10 Powerful Adjectives You’ll Learn from Wuthering Heights

Reading the Classics

Wuthering Heights, the only book penned by Emily Bronte (at least according to wikipedia), is one of the greatest books ever written. It might get intimidating at first attempt but press on and you’ll discover some of the most beautiful sentences ever written.

Reading the Classics

I’ve been a fan of Anne Bronte, the author of Agnes Grey which inspired this piece I wrote for Island Trotters. This weekend, I gave Emily Bronte a chance. You’ll encounter these adjectives by reading the entire book but if you don’t have enough time – consider this list a cheat.

Use these adjectives to power your written piece – whether it’s for a Facebook status, a comment, or a more accurate description of people you know. I’m sure every logophile would love to collect these 10 powerful adjectives. Let’s begin:

1. avaricious

having or showing an extreme greed for wealth or material gain (avarice: extreme greed for wealth or material gain)

  • I know he couldn’t love a Linton; and yet he’d be quite capable of marrying your fortune and expectations: avarice is growing with him a besetting sin.
  • ..his efforts redoubling the more imminently his avaricious and unfeeling plans were threatened with defeat by death.

2. beneficent

generous or doing good

  • ‘Ah, certainly—I see now: you are the favoured possessor of the beneficent fairy,’ I remarked, turning to my neighbour.

3. churlish

rude and mean-spirited in a surly way

  • ‘Wretched inmates!’ I ejaculated, mentally, ‘you deserve perpetual isolation from your species for your churlish inhospitality.

4. diabolical

extremely evil or very unpleasant, bad or annoying

  • That is the most diabolical deed that ever you did.
  • ‘My amiable lady!’ he interrupted, with an almost diabolical sneer on his face.

5. doleful

expressing sorrow; mournful

  • The instant I listened again, there was the doleful cry moaning on!
  • I sat and thought a doleful time: the clock struck eight, and nine, and still my companion paced to and fro, his head bent on his breast, and perfectly silent, unless a groan or a bitter ejaculation forced itself out at intervals.

6. flighty

not serious or dependable: likely to forget things or to change opinions, plans, etc., without reason

  • The bog-water got into her head, and she would have run home quite flighty; but I fixed her till she came round to her senses.
  • I delivered this message to Mrs. Earnshaw; she seemed in flighty spirits, and replied merrily, ‘I hardly spoke a word, Ellen, and there he has gone out twice, crying.

7. peevish

feeling or showing irritation

  • ’Yes – very foolish: as if I took notice!’ replied Catherine, in a peevish tone. ‘And where is the sense of that?’
  • His peevish reproofs wakened in her a naughty delight to provoke him.

8. ruffian

a strong and violent person (especially a man) who threatens and hurts other people

  • The ruffian kicked and trampled on him, and dashed his head repeatedly against the flags, holding me with one hand, meantime, to prevent me summoning Joseph.
  • ‘Silence!’ said the ruffian. ‘To the devil with your clamour! I don’t want you to speak.’

9. taciturn

temperamentally disinclined to talk

  • They could not every day sit so grim and taciturn; and it was impossible, however ill-tempered they might be, that the universal scowl they wore was their every-day countenance.

10. tyrannical

using power over people in a way that is cruel and unfair

  • When she grew peevish, he became tyrannical.
  • The servants could not bear his tyrannical and evil conduct long.

If you want to read the entire book, here’s the link to the free copy. Enjoy this gothic fiction with a cup of coffee. Once you’re done, do share with me the words you love about it.

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