He longed to assure himself of a tacit assent from her.
Maggie felt it was time to speak; it would only be unkind now to assent by silence.
He had no male audience to-day except Mr. Moss, who knew nothing, as he said, of the "natur’ o’ mills," and could only assent to Mr. Tulliver’s arguments on the a priori ground of family relationship and monetary obligation; but Mr. Tulliver did not talk with the futile intention of convincing his audience, he talked to relieve himself; while good Mr. Moss made strong efforts to keep his eyes wide open, in spite of the sleepiness which an unusually good dinner produced in his…
Not that Mrs. Tulliver’s feeble beseeching could have had this feather’s weight in virtue of her single personality; but whenever she departed from entire assent to her husband, he saw in her the representative of the Dodson family; and it was a guiding principle with Mr. Tulliver to let the Dodsons know that they were not to domineer over him, or—more specifically—that a male Tulliver was far more than equal to four female Dodsons, even though one of them was Mrs. Glegg.
She had a way of not assenting at once to the observations current in good society, and of saying that she didn’t know whether those observations were true or not, which gave her an air of gaucherie, and impeded the even flow of conversation; but it is a fact capable of an amiable interpretation that ladies are not the worst disposed toward a new acquaintance of their own sex because she has points of inferiority.
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She takes my silence as assent.
Sabaa Tahir -- An Ember in the Ashes
Their murmurs of assent and disapproval gave her a sense of order and rightness.