1. "cigar, and walked up and down before the house, a portly,"
- Sinclair Lewis, Babbitt
2. "He was quite portly, with a profusion of gray hair, and small blue eyes which age had robbed of much of their brightness but none of their penetration."
- Kate Chopin, The Awakening
3. "...they were no more than steaks served up to portly politicians who controlled the personnel departments of the TV stations. (Showgirls in Italy)"
- Tobias Jones, Death of a Showgirl
4. "Before the first workout, Joe Schultz, the manager (he’s out of the old school, I think, because he looks like he’s out of the old school—short, portly, bald, ruddy-faced, twinkly eyed), stopped by while I was having a catch. How you feeling, Jim? he asked. I wonder what he meant by that."
- Jim Bouton, Ball Four
5. "Hooves clomping over the whitewashed planks, Doren sprinted along the boardwalk after Rondus, a portly satyr with butterscotch fur and horns that curved away from each other. Puffing hard, Rondus cut through a gazebo and started down the stairs to the field. Only a few steps behind, Doren went airborne and slammed into the heavyset satyr. Together they pitched violently forward into the grass, staining their skin green."
- Brandon Mull, Grip of the Shadow Plague
6. "Bantams in Pine-Woods" Chieftain Iffucan of Azcan in caftan Of tan with henna hackles, halt! Damned universal cock, as if the sun Was blackamoor to bear your blazing tail. Fat! Fat! Fat! Fat! I am the personal. Your world is you. I am my world. You ten-foot poet among inchlings. Fat! Begone! An inchling bristles in these pines, Bristles, and points their Appalachian tangs, And fears not portly Azcan nor his hoos."
- Quote by Wallace Stevens
7. "... Such a scribe you pay and praise for putting life in stones, Fire into fog, making the past your world. There's plenty of 'How did you contrive to grasp The thread which led you through this labyrinth? How build such solid fabric out of air? How on so slight foundation found this tale, Biography, narrative?' or, in other words, How many lies did it require to make The portly truth you here present us with?"
- Quote by Robert Browning
8. "The portly Italian chief never talked much. Though he had played the royal baby at the crossing-the-line ceremony, he was the oldest man on the ship at forty-three and had little in common with boys twenty and more years his junior. Serafini was an immigrant from the Old Country whose Navy service dated to World War I. When Pearl Harbor was attacked, he had left a well-paying job in the Philadelphia Navy Yard and reenlisted despite both exceeding the age limit and his status as father of two. Serafini felt that he owed a debt of gratitude to the United States."
- James D. Hornfischer, The Last Stand of the Tin Can Sailors: The Extraordinary World War II Story of the U.S. Navy's Finest Hour
9. "books standing up and other books lying down on top of them; plump, resplendent foreign books stretching themselves comfortably, and other wretched books that peered at you from cramped and crowded conditions, lying like illegal immigrants crowded on bunks aboard ship. Heavy, respectable books in gold-tooled leather bindings, and thin books bound in flimsy paper, splendid portly gentlemen and ragged, shabby beggars, and all around and among and behind them was a sweaty mass of booklets, leaflets, pamphlets, offprints, periodicals, journals, and magazines, that noisy crowd that always congregates around any public square or marketplace."
- Amos Oz, A Tale of Love and Darkness
10. "There's Ireland for you now, McGlynn, all of it. Unending rain rattling the windows, and inside a kindly woman boasting about her clerical relations, and two men drinking whiskey, and outside the rest of the world. If Michelangelo painted the Resurrection on her smoky ceiling she wouldn't give it a look or him a thank-you if her portly cousin His Reverence were within miles of the place. Once upon a time we exported scholars and culture to the Continent. Now we export nothing but beasts and priests, God help us."
- Quote by Val Mulkerns