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English citations of ennui

  • 1907, Robert Chambers, chapter 6, in The Younger Set[1]:
    “I don't mean all of your friends—only a small proportion—which, however, connects your circle with that deadly, idle, brainless bunch—the insolent chatterers at the opera, [] the speed-mad fugitives from the furies of ennui, the neurotic victims of mental cirrhosis, … !”
  • 1934Cole Porter, I Get a Kick out of You
    My story is much too sad to be told, / but practically everything / leaves me totally cold.
    The only exception I know is the case, / when I’m out on a quiet spree, / fighting vainly the old ennui,
    and I suddenly turn and see, / your fabulous face.
  • 1956Arthur C. Clarke, The City and the Stars, p 44
    Sympathy, for one whose loneliness must be even greater than his own; an ennui produced by ages of repetition; and an impish sense of fun—these were the discordant factors that prompted Khedron to act.
  • 1961Henry Miller, Tropic of Cancer
    Everything is endured – disgrace, humiliation, poverty, war, crime, ennui – in the belief that overnight something will occur, a miracle, which will render life tolerable.
  • 1990Terry Pratchett, Eric, p 165
    Now and again screams of ennui rose from between the potted plants, but mainly there was the terrible numbing silence of the human brain being reduced to cream cheese from the inside out.
  • 1997Terrance Dicks, The Eight Doctors, p 256
    It was also known as ennui, the megrims, the blues, or the black dog. But whatever the name, the symptoms were always the same: listlessness, boredom, a sense that life was ultimately meaningless and futile, without point or purpose.
  • 1999Brian Greene, The Elegant Universe, p 139
    The success of Green and Schwarz finally trickled down even to first-year graduate students, and an electrifying sense of being on the inside of a profound moment in the history of physics displaced the previous ennui.
  • 2005Neil Strauss, The Game, p 59
    Women are sick of generic guys asking the same generic questions: "So where are you from?... What do you do for work?" With our patterns, gimmicks, and routines, we were barroom heroes, saving the female of the species from certain ennui.