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utter
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Atlas Shrugged
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utter
Used In
Atlas Shrugged
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unspecified meaning
  • It was the one sentence which, she felt sure, he had never uttered before; a man could not reverse himself so late in life.
  • He looked at her; his face assumed the satisfaction of a person about to utter something that has the power to hurt.

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  • It sounded like some sort of monstrous corruption that precluded the possibility of wondering whether anyone could mean it; he wondered only what was the point of uttering it.
  • But the feeling was the product of a thought he would not utter.
  • He knew the words which he had not uttered.
  • He uttered nothing but uncertain opinions about physical nature-and nothing but categorical imperatives about men.
  • She did not want to utter a single unnecessary word; but she could not stop herself: she kept seeing the figure of the old charwoman scrubbing the steps.
  • It would be so easy to squash Philip by returning the insult, he thought-by returning an insult which would be deadly because it would be true-that he could not bring himself to utter it.
  • He wanted to utter an angry denial, but she was smiling at him as if this were merely a conversational joke, and he had no capacity for the sort of conversations which were not supposed to be meant, so he did not answer.
  • She had ordered him out of her office, and had sat in incredulous horror before the fact that the most vicious statement she had ever heard had been uttered in a tone of moral righteousness.

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  • "How did you get here?" was the first thing James Taggart found himself able to utter.
  • "If you think it’s proper to utter such-"
  • The secretary smiled with sudden animation, as if she were about to utter an enthusiastic compliment, but the smile vanished abruptly.
  • If you can refute a single sentence I uttered, madame, I shall hear it gratefully.
  • She whispered, "AH right, Hank, I won’t thank you," the tone of her voice and the look of her eyes making it a lie by the time it was uttered.
  • The sentence sounded involuntary, as if, trying to suppress the sound of emotion, he had uttered suppressed words.
  • "That is what I want to do-" she answered, and stopped before she uttered the rest of the answer in her mind: more than anything else in the world.
  • He listened, as if it were irrelevant, and then he uttered the thing from which he had to recover, "But we thought you were dead."
  • The movement suggested a strict formality, the denial of any attempt at presumption-but it stressed the intimacy of the fact that he uttered no word of greeting or explanation.
  • Through his sleepless night, then through the taut concentration on the duties of the day, his answer to the message had kept beating in his mind, the answer he would never have a chance to utter.
  • The cry she uttered was one she had never permitted herself before, because she made it her pride always to answer it herself-but she saw a man standing a few steps away, she did not see that he was a ragged bum, and she uttered the cry because it was the plea of reason and he was a human figure: "What are we going to do?"
  • She thought suddenly of those modern college-infected parasites who assumed a sickening air of moral self-righteousness whenever they uttered the standard bromides about their concern for the welfare of others.
  • she thought, his course was just, and this was the horror of it, that there was no other course for justice to select, that she could not condemn him, that she could neither approve nor utter a word of reproach.
  • The cry she uttered was one she had never permitted herself before, because she made it her pride always to answer it herself-but she saw a man standing a few steps away, she did not see that he was a ragged bum, and she uttered the cry because it was the plea of reason and he was a human figure: "What are we going to do?"
  • It’s an interesting characteristic of epochs such as ours that people begin to be afraid of saying the things they want to say-and afraid, when questioned, to remain silent about things they’d prefer never to utter.
  • He glanced straight at her, his eyes drawn narrow by such an intensity of earnestness that the glance was almost a threat, and she knew that whatever the years had meant to him, "amusement" was the one word she had no right to utter.
  • But there was another, uglier dread: the sordid shape of self-sacrifice, the suspicion, not to be uttered about him, that he wished to remove himself from her path and let its emptiness force her back to the man who was his best-loved friend.
  • The most depraved sentence you can now utter is to ask: Whose reason?
  • Dr. Stadler could have regarded the sentence as conceivable, had it been uttered with hatred, envy or malice; but the absence of any such emotion, the casual ease of the voice, an ease suggesting a chuckle, hit him like a moment’s glimpse of a realm that could not be taken as part of reality; the thing spreading down to his stomach was cold terror.
  • Your friends in Washington never uttered a word about it.
  • She looked as if nothing could reach her, because her dying words had been uttered.
  • He was looking straight at her and she saw a brief sparkle in his eyes, which was not a smile, but almost as if he had heard the cry she had not uttered.
  • It was an experience she had not known since childhood —the experience of being held for three hours by a play that told a story she had not seen before, in lines she had not heard, uttering a theme that had not been picked from the hand-me-downs of the centuries.
  • Mouch waited, but no one ventured the question that was on everyone’s mind, so he made the effort to utter stiffly, "I don’t understand you, Mr. Thompson."
  • She did not know how long a span of silence had stretched between them, she was startled by her own voice and by the—question she had not intended to utter.
  • They walked in silence, but the sound of their steps, blending into a single, steady beat, was like a speech to be grasped and not to be uttered in any other form.
  • She went from railroad executives to wealthy shippers to Washington officials and back to the railroad-by cab, by phone, by wire-pursuing a trail of half-uttered hints.
  • He watched them utter mechanical generalities, recite vague phrases of fraudulent evidence, play an intricate game of stretching words to convey no facts and no meaning.
  • The sentence Rearden had uttered was: "She will probably try to take the shirt off my back with the freight rates she’s going to charge, but— I’ll be able to meet them."
  • It was less than an hour ago that she had heard him utter that sentence, and his voice still seemed to ring in the air of the streets, merging into a distant hint of laughter.
  • Dagny-he thought desperately-Dagny, who had never said a word about his life at home, who had never made a claim, uttered a reproach or asked a question-he could not appear before her with his wife, he could not let her see him as the husband being proudly shown off-he wished he could die now, in this moment, before he committed this action-because he knew that he would commit it.
  • It had been easy to watch Mr. Thompson’s gulping smiles and his repeated cries of "That’s my girl!" uttered with glances of triumph at his assistants, the triumph of a man whose judgment in trusting her had been vindicated.
  • It was strange, she thought, to obtain news by means of nothing but denials, as if existence had ceased, facts had vanished and only the frantic negatives uttered by officials and columnists gave any clue to the reality they were denying.
  • Mr. Thompson looked at him silently-and Galt saw, in the tightened lips, in the jutting chin, in the narrowed eyes, the look of an adolescent bully about to utter that philosophical argument which is expressed by the sentence: I’ll bash your teeth in.
  • Because he felt an exultant desire to laugh-as he had laughed at the news of Wyatt’s fire, as he had laughed at the crash of d’Anconia Copper-and knew that if he did, the thing he feared would hold him, would not release him this time, and he would never see his mills again-Rearden drew back and, for a moment, kept his lips closed tight to utter no sound.
  • At a time when the voices of railroad officials uttered nothing but sounds designed to avoid communication, the voices of nameless men were her last link to the system, the last sparks of reason and tortured honesty flashing briefly through the miles of Taggart track.
  • There was no reason to feel more revulsion than usual, she thought; he had merely uttered the things which were preached, heard and accepted everywhere; but this creed was usually expounded in the third person, and Jim had had the open effrontery to expound it in the first.
  • Dropping below the level of a savage, who believes that the magic words he utters have the power to alter reality, they believe that reality can be altered by the power of the words they do not utter-and their magic tool is the blank-out, the pretense that nothing can come into existence past the voodoo of their refusal to identify it.
  • He seemed eager to display her in the best drawing rooms of the city, and he never uttered a word of reproach for her ignorance, for her awkwardness, for those terrible moments when a silent exchange of glances among the guests and a burst of blood to her cheekbones told her that she had said the wrong thing again.
  • Dropping below the level of a savage, who believes that the magic words he utters have the power to alter reality, they believe that reality can be altered by the power of the words they do not utter-and their magic tool is the blank-out, the pretense that nothing can come into existence past the voodoo of their refusal to identify it.
  • …the spaced clarity of the sounds he pronounced with full knowledge of their meaning-but she knew that she was witnessing the most solemn moment it would ever be given her to witness, she was seeing a man’s naked soul and the cost it had paid to utter these words, she was hearing an echo of the day when he had pronounced that oath for the first time and with full knowledge of the years ahead-she knew what manner of man had stood up to face six thousand others on a dark spring night and…
  • But today at the mills, we poured-" He stopped; he did not know what made him unable to utter the one thing he had come home to say; he added only, "It’s just that I …. forgot."
  • ’We know that we know nothing,’ they chatter, blanking out the fact that they are claiming knowledge-’There are no absolutes,’ they chatter, blanking out the fact that they are uttering an absolute-’You cannot prove that you exist or that you’re conscious,’ they chatter, blanking out the fact that proof presupposes existence, consciousness and a complex chain of knowledge: the existence of something to know, of a consciousness able to know it, and of a knowledge that has learned to…
  • …had called a meeting of the Terminal track laborers for the alleged purpose of boosting their morale, she had held the meeting twice, to face all the men in turn-she had repeated the same unintelligible speech, feeling a stab of shame at the empty generalities she uttered and, together, a stab of pride that it did not matter to her any longer-she had looked at the exhausted, brutalized faces of men who did not care whether they were ordered to work or to listen to meaningless sounds.
  • He had been considered profound for uttering such things as: "Freedom?
  • Then I wouldn’t know what to say," he answered-and felt a rush of blood to his brain, tight as a slap, realizing suddenly the double infamy of a lie uttered in protestation of honesty; he had said it sincerely, but it implied a boast to which he had no right any longer.
  • "The secret of transforming energy-" she began, and stopped, "I could tell it to you in fifteen minutes," he said, in answer to the desperate plea she had not uttered, "but there’s no power on earth that can force me to tell it.
  • Sure, I knew there was a lot of cowardice there, and envy and hypocrisy, but I thought that that was only the surface-now, when I’ve proved my case, when I’ve proved it so loudly!-I thought their real motive for inviting me was their appreciation of the Metal, and-" She smiled in the brief space of his pause; she knew the sentence he had stopped himself from uttering: " and for that, I would forgive anyone anything."
  • …to prove it by means of unconsciousness-he is asking you to step into a void outside of existence and consciousness to give him proof of both-he is asking you to become a zero gaining knowledge about a zero, "When he declares that an axiom is a matter of arbitrary choice and he doesn’t choose to accept the axiom that he exists, he blanks out the fact that he has accepted it by uttering that sentence, that the only way to reject it is to shut one’s mouth, expound no theories and die.

  • There are no more uses of "utter" in the book.


To see samples from other sources, click a word sense below:
as in: utter stupidity Define
complete or total (used as an intensifier--typically when stressing how bad something is)
as in: utter a complaint Define
say something aloud
as in: utter a sound Define
make a sound with the voice
Show Multiple Meanings (More common than this sense)
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