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Retributive

adjective
1.
Of or relating to or having the nature of retribution.  Synonyms: relatiative, retaliatory, retributory, vindicatory.
2.
Given or inflicted in requital according to merits or deserts.  Synonyms: retributory, vindicatory.






WordNet 3.0 © 2010 Princeton University








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"Retributive" Quotes from Famous Books



... perspiration flowed from his pallid face. Yet, with the exception of his own clique, there was scarcely an individual present who did not hope that this trial would put an end to his career of blood. After all, there was something of the retributive justice of Providence even in the conduct and feelings of the jury; for, in point of fact, it was more on account of his private crimes and private infamy that they, however wrongly, brought in their verdict. Here was he, encircled by their knowledge ...
— Willy Reilly - The Works of William Carleton, Volume One • William Carleton

... doubt? Eager as was her curiosity on this all-absorbing subject, Venetia could never summon courage to speak upon it to her mother. Her first disobedience, or rather her first deception of her mother, in reference to this very subject, had brought, and brought so swiftly on its retributive wings, such disastrous consequences, that any allusion to Lady Annabel was restrained by a species of superstitious fear, against which Venetia could not contend. Then her father was either dead or living. That was certain. If dead, it was ...
— Venetia • Benjamin Disraeli

... judgment; penalty &c. 974; retribution; thunderbolt, Nemesis; requital &c. (reward) 973; penology; retributive justice. lash, scaffold &c. (instrument of punishment) 975; imprisonment &c. (restraint) 751; transportation, banishment, expulsion, exile, involuntary exile, ostracism; penal servitude, hard labor; galleys &c. 975; ...
— Roget's Thesaurus

... find what it wanted? This is intellect. The weeds, on the other hand, have hateful moral qualities. To cut down a weed is, therefore, to do a moral action. I feel as if I were destroying a sin. My hoe becomes an instrument of retributive justice. I am an apostle of nature. This view of the matter lends a dignity to the art of hoeing which nothing else does, and lifts it into the region of ethics. Hoeing becomes, not a pastime, but a duty. And you get to regard it so, as the days ...
— Humorous Masterpieces from American Literature • Various

... right, and prevent what is wrong. I believe in no "expediency" that is not predicated of justice, for in all things—politics, as well as everything else—I know that "honesty is the best policy." A retributive Providence will unerringly and speedily search out all wrong-doing; hence, right is always the best in the long run. Certainly,, in the light of the great American spirit of liberty and equal rights which is sweeping ...
— A Unique Story of a Marvellous Career. Life of Hon. Phineas T. • Joel Benton

... vegetation. He gives us a lively impression of the capabilities of the country, and of the results which are to follow the introduction of steam-navigation on the Amoor. Like a true American, he believes in the manifest destiny of Russia, and looks forward to the not distant time when, with a kind of retributive justice, the Muscovite is to swallow up the Manchew, as Charles Lamb used to call him. Already American merchants have established themselves at the mouth of the Amoor, and, unless Mr. Collins is oversanguine, ...
— Atlantic Monthly, Vol. 5, No. 32, June, 1860 • Various

... captives should return, and that Babylon itself should afterward be destroyed. The first prediction was fulfilled by the victory of Cyrus. It devolved on Darius to execute the second of these solemn and retributive ...
— Darius the Great - Makers of History • Jacob Abbott

... the headmaster say reproachfully to an industrious boy who had committed a fault, 'I might have expected this in Thomas Idle, but it is inexcusable, sir, in you, who know better.' Never more, after winning that fatal prize, did he escape the retributive imposition, or the avenging birch. From that time, the masters made him work, and the boys would not let him play. From that time his social position steadily declined, and his life at school became a perpetual burden ...
— The Lazy Tour of Two Idle Apprentices • Charles Dickens

... judgment-seat and a system of rewards and punishments in the world to come. While this doctrine again, in its development and detail, differs essentially from that of the Christian faith, it is well to call attention to it as a point of contact. It breathes the spirit of karma, which, in its retributive power, has been compared by some to the doctrine of heredity, and by others, to that of fate. Karma demands the full future fruition of every act done in the body; and many re-births, with intervals of keener suffering and bliss in numerous hells and heavens, are the countless steps in the doleful ...
— India's Problem Krishna or Christ • John P. Jones

... remark—assumes to be the reformer and castigator of his age—a reformer in philosophy, in politics, in religion—denouncing its mechanical method of thinking, deploring its utter want of faith, and threatening political society, obstinately deaf to the voice of wisdom, with the retributive horrors of repeated revolutions; and yet neither in philosophy, in religion, nor in politics, has Mr Carlyle any distinct dogma, creed, or constitution to promulgate. The age is irreligious, he exclaims, ...
— Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine—Vol. 54, No. 333, July 1843 • Various

... are honest, frugal, and attentive to their duties, should be liberally rewarded, which would encourage merit, and stimulate servants to acquit themselves with propriety. The contrary conduct is often visited with a kind of retributive justice in the course of a few years. The extravagant and idle in servitude are ill prepared for the industry and sobriety on which their own future welfare so essentially depends. Their faults, and the attendant punishment ...
— The Cook and Housekeeper's Complete and Universal Dictionary; Including a System of Modern Cookery, in all Its Various Branches, • Mary Eaton

... of the unchristian words he had uttered smote his heart with fear; fear lest the retributive hand of Heaven should have punished his pride, even in the moment of offence, by taking away the child whose happiness he was preparing to sacrifice, and of whose death he had ...
— The King's Highway • G. P. R. James

... Figurantes (never plump on earth) admire, while with uplifted toe retributive you inflict vengeance incorporeal upon the shadowy rear of obnoxious ...
— The Works of Charles and Mary Lamb, Volume 2 • Charles Lamb

... present work is unexceptionable in this respect, while the cases possess extraordinary interest, and are replete with instruction. They afford much insight of human motives, and teach impressive lessons of the retributive justice of Providence, and the misery and ...
— The Expedition to Borneo of H.M.S. Dido - For the Suppression of Piracy • Henry Keppel

... are apt to conclude that she can have no real attachment to a fellow so uninteresting to themselves as her husband, but has married him on other grounds. Who, under such circumstances, pities the husband? Even his female friends are apt to think his position retributive: he should have chosen some one else. But perhaps Deronda may be excused that he did not prepare any pity for Grandcourt, who had never struck acquaintances as likely to come out of his experiences with ...
— Daniel Deronda • George Eliot

... our fellow-citizens who press forward into the wilderness and are the pioneers in the work of its reclamation. In securing to all such their rights of preemption the Government performs but an act of retributive justice for sufferings encountered and hardships endured, and finds ample remuneration in the comforts which its policy insures and the ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents: Tyler - Section 2 (of 3) of Volume 4: John Tyler • Compiled by James D. Richardson

... from whence he went to Corinth. It would have been well for the mutineers if their taste for music had been as great as the dolphin's, for the history not only affords a grand instance of the power of music, but of retributive justice, as the sailors accidentally going to Corinth, paid the penalty of their ...
— The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction - Vol. 14, Issue 394, October 17, 1829 • Various

... believed that it would be judged in Amenthe by Osiris and his forty-two assessors, before whom it was brought by Analis; they had an Elysium, surrounded by waters, where the Osirian—that is, the happy dead—ploughed, sowed, reaped, and threshed, as on earth—a singular want of fancy. Retributive pains, by fire and steel, are also supposed to have been detected among the paintings. At the same time they held and taught to the Greeks the doctrine of metempsychosis. It is difficult to reconcile with either of these notions their belief that the spirit dwelt in the body so long ...
— The International Magazine, Volume 2, No. 3, February, 1851 • Various

... attend poor Mr Spinney, was her sole confidant, and readily entered into a scheme which was pleasing to his mistress, and promised revenge for the treatment he had received; and which, as Miss Dragwell declared, would be nothing but retributive justice upon Mrs Forster. ...
— Newton Forster • Frederick Marryat

... either one of them in the wife's regulation terms of virtuous sarcasm, as woman, creature, or thing, for losing their hearts to her husband. But life, what was it, and who was she? She had, like the singer of the psalm of Asaph, been plagued and chastened all the day long; but could she, by retributive words, in order to please herself—the individual—"offend against the generation," as he ...
— The Woodlanders • Thomas Hardy

... empirical fact that we can help one another remains in Buddhism (as in any retributive scheme) only by a serious inconsistency; and since this fact is the sanction of whatever moral efficacy can be attributed to Buddhism, in sobering, teaching, and saving mankind, anything inconsistent with it is fundamentally repugnant to the whole system. ...
— The Life of Reason • George Santayana

... Herring, and he would move the business of his Companies too. If that young Soames were such a man of property, he would never miss a thousand a year or so; and under his great white moustache old Jolyon grimly smiled. He felt that what he was doing was in the nature of retributive justice, richly deserved. ...
— Forsyte Saga • John Galsworthy

... look of wonder and inquiry. "My booby cousin is dead!" cried he, "may he rest in peace! He nearly broke his neck in a fall from his horse in a fox-chase. By good luck he lived long enough to make his will. He has made me his heir, partly out of an odd feeling of retributive justice, and partly because, as he says, none of his own family or friends know how to enjoy such an estate. I'm off to the country to take possession. I've done with authorship.—That for the critics!" said he, snapping his fingers. "Come down to Doubting Castle ...
— Tales of a Traveller • Washington Irving

... ermine's; but not therefore to confuse God with the Hudson's Bay Company, nor to hunt foxes for their brushes instead of their skins, or think the poor little black tails of a Siberian weasel on a judge's shoulders may constitute him therefore a Minos in matters of retributive justice, or an AEacus in distributive, who can at once determine how many millions a Railroad Company are to make the public pay for not granting them their exclusive business ...
— Love's Meinie - Three Lectures on Greek and English Birds • John Ruskin

... compassion than resentment. The queen at length recalled him to court; he was once more distinguished as a statesman and favourite; and the rest of his career is well known to history. But there was something retributive in his death, for it is believed he died by swallowing a draught of poison, designed ...
— The World's Greatest Books, Vol VII • Various

... self-restraint to avoid laughing,—a feeling which was modified by the desire to assure his employer that he understood this sort of thing perfectly, had run the same risks himself, and thought no less of a man, providing he was a gentleman, because of an unlucky retributive knock on the head. But he feared laughter would overclimb speech; and, indeed, with all expression of sympathy stifled, he did not succeed so completely in hiding the conflicting emotion but that Joseph did once turn his pale, grave face surprisedly, hearing a snuffling sound, ...
— The Grandissimes • George Washington Cable

... all others vanished as the stars of night before the rising of the god of day. Henry, I love you deeply, devotedly—but Catherine's terrible imprecations make me feel more keenly than I have ever done before the extent of the wrong I am about to inflict upon her—and I fear that retributive punishment will follow it." ...
— Windsor Castle • William Harrison Ainsworth

... The thought came to her: was it retributive justice pursuing her for having bartered herself for rank? And yet girls as good and better than she, did it every day. She rose and began pacing up and down the floor. What should she do? "Go back to Lady Helena," said the letter. Go back! cast off, deserted—she, ...
— A Terrible Secret • May Agnes Fleming

... love of 'smart' dealing: which gilds over many a swindle and gross breach of trust; many a defalcation, public and private; and enables many a knave to hold his head up with the best, who well deserves a halter; though it has not been without its retributive operation, for this smartness has done more in a few years to impair the public credit, and to cripple the public resources, than dull honesty, however rash, could have effected in a century. The merits of a broken speculation, or a bankruptcy, or of a successful scoundrel, are not gauged by ...
— American Notes for General Circulation • Charles Dickens

... "at last have captured the hearts of the common people and directed into positive channels and constructive programmes the very energies which otherwise may have spent themselves in the acts of retributive destruction." Reconstruction! This is now the world's watch-word. It sums up the various problems with which nations will have to grapple in every realm of human activity. It speaks of conditions that are no more and suggests new outlines of the social order. ...
— Catholic Problems in Western Canada • George Thomas Daly

... length and breadth and strength. And he, too, loved me passionately, devotedly. Strong indeed must have been the love that triumphed over principle, honor, and truth, that broke the most sacred of human ties, and dared the vengeance of retributive Heaven. ...
— Ernest Linwood - or, The Inner Life of the Author • Caroline Lee Hentz

... but the thought of vengeance. Yet, even at such a crisis, he should have remembered, that England, in strict accordance with the stern, unrelenting logic of events, having sown to the wind, might therefore have reaped the whirlwind. It is among the mysteries of Providence, that retributive justice, when visiting nations, often involves innocent victims,—but it is retributive justice still; and tracing up rightly the chain of causes and effects, it may be that the tragedies of Delhi and Lucknow are attributable, to say the least, as much to the avarice ...
— The Atlantic Monthly , Volume 2, No. 14, December 1858 • Various

... There is a difference between meeting a policeman on a lonely wharf and whistling a few operatic airs with him, and being caught by him crawling out of a freight-car. So Dick waited, as even a New Orleans policeman must move on some time—perhaps it is a retributive law of nature—and before long "Big Fritz" majestically disappeared between ...
— Roads of Destiny • O. Henry

... Settle. But the meretricious ornaments which he himself had introduced were within the reach of the meanest capacity; and, having been among the first to debauch the taste of the public, it was retributive justice that he should experience their inconstancy. Indeed Dryden seems himself to admit, that the principal difference between his heroic plays and "The Empress of Morocco," was, that the former were good sense, that looked like nonsense, and the latter nonsense, which ...
— The Dramatic Works of John Dryden Vol. I. - With a Life of the Author • Sir Walter Scott

... of science present this universe as not only progressive, but as retributive. There is a rebound of evil which makes for pain. Each broken law exacts a penalty. Each deed of sin is a forerunner of personal and of social disaster. The generation that sins shall be cut off, ...
— The Warriors • Lindsay, Anna Robertson Brown

... intemperance, obscenity and corrupting diseases, to degradation and death. A dissolute, licentious, free-and-easy life is filled with the dregs of human suffering, iniquity and despair. The penalties which follow a violation of the law of chastity are found to be severe and swiftly retributive. ...
— Searchlights on Health - The Science of Eugenics • B. G. Jefferis and J. L. Nichols

... menace, the Turk. In the priesthood men could mark much that was amiss; and the seamless robe of Christ was rent with schism, the candle that Hus and Jerome had lighted a century before, still burning clearly among less sober heresies, which drew down on it, as upon themselves, spasmodic outbursts of retributive violence. Uneasy sat the crown on Ladislas' head; and when Death, coming as a friend, took it from him in 1516, it was only to thrust this sad office upon a ten-year-old boy, who after ten more years of childish government was miserably to perish at Mohacz. No wonder that Slechta ...
— The Age of Erasmus - Lectures Delivered in the Universities of Oxford and London • P. S. Allen

... To drag her out of a steamer wreck, only to make her the victim of a scoundrel, later an adventuress, and finally a murderess, all may be good art, but of a very bad kind. Laura is a sort of American Becky Sharp; but there is retributive justice in Becky's fate, whereas Laura's doom is warranted only by the author's whim. As for her end, whatever the virtuous public of that day might have done, a present-day audience would not have ...
— Mark Twain, A Biography, 1835-1910, Complete - The Personal And Literary Life Of Samuel Langhorne Clemens • Albert Bigelow Paine

... was on his second visit from India. His see was usually mispronounced as Nankipoo. He was following us up to consecrate the graves of our battlefields. Great delight was given by the thought that Westlake's still unexploded bombs would receive consecration also for any retributive work that awaited them. And we brooded over the suggestion that the good Bishop might find, even in Mesopotamia, ...
— The Leicestershires beyond Baghdad • Edward John Thompson

... who is also called Canute, "marked one of his royal Christmases by a piece of sudden retributive justice: bored beyond all endurance by the Saxon Edric's iteration of the traitorous services he had rendered him, the King exclaimed to Edric, Earl of Northumberland: 'Then let him receive his deserts, that he may not betray us as he betrayed Ethelred and Edmund!' upon ...
— Christmas: Its Origin and Associations - Together with Its Historical Events and Festive Celebrations During Nineteen Centuries • William Francis Dawson

... from a winder,' said Dark Dignum, a little later, as he were drinkin' hisself hoarse in the Black Boy. 'Summut fell on him retributive, as you might call it. For, would you believe it, the man had at the moment been threatenin' me? He did. He said, "I know damn well about you, Dignum; and for all your damn ingenuity, I'll bring you with a ...
— At a Winter's Fire • Bernard Edward J. Capes

... shook hands. Nikasti had slipped noiselessly from the room. Pamela made no effort to detain him. She had a curious feeling that the things which had passed between them concerned their two selves only. So had no desire whatever to hand him over to retributive justice. ...
— The Pawns Count • E. Phillips Oppenheim

... *the relations of the individual human soul to God*, Christianity opens to our view a department of duty paramount to all others in importance and interest. His fatherly love and care, his moral government and discipline, his retributive providence, define with unmistakable distinctness certain corresponding modes, in part, of outward action, and in still greater part, of action in that inward realm of thought whence the outward life receives its ...
— A Manual of Moral Philosophy • Andrew Preston Peabody

... "Essay on the Poetry of Gray," says of this Ode: "The tendency of The Bard is to show the retributive justice that follows an act of tyranny and wickedness; to denounce on Edward, in his person and his progeny, the effect of the crime he had committed in the massacre of the bards; to convince him that neither his power nor situation ...
— Select Poems of Thomas Gray • Thomas Gray

... to pass on to higher planes of being, and that many people are now entering into a stage which will terminate the unconscious reincarnation, and which enables them to incarnate consciously in the future without loss of memory. It teaches that instead of a retributive Karma, there is a Law of Spiritual Cause and Effect, operating largely along the lines of Desire and what has been called the "Law of Attraction," by which "like attracts like," in persons, environments, conditions, etc. ...
— Reincarnation and the Law of Karma - A Study of the Old-New World-Doctrine of Rebirth, and Spiritual Cause and Effect • William Walker Atkinson

... her an overwhelming sense of infinite solace for the wronged and lost, and of the retributive justice with which man's transgressions will be visited—this is, indeed, to hazard all things in the certainty of an upright ...
— Recollections of Dante Gabriel Rossetti - 1883 • T. Hall Caine

... appears in the chronicles of the times and establishes beyond cavil exactly what Las Casas did, and under what circumstances and for what purposes he made the recommendation which he never afterwards ceased to deplore. Retributive justice has followed these attempts of several lesser contemporaries of Robertson to asperse the character of one of the purest, noblest, and most humane of men, and while discredit has overtaken the inventors and publishers of these falsehoods, the investigations ...
— Bartholomew de Las Casas; his life, apostolate, and writings • Francis Augustus MacNutt

... of retributive plots, was steaming down the channel, cannonading on either side, when he suddenly became aware of breakers ahead. The city marshal and one of the deputies rose up behind some dry-goods boxes half a square to the front and opened fire. At the same time ...
— Heart of the West • O. Henry

... quite ceased to buy, and for the stipulated three years will pay their rent as usual, and why? Because they expect the Irish legislature to give them even better terms—or even to get the land for nothing. Retributive justice is satisfied. For the last twenty years the landlords have suffered fearfully. The present bill is radically unsound, and I trust it will never ...
— Ireland as It Is - And as It Would be Under Home Rule • Robert John Buckley (AKA R.J.B.)

... saying among the lower classes in reference to an unfortunate or crippled child. Here the word ingwa is used especially in the retributive sense. It usually signifies evil karma; kwaho being the term used in speaking of meritorious karma and its results. While an unfortunate child is spoken of as "a child of ingwa," a very lucky person is called a "kwaho-mono,"— that is to say, an ...
— In Ghostly Japan • Lafcadio Hearn

... book, Spenser is the apologist of Elizabeth for her conduct to her cousin, Mary Queen of Scots, and he has been very delicate in his distinctions. It is not her high abstraction of justice, Sir Artegal, who does the murderous deed, but his man Talus, retributive justice, who, like a limehound, finds her hidden under a heap of gold, and drags her forth by her fair locks, in such rueful plight that ...
— English Literature, Considered as an Interpreter of English History - Designed as a Manual of Instruction • Henry Coppee

... a ruthless killer, an outlaw of such evil reputation that men mentioned his name with awe in their voices—but she knew, now, that he had a keen sense of justice, and that the murder of her father had aroused the retributive instinct ...
— 'Drag' Harlan • Charles Alden Seltzer

... soldiers' huts were brought from the Bala Hissar, the demolition of which, as an act of retributive justice, I had recommended to the Government of India, as it appeared to me that the destruction of the fortified palace in which the massacre had taken place, and which was the symbol of the power of the Afghans and their boasted military strength, would be a more fitting punishment ...
— Forty-one years in India - From Subaltern To Commander-In-Chief • Frederick Sleigh Roberts

... rather than of a flesh-and-blood countenance, and all these were there as of yore, but the marvel of them failed of the customary tribute. Kitty, on scanty reflection, was at no loss to translate Peter's reserve into a language at once flattering and retributive. In her scheme of life he was always to be her devoted cavalier, as indeed he had been from the beginning. She loved her own small eminence too well to imperil her tenure of it by sharing its pretty view of men and things with any one. ...
— Judith Of The Plains • Marie Manning

... forgotten him, in spite of the base treachery practised by the man he had trusted. Through all his painful realizations, this angelic face of his beloved, soothed and comforted and cheered him until he felt a new strength in his arm and a new fire in his heart, urging him on to retributive action. ...
— Honor Edgeworth • Vera

... "From the seeming nature of the human mind, as well as from the evident imperfections in the administration of affairs, in both the natural and moral worlds, there must be a retributive scene of existence beyond ...
— The Letters of Robert Burns • Robert Burns

... upon this subject is to investigate God's disciplinary and retributive economy in races and nations, with a hope of arriving at some clear conclusion concerning ...
— Twentieth Century Negro Literature - Or, A Cyclopedia of Thought on the Vital Topics Relating - to the American Negro • Various

... food given to them by the laity. The more western accounts of the Manichaeans testify to these features as strongly as do the records from Central Asia and China. Cyril of Jerusalem in his polemic against them[1139] charges them with believing in retributive metempsychosis, he who kills an animal being changed into that animal after death. The Persian king Hormizd is said to have accused Mani of bidding people destroy the world, that is, to retire from social life and not have children. Alberuni[1140] states definitely that Mani wrote a book ...
— Hinduism and Buddhism, An Historical Sketch, Vol. 3 (of 3) • Charles Eliot

... curse to America in every one of its aspects and especially to the South, out of which it has eaten, with its revengeful and retributive teeth, all the vitalities and grandeurs of character which belong to the uncorrupted Anglo-Saxon race. It has destroyed all the incentives to industry, all self-reliance, and enterprise, and the sterner virtues and moralities of life. It has put a ban upon trade and manufactures, ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 6, No 4, October, 1864 - Devoted To Literature And National Policy • Various

... Dorothy's manner toward Teddy Mahr was undoubtedly one of encouragement. Honesty compelled Gard to own that he could not find in the boy the echo of the objectionable sire. Perhaps the long dead mother, who was never a lawful wife, had, by some retributive turn of justice, endowed him wholly with her own qualities. Gard could almost find it in his breast to like the big, large-hearted, gentle boy, but for a final irony of fate—the son's blind adoration of his father, and that father's obvious but helpless ...
— Out of the Ashes • Ethel Watts Mumford

... friends—and carry them through experiences and situations derived from our impressions of real life. Perhaps we rather led them a dance; and I daresay those we didn't like came in for a good deal of retributive justice. It was a little universe, of which we were the arch-arbiters, ...
— Grey Roses • Henry Harland

... finer artistic products from the commoner, modern art-criticism has probably wasted much honest but shamefaced capacity for appreciating the qualities common, because indispensable, to, all good art. It is therefore not without a certain retributive malignity that I end these examples of the storage and transfer of aesthetic emotion, and of the consequent bias to artistic appreciation, with that of the Nemesis dogging the steps of the connoisseur. We have all heard of some purchase, or all-but-purchase, ...
— The Beautiful - An Introduction to Psychological Aesthetics • Vernon Lee

... Man-stealing encouraged by law; Trial for a murdered slave; Female slave whipped to death, and during the torture delivered of a dead infant; Slaves murdered; Slave driven to death; Slaves killed with impunity; George, a slave, chopped piece-meal, and burnt by Lilburn Lewis; Retributive justice in the awful death of Lilburn Lewis; Trial of Isham Lewis, a ...
— The Anti-Slavery Examiner, Omnibus • American Anti-Slavery Society

... a near and human view, the beauty and interest of the position. We had neither of us ever before seen that degree and that special sort of personal success come to a woman for the first time so late in life. I found it an example of poetic, of absolutely retributive justice; so that my desire grew great to work it, as we say, on those lines. I had seen it all from the original moment at my studio; the poor lady had never known an hour's appreciation—which moreover, ...
— The Beldonald Holbein • Henry James

... penult couplet is not uncommon, the idea of retributive justice, of others performing the last offices for the clerk who had so often done the like for his neighbours. The same notion is expressed in the epitaph of Frank Raw, clerk and monumental mason, of Selby, Yorkshire, ...
— The Parish Clerk (1907) • Peter Hampson Ditchfield

... in its baffled rage was the expression of his face when he understood that indeed she knew everything. She even at that moment longed that his cruel instincts should prompt him to kill her. He could never succeed in hiding that crime and retributive justice would of a surety overtake him then, without any help ...
— The Nest of the Sparrowhawk • Baroness Orczy

... exasperated, hungry—the Agent utterly powerless to undo the wrong committed at Washington—and they resolved on savage vengeance. For every dollar of which they have been defrauded we shall pay ten dollars in the cost of the war. It has been so for fifty years; it will be so again. God's retributive justice always has compelled a people to reap exactly what they ...
— The Continental Monthly, Vol. 6, No 2, August, 1864 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... says,' continued the Good Stockbroker, 'that the tendency to monogamy is innate, and all the other forms of marriage have been temporary deviations, each bringing their own retributive evils. After all, monogamous marriage was instituted for the protection of women, and has been held sacred in the great and noble ages of the world. Quite apart from the moral point of view, however, polygamy could only be ...
— Modern marriage and how to bear it • Maud Churton Braby

... the following entry in the register of burials records the event, which is so replete with a singular retributive justice—so constituted to impress and sadden ...
— The Wits and Beaux of Society - Volume 1 • Grace Wharton and Philip Wharton

... Gull's Nest—had effected an almost miraculous escape, considering how closely he was guarded, a few hours before, and secreted himself in the very chamber where he had left poor Fleetword to starvation, little imagining that he was standing on the threshold of retributive justice. He had caught at flight, even so far, as a sort of reprieve; and was forming plans of future villany at the very moment the train was fired. God have mercy on all sinners! it is fearful to be cut off without time for repentance. Sir Willmott had ...
— The Buccaneer - A Tale • Mrs. S. C. Hall

... drunkenness. The death-in-life was too well portrayed. You smelt the fumy liquor that had brought on this syncope. Your only comfort lay in the forced reflection, that, real as he looked, the poor caitiff was but imaginary, a bit of painted canvass, whom no delirium tremens, nor so much as a retributive headache, awaited, ...
— The Blithedale Romance • Nathaniel Hawthorne

... best.' The gloomy thoughts which are charged against Scripture are the true thoughts about man and the world as man has made it. Not, indeed, that life needs to be so, but that by reason of our own evil and departure from God there have come in as a disturbing element the retributive consequences of our own godlessness, and these have made danger where else were safety, thirst where else were rivers of water, and weariness and lassitude where else were strength ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Isaiah and Jeremiah • Alexander Maclaren

... is that the punishment of evil-doers is in such exact correspondence with the character of their evil doings as to show that it is the Lord executing vengeance—the penalty shows a designing hand. He who watches the peculiar retributive judgments of God, how He causes those who set snares and pitfalls for others to fall into them themselves, will not doubt that behind such 'poetic retribution' there ...
— George Muller of Bristol - His Witness to a Prayer-Hearing God • Arthur T. Pierson

... there was a God to whom he was personally responsible; and he was encouraged to bear with dignity those sad reverses which humiliated his pride, and drank without complaint the dregs of that bitter cup which retributive justice held out in mercy before he died. It was his wife who revealed the deceitfulness, the hypocrisy, the treachery, and the heartlessness of that generation of vipers which he had trusted and enriched. She was more than the guardian of his interests; she was his faithful friend, who ...
— Beacon Lights of History, Volume VII • John Lord

... importance of obtaining the declaration, which I had no doubt would establish my innocence—I ran for my father and Sergeant Lindsay, and, to make assurance doubly sure, brought two of the privates also along with me. It was a striking scene of retributive justice, ...
— Wilson's Tales of the Borders and of Scotland, XXII • various

... describe him. If he set an imposition, the imposition must be done, and must be done at a certain time, without appeal, and causa indicta. Mr Paton was as deaf as Pluto to all excuses, and as inexorable as Rhadamanthus in his retributive dispensations. Neither Orpheus nor Amphion would have moved him. Orpheus might have made all the desks and forms dance round as they listened to his song, but he could never have got Mr Paton to ...
— St. Winifred's - The World of School • Frederic W. Farrar

... while fortune smiled upon them; while they revelled in the rewards of successful villany, retributive justice came upon them in a shape they had not anticipated. Jealousy and mistrust sprang up between the two confederates, and led to such violent and frequent quarrels, that Dee was in constant fear of exposure. Kelly imagined himself a much greater ...
— Memoirs of Extraordinary Popular Delusions - Vol. I • Charles Mackay

... of the Tower, the Earl Cornwallis, a good and loyal nobleman, who is, at this moment, fighting the rebels in my own native province, Christopher," interrupted the colonel; "that will be what I call retributive justice; but," continued the veteran, rising with an air of gentlemanly dignity, "it will not do to permit even the constable of the Tower of London to surpass the master of St. Ruth in hospitality and kindness to his prisoners. I have ordered ...
— The Pilot • J. Fenimore Cooper

... doctor regarded the incredulous, terror-stricken face of the father with bewildered fixity. Well he might. The first rod of the moral law had just struck him. The vengeance he had so subtly planned had turned into retributive justice. He had refused Kate's prayer; he had driven her to this mad search and the contagion now periling her life, or, if it were spared, leaving her a hideous specter of herself. This passed through his shattered mind as the ...
— The Iron Game - A Tale of the War • Henry Francis Keenan

... laugh, my lord, how many groans! Were all happy, or all miserable,—more tolerable then, than as it is. But happiness and misery are so broadly marked, that this Mardi may be the retributive future of some forgotten past.—Yet vain our surmises. Still vainer to say, that all Mardi is but a means to an end; that this life is a state of probation: that evil is but permitted for a term; that for ...
— Mardi: and A Voyage Thither, Vol. II (of 2) • Herman Melville

... bed with a bad cold, which she caught studying astronomy with Gershom. Poppsy was not in the least put out when she watched me preparing a mustard-plaster for the invalid. My daughter, I am persuaded, has a revived faith in the operation of retributive justice. But I hope Susie is better by the holiday. Whinnie has the Christmas Tree hidden away in the stable, and already a number of mysterious parcels have arrived at Casa Grande. Bud Teetzel very gallantly sent me over a huge turkey, an eighteen-pounder, and to-morrow I have ...
— The Prairie Child • Arthur Stringer

... also foreign to Wallencamp, that a delicate perfume went up from my garments, that my voice was more than usually winning. I experienced a dangerous sense of satisfaction in the conquest of this unsophisticated youth—a conquest not wholly without its retributive pain and intoxication. ...
— Cape Cod Folks • Sarah P. McLean Greene

... pheasants, and scuttling rabbits, and stupid hares kept crossing and recrossing, to the derangement of Mr. Watchorn's temper, and the detriment of the unsteady pack. Squeak, squeak, squeal sounded right and left, followed sometimes by the heavy retributive hand of Justice on the offenders' hides, and sometimes by the snarl, snap, and worry of a couple of hounds contending for the prey. Twang, twang, twang, still went the horn; and when the huntsman reached the unicorn-crested gates, between tea-caddy ...
— Mr. Sponge's Sporting Tour • R. S. Surtees

... kind. Surely it is. His promises to Israel had an 'if,' and the fulfilment of the conditions necessarily secured the accomplishment of the promises. The ritual of the first covenant transcends the strictly retributive compact which it ratified, and shadows a gospel beyond law, even the new covenant which brings better gifts, and does not turn on 'do,' but simply on the sprinkling with the blood of Jesus. The words of Moses were widened to carry a blessing beyond his thoughts, which was disclosed when, ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers • Alexander Maclaren

... the educative effect of the belief in a future life even when expressed in the crude and inadequate metaphor of reward and punishment. Few of us, I venture to think, have reached the moral level at which the belief—not in a vindictive, retributive, unending torment, but in a disciplinary or purgatorial education of souls prolonged after death—is without its value. At the same time it is a mere caricature of all higher religious beliefs when the religious motive is supposed to mean simply a fear of punishment and ...
— Philosophy and Religion - Six Lectures Delivered at Cambridge • Hastings Rashdall



Words linked to "Retributive" :   retaliatory, just, punitory, retributory, relatiative, vindicatory, punitive



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