The Time Machine — EN

IV
Time Travelling

“I told some of you last Thurs­day of the prin­ci­ples of the Time Machine, and showed you the actu­al thing itself, incom­plete in the work­shop. There it is now, a lit­tle trav­el-worn, tru­ly; and one of the ivory bars is cracked, and a brass rail bent; but the rest of it’s sound enough. I expect­ed to fin­ish it on Fri­day, but on Fri­day, when the putting togeth­er was near­ly done, I found that one of the nick­el bars was exact­ly one inch too short, and this I had to get remade; so that the thing was not com­plete until this morn­ing. It was at ten o’clock today that the first of all Time Machines began its career. I gave it a last tap, tried all the screws again, put one more drop of oil on the quartz rod, and sat myself in the sad­dle. I sup­pose a sui­cide who holds a pis­tol to his skull feels much the same won­der at what will come next as I felt then. I took the start­ing lever in one hand and the stop­ping one in the oth­er, pressed the first, and almost imme­di­ate­ly the sec­ond. I seemed to reel; I felt a night­mare sen­sa­tion of falling; and, look­ing round, I saw the lab­o­ra­to­ry exact­ly as before. Had any­thing hap­pened? For a moment I sus­pect­ed that my intel­lect had tricked me. Then I not­ed the clock. A moment before, as it seemed, it had stood at a minute or so past ten; now it was near­ly half-past three!

“I drew a breath, set my teeth, gripped the start­ing lever with both hands, and went off with a thud. The lab­o­ra­to­ry got hazy and went dark. Mrs. Watch­ett came in and walked, appar­ent­ly with­out see­ing me, towards the gar­den door. I sup­pose it took her a minute or so to tra­verse the place, but to me she seemed to shoot across the room like a rock­et. I pressed the lever over to its extreme posi­tion. The night came like the turn­ing out of a lamp, and in anoth­er moment came tomor­row. The lab­o­ra­to­ry grew faint and hazy, then fainter and ever fainter. Tomor­row night came black, then day again, night again, day again, faster and faster still. An eddy­ing mur­mur filled my ears, and a strange, dumb con­fused­ness descend­ed on my mind.

“I am afraid I can­not con­vey the pecu­liar sen­sa­tions of time trav­el­ling. They are exces­sive­ly unpleas­ant. There is a feel­ing exact­ly like that one has upon a switch­back – of a help­less head­long motion! I felt the same hor­ri­ble antic­i­pa­tion, too, of an immi­nent smash. As I put on pace, night fol­lowed day like the flap­ping of a black wing. The dim sug­ges­tion of the lab­o­ra­to­ry seemed present­ly to fall away from me, and I saw the sun hop­ping swift­ly across the sky, leap­ing it every minute, and every minute mark­ing a day. I sup­posed the lab­o­ra­to­ry had been destroyed and I had come into the open air. I had a dim impres­sion of scaf­fold­ing, but I was already going too fast to be con­scious of any mov­ing things. The slow­est snail that ever crawled dashed by too fast for me. The twin­kling suc­ces­sion of dark­ness and light was exces­sive­ly painful to the eye. Then, in the inter­mit­tent dark­ness­es, I saw the moon spin­ning swift­ly through her quar­ters from new to full, and had a faint glimpse of the cir­cling stars. Present­ly, as I went on, still gain­ing veloc­i­ty, the pal­pi­ta­tion of night and day merged into one con­tin­u­ous grey­ness; the sky took on a won­der­ful deep­ness of blue, a splen­did lumi­nous col­or like that of ear­ly twi­light; the jerk­ing sun became a streak of fire, a bril­liant arch, in space; the moon a fainter fluc­tu­at­ing band; and I could see noth­ing of the stars, save now and then a brighter cir­cle flick­er­ing in the blue.

“The land­scape was misty and vague. I was still on the hill-side upon which this house now stands, and the shoul­der rose above me grey and dim. I saw trees grow­ing and chang­ing like puffs of vapour, now brown, now green; they grew, spread, shiv­ered, and passed away. I saw huge build­ings rise up faint and fair, and pass like dreams. The whole sur­face of the earth seemed changed – melt­ing and flow­ing under my eyes. The lit­tle hands upon the dials that reg­is­tered my speed raced round faster and faster. Present­ly I not­ed that the sun belt swayed up and down, from sol­stice to sol­stice, in a minute or less, and that con­se­quent­ly my pace was over a year a minute; and minute by minute the white snow flashed across the world, and van­ished, and was fol­lowed by the bright, brief green of spring.

“The unpleas­ant sen­sa­tions of the start were less poignant now. They merged at last into a kind of hys­ter­i­cal exhil­a­ra­tion.

I remarked indeed a clum­sy sway­ing of the machine, for which I was unable to account. But my mind was too con­fused to attend to it, so with a kind of mad­ness grow­ing upon me, I flung myself into futu­ri­ty. At first I scarce thought of stop­ping, scarce thought of any­thing but these new sen­sa­tions. But present­ly a fresh series of impres­sions grew up in my mind – a ser­tain curios­i­ty and there­with a cer­tain dread – until at last they took com­plete pos­ses­sion of me. What strange devel­op­ments of human­i­ty, what won­der­ful advances upon our rudi­men­ta­ry civ­i­liza­tion, I thought, might not appear when I came to look near­ly into the dim elu­sive world that raced and fluc­tu­at­ed before my eyes! I saw great and splen­did archi­tec­ture ris­ing about me, more mas­sive than any build­ings of our own time, and yet, as it seemed, built of glim­mer and mist. I saw a rich­er green flow up the hill-side, and remain there, with­out any win­try inter­mis­sion. Even through the veil of my con­fu­sion the earth seemed very fair. And so my mind came round to the busi­ness of stop­ping, “The pecu­liar risk lay in the pos­si­bil­i­ty of my find­ing some sub­stance in the space which I, or the machine, occu­pied. So long as I trav­elled at a high veloc­i­ty through time, this scarce­ly mat­tered; I was, so to speak, atten­u­at­ed – was slip­ping like a vapour through the inter­stices of inter­ven­ing sub­stances!

But to come to a stop involved the jam­ming of myself, mol­e­cule by mol­e­cule, into what­ev­er lay in my way; meant bring­ing my atoms into such inti­mate con­tact with those of the obsta­cle that a pro­found chem­i­cal reac­tion – pos­si­bly a far-reach­ing explo­sion – would result, and blow myself and my appa­ra­tus out of all pos­si­ble dimen­sions – into the Unknown. This pos­si­bil­i­ty had occurred to me again and again while I was mak­ing the machine; but then I had cheer­ful­ly accept­ed it as an unavoid­able risk – one of the risks a man has got to take! Now the risk was inevitable, I no longer saw it in the same cheer­ful light. The fact is that insen­si­bly, the absolute strange­ness of every­thing, the sick­ly jar­ring and sway­ing of the machine, above all, the feel­ing of pro­longed falling, had absolute­ly upset my nerve. I told myself that I could nev­er stop, and with a gust of petu­lance I resolved to stop forth­with. Like an impa­tient fool, I lugged over the lever, and incon­ti­nent­ly the thing went reel­ing over, and I was flung head­long through the air.

“There was the sound of a clap of thun­der in my ears. I may have been stunned for a moment. A piti­less hail was hiss­ing round me, and I was sit­ting on soft turf in front of the over­set machine. Every­thing still seemed grey, but present­ly I remarked that the con­fu­sion in my ears was gone. I looked round me. I was on what seemed to be a lit­tle lawn in a gar­den, sur­round­ed by rhodo­den­dron bush­es, and I noticed that their mauve and pur­ple blos­soms were drop­ping in a show­er under the beat­ing of the hail-stones. The rebound­ing, danc­ing hail hung in a cloud over the machine, and drove along the ground like smoke. In a moment I was wet to the skin. ‘Fine hos­pi­tal­i­ty,’ said I, ‘to a man who has trav­elled years to see you.’

“Present­ly I thought what a fool I was to get wet. I stood up and looked round me. A colos­sal fig­ure, carved appar­ent­ly in some white stone, loomed indis­tinct­ly beyond the rhodo­den­drons through the hazy down­pour. But all else of the world was invis­i­ble.

“My sen­sa­tions would be hard to describe. As the columns of hail grew thin­ner, I saw the white fig­ure more dis­tinct­ly. It was very large, for a sil­ver birch-tree touched its shoul­der. It was of white mar­ble, in shape some­thing like a winged sphinx, but the wings, instead of being car­ried ver­ti­cal­ly at the sides, were spread so that it seemed to hov­er. The pedestal, it appeared to me, was of bronze, and was thick with verdi­gris. It chanced that the face was towards me; the sight­less eyes seemed to watch me; there was the faint shad­ow of a smile on the lips. It was great­ly weath­er-worn, and that impart­ed an unpleas­ant sug­ges­tion of dis­ease. I stood look­ing at it for a lit­tle space – half a minute, per­haps, or half an hour. It seemed to advance and to recede as the hail drove before it denser or thin­ner. At last I tore my eyes from it for a moment and saw that the hail cur­tain had worn thread­bare, and that the sky was light­en­ing with the promise of the Sun.

“I looked up again at the crouch­ing white shape, and the full temer­i­ty of my voy­age came sud­den­ly upon me. What might appear when that hazy cur­tain was alto­geth­er with­drawn? What might not have hap­pened to men? What if cru­el­ty had grown into a com­mon pas­sion? What if in this inter­val the race had lost its man­li­ness and had devel­oped into some­thing inhu­man, unsym­pa­thet­ic, and over­whelm­ing­ly pow­er­ful? I might seem some old-world sav­age ani­mal, only the more dread­ful and dis­gust­ing for our com­mon like­ness – a foul crea­ture to be incon­ti­nent­ly slain.

“Already I saw oth­er vast shapes – huge build­ings with intri­cate para­pets and tall columns, with a wood­ed hill-side dim­ly creep­ing in upon me through the less­en­ing storm. I was seized with a pan­ic fear. I turned fran­ti­cal­ly to the Time Machine, and strove hard to read­just it. As I did so the shafts of the sun smote through the thun­der­storm. The grey down­pour was swept aside and van­ished like the trail­ing gar­ments of a ghost. Above me, in the intense blue of the sum­mer sky, some faint brown shreds of cloud whirled into noth­ing­ness. The great build­ings about me stood out clear and dis­tinct, shin­ing with the wet of the thun­der­storm, and picked out in white by the unmelt­ed hail­stones piled along their cours­es. I felt naked in a strange world. I felt as per­haps a bird may feel in the clear air, know­ing the hawk wings above and will swoop. My fear grew to fren­zy. I took a breath­ing space, set my teeth, and again grap­pled fierce­ly, wrist and knee, with the machine. It gave under my des­per­ate onset and turned over. It struck my chin vio­lent­ly. One hand on the sad­dle, the oth­er on the lever, I stood pant­i­ng heav­i­ly in atti­tude to mount again.

“But with this recov­ery of a prompt retreat my courage recov­ered. I looked more curi­ous­ly and less fear­ful­ly at this world of the remote future. In a cir­cu­lar open­ing, high up in the wall of the near­er house, I saw a group of fig­ures clad in rich soft robes. They had seen me, and their faces were direct­ed towards me.

“Then I heard voic­es approach­ing me. Com­ing through the bush­es by the White Sphinx were the heads and shoul­ders of men run­ning. One of these emerged in a path­way lead­ing straight to the lit­tle lawn upon which I stood with my machine. He was a slight crea­ture – per­haps four feet high – clad in a pur­ple tunic, gir­dled at the waist with a leather belt. San­dals or buskins – I could not clear­ly dis­tin­guish which – were on his feet; his legs were bare to the knees, and his head was bare. Notic­ing that, I noticed for the first time how warm the air was.

“He struck me as being a very beau­ti­ful and grace­ful crea­ture, but inde­scrib­ably frail. His flushed face remind­ed me of the more beau­ti­ful kind of con­sump­tive – that hec­tic beau­ty of which we used to hear so much. At the sight of him I sud­den­ly regained con­fi­dence. I took my hands from the machine.

brass brɑːs n Yel­low­ish alloy of cop­per and zinc, some­times includ­ing small amounts of oth­er met­als.

to give some­thing the last tap ⇒ To make a final check of some­thing

quartz kwɔːts n Hard, colour­less, trans­par­ent min­er­al sub­stance, used in mak­ing elec­tron­ic equip­ment and accu­rate watch­es and clocks.

rod rɒd n Rel­a­tive­ly long, straight piece of met­al or oth­er sol­id mate­r­i­al: bar, stick, shaft, slab

sad­dle ˈsædl n The seat of a bicy­cle, motor­cy­cle, or sim­i­lar vehi­cle.

lever ˈliːvə n Pro­ject­ing han­dle used to adjust or oper­ate a mech­a­nism.

seemed to ⇒ To appear to one’s own mind, sens­es, etc.

reel riːl v To revolve quick­ly and repeat­ed­ly around one’s own axis.

or so ⇒ (of quan­ti­ties) Impre­cise but fair­ly close to.

set one’s teeth ⇒ To pre­pare to meet firm­ly some­thing dif­fi­cult or unpleas­ant.

grip grɪp v To seize firm­ly.

thud θʌd n Dull sound, as that of a heavy object strik­ing a sol­id sur­face.

hazy ˈheɪzi adj Filled or abound­ing with fog or mist: bru­mous, fog­gy, misty

tra­verse ˈtrævə(ː)s v To move over, along, through, or across.

to shoot across some­thing ⇒ To pass very quick­ly through.

to turn out a lamp ⇒ To switch off a lamp.

eddy ˈɛdi v To move like a rapid rotary cur­rent of liq­uid: whirl, swirl

mur­mur ˈmɜːmə v To make a low, con­tin­u­ous sound.

pecu­liar pɪˈkjuːliə adj Not usu­al or nor­mal.

exces­sive ɪkˈsɛsɪv adj Exceed­ing a nor­mal or rea­son­able lim­it: extreme, undue, extrav­a­gant, immod­er­ate, over­much

switch­back ˈswɪʧbæk n Road, trail, or rail­road track that ascends a steep incline in a zigzag course; a roller coast­er.

head­long ˈhɛdlɒŋ adv With the head lead­ing: head­first

antic­i­pa­tion ænˌtɪsɪˈpeɪʃ(ə)n n The state of being hap­py and excit­ed about some­thing upcom­ing.

immi­nent ˈɪmɪnənt adj Some­thing that is like­ly to hap­pen very soon.

smash smæʃ n Heavy blow, hit or col­li­sion.

to put on pace ⇒ To has­ten, to hur­ry.

flap flæp v To move (wings, arms, etc): beat, wave, flop, flut­ter, wag­gle

hop hɒp v To move with light bound­ing leaps; to move quick­ly or busi­ly.

scaf­fold­ing ˈskæfəldɪŋ n Mate­ri­als used for con­struct­ing plat­forms or frame­works.

snail sneɪl n Fresh­wa­ter, marine or ter­res­tri­al gas­tro­pod mol­lusk usu­al­ly hav­ing an exter­nal enclos­ing spi­ral shell.

twin­kle ˈtwɪŋkl v To shine with inter­mit­tent gleams: flash, wink, blink, flick­er, glim­mer

suc­ces­sion səkˈsɛʃən n Way in which things fol­low each oth­er: order, sequence, pro­ces­sion, con­se­cu­tion

inter­mit­tent ˌɪntə(ː)ˈmɪtənt adj Stop­ping and start­ing at inter­vals: occa­sion­al, peri­od­ic, spo­radic, fit­ful

to have a glimpse ⇒ To catch a sight of, to spot.

to gain veloc­i­ty ⇒ To gather/pick up speed.

pal­pi­ta­tion ˌpælpɪˈteɪʃən n Trem­bling or shak­ing; irreg­u­lar, rapid beat­ing or pul­sa­tion.

splen­did ˈsplɛndɪd adj Bril­liant or fine, espe­cial­ly in appear­ance: excel­lent, won­der­ful, mar­vel­lous

lumi­nous ˈluːmɪnəs adj Soft­ly bright or radi­ant.

twi­light ˈtwaɪlaɪt n The time of day imme­di­ate­ly fol­low­ing sun­set in which the light from the sky is dif­fused.

jerk ʤɜːk v To move in sud­den abrupt motions: jolt

streak striːk n Line or band dif­fer­en­ti­at­ed by col­or or tex­ture from its sur­round­ings: trace

fluc­tu­ate ˈflʌk­tjʊeɪt v To vary irreg­u­lar­ly.

flick­er ˈflɪkə v To move waver­ing­ly.

misty ˈmɪsti adj Cov­ered by a thin coat­ing: dim, hazy, filmy, becloud­ed, blurred, fog­gy, in­distinct

vague veɪg adj Not clear­ly per­cep­ti­ble: faint, dim, obscure, hazy, misty, bleary, cloudy, unclear

puff pʌf n Brief, sud­den emis­sion of air, vapour, or smoke.

vapour ˈveɪpə n Cloudy dif­fused mat­ter, such as mist, fumes, or smoke, sus­pend­ed in the air.

shiv­er ˈʃɪvə v To shake slight­ly because of cold, fear, etc.

hand hænd n Any of the rotat­ing point­ers used as index­es on the face of a mechan­i­cal clock or dial.

dial ˈdaɪəl n Grad­u­at­ed sur­face on which a mea­sure­ment, such as speed, is indi­cat­ed by a mov­ing nee­dle or point­er; the face of a clock.

sway sweɪ v To move back and forth or from side to side: weave, stag­ger, teeter, waver

sol­stice ˈsɒl­stɪs n Either of two times of the year when the sun is at its great­est dis­tance from the celes­tial equa­tor.

poignant ˈpɔɪnənt adj Phys­i­cal­ly painful; pierc­ing.

at last ⇒ After a long wait; final­ly.

exhil­a­ra­tion ɪgˌzɪləˈreɪʃən n The state of being stim­u­lat­ed, refre­shed, or elat­ed: ani­ma­tion, ela­tion, eupho­ria, exal­ta­tion

clum­sy ˈklʌmzi adj Lack­ing phys­i­cal coor­di­na­tion, skill, or grace: awk­ward

to attend to some­thing ⇒ To pay atten­tion to some­thing

futu­ri­ty fju(ː)ˈtjʊərɪti n The future.

I scarce thought of ⇒ I didn’t think of, I hard­ly thought of; scarce skeəs adv Scarce­ly, only just.

there­with ðeəˈwɪθ adv In addi­tion to; right after that.

dread drɛd n Fear­ful expec­ta­tion or antic­i­pa­tion.

to take pos­ses­sion of some­one ⇒ To seize, to gain influ­ence or con­trol over.

rudi­men­ta­ry ˌruːdɪˈmɛn­təri adj Ele­men­tary; being in the ear­li­est stages of devel­op­ment.

elu­sive ɪˈluːsɪv adj Tend­ing to elude cap­ture, per­cep­tion, etc.: eva­sive, slip­pery

fluc­tu­ate ˈflʌk­tjʊeɪt v To vary irreg­u­lar­ly.

glim­mer ˈglɪmə n A flash of light: gleam, gleam­ing

mist mɪst n Mass of fine droplets of water in the atmos­phere near or in con­tact with the earth: fog

win­try ˈwɪn­tri adj Very cold: icy, polar, frosty, freez­ing

inter­mis­sion ˌɪntə(ː)ˈmɪʃən n An inter­val of time between peri­ods of activ­i­ty.

veil veɪl n A piece of opaque, trans­par­ent, or mesh mate­r­i­al worn over the face for con­ceal­ment or pro­tec­tion or to enhance the appear­ance: cov­er, mask, cloak, veneer

my mind came round to the busi­ness of ⇒ my mind returned to the idea of.

veloc­i­ty vɪˈlɒsɪti n Rapid­i­ty of motion or oper­a­tion: swift­ness; speed

scarce­ly ˈskeəs­li adv Bare­ly; hard­ly; not quite, almost not.

so to speak ⇒ If I can express in that way.

atten­u­ate əˈtɛn­jʊeɪt v To lessen the ener­gy or strength of: weak­en, under­mine, sap, enfee­ble

inter­stice ɪnˈtɜːstɪs n Small or nar­row space between things.

to come to a stop ⇒ To cease, to halt.

jar ʤɑː v To hit or shake force­ful­ly.

pro­longed prəʊˈlɒŋd adj Length­ened in dura­tion.

to upset one’s nerves ⇒ dis­turb one’s com­pos­ture.

a gust of ⇒ A sud­den rush of.

petu­lance ˈpɛtjʊləns n The con­di­tion or qual­i­ty of being irri­ta­ble, peev­ish, or impa­tient: bad tem­per, irri­tabil­i­ty

forth­with ˈfɔːθˈwɪθ adv With­out delay: now, direct­ly, imme­di­ate­ly, at once

to lug over ⇒ To pull with great effort.

incon­ti­nent­ly ɪnˈkɒn­tɪnəntli adv Imme­di­ate­ly, instan­ta­neous­ly.

reel riːl v Revolve quick­ly and repeat­ed­ly around one’s own axis: spin, spin around, whirl

clap klæp n Sud­den, loud, explo­sive sound.

stun stʌn v To ren­der sense­less: par­a­lyze, stu­pe­fy, benumb

hail heɪl n Rain of round­ed pieces of ice and hard snow that usu­al­ly falls dur­ing thun­der­storms.

hiss hɪs v To make a sharp sibi­lant sound: siz­zle, swish, whiz, fiz­zle

turf tɜːf n Sur­face lay­er of earth con­tain­ing a dense growth of grass and its mat­ted roots: sod

over­set ˌəʊvəˈsɛt adj Upset, over­turned or over­thrown.

lawn lɔːn adj Lot of grass, usu­al­ly mowed, as one around a res­i­dence or in a park.

rhodo­den­dron ˌrəʊdəˈdɛn­drən n An ever­green orna­men­tal shrub with clus­ters of var­i­ous­ly coloured, often bell-shaped flow­ers.

mauve məʊv adj Mod­er­ate gray­ish vio­let to mod­er­ate red­dish pur­ple colour.

blos­som ˈblɒsəm n A flower or a group of flow­ers.

rebound rɪˈbaʊnd v To bounce or spring back from the force of hit­ting some­thing: bounce, take a hop, spring, recoil, ric­o­chet

wet to the skin ⇒ Wet through, soaked.

loom luːm v To appear in an impres­sive­ly large or great form.

indis­tinct­ly ˌɪndɪsˈtɪŋk­tli adj In a dim and nnd not clear­ly per­ceived man­ner: faint, vague, dim­ly

down­pour ˈdaʊn­pɔː n Heavy fall of rain.

birch bɜːʧ n Decid­u­ous tree with flow­ers in catkins, sim­ple, toothed leaves, and bark that often peels in thin papery lay­ers.

mar­ble ˈmɑːbl n Rock formed by alter­ation of lime­stone and used espe­cial­ly in archi­tec­ture and sculp­ture.

sphinx sfɪŋks n Greek Mythol­o­gy A winged crea­ture hav­ing the head of a woman and the body of a lion.

hov­er ˈhɒvə v To float in the air with­out mov­ing in any direc­tion.

pedestal ˈpɛdɪstl n An archi­tec­tur­al base for a stat­ue.

thick with verdi­gris ⇒ Cov­ered with a thick lay­er of green pati­na; verdi­gris ˈvɜːdɪ­grɪs n Green pati­na formed on cop­per, brass, and bronze exposed to air for long peri­ods of time.

It chanced that ⇒ It so hap­pened that.

weath­er-worn = weath­er beat­en ⇒ Show­ing signs of being in the sun, wind, rain etc.

impart ɪmˈpɑːt v Pro­vide a par­tic­u­lar qual­i­ty or char­ac­ter.

recede ri(ː)ˈsiːd v To move away grad­u­al­ly.

dense dɛns adj Per­mit­ting lit­tle light to pass through, because of com­pact­ness of mat­ter: heavy, thick

thread­bare ˈθrɛd­beə adj Show­ing signs of wear and tear: dingy, shab­by, run-down, shod­dy, fad­ed, seedy, tat­tered

light­en ˈlaɪtn n To become bright, light, or clear.

crouch kraʊʧ v To bend low: hud­dle, squat, hunch, hun­ker

temer­i­ty tɪˈmɛrɪti n Fool­hardy dis­re­gard of dan­ger: reck­less­ness, rash­ness

voy­age ˈvɔɪɪʤ n A jour­ney, trav­el, or pas­sage, esp one to a dis­tant land or by sea or air: jour­ney

to come upon ⇒ To be overwhelmed/seized by an emo­tion.

man­li­ness ˈmæn­lɪnɪs n The trait of being man­ly; hav­ing the char­ac­ter­is­tics of an adult male: mas­culin­i­ty, man­hood

unsym­pa­thet­ic ˌʌnˌsɪm­pəˈθɛtɪk adj Not aware of the needs, feel­ings, prob­lems, and views of oth­ers.

over­whelm­ing ˌəʊvəˈwɛlmɪŋ adj Over­pow­er­ing in effect or strength: stun­ning, stag­ger­ing

dread­ful ˈdrɛd­fʊl adj Excep­tion­al­ly bad or dis­pleas­ing, caus­ing fear or ter­ror: ter­ri­ble, hor­ri­ble, appalling

dis­gust­ing dɪsˈgʌstɪŋ adj Some­thing extreme­ly unpleas­ant and com­plete­ly unac­cept­able: dis­taste­ful, foul, loath­some, repelling, wicked

like­ness ˈlaɪknɪs m The qual­i­ty of being sim­i­lar to some­one or some­thing else.

slay sleɪ (slew sluː, slain sleɪn) v To take the life of (a per­son or per­sons) unlaw­ful­ly: kill, fin­ish, destroy, mur­der

intri­cate ˈɪn­trɪkɪt adj Hav­ing many inter­re­lat­ed parts or facets: elab­o­rate

para­pet ˈpærəpɪt n A low wall or rail­ing to pro­tect the edge of a plat­form, roof, or bridge.

wood­ed ˈwʊdɪd v Cov­ered with grow­ing trees and bush­es etc.

lessen ˈlɛsn v To become small­er in amount, lev­el, strenght, impor­tance etc: decrease, dimin­ish, fall

fran­ti­cal­ly ˈfræntɪk(ə)li adj Char­ac­ter­ized by rapid and dis­or­dered or ner­vous activ­i­ty: mad­ly

strive straɪv (strove strəʊv, striv­en ˈstrɪvn) v To devote seri­ous effort or ener­gy: endeav­or

shaft ʃɑːft n Ray of light.

smite smaɪt (smote sməʊt, smit­ten ˈsmɪtn) v To hit it hard.

thun­der­storm ˈθʌndəstɔːm n A tran­sient, some­times vio­lent storm of thun­der and light­ning, often accom­pa­nied by rain and some­times hail.

to sweep aside ⇒ To move aside.

gar­ment ˈgɑːmənt n Any arti­cle of cloth­ing.

shred ʃrɛd n A piece cut or torn off, espe­cial­ly in a nar­row strip.

whirl wɜːl v To rotate rapid­ly: spin, swirl, twirl

to pick out ⇒ To dis­tin­guish an object from its sur­round­ings, as in paint­ing.

hail­stone ˈheɪl­stəʊn n A pel­let of hail.

course kɔːs n A con­tin­u­ous lay­er of build­ing mate­r­i­al, such as brick or tile, on a wall or roof of a build­ing.

hawk hɔːk n A bird of prey that has a short hooked beak and curved claws and is sim­i­lar to but usu­al­ly small­er than an eagle.

swoop swuːp v To move in a sud­den sweep: dive, plunge, nose-dive

fren­zy ˈfrɛnzi n State of vio­lent men­tal agi­ta­tion or wild excite­ment.

to take a breath­ing space ⇒ To take a breath of air.

to set one’s teeth ⇒ To clench one’s teeth togeth­er; become res­olute.

grap­ple ˈgræ­pl v To seize firm­ly.

onset ˈɒn­sɛt n An assault or attack: attack, onslaught, onrush

prompt prɒmpt adj Occur­ring or per­formed exact­ly at the time appoint­ed: time­ly, punc­tu­al

retreat rɪˈtriːt n The act of with­draw­ing, espe­cial­ly from some­thing haz­ardous, for­mi­da­ble, or unpleas­ant; a place afford­ing peace or secu­ri­ty: with­draw­al, evac­u­a­tion, escape, pull­back, pull­out, reces­sion

clothe kləʊð pt, pp clad klæd v To clothe; to cov­er with a pro­tec­tive lay­er of oth­er mate­r­i­al.

robe rəʊb n Long, loose or flow­ing gar­ment worn as cer­e­mo­ni­al or offi­cial dress.

tunic ˈtjuːnɪk n Loose-fit­ting gar­ment, sleeved or sleeve­less, extend­ing to the knees and worn by men and women.

gir­dle ˈgɜːdl v To encir­cle with or as if with a belt: encir­cle, enclose, encom­pass

san­dal ˈsændl n A shoe con­sist­ing of a sole fas­tened by straps to the foot.

buskin ˈbʌskɪn n Foot and leg cov­er­ing reach­ing halfway to the knee.

inde­scrib­ably ˌɪndɪsˈkraɪbəbli adv To an inex­press­ible degree: inef­fa­bly, unut­ter­ably, unspeak­ably, inex­press­ibly

frail freɪl adj Phys­i­cal­ly weak: del­i­cate

con­sump­tive kənˈsʌm℗tɪv adj Of, relat­ing to, or suf­fer­ing from tuber­cu­lo­sis of the lungs.

hec­tic ˈhɛk­tɪk adj Char­ac­ter­ized by intense emo­tion and activ­i­ty: fevered, fer­vid, heat­ed

at the sight of some­one ⇒ see­ing some­one.

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