audience

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AUDIENCE. A hearing. It is usual for the executive of a country to whom a minister has been sent, to give such minister an audience. And after a minister has been recalled, au audience of leave usually takes place.

References in classic literature ?
They grew frightened, sitting thus and facing their own apprehensions and a callous, tobacco-smoking audience.
I was anxious, however, that the way might also be opened for me to speak directly to a representative Southern white audience.
Well, the lion-tamer's big play to the audience was putting his head in a lion's mouth.
First, let all humans inform themselves of the inevitable and eternal cruelty by the means of which only can animals be compelled to perform before revenue-paying audiences.
Peele and Greene were University men who wrote partly for Court or academic audiences, partly for the popular stage.
Again, when lovers are coming forth, soft music often conducts them on the stage, either to soothe the audience with the softness of the tender passion, or to lull and prepare them for that gentle slumber in which they will most probably be composed by the ensuing scene.
Even Genevieve felt that there was something irresistibly funny in the remark, and the relief of the audience was communicated to her; yet she felt sick and faint, and was overwrought with horror at what she had seen and was seeing.
At another, she was to stop, toss her head, and look pertly at the audience -- she did it.
This brought the lecturer to the great ladder of animal life, beginning low down in molluscs and feeble sea creatures, then up rung by rung through reptiles and fishes, till at last we came to a kangaroo-rat, a creature which brought forth its young alive, the direct ancestor of all mammals, and presumably, therefore, of everyone in the audience.
I do not see how an actor can forget himself and portray hot passion before a cold still audience.
They are few in number, but it is a choice audience, a lettered audience.
To Maggie and the rest of the audience this was transcendental realism.