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Use back-against-the-wall in a sentence

Definition of back against the wall:

  • (noun) A very difficult situation with no beneficial options available for action.

Sentence Examples:

Then she made out a dapper olive-skinned fellow sitting with his back against the wall in such a position of complete relaxation as only a Mexican is capable of assuming.

The boy staggered back against the wall; then with a bound he snatched a sword from the hand of one of the troopers, and before the officer had time to recoil or throw up his hands, he smote him with all his force across the face.

They crawled into the hollow, matted the vines carefully in front of them to guard against a slip or an incautious step, and then the three lay back against the wall, feeling an immense relief.

I recall stumbling over dead bodies, of having a wounded man clutch at my legs, of facing that mob with whirling gun stock until the last fugitive was safely behind me, and then being hurled back against the wall by sudden rush.

The others pounded him unmercifully, driving his head back against the wall.

Shaking out the folds of her gown, she leaned her back against the wall, and pointed with a finger on which were some trumpery rings.

Frank Sullivan with his hat off, his arms crossed, and his back against the wall, presenting a dauntless front to the gesticulations and threats of an exceedingly enraged young man with red hair, who was abusing him furiously.

With a bitter groan I tottered back against the wall, while the cold dew stood on my brow, and my limbs trembled under me.

She relaxed her hold and tottered back against the wall.

I tried to scramble on to a ledge of the wainscoting, hanging on by the fastening of the shutters with my back against the wall, in such a position that my feet could not be visible.

Then it staggered back against the wall, stood for a moment muttering and passing its hand aimlessly over its poor ruined head, and finally collapsed into a shapeless rum-smelling heap and slept once more.

The girls used always to stand in class with their arms around each other and their heads leaned together, as they swayed back and forth and rattled over the words of the page; and the boys leaned back against the wall, usually standing on one leg and sticking the other foot up on the wall behind them.

The scout watched nobody and nothing with great care, looked about him pleasantly, inquired for the whiskey, threw aside hat and gloves, sat down, leaning the chair back against the wall, and talked with artful candor.

Leaning back against the wall, he watched the picture, gaining courage with familiarity, and unconsciously a little gasp of regret parted his lips as the waltz crashed to a finish and the dancers moved in a body toward the tables and the bars.

The big woman refilled the lantern and hung it on a peg in the wall of the cave; then she took up her post near the square door leading to the underground passage, her throne an upturned whiskey barrel, her back against the wall of the cave.

For he did talk to him, and the conversation was just as plain to me, tilted back against the wall, out of the sun, waiting for my cutlets and coffee, as if I had been a dog myself, and understood each word of it.

The old sweepers, who had not quite reached the bottom, stood back against the wall for safety's sake until all these had passed, then they kept on their careful way, the crowd passing them by as if they were caught in an eddy of the stream.

He snatched it up, and set his back against the wall, with a white face and a heart beating heavily and tumultuously, but with courage steeled to meet the coming encounter.

Another day, she placed the point of a very sharp sword against the hollow of the throat, just below the epiglottis, and, standing with her back against the wall, called on them to push the sword.

Exclaimed the frightened Frenchman, and, lifting both hands, he fell back against the wall.

The speaker occupied a chair tilted back against the wall, his feet on the rungs, a cigarette smoldering between his lips in open contempt of the regulations of the Fire Department and all other admonitions of ordinary common-sense.

The boy had sidled round with his back against the wall, and stood there with his left elbow up and his fists half clenched.

Taylor, as he leaned back against the wall and thrust his thumbs into the armholes of his vest.

Then she sat down close to a hibachi, her back against the wall.

He stared at the place where the rat had disappeared as if bewildered, then rose, placed the table back against the wall, secured the packet, and put it into his pocket.

He arose now, setting his chair back against the wall with preoccupied precision.

The sentinel at the door was not in view, and Scott, making a spring, seized a sword, which he quickly drew from the scabbard, and, placing his back against the wall in the narrow hall, defied his assailants.

The girl drew a long, quavering breath and leaned back against the wall of the bunk, closing her eyes.

As his feet struck the ground the slight shock sent a pain through his head that wrung a low cry from him, and for a moment he leaned with his back against the wall, almost overcome again by the sickening dizziness.

Leaning back against the wall, I stared at his personage with a dreadful fixity, for I counted him the figment of a disarranged mind.

She shrank back against the wall as he passed her, with his fine old face illumined as from some light within.

There was a cleared space in the corner by the roulette table, and here, his chair tipped back against the wall and a glass of whiskey in front of him, sat a sufficiently strange specimen of humanity.

Her manger was full of fresh-cut grass; and half-buried in this grass, at one end of the manger, with her back against the wall, sat Annie, holding one of the ears of the hornless Brownie with one hand and stroking the creature's nose with the other.

The nun stood erect now, though still leaning back against the wall, and she had hidden her hands under her scapular.

With some difficulty, as his French was very little better than his German, he ordered supper, and then lighting a cigarette, leaned back against the wall and looked around to see if he could discover any English or Americans.

When I sat at work I half faced a deep, upholstered chair which stood at the end of my table, its high back against the wall.

Tigerish now, as though I held a rabid dog, I thrust him back against the wall, and there rigidly held him fast.

Settling himself cross-legged on the floor, his back against the wall, he related how, after tracking a panther all day, he had slipped while going down a steep bank and losing his footing had plunged to the bottom.

Rushing to the building, it perceived the lightning rod, clambered up with inconceivable agility, grasped the shutter, which was thrown fully back against the wall, and, by its means, swung itself directly upon the headboard of the bed.

Ben Bradford sat on a chair tipped back against the wall, with his thumbs thrust through the armholes of his corduroy vest.

He had sat, the center of an appreciative group, in the corner of the big office, well away from the roaring wood fire, his chair tilted back against the wall, his hat on the back of his head, spouting entertainment in an uninterrupted stream.

On the porch an old cattleman sat slouched in a chair tilted back against the wall, a run-down heel of his boot hitched in the rung.

He fell back against the wall, a groan coming from his parched throat.

The corridor had a purpose, after all; and the door at the end was probably secured by a concealed spring of some sort which Drake must have unwittingly pressed when he flung himself back against the wall.

She looked back, down the wide graveled way, through the gate, where the gate-keeper sat, tipped back against the wall on his stool, to the shop of the money-changer's opposite.

It had been set back against the wall where it properly belonged, and the candelabrum removed.

Through a narrow passage and up narrow stairs she blundered, involved in ignorance and darkness, until a streak of light ran across her path and she almost fell into a room where Miriam stood with her back against the wall.

When I sat at work I half-faced a deep, upholstered chair which stood at the end of my table, its high back against the wall.

His pink, cherubic face turned saffron, and he shrank back against the wall.

He did not drop, but staggered back against the wall; and so he stood there, crippled of old and now wounded to death, but so fierce a human tiger that his very looks struck dismay into this gang of professional fighters.

Finding one of my chests had been left in the officers' quarters, and that it would probably be knocked to pieces by the shells, I asked the mulatto, who still sat back against the wall, apparently asleep, to bear a hand and help me bring it out.

The man swore at him in bad German and Renwick drew back against the wall, sure that the game was up, until he realized that the fellow was only cursing because he was almost, if not quite as much startled as Renwick.

He falls back against the wall, staring stupefied at the picture before him.

Scott gaped violently, and seemed to be sick; but his contortions ended in his falling asleep, with his head tipped back against the wall.

As the door crashed in, they were suddenly hurled back against the walls of the corridor, as though by an explosion, the lanterns were extinguished, and they found themselves in utter silence and darkness.

Brett tottered back against the wall, let his breath out in a harsh sigh.

She has twisted her ankle on the rough stones, and now, when she tries to move, she cannot, so she crouches back against the wall and waits for the help that she is sure is coming in an agony that is fast merging into unconsciousness.

The magic of music sobered every face; the women looked older and more careworn, the men slouched sullenly in their chairs, or leaned back against the wall.

As he watched, shrinking back against the wall, the grayness deepened, took the form of a man.

When we first set eyes upon him the man was leaning back against the wall of the ale-house, looking defiantly at John Broad, the constable, who stood by him, and at Geoffrey Scales, the landlord, who stood behind Broad.

The handful of men was forced back against the wall by sheer weight of numbers, but they struck out manfully with their fists, with chairs, and with their feet, with any object that came to hand, and men went down with bleeding heads.

Then, instinctively, although it was too late, he threw up one big shoulder to protect his face before he was lifted and hurled crashing back against the wall by the impact of the heavy hoofs that catapulted out of the blackness.

She fell back against the wall with shriek after shriek of laughter, while I, horrified at this sudden hysterical attack, rushed to the bell to summon help.

A moment later they had opened it and passed out, sedate, mournful, unhurried; and the boy found that in some way he could not understand the light had gone with them, and he was standing with his back against the wall in almost total darkness.

Often, as the service proceeded, a faint smile of derision curved her lips; but from her seat in the obscure corner she had chosen she could see a thin, dark face and a stooping figure, and could lean back against the wall with a sense of repose.

A neat little man with cheery, rosy face, clean-shaven, and with a mass of curly hair tinged with gray hanging about his forehead, was seated upon a chair tipped back against the wall, playing a violin with great vigor and unmistakable delight.

Unlocked, unbolted, not even latched, the door flung wide at the first touch, and whirled crashing back against the wall; the crew of the battering ram, braced for a shock, fell sprawling across the threshold.

He teetered, almost lost his balance and fell back against the wall.

Somebody fetched him a stool, and he sat down outside the gate with his back against the wall, whilst the women sympathized volubly, arms akimbo.

The crowd, mostly sheep-herders and small grangers, sat or stood back against the wall, afraid to move.

Down one of the dimly illumined angles of the great stairway a white figure darted, then paused, abashed, crouching back against the wall at sight of us advancing.

It had part of a roof overhead, and seemed as likely to suit my purpose as any other of the dilapidated group, so I brought my cycle in, flattened a square yard or two of nettles, and sat down on the floor with my back against the wall.

What was my surprise to find all the iron window shutters, which ever since I could remember had been turned back against the wall (and each caught there with a screw catch) fitted into the window frames!

He set his chair back against the wall and watched and listened, a veritable sense of hypnotism creeping over his senses.

He caught up both the boy's hands and pushed him, struggling madly, back against the wall to slap his face, when a froth of blood stained Fred's lips, and he fell fainting; just at that minute Blackburn stepped into the room.

The touch and the voice seemed to galvanize the prisoner, who started upright, gazing wildly at his son, and then shrank back against the wall with his hands outstretched to keep him off.

This he unlocked, and threw back to admit the pair to a square entry, beyond which was another door, of iron, painted stone color, and this rattled and creaked as it was unlocked and pushed back against the wall.

Napier caught again that animal-like gleam of bared teeth as Carl Pforzheim writhed across the table for his pistol, saw again the gush of scarlet after the figure turned, met the knife, and fell back against the wall.

The door ahead of him, a heavy, cumbersome affair, opened inwards toward him, and was now swung full back against the wall, but if the evidence of that iron loop on the door jamb could be trusted, the door was equipped with a massive bolt.

A Mexican squatted on his spurs, back against the wall, and twanged a fandango on a battered guitar.

"All right, general," said Stewart, and settled back against the wall, completely, ineffably happy.

The door blew back against the wall, and he saw nothing but a gaping jaw, from the threshold up to the lintel.

When she came back into the kitchen once more, the children were safely tucked in bed, and her husband was seated by the kitchen door with his chair tipped back against the wall, smoking his evening pipe.

Chairs would be misplaced, tables that had been in the middle of the room would be shoved back against the wall.

The landlord had felt it, for he had put on his coat; so had a man with a dyed mustache and heavy red face, whom I had left tipped back against the wall, and who was now raking out the ashes with a poker.

Henry took a sly peep into the hut when we first arrived, and he declared that there was nothing inside, save some squared logs, which were placed back against the walls, and which he supposed were intended for seats.

The doctor staggered back against the wall, utterly dejected.

Nathan turned to the lieutenant, who, with a blanched face, had shrunk back against the wall.

It had been a blow for him, but he had taken it pluckily with his back against the wall.

The young man then left me, as I have said, and taking a good position near the entrance door to the adjoining room, I leaned back against the wall, and awaited my summons.

I retraced my steps very slowly until I came opposite to the window, and then, so great was the revulsion of my feeling that I reeled back against the wall, my heart jerking, my whole strength gone from me.

He crouched back against the wall, hugging his arms against his breast, and looking from Gray to Harding with a wild agonized entreaty in his eyes.

Then he sank back against the wall, moving his mouth spasmodically.

The night attendant was drowsing in a large wooden chair tilted back against the wall in the narrow runway which formed the entrance to the garage.

Those wavering moments were useful in giving us breathing space from the assaults, and at length having failed, as we desired, to get into the bathroom, we drove him back against the wall at the far end of the room.

I planted my back against the wall, and our host wittily rescued us from the dilemma, by saying, he was the wickedest, and would walk out first, then C. followed, and I went last.

If people don't dodge and scrooge back against the wall they'll get slashed too.

At my words his captors forced him back against the wall, redoubling their grip upon him.

A metallic track ended just in front of the seat; following back, his eye caught the outline of a kind of lectern, now pushed back against the wall of the cell, with spaces below the reading flat and handles attached.

Crashing into the door head first, they sent it swinging back against the wall and followed it, bumping down the two steps still locked together.