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portentous
used in Moby Dick

8 uses
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Definition
very important; or indicating something important in the future

or:

acting overly important or serious
  • Such a portentous and mysterious monster roused all my curiosity.
    Chapters 1-3 -- Loomings; The Carpet-Bag; The Spouter-Inn (21% in)
  • But what most puzzled and confounded you was a long, limber, portentous, black mass of something hovering in the centre of the picture over three blue, dim, perpendicular lines floating in a nameless yeast.
    Chapters 1-3 -- Loomings; The Carpet-Bag; The Spouter-Inn (41% in)
  • But at last all these fancies yielded to that one portentous something in the picture's midst.
    Chapters 1-3 -- Loomings; The Carpet-Bag; The Spouter-Inn (42% in)
  • That Himmalehan, salt-sea Mastodon, clothed with such portentousness of unconscious power, that his very panics are more to be dreaded than his most fearless and malicious assaults!
    Chapters 13-15 -- Wheelbarrow; Nantucket; Chowder (59% in)
  • Such portentous appetites had Queequeg and Tashtego, that to fill out the vacancies made by the previous repast, often the pale Dough-Boy was fain to bring on a great baron of salt-junk, seemingly quarried out of the solid ox.
    Chapters 34-36 -- The Cabin-Table; The Mast-Head; The Qarter-Deck--Ahab and all (19% in)
  • But not yet have we solved the incantation of this whiteness, and learned why it appeals with such power to the soul; and more strange and far more portentous—why, as we have seen, it is at once the most meaning symbol of spiritual things, nay, the very veil of the Christian's Deity; and yet should be as it is, the intensifying agent in things the most appalling to mankind.
    Chapters 40-42 -- Midnight, Forecastle; Moby Dick; The Whiteness of the Whale (96% in)
  • Whatever superstitions the sperm whalemen in general have connected with the sight of this object, certain it is, that a glimpse of it being so very unusual, that circumstance has gone far to invest it with portentousness.
    Chapters 58-60 -- Brit; Squid; The Line (49% in)
  • But come out now, and look at this portentous lower jaw, which seems like the long narrow lid of an immense snuff-box, with the hinge at one end, instead of one side.
    Chapters 73-75 -- Stubb and Flask Kill a Right Whale; The Sperm Whale's Head, The Right Whale's Head (68% in)

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

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