Dictionary of Love
WELCOME



Read or Search the Dictionary

DICTIONARY: TEXT
DICTIONARY: SEARCH



Read about the Dictionary:

PUBLICATION HISTORY
JOHN CLELAND
RALPH GRIFFITHS
J. F. DU RADIER



Select Dictionary Entries by
Random Phrases:

ILLUSTRATIONS

Part of Speech:

VERB
NOUN
ADJECTIVE

Courtship Stage:

STARTING
NEGOTIATING
OUTCOME
ANY

Implied Readers:

WOMEN
MEN
BOTH



Read about the Project:

PROJECT HISTORY
EDITING IN XML
LINGUISTIC ANALYSIS
LITERARY EXAMPLES
BIBLIOGRAPHY



Dictionary of Love: Illustrations
The Dictionary of Love
Select by Phrases used to illustrate the Dictionary

How dear is my absence from you going to cost me? How tedious will the hours seem?

See: Absence

Love levels every thing.

See: Level

To whom do you think you are addressing yourself?

“Let us see whether you are a novice or not? Whether you have duly taken your degrees of assurance? or whether you are not in your horn-book of gallantry?”

You address yourself to the wrong person, I assure you.

To whom do you think you are addressing yourself?

See: Address

How barbarous you are!

“You surprize me; I did not expect such a long resistance: my pride begins to murmur at it.”

See: Barbarous

Who knows but he may at last marry me?

“I am adored, says she to herself; I am adorable. So much pains, so many rich presents, are sure proofs of my lover's sincerity: then he is so fine a gentleman: would he deceive me? Why should I despair of my fortune? Why should not I grace a coronet as well as another? Have I less charms than lady such an one, who jumped out of the street into a title and a coach?”

See: Who

Distrust absolves faith.

See: Curiosity

No! it is impossible to resist such attractions

“If all the soft trash I have expended upon you is not yet able to touch you, I have a reserve-lunge, which you will, with all your cunning, be hardly able to parry; and this is it:

See: Attractions

I will never change,

“I am in the disposition to pass my time agreeably, no matter at whose expence: and this disposition I find so convenient I shall hardly every change it.”

See: Change

My heart can never break your chains,

“I shall always love you.”

I cannot break my chains,

“I am not such a fool as to break my bank.”

See: Chains

You possess my heart. My heart feels for you, &c.

See: Heart

“I leave to your needy younger brothers and officers, who live upon their commissions, the drudgery of courtship: I love an easy, ready pleasure. None of the vulgarisms of sighs, intreaties, and the like nonsense for me. See, will this suit you?”

See: Money

“Madam, I see no-body so agreeable as you,”

“Since I have gone so far as to tell you that I loved you, I must look out for some reason to assign for it: Now, the quality of agreeable being one of those ideas of caprice purely arbitrary, a je-ne-sçai-quoi, that admits of no dangerous definition, it may serve till I have gathered impudence enough, or you are grown silly enough, for me to tell you you are handsome.”

See: Agreeable

“I have, as to my beauty, a clear conscience: it is all honestly my own: and I am the more sure of doing execution with it, for its not having the air of murder propense.”

See: Toilette

“If I was to form to you too hight an image of the favour I am solliciting, you would think twice before you granted it me.”

See: Favours

I burn for you

See: Burn

I love you

Cannot my sighs move you to pity me?

See: Sighs

Are you mad?

See: Mad

BUT if this should be known. BUT if you should be unconstant.

See: But

Can you deny yourself the pleasure there is in the union of two hearts?

“I am drawing you the luscious picture of Love, such as it was in times of yore, that I may disguise to you the present state of it, which might not serve my purposes so well.”

See: Union

Can you disbelieve my tears?

“Tears are the eloquence of our sex; they move even the most insensible; can you then be more obdurate than others?”

“Since words alone will not do, perhaps tears may take you by the weak side of compassion. No actor could play his part better than I am now doing.”

See: Tears

I desire nothing but to please you

At least tell me that I do not displease you

“Who tells you that I am not pleased with you?”

See: Please

Do you reckon my assiduities for nothing?

See: Assiduities

You drive me to despair

“things do not go on so smooth as I could wish; since I must despair of obtaining any thing to day, I must adjourn my operations to a better season; and, in the mean time, go and amuse my time elsewhere as agreeably as I may.”

See: Despair

Excuse my boldness

“I am sounding the channel, to see how you will take small liberties: if you excuse this, I shall have room, I hope, to proceed to greater.”

See: Boldness

“I am not the dupe of these compliments: I hate praise.”

See: Praise

He is a giddy young fellow

See: Giddy

He is nothing but a Tattle

See: Tattle

How indifferent you are?

“I wonder you can have so little attention to my merit.”

See: Indifferent

How long will you make me languish for a confession that you love me?

“I have, methinks, gone through all the forms which usually bring matters to a conclusion: I have fooled away time enough about you: I being to be tired, and want to be at a point.”

“I see my happiness hangs but on a thread of modesty, ready to snap: you are reduced; and all I want of you is to tell me so, that we may lose no more time.”

See: Confession

How ugly you are!

See: Ugly

How winning you are!

How weak am I!

See: Winning

I Sacrifice to you my heart, my liberty, &c.

“I had a passion for Lucinda: I had inspired her with an equal one for me; and she will be desperately vexed at finding I sacrifice her to you.”

“I know there is nothing of which you women are fonder, than being enriched with the spoils of another.”

You reproach me with this conquest? Well; I sacrifice it to you: Can you desire more?

“ I will use you one day just as I use her at present. Your vanity shuts your eyes to this certain consequence: but when a sad experience shall make you open them, you will have no reason to complain. Had not my conduct given you sufficient warning?”

See: Sacrifice

I am no longer master of myself: I give way to my transports

“Whatever impertinent caution your reason may suggest to you, I would have you rather believe my madness, &c.”

See: Transports

I am sick with Love. Sure you cannot refuse to cure the pains you cause.

See: Sick

I am your slave; you use your slave too cruelly;

“The more power I can make you believe you have over me, the more I shall gain over you.”

See: Slave

I esteem you.

“You distress me: I do not know how to come off with you: To tell you plainly, that I hate you, would be too much against all the laws of politeness.”

See: Esteem

I hope you will cure the wounds you have made;

“You have raised desires which I expect you have too much good-nature to disappoint, and that you will restore me to the quiet you have destroyed, tho' it should be at the expence of your own.”

See: Cure

I love you to distraction

See: Distraction

I love you with delicacy.

“I have too much delicacy to draw you headlong into an engagement, till things are better settled: it would be making you unhappy.”

See: Delicacy

I offer you a heart penetrated with the tenderest passion

I offer you my purse

See: Offer

I swear, I protest to you that I will for ever be constant;

“So long as you afford me lasting pleasure, so long as you can amuse me agreeably, and preserve your power to charm me; for otherwise the implicit contract is, in fact, void.”

See: Swear

I wish I could love you

I wish I could hate you

See: Wish

To what purpose all this stuff, when they are alone?

See: Conversation

“As knowledge is but sorrow's spy, it might be better not to know.”

See: Know

You know my tenderness

“I have too much vanity, interest, and self-love, not to keep you on the hooks with this bait. I should be sorry to lose an admirer, whom a profession of tenderness may keep on my lift.”

See: Tenderness

Goatly loves the innocent Sylvia.

I love you

“I am a younger born, unfortunately born under a star that gave me the soul of a prince, and the fortune of a beggar. No man had ever a stronger passion for pleasures and expence than I have: but I am ruined at play; I am over head and ears in debt. As you have then a fortune that may stop all my leaks, and set me on float, let us supply one another's wants.”

See: Love

See at your feet your poor adorer dies

See: Adorer

I am under a mortal anxiety

See: Anxiety

God never made a coxcomb worth a groat.

See: Coxcomb

if she never was lucky enough to be asked the question

See: Old Maid

“I look on it as my duty to obey you: your will is my law.”

“I treat you as a sovereign in order to make you my slave. I fob you with appearances, that I may obtain realities.”

See: Obey

You make me lose my reason

“Since it is a maxim in love, that no one is a thorough lover who has any share of reason, I renounce at least the appearances of it, in hopes to bring you to renounce the reality.”

See: Reason

He is a happy rogue

“I am sure he has been a rogue to me”

“I have been a fool to myself.”

See: Rogue

Pray, let me alone, I hate you mortally

“Your boldness is far from displeasing me; you may even venture it as far as it will go.”

Can you hate me then?

“I want to give myself the pleasure of hearing an assurance to the contrary, or of perplexing you, — or of seeing how prettily you can turn a declaration of love.”

I know you hate me

“I defy you, for the soul of you, to be otherwise than violently in love with such a pretty fellow as I am.”

See: Hate

Are you not ashamed of yourself?

See: Shame

I feel the tenderest alarms

“You have doubtless heard it said, that love is never without anxious desire, founded upon an old-fashioned maxim, that this passion is a state of torment and disquietude, and very apt to take alarms at a shadow: you would then dislike too tranquil a lover; and since you must have find words to please you, what can be finer than these: I feel the tenderest alarms.”

See: Alarms

“Either nature is imperfect in itself, by giving us inclinations that the laws condemn, or the laws are justly accusable of too great severity, in condemning inclinations given us by nature.”

“Since you have scruples, my game is to remove them. Reason may give itself what airs it pleases; but if you love me, nature will do the rest of my work for me.”

See: Nature

It is not your beauty alone that charms me, but the divine qualities of your understanding and heart: it is your soul alone with which mine is enraptured.

“I find you are one of the sentimental ladies, forsooth! and on that foot you shall not want for some metaphysical jargon to dazzle and dumbfound you.”

See: Qualities

“Oh! Athenians, all this is to talked of, and to give your tongues employment.”

See: Indiscretion

Leave me; pray leave me

See: Leave

I court such an one: I visit her: she is an amusement for me.

See: Amusement

I have no designs on you but what are honourable

“Since you exact so much, and I must give you hopes of marriage, this may serve to quiet your scruples, till this lure may give me moments of advantage.”

See: Marry

Nothing can equal my torments, &c.

“There is in women a perversity, that makes them delight in thinking their lovers suffer a great deal of pain for them; and to tell them so, is taking them by their weak side: as to the reality, that is out of the question: but, as they are fond of such expressions, why not play them upon them? they deserve it.”

See: Torments

Think of what your love exposes me to: Consider what may be said of us

See: Reputation

Pray make a return to my love

Can one love without the hopes of a return?

See: Return

Receive this pledge of my tenderness.

“If you should have sense enough to see my drift; if you should be on your guard against my designs, here is something to keep off those reflexions: here is a quieting draught, for the watchful dragon of your virtue.”

See: Pledge

Why will you not make me happy?

“Why are you prudent enough not to make yourself unhappy, by believing me?”

How happy am I, now you tell me you love me?

“You rid me of a great deal of plague I have had to bring you to my point: I have no further occasion for all the drudgery of courtship; you have happily relieved me: and I am henceforward to be on the free and easy footing with you.”

See: Happy

“The Graces accompany you every where.”

“Here she comes, with all her airs and graces.”

See: Graces

The object of my tenderness

See: Object

Me! do anything against my duty?

See: Duty

At least, madam, grant me…

“There is no coming to my point but by degrees. Neglecting one step may set one back twenty: this slight favour I now sue for will bring on others. My play is to disguise the danger. I petition now, that I may get into a condition of giving laws hereafter.”

See: Grant

I dread the marriage-fetters: I love my liberty

I do not like these liberties

“You forget yourself: when we are in private, as much of them as you please: but in public pray be more reserved.”

See: Liberty

I admire the calm of a disengaged heart,

“Custom has absolutely forbid our sex to complain of having no lovers: it is confessing too many disagreeable things, and almost equal to owning that one has no merit. What is to be done then? dissemble.”

See: Calm

What do you complain of?

“I have granted you all that decency would allow me to grant you: it is your business to take the rest.”

See: Plaintive

a stroke sympathy that attaches me to you; something I cannot define, and feel nevertheless.

“If I was to tell you the true reasons of my addressing you, they would but little affect you: perhaps too they would make against me. My best way is to have recourse to reason of sympathy, which are the more excellent, as they are susceptible of no explanation, and may be ranked in the class of the unaccountables, the nonsense of which is not the worst rhetoric in Love.”

See: Sympathy

“It is better, says he, to sin through too much vivacity, than too much timidity: Fortune is a woman, and requires a brisk attack. She grants victory oftener to rash, impetuous characters, than to the cold and circumspect. Hence it is, that this goddess, like women, (N.B. His whole comparison turns upon this principle) is more favourable to the young, because they have more fire, and daring, than those of a more advanced age.”

“I could not help it. I was surprized.”

See: Brisk

I will love you eternally: My flame will be eternal.

“My passion will last as long as it will last.”

It is an eternity since I saw you,

“I have not seen you these two days:”

“My love will be eternal,”

“It will last two days.”

See: Eternal

There is nothing left for it but your running away with me.

“Hitherto we have only committed the common follies of love; but now, let us consummate them by a stroke of êclat. I have so perfect a regard for you, that I make use of all the advantage your love gives me over you, to persuade you to take refuge in my arms, from tyrannical parents, whose darling you are, whose life it is necessary to my happiness you should imbitter [sic] for ever: (or perhaps) from a husband who adores you, who is so cruel to you as to want to have you all to himself; and whom you are going to overwhelm with shame and sorrow, whilst my passion lasts; and it will last as long — as it can: I will stand you in the stead of all you lose for my sake: when I am heartily tired of you, I shall arm myself with firmness enough to part with you: you may cry, complain, storm, all will be in vain: then you may go back to your family; that is to say, if it is silly and fond enough to receive you: if not, there are the ever open arms of the town for you.”

See: Run

Oh! how cruel you are ! How unjust!

“Why do not you believe me? I have done every thing toward persuading you, that a gentle lover should: I have talked: I have sighed: I have been for this hour heaping lies upon lies, till I am at the end of my part.”

See: Exclaims

Is there no seeing you for a minute?

“Am I never to obtain one of those delicious quarters of an hour in which love gets uppermost, when reason leave the field to it, and virtue takes a nap? Shall I never hear the critical minute strike?”

See: Critical

I love: love did I say? I adore you!

“The secret of pleasing consists in flattering your self-love, at the expence of your understanding. I am straining hard to persuade you, that you have distracted my brain; not that it is so in the least; but, whilst I laugh at you in my sleeve, for your swallowing this stuff, I may gain wherewith to laugh at you in good earnest.”

See: Adore

No! I will never abuse your goodness.

I ever abuse your goodness! Heavens forbid!

I am too good-natured—I own

I abuse your good-nature; but, with so much love as I have, ’tis impossible to have discretion.

See: Abuse

No! madam; never will I forsake you. May heaven forsake me, if I do.

“If you have always the same charms in my eyes: If I see no other beauty that pleases me better;”

Well, cruel, since you drive me from you, since you force me to forsake you, it must be so.

“The fear of losing a lover may make you give me some encouragement: if I leave you, it will diminish your train: think of that.”

Faithless wretch! And can you forsake me then?

“Am I then to have the pain of seeing another possess what I thought my own? What will the world say? Why, that I had not charms enough to fix Silvio, who adores Lucinda: they are every day together: he handed her yesterday into the side-box: they danced together at the last ball. Gods! this is not to be borne.”

See: Forsake

Your cruelty will make me die

“I have employ'd flames, darts, despair, &c. to persuade you: and now have nothing left by death to pin the basket.”

A living death I die.

Do you wish to see me die?

“Do you wish that the lover in should die to you? I am weary of spending so much nonsense, and advancing so little: there are other women in the world. If you do not capitulate soon, I must raise the siege.”

See: Death

Do you want to ruin me?

See: Ruin

I am discreet.

“It is not my game that you should have any doubts of my discretion; this is then to remove that obstruction, as far as words may do it; reserving, however, to myself the relief of giving broad hints of the favours you shall have granted me; and I will recommend such particular secrecy to some of my friends, over a bottle, that you will not have much to fear upon that head.”

See: Discreet

You do me great unjustice

“It is true, I saunter, I flutter from beauty to beauty; but why should you find fault with me? it is the way of the world. Would you have me set up for a reformer of it? Pleasure is my property; and I have a right to take my own wherever I find it.”

See: Unjustice

Truce, I beg you, good Sir, with your compliments.

“I am insatiable upon the article of compliments; the way to make you continue them is to plead modesty, which will furnish you a new topic upon which to praise me.”

See: Truce

I have too much respect for you

“I know better things than to hazard freedoms, prematurely, before the way is cleared for them.”

“I have too much bashfulness.”

“I despise you too much to tell you that I love you.”

See: Respect

I am engaged

See: Engagement

What is a Husband?

See: Husband

I do not like this jesting

“Every thing declares in your favour; even this little coyness is but a signal of your victory.”

“This is no time for jesting: I should like better you was in earnest.”

See: Jest

How can you like a person of my age?

“I am too old; I know it; and am persuaded I have not the charms to captivate a young man.”

“If I have not all the bloom of youth, neither have I its failings: mellow fruit is not so ill-tasted.”

“At your age! madam; at your age! you are but too charming! Where, without flattery, shall one see a nobler air, a fresher complexion; and then so much fine sense!”

See Mrs. Fillamott, in her rose-coloured gown, or pink ribbons; can it become one of her age to lay schemes for smiting?

See: Age

How can a poor creature help her fate?

See: Fate

You are an unconstant.

“My self-love is more flattered by imputing to you a fault, of which I am myself the cause, than if I was to tell myself that I have not charms enough to fix you.”

See: Unconstant

You deceive me

“I know you deceive me”

You say you love me, but I do not know how to trust you; I am afraid you deceive me.

“I believe you but too much: but it is the custom, in such cases, to make objections: a conquest would appear too easy without them: let me have then some ardent protestations: turn my head: deceive me. I desire no better. I do not want to examine too scrupulously into the credit due to you: I wish your sincerity too much to plague myself with the doubt of it: all I want is the excuse of your vows and assurances, if but for form-sake.”

“Yes, I do deceive you.”

See: Deceive

“You have a perfect empire over me”

“I expect an absolute empire over my lover”

“If he would please me, he must commit the most glaring follies; sacrifice to me, honour, reason, reputation, fortune.”

See: Empire