Careful Words

wilderness (n.)

  God sifted a whole nation that he might send choice grain over into this wilderness.

William Stoughton (1631-1701): Election Sermon at Boston, April 29, 1669.

Oh for a lodge in some vast wilderness,

Some boundless contiguity of shade,

Where rumour of oppression and deceit,

Of unsuccessful or successful war,

Might never reach me more.

William Cowper (1731-1800): The Task. Book ii. The Timepiece. Line 1.

  Oh that I had in the wilderness a lodging-place of wayfaring men!

Old Testament: Jeremiah ix. 2.

O Love! in such a wilderness as this.

Thomas Campbell (1777-1844): Gertrude of Wyoming. Part iii. Stanza 1.

Mastering the lawless science of our law,—

That codeless myriad of precedent,

That wilderness of single instances.

Alfred Tennyson (1809-1892): Aylmer's Field.

A wilderness of sweets.

John Milton (1608-1674): Paradise Lost. Book v. Line 294.

  One thorn of experience is worth a whole wilderness of warning.

James Russell Lowell (1819-1891): Among my Books. First Series. Shakespeare Once More.