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636 Cards in this Set

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halcyon
denoting a past time regarded as idyllically happy and peaceful
shock (of hair)
an unkempt or thick mass of hair
gait
a person's manner of walking
pecuniary
adj -relating to or consisting of money
gymkhana
an event comprising competitions on horseback
festoon
to adorn with decorations
by dent of
by means of
menagerie
a collection of wild animals kept in captivity for exhibition
cur
an aggressive dog or a despicable man
facetious
using inappropriate humour
tilley lamp
a portable oil or paraffin lamp, air pressure used to supply fuel
hepcat
a jazz performer associated with the 1940s/50s
astral
relating to stars or non-physical realms of existence
sou /su:/
1. a former French coin of low value 2. a very small amount of money
miscreant
a heretic person who behaves badly/unlawfully
candid
1. truthful and straightforward and frank 2. (photog) taken informally/unwittingly
tress
a long lock of woman's hair
rictus
a fixed grimace or grin, adj. rictal
sputter
make a series of soft, explosive sounds, speak in incoherent bursts
execrable /EksIkrəbl/
extremely bad or unpleasant
behemoth /bI'hi:mɒθ/
a huge or monstrous creature
vicariously
experienced in the imagination through actions of another/acting or done for another
matelot /'matləʊ/
a sailor
ostentatious
characterised by pretentious or showy display, designed to impress
gynaecomastia
enlargement of male breasts
augury /'ɔ:gjʊri/
1. an omen 2. the interpretation of omens
vie
(vies, vying, vied) - compete eagerly with others in order to do or achieve sth
monolithic
very large and uniform or indivisible
exeunt /'Eksiʌnt/
stage direction 'leave stage' - L. 'they go out'
incandescent
emitting light as a result of being heated, extremely angry
valiance (adj -t)
showing courage or determination
inextricably
impossible to disentangle or impossible to escape from
austere
1. severe or strict in appearance or manner 2. lacking comforts, adornments
élan
energy, style and enthusiasm
assiduous
showing great care and perseverance
au font
in essence
au fait (with)
having a good or detailed knowledge of
heterodox
not conforming with orthodox standards or beliefs
consecrate
make or declare sacred, make bread/wine into body/blood
attritional
wearing down through sustained attack/pressure/friction
lofty
of imposing height, noble, haughty/aloof, thick (wool)
marmoreal
made of or likened to marble
dragoon
(n) member of British cavalry regiment, (v) to coerce sb into doing sth
gratuitously
done without good reason (violence), free of charge
swami /'swɑ:mi/
a male Hindu religious teacher
ouroboros/uroborus /,jʊərə(ʊ)'bɒrəs/
a snake swallowing its tail
intractable
hard to control or deal with, (person) difficult or stubborn
haversack
small, strong bag for back/shoulders, used by soldiers/walkers
erudite /ɛrʊdʌIt/
having/showing great learning - erudition
capricious
given to sudden and unaccountable change of mood or behaviour
sycophant
a servile flatterer, a toady
pep
to make sth/so more lively
myrmidon
a follower or subordinate of a powerful person
aloof
not friendly, cool and distant
haughty
arrogantly superior and disdainful
aloo /'alu:/
potato (Indian)
luff
to steer nearer the wind
terse
sparing in use of words, abrupt, laconic
forestall (2nd syllable stressed)
prevent or obstruct by taking advance action
hysterectomy
operation to remove all or part of the womb
moot
adj - subject to debate/dispute, v. to raise for discussion
listless
lacking energy or enthusiasm
tricorn(e) /'trʌIkɔ:n/
a hat with the brim turned up on three sides
cenotaph
a monument to s.o. buried elsewhere (from Grk 'empty tomb')
parallax
the apparent difference in the position of an object when viewed from different positions
epaulette /'ɛpəlɛt/
an ornamental shoulder piece on military uniform
paraphernalia (sing/pl)
miscellaneous objects
florid
1. having a red/flushed complexion 2. excessively intricate/complicated
yuppie/-py
a well-paid middle-class professional in a city - Young Urban Professional
watershed
1. an area or ridge of land that separates water flowing to different rivers. 2. An event marking a turning point
julep /dju:lɛp/
a sweet drink made from sugar syrup
conveyance
1. a vehicle, 2. legal process of transferring property from one owner to another
rut
1. track made by wheels, 2. a routine - dull but hard to change, 3. annual period of sexual activity in deer and other animals
dystopia
adj. - an imaginary place/society in which everything is bad (adj -n)
astute
having the ability to assess situations/people accurately
canny
1. shrewd (esp in business) 2. pleasant/nice (Scot, N Eng)
firebrand(ery)
a passionate supporter of a cause
ensconce
establish in a comfortable, safe or secret place
astringent
sharp or severe in manner/style (an astringent lotion is applied to skin for cosmetic purposes or to reduce bleeding from minor abrasions)
dissension
disagreement that leads to discord
abiding (of feeling/memory)
enduring
loll
1. sit, lie or stand in a lazy, relaxed way 2. hang loosely
pantheon
1. all the gods of a people/religion collectively 2. an ancient temple dedicated to all gods 3. a collection of famous people.
dabs
fingerprints
gaudy
extravagant or tasteless, bright or showy
glee
great delight. Glee club = a society for singing part songs
Stygian
very dark - from the River Styx - an underworld river in Greek mythology
lilt
rising/falling of voice speaking, a gentle rhythm in tune
dobbin
pet name for a draught horse or a farm horse
residual
1. remaining after the great part has been subtracted 2. not accounted for/eliminated
jaunty
having a lively and self-confident manner
nomenclator
selecting of names, a body or system of names, the terms applied to so/sth
(sweet) Fanny Adams
nothing at all
pernicious
having a harmful effect, esp in a gradual or subtle way
goad
v. to provoke to action or reaction 2. drive with a spiked stick
jaunt
a short excursion for pleasure
catalepsy
condition characterised by trance/seizure/loss of sensation/rigidity
adobe
a kind of clay used to make sun-dried bricks
charlatan
a person falsely claiming to have a special knowledge/skill
so(u)briquet /'səʊbrIkeI/
a person's nickname
sultry
1.hot and humid 2. displaying/suggesting a strongly sexual nature in a woman
languor /langə/
1. tiredness or inactivity, esp when pleasurable 2. an oppressive still of the air (adj-languorous)
curlicue
a decorative curl or twist in calligraphy or in an object's design
spurious
1. false or fake 2. illegitimate (child)
eponym(ous)
a word or name derived from a person's name/ the person after whom sth is named
abet
to encourage or assist so to do sth wrong
lambast(e) (2nd syllb stress)
criticise harshly
indict /in'dʌIt/
(N Amer) formally accuse sb of a crime
vitiolic
filled with bitter criticism or malice
placid
calm, not easily upset or excited
churlish
rude, mean-spirited and surly
homily
1. a religious discourse 2. a tedious moralising lecture
accolade
1. sth granted as a special honour 2. the shoulder touch on knighting
harridan
a strict, bossy or belligerent old woman
innocuous
not harmful or offensive
prodigious
remarkably large [(archaic) unnatural]
belligerent
hostile and aggressive, engaged in a war/conflict
plaintive
sounding sad and mournful
plaintiff
a person who brings a case against another in a court of law
lapidary (1st syllb stress) adj (or noun)
1. relating to engraving/cutting/polishing of stones/gems 2. (of language) elegant and concise - suitable for stone engraving (noun - the art of engraving/the person who engraves)
paraxysm
a spasm/fit/convulsion , an outburst of emotion or action
extemporise
to compose or perform without preparation, to improvise
exult
to show or feel triumphant elation
impervious (to)
1. not allowing fluid to pass through (2. unable to be affected by)
dactyloscopy
technique of fingerprinting
excoriate
1. criticise severely 2. damage/remove part of the surface of skin
acute
1. critical, serious 2. perceptive, shrewd, 3. high, shrill
abject (1st syllb stress)
1. (of sth bad) experienced to the maximum degree 2) completely without pride or dignity "an abject apology"
prairie
a large, open area of grassland
acumen
ability to make good judgements and take quick decisions
arrogate
take or claim for os without justification
outré (1st syllb stress)
unusual and typically rather shocking (French - exceeded)
fabby
fabulous
consonant with
in agreement or harmony with
misabile dictu (2nd syllb stress) adj
wonderful to relate
rive gauche
the Left Bank (of the river Seine in Paris) - refers to the Paris of artists/bohemian
ex ante /ɛks'ɑnti/
based on forecasts rather than actual results
deus ex machina
an unexpected power/event saving a seemingly helpless situation
extricate (1st syllb stress)
to free from a constraint or a difficulty
petulant (1st syllb stress)
childishly sulky or bad-tempered
mercurial
subject to sudden changes of mood or mind
febrile /'fi:brʌIl/
1. showing a great deal of nervous excitement 2.showing symptoms of a fever
acrimony (1st syllb stress)
bitterness or ill feeling
transmogrify
transform in a surprising or magical manner
ebullient ɪˈbʌljənt
1. cheerful, full of energy. 2(archaic) boiling or turbulent (liquid)
implacable
1. unable to be appeased 2. unable to be stopped
philanthropist
person who seeks to promote the welfare of others, esp by donating money to good causes
maverick
an unorthodox or independent-minded person
abut (2nd syllb stress) v.
1. [of land or building] to be next to or share a boundary with. 2. to touch or lean on
ungulate /ˈʌŋɡjʊlət, -ˌleɪt/
a hoofed mammal
undulate
to move with smooth wave-like motion
indelible (2nd syllb stress)
1. [of ink or mark] unable to be removed 2. unable to be forgotten
risible
such as to provoke laughter
secede
to withdraw formally from membership of a federal union or a political or religious organisation
the Secession
the withdrawal of 11 Southern states from the US union in 1860 leading to the Civil War.
miscegenation /ˌmɪsɪdʒɪˈneɪʃən/
the interbreeding of people of different races#
plumb v.
1. to measure depth of water 2. to experience fully/to extremes
plumb adv
1. exactly 2. (N. Am) completely
plumb adj.
1. vertical 2. (cricket, of wicket) level/true
apoplectic ('apoplexy) [3rd syllb stress)
extremely angry
aplomb /əˈplɒm/ n.
self-confidence or assurance
laconic
using very few words, terse
etiolated /ˈiːtɪəˌleɪtɪd/
1. (of a plant) pale and weak due to lack of light 2. having lost vigour or substance, feeble.
agronomy (2nd syllb stress)
the science of soil management and crop production
affable
good-natured and sociable
largess
1. generosity 2. money/gifts given generously
chow /tʃaʊ/ (v/n)
food / to eat
bugbear
a cause of obsessive fear, anxiety or irritation
ornery /ˈɔː.nə.ri/
(N Amer, inform) bad-tempered
rumbustious
boisterous or unruly
peacenik
(inform, often derogatory) a member of a pacifist movement
corral /kəˈrɑːl/
(N Amer) 1. pen for livestock on a farm/ranch, 2. a defensive enclosure of wagons in an encampment
profligate /ˈprɒf.lɪ.gət/ (adj) profligacy /ˈprɒf.lɪ.gə.si/ (n)
recklessly extravagant/wasteful, licentious, dissolute
licentious
1. promiscuous and unprincipled in sexual matters. 2. (archaic) disregarding accepted rules - especially in grammar/literary style
dissolute
overindulgent in sensual pleasures
contiguous
1. sharing a common border, 2. next or together in a sequence
foible
a minor weakness or eccentricity
aegis /ˈiː.dʒɪs/
the protection, backing or support or someone
serendipity
the occurrence and development of events by chance in a happy or beneficial way
puerile
childishly silly and trivial
personable
having a pleasant appearance and manner
shtetl (pl. shtetlach or shtetls)
[Yiddish] a small Jewish town in Eastern Europe
shtick
[Yiddish] an attention getting or theatrical routine, gimmick, or talent
shtook
[Yiddish] trouble
shtup (-ped past participle)
[Yiddish] to have sex with
recrudesce //ˌriː.kruːˈdEs/.
(form) to break out again, recur - (recrudescence, recrudescent)
jolie laide /,ʒɒlI 'lEd/
a woman who is attractive despite having ugly features
ardour /ˈɑː.də/
great enthusiasm or passion
vade mecum /vɑ:də meikəm/
guide kept constantly at hand
truculent
defiantly aggressive, eager or quick to fight
corollary n. (adj.)
a direct consequence or result (associated, supplementary)
impute
to attribute, ascribe, assign (a value)
venial /ˈviː.nIəl/
refers to a sin that is excusable and not serious
belie
fail to give a true notion of, fail to justify (a claim/expectation)
penitent adj/n
feeling regret/one who repents sins
striation
marking of striae - linear marks, usually parallel
periphrasis /pə'rIfrəsIs/
1. use of indirect or circumlocutory speech or writing. 2. use of separate words to express a grammatical relationship otherwise indicated by inflection - e.g. 'did go' rather than 'went'
gaucherie
awkward or unsophisticated ways
entropy (1st syllb stress)
a measure of the rate of transfer of information in a message or language
bathetic
denoting an unintentional change in mood from the important/serious to the trivial/ridiculous
apocryphal /əˈpɒk.rɪ.fəl/
(of a report) of doubtful authenticity, although widely circulated as being true
opacity
being difficult or impossible to understand
volition
the faculty or power of using one's own will ("of one's own volition")
bifurcated
divided into two branches or forks
substantive
having a firm basis in reality and therefore important or meaningful/having an independent existence.
asserveration (4th syllb stress)
a solemn or emphatic declaration or statement
imbibe
to drink alcohol, to absorb (knowledge)
imbue
fill with a feeling or quality
venal /'vi:nl/
showing or motivated by susceptibility to bribery (:vendere)
inveigh (against)
to speak or write out with great hostility
tome
a (large and scholarly) book
inveigle sb into
to persuade by deception or flattery
obviate
1. remove (a need/difficulty) 2. avoid; prevent
surfeit (n)
1. an excess 2.(archaic) an illness caused by excessive overeating/drinking
surfeit (v)
1. to weary sb through excess 2. overeat
wanton (adj)
1. (of violence) deliberate and unprovoked. 2. promiscuous 3. growing profusely 4. luxuriant - lively
wanton (v)
1. play, frolic 2. behave promiscuously
sup
(n) 1. a sip, 2. an alcoholic drink (v) 1. to sip 2. to eat supper.
usurer /ˈjuː.zjʊ.rər/
a person who lends money at unreasonably high rates of interest
impudent (1st syllb stress)
not showing due respect for another; impertinent
undone
ruined by a disastrous setback
disinterested
1. impartial 2. uninterested
mendacious
untruthful
duplicitous
1. deceitful 2. [law] (of a charge or plea) containing more than one allegation
votaress
nun/votary - a devoted follower - one who has made vows of dedication to a religion
hie! /hʌI/
go swiftly
fie! /fʌI/
express disgust or outrage
brazen
1. bold and shameless 2. made of brass
brazen it out
endure a difficult situation with apparent confidence and lack of shame
warrant
1. to justify/necessitate. 2. officially affirm/guarantee. - I'll warrant you = no doubt
egregious
1. outstandingly bad, shocking. 2. (archaic) very good
opprobrium
1. harsh criticism, scorn 2. public disgrace arising from shameful conduct.
jeremiad /ˌdʒɛr əˈmʌɪ əd/
long, mournful complaint/lamentation
gerontocracy
state/society/group governed by old people
acrimonious
angry and bitter
boondoggle
(N Amer.) a wasteful project - unnecessary or fraudulent. V - to waste time/money on such projects
auspice /ˈɔ:spIs/
an omen (archaic)
totemic
(from totem - a natural object or animal believed to have spiritual significance and so adopted as an emblem
swinge
strike hard, beat
nobble
steal, thwart by underhand means
hole up
hide oneself
alacrity
brisk and cheerful readiness
paean /'pi: ən/
a song of praise or triumph
Politburo
policymaking committee of a communist party - esp USSR
kowtow /ˌkaʊˈtaʊ/
be excessively subservient to sb
vituperation
bitter and abusive language
recalcitrant
obstinately uncooperative
conduit /ˈkɒn.djuː.ɪt/
a channel for conveying water or other fluid
trenchant
1. vigorous or incisive in expression or style. 2. (of a weapon/tool) having a sharp edge
dearth
a scarcity/lack of something.
incisive
1. intelligently analytical and concise 2. (of an action) quick and direct)
spigot /'sp-/
a small peg or plug - esp for insertion into the vent of a cask
itinerant /(ʌ)ɪˈtɪn.ər.ənt/
travelling from place to place
demur
reserved, modest and shy
esoteric
intended for or understood by a small no. of people with a specialised knowledge
to rat
1. to desert one's side/cause 2. 'rat on' - to break an agreement or promise
siphon
n. a tube v. 1. to draw off liquid with a siphon 2. to draw off (money) illicitly over time
extort
obtain by force, threats or other unfair means
vertiginous
extremely high or steep -/ affected by vertigo
scrofulous
adj -from scrofula - a disease with glandular swellings
repudiate
1. refuse to accept or be associated with, 2. deny the truth of
lugubrious
mournful, sad and dismal
morose
sullen and bad-tempered
philtre /ˈfɪltə/
a love potion [from Grk 'phil' - to love]
portentous
overly solemn
portent
1. omen 2. exceptional person/thing
unalloyed
complete and unreserved
supercilious
having an air of contemptuous superiority
accrete /əˈkriːt/
to grow/form by accumulation/coalescence
pusillanimous /ˌpjuː.sɪˈlan.ɪ.məs/
lacking courage/determination, timid
rococo /rəˈkəʊkəʊ/
1. highly ornamented, florid 2. ornate late Baroque 18C European asymmetrical patterns
jejune /dʒɪˈdʒuːn/
1. naïve and simplistic, childish 2. (of ideas, writing) dull
enervate
to cause to feel drained of energy
fetid
smelling unpleasant
tonsure /ˈtɒnsjə/
a part of a monk's head shaven
vacuity - vacuous
showing a lack of thought/intelligence
iconoclast
1. a person who attacks cherished beliefs/institutions 2. a person who destroys religious images
decrepit
1. elderly/infirm 2. worn out/ruined because of age/neglect
fatuity - fatuous
silly and pointless
reverie
1. a daydream 2. (archaic) fanciful idea 3. (music) dreamlike
zooty
(archaic) stylish, flashy
irreverent
disrespectful
raffish
slightly disreputable, but in a attractive way
hoary
1. (having) grey (hair); aged 2. overused and trite
1. hoard 2. horde
1. secret stock 2. large group of people
trite
lacking originality or freshness, dull on account of overuse
irasible
hot-tempered, irritable - from L. 'ira' - ire
chattel
a personal possession
swarthy
dark-complexioned
sanguine /saŋgwɪn/
cheerfully optimistic
1. discrete 2. discreet
2. individually separate and distinct 2. careful and prudent - avoid attracting attention/offence
cabal /kəˈbal/
a secret political clique
contrite
feeling or expressing remorse
diffident
modest/shy because of a lack of self-confidence
compound
1. make worse, 2. combine, 3. settle (debt or court case in exchange for money/other)
immolate
to kill/offer as sacrifice (often by burning)
cohort
1. a group with shared characteristics, 2. a supporter/companion
parlous
(archaic, humorous) full of uncertainty; precarious
varsity
(archaic or S. African) university (N. American) a sports team for a university/college
badinage /ˈbad.ɪ.nɑːʒ/
a witty conversation
atone - etymology of
(lit. at one) Got and mankind united through Jesus dying for man's sins
victual(s) /ˈvɪt.əlz/
food or provisions - pronunciation is representative of the earlier spelling 'vittel'
replete
adj. filled or well-supplied with sth (n. repletion), 2. sated (from v. replenish) =filled with food.
shibboleth /ˈʃɪb.əl.Eθ/
very unwilling to spend money or use resources
correlative /kə'rElətIv/
1. having a correlation 2. gram - corresponding to one another - e.g. neither and nor
sate
to satisfy fully, supply with as much as or more than is desired (also: satiate, n. satiety /sə'tʌIIti/
paucity
the presence of sth in only small or insufficient amounts
paramour
(archaic) a lover, esp one already married
also-ran
1. a loser in a race 2. an undistinguished/unsuccessful person/thing
animist - animism
1. a belief in a supernatural power that animates the universe 2. the attribution of a living soul to plants/inanimate objects
detritus /dɪˈtraɪ.təs/
waste/debris, especially sth produced by erosion/decomposition
grouser
a grumbler
to grouse
to complain pettily
ostensible
apparently true but not necessarily so
nepotism
favouring of relatives/friends when giving jobs - from Ital. nepote
succour
assistance/support in times of hardship
ostentatious
pretentious or showy display designed to impress
machination
plot, scheme (usually evil)
lycanthropy
transformation of man to a wolf or a form of madness believing to be a wolf
impetuous
1. acting or done quickly/rashly 2. moving forcefully/rapidly
suborn
to bribe or otherwise induce someone to commit an unlawful act
utilitarian
adj. useful/practical rather than attractive. N. an adherent of the doctrine that actions are right if it benefits the majority
panoply /'pan~/
a complete or impressive collection/display
inhere /In'hIə/
1. (form) exist essentially or permanently in. 2. [Law] (of rights, powers etc.) be vested in (a person or group) or attached to the ownership of (a property)
conflate
combine into one
suffuse
gradually spread through or over
vicissitude
1. a change of circumstances or fortune, often for worse. 2. alteration between contrasting things
patrician
an aristocrat/nobleman/refined person [member of the noble class in Ancient Rome]
civic
relating to city/town or to duties/activities of its citizens
extrapolate
1. extend the application of (method/conclusion) to different or larger groups. 2. extend graph by inferring unknown values from trends in current data
infer
deduce from evidence and reasoning rather than explicit statements
coeval /kəʊˈiː.vəl/
adj. contemporary/having same age or date of origin. N. a contemporary
peripatetic
1. travelling from place to place - working/based in a succession of places each for a short period 2. Aristotelian - referring to his practice of walking to and fro while teaching
pastiche
an artistic work in a style that imitates that of another work/artist/trend
partisan
1. a strong supporter of a party/cause/person 2. member of an armed group fighting secretly against occupying force. Adj. prejudiced in favour of a particular cause
exigency /ˈEk.sɪ.dʒənt .si/
an urgent need or demand
impecunious
having little or no money
perspicacy, adj-uous
(person) expresses things clearly, (account) lucid, easily understood
expedient
adj - convenient and practical, though maybe immoral/improper, n-a means to an end, but possibly improper
pogrom /ˈpɒg.rəm/
an organised massacre of a particular ethnic group - originally that of the Jews in Russia [Russ: 'devastation)
distrait (fem -e)
distracted/absent-minded
concubine /ˈkɒŋ.kjʊ.baɪn/ (n. concubinage)
a woman who lives with a man but has a lower status that his wife/wives (perhaps due to caste/slavery etc.)
ancillary
adj - 1. providing support to primary activities of an organisation 2.additional but inferior/subsidiary
parsimonious
very unwilling to spend money or use resources
farrago /fəˈrɑː.gəʊ/
a confused mixture
emeritus /ɪˈmer.ɪ.təs/
having retired but allowed to keep one's title as an honour
farouche /fəˈruːʃ/
sullen or shy in company
expunge
obliterate or remove completely
inordinate
1. unusually large or excessive 2. (archaic) unrestrained in feelings or behaviour
pique
n. feeling of irritation or resentment due to a slight to one's pride. V. 1. to stimulate (curiosity/interest) 2. be piqued - feel irritated/resentful
acolyte
1. assistant or follower 2. one who assists priest in service
intemperate
showing a lack of self control - has excessive indulgence esp in alcohol
hector (v)
to talk to sb in a bullying way (adj hectoring) (from Hector in Illiad)
grandstand
seek to attract favourable public or media attention (derogatory)
detent /dI'tEnt/
a catch in a machine which prevents motion until released
hunker (down)
to squat [Germ: hocken] (to apply os seriously to a task)
chivvy
to repeatedly tell so to do sth
array v.
to display in an impressive way 2. to be elaborately clothed in 3. impanel (/empanel) a jury
barrack v.
(brit) to jeer kindly (Aus) ~ for = give encouragement to
arcane
understood by few, mysterious
pay lip service to
express support for insincerely
apparatchik /apəˈraʧɪk/
(derog/hum) an official in a large political organisation (a blindly loyal bureaucrat) 2. a member of the Communist party (apparat)
conversant with
familiar with/knowledgeable about sth
assuage /əˈsweɪdʒ/
1. make (an unpleasant feeling) less intense 2. satisfy (hunger/desire)
denigrate
criticise unfairly, disparage
animus
1. hostility or ill-feeling 2. motivation to do sth 3. masculine part of a woman's personality (Jung phil)
cavil /ˈkæv.əl/
make petty or unnecessary
opine /əʊ ˈpaɪn/
hold and state as one's opinion
effervescent /ˌEf.əˈvEs.ənt/
1. fizzy 2. vivacious and enthusiastic
solecism
a grammatical mistake, an instance of incorrect behaviour
hamstring v.
1. to cripple by cutting hamstrings 2. to thwart or restrict
rapacious
aggressively greedy
vox populi
the opinions or beliefs of the majority
obelus
symbol † used as a reference mark or to indicate a person is deceased
pare
1. to trim by cutting outer edges 2. to reduce/diminish in stages
extirpate /ˈek.stəː.peɪt/
to destroy completely, eradicate
unedifying
distasteful, unpleasant
albumen
egg white
cavalier /ˌkæv.əlˈɪər /
adj - showing a lack of proper concern
emetic /ɪˈmEt.ɪk/
(of a substance) adj. causing vomitting - 'emisis = vomiting
eidetic /aɪˈdɛtɪk/
denoting mental images having unusual vividness and detail, as if actually visible. - pertaining to vivid memories
otiose
1. serving no practical purpose 2. idle
as lief
as happily, gladly
hermetic
1. (of a seal) air tight 2. insulated/protected from outside influences
unctuous
1. excessively flattering or ingratiating 2. having a greasy/soapy feel - [Ital ungere - to anoint/grease)
inchoate /ɪnˈkəʊ.eɪt/
1. not fully formed/developed - rudimentary - 2. confused, incoherent
smart v.
1. give a sharp/stinging pain 2. feel upset/annoying
predecease
to die before
interdiction
prohibition
propensity
an inclination or tendency (from 'pro' forward and 'pendere' hang)
kecks
trousers/underpants
benighted
1. in a state of intellectual or moral ignorance 2. overtaken by darkness
bumptious
irritatingly self-assertive
between scylla and charybdis /'sIlə/ /kəˈrɪbdɪs/
between a rock and a hard place
1. convince 2. persuade
1. cause to believe firmly in the truth of sth 2. cause to do something through reason/argument.
effete /ɪˈfiːt/
1. affected and over-refined and ineffectual - (man) weak and effeminate 2. no longer capable of effective action
efficacy /ˈEf.ɪ.kə.si/
effectiveness (adj. efficacious)
isinglass
type of gelatine from fish - esp sturgeon
epistemic
relating to knowledge [Grk 'episteme' knowledge]
cankerous
bitter
trestle
framework consisting of a horizontal beam supported by two pairs of sloping legs to support a flat surface
urbane
(esp of a man) suave, courteous and refined
snaffle
(informal) illicitly take for oneself
husband (v)
to use (resources) economically
wheedle
to employ endearments or flattery to persuade so to do sth
systole /ˈsɪstəli/ - diastole /dʌɪ'astəli/
1. phase of the heart beat when the heart muscle contracts and pumps blood into the arteries. 2. shortening of a vowel. - 1. when the heart muscle relaxes and allows the chambers to fill with blood 2. lengthening of a vowel
schooner /ˈskuː.nə/
1. a sailing ship 2. a large glass for (Brit) sherry (US) beer
forb
a herbaceous flowering plant other than grass
pantywaist
(US) a feeble or effeminate person
Milquetoast /ˈmɪlktəʊst/
(US) a timid or submissive person
temporise
avoid making a decision or committing os in order to gain time
wainscotting
an area of wooden panelling on the lower part of the walls of a room
metier /'mEtjeI/
a profession or occupation (-one that one is good at)
galvanise
to shock or excite into action
moribud
1. at the point of death 2. in terminal decline - lacking in vigour
inune (be inured to)
to accustom (so) to sth (unpleasant)
anomie /ˈæn.əm.i/ - adj. anomic /ə'nomik/
social instability caused by the lack of the usual social/ethical standards adj - socially disorganised.
foment /fə(ʊ)ˈmEnt/
instigate/stir up (revolution or strife)
palliative
relieving pain or alleviating a problem without dealing with the cause
tenebrous
dark, shadowy
maven
(US/Yiddish) an expert/connoisseur
sanctimonious
making a show of being morally superior
parochial /pəˈrəʊ.ki.əl/
1. relating to a church parish. 2. having a narrow outlook/scope
caravanserai - /kærəˈvænsəraɪ/
1. inn with a central courtyard for travellers in desert 2. a group of people travelling together.
prolix adj. prolixity n.
adj. (of speech or writing) tediously lengthy
calumniate /kəˈlʌmni.eɪt/
(form) make false and defamatory statements about
anathematise /əˈnaθ.ə.mətaɪz/
to curse/condemn
seraph(ical)
n (adj) an angelic - associated with light/purity/ardour
lacuna /ləˈkjuː.nə/, pl -ae /i/
a gap or missing portion
priggish
self-righteously moralistic and superior (n. = a prig)
seraglio
the women's apartments in a Muslim palace > a harem
waspish
sharply irritable
upbraid
scold or reproach
nubiferous
bringing/producing clouds
epistaxis
bleeding from the nose
estuary
the tidal mouth of a large river
wrest
to forcibly pull from so's grasp - take (power) after resistance (-same root as 'wrist')
stir (n)
(informal) prison
turophile
a cheese lover
mop
an autumn fair or gathering at which farmhands/servants were hired
preternatural /ˌpriː.təˈnætʃ.əɹ.əl/
beyond what is normal or natural
specious /ˈspiːʃəs/
1. superficially plausible but actually wrong 2. misleadingly attractive in appearance
deleterious /ˌdɛlɪˈtɪəriəs/
(form) causing harm or damage
natch
naturally
felid /'fi:lId/
a mammal of the cat family.
arcadia
1. region in S Greece regarded as an ideal, rustic paradise - also Arcady /'ɑːk~/
maudlin /ˈmɔːd.lɪn/
adj. self-pityingly or tearfully sentimental
degagé /deI'gɑ:ʒeI/
adj. unconcerned or unconstrained
expostulate /ɪkˈspɒs.tjʊ.leɪt/
to express strong disagreement/disapproval
cloaca /~eIkə/
a common cavity at the end of the digestive tract for release of both excretory and genital products
exeat /'EksIət/
a permission from a college or boarding school for temporary absence
eximious /Ek'sI~/
preeminent, outstanding
candour
the quality of being open and honest
abstemious /æbˈstiː.mi.əs/
adj. indulging only very moderately in sth, esp food or drink
spoony
1. sentimentally or foolishly amorous 2. foolish
ullage
1. the amount by which a container falls short of being full 2. loss of liquid by evaporation or leakage.
parricidal, parricide
the killing of a parent or near relative
derhotacise
a distortion of the sound 'r'
abscond /əbˈskɒnd/
1. to leave hurriedly and secretly to escape from custody or avoid arrest. 2. to hide away
foolscap
a size of paper c. 330x200/400mm
costermonger
a person who sells goods, esp fruit/veg, from a handcart in the street
wastrel /'weIstrl/
a wasteful or worthless person
au fond
in essence
blue pencil
to censor (traditionally used to censor a text)
buss
to/a kiss
entrammel
entangle, trap
voluptuary
a person devoted to luxury and sensual pleasure (can be used as adj too)
percolate
1. filter through a porous surface or substance. 2. (information) spread gradually. 3. (coffee) prepared in a percolator 4. (US) become full of lively activity/excitement
meiotic - meiosis /maɪˈəʊ.sɪs/
process of cell division - produces daughter cells with half the number of chromosomes as the parent
venustation
to make beautiful
nugatory /ˈnjuː.gə.tər.i/
1. of no value/importance 2. useless or futile
doughty /ˈdaʊ.ti/
brave and resolute
rude
1. (awakening) very abrupt 2. vigorous or hearty 3. roughly made or done 4. ignorant/uneducated
plangent
loud and resonant with a mournful tone
probity /ˈprəʊ.bɪ.ti/
honesty and decency
metathesis
transposition of sounds/letters in a word
plaintive
sounding sad and mournful
echolalia
1. meaningless repetition of another person's spoken words as a symptom of a psychological disorder 2. repetition by a child learning to talk
topiary /ˈtəʊ.pjər.i/
1. art of clipping shrubs into ornamental shapes 2. shrubs/trees clipped in such a way
banjax
(informal) ruin or incapacitate
abrade
to scrape or wear away by erosion
ague /ˈeɪ.ɡju/
malaria or other illness involving fever/shivering
lorgnette /lɒ:rnjɛt/
pair of glasses/opera glasses held by a long handle at one end
ab ovo
from the very beginning
aglet
the cover at the end of the shoelace to prevent it from fraying
guano
excrement of seabirds, used as fertilizer
anagrammatic
adj of anagram - v. anagrammatise
diablerie /dI'ɑ:blri/
1. the quality of being reckless or wild in a charismatic way. 2 (archaic) sorcery supposedly assisted by the devil
lissom(e)
slim, supple and graceful
naif /naI'i:f/
adj naïve, n. a naïve person
plaudits (pl)
praise, enthusiastic approval - said by Roman actors at the end of the play - from L plaudite ('applaud!')
sybaritic - sybarite /'sIbəraIt/
a person who is self-indulgently fond of sensuous luxury
recondite
adj (of a subject/knowledge) obscure
gamut /'gamət/
1. complete range or scope of sth. 2. a complete musical scale - the range of a voice or instrument.
flaneur /fla'nə:/
a man about town who saunters around observing society - or an idler/loafer
citadel /'sItədl/
1. a fortress protecting or dominating a city 2. a meeting hall of the Salvation Army
run the gamut
experience or display the complete range of sth.
prelate /'prElət/
a bishop or other high ecclesiastical dignitary
punster
one who makes puns
yore
(of yore) of former times or long ago
peremptory
adj. 1. insisting on immediate attention or obedience, brusque and imperious 2. (law) not open to appeal or challenge - final
gonnegtion
mispronunciation of connection
meretricious
1. showily attractive but lacking real value 2. (arch) characteristic of a prostitute
debauchee
s.o. who is debauched, s.o. addicted to indulgence in sensual pleasures
debaucher
s.o. who debauches, or corrupts others, a seducer
debauch
destroy moral purity or corrupt
eye dialect
written representations of dialect speech
glib
fluent but insincere and shallow
fusilier
member of a British regiment formally armed with fusils (light muskets)
mezzanine /ˈmet.sə.niːn/
1. a low storey between two others especially between ground and first floor 2. (US) lowest balcony in a theatre
dilatory /ˈdɪl.ə.tri/
1. slow to act 2. intended to cause delay
hypaethral /hʌɪˈpiːθɹəl/
(of a classical building) having no roof
acedia /əˈsiːdɪə/
1. spiritual or mental sloth 2. boredom 3. apathy
slumgullion
cheap or insubstantial stew
bootless
(archaic, of a task) ineffectual, useless - OE bot - advantage/remedy -> better
lionise
treat as a celebrity
arcana (pl, sing=arcanom) /ɑ:'keɪnə/
secrets, mysteries
youthquake
a shift in cultural norms influenced by the values, tastes and mores of young people
mores /ˈmɔː.reɪz/
pl. n. the customs and conventions of a community
skirl
n. a shrill sound, esp that of bagpipes, v. to make sure a sound
snafu /ˈsnɑːfuː/
a confused or chaotic state/mess, v.to throw into chaos [WWII acronym - situation normal, all fucked up]
harbinger /ˈhɑː.bɪn.dʒə/
n. a person or thing that announces or signals the approach of sth [ME -> a person who provides or goes ahead to find lodgings ->later 'herald', from Proto-Germanic *harjaz (“army”) + *bergô (“protection”). Compare German 'Herberge', Italian 'albergo', English 'harbour'.]
pneumothorax
presence of air/gas in cavity between lungs and chest causing lung collapse
pneumo-
1. relating to lungs, 2. relating to presence of air/gas
pneumonia
a lung infection where air sacs fill with pus
pasquinade /paskwɪˈneɪd/
n. satire or lampoon, originally one displayed/delivered in a public place -> C16 Ital 'pasquinata' from 'pasquino' a statue in Rome on which abusive Latin verses were posted.
tart
1. sharp or acid in taste 2. (remark, tone of voice) cutting, butter or sarcastic
hale
adj, (of an old person) strong and healthy
floe
a sheet of floating ice
overweening
showing excessive confidence or pride
anodyne /ˈanədʌɪn/
adj. unlikely to cause offence or disagreement but dull, n. a painkiller (from Anc Greek 'without pain')
somnolent
adj. sleepy, drowsy
retrofit
fit with a component not fitted during manufacture
recidivist
a convicted criminal who reoffends (L 'fall back')
retroactive
adj (esp of legislation) taking effect from a date in the past
non compos mentis
not in one's right mind, not of sound mind
aquiline
1. like an eagle 2. (of a nose) curved like an eagle's beak
bête noir
a person or a thing that one particularly dislikes
apposite
(esp of language) very appropriate, apt
deliquesce
v, 1. (of organic matter) become liquid (esp during decomposition) 2. (Chem) (of a solid) become liquid by absorbing moisture from the air
ameliorate
v. to make (sth bad or unpleasant) better
interregnum
a period wen normal government is suspended, esp. between successive reigns or regimes
efface /ɪˈfeɪs/
1. erase (a mark) from a surface. 2. (efface o.s.) to make o.s. appear insignificant or inconspicuous
triptych /ˈtrɪp.tɪk/
picture or carving on three panel, typically hinged vertically and used as an altarpiece -> a set of three associated artistic, literary or musical works
baleful
menacing, having a harmful effect.
breakneck
dangerously or extremely fast
endemic
1. (of disease/condition) regularly found among a particular people or in a certain area. 2. (of plant/animal) native or restricted to a certain area.
foley
relating to the addition of sound effects after the shooting of a film - named after the US inventor Jack Foley
atrophy
1 (of body tissue) waste away 2. gradually decline in effectiveness or vigour
areal
of or pertaining to an area
newel
the central or supporting pillar of a spiral staircase -> the top/bottom support post of a stair rail
endue
endow with a quality or ability
spat
1. a short cloth gaiter covering the instep and ankle. 2 cover for the upper part of a wheel
shrive
1. to hear a confession of sb, assign a penance and absolve. 2. ~ o.s. = to present o.s. to a priest for confession, penance and absolution
lum
a chimney
rayon
a textile fibre or fabric made from regenerated cellulose
postpartum
relating to the period after childbirth
Garrison finish
a race finish in which the winner comes from behind at the end -> named after jockey Edward Garrison
tucket
a fanfare on a trumpet
harmartia /hə'mɑːtɪə/
a tragic flaw
doggerel /ˈdɒɡ(ə)rəl/
comic verse composed in irregular rhythm ->badly written verse
poetaster
a person who writes inferior poetry ('aster' denoting poor quality from L = incomplete, little)
criticaster
a petty or charlatan critic
politicaster
a third-rate, petty politician (Ital - politicastro)
pridian
referring to a previous day
expedite
cause to be accomplished more quickly
bolide /ˈbəʊ.laɪd/
a large meteor which explodes in the atmosphere
apodictic /apə(ʊ)ˈdɪktɪk/
clearly established or beyond dispute
paradigm
1. a typical example, pattern or model of sth 2. a world view underlying the theories and methodology of a scientific subject. 3. (Ling) a set of items that form mutually exclusive choices in particular syntactic roles. 4. (Gram) a table of all the inflected forms of a word.
tendentious
calculated to promote a particular cause or point of view
qui vive (on the ~) /ki: vi:v/
on the alert or lookout (from the French 'who lives?' - a sentry's challenge)
prognosticate
to foretell; prophesy
schizoid
(Psych) denoting a personality type characterised by emotional aloofness and solitary habits -> (inform) resembling schizophrenia in having contradictory elements; mad or crazy
exculpate
show or declare to be not guilty of wrongdoing
promulgate
1. promote or make widely known, 2. put (a law/decree) into effect by official proclamation
propitiate
appease, win or regain the favour of
incubus -i
1. a male demon believed to have sexual intercourse with a sleeping woman 2. (arch) nightmare
askance
with a look of suspicion or disapproval
fillip
n. 1. a stimulus or boost 2. a flick. V. to propel (sth small)
charwoman
a woman employed as a cleaner in a house/office ('chore'->'char')
alabaster
adj. smooth and white, n. a white material used to make ornaments
caterwaul
v. to make a shrill howling or wailing noise, n. a shrill noise
skinflint
a miser
factotum /fækˈtəʊ.təm/
an employee who does all kinds of work (L 'fac' [do] 'totum' [everything])
aviary
a large enclosure for keeping birds in
amperage
the strength of an electric current in amps
iniquity
highly unfair or immoral behaviour
birch
v. to beat with a bundle of birch twigs as a punishment
intendant
1. the administrator of an opera house or theatre. 2. a title of a high-ranking official.
presage /ˈprEs.ɪdʒ/
v. to be a sign or warning of (an imminent event) n. an omen or portent.
rhapsodise
speak with great enthusiasm about sth or so
adamantine /,adə'man-/
adj (lit) unbreakable
coltish
energetic but awkward in one's movements or behaviour
fustian
pompous speech or writing
protean /ˈprəʊ.tɪ.ən/,
tending or able to adapt, variable, versatile
vestigial /vɛˈstɪdʒ(ɪ)əl/
adj. 1. forming a very small remnant of sth that was once greater. 2. (of an organ) atrophied - become functionless in the cause of evolution
carapace /ˈkæ.rəˌpeɪs/
the hard upper shell of a tortoise/crustacean
indubitable /ɪnˈdju:bɪtəbl/
unquestionable
saturnalia
an ancient Roman festival of Saturn in December -> an occasion of wild revelry
poltroon
an utter coward
inveterate /ɪn'vɛtərət/
having a long-standing habit or activity -> An inveterate gambler
desultory /ˈdɛs.əl.tə.ɹi/,
adj, lacking purpose or enthusiasm
priapic
1. relating to phallus or male sexuality 2. having a constantly erect penis (from Greek god of fertility Priopos)
bibulous
excessively fond of drinking alcohol
farceur
a writer or performer in farces
pas de deux
a dance for two (French 'step for two)
goitre /ˈɡɔɪ.tə/
a swelling of the neck from enlargening of thyroid gland
uxorious /ʌkˈsɔːɹ.i.əs/
adj. showing great/excessive fondness for one's wife (L 'uxor' [wife])
adenoidal
nasal (sounding voice)
gurney -ies
a wheeled stretcher for transporting hospital patients
kittel
white robe worn by Jews at festivals -> D der Kittel [tunic]
scion /ˈsaɪən/
1. detached living portion of a plant 2. descendant/child (of noble family) 3. heir
vespertine
relating to the evening
redolant
1. exuding fragrance, aromatic 2. evocative or suggestive
nescience /ˈnɛsɪəns/
lack of knowledge, ignorance -> nescient
ether /ˈiːθə/
1. liquid used as anaesthetic solvent 2. (lit) clear sky - upper regions of air above the clouds
spavin (adj - ed)
a disorder of a horse's hock (leg joint)
jackanapes
1. an impertinent person. 2. a tame monkey
indefeasible
not subject to being lost, annulled or overturned
fleer
v. to laugh impudently or jeeringly n. an impudent or jeering look/speech
duende /du:'EndeI/
1. passion 2. evil spirit
ahimsa /əˈhɪmsɑː/
(in Hindu, Buddhist and Jainist tradition) respect for all living things and an avoidance of violence towards others
paronomasia
n. a pun
sciolist
(arch) a person who pretends or claims to be knowledgeable (from L 'scio' [I know])
kwashiorkor /,kwɒʃɪ'ɔ:kɔ:/
malnutrition caused by protein deficiency causing swollen bellies [Ghanaian]
dissolute
over-indulgent in sensual pleasures
lexiphanic
using bombastic or pretentious language
magniloquent
speaking pompously
bombastic
pompous or overly wordy
grandiloquent
speaking pompously
emblazon
1. to conspicuously display (a design) on sth -> depict (a heraldic device) on sth. 2. (arch) to praise publically
seminal
1. (of a work, event, person) stronly influencing later developments. 2. relating to or denoting semen.
heady
1. (of alcohol) potent, intoxicating 2. having a strong or exhilarting effect.
anthemic
rousing (adj of 'anthem')
callow
(of a young person) inexperienced and immature
prurient /ˈprʊə.ri.ənt/
having or encouraging an excessive interest in sexual matters