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|100 Words Encountered in|
Click word for detail
domesticrelating to a home or family
other common meaning(s) — as in: domestic happiness
We share the domestic chores.
She suffers from more than the usual pre-test anxiety.
elegantrefined and tasteful in appearance, behavior or style
other common meaning(s) — as in: an elegant gown
She was an elegant bride.
The story takes place during medieval times.
triflingsomething of small importance; or a small quantity
other common meaning(s) — as in: a trifling matter
Don’t waste my time with trifling matters.
themea basic idea that underlies what is being said or done — especially in a literary or artistic work
other common meaning(s) — as in: theme of the novel
The party had a 1950’s theme.
ironysaying or writing one thing, while meaning the opposite or something else — usually as humor or sarcasm
other common meaning(s) — as in: verbal irony
She was being ironic when she said she couldn’t wait to see you again.
Children acquire language at an amazing rate.
I think Game of Thrones is the most epic fantasy written since The Rings Trilogy.
dispositionsomeone’s normal mood or personality
other common meaning(s) — as in: a kind disposition
She has a cheerful disposition.
allegorya fictional story whose characters, items, or events are symbolic to express a deeper meaning
In Plato’s allegory, the prisoners in the cave represent people living in ignorance.
MonsieurFrench equivalent to: "Mr." in English
French equivalent to: "sir" in English (a polite way to address a male) — (French)
Monsieur and Madame Curie studied radium.
He took a solemn oath.
countenancefacial expression; or face; or composure
other common meaning(s) — as in: a pleasant countenance
She has a pleasant countenance.
countenanceto tolerate, approve, or show favor or support
other common meaning(s) — as in: giving countenance
We will not countenance torture.
I endeavored to get both sides to agree to a compromise.
reconcileto come to terms with
other common meaning(s) — as in: reconciled herself to
After the accident, she had to reconcile herself to life without loving parents.
essentialabsolutely necessary; or of the greatest importance
the defining or most important aspect of something
The essential feature of the pen is that it writes so consistently.
renderto make or cause to become
other common meaning(s) — as in: rendered her unconscious
Her verbal attack rendered me speechless.
prevailuse persuasion — especially successfully
other common meaning(s) — as in: she prevailed upon him
The lobbyist prevailed upon the president to sign the legislation.
Both sides were deeply in earnest, even passionate.
sultryhot and humid
other common meaning(s) — as in: a sultry afternoon
It was a sultry afternoon. I could barely breath.
Students should contact our office to inquire about scholarship opportunities.
Don’t despair—help is on the way!
dwellto think, communicate, or let attention stay on (or return to) something for a prolonged period
other common meaning(s) — as in: Don’t dwell on it.
Don’t dwell on the past.
dwellmake one’s home in; or to live in; or to stay (in a place)
other common meaning(s) — as in: It dwells in the forest.
The creature dwells in the forest.
...government of the people, by the people, for the people shall not perish from the earth.
Abraham Lincoln -- Gettysburg Address
They signed a cease-fire agreement.
Pity the poor wretch.
accompanyto travel along with; or to be present with at the same time and/or location
to perform with
The nurse accompanied the old woman everywhere.
inclineda tendency; in the mood; or an attitude that favors something
other common meaning(s) — as in: I’m inclined to
I’m inclined to believe him.
frontieran international boundary or a wilderness at the edge of a settled area
other common meaning(s) — as in: the frontier of Tibet
Indian soldiers and technicians assisted in staffing some of the checkposts on the frontier with Tibet.
precipitateacting with great haste — often without adequate thought
other common meaning(s) — adj as in: a precipitate decision
I had planned to ask her, but she made a precipitate departure.
obligedgrateful or indebted — as in "I’m obliged to you."
required (obligated) to do something — as in "I’m obliged to do the job."
granted a favor for someone — as in "She asked for help and we obliged her."
He obliged her by listening attentively.
Indulgent parents risk spoiling their children.
contraryin opposition to what was just said
the opposite or alternative
disagreeable in personality
We will not allow members to act contrary to our code of ethics.
a ribbon of sand between the angry sea and the placid bay
ShakespeareEnglish dramatist and poet frequently cited as the greatest writer in the English language (1564-1616) — as in: William Shakespeare
As Shakespeare said, "The devil can cite Scripture for his purpose."
sedatecalm and dignified
other common meaning(s) — as in: he is sedate
a quiet sedate nature
After I regained my composure, I thanked her for telling me about the problem.
endureto suffer through (or put up with something difficult or unpleasant)
other common meaning(s) — as in: endured the pain
I endured insult and injury without complaint.
repentancethe feeling or expression of regret for having done something wrong with a firm decision to be a better person in the future
Prisoners who show repentance are more likely to be released on parole.
contemptlack of respect — often accompanied by a feeling of intense dislike or disgust
other common meaning(s) — as in: feels contempt towards him
Familiarity breeds contempt.
contemptthe crime of willful disobedience to or disrespect for the authority of a court or legislative body
other common meaning(s) — as in: held in contempt of court
The judge held her in contempt.
indifferentwithout interest — in various senses such as:
About a third are in favor of the change, a third are opposed, and a third are indifferent.
divinewonderful; or god-like or coming from God
other common meaning(s) — as in: to forgive is divine
Her pies are divine.
profoundof greatest intensity or emotional depth
other common meaning(s) — as in: profound sadness
Her apology was heartfelt—expressing profound sorrow and regret.
She was indignant, but agreed to be searched when they accused her of shoplifting.
I don’t think she comprehends how dangerous this has become.
Does our DNA compel us to act as we do?
I was summoned to the principal’s office.
I will not permit the defendant to make a mockery of this trial.
prejudiceto have unreasonable belief — especially when unfair to members of a race, religion, or other group
or more generally:
to have (or create in others) an unreasonable belief that prevents objective (unbiased) consideration of an issue or situation
The group works to eliminate racial prejudice.
It’s a sad song about the heartbreak of unrequited love.
mortalhuman (especially merely human); or subject to death
other common meaning(s) — as in: mortal body
Don’t expect perfection of a mere mortal.
We thought we could create a utopia, but we failed because we overestimated human nature.
metaphora figure of speech in which a similarity between two things is highlighted by using a word to refer to something that it does not literally denote — as when Shakespeare wrote, "All the world’s a stage, And all the men and women merely players." Shakespeare is not saying the world is really a stage and all people are actors, but there are similarities he wants us to recognize.
He was speaking metaphorically when he referred to being mugged by reality.
similea figure of speech that expresses a resemblance between things of different kinds — usually formed with "like" or "as" — as in "She is as quiet as a mouse," or "It’s like looking for a needle in a haystack."
When she said he was "as subtle as a sledgehammer," she was using ironic simile.
In Paradise Lost, Milton condemns reverence for physical objects—however well intentioned.
Cupid is the Roman counterpart to the Greek Eros.
Herculesmythological Roman hero famous for his strength and for performing 12 immense labors to gain immortality
Heracles is the Greek mythological equivalent of the Roman Hercules.
Ph.Da research doctorate usually based on at least 3 years graduate study and a dissertation; the highest degree awarded in universities in many fields of study
She is a research scientist who earned her Ph.D in physics.
The movie is another remake of Romeo and Juliet.
In Roman mythology, Venus is the counterpart to the Greek Aphrodite.
Exeunt all except Hamlet.
Jupiter is the Roman counterpart to the Greek Zeus.
MedusaGreek mythology: a woman with snakes for hair and the ability to turn people to stone if they looked at her — from Greek mythology
The fashion company, Versace, uses the image of Medusa as a trademark.
Robinson CrusoeDaniel Defoe’s famous novel and the name of its main character — a shipwrecked English sailor who survives on a small tropical island (1719)
Some describe Robinson Crusoe as the first novel of realistic fiction written in English.
The 2004 film, Troy, depicted Agamemnon in an especially unsympathetic manner.
existentialrelating to existentialism; a philosophical movement that assumes each person is free to determine what is essential in his/her existence rather than that being determined by a god and/or authority figures
other common meaning(s) — as in: existential philosophy
It was a moment of existential angst when nothing made sense any more.
PegasusGreek mythology: the immortal winged horse; as the flying horse of the Muses it is a symbol of highflying imagination — from Greek mythology
Pegasus is the mascot of TriStar Pictures.
The Labyrinth was built to hold the Minotaur.
PandoraGreek mythology: the first woman; she was presented with a container of humanity’s evils and of hope
Pandora’s box is frequently referenced in Western culture.
augustmajestic or greatly admired — especially due to high rank or age
more common meaning(s) — as in: august stature
I am humbled to be chosen as a steward of this august institution.
King Arthurmythical king of the Britons (English) recognized as such when he was able to pull the sword Excalibur from the stone that had locked its blade; created the Knights of the Round Table to protect his people
It is another story about the boy who would become King Arthur.
Helen of TroyGreek mythology: "the face that launched a thousand ships" — "the most beautiful woman in the world" — the beautiful daughter of Zeus and Leda who was abducted by Paris; the Greek army sailed to Troy to get her back which resulted in the Trojan War
Helen of Troy is famously described as having "the face that launched a thousand ships."
Dr. Seusspen name of the writer of classic children’s books such as The Cat in the Hat, Green Eggs and Ham, and How the Grinch Stole Christmas (1904-1991)
Theodor Seuss Geisel wrote under the pen name, Dr. Seuss.
She abhors violence.
abideto tolerate or put up with something
other common meaning(s) — as in: abide by her decision
I can’t abide her continual complaints.
abjectextreme (in a negative sense such as misery, hopelessness, submissiveness, cruelty, or cowardice)
She grew up in abject poverty; though she didn’t know it.
the accountant absconded with the cash from the safe
The committee absolved her of any wrong doing.
I appreciate her fine mind, but find her humor a bit acerbic.
acridharsh or caustic — physically as when smoke from burning rubber might irritate the throat; or metaphorically as when someone says something that is especially sarcastic
We were chased from the room by the acrid smoke.
She built a very successful company with uncommon business acumen.
acutesharp (a severely negative event) — often with a rapid onset
other common meaning(s) — as in: acute pain
She felt an acute pain in her neck.
adjureto appeal earnestly or command solemnly
other common meaning(s) — as in: I adjure you
I adjure you.
He admonished the child for his bad behavior
She is an exceptionally adroit pianist.
Don’t grow dependent upon popular adulation. It comes and goes and reverses unexpectedly.
She’s an affable, never-met-someone-she-didn’t-like kind of woman.
affrontan intentional insult; or to intentionally insult — as in: an affront to society
She considered anything but the very best manners to be an affront to her dignity.
He fears a lawsuit from one of the aggrieved parties.
She stepped back aghast at the behavior.
She is amazingly agile for someone so tall.
She completed each assignment with alacrity.
He alluded to Susan without mentioning her name.
aloofsocially distant — often thinking oneself superior to others
obviously uninterested in something that interests others — often as though thinking it beneath one’s dignity or distasteful
People who don’t know her, think she is aloof from the rest of the team, but she is just focused on the game.
The physical altercation between opposing players led to suspensions on both sides.
The elderly couple likes to amble along the beach at sunset.
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