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used in The Magic Mountain

41 uses
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most extreme as in final, best, worst, most important, or most fundamental
The exact meaning of ultimate depends upon its context. For example:
  • "the ultimate decision-maker" — the final
  • "the ultimate car" — the best
  • "the ultimate insult" — the worst
  • "the ultimate source" — original or most fundamental
  • "the ultimate sacrifice" — most extreme
  • Ultimately, to put it plainly, it does not exist, this desirability.
    7.8 - Highly Questionable (78% in)
  • And although this harmless vice added a jaunty touch to his appearance. the ultimate effect was much more that of the license of old age, the kind of carelessness that age either consciously and merrily permits itself or brings with it, cloaked in dignified oblivion; in any case, it was the only such carelessness in his grandfather's appearance that little Hans Castorp's sharp eye ever observed.
    2.1 - The Baptismal Bowl / Grandfather in His Two Forms (58% in)
  • ...hopes nor prospects, if they secretly supply him with evidence that things are in fact hopeless, without prospect or remedy, if the times respond with hollow silence to every conscious or subconscious question, however it may be posed, about the ultimate, unequivocal meaning of all exertions and deeds that are more than exclusively personal—then it is almost inevitable, particularly if the person involved is a more honest sort, that the situation will have a crippling effect, which,...
    2.2 - At the Tienappels' / Hans Castorp's Moral State (46% in)
  • But for the most part, his background, his urbane manners, and ultimately a pretty, if rather dispassionate talent for mathematics helped him move ahead; and after receiving his report card in his freshman year, he concluded he would finish school—primarily, truth to tell, because that allowed him to extend a familiar, provisional, indecisive state of affairs and to win time for reflection as to what Hans Castorp would most like to do, because he was not even close to deciding that,...
    2.2 - At the Tienappels' / Hans Castorp's Moral State (51% in)
  • As things stood, work had to be regarded as unconditionally the most estimable thing in the world—ultimately there was nothing one could esteem more, it was the principle by which one stood or fell, the absolute of the age, the answer, so to speak, to its own question.
    2.2 - At the Tienappels' / Hans Castorp's Moral State (67% in)
  • Ultimately, there is something odd about settling in somewhere new— about the perhaps laborious process of getting used to new surroundings and fitting in, a task we undertake almost for its own sake and with the definite intention of abandoning the place again as soon as it is accomplished, or shortly thereafter, and returning to our previous state.
    4.2 - Excursus on the Sense of Time (43% in)
  • Music is invaluable as the ultimate means for awakening our zeal, a power that draws the mind trained for its effects forward and upward.
    4.4 - Politically Suspect (72% in)
  • But if you wanted truly to enjoy life, Hans Castorp told himself, you really should keep the custom in mind and never forget how exhilarating and, ultimately, almost magical it was.
    4.6 - Analysis (79% in)
  • Some young man who had "given his heart," as they say, given it calmly, legitimately, and with a promising view to the future, to a healthy little goose down there in the flatlands— . such a young man might have found satisfaction and taken pleasure in such a heartfelt song, abandoning himself to his legitimate, promising, reasonable, and ultimately cheerful emotions.
    4.8 - Table Talk (93% in)
  • And both to do that and to save time (which people simply wasted up here), he had from the first been as conscientious as possible in doing his rest-cure duty—doing it, no doubt, in order to recuperate as soon as possible, but as Hans Castorp sometimes thought he could sense, doing it just a little for the sake of the cure itself, which ultimately was a sort of service like any other, since doing one's duty was doing one's duty.
    4.9 - Growing Anxiety / Two Grandfathers and a Twilight Boat Ride (31% in)
  • further human happiness, or in other words, finally to eradicate human suffering by combating it with practical social work; heedful, further, of the truth that this noble mission can be completed only wirh the help of social science, whose ultimate goal is the perfect state—the League for the Organization of Progress resolved in Barcelona to publish a multivolumed work, which is to bear the title The Sociology of Suffering and in which human sufferings of all classes and species...
    5.5 - Encyclopedia (64% in)
  • But there is one force, one principle that is the object of my highest affirmation, my highest and ultimate respect and love, and that force, that principle, is the mind.
    5.5 - Encyclopedia (88% in)
  • Consciousness of self was an inherent function of matter once it was organized as life, and if that function was enhanced it turned against the organism that bore it, strove to fathom and explain the very phenomenon that produced it, a hope-filled and hopeless striving of life to comprehend itself, as if nature were rummaging to find itself in itself—ultimately to no avail, since nature cannot be reduced to comprehension, nor in the end can life listen to itself.
    5.7 - Research (40% in)
  • But although it could not logically exist, ultimately there had to be something of that sort, because the notion of archebiosis—that is, the slow development of life from inorganic matter—could not be dismissed out of hand; and the gap in external nature between living and nonliving matter, which we vainly attempted to close, had to be filled or bridged somewhere deep within organic nature.
    5.7 - Research (82% in)
  • But confronted with the statement that atoms were "so small they were no longer small," one lost all sense of proportion, because "no longer small" was tantamount to "immense"; and that last step to the atom ultimately proved, without exaggeration, to be a fateful one.
    5.7 - Research (86% in)
  • It was not so much that the parasite deprived the surrounding tissue of its nourishment, but rather, in exchanging materials with its host cell, it formed organic compounds that proved amazingly toxic, indeed ultimately destructive, to the cells of the host organism.
    5.7 - Research (93% in)
  • Hans Castorp had sat through the incident with every outward sign of concerned horror, but ultimately—God help him!
    5.8 - Danse Macabre (39% in)
  • But ultimately, it proved to be a clandestine spring rain, and more and more, the longer it lasted, disclosed itself as such.
    6.1 - Changes (80% in)
  • There is something devilishly earnest about it all, something 'ascetic,' if you will—that was, I believe, the term you were kind enough to use just now—and one must always reckon that one will have to deal with death, just as, ultimately, the clergy must deal with it as well—with what else, really?
    6.2 - Someone Else (56% in)
  • Yes, this work, too, was absurd, but when one stopped and considered the matter, one could, in his opinion, call absurdity an intellectually honorable position, and so the absurd enmity toward nature in Gothic art was ultimately as honorable as the gesture of a Plotinus or a Voltaire, for it expressed the same emancipation from facts and givens, the same proud unwillingness to be enslaved, the same refusal to submit to dumb powers, that is, to nature.
    6.3 - The City of God and Evil Deliverance (35% in)
  • It is ultimately a cruel misunderstanding of youth to believe it will find its heart's desire in freedom.
    6.3 - The City of God and Evil Deliverance (53% in)
  • Its work is terror, that the world may be saved and the ultimate goal of redemption be achieved: the children of God living in a world without classes or laws.
    6.3 - The City of God and Evil Deliverance (67% in)
  • The experience of death must ultimately be the experience of life, or else it is only a wraith.
    6.6 - Operationes Spirituales (64% in)
  • It was as if veils, visible to no one before, were falling away one by one—and now the last, or so they thought, revealing the purest, most intense light, and then one more, the ultimate, and then, incredibly, the absolute last, releasing a glory shimmering with tears and a brilliance so lavish that a hollow sound of rapture had gone up from the audience, almost in protest and contradiction, it seemed, and even he, young Hans Castorp, had felt a sob well up within him.
    6.7 - Snow (73% in)
  • In both cases, we are dealing with a symbolism of last and ultimate things, with elements of orgiastic primal religion, with unbridled nocturnal sacrifices in honor of dying and ripening, of death, transformation, and resurrection.
    6.8 - A Good Soldier (34% in)
  • And when he did awaken and was asked how he felt, he would always answer, though somewhat indistinctly, that he felt fine and happy—although he had hardly any pulse left and ultimately did not even notice the prick of the hypodermic.
    6.8 - A Good Soldier (92% in)
  • Even drunken Bacchus, Hans Castorp thought, had propped himself on his exuberant companions without losing anything of his divinity, and ultimately it depended on who was drunk—a personality or a tinker.
    7.3 - Vingt et un (54% in)
  • The party gave itself over to its own blissful idleness; they exchanged disconnected small talk, scraps of elevated emotions, which in their primal state as ideas had promised ultimate beauty, but on the way to being spoken turned into fragmentary, slack-lipped gibberish, some of it indiscreet, some of it incomprehensible, all of it likely to have aroused angry embarrassment in any sober person who might have happened upon them, but accepted without complaint by the participants, who...
    7.3 - Vingt et un (81% in)
  • He spoke very forcefully and with unusual coherence about medicines and poisons, and Hans Castorp tilted his head and nodded as he listened, less concerned with the contents of what was said, which seemed very important to the Dutchman, than with quietly exploring the effects of the man's personality, which ultimately was as inexplicable as the effects of snake venoms.
    7.4 - Mynheer Peeperkorn (Continued) (11% in)
  • Yet she could not help noticing that the parvenu, being a cautious man like all parvenus, showed a certain aristocratic restraint toward her; his Spanish terrorism ultimately had little in common with her own door-slamming, vagabonding "humaneness."
    7.4 - Mynheer Peeperkorn (Continued) (19% in)
  • Could it be that Herr Settembrini had never been touched by that breath of humane irony with which the Church continually made concessions to the world, to the flesh, cleverly acquiescing in order to disguise the ultimate consequences of the ascetic principle and letting the influence of the Spirit establish order by not opposing nature all too sternly?
    7.4 - Mynheer Peeperkorn (Continued) (39% in)
  • The task was to trace this polygram freehand, without ever lifting your pencil from the paper; the ultimate goal, however, was to accomplish this blindfolded—which in the end, apart from a few minor blemishes that were easily disregarded, was managed only by Prosecutor Paravant, the primary booster of such intellectual crazes.
    7.6 - The Great Stupor (39% in)
  • WHAT NEW ACQUISITION of the Berghof was it, then, that rescued our friend of many years from his mania for solitaire and led him into the arms of another, nobler, if ultimately no less strange passion?
    7.7 - Fullness of Harmony (0% in)
  • It required no effort of imagination for Hans Castorp to share in the tenor's ecstasy and gratitude, but as he sat there with folded hands, staring at the little black louvers, from between whose slats this all burst forth, ultimately what he felt, understood, and relished was the victorious ideality of music, of art, of human emotions, their sublime and incontrovertible ability to gloss over the crude horrors of reality.
    7.7 - Fullness of Harmony (55% in)
  • And what were Hans Castorp's scruples, what questions did he ask himself when "playing king," about the ultimate legitimacy of his love for this enchanting song and its world?
    7.7 - Fullness of Harmony (90% in)
  • It was a miracle of the soul—the ultimate miracle, perhaps, in the eyes of unscrupulous beauty, who gave it her blessing; yet it was regarded with mistrust, and for valid reasons, by the responsible eye of someone "playing king," who affirmed life and loved its organic wholeness.
    7.7 - Fullness of Harmony (96% in)
  • But he who died for it was no longer really dying for this song and was a hero only because ultimately he died for something new—for the new word of love and for the future in his heart.
    7.7 - Fullness of Harmony (**% in)
  • It was a curiosity that bore within it a sense of its own ultimate hopelessness, that is, an awareness that there were regions to which his mind was forbidden the access it groped to find—giving rise to doubts whether it was simply idle, or perhaps sinful curiosity, which did not, however, prevent it from being what it was: curiosity.
    7.8 - Highly Questionable (14% in)
  • Ultimately they all knew this before they sat down, and in his chatterbox way, Hans Castorp had even blurted it out as they waited with trembling fingers.
    7.8 - Highly Questionable (26% in)
  • What blasphemous nonsense, ultimately, to measure the "distance" of some star or other from the earth in trillions of miles or even light-years and to imagine that by the ruse of numbers you had given the human spirit an insight into the nature of infinity and eternity—when infinity had absolutely nothing to do with size, nor eternity with duration and distances in time, had nothing in common with the notions of natural science, were the abrogation of what we meant by the word...
    7.9 - The Great Petulance (42% in)
  • He had behaved very humanely in his duel with crude Naphta; but more generally, whenever his enthusiasms blended humanity and politics for the ideal of civilization's ultimate victory and dominion, whenever the citizen's pike was consecrated on the altar of humanity, it became doubtful whether, on a more impersonal level, he remained of a mind to hold back his sword from shedding blood.
    7.10 - The Thunderbolt (42% in)

There are no more uses of "ultimate" in The Magic Mountain.

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