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plaintive


She asked in a plaintive voice.
  expressing sadness or pleading
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plaintive plaintively
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Samples:
  • She asked in a plaintive voice.
  • "I don’t want no trouble," he said plaintively.
    John Steinbeck  --  Of Mice and Men
  • She meant it for his ears alone but Hannah was close enough to him to hear every plaintive syllable.
    Jane Yolen  --  The Devils Arithmetic
  • "Jordan, what should I do?" Monique asked plaintively.
    Sharon M. Draper  --  Forged by Fire

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  • At the other side door his sister came plaintively: "Gregor? Aren’t you well? Do you need anything?"
    Franz Kafka  --  Metamorphosis
  • Winnie’s mother and grandmother sat plaintive all afternoon in the parlor ...  their hair unsettled and their knees loose.
    Natalie Babbitt  --  Tuck Everlasting
  • ...whenever she looked hard at any shelf, to make out exactly what it had on it, that particular shelf was always quite empty: though the others round it were crowded as full as they could hold.

    ’Things flow about so here!’ she said at last in a plaintive tone,
    Lewis Carroll  --  Through the Looking-Glass
  • When I sank into a deep lunge, the tiny nun would study me, plaintively wondering, "What am I doing wrong?"
    Piper Kerman  --  Orange Is the New Black
  • For the next hour Daisy Mae cried plaintively into the darkling subarctic sides, but without raising a whisper of a reply.
    Farley Mowat  --  Never Cry Wolf
  • I asked, disgusted by how plaintive my voice sounded.
    Patrick Rothfuss  --  The Name of the Wind

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  • "Oh, Melody, if only I could make your hurt go away," she says plaintively.
    Sharon M. Draper  --  Out of My Mind
  • I loved his howl, which I could both hear and feel: long and plaintive, woebegone and heartsore, filled with yearning for what used to be and for what would never come again.
    Gail Carson Levine  --  Ella Enchanted
  • "He’ll die here; he has no mummy or daddy," I said plaintively.
    Louise Rennison  --  Angus, Thongs and Full-Frontal Snogging
  • "My, but I wish there were no wind," Mrs Whatsit said plaintively.
    Madeleine L’Engle  --  A Wrinkle in Time
  • His voice was plaintive, immensely evocative, and profoundly sad.
    Pat Conroy  --  The Water is Wide
  • By contrast the voice of the female seemed plaintive, defensive, growing shrill at moments as if in fright but generally submissive with an undertone of pleading.
    William Styron  --  Sophie’s Choice
  • Elaine, which I once found too plaintive.
    Margaret Atwood  --  Cat’s Eye
  • Buford made a plaintive squeal, then clattered into the corner in a sulk.
    Rick Riordan  --  The Blood of Olympus
  • There was one I noticed particularly, about the man out late at night upon a fairy hill, who heard the sound of a woman singing "sad and plaintive" from the very rocks of the hill.
    Diana Gabaldon  --  Outlander
  • ’I wonder if the Railway misses us,’ she said, plaintively.
    Edith Nesbit  --  The Railway Children
  • He lifted one arm toward Louie, a plaintive expression on his face.
    Laura Hillenbrand  --  Unbroken
  • Eventually, the boys began to look at her with plaintive expressions: they were confused, in pain.
    Warren St. John  --  Outcasts United
  • It was almost plaintive.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Lost Souls
  • "I want to go home, Peeta," I say plaintively, like a small child.
    Suzanne Collins  --  The Hunger Games
  • The sledge slid along in the midst of a plaintively intense melody.
    Jules Verne  --  Around the World in 80 Days
  • It was all I had, just a plaintive cry to a God Who was with me, but Whose ways were becoming unclear to me.
    Marcus Luttrell  --  Lone Survivor
  • "But what about my house …?" he asked plaintively.
    Douglas Adams  --  The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy
  • He took photographs of a tarantula, plaintive sunsets, windswept dunes, the long curve of empty coastline.
    Jon Krakauer  --  Into the Wild
  • It was sad to hear their plaintive voices in that candle-lit room.
    Rudolfo Anaya  --  Bless Me, Ultima
  • His name, or rather a plaintive voice which essayed to pronounce his name, reached him.
    Alexandre Dumas  --  The Count of Monte Cristo
  • She was laughing, her head tilted back, and then I heard Holiday howling plaintively, for I was back where we had both once lived.
    Alice Sebold  --  The Lovely Bones
  • And he says to me, I swear it, it’s true, he actually says tome… This endless conversation, the tone plaintive but oddly cheerful, flew around and around in a circle.
    Khaled Hosseini  --  A Thousand Splendid Suns
  • But there was something plaintive about her request that made it impossible to turn her down.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  Dear John
  • ’What correspondence?’ asked the chaplain plaintively in rising exasperation.
    Joseph Heller  --  Catch-22
  • He passed his hand across his eyes, he sighed, his voice became plaintive.
    Aldous Huxley  --  Brave New World
  • The elderly American lady’s voice rose shrill and plaintive.
    Agatha Christie  --  Murder On The Orient Express
  • The cage bars slid down, and the goat remained tethered in the center of the field, bleating plaintively.
    Michael Crichton  --  Jurassic Park
  • She stroked his back, and Zeus whined plaintively before licking at her hands.
    Nicholas Sparks  --  The Lucky One
  • He could hear the tattered man bleating plaintively.
    Stephen Crane  --  The Red Badge of Courage
  • The snow had ceased, and a flash of watery sunlight exposed the house on the slope above us in all its plaintive ugliness.
    Edith Wharton  --  Ethan Frome
  • Then the dog began to moan in old Salamano’s room, and through the sleep-bound house the little plaintive sound rose slowly, like a flower growing out of the silence and the darkness.
    Albert Camus  --  The Stranger
  • Simon sounded plaintive.
    Cassandra Clare  --  City of Fallen Angels
  • But where And then a ship’s horn, plaintive and lost, sounded in the distance.
    Micheal Scott  --  The Alchemyst
  • And as the encamisados came along they muttered to themselves in a low plaintive tone.
    Miguel de Cervantes  --  Don Quixote
  • When this recital of events was ended, his voice once more changed, and became plaintive and even musical, in its low guttural sounds.
    James Fenimore Cooper  --  The Last of the Mohicans
  • Even the poor baby at Hester’s bosom was affected by the same influence, for it directed its hitherto vacant gaze towards Mr. Dimmesdale, and held up its little arms with a half-pleased, half-plaintive murmur.
    Nathaniel Hawthorne  --  The Scarlet Letter
  • And before Rostov had time to make out what the black thing was that had suddenly appeared in the fog, there was a flash, followed by a report, and a bullet whizzing high up in the mist with a plaintive sound passed out of hearing.
    Leo Tolstoy  --  War and Peace
  • He could hear in his mind’s ear the blood-stirring and intricate rhythms of the ekwe and the udu and the ogene, and he could hear his own flute weaving in and out of them, decorating them with a colourful and plaintive tune.
    Chinua Achebe  --  Things Fall Apart
  • A plaintive, beseeching voice caught me in the spine: "Eliezer… my son … bring me … a drop of coffee…."
    Elie Wiesel  --  Night
  • Marilla herself, upon her return to the house, was agreeably surprised to hear a plaintive voice calling, "Marilla" over the banisters.
    Lucy Maud Montgomery  --  Anne Of Green Gables
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Associated words [difficulty]:   plaintive [2]
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Most commonly used in these subjects:   Classic Literature, Human Behavior, Nature & Ecology
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