-guards, hair-chains, and a thousand little dainty trifles that I couldn’t give you half the names of.
  • …(but that was evidently accident; not his ordinary way of wearing it,) with such a pleasant smile playing about his mouth, and such a comical expression of mingled slyness, simplicity, kind-heartedness, and good-humour, lighting up his jolly old face, that Nicholas would have been content to have stood there and looked at him until evening, and to have forgotten, meanwhile, that there was such a thing as a soured mind or a crabbed countenance to be met with in the whole wide world.
  • Whether it was the absence of the fetters or not, it made no very deep impression on Mr Lenville’s adversary, however, but rather seemed to increase the good-humour expressed in his countenance; in which stage of the contest, one or two gentlemen, who had come out expressly to witness the pulling of Nicholas’s nose, grew impatient, murmuring that if it were to be done at all it had better be done at once, and that if Mr Lenville didn’t mean to do it he had better say so, and not keep…
  • While one detachment rushed to the door and locked it, and another mounted on the desks and forms, the stoutest (and consequently the newest) boy seized the cane, and confronting Mrs Squeers with a stern countenance, snatched off her cap and beaver bonnet, put them on his own head, armed himself with the wooden spoon, and bade her, on pain of death, go down upon her knees and take a dose directly.
  • Matters were at this point, as Newman Noggs was heard to limp past the door on his way upstairs; when Mrs Kenwigs, gaining new hope from the sound of his footsteps, hastily removed from her countenance as many traces of her late emotion as were effaceable on so short a notice: and presenting herself before him, and representing their dilemma, entreated that he would escort Morleena to the hairdresser’s shop.
  • The better informed among the sex, however, made light of this assertion, for however willing they were (and they were very willing) to do full justice to the handsome face and figure of the proprietor, they held the countenance of the dark gentleman in the window to be an exquisite and abstract idea of masculine beauty, realised sometimes, perhaps, among angels and military men, but very rarely embodied to gladden the eyes of mortals.
  • The toast was scarcely drunk with all honour to Tim Linkinwater, when the sturdiest and jolliest subordinate elbowed himself a little in advance of his fellows, and exhibiting a very hot and flushed countenance, pulled a single lock of grey hair in the middle of his forehead as a respectful salute to the company, and delivered himself as follows—rubbing the palms of his hands very hard on a blue cotton handkerchief as he did so: ’We’re allowed to take a liberty once a year, gen’lemen,…

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as in: a pleasant countenance Define
facial expression; or face; or composure
as in: giving countenance Define
to tolerate, approve, or show favor or support
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