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175 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
aberrant
deviating from normal or correct.
abscond
to leave secretly and hide, often to avoid the law.
advocate
to speak, plead, or argue for a cause, or in another’s behalf. (n) -- one who advocates.
aggrandize
to make greater, to increase, thus, to exaggerate.
amalgamate
to unite or mix. (n) -- amalgamation.
ambiguous
vague; subject to more than one interpretation
ambrosial
extremely pleasing to the senses, divine (as related to the gods) or delicious (n: ambrosia)
anachronism
a person or artifact appearing after its own time or out of chronological order (adj: anachronistic)
anomalous
peculiar; unique, contrary to the norm (n: anomaly)
antediluvian
ancient; outmoded; (literally,before the flood)
antipathy
hostility toward, objection, or aversion to
arbitrate
to settle a dispute by impulse (n: arbitration)
assuage
to make less severe; to appease or satisfy
attenuate
weaken (adj: attenuated)
audacious
extremely bold; fearless, especially said of human behavior (n: audacity)
aver
to declare
banal
commonplace or trite (n: banality)
barefaced
unconcealed, shameless, or brazen
blandishment
speech or action intended to coax someone into doing something
bombast
pompous speech (adj: bombastic)
breach
a lapse, gap or break, as in a fortress wall. To break or break through.ex: Unfortunately, the club members never forgot his breach of ettiquette.
burgeon
to grow or flourish; a bud or new growth (adj: burgeoning )
buttress
to support. a support
cadge
to get something by taking advantage of someone
caprice
impulse (adj: capricious)
castigate
to chastise or criticize severely
catalyst
an agent of change (adj: catalytic; v. catalyze)
caustic
capable of dissolving by chemical action; highly critical: "His caustic remarks spoiled the mood of the party."
chicanery
deception by trickery
complaisant
willingly compliant or accepting of the status quo (n: complaisance)
conflagration
a great fire
corporeal
of or having to do with material, as opposed to spiritual; tangible. (In older writings, coeporeal could be a synonym for corporal. This usage is no longer common)
corporal
of the body: "corporal punishment." a non-commissioned officer ranked between a sergeant and a private.
corroborate
to strengthen or support: "The witness corroborted his story." (n: corroboration)
craven
cowardly; a coward
culpable
deserving of blame (n: culpability)
dearth
lack, scarcity: "The prosecutor complained about the dearth of concrete evidence against the suspect."
deference
submission or courteous yielding: "He held his tongue in deference to his father." (n: deferential. v. defer)
depict
to show, create a picture of.
deprecation
belittlement. (v. deprecate)
depredation
the act of preying upon or plundering: "The depredations of the invaders demoralized the population."
descry
to make clear, to say
desiccate
to dry out thoroughly (adj: desiccated)
diatribe
a bitter abusive denunciation.
diffident
lacking self-confidence, modest (n: diffidence)
disabuse
to free a person from falsehood or error: "We had to disabuse her of the notion that she was invited."
disparaging
belittling (n: disparagement. v. disparage)
dispassionate
calm; objective; unbiased
dissemble
to conceal one's real motive, to feign
dogged
stubborn or determined: "Her dogged pursuit of the degree eventually paid off."
dogmatic
relying upon doctrine or dogma, as opposed to evidence
eclectic
selecting or employing individual elements from a variety of sources: "Many modern decorators prefer an eclectic style." (n: eclecticism)
efficacy
effectiveness; capability to produce a desired effect
effluent
the quality of flowing out. something that flows out, such as a stream from a river (n: effluence)
emollient
softening; something that softens
emulate
to strive to equal or excel (n: emulation)
encomium
a formal eulogy or speech of praise
endemic
prevalent in or native to a certain region, locality, or people: "The disease was endemic to the region." Don't confuse this word with epidemic.
enervate
to weaken or destroy the strength or vitality of: "The heatenervated everyone." (adj: enervating)
engender
to give rise to, to propagate, to cause: "His slip of the toungue engendered much laughter."
enigma
puzzle; mystery: "Math is an enigma to me." (adj: enigmatic)
ephemeral
lasting for only a brief time, fleeting (n: ephemera)
equivocal
ambiguous; unclear; subject to more than one interpretation -- often intentionally so: "Republicans complained that Bill Clinton's answers were equivocal." (v. equivocate)
erudite
scholarly; displaying deep intensive learning. (n: erudition)
esoteric
intended for or understood by only a few: "The esoteric discussion confused some people." (n: esoterica)
eulogy
a spoken or written tribute to the deceased (v. eulogize)
exacerbate
to increase the bitterness or violence of; to aggravate: "The decision to fortify the border exacerbated tensions."
exculpate
to demonstrate or prove to be blameless: "The evidence tended to exculpate the defendant."(adj: exculpatory)
exorbitant
exceeding customary or normal limits, esp. in quantity or price: "The cab fare was exorbitant."
explicit
fully and clearly expressed
extant
in existence, still existing: The only extant representative of that species."
fathom
a measure of length (six feet) used in nautical settings. to penetrate to the depths of something in order to understand it: "I couldn't fathom her reasoning on that issue."
fawn
to seek favor or attention; to act subserviantly (n, adj: fawning)
feign
to give false appearance or impression: "He feigned illness to avoid going to school." (adj: feigned)
fervid, fervent
highly emotional; hot: "The partisans displayed a fervent patriotism." (n: fervor)
fledgling
a baby bird; an inexperienced person; inexperienced.
florid
flushed with a rosy color, as in complexion; very ornate and flowery: "florid prose."
floundering
struggling: "We tried to save the floundering business."
garrulous
verbose; talkative; rambling: "We tried to avoid our garrulous neighbor."
gossamer
fine cobweb on foliage; fine gauzy fabric; very fine: "She wore a gossamer robe."
guile
skillful deceit: "He was well known for his guile." (v. bequile; adj: beguiling. Note, however, that these two words have an additional meaning: to charm (v.) or charming (adj:), while the word guile does not generally have any such positive connotations)
guileless
honest; straightforward (n: guilelessness)
hapless
unfortunate
headlong
headfirst; impulsive; hasty. impulsively; hastily; without forethought: "They rushed headlong into marriage."
homogenous
similar in nature or kind; uniform: "a homogeneous society."
iconoclast
one who attacks traditional ideas or institutions or one who destroys sacred images (adj: iconoclastic)
impecunious
penniless; poor
imperious
commanding
implication
insinuation or connotation (v. implicate)
imply
to suggest indirectly; to entail: "She implied she didn't believe his story." (n: implication)
improvidence
an absence of foresight; a failure to provide for future needs or events: "Their improvidence resulted in the loss of their home."
inchoate
in an initial or early stage; incomplete; disorganized: "The act of writing forces one to clarify incohate thoughts."
incorrigible
not capable of being corrected: "The school board finally decided the James was incorrigible and expelled him from school."
indelible
permanent; unerasable; strong: "The Queen made an indelible impression on her subjects."
ineffible
undescribable; inexpressible in words; unspeakable
infer
to deduce: "New genetic evidence led some zoologists to infer that the red wolf is actually a hybrid of the coyote and the gray wolf."
ingenious
clever: "She developed an ingenious method for testing her hypothesis."(n: ingenuity)
ingenuous
unsophisticated; artless; straightforward; candid: "Wilson's ingenuous response to the controversial calmed the suspicious listeners."
inhibit
to hold back, prohibit, forbid, or restrain (n: inhibition, adj: inhibited)
innocuous
harmless; having no adverse affect; not likely to provoke strong emotion
insensible
numb; unconscious: "Wayne was rendered insensible by a blow to the head." unfeeling; insensitive: "They were insensibile to the suffering of others.:
insipid
lacking zest or excitement; dull
insular
of or pertaining to an island, thus, excessively exclusive: "Newcomers found it difficult to make friends in the insular community."
intransigent
stubborn; immovable; unwilling to change: "She was so intransigent we finally gave up trying to convince her." (n: intransigence)
irascible
prone to outbursts of temper, easily angered
laconic
using few words; terse: "a laconic reply."
latent
present or potential but not evident or active (n: latency)
laudable
praiseworthy; commendable (v. laud)
leviathan
giant whale, therefore, something very large
loquacious
talkative
lucid
clear; translucent: "He made a lucid argument to support his theory."
lugubrious
weighty, mournful, or gloomy, especially to an excessive degree: "Jake's lugubrious monologues depressed his friends."
magnanimity
generosity and nobility. (adj: magnanimous)
malevolent
malicious; evil; having or showing ill will: "Some early American colonists saw the wilderness as malevolent and sought to control it."
misanthrope
one who hates people: "He was a true misanthrope and hated even himself."
misnomer
incorrect name or word for something
misogynist
one who hates women
mitigate
to make less forceful; to become more moderate; to make less harsh or undesirable: "He was trying to mitigate the damage he had done." (n: mitigation)
nefarious
wicked, evil: "a nefarious plot."
noisome
harmful, offensive, destructive: "The noisome odor of the dump carried for miles."
obdurate
hardened against influence or feeling; intractable.
obviate
to prevent by anticipatory measures; to make unnecessary:
occlude
to close or shut off; to obstruct (n: occlusion)
opaque
not transparent or transluscent; dense; difficult to comprehend, as inopaque reasoning
ossified
turned to bone; hardened like bone; Inflexible: "The ossified culture failed to adapt to new economic conditions and died out."
panegyric
a writing or speech in praise of a person or thing
peccadillo
a small sin or fault
pedantic
showing a narrow concern for rules or formal book learning; making an excessive display of one's own learning: "We quickly tired of his pedantic conversation." (n: pedant, pedantry).
perfidious
deliberately treacherous; dishonest (n: perfidy)
petulant
easily or frequently annoyed, especially over trivial matters; childishly irritable
philanthropy
tendency or action for the benefit of others, as in donating money or property to a charitible organization
phlegmatic
not easily excited; cool; sluggish
placate
to calm or reduce anger by making concessions: "The professor tried to placate his students by postponing the exam."
plastic
related to being shaped or molded; capable of being molded. (n: plasticity n: plastic)
plethora
excessively large quantity; overabundance: "We received a p lethora of applications for the position."
ponderous
heavy; massive; awkward; dull: "A ponderous book is better than a sleeping pill."
pragmatic
concerned with facts; practical, as opposed to highly principled or traditional: "His pragmatic approach often offended idealists." (n: pragmatism)
precipice
cliff with a vertical or nearly vertical face; a dangerous place from which one is likely to fall; metaphorically, a very risky circumstance
precipitate
to fall; to fall downward suddenly and dramatically; to bring about or hasten the occurrence of something: "Old World diseases precipitated a massive decline in the American Indian population."
precursor
something (or someone) that precedes another: "The assasination of the Archduke was a precursor to the war."
prevaricate
to stray away from or evade the truth: "When we asked him what his intentions were, he prevaricated."(n: prevarication; prevaricator)
prodigal
rashly wasteful: "Americans' prodigal devotion to the automobile is unique."
propitiate
to conciliate; to appease: "They made sacrifices to propitiate angry gods."
Pulchritudinous
beautiful (n: pulchritude)
pusillanimous
cowardly, timid, or irreselute; petty: "The pusillanimous leader soon lost the respect of his people."
quiescence
inactivity; stillness; dormancy (adj: quiescent)
rarefy
to make or become thin; to purify or refine (n: rarefaction, adj: rarefied)
reproof
the act of censuring, scolding, or rebuking. (v. reprove).
rescind
to repeal or annul
sagacious
having a sharp or powerful intellect or discernment. (n: sagacity).
sanguine
cheerful; confident: "Her sanguine attitude put everyone at ease."(Sangfroid (noun) is a related French word meaning unflappibility. Literally, it means cold blood)
sate
to satisfy fully or to excess
saturnine
having a gloomy or morose temperament
savant
a very knowledgable person; a genious
sedulous
diligent; persevering; persistent: "Her sedulous devotion to overcoming her background impressed many." (n: sedulity; sedulousness; adv. sedulously)
specious
seemingly true but really false; deceptively convincing or attractive: "Her argument, though specious, was readily accepted by many."
superficial
only covering the surface: "A superficial treatment of the topic was all they wanted."
tacit
unspoken: "Katie and carmella had a tacit agreement that they would not mention the dented fender to their parents."
taciturn
habitually untalkative or silent (n: taciturnity)
temperate
exercising moderation and self-denial; calm or mild (n: temperance)
tirade (diatribe)
an angry speech: "His tirade had gone on long enough."
tortuous
twisted; excessively complicated: "Despite public complaints, tax laws and forms have become increasingly tortuous." Note: Don't confuse this with torturous.
tractable
ability to be easily managed or controlled: "Her mother wished she were more tractable." (n: tractibility)
turpitude
depravity; baseness: "Mr. Castor was fired for moral turpitude."
tyro
beginner; person lacking experience in a specific endeavor: "They easily took advantage of the tyro."
vacuous
empty; without contents; without ideas or intelligence:: "She flashed a vacuous smile."
venerate
great respect or reverence: "The Chinese traditionally venerated their ancestors; ancestor worship is merely a popular misnomer for this tradition." (n: veneration, adj: venerable)
verbose
wordy: "The instructor asked her verbose student make her paper more concise." (n: verbosity)
vex
to annoy; to bother; to perplex; to puzzle; to debate at length: "Franklin vexed his brother with his controversial writings."
viscous
slow moving; highly resistant to flow: "Heintz commercials imply that their catsup is more viscous than others'." (n: viscosity)
volatile
explosive; fickle (n: volatility).
voracious
craving or devouring large quantities of food, drink, or other things. She is a voracious reader.
waver
to hesitate or to tremble
wretched
extremely pitiful or unfortunate (n: wretch)
zeal
enthusiastic devotion to a cause, ideal, or goal (n: zealot; zealoutry. adj: zealous)