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  • Both of us were feeling the mild and pleasant strain of abstinence, and now, safely removed from curious eyes and ears, we came together with an impact that made my lips and fingers tingle with a rush of blood.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • It was a personal feat of abstinence.
    Markus Zusak  --  The Book Thief
  • This abstinence, so remarkable in an Indian, when he possessed the means of satisfying hunger, at length attracted the notice of Heyward.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Last of the Mohicans
  • But I may as well say—en passant, as the French remark—that I myself—that is to say, Jack Bunger, late of the reverend clergy—am a strict total abstinence man; I never drink—
    Herman Melville  --  Moby Dick

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  • So many loathsome animals inhabited the prison, that their noise did not, in general, awake him; but whether abstinence had quickened his faculties, or whether the noise was really louder than usual, Edmond raised his head and listened.
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Count of Monte Cristo
  • Three small whiskies had gone to his head and Gallaher’s strong cigar had confused his mind, for he was a delicate and abstinent person.
    James Joyce  --  Dubliners
  • "You don’t eat ’em," returned Mr. Pumblechook, sighing and nodding his head several times, as if he might have expected that, and as if abstinence from watercresses were consistent with my downfall.
    Charles Dickens  --  Great Expectations
  • The Enemy’s demand on humans takes the form of a dilemma; either complete abstinence or unmitigated monogamy.
    C.S. Lewis  --  The Screwtape Letters
  • He spoke to Abra of the necessity for abstinence and decided that he would live a life of celibacy.
    John Steinbeck  --  East of Eden
  • He preserved this opinion even after the feast, with the remnants of which he repaired his own long abstinence; but when in the evening he made his master’s bed, the chimeras of Planchet faded away.
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Three Musketeers

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  • You wish a real leave of abstinence.
    F. Scott Fitzgerald  --  Tender is the Night
  • It was almost no trick at all, he saw, to turn vice into virtue and slander into truth, impotence into abstinence, arrogance into humility, plunder into philanthropy, thievery into honor, blasphemy into wisdom, brutality into patriotism, and sadism into justice.
    Joseph Heller  --  Catch-22
  • I vainly reminded him of his protracted abstinence from food: if he stirred to touch anything in compliance with my entreaties, if he stretched his hand out to get a piece of bread, his fingers clenched before they reached it, and remained on the table, forgetful of their aim.
    Emily Bronte  --  Wuthering Heights
  • The frequency of the warnings and the continued abstinence of Mr B with respect to Hiroshima had made its citizens jittery; a rumour was going around that the Americans were saving something special for the city.
    John Hersey  --  Hiroshima
  • Refrain to-night; And that shall lend a kind of easiness To the next abstinence: the next more easy; For use almost can change the stamp of nature, And either curb the devil, or throw him out With wondrous potency.
    William Shakespeare  --  Hamlet, Prince of Denmark
  • The bargain might appear unequal; but there was still another consideration in the scales; for while Jekyll would suffer smartingly in the fires of abstinence, Hyde would be not even conscious of all that he had lost.
    Robert Louis Stevenson  --  Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
  • Now gripping this, hefting a pair of spears, he joined the battle, formidable as some hill-bred lion, ravenous for meat after long abstinence.
    Homer  --  The Iliad
  • As Shiftman writes: Chippers’ smoking varies considerably from day to day, and their smoking patterns often include days of complete abstinence.
    Malcolm Gladwell  --  The Tipping Point
  • And so they lived in their prayers, and fastings, and great abstinence.
    Thomas Malory  --  Le Morte D’Arthur
  • Fernanda carried a delicate calendar with small golden keys on which her spiritual adviser had marked in purple ink the dates of venereal abstinence.
    Gabriel Garcia Marquez  --  One Hundred Years of Solitude
  • Building is not done by abstaining from demolition; centuries of sitting and waiting in such abstinence will not raise one single girder for you to abstain from demolishing-and now you can no longer say to me, the builder: ’Produce, and feed us in exchange for our not destroying your production.’
    Ayn Rand  --  Atlas Shrugged
  • Bold deed thou hast presumed, adventurous Eve, And peril great provoked, who thus hast dared, Had it been only coveting to eye That sacred fruit, sacred to abstinence, Much more to taste it under ban to touch.
    John Milton  --  Paradise Lost
  • Florentino Ariza had stripped her of the virginity of a conventional marriage, more pernicious than congenital virginity or the abstinence of widowhood.
    Gabriel Garcia Marquez  --  Love in the Time of Cholera
  • But the success has not hitherto been answerable, partly by some error in the quantum or composition, and partly by the perverseness of lads, to whom this bolus is so nauseous, that they generally steal aside, and discharge it upwards, before it can operate; neither have they been yet persuaded to use so long an abstinence, as the prescription requires.
    Jonathan Swift  --  Gulliver’s Travels
  • Bitzer knuckled his forehead again, in a sneaking manner, and seemed at once particularly impressed and depressed by the instance last given of Mr. Bounderby’s moral abstinence.
    Charles Dickens  --  Hard Times
  • Having dispelled the cold, he turned eagerly to the smoking mess which was placed before him, and ate with a haste and an apparent relish, that seemed to betoken long abstinence from food.
    Sir Walter Scott  --  Ivanhoe
  • But if twenty came and sat in my house there was nothing said about dinner, though there might be bread enough for two, more than if eating were a forsaken habit; but we naturally practised abstinence; and this was never felt to be an offence against hospitality, but the most proper and considerate course.
    Henry David Thoreau  --  Walden
  • "4 "What deity does Amaterasu worship in abstinence in the Plain of High Heaven?
    Joseph Campbell  --  The Hero With a Thousand Faces
  • Why such unnatural abstinence?
    Edith Wharton  --  The House of Mirth
  • I wasn’t sold on his life of abstinence, and I resented him for curbing my appetite.
    Stephenie Meyer  --  Twilight
  • The school board has decided that "Merryweather High-Home of the Trojans" didn’t send a strong abstinence message, so they have transformed us into the Blue Devils.
    Laurie Halse Anderson  --  Speak
  • I have practised abstinence myself for years, and had my time of fasting, too, but now I find myself once more beneath the sign of Aquarius, a dark and humid constellation.
    Hermann Hesse  --  Steppenwolf
  • To Dorothea this was adorable genuineness, and religious abstinence from that artificiality which uses up the soul in the efforts of pretence.
    George Eliot  --  Middlemarch
  • They may practice abstinence or birth control— other than slaughtering the newborn-until the entire band reaches an age where new blood will soon be needed.
    Dan Simmons  --  Hyperion
  • I have deliver’d to Lord Angelo,— A man of stricture and firm abstinence,— My absolute power and place here in Vienna, And he supposes me travell’d to Poland; For so I have strew’d it in the common ear, And so it is received.
    William Shakespeare  --  Measure for Measure
  • Sir Mulberry drank to recompense himself for his recent abstinence; the young lord, to drown his indignation; and the remainder of the party, because the wine was of the best and they had nothing to pay.
    Charles Dickens  --  Nicholas Nickleby
  • The years behind him were littered with similar surrenders - feast days and fast days and days of abstinence had been the first to go: then he had ceased to trouble more than occasionally about his breviary - and finally he had left it behind altogether at the port in one of his periodic attempts at escape.
    Graham Greene  --  The Power and the Glory
  • He certainly wished her to go willingly, but he as certainly wished her to be heartily sick of home before her visit ended; and that a little abstinence from the elegancies and luxuries of Mansfield Park would bring her mind into a sober state, and incline her to a juster estimate of the value of that home of greater permanence, and equal comfort, of which she had the offer.
    Jane Austen  --  Mansfield Park
  • to the admiration of the throng of pilgrims and pray; it was another’s to go naked and crawl around on all fours; it was another’s to drag about with him, year in and year out, eighty pounds of iron; it was another’s to never lie down when he slept, but to stand among the thorn-bushes and snore when there were pilgrims around to look; a woman, who had the white hair of age, and no other apparel, was black from crown to heel with forty-seven years of holy abstinence from water.
    Mark Twain  --  A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court
  • a distinguished figure in all neighboring eyes, dispensing treats and benefits to others with well-judged liberality, and being pronounced one of the finest young fellows of those parts; nay, he determined to achieve these things sooner or later; but his practical shrewdness told him that the means no such achievements could only lie for him in present abstinence and self-denial; there were certain milestones to be passed, and one of the first was the payment of his father’s debts.
    George Eliot  --  The Mill on the Floss
  • At odd moments, no doubt, in the furthest recesses of his brain, where his determination had thrust it away, and thanks to the length of the interval, the three weeks’ separation to which he had agreed, it was with pleasure that he would consider the idea that he would see Odette again on her return; but it was also with so little impatience that he began to ask himself whether he would not readily consent to the doubling of the period of so easy an abstinence.
    Marcel Proust  --  Swann’s Way
  • in this house was perfect master of his own time: and as he might at his pleasure satisfy all his appetites within the restrictions only of law, virtue, and religion; so he might, if his health required, or his inclination prompted him to temperance, or even to abstinence, absent himself from any meals, or retire from them, whenever he was so disposed, without even a sollicitation to the contrary: for, indeed, such sollicitations from superiors always savour very strongly of commands.
    Henry Fielding  --  Tom Jones
  • Your stomachs are too young, And abstinence engenders maladies.
    William Shakespeare  --  Love’s Labour’s Lost
  • After a period of computer celibacy, she was suffering from massive cyber-abstinence.
    Stieg Larsson  --  The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest
  • What they cared about was convincing Hans Castorp to renounce his abstinence.
    Thomas Mann  --  The Magic Mountain
  • My abstinence felt noble because it was so very difficult.
    Abraham Verghese  --  Cutting for Stone
  • To the average person, such abstinence doesn’t sound difficult, let alone heroic.
    W. William Winokur  --  The Perfect Game
  • But the president has been the picture of abstinence, neither smoking a cigar nor taking a sip of alcohol.
    Bill O’Reilly and Martin Dugard  --  Killing Kennedy
  • It is a non-sectarian program emphasizing the love of God and a personal relationship with Jesus Christ, and drug abstinence.
    Tim Tebow  --  Through My Eyes
  • She didn’t seem like the woman who ripped the cable box out of the wall or lectured us for hours on the virtues of abstinence.
    Kami Garcia & Margaret Stohl  --  Beautiful Creatures
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