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Vocabulary Word

Word: mercenary

Definition: motivated solely by money or gain; N.


Sentences Containing 'mercenary'

I should be sorry to think our friend mercenary.''
``Pray, my dear aunt, what is the difference in matrimonial affairs, between the mercenary and the prudent motive?
Last Christmas you were afraid of his marrying me, because it would be imprudent; and now, because he is trying to get a girl with only ten thousand pounds, you want to find out that he is mercenary.''
He shall be mercenary, and she shall be foolish.''
His attentions to Miss King were now the consequence of views solely and hatefully mercenary; and the mediocrity of her fortune proved no longer the moderation of his wishes, but his eagerness to grasp at anything.
Oh, what a detestable crew they are, these mercenary speculators!''
After the second Persian war, accordingly, the armies of Athens seem to have been generally composed of mercenary troops, consisting, indeed, partly of citizens, but partly, too, of foreigners; and all of them equally hired and paid at the expense of the state.
If they held them by a more precarious tenure, and were liable to be turned out upon every slight disobligation either of the sovereign or of his ministers, it would perhaps be impossible for them to maintain their authority with the people, who would then consider them as mercenary dependents upon the court, in the sincerity of whose instructions they could no longer have any confidence.
'As I have mentioned to Miss Trotwood, I am actuated by no mercenary considerations; few men are less so, I believe; but Mr. Jorkins has his opinions on these subjects, and I am bound to respect Mr. Jorkins's opinions.
I replied, with all due deference to his experience (but with more deference, I am afraid, to his being Dora's father), that perhaps it was a little nonsensical that the Registry of that Court, containing the original wills of all persons leaving effects within the immense province of Canterbury, for three whole centuries, should be an accidental building, never designed for the purpose, leased by the registrars for their Own private emolument, unsafe, not even ascertained to be fire-proof, choked with the important documents it held, and positively, from the roof to the basement, a mercenary speculation of the registrars, who took great fees from the public, and crammed the public's wills away anyhow and anywhere, having no other object than to get rid of them cheaply.
I hurriedly made him a reply to the effect, that I hoped the error into which I had been betrayed by the desperate nature of my love, did not induce him to think me mercenary too?
'It would be better for yourself, and all of us, if you WERE mercenary, Mr. Copperfield--I mean, if you were more discreet and less influenced by all this youthful nonsense.
'When he was waiting to be the object of your munificence, so freely bestowed for my sake, and when I was unhappy in the mercenary shape I was made to wear, I thought it would have become him better to have worked his own way on.
'And when I came to you, that night, to lay down all my load of shame and grief, and knew that I had to tell that, underneath your roof, one of my own kindred, to whom you had been a benefactor, for the love of me, had spoken to me words that should have found no utterance, even if I had been the weak and mercenary wretch he thought me--my mind revolted from the taint the very tale conveyed.
Let it be, in justice, merely said of me, as of a gallant and eminent naval Hero, with whom I have no pretensions to cope, that what I have done, I did, in despite of mercenary and selfish objects, For England, home, and Beauty.
But, if what I told him were true, he was still at a loss how a kingdom could run out of its estate, like a private person.” He asked me, “who were our creditors; and where we found money to pay them?” He wondered to hear me talk of such chargeable and expensive wars; “that certainly we must be a quarrelsome people, or live among very bad neighbours, and that our generals must needs be richer than our kings.” He asked, what business we had out of our own islands, unless upon the score of trade, or treaty, or to defend the coasts with our fleet?” Above all, he was amazed to hear me talk of a mercenary standing army, in the midst of peace, and among a free people.

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::: functional - made for practical use only (without decoration); functioning; Ex. functional modern furniture; CF. functionalism
::: beseech - beg; plead with
::: entail - make necessary; require; necessitate; involve; limit the inheritance of (property) to a specified succession of heirs; Ex. entail A on/upon B
::: oblique - indirect; slanting (deviating from the perpendicular or from a straight line); Ex. oblique reference
::: pachyderm - thick-skinned animal
::: hireling - one who serves for hire (usually used contemptuously); one who works solely for compensation; Ex. hireling politician
::: asinine - stupid; Ex. asinine remarks
::: vestige - trace; remains; Ex. vestiges of some ancient religion
::: devolve - deputize; pass or be passed to others (power, work, or property); Ex. devolve on/upon/to
::: vigilant - watchful; on the alert; watchfully awake; alert to spot danger; N. vigilance