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asperity
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asperity


she asked, with a touch of asperity in her voice.
Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan  --  Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
  harshness of manner
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asperity asperities
Strongly Associated with:   aspersion
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Samples:
  • she asked, with a touch of asperity in her voice.
    Doyle, Sir Arthur Conan  --  Memoirs of Sherlock Holmes
  • ...answered her mother, with an asperity that she had never permitted to herself before.
    Hawthorne, Nathaniel  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • "This isn’t about Magnus," said Jocelyn with asperity.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Heavenly Fire
  • A semiliterate private in the 54th Pennsylvania, whose wife had rebuked him for thinking more of the Union than of her and the children, wrote to her with some asperity that "if the rebels would invade the north whad whoud become of you and my children …. thay woud be perfeck slaves thay whoud be triede like a doge …. and hour property wodden be worth a cent for thay wold take it to pay thair dates."
    James M. McPherson  --  What They Fought For - 1861-1865

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  • "I can dress the wound, yes," I said with considerable asperity.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • "And we would be prevented from telling you by the Law if we did know," said Cleophas with asperity.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Lost Souls
  • "Hold thy tongue, naughty child!" answered her mother, with an asperity that she had never permitted to herself before.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • ’You?’ they replied with asperity.
    Joseph Heller  --  Catch-22
  • But he was set right there by Mrs. Bennet, who assured him with some asperity that they were very well able to keep a good cook, and that her daughters had nothing to do in the kitchen.
    Jane Austen  --  Pride and Prejudice
  • ’I listen, Ron,’ said Hermione, with a touch of asperity.
    J.K. Rowling  --  Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix

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  • It is worthy of remark, as a curious physical instance of the efficacy of a sudden surprise in counteracting the effects of extreme fear, that her voice had quite recovered all its official asperity.
    Charles Dickens  --  Oliver Twist
  • Soft scene, daring demonstration, I would not have; and I stood in peril of both: a weapon of defence must be prepared — I whetted my tongue: as he reached me, I asked with asperity, "whom he was going to marry now?"
    Charlotte Bronte  --  Jane Eyre
  • While I was engaged on this translation, Professor Denys Page’s Bryn Mawr lectures, published as The Homeric Odyssey (Oxford, 1955), argued, or reargued, the case against "unity" with asperity and flourish.
    Homer  --  The Odyssey
  • That humid and congenial atmosphere which commonly adorned the view, veiling its harshness, and softening its asperities, had disappeared, the northern air poured across the waste of water so harsh and unmingled, that nothing was left to be conjectured by the eye, or fashioned by the fancy.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Last of the Mohicans
  • As for the chance episcopal perquisites, the fees for marriage bans, dispensations, private baptisms, sermons, benedictions, of churches or chapels, marriages, etc., the Bishop levied them on the wealthy with all the more asperity, since he bestowed them on the needy.
    Victor Hugo  --  Les Miserables
  • Amatis spoke with asperity.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Glass
  • "Now where," he answered with asperity, "where except in the great tea shop on the main street of the town?"
    Pearl S. Buck  --  The Good Earth
  • That was what she wanted—the asperity in his voice reproving her.
    Virginia Woolf  --  To the Lighthouse
  • —yet are they clearly wholesome, the more especially when one doth assuage the asperities of their nature by admixture of the tranquilizing juice of the wayward cabbage—
    Mark Twain  --  A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court
  • In the question of the grazing lands his peevish asperity is notorious and in Mr Cuffe’s hearing brought upon him from an indignant rancher a scathing retort couched in terms as straightforward as they were bucolic.
    James Joyce  --  Ulysses
  • "I wonder you remember those times, Esther," she returned with her old asperity.
    Charles Dickens  --  Bleak House
  • He replied with some asperity, "It might surprise you what them beasts can pull through."
    John Steinbeck  --  The Chrysanthemums
  • Her tone, as she uttered the exclamation, had a plaintive and really exquisite melody thrilling through it, yet without subduing a certain something which an obtuse auditor might still have mistaken for asperity.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The House of the Seven Gables
  • On the next day at breakfast, when Miss Osborne, with the asperity of her age and character, ventured to make some remark reflecting slightingly upon the Major’s appearance or behaviour—the master of the house interrupted her.
    William Makepeace Thackeray  --  Vanity Fair
  • …her my message; if she is agitated and disturbed at hearing my name; if she cannot rest upon her cushion, shouldst thou haply find her seated in the sumptuous state chamber proper to her rank; and should she be standing, observe if she poises herself now on one foot, now on the other; if she repeats two or three times the reply she gives thee; if she passes from gentleness to austerity, from asperity to tenderness; if she raises her hand to smooth her hair though it be not disarranged.
    Miguel de Cervantes  --  Don Quixote
  • "Would you make that remark to an English lady?" she enquired with soft asperity.
    Henry James  --  The Portrait of a Lady - Volumes 1 & 2
  • Tom relished this tune less than any that he had preceded it, for it began to wake up a sort of echo in his conscience; so he interrupted and said with decision, though without asperity, that he was not in a situation to help her, and wasn’t going to do it.
    Mark Twain  --  Pudd’nhead Wilson
  • Mr Nickleby looked very indignant at the handmaid on being thus corrected, and demanded with much asperity what she meant; which she was about to state, when a female voice proceeding from a perpendicular staircase at the end of the passage, inquired who was wanted.
    Charles Dickens  --  Nicholas Nickleby
  • For as that stone which by the asperity, and irregularity of Figure, takes more room from others, than it selfe fills; and for the hardnesse, cannot be easily made plain, and thereby hindereth the building, is by the builders cast away as unprofitable, and troublesome: so also, a man that by asperity of Nature, will strive to retain those things which to himselfe are superfluous, and to others necessary; and for the stubbornness of his Passions, cannot be corrected, is to be left, or…
    Thomas Hobbes  --  Leviathan
  • "What have I done now?" demanded Laurella with asperity.
    Grace MacGowan Cooke  --  The Power and the Glory
  • "Would you make that remark to an English lady?" she enquired with soft asperity.
    Henry James  --  The Portrait of a Lady - Volume 1
  • Jim Fletcher attached himself to the stranger, and now both respect and friendliness tempered his asperity.
    Zane Grey  --  The Lone Star Ranger
  • "Have you conversed freely with the girl?" the Sergeant demanded quickly, and with some asperity of manner.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Pathfinder
  • Each hillock, every rock, every stone, every asperity of the soil had its share of the luminous effulgence, and its shadow fell heavily on the soil.
    Jules Verne  --  A Journey to the Center of the Earth
  • He treated almost everybody on our block with a most uncharitable asperity and neither they, nor, of course, their children were slow to reciprocate.
    James Baldwin  --  Notes of a Native Son
  • "Allow me to point out, my man," the police officer rejoined with asperity, "that just now it’s you who’re troubling the peace of others."
    Albert Camus  --  The Plague
  • I seek wisdom tempered with charity, And I’m not one of those prudes whose asperity Is such that they fight for virtue tooth and nail, And scratch a man’s eyes out for being male.
    Jean-Baptiste Poquelin Moliere  --  Tartuffe
  • I think he is rather more striking now than ever, certainly more agreeable, as his asperity of temper is worn away.
    David McCullough  --  John Adams
  • As there are degrees of hardness in the hardest metal, and shades of colour in black itself, so, even in the asperity of Mrs Clennam’s demeanour towards all the rest of humanity and towards Little Dorrit, there was a fine gradation.
    Charles Dickens  --  Little Dorrit
  • I hesitate not to submit it to the decision of any candid and honest adversary of the proposed government, whether language can furnish epithets of too much asperity, for so shameless and so prostitute an attempt to impose on the citizens of America.
    Alexander Hamilton, James Madison, & John Jay  --  The Federalist Papers
  • May I inquire who has the honour to be the first?" asked Holmes with some asperity.
    Arthur Conan Doyle  --  The Hound of the Baskervilles
  • "How strange," continued the king, with some asperity; "the police think that they have disposed of the whole matter when they say, ’A murder has been committed,’ and especially so when they can add, ’And we are on the track of the guilty persons.’
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Count of Monte Cristo
  • "Not Harriet’s equal!" exclaimed Mr. Knightley loudly and warmly; and with calmer asperity, added, a few moments afterwards, "No, he is not her equal indeed, for he is as much her superior in sense as in situation.
    Jane Austen  --  Emma
  • You must have gone off your head," said Mrs. Peniston with asperity.
    Edith Wharton  --  The House of Mirth
  • ANNIE [WITH SOME ASPERITY]: Well, if there was a key in here, I wouldn’t be in here.
    William Gibson  --  The Miracle Worker
  • That’s what I said," replied Stillwell, with asperity.
    Zane Grey  --  The Light of Western Stars
  • "Your father may have been able to change countries," said Mrs. Munt with asperity, "and that may or may not be a good thing.
    E.M. Forster  --  Howards End
  • I then struck against the projecting asperities of a vertical gallery, a perfect well.
    Jules Verne  --  A Journey to the Center of the Earth
  • This encounter was so highly agreeable to Miss Fanny, and gave her so much to think of with triumph afterwards, that it softened her asperities exceedingly.
    Charles Dickens  --  Little Dorrit
  • "Just as well, since I’m apparently so bad at it," I observed with some asperity.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
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Associated words [difficulty]:   asperity [7] , aspersion [6]
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