toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Go to Book

forbearance
used in Gulliver's Travels

22 uses
(click/touch triangles for details)
Definition
refraining (holding back) from acting

or:

patience, tolerance, or self-control
  • I could not forbear shaking my head, and smiling a little at his ignorance.
    Part 4 — A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnms (34% in)
forbear = stop myself from (refrain from)
  • I have other complaints to make upon this vexatious occasion; but I forbear troubling myself or you any further.
    Introductory Sections (96% in)
  • I answered in a few words, but in the most submissive manner, lifting up my left hand, and both my eyes to the sun, as calling him for a witness; and being almost famished with hunger, having not eaten a morsel for some hours before I left the ship, I found the demands of nature so strong upon me, that I could not forbear showing my impatience (perhaps against the strict rules of decency) by putting my finger frequently to my mouth, to signify that I wanted food.
    Part 1 — A Voyage to Lilliput (8% in)
  • He mentioned it in a very artful manner at council, where I was told that some of the wisest appeared, at least by their silence, to be of my opinion; but others, who were my secret enemies, could not forbear some expressions which, by a side-wind, reflected on me.
    Part 1 — A Voyage to Lilliput (57% in)
  • But I was a little comforted by a message from his majesty, "that he would give orders to the grand justiciary for passing my pardon in form:" which, however, I could not obtain; and I was privately assured, "that the empress, conceiving the greatest abhorrence of what I had done, removed to the most distant side of the court, firmly resolved that those buildings should never be repaired for her use: and, in the presence of her chief confidents could not forbear vowing revenge."
    Part 1 — A Voyage to Lilliput (62% in)
  • In this terrible agitation of mind, I could not forbear thinking of Lilliput, whose inhabitants looked upon me as the greatest prodigy that ever appeared in the world; where I was able to draw an imperial fleet in my hand, and perform those other actions, which will be recorded for ever in the chronicles of that empire, while posterity shall hardly believe them, although attested by millions.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (6% in)
  • Scared and confounded as I was, I could not forbear going on with these reflections, when one of the reapers, approaching within ten yards of the ridge where I lay, made me apprehend that with the next step I should be squashed to death under his foot, or cut in two with his reaping-hook.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (7% in)
  • In the mean time I was not able to forbear groaning and shedding tears, and turning my head towards my sides; letting him know, as well as I could, how cruelly I was hurt by the pressure of his thumb and finger.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (8% in)
  • I confess this reflection was obvious enough; which, however, I could not forbear, lest the reader might think those vast creatures were actually deformed: for I must do them the justice to say, they are a comely race of people, and particularly the features of my master's countenance, although he was but a farmer, when I beheld him from the height of sixty feet, appeared very well proportioned.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (15% in)
  • This man, who was old and dim-sighted, put on his spectacles to behold me better; at which I could not forbear laughing very heartily, for his eyes appeared like the full moon shining into a chamber at two windows.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (20% in)
  • But I confess, that, after I had been a little too copious in talking of my own beloved country, of our trade and wars by sea and land, of our schisms in religion, and parties in the state; the prejudices of his education prevailed so far, that he could not forbear taking me up in his right hand, and stroking me gently with the other, after a hearty fit of laughing, asked me, "whether I was a whig or tory?"
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (36% in)
  • Neither, indeed, could I forbear smiling at myself, when the queen used to place me upon her hand towards a looking-glass, by which both our persons appeared before me in full view together; and there could be nothing more ridiculous than the comparison; so that I really began to imagine myself dwindled many degrees below my usual size.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (37% in)
  • I had much ado to defend myself against these detestable animals, and could not forbear starting when they came on my face.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (40% in)
  • Upon this point, I cannot forbear doing justice to the queen my mistress, and Glumdalclitch my nurse, whose persons were as sweet as those of any lady in England.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (52% in)
  • ...the monkey was seen by hundreds in the court, sitting upon the ridge of a building, holding me like a baby in one of his forepaws, and feeding me with the other, by cramming into my mouth some victuals he had squeezed out of the bag on one side of his chaps, and patting me when I would not eat; whereat many of the rabble below could not forbear laughing; neither do I think they justly ought to be blamed, for, without question, the sight was ridiculous enough to every body but myself.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (58% in)
  • And I may say with truth, that in the midst of my own misfortunes I could not forbear lamenting my poor nurse, the grief she would suffer for my loss, the displeasure of the queen, and the ruin of her fortune.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (88% in)
  • I answered, "it was very true; and I wondered how I could forbear, when I saw his dishes of the size of a silver three-pence, a leg of pork hardly a mouthful, a cup not so big as a nut-shell;" and so I went on, describing the rest of his household-stuff and provisions, after the same manner.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (97% in)
  • ...so good, although I had fasted all day;" and, continuing in his mirth, protested "he would have gladly given a hundred pounds, to have seen my closet in the eagle's bill, and afterwards in its fall from so great a height into the sea; which would certainly have been a most astonishing object, worthy to have the description of it transmitted to future ages:" and the comparison of Phaeton was so obvious, that he could not forbear applying it, although I did not much admire the conceit.
    Part 2 — A Voyage to Brobdingnag (98% in)
  • I could not forbear admiring at these odd appearances, both in town and country; and I made bold to desire my conductor, that he would be pleased to explain to me, what could be meant by so many busy heads, hands, and faces, both in the streets and the fields, because I did not discover any good effects they produced; but, on the contrary, I never knew a soil so unhappily cultivated, houses so ill contrived and so ruinous, or a people whose countenances and habit expressed so much...
    Part 3 — A Voyage to Laputa, Balnibarbi, .... (34% in)
  • I freely own myself to have been struck with inexpressible delight, upon hearing this account: and the person who gave it me happening to understand the Balnibarbian language, which I spoke very well, I could not forbear breaking out into expressions, perhaps a little too extravagant.
    Part 3 — A Voyage to Laputa, Balnibarbi, .... (83% in)
  • I expressed my uneasiness at his giving me so often the appellation of Yahoo, an odious animal, for which I had so utter a hatred and contempt: I begged he would forbear applying that word to me, and make the same order in his family and among his friends whom he suffered to see me.
    Part 4 — A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnms (22% in)
  • But I forbear descanting further, and rather leave the judicious reader to his own remarks and application.
    Part 4 — A Voyage to the Country of the Houyhnms (94% in)

There are no more uses of "forbearance" in Gulliver's Travels.

Typical Usage  (best examples)
Dictionary / pronunciation — Google®Dictionary list — Onelook.com®