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attain
used in Moby Dick

11 uses
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Definition
to gain or reach something with effort
  • The creature is some sixteen feet in length, while its horn averages five feet, though some exceed ten, and even attain to fifteen feet.
    Chapters 31-33 -- Queen Mab; Cetology; The Specksnyder (64% in)
  • Yet was there a sort of indefinite, half-attained, unimaginable sublimity about it that fairly froze you to it, till you involuntarily took an oath with yourself to find out what that marvellous painting meant.
    Chapters 1-3 -- Loomings; The Carpet-Bag; The Spouter-Inn (41% in)
  • But perhaps the mere crossing of Siberia in a sledge drawn by dogs as Ledyard did, or the taking a long solitary walk on an empty stomach, in the negro heart of Africa, which was the sum of poor Mungo's performances—this kind of travel, I say, may not be the very best mode of attaining a high social polish.
    Chapters 4-6 -- The Counter-Pane; Breakfast; The Street (63% in)
  • In the length he attains, and in his baleen, the Fin-back resembles the right whale, but is of a less portly girth, and a lighter colour, approaching to olive.
    Chapters 31-33 -- Queen Mab; Cetology; The Specksnyder (43% in)
  • And where Ahab's chances of accomplishing his object have hitherto been spoken of, allusion has only been made to whatever way-side, antecedent, extra prospects were his, ere a particular set time or place were attained, when all possibilities would become probabilities, and, as Ahab fondly thought, every possibility the next thing to a certainty.
    Chapters 43-45 -- Hark!; The Chart; The Affidavit (24% in)
  • Dr. Johnson never attained to that erudition; Noah Webster's ark does not hold it.
    Chapters 52-54 -- The Albatross; The Gam; The Town-Ho's Story (18% in)
  • Thus, most letters never reach their mark; and many are only received after attaining an age of two or three years or more.
    Chapters 70-72 -- The Sphynx; The Jeroboam's Story; The Monkey-Rope (59% in)
  • For now, since by many prolonged, repeated experiences, I have perceived that in all cases man must eventually lower, or at least shift, his conceit of attainable felicity; not placing it anywhere in the intellect or the fancy; but in the wife, the heart, the bed, the table, the saddle, the fireside, the country; now that I have perceived all this, I am ready to squeeze case eternally.
    Chapters 94-96 -- A Squeeze of the Hand; The Cassock; The Try-Works (15% in)
  • So, deprived of one leg, and the strange ship of course being altogether unsupplied with the kindly invention, Ahab now found himself abjectly reduced to a clumsy landsman again; hopelessly eyeing the uncertain changeful height he could hardly hope to attain.
    Chapters 100-102 -- The Pequod meets….; The Decanter; A Bower in the Arsacides (6% in)
  • Moreover: we are to consider, that from the presumed great longevity of whales, their probably attaining the age of a century and more, therefore at any one period of time, several distinct adult generations must be contemporary.
    Chapters 103-105 -- Measurement of The Whale's Skeleton; The Fossil Whale; Does the Whale Diminish (96% in)
  • And this tattooing had been the work of a departed prophet and seer of his island, who, by those hieroglyphic marks, had written out on his body a complete theory of the heavens and the earth, and a mystical treatise on the art of attaining truth; so that Queequeg in his own proper person was a riddle to unfold; a wondrous work in one volume; but whose mysteries not even himself could read, though his own live heart beat against them; and these mysteries were therefore destined in the...
    Chapters 109-111 -- Ahab and Starbuck in the Cabin; Queequeg in his Coffin; The Pacific (85% in)

There are no more uses of "attain" in Moby Dick.

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