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Power Practice

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Title: Power Practice


1
Power Practice for use with Vocabulary Power Plus
for the New SAT
Book Three 21 Lessons 315 Words
2
Introduction to Vocabulary WordsBOOK THREE
3
Table of Contents
Introduction
Lesson 1Lesson 2Lesson 3Lesson 4Lesson
5Lesson 6Lesson 7
Lesson 8Lesson 9Lesson 10Lesson 11Lesson
12Lesson 13Lesson 14
Lesson 15Lesson 16Lesson 17Lesson 18Lesson
19Lesson 20Lesson 21
4
The first slide provides the vocabulary word.
Use this to begin thinking about the definition.
Introduction
Contents
5
The first click will reveal a context in which
the word might be used.Infer the definition of
the word by studying its context.
Introduction
Contents
6
A second click provides the definition of the
word.
Introduction
Contents
7
Lesson One
Contents
8
Lesson One
factious
The factious political parties degenerated into
quarreling splinter groups.
adj. causing disagreement syn belligerent
contentious ant cooperative united
Contents
9
Lesson One
ignoble
The ignoble candidate ended his political career
when, upon hearing a loud noise, he shielded
himself behind a child.
adj. dishonorable shameful syn despicable base
ant noble glorious
Contents
10
Lesson One
boor
You are boors and churls, scolded the
frustrated headmaster.
n. a rude or impolite person syn buffoon clown
ant sophisticate
Contents
11
Lesson One
aegis
Louie the Lip squealed on the mob and is now
hidden under the aegis of the witness protection
program.
n. a shield protection syn backing
Contents
12
Lesson One
perspicacity
Endless questions during the press conference
challenged the perspicacity of the CEO.
n. keenness of judgment syn perceptiveness ant
stupidity ignorance
Contents
13
Lesson One
fervent
After barely surviving three days lost in the
mountains, Tim became a fervent supporter of
wilderness survival programs.
adj. eager earnest syn burning passionate
ant apathetic
Contents
14
Lesson One
rectify
Lyndon found it impossible to rectify the
hopeless situation, so he resigned.
v. to correct to make right syn remedy resolve
Contents
15
Lesson One
enervate
The relentless cold enervated Lina so completely
that she just wanted to lie down and sleep in the
snow.
v. to weaken syn devitalize exhaust ant
energize strengthen
Contents
16
Lesson One
besiege
General Sun Tzu advised the young officer, When
you besiege your enemies, always leave them an
escape otherwise, theyll fight for their lives.
v. to overwhelm to surround and attack
Contents
17
Lesson One
ephemeral
Since life is ephemeral, it should be lived to
the fullest every moment.
adj. lasting only a brief time short-lived syn
transient fleeting ant permanent
Contents
18
Lesson One
altruism
From a narrow perspective, altruism can be called
selfish when donors seek publicity for their
giving.
n. a concern for others generosity syn
unselfishness magnanimity ant selfishness
egoism
Contents
19
Lesson One
carrion
After sitting on the road for two days, the deer
had become carrion and only to the vultures was
it fit to eat.
n. decaying flesh
Contents
20
Lesson One
erotic
Placed in public view, the erotic sculpture was
sure to become an object of controversy.
adj. pertaining to sexual love
Contents
21
Lesson One
amorphous
The advertising agency takes an amorphous concept
and transforms it into a real and powerful
product.
adj. shapeless, formless, vague
Contents
22
Lesson One
opulent
The wealthy heir took opulence for granted and
never learned how to support himself financially.
adj. rich, luxurious wealthy
Contents
23
Lesson Two
Contents
24
Lesson Two
impotent
The bodybuilder felt impotent when he used brain,
not brawn.
adj. powerless lacking strength syn
ineffective helpless ant potent powerful
Contents
25
Lesson Two
antithesis
The skilled debater made an opponents point
appear to be the antithesis of what he meant.
n. an exact opposite an opposite extreme syn
converse ant same
Contents
26
Lesson Two
maelstrom
Bobbing helplessly about, their rowboat
approached the raging maelstrom.
n. whirlpool turbulence agitated state of mind
Contents
27
Lesson Two
emendation
Meticulous authors obsess about mistakes and
enjoy making emendation before their books are
printed.
n. a correction syn improvement amendment
Contents
28
Lesson Two
chagrin
Overcome by chagrin, Hortense blushed and backed
out of the room.
n. embarrassment a complete loss of courage
Contents
29
Lesson Two
bauble
Early in the morning, salespeople blanket TV,
pushing the most ostentatious baubles imaginable.
n. a showy but useless thing syn trinket
Contents
30
Lesson Two
diaphanous
Only certain audacious starlets have the nerve to
wear diaphanous dresses for red carpet
appearances.
adj. very sheer and light syn transparent
gossamer ant opaque
Contents
31
Lesson Two
labyrinth
The minotaur, a half-man, half-bull creature,
lurked within the winding passages of the
labyrinth.
n. a complicated network of winding passages a
maze
Contents
32
Lesson Two
gloat
The end caught an easy pass, made it look heroic,
then gloated foolishly at the middle of the
football field.
v. to look at or think about with great
satisfaction syn revel crow
Contents
33
Lesson Two
impediment
Jealousy made Aaron an obvious impediment between
his former girlfriend and the personal trainer.
n. a barrier obstruction syn obstacle
hindrance ant aid
Contents
34
Lesson Two
bestial
Rage transformed the losing team into bestial
rabble.
adj. savage brutal syn brutish vile cruel
ant humane kind
Contents
35
Lesson Two
effete
A former United States Vice President called the
media an effete corps of impudent snobs.
adj. worn out barren syn exhausted spent and
sterile ant vital vigorous
Contents
36
Lesson Two
shard
The super villain threw a compact car through the
plate glass window of the coffeehouse, sending
shards flying in all directions.
n. a fragment
Contents
37
Lesson Two
bland
The critic listened to the tired, bland rhythms
of the band and declared the group a celebration
of the mediocre.
adj. mild tasteless dull syn smooth agreeable
ant exciting thrilling
Contents
38
Lesson Two
nihilism
Novelist Victor Hugo said that nihilism has no
substance because there is no such thing as
nothingness everything is something.
n. a total rejection of established laws
Contents
39
Lesson Three
Contents
40
Lesson Three
pedestrian
Stan did all he could to hype the essay, but he
delivered only a pedestrian and unsatisfying
result.
adj. ordinary or dull syn commonplace mediocre
ant imaginative compelling
Contents
41
Lesson Three
bona fide
Although the team put forth a bona fide effort,
they suffered their eighth straight loss.
adj. in good faith syn legitimate genuine ant
fraudulent phony
Contents
42
Lesson Three
adventitious
Adventitious nostalgia and patriotism have made
the Gettysburg Address more famous than it was
when Lincoln first gave it.
adj. accidental nonessential syn incidental
Contents
43
Lesson Three
fecund
Gwens fecund imagination has produced many books
that have brought critical and popular acclaim.
adj. fertile productive syn prolific ant
sterile
Contents
44
Lesson Three
deviate
He thought in a linear fashion, with no room to
deviate.
v. to turn aside from a course to stray syn
digress
Contents
45
Lesson Three
obfuscate
For a dedicated writer, it is a serious error to
obfuscate, not clarify, with language.
v. to confuse to bewilder syn muddle obscure
ant clarify elucidate
Contents
46
Lesson Three
impale
Punji sticks are very sharp bamboo stakes placed
in holes to impale unsuspecting soldiers.
v. to pierce with a sharp stake through the body
Contents
47
Lesson Three
extenuate
In law, circumstances that extenuate a crime may
call for less punishment.
v. to lessen seriousness by providing partial
excuses
Contents
48
Lesson Three
parochial
Brets parochial notions about art and history
disappeared after he visited several museums.
adj. local narrow limited syn provincial
narrow-minded ant universal catholic
Contents
49
Lesson Three
glower
Although he often seemed to glower, he claimed to
be smiling in his heart.
v. to stare angrily syn frown scowl ant grin
Contents
50
Lesson Three
edify
Always edify, never stupefy, the veteran teacher
advised.
v. improve someone morally
Contents
51
Lesson Three
ambiguous
The ambiguous orders misled the platoon into a
minefield.
adj. open to more than one interpretation syn
unclear uncertain vague ant explicit definite
Contents
52
Lesson Three
cataclysm
An island volcano, Krakatoa, exploded in a
cataclysm that produced a tidal wave 120 feet
high.
n. a violent change syn disaster catastrophe
ant triumph boon
Contents
53
Lesson Three
optimum
After tasting the bears bowls of porridge,
Goldilocks found one that was the optimum
temperature.
adj. best most favorable ideal
Contents
54
Lesson Three
importune
Her friends seldom refused when Kim importune
them for a ride to school.
v. to ask persistently to beg syn appeal badger
Contents
55
Lesson Four
Contents
56
Lesson Four
celibate
When training, many boxers remain celibate to
focus their attention and energies on the
forthcoming fight.
adj. abstaining from intercourse unmarried
Contents
57
Lesson Four
fortuitous
Fortuitous moments affect lives as certainly as
planned actions.
adj. happening by chance or accident syn
accidental unexpected ant premeditated
intentional
Contents
58
Lesson Four
recapitulate
Arthur slept through class and hoped a friend
would recapitulate the lecture accurately.
v. to summarize to repeat briefly
Contents
59
Lesson Four
perfunctory
He was a perfunctory friend but an attentive
husband.
adj. done without care in a routine fashion syn
indifferent offhand ant diligent attentive
Contents
60
Lesson Four
baroque
With elaborate phrases and language, the author
constructed a novel of baroque proportions.
adj. overly decorated syn ornate ant simple
Contents
61
Lesson Four
hedonism
Matt abandoned himself to a life of
self-indulgent hedonism.
n. pursuit of pleasure, especially of the senses
Contents
62
Lesson Four
obloquy
Escaped Nazi war criminals incurred so much
obloquy that government agents spent lifetimes
hunting them down.
n. strong disapproval a bad reputation resulting
from public criticism syn censure rebuke ant
acclaim praise
Contents
63
Lesson Four
debacle
The peace talks became an utter debacle when an
insult prompted General Reynolds to strike the
opposing commander with a folding chair.
n. a complete failure a total collapse syn
calamity catastrophe ant success triumph
Contents
64
Lesson Four
quasi-
Aimee functioned as a quasi-director in the
amateur theater group.
adj. resembling seeming half
Contents
65
Lesson Four
besmirch
During a fight-club rumble, Sully fell into the
gutter and besmirched his white tuxedo.
v. to make dirty to stain syn soil sully
smear ant cleanse
Contents
66
Lesson Four
imperative
The squad leaders rising voice conveyed an
absolute, imperative urgency.
adj. extremely necessary vitally important
Contents
67
Lesson Four
sacrosanct
The magazine asserted that no topic or person
would be sacrosanct or ruled out as a subject for
satire.
adj. extremely holy syn divine angelic
Contents
68
Lesson Four
sadistic
The constitution exists, in part, to keep
dictators or kings from performing sadistic acts
against citizens.
adj. deriving pleasure from inflicting pain on
others syn barbarous perverse ant civilized
humane
Contents
69
Lesson Four
demeanor
Project a calm demeanor, and never let them see
you sweat.
n. behavior manner of conducting oneself syn
deportment
Contents
70
Lesson Four
facetious
With facetious intent, the professor asked the
yawning student if he would like to take a nap
before the exam began.
adj. comical jocular flippant syn joking
witty jocose ant solemn serious
Contents
71
Lesson Five
Contents
72
Lesson Five
fop
The pretentious fop brought three suitcases full
of clothes for a simple overnight business trip.
n. an excessively fashion-conscious man syn dandy
Contents
73
Lesson Five
imprecation
Standing sternly in the pulpit, the preacher
hurled imprecations at the stunned congregation.
n. a curse syn condemnation anathema ant
blessing
Contents
74
Lesson Five
non sequitur
The professor of logic detested false conclusions
and therefore banned non sequiturs from her
classroom.
n. something that does not logically follow syn
fallacy misconception
Contents
75
Lesson Five
sanguine
Arlenes perpetually sanguine outlook made some
people wonder if she lived in the real world.
adj. cheerful optimistic
Contents
76
Lesson Five
bowdlerize
After Dr. Thomas Bowdler expurgated Shakespeare,
many angry critics began asserting that to censor
a book is to bowdlerize it.
v. to remove offensive passages of a play, novel,
etc. syn censor
Contents
77
Lesson Five
impair
Bigots allows their bias to impair their sense of
justice.
v. to weaken to cause to become worse syn
damage deteriorate ant enhance
Contents
78
Lesson Five
panegyric
The author didnt write an analytical biography
he threw together a mere panegyric.
n. an expression of praise syn tribute
extolment ant denunciation
Contents
79
Lesson Five
quandary
Rob faced the pleasant quandary of choosing to go
to the movies or play video games.
n. a puzzling situation a dilemma syn
predicament
Contents
80
Lesson Five
ebullient
A noisily ebullient crowd kept the visiting team
from hearing the signals.
adj. enthusiastic syn exuberant lively ant
dejected dispirited
Contents
81
Lesson Five
deference
Deference must be given only to those who have
earned it.
n. respect consideration
Contents
82
Lesson Five
carnal
Before being overrun and executed, the emperor
spent most of his time at his summer palace,
feasting and engaging in other carnal pleasures.
adj. relating to physical appetite, especially
sexual syn erotic ant chaste modest
Contents
83
Lesson Five
nebulous
Modern life can oppress us with a nameless and
nebulous feeling of dread.
adj. hazy vague uncertain syn cloudy
indistinct obscure ant distinct precise
Contents
84
Lesson Five
rakish
The Dapper Don flashed his patented rakish
smile as the feds frog-marched him off to jail.
adj. dashingly stylish and confident syn dapper
jaunty ant slovenly disheveled
Contents
85
Lesson Five
elegy
In deference to the mourners at graveside, the
pastor kept his elegy eloquent but short.
n. a sad or mournful poem syn dirge lament
Contents
86
Lesson Five
pedantic
The pedantic teacher paraded his knowledge of
tiny facts and ignored the important ideas in the
book.
adj. tending to show off ones learning syn
bookish
Contents
87
Lesson Six
Contents
88
Lesson Six
antipathy
First comes antipathy, and then revenge.
n. an intense dislike syn aversion ant affinity
Contents
89
Lesson Six
elucidate
To elucidate a point, the professor stated it in
a variety of ways.
v. to make clear syn explain clarify ant
obscure
Contents
90
Lesson Six
imminent
He gets here when he gets here, said Bruce,
stoically expecting the imminent arrival of the
bounty hunter.
adj. likely to happen threatening syn
impending approaching ant distant delayed
Contents
91
Lesson Six
banal
The writer was so afraid of being banal that he
resorted to strange and baroque language.
adj. common, ordinary syn trivial insipid ant
original fresh
Contents
92
Lesson Six
obdurate
Remaining obdurate in the face of unfair
criticism, the ambassador completed the effective
plan.
adj. stubborn hardhearted syn inflexible
obstinate ant compliant amenable
Contents
93
Lesson Six
peruse
Dont just skim the chapterperuse it carefully.
v. to read carefully scrutinize
Contents
94
Lesson Six
bedlam
It was bedlam in the cafeteria, with food fights
breaking out at tables around the room.
n. a noisy uproar a scene of wild confusion syn
mayhem chaos
Contents
95
Lesson Six
affluence
Willa made sure her children knew that their
familys affluence had not come easily their
wealth had required two generations of toil and
sacrifice, from the coal mines to the board room.
n. wealth richness syn fortune
Contents
96
Lesson Six
scurrilous
Scurrilous tactics helped Ethan steal the
election.
adj. coarsely abusive vulgar syn indecent ant
respectable
Contents
97
Lesson Six
parody
Al likes to create parodies of popular songs by
replacing the original lyrics with his own
humorous lyrics.
n. a work which imitates another in a ridiculous
manner syn caricature burlesque lampoon
Contents
98
Lesson Six
sedulous
Dawns sedulous pursuit of success as a surgeon
required years of patience and uncanny focus.
adj. hard working diligent syn studious
assiduous ant lazy lax
Contents
99
Lesson Six
onerous
The state trooper had the onerous burden of
informing Erics parents that their son would not
be coming home.
adj. burdensome heavy hard to endure syn
crushing distressing
Contents
100
Lesson Six
amoral
With amoral indifference, the killer circled the
room and executed hostages at random.
adj. lacking a sense of right and wrong syn
corrupt evil ant innocent virtuous
Contents
101
Lesson Six
eschew
In from the country, Farmer Brown was determined
to eschew the evil vices of the city.
v. to keep away from to avoid to shun ant
embrace welcome
Contents
102
Lesson Six
denouement
If the build-up of a movie doesnt grab you, you
wont stick around for the denouement.
n. an outcome result syn conclusion
Contents
103
Lesson Seven
Contents
104
Lesson Seven
adroit
On the court, the adroit tennis player made even
the most difficult moves look easy.
adj. skillful clever syn dexterous apt ant
clumsy awkward
Contents
105
Lesson Seven
macroscopic
Professors think they have a macroscopic
understanding of economics, but most people live
day-to-day.
adj. visible to the naked eye ant microscopic
Contents
106
Lesson Seven
fatuous
Fatuous answers to serious questions earned
Archie seriously poor grades.
adj. foolish inane syn silly ant sensible
wise
Contents
107
Lesson Seven
bovine
The crowd moved with a kind of bovine slowness,
ambling across the road and blocking traffic.
adj. pertaining to cows or cattle
Contents
108
Lesson Seven
ferret
Jerry dug into the haystack and ferreted out a
needle.
v. to search or drive out
Contents
109
Lesson Seven
affectation
The fashion police saw through Marilyns
affectation of high-style elegance.
n. a phony attitude pose syn insincerity sham
ant sincerity genuineness
Contents
110
Lesson Seven
knell
Senators sounded the death knell for the
amendment when they voted against it.
n. a sound made by a bell, often rung slowly for
a death or funeral
Contents
111
Lesson Seven
dichotomy
A dichotomy in interpretations of law caused the
judges to render a split decision.
n. a division into two parts
Contents
112
Lesson Seven
callow
The superintendent mistakenly entrusted the care
of the dog to callow and mischievous youths.
adj. young and inexperienced syn immature ant
mature sophisticated
Contents
113
Lesson Seven
laconic
Deputies asked the laconic sheriff if he knew the
way home, and he just said Yep.
adj. using few words short concise syn pithy
taciturn ant verbose loquacious
Contents
114
Lesson Seven
quiddity
Kristina skipped the fluff and penetrated to the
quiddity of the argument.
n. an essential quality syn essence
Contents
115
Lesson Seven
patent
Reporters were looking for thorough answers, but
the caretaker just gave them patent retorts.
adj. evident or obvious syn indisputable
apparent
Contents
116
Lesson Seven
peccadillo
Rosalyn knew how to keep her excusable
peccadilloes in the right perspective.
n. a minor offense a misdeed
Contents
117
Lesson Seven
sagacious
Try not do, or do not there is no try, said
Yoda, a sagacious Jedi master, to Luke Skywalker.
adj. wise having keen perception and sound
judgment syn shrewd intelligent ant obtuse
fatuous
Contents
118
Lesson Seven
rationalize
Unlike other primates, humans can rationalize
their most bizarre behavior.
v. to make an excuse for syn justify
Contents
119
Lesson Eight
Contents
120
Lesson Eight
deride
Cowardice often motivates bullies to deride
others.
v. to ridicule to mock syn scorn ant praise
Contents
121
Lesson Eight
censure
The dean censured the offending students and then
sequestered them from any contact with others.
v. to criticize sharply syn condemn reproach
ant praise applaud
Contents
122
Lesson Eight
gambol
The young lambs gamboled across the meadow.
v. to frolic to romp about playfully syn play
caper rollick
Contents
123
Lesson Eight
immolate
In 17th-century America, some wanted alleged
witches to be immolated by burning them at the
stake.
v. to kill someone as a sacrificial victim,
usually by fire
Contents
124
Lesson Eight
recondite
Students dreaded the idea of plowing through the
recondite novel.
adj. difficult to understand profound
Contents
125
Lesson Eight
martinet
Captain Bligh, a British martinet, dealt extreme
punishments to his ships crew for small offenses.
n. a strict disciplinarian taskmaster
Contents
126
Lesson Eight
quagmire
Bogged down in a military quagmire, the captain
gave the command for a strategic retreat.
n. a swamp a difficult or inextricable situation
Contents
127
Lesson Eight
gibe
The audience gibed at the comedian and sent him
into an obscene rage.
v. to scoff to ridicule syn jeer taunt sneer
ant compliment praise
Contents
128
Lesson Eight
agape
Suddenly, the old lady did a perfect handspring
and left the spectators agape.
adj. open-mouthed surprised agog syn astonished
Contents
129
Lesson Eight
carcinogen
When a certain type of wood dust was discovered
to be a carcinogen, sawmill workers had to begin
wearing respiratory masks.
n. causing cancer
Contents
130
Lesson Eight
olfactory
Many insects have olfactory receptors, nerve
endings that respond to odorous stimuli, on their
antennae.
adj. pertaining to smell
Contents
131
Lesson Eight
imperious
The imperious prosecuting attorney caused the
witness to flinch by moving toward her menacingly.
adj. domineering haughty syn overbearing
arrogant masterful ant servile submissive
Contents
132
Lesson Eight
grotesque
Some of the tribal art depicted grotesque
half-human, half-animal creatures that stalked
the wilderness in search of human prey.
adj. absurd distorted
Contents
133
Lesson Eight
neologism
Most neologism have a short shelf life and fail
to achieve permanent dictionary status.
n. a new word or expression syn coinage
Contents
134
Lesson Eight
hackneyed
Occasionally, every good writer settles for a
hackneyed phrase.
adj. commonplace overused syn trite banal
ant fresh imaginative
Contents
135
Lesson Nine
Contents
136
Lesson Nine
machination
Unwilling to allow his secrets to fall upon enemy
ears, the king imprisoned any servant he
suspected of having heard his political
machinations.
n. an evil design or plan syn scheme plot
Contents
137
Lesson Nine
pejorative
When confronted with different explanations,
cynics enjoy selecting the most pejorative one.
adj. having a negative effect insulting syn
disparaging derogatory ant complimentary
Contents
138
Lesson Nine
harbinger
Behold the robin, a harbinger of spring.
n. an omen or sign syn warning portent
Contents
139
Lesson Nine
nubile
Bertrand blushed when he caught the eye of the
nubile young woman.
adj. suitable for marriage in age and physical
development, referring to a female
Contents
140
Lesson Nine
sapient
Eric decided he was not being appreciated enough
for his sapient and successful approach to life.
adj. wise full of knowledge syn sagacious ant
fatuous inane
Contents
141
Lesson Nine
chimerical
Hoping to find a pot of gold at the end of a
rainbow is a chimerical delusion.
adj. imaginary fantastic syn absurd
illusionary ant practical
Contents
142
Lesson Nine
masochist
The general was a masochist who enjoyed placing
himself and his men in desperate battles.
n. one who enjoys his or her own pain and
suffering
Contents
143
Lesson Nine
finesse
Competing claims tested the arbitrators finesse
in decision-making.
n. diplomacy tact artful management syn skill
cunning ant tactlessness
Contents
144
Lesson Nine
heterogeneous
It was a heterogeneous crowd, angry, vocal, and
representing all demographics.
adj. different dissimilar syn diverse varied
ant homogeneous similar
Contents
145
Lesson Nine
eclectic
With an eclectic approach, Lonnie chose tenets
from all walks of life.
adj. choosing from various sources syn selective
ant narrow
Contents
146
Lesson Nine
grandiose
The actors grandiose gesture, though charitable
and generous, happened to coincide with the
release of her latest film.
adj. impressive showy magnificent syn stately
imposing ant humble
Contents
147
Lesson Nine
raiment
The starlet paraded along the red carpet, wearing
raiment on loan from Givenchy.
n. clothing garments
Contents
148
Lesson Nine
blanch
Decades of laboring in the sun has blanched his
hair.
v. to whiten to make pale
Contents
149
Lesson Nine
hybrid
The dog was a hybrid, otherwise known as a mutt.
n. anything of mixed origin
Contents
150
Lesson Nine
idiosyncrasy
The authors trademark literary idiosyncrasies
amused some and annoyed others.
n. a peculiar personality trait syn
eccentricity quirk
Contents
151
Lesson Ten
Contents
152
Lesson Ten
idolatry
Some pediatricians have accused overprotective
parents of child idolatry.
n. excessive or blind adoration worship of an
object
Contents
153
Lesson Ten
adulterate
By adding water to the wine, the shabby
restaurant adulterated its quality and cheated
the customers.
v. to make impure to contaminate syn taint
corrupt ant refine refined
Contents
154
Lesson Ten
emanate
A steady stream of water emanated from the broken
fire hydrant.
v. to come forth to send forth syn rise emerge
Contents
155
Lesson Ten
garish
Some store window displays are simple and
elegant, but others are garish and trashy.
adj. tastelessly gaudy syn showy glaring
flashy ant sedate conservative
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Lesson Ten
immutable
The aging actress spent thousands on cosmetic
surgery, only to find that the effects of age and
gravity are immutable.
adj. unchangeable fixed syn enduring ant
flexible changeable
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Lesson Ten
diadem
Looking to upgrade her image, the queen had her
diadem encrusted with jewels.
n. a crown
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Lesson Ten
bucolic
Unicorns and griffins frolicked in the bucolic
and verdant landscape.
adj. pertaining to the countryside rural
rustic syn pastoral ant urban
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Lesson Ten
redolent
The crooked politician conducted a campaign
redolent of vice and corruption.
adj. having a pleasant odor suggestive or
evocative syn aromatic ant acrid
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Lesson Ten
impecunious
Despite their impecunious status, the family
lived healthily and happily through foraging and
hunting.
adj. without money penniless syn destitute
indigent ant affluent prosperous
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Lesson Ten
sedition
No self-respecting government allows sedition and
its rebellious methods to go unpunished.
n. rebellion or resistance against the
government syn treachery disloyalty
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Lesson Ten
defile
An immoral act defiles the character of those who
do it and those who let it happen.
v. to pollute to corrupt
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Lesson Ten
gratuitous
Geris directions were helpful, but her
gratuitous details confused the lost travelers,
and they were forced to stop and ask someone else
for directions.
adj. unnecessary or uncalled for
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Lesson Ten
onus
John accepted the onus of explaining why his
group was late.
n. a burden a responsibility syn obligation
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Lesson Ten
impious
Larry joined in the impious laughter at the
bumbling clergyman.
adj. disrespectful toward God syn irreligious
profane ant devout pious
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Lesson Ten
caveat
Remember the buyers caveat if it sounds too
good to be true, it probably is.
n. a warning syn admonition caution
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Lesson Eleven
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Lesson Eleven
elixir
Everyone wants to drink the elixir from the
mythic Fountain of Youth.
n. a supposed remedy for all ailments syn
medicine panacea
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Lesson Eleven
desiccated
His weathered, aged features reminded Nellie of a
desiccated prune.
adj. dried up
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Lesson Eleven
cessation
The cessation of pain was a relief for the
wounded adventurer, but Dirk knew that it was
only because he was going into shock.
n. a stopping a discontinuance syn ceasing end
ant beginning commencement
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Lesson Eleven
juxtapose
To portray a subtle difference in culture, the
photographer juxtaposed a bus driver from
America, who wore a polo shirt and slacks, with a
bus driver from Japan, who wore a fancy uniform
with white gloves.
v. to place side-by-side for comparison syn
measure examine
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Lesson Eleven
kinetic
We live in a kinetic world in which, always,
somewhere, someone is in motion.
adj. pertaining to motion
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Lesson Eleven
garrulous
After days of silence, the old prospector
suddenly turned into a garrulous storyteller.
adj. talkative syn loquacious verbose ant
taciturn
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Lesson Eleven
fetish
The shaman made a fetish of the bear claw, which
was thought to retain the spirit of the animal.
n. an object that receives respect or
devotion syn charm talisman
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Lesson Eleven
scintillate
With witty remarks and fascinating tales, the
raconteur scintillated as keynote speaker.
v. to sparkle to twinkle to sparkle
intellectually
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Lesson Eleven
lachrymose
The undertaker hired a professional mourner who
could fake lachrymose behavior on cue.
adj. tearful, weepy
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Lesson Eleven
fissure
A fissure developed in their previously solid
relationship.
n. an opening a groove a split
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Lesson Eleven
epitome
When looking for the epitome of creative glory,
most playwrights select Shakespeare.
n. a typical example syn embodiment archetype
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Lesson Eleven
languid
The fatigued crossing guard slowly lifted and
lowered a languid arm.
adj. sluggish drooping from weakness syn
listless feeble drooping ant robust vigorous
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Lesson Eleven
delineate
Professor Thompson hinted at and then fully
delineated her plan for the class year.
v. to describe, to depict
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Lesson Eleven
legerdemain
Misdirection is a key component of a magicians
legerdemain.
n. sleight of hand deception
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Lesson Eleven
libertine
The marquis was a notorious libertine who spent
his entire fortune on elaborate parties and
lavish luxuries.
n. one who leads an immoral life syn hedonist
glutton epicurean
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Lesson Twelve
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Lesson Twelve
halcyon
The balloon drifted in the halcyon and cloudless
sky.
adj. calm pleasant syn tranquil unruffled
ant troubled tumultuous
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Lesson Twelve
fastidious
The fastidious writer rarely met her deadlines,
but the magazine was still willing to purchase
her superior articles.
adj. hard to please fussy syn meticulous
exacting ant casual lax
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Lesson Twelve
badinage
Their superficial relationship was comprised
mainly of badinage and frivolous day trips.
n. playful, teasing talk syn chaff joshing
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Lesson Twelve
malapropism
Listen for malapropisms, which are word
confusions, and youll be rewarded with a laugh
or two.
n. a word humorously misused
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Lesson Twelve
garner
After attending several conventions, the comic
book collector had garnered a complete set of his
favorite series.
v. to gather to acquire syn harvest
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Lesson Twelve
kismet
Aaron refused to believe that his low-paying
delivery job was his kismet in life.
n. destiny fate fortune (ones lot in life)
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Lesson Twelve
hegira
The road extended to the horizon for the hegira
of refugees leaving the bombed-out city.
n. flight escape
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Lesson Twelve
paradigm
Dianes thoughtful and accurate biography of
Einstein became the paradigm for subsequent
studies.
n. a model an example
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Lesson Twelve
debauchery
Local residents blamed the casino for the drugs,
prostitution, and general debauchery surrounding
it.
n. corruption self-indulgence syn excess
dissipation
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Lesson Twelve
milieu
Unlike the other professors, Dr. Rowley never
felt at ease in the academic milieu in which he
worked.
n. environment setting
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Lesson Twelve
regress
The decadent society steadily regressed into
anarchy.
v. to move backward
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Lesson Twelve
bilious
The bilious fool erringly blamed and chastised
people for mistakes that others made.
adj. bad tempered cross syn grouchy
cantankerous ant pleasant
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Lesson Twelve
necromancy
After asserting her mastery of necromancy, the
old woman attempted to communicate with the
spirits of the dead.
n. magic, especially that practiced by a
witch syn black magic conjuring
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Lesson Twelve
gumption
Some called it gumption, others called it true
grit, but whatever the settlers motivation, they
endured hardships unimaginable to reach their
destinations.
n. courage and initiative common sense syn
enterprise aggressiveness drive
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Lesson Twelve
blandishment
The scam artists blandishments lowered the
victims defenses enough to get her to donate
money to the bogus charity.
n. flattery syn overpraise bootlicking
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Lesson Thirteen
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Lesson Thirteen
nirvana
Jillian, who had endured a difficult life,
thought that winning the lottery would enable her
to live in a state of nirvana instead, however,
her new wealth brought misery.
n. a condition of great peace or happiness
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Lesson Thirteen
salutary
Elaines strict regimen of diet and exercise had
a salutary effect on her health.
adj. healthful wholesome syn beneficial ant
pernicious
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Lesson Thirteen
despicable
The despicable scheme involved taking in foster
children and using them for sweatshop laborers.
adj. contemptible hateful syn vile base ant
laudable worthy
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Lesson Thirteen
harlequin
In the theater, a harlequin is a clown who
exhibits the nimble grace of an acrobat.
n. a clown
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Lesson Thirteen
empathy
Empathy requires you to walk a mile in someone
elses shoes before trying to understand him or
her.
n. an understanding of anothers feelings syn
appreciation compassion
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Lesson Thirteen
brevity
The newcomer was shocked by the brevity of
mourning after one of the pioneers died on the
trail a one-hour funeral and burial was all the
time the wagons could spare.
n. briefness short duration syn terseness
conciseness ant lengthiness
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Lesson Thirteen
savant
The savant was the worlds foremost physicist,
yet sometimes forgot to wear pants when he left
for work in the morning.
n. a person of extensive learning an eminent
scholar
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Lesson Thirteen
obsequious
Jacques advanced rapidly at the company through
his obsequious flattery of the boss.
adj. excessively submissive or overly
attentive syn servile fawning ant
domineering haughty
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Lesson Thirteen
redundant
Each redundant cluster of mini-malls, each having
essentially the same stores as the other, made
Brennan long for the pristine mountains and
valleys where he had been raised.
adj. repetitious using more words than
needed syn wordy excessive unnecessary ant
essential
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Lesson Thirteen
offal
The offal flowed from the citys old stockyards
and meatpacking plants into the polluted river.
n. garbage waste parts
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Lesson Thirteen
hoi polloi
By lowering his writing standards, the author
hoped to sell more books to the hoi polloi.
n. the common people the masses
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Lesson Thirteen
sentient
Even the least sentient members of the audience
perceived the speakers embarrassment.
adj. conscious capable of feeling or
perceiving syn alert alive cognizant
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Lesson Thirteen
impinge
The rules were constructed so as not to impinge
on anyones ability to earn a top salary.
v. to encroach to trespass syn infringe intrude
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Lesson Thirteen
cataract
As the ice melted, the tiny brook slowly turned
into a roaring cataract.
n. a large waterfall
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Lesson Thirteen
animosity
During an election year, discussing politics is a
sure way to create animosity among friends.
n. Hatred syn ill-will hostility ant
friendliness congeniality
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Lesson Fourteen
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Lesson Fourteen
bombast
The clever speaker provided a mixture of rousing
bombast and quiet persuasion.
n. impressive but meaningless language
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Lesson Fourteen
orthography
By leaving proper orthography to a computerized
spell checker, Sandi was trusting a flawed system.
n. correct spelling
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Lesson Fourteen
paleontology
An expert in paleontology said the remains were
150,000-year-old human skulls.
n. a science dealing with prehistoric life
through the study of fossils
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Lesson Fourteen
recoil
The general public recoiled at the scenes of
brutality that had occurred inside the prison.
v. to retreat to draw back
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Lesson Fourteen
panache
With graceful panache, Gerald removed his coat
and placed it over his shivering girlfriends
shoulders.
n. self-confidence a showy manner syn charisma
spirit
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Lesson Fourteen
saturnine
The saturnine team stared blankly out the bus
windows on the drive home after losing their
championship game by a single point.
adj. gloomy sluggish syn sullen morose ant
genial
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Lesson Fourteen
endemic
The sugar maple tree is endemic to eastern North
America.
adj. confined to a particular country or
area syn native indigenous ant alien foreign
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Lesson Fourteen
mendacious
Though obviously mendacious, James kept friends
entertained with his wildly fictional tales.
adj. lying false deceitful syn duplicitous
ant truthful
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Lesson Fourteen
obviate
Madeline obviated a confrontation by winning her
critics over with laughter.
v. to prevent to get around syn circumvent
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Lesson Fourteen
paroxysm
The mushroom cloud loomed over the horizon, just
miles from the city, and caused a paroxysm of
panic.
n. a sudden outburst a fit syn outburst
commotion
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Lesson Fourteen
aggrandize
Ralph aggrandized his own argument while
belittling his opponents points.
v. 1. to increase the range of to expand 2. To
make appear larger (1) syn enlarge augment
enrich ant decrease diminish (2) syn
exaggerate embellish ant belittle devalue
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Lesson Fourteen
deign
The politician did not deign to speak candidly
and thus lost the election.
v. to lower oneself before an inferior syn
stoop condescend
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Lesson Fourteen
flaunt
If you got it, flaunt it, said the arrogant
athlete.
v. to show off syn boast exhibit ant conceal
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Lesson Fourteen
shibboleth
The disguised Confederate soldier accidentally
used a Southern shibboleth, and the nervous Union
sentry shot him.
n. a word or pronunciation that distinguishes
someone as of a particular group
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Lesson Fourteen
elicit
Peter tried to elicit laughter by telling a
racist joke, but he provoked only disdain.
v. to draw forth to call forth syn evoke
extract ant cover suppress
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Lesson Fifteen
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Lesson Fifteen
orifice
The vent of a volcano is an orifice through which
magma erupts as gasses and lava.
n. mouth opening
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Lesson Fifteen
hallow
Experts hallow the university for its superb
engineering program.
v. to make holy syn bless consecrate ant
desecrate
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Lesson Fifteen
perdition
The preacher breathed fire and brimstone at his
congregation, threatening them with perdition.
n. damnation ruin hell
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Lesson Fifteen
chaff
The book offers a few useful suggestions, but the
rest of it is chaff.
n. worthless matter syn rubbish
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Lesson Fifteen
aesthetic
Lori presented her boyfriends alleged
intellectual and aesthetic values to her
skeptical family.
adj. pertaining to beauty syn artistic ant
displeasing unattractive
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Lesson Fifteen
empirical
Avoiding the easy choice of idle speculation, the
scientist offered solid empirical data.
adj. based on practical experience rather than
theory syn observable ant theoretical
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Lesson Fifteen
germane
When writing essays, keep your points precise,
clear, and germane.
adj. relevant fitting syn appropriate
pertinent suitable ant irrelevant
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Lesson Fifteen
hermetic
The hermetic, steel containers used to store the
radioactive waste are designed to last 20,000
years.
adj. tightly sealed syn airtight
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Lesson Fifteen
meretricious
The authors meretricious writing style masked an
emptiness of content.
adj. attractive in a cheap, flashy way syn
gaudy showy tawdry ant restrained tasteful
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Lesson Fifteen
querulous
Querulous discontent rippled through the audience.
adj. complaining grumbling syn fretful peevish
ant complacent satisfied
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Lesson Fifteen
flaccid
Years of repetitive meetings turned the account
executives strong presentations into flaccid
farces.
adj. flabby syn weak feeble ant solid taut
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Lesson Fifteen
hospice
While backpacking through the Alps, Derek and Kim
encountered a grim hospice in Transylvania.
n. a shelter for travelers, orphans, or the ill
or destitute
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Lesson Fifteen
egregious
So egregious was Marias conduct that she was
banned forever from the chess club.
adj. remarkably bad outrageous syn flagrant
gross ant moderate
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Lesson Fifteen
ratiocinate
Brianna was a night owl, and she loved to
ratiocinate in depth until the wee hours of the
morning.
v. to reason to think
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Lesson Fifteen
foment
Ted preferred to make provocative remarks and
foment a rebellion that he could watch from the
sidelines.
v. to stir up to incite syn instigate arouse
ant quell curb
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Lesson Sixteen
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Lesson Sixteen
salient
It was not easy to find the few salient details
in the authors dull verbiage.
adj. significant conspicuous standing out from
the rest syn important
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Lesson Sixteen
recant
Under pressure from the inquisitor, the young
woman recanted her previous religious beliefs.
v. to withdraw or disavow a statement or opinion
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Lesson Sixteen
jocular
No matter how desperate the circumstances,
Captain Smith maintained his jocular demeanor
with his men.
adj. humorous lighthearted syn joking witty
amusing ant solemn morose
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Lesson Sixteen
palliate
Students sought ways to palliate the boredom of
their confinement in detention hall.
v. to ease to lessen to soothe syn alleviate
excuse ant intensify exacerbate
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Lesson Sixteen
malleable
Ryan held firm convictions, yet his attitude was
still malleable enough to accept changes.
adj. capable of being changed easily shaped syn
workable ant rigid inflexible
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Lesson Sixteen
recreant
The mafia consigliere with the big vocabulary
called the whistle-blower a recreant and a rat.
n. a coward a traitor
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Lesson Sixteen
affinity
Marias affinity for the theater developed during
her first acting experience in high school.
n. an attraction to syn partiality fondness
ant aversion
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Lesson Sixteen
impalpable
Trapped in a far-off land, Sarah had only her
impalpable memories of home to comfort her at
night.
adj. unable to be felt intangible syn
imperceptible indiscernible
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Lesson Sixteen
fiscal
Because Shawn never demonstrated fiscal
responsibility, his parents refused to give him
another loan.
adj. pertaining to finances syn economic
budgetary
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Lesson Sixteen
regale
The decadent courtiers regaled themselves with
rare and expensive truffles flown in from the
Middle East.
v. to delight with something pleasing or
amusing syn entertain amuse ant anger
depress annoy
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Lesson Sixteen
miscreant
The notorious miscreant had been wanted for
crimes in eight different states before his
subsequent imprisonment.
n. a vicious person syn villain criminal knave
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Lesson Sixteen
flagellate
When the fireman dropped the high pressure hose,
it flagellated the parked cars along the street,
bending doors and breaking windshields.
v. to whip to lash syn flog
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Lesson Sixteen
lascivious
Society usually frowns on lascivious public
conduct, but is more tolerant of such behavior in
private.
adj. lustful or lewd syn wanton obscene ant
wholesome decent
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Lesson Sixteen
flout
In flaunting his individualism, Jerry flouted the
rules of his school.
v. to ridicule to show contempt for syn mock
scoff ant esteem revere
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Lesson Sixteen
salacious
The store placed the salacious magazines behind
the counter.
adj. obscene lustful syn lecherous ant chaste
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Lesson Seventeen
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Lesson Seventeen
rebuke
The team rebuked the player who seldom showed up
for practice but always wanted to play first
string.
v. to scold to blame syn admonish reprimand
ant praise laud
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Lesson Seventeen
nonentity
In a large, impersonal corporation, some
employees must struggle to keep from feeling they
are nonentities.
n. a person or thing of little importancesyn
cipher nobody
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Lesson Seventeen
sang-froid
Marcie accepted her punishment with unemotional
sang-froid.
n. calmness composure or cool self-possession syn
aplomb self-confidence ant uneasiness
perturbation
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Lesson Seventeen
desultory
It was a desultory presentation, full of long and
uncomfortable silences.
adj. wandering from subject to subject syn
disconnected rambling
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Lesson Seventeen
hector
The teacher hectored the students until a few
burst into tears.
v. to bully to pester syn badger browbeat
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Lesson Seventeen
pandemic
The flu strain pandemic of 1918 and 1919 killed
some 50 million to 100 million people worldwide.
adj. general widespread
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Lesson Seventeen
coalesce
Many separate groups coalesced into a mighty army.
v. to blend to merge syn mix unite combine
ant separate divide
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Lesson Seventeen
beguile
From behind the curtain stepped a child prodigy
who beguiled the audience by playing a Chopin
polonaise.
v. to deceive to charm to enchant syn charm
fool ant irritate bore
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Lesson Seventeen
ennui
Oppressed by ennui, the retired statesman looked
around desperately for something important to do.
n. boredom a weariness resulting from a lack of
interest ant excitement interest
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Lesson Seventeen
hiatus
Over the holidays, bloggers go on hiatus from the
demands of spreading gossip and conjecture.
n. a pause or gap syn intermission break
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Lesson Seventeen
lambent
Veronicas lambent eyes made Miguel forget what
he had planned to say.
adj. softly bright or radiant moving lightly
over a surface syn glowing lucid
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Lesson Seventeen
ergo
You spent our paychecks on video poker machines
ergo, we eat beans and rice this week! scolded
Waynes wife, Maggie.
conj. therefore syn consequently hence
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Lesson Seventeen
hubris
Hubris has defeated many an overaggressive
general.
n. excessive pride or self-confidence syn
arrogance overconfidence ant humility
diffidence
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Lesson Seventeen
pecuniary
Connie reviewed her pecuniary resources and
decided to hit her parents up for a loan.
adj. pertaining to money financial syn monetary
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Lesson Seventeen
sibilant
Johns jokes bombed, and he heard the sibilant
sounds of an unhappy audience hissing in disgust.
adj. a hissing sound
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Lesson Eighteen
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Lesson Eighteen
incendiary
Falsely shouting fire in a crowded room is a
hostile and incendiary act.
adj. causing to excite or inflame syn
instigative inciting
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Lesson Eighteen
apotheosis
Discovering an authentic pirate map and then
traveling in search of treasure was, to the
neighborhood children, the apotheosis of
adventure.
n. the finest example syn epitome archetype
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Lesson Eighteen
contiguous
The firefighters worked quickly to contain the
fire to one of the eight contiguous townhouses.
adj. making contact or touching at some point
side by side syn adjoining abutting ant
separated detached
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Lesson Eighteen
auspicious
Seeing half the staff quit their jobs during his
first day on the job was not an auspicious start
for the new manager.
adj. signaling favorable or promising
results syn encouraging
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Lesson Eighteen
vociferous
Indulging in vociferous bragging cheapened the
athletes accomplishments.
adj. marked by noise loud syn boisterous
clamorous
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Lesson Eighteen
avuncular
An avuncular demeanor made Eli a popular coach.
adj. similar to an uncle
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Lesson Eighteen
proletariat
A discontented proletariat picketed the opulent
estate of the corrupt governor.
n. working class or lower class
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Lesson Eighteen
tenacious
The soldiers staged a tenacious defense and broke
the enemys will.
adj. strongly held not easy to separate syn
clinging resolute ant weak
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Lesson Eighteen
specious
With specious reasoning, the salesman convinced
the elderly couple to purchase the luxury car
with all the unnecessary and unlikely to be used
options.
adj. deceptive or misleading syn false ant
accurate
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Lesson Eighteen
refractory
The driver stopped the school bus and refused to
leave until the refractory passengers sat down
and stopped screaming.
adj. unmanageable or difficult to control
willful syn defiant provocative ant obedient
conforming
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Lesson Eighteen
inimitable
In advertising, every new product seems to be
depicted as a proven, inimitable breakthrough.
adj. cannot be imitated syn incomparable
unparalleled
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Lesson Eighteen
malfeasance
A bank officer accepting cash gifts from loan
customers is definitely malfeasance.
n. poor conduct or wrongdoing, especially on the
part of a public official syn corruption
crookedness
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Lesson Eighteen
platonic
Natalie, whose lab partner had a crush on her,
promised him that their relationship would never
exceed a platonic status.
adj. marked by the absence of romance or physical
attraction
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Lesson Eighteen
pontificate
Feeling quite proud of herself, Nina pontificated
on why her decision had been such a good idea.
v. speak in a pretentiously dignified or dogmatic
way syn orate sermonize
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Lesson Eighteen
prurient
Accustomed to the prurient behavior of
celebrities, the public yawned and went on with
their lives.
adj. given to lustful or lewd thoughts syn
obscene
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Lesson Nineteen
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Lesson Nineteen
insuperable
The adventure magazine honored insuperable heroes
who dared to cross uncharted waters.
adj. not able to be overcome syn indomitable
invulnerable
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Lesson Nineteen
apex
The reckless mountaineer fell from the apex of
the mountain and tumbled nearly 1000 feet down
the north face.
n. the highest point of something syn acme
pinnacle summit ant bottom
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Lesson Nineteen
acrid
The food critic lambasted the restaurant over the
acrid taste of their charred steaks, which
resembled coal more than meat.
adj. marked by a sharp taste or smell bitter
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Lesson Nineteen
fulminate
After he fulminated about his congregations
sins, the preacher quickly passed the collection
plate.
v. to voice disapproval or protest syn denounce
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Lesson Nineteen
jejune
Edwin tried to pump some life into his jejune
essay.
adj. without interest dull syn insipid routine
ant interesting dramatic
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Lesson Nineteen
hegemony
American movies have established a cultural
hegemony in many countries around the world.
n. influence or domination over syn dominion
reign
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Lesson Nineteen
truculent
In the time when kings went off to war, and
cities were ransacked and burned, a truculent
response to enemy provocation was thought to be
the only way to prevent further attacks.
adj. marked by ferocity syn ravenous savage
ant tame gentle
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Lesson Nineteen
credulity
His exaggerated adventure tales strain the
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