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105 Cards in this Set

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canon
noun [C usually singular] SPECIALIZED
all the writings or other works known to be by a particular person:
the Shakespearean canon
melodrama
noun [C or U]
a story, play, or film in which the characters show stronger emotions than real people usually do:
a television melodrama
heterodoxy
adjective FORMAL
(of beliefs, ideas or activities) different and in opposition to generally accepted beliefs or standards:
His opinions have always been distinctly heterodox.
avarice
noun [U] FORMAL
an extremely strong desire to obtain or keep wealth; greed:
Her business empire brought her wealth beyond the dreams of avarice (= an extremely large amount of money).
gluttony
noun [U] DISAPPROVING
when people eat and drink more than they need to:
They treat Christmas as just another excuse for gluttony.
adulation
excessive or slavish admiration or flattery
inevasible
a. Incapable of being evaded; inevitable; unavoidable.
impermeable
adjective
not allowing liquid or gas to go through:
an impermeable membrane
awning
noun [C] (US ALSO sunshade, AUSTRALIAN ENGLISH ALSO sunblind)
a cloth or plastic cover attached to a building or structure and supported by a frame which is used to protect someone or something from the sun or rain:
The gaily striped awnings of the little shops and market stalls made an attractive scene.
pestle
noun [C]
a heavy stick made of clay, stone or metal, with a thick rounded end, which is used for crushing substances in a mortar (= a small strong bowl) by hitting or rubbing them:
Crush the garlic into a paste using a pestle and mortar.
babble
verb [I or T]
to talk or say something in a quick, confused, excited or foolish way:
The children babbled excitedly among themselves.
She was babbling something about her ring being stolen.
parrot
verb [T] DISAPPROVING
to repeat exactly what someone else says, without understanding it or thinking about its meaning:
She doesn't have an original thought in her head - she just parrots anything that Sara says.
badger
verb [T]
to persuade someone by telling them repeatedly to do something, or to question someone repeatedly:
Stop badgering me - I'll do it when I'm ready.
[+ into + ing form of verb] She's been badgering me into doing some exercise.
[+ to infinitive] Every time we go into a shop, the kids badger me to buy them sweets.
persecute
verb [T]
to treat someone unfairly or cruelly over a long period of time because of their race, religion, or political beliefs or to annoy someone by refusing to leave them alone:
Religious minorities were persecuted and massacred during the ten-year regime.
His latest film is about the experience of being persecuted for being gay.
Ever since the news broke about her divorce, she has been persecuted by the tabloid press.
pry
verb [I] DISAPPROVING
to try to obtain private facts about a person:
As a reporter, I was paid to pry into other people's lives.
I hope you don't think I'm prying, but has your boyfriend ever lived with anyone before?
She wanted a private holiday away from prying eyes (= where no one would be trying to see her).
dispense
verb [T]
to prepare and give out medicine:
UK a dispensing chemist

dispensary
noun [C]
a place where medicines are prepared and given out, often in a hospital
unfettered
adjective FORMAL
not limited by rules or any other controlling influence:
In writing poetry, one is unfettered by the normal rules of sentence structure.
ballast
noun [U]
heavy matter such as sand or stone that is used at the bottom of a ship or a balloon to make it heavier, or the small stones on which railways and roads are made
truss
noun [C] SPECIALIZED
a support for a roof or bridge that is usually made of stone or brick
banister
noun [C] (ALSO banisters)
the row of poles at the side of stairs and the wooden or metal bar on top of them
barb
noun [C]
1 the sharp part which points backwards from a fish hook or arrow, making it hard to remove it from something

2 a remark that is clever but cruel and hurtful:
I tried to ignore their barbs about my new jacket.
caustic
adjective
describes a remark or way of speaking that is hurtful, critical or intentionally unkind:
caustic comments
She's famous in the office for her caustic wit.
pan
verb [T] -nn- INFORMAL
to criticize something severely:
The critics panned the film version of the novel.
belligerent
adjective
1 DISAPPROVING wishing to fight or argue:
a belligerent person
a belligerent gesture
Watch out! Lee's in a belligerent mood.
prodigal
adjective FORMAL
wasteful with money; tending to spend large amounts without thinking of the future:
There have been rumours that he has been prodigal with company funds.
obsequious
adjective FORMAL DISAPPROVING
too eager to praise or obey someone:
She is almost embarrassingly obsequious to anyone in authority.
bellwether
noun [C] MAINLY US
someone or something which shows how a situation will develop or change:
The report, which is viewed as a bellwether for economic trends, implied that the national economy could be slowing down.
submerge
1 : to put under water
2 : to cover or overflow with water
3 : to make obscure or subordinate : SUPPRESS <personal lives submerged by professional responsibilities>
intransitive verb : to go under water
tenacious
adjective
holding tightly onto something, or keeping an opinion in a determined way:
The baby took my finger in its tenacious little fist.
There has been tenacious local opposition to the new airport.
daredevil
noun [C] INFORMAL
a person who does dangerous things and takes risks
bequest
noun [C]
the money or property belonging to someone which they say that, after their death, they wish to be given to other people:
Her will included small bequests to her family, while most of her fortune went to charity.
testator
a person who dies leaving a will or testament in force
heirloom
noun [C]
a valuable object that has been given by older members of a family to younger members of the same family over many years:
This ring is a family heirloom.
besmirch
- to say bad things about someone to influence other people's opinion of them:

besmirth her reputation

- SULLY, SOIL
transgress
verb [I or T] FORMAL
to break a law or moral rule:
Those are the rules, and anyone who transgresses will be severely punished.
bigot
noun [C] DISAPPROVING
a person who has strong, unreasonable beliefs and who thinks that anyone who does not have the same beliefs is wrong:
a religious bigot
He was known to be a loud-mouthed, opinionated bigot.
turncoat
noun [C] DISAPPROVING
a person who changes from one opinion to an opposite one in a way which shows they are not loyal to people who share the original opinion
constant
adjective
describes a companion or friend who is loyal to you

constancy
noun [U] FORMAL
Never doubt the constancy of my love for you.
poseur
noun [C] (ALSO poser) DISAPPROVING
someone who pretends to be something they are not, or to have qualities that they do not possess:
You look like a real poseur in your fancy sports car with your expensive clothes!
posture
transitive verb: to cause to assume a given posture : poseintransitive verb1: to assume a posture; especially : to strike a pose for effect2: to assume an artificial or pretended attitude : attitudinize
unaffected
adjective APPROVING
natural and sincere in your behaviour:
For someone who has spent forty years in show business she remains remarkably unaffected by it all.
recluse
noun [C]
a person who lives alone and avoids going outside or talking to other people:
He is a millionaire recluse who refuses to give interviews.
gregarious
adjective
(of people) liking to be with other people, or (especially of animals) living in groups:
Emma's a gregarious, outgoing sort of person.
sonnet
noun [C]
a poem that has 14 lines and a particular pattern of rhyme
bit
noun [C]
the part of a tool used for cutting or drilling (= making holes)
foundry
noun [C]
a factory where metal is melted and poured into specially shaped containers to produce objects such as wheels and bars
blast
verb [I]
to make a very loud and unpleasant noise:
guns/music blasting (away/out)
whiff
noun [C usually singular]
1 a brief smell, carried on a current of air:
He leaned towards me and I caught/got a whiff of garlic.
During the first few months of pregnancy the slightest whiff of food cooking made my stomach turn.

2 a whiff of sth a slight sign of something:
They regularly hold elections without a whiff of corruption or violence.
arrest
verb [T] FORMAL
to attract or catch someone's attention:
A photo of a small boy arrested my attention.
odious
adjective FORMAL
extremely unpleasant; causing and deserving hate:
an odious crime
an odious little man
edifice
noun [C]
1 FORMAL a large building, especially a splendid one:
The town hall is the only edifice surviving from the fifteenth century.

2 a system which has been established for a long time:
It looks as if the whole political edifice of the country is about to collapse.
syllabus
noun [C] plural syllabuses or syllabi
(a plan showing) the subjects or books to be studied in a particular course, especially a course which leads to an examination:
Which novels are on the syllabus this year?
subjugate
1 : to bring under control and governance as a subject : CONQUER
2 : to make submissive : SUBDUE
blurb
noun [C]
a short description of a book or film, etc., written by the people who have produced it, and intended to make people want to buy it or see it:
The blurb on the back of the book says that it 'will touch your heart'.
gloss
1 a: a brief explanation (as in the margin or between the lines of a text) of a difficult or obscure word or expression b: a false and often willfully misleading interpretation (as of a text)2 a: glossary b: an interlinear translation c: a continuous commentary accompanying a text
blurt
to say something suddenly and without thinking, usually because you are excited or nervous:
He blurted everything out about the baby, though we'd agreed to keep it a secret for a while.
[+ speech] She suddenly blurted out, "I can't do it".
[+ that] Late one evening, Gianni blurted out that he loved her.
utter
verb [T] SLIGHTLY FORMAL
to say something or to make a sound with your voice:
She sat through the whole meeting without uttering a word.
flit
verb [I usually + adverb or preposition] -tt-
1 to fly or move quickly and lightly:
In the fading light we saw bats flitting around/about in the garden.
FIGURATIVE Sara finds it very difficult to settle - she's always flitting from one thing to another (= changing her activities).

2 to appear or exist suddenly and briefly in someone's mind or on their face:
A ghost of a smile flitted across his face.
blush
verb [I]
to become pink in the face, usually from embarrassment:
I always blush when I speak in public.
I blush to think of what a fool I made of myself.
bluster
1: to conduct oneself in an arrogant or superciliously pompous manner; especially : to walk with an air of overbearing self-confidence

2: boast, brag
swagger
verb [I]
to walk, especially with a swinging movement, in a way that shows that you are very confident and think that you are important, or to act in that way:
They swaggered into the room.
A group of young men swaggered about outside the bar.
His swaggering self-confidence irritates many people.
whet
verb [T] -tt- OLD USE
to sharpen the blade of a knife or similar tool:
He whetted his knife against the stone.
hoist
verb [T]
1 to lift something heavy, sometimes using ropes or a machine:
A helicopter hoisted the final section of the bridge into place.
With some difficulty he hoisted her onto his shoulders.
[R] I scrabbled for a handhold and hoisted myself up.
bombast
pretentious inflated speech or writing
pompous
adjective DISAPPROVING
too serious and full of importance:
He's a pompous old prig who's totally incapable of taking a joke.
He can sometimes sound a bit pompous when he talks about acting.
interminable
1. having or seeming to have no end; especially : wearisomely protracted

adjective
2. continuing for too long and therefore boring or annoying:
an interminable delay
We had to listen to another of his interminable stories of his days as a soldier.
munitions
plural noun
military weapons such as guns and bombs:
The army used precision-guided munitions to blow up enemy targets.
a munitions depot
a munitions factory
gourmet
noun [C]
a person who knows a lot about food and cooking, and who enjoys eating high-quality food:
a gourmet restaurant (= restaurant that has high-quality food)
bootless
USELESS, UNPROFITABLE <a bootless attempt>
futile
1 : serving no useful purpose : completely ineffective <efforts to convince him were futile>

2 : occupied with trifles : frivolous
effulgence
radiant splendor : BRILLIANCE
resplendence
adjective LITERARY
having a very bright or splendid appearance:
the queen's resplendent purple robes
I saw Anna at the other end of the room, resplendent in a red sequined cocktail dress.
clamp
noun [C]
a device, made of wood or metal, which is used to hold two things together tightly:
Carefully tighten the clamp until it firmly supports the pipette in a vertical position.
bravura
noun
1 : a musical passage requiring exceptional agility and technical skill in execution
2 : a florid brilliant style
3 : a show of daring or brilliance

adj
1 : marked by a dazzling display of skill <a bravura performance>
2 : ornate, showy
repose
verb [I usually + adverb or preposition] FORMAL
to rest or lie:
She reposed on the sofa.
breezeway
a roofed often open passage connecting two buildings (as a house and garage) or halves of a building
aphorism
noun [C]
a short clever saying which is intended to express a general truth:
Oscar Wilde was famous for such aphorisms as 'Experience is the name everyone gives to their mistakes'.
caricature
1 : exaggeration by means of often ludicrous distortion of parts or characteristics

2 : a representation especially in literature or art that has the qualities of caricature
epigram
a short saying or poem which expresses an idea in a way that is clever and amusing:
One of Oscar Wilde's most frequently quoted epigrams is "I can resist everything except temptation".
bristle
verb
1 [I] (of hair) to stand up:
The cat's fur bristled and it arched its back.

2 to react angrily:
She bristled at the suggestion that she had in any way neglected the child.
vacillate
1 a: to sway through lack of equilibrium b: fluctuate, oscillate

2: to waver in mind, will, or feeling : hesitate in choice of opinions or courses
irresolute
adjective FORMAL DISAPPROVING
not able or willing to take decisions or actions:
an irresolute reply
urbane
adjective APPROVING
(especially of a man) confident, comfortable and polite in social situations:
John Herschel was an urbane, kindly and generous man.

urbanity
noun [U] APPROVING
extenuate
verb [T] FORMAL
to cause a wrong act to be judged less seriously by giving reasons for it:
He was unable to say anything that might have extenuated his behaviour.

2 a archaic : to make thin or emaciated b : to lessen the strength or effect of
bumptious
adjective DISAPPROVING
unpleasantly confident:
a bumptious young man
garish
adjective DISAPPROVING
unpleasantly bright:
a pair of garish Bermuda shortsb
bungle
verb [T]
to do something wrong, in a careless or stupid way

adjective
What bungling idiot wired up the plug like this!
burnish
verb [T]
1 LITERARY to rub metal until it is smooth and shiny

2 If you burnish something such as your public image, you take action to improve it and make it more attractive:
The company is currently trying to burnish its socially responsible image.
lustre/luster
noun
1 [S or U] the brightness that a shiny surface has:
a treatment for restoring the lustre to dull hair
the rich lustre of well-polished furniture

2 [U] a very special, admirable and attractive quality:
The dancing of the principal ballerina added lustre to an otherwise unimpressive production of 'Giselle'.

lustrous
adjective
very shiny:
long lustrous hair
knead
verb [T]
to press something, especially a mixture for making bread, firmly and repeatedly with the hands and fingers:
Knead the dough until smooth.
nudge
verb
1 [T] to push something or someone gently, especially to push someone with your elbow (= the middle part of your arm where it bends) to attract their attention:
The children were giggling and nudging each other.
He nudged the cat off the sofa so that he could sit down.

2 [I + adverb or preposition; T] to move slowly and almost reach a higher point or level:
Oil prices continue to nudge higher.
Peter must be nudging 40 now.
buttress
noun [C]
a structure made of stone or brick, which sticks out from and supports a wall of a building
splint
noun [C]
a long flat object used as a support for a broken bone so that the bone stays in a particular position while it heals:
The doctor put a splint on the arm and bandaged it up.
cabal
noun [C] DISAPPROVING
a small group of people who plan secretly to take action, especially political action:
He was assassinated by a cabal of aides within his own regime.
cache
noun [C]
a hidden store of things, or the place where they are kept:
an arms cache
a cache of explosives/weapons/drugs
summit
1 : TOP, APEX; especially : the highest point : PEAK
2 : the topmost level attainable <the summit of human fame>
3 a : the highest level of officials; especially : the diplomatic level of heads of government b : a conference of highest-level officials (as heads of government) <an economic summit>
cacophony
harsh or discordant sound : DISSONANCE 2; specifically : harshness in the sound of words or phrases
genteel
adjective
1 having or typical of a high social class:
a genteel old lady
The mansion had an atmosphere of genteel elegance and decay.

2 being very polite, or trying too hard to seem of a higher social class than you really are:
He took elocution lessons to try to make his accent sound more genteel.

3 calm and gentle:
The game seemed to be a more genteel version of American football.
churlish
adjective
rude, unfriendly and unpleasant:
They invited me to dinner and I thought it would be churlish to refuse.
malodor
an offensive odor
gaucherie
a tactless or awkward act
cadet
noun [C]
a student in the armed forces or the police
tadpole
noun [C]
a small black creature with a large head and long tail which lives in water and develops into a frog or toad
cajole
1 a : to persuade with flattery or gentle urging especially in the face of reluctance : COAX <had to cajole them into going> b : to obtain from someone by gentle persuasion <cajoleed money from his parents>
2 : to deceive with soothing words or false promises
wheedle
1 : to influence or entice by soft words or flattery
2 : to gain or get by wheedling <wheedle one's way into favor>
intransitive verb : to use soft words or flattery
synonym see CAJOLE