out of sheer good-temper

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chong lee

Senior Member
The quote is from the story "Fate" by H. H. Munro.

What does it mean "out of sheer good-temper" ?

Thank you.

"It would be more than awkward," said Rex; "it would be a tragedy. All the same, it would be extremely amusing to bring it off. Fancy awaking in the morning with about three hundred pounds standing to one's credit. I should go and clear out my hostess's pigeon-loft before breakfast out of sheer good-temper."
  • PaulQ

    Senior Member
    English - England
    This is another phrase that Saki uses as a joke: the real phrase is "out of sheer bad temper" = "maliciously motivated by pure bad-temper."

    When he heard the news, he was furious! He smashed a cup out of sheer bad temper."

    Saki uses "out of sheer good-temper" in contrast to what we expect, as we never usually say this because it seems as if someone is acting maliciously because of being in a good temper - hence the humour.
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