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109 Cards in this Set

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  • Back
  • 3rd side (hint)
(uh BASH)

v. to make ashamed; to embarrass
Meredith felt abashed by her inability to remember her lines in the school chorus of "Old McDonald Had a Farm."
(uh BAYT)

v. to subside; to reduce
George spilled a pot of hot coffee on his leg. It hurt quite a bit. Then, gradually, the agony abated.
(AB duh kayt)

v. to step down from a position of power or responsibility
When King Edward VII of England decided he would rather be married to Wallis Warfield Simpson, an American divorcee, than be king of England, he turned in his crown and abdicated.
(ab uh RAY shun)

n. something not typical; a deviation from the standard
Tom's bad behavior was an aberration.
(ab HOR)

v. to hate very, very much; to detest
To abhor something is to view it with horror.
(AB jekt)

adj. hopeless; extremely sad and servile; defeated; utterly bummed out
An abject person is one who is crushed and without hope.
(AB nuh gayt)

v. to deny oneself things; to reject; to renounce
Samantha abnegated desserts for one month after getting on the scale.
(uh BOR tiv)

adj. unsuccessful
Mary and Elisabeth made an abortive effort to bake a birthday cake; that is, their effort did not result in a birthday cake.
(uh BRIJ)

v. to shorten; to condense
The thoughtful editor had abridged the massive book by removing the boring parts.
(AB suh loot)

adj. total; unlimited; perfect
An absolute ruler is one who is ruled by no one else.
(ab ZOLV)

v. to forgive or free from blame; to free from sin; to free from an obligation
The priest absolved the sinner who had come to church to confess his sin.
(AB stuh nunt)

adj. abstaining; voluntarily not doing something, especially something pleasant that is bad for you or has a bad reputation
Beulah used to be a chain smoker; now she's abstinent.
(AB strakt)

adj. theoretical; impersonal
To like something in the abstract is to like the idea of it.

adj. hard to understand
The professor's article, on the meaning of meaning, was very abstruse.
(uh BIZ mul)

adj. extremely hopeless or wretched; bottomless
The nation's debt crisis was abysmal.
(AK uh layd)

n. an award; an honor
This word is generally used in the plural.
(uh KAWST)

v. to approach and speak to someone
Is not necessarily bad.
(uh SUR bik)

adj. bitter; sour; severe
Barry sat silently as our teacher read aloud her acerbic comments on his paper.
(ak wee ES)

v. to comply passively; to accept; to assent; to agree
To acquiesce is to do something without objection--to do it quietly.

It is not possible to acquiesce noisily, enthusiastically, or eagerly.
(AK rid)

adj. harsh; like acid
Long after the fire had been put out, we could feel the acrid sting of smoke in our nostrils.
(ak ruh MOH nee us)

adj. full of spite; bitter; nasty
Relations between the competing candidates were so acrimonious that each refused to acknowledge the presence of the other.
(AK yoo mun)

n. keenness of judgement; mental sharpness
A woman who knows how to turn a dollar into a million dollars overnight might be said to have a lot of business acumen.
(uh KYOOT)

adj. sharp; shrew
An acute mind is a quick, intelligent one.
(AD uh munt)

adj. stubborn; unyielding; completely inflexible
Candice was adamant; she would never go out with Paul again.
(uh DRES)

v. to speak to; to direct one's attention to
Ernie addressed the problem of addressing the convention by sitting down and writing his speech.
(ad HEER unt)

n. follower; supporter; believer
The king's adherents threw a big birthday party for him, just to show how much they liked him.
(ad MAHN ish)

v. to scold gently; to warn

Noun = admonition
Adj = admonitory
The boys' mother admonished them not to eat the pie she had just baked. When they did so anyway, she admonished them for doing it.
(uh DROYT)

adj. skillful; dexterous; clever; shrewd; socially at ease
Comes from the French word "droit," which means "right."
(aj uh LAY shun)

n. wild or excessive admiration; flattery
The boss thrived on the adulation of his scheming secretary.
(uh DUL tuh rayt)

v. to contaminate; to make impure
Vegetarians do not like their foods adulterated with animal fats.
(ad VURS)

adj. unfavorable; antagonistic
Airplanes often don't fly in adverse weather.
(es THET ik)

adj. having to do with artistic beauty; artistic
Someone who admires beautiful things greatly can be called an aesthete (ES theet).
(AF uh bul)

adj. easy to talk to; friendly

Noun = affability
The Jeffersons' dog was big but affable.

(af ek TAY shun)

n. unnatural or artificial behavior, usually intended to impress
A person with an affectation is said to be affected.
(uh FIN uh tee)

n. sympathy; attraction; kinship; similarity
Ducks have an affinity for water; that is, they like to be in it.
(AF loo unt)

adj. rich; prosperous
Affluence means the same thing as wealth or prosperity.
(uh JEN duh)

n. program; the things to be done
An agenda, such as that for a meeting, is often written down, but it doesn't have to be.
(uh GRAR ee un)

adj. relating to land; relating to the management or farming of land
Politics in this country often pit the rural, agrarian interests against the urban interests.
(AG ruh gut)

n. sum total; a collection of separate things mixed together

Verb = aggregate (AG ruh gayt)
Chili is an aggregate of meat and beans made by aggregating meat and beans.
(ag NAHS tik)

n. one who believes that the existence of a god can be neither proven nor disproven
An agnostic doesn't believe but doesn't not believe, either.
(uh LAK ri tee)

n. cheerful eagerness or readiness to respond
David could hardly wait for his parents to leave; he carried their luggage out to the car with great alacrity.
(uh LEJ)

v. to assert without proof
To allege something is to assert it without proving it. Such an assertion is called an allegation.
(uh LEE vee ayt)

v. to relieve, usually temporarily or incompletely; to make bearable; to lessen
Aspirin alleviates headache pain.
(Al uh kayt)

v. to distribute; to assign; to allot
The office manager had allocated just seven paper clips for our entire department.
(AL loy)

n. a combination of two or more things, usually metals

Verb = alloy (uh LOY) To alloy two things is to mix them together. There is usually an implication that there is something undesirable or debased about an alloy (as opposed to a pure substance).
Brass is an alloy of copper and zinc.
(uh LOO zhun)

n. an indirect reference (often to a literary work); a hint
An allusion is an allusion only if the source isn't identified directly.
(uh LOOF)

adj. uninvolved; standing off; keeping one's distance
Al, on the roof, felt very aloof.
(AL troo iz um)

n. selflessness; generosity; devotion to the interests of others
To be altruistic is to help others without expectation of personal gain.
(AM bee uns)

n. atmosphere; mood; feeling

adjective = ambient (surrounding or circulating)
A restaurant's ambience is the look, mood, and feel of the place.
(am BIG yoo us)

adj. unclear in meaning; confusing; capable of being interpreted in different ways
The poem we read in English class was ambiguous; no one had any idea what the poet was trying to say.
(am BIV uh lunt)

adj. undecided; neutral; wishy-washy
Susan felt ambivalent about George as a boyfriend. Her frequent desire to break up with him reflected this ambivalence.
(uh MEEL yuh rayt)

v. to make better or more tolerable
The condition of the prisoners was ameliorated when the warden gave them color television sets and keys to their cells.
(uh MEE nuh bul)

adj. obedient; willing to give in to the wishes of another; agreeable
The plumber was amenable to my paying my bill with jelly beans.
(uh MEN i tee)

adj. pleasantness; attractive or comfortable feature
The amenities at the local club include a swimming pool, a golf course, and a fallout shelter.
(AY mee uh bul)

adj. friendly; agreeable
Our amiable guide made us feel right at home in what would otherwise have been a cold and forbidding museum.
(AM nuh stee)

n. an official pardon for a group of people who have violated a law or policy
Always refers to a pardon given to a group or class of people. A pardon granted to a single person is simply a pardon.
(ay MOR ul)

adj. lacking a sense of right and wrong; neither good nor bad, neither moral nor immoral; without moral feelings
A moral person does right; an immoral person does wrong; an amoral person simply does.
(AM ur us)

adj. feeling loving, especially in a sexual sense; in love; relating to love
The amorous couple made quite a scene at the movie.
(uh MOR fus)

adj. shapeless; without a regular or stable shape; bloblike
Ed's teacher said that his term paper was amorphous.
(un NAK ruh niz um)

n. something out of place in time or history; an incongruity
In this day of impersonal hospitals, a family doctor who will visit you at home seems like an anachronism.
(uh NAL uh jee)

n. a comparison of one thing to another; similarity
Analogy usually refers to similarities between things that are not otherwise very similar.
(AN ur kee)

n. absence of government or control; lawlessness; disorder
The country fell into a state of anarchy after the rebels kidnapped the president and locked the legislature inside the Capitol.
(AN ik doht)

n. a short account of a humorous or revealing incident
Fred told an anecdote about the time Sally got her big toe stuck in a bowling ball.
(ANG gwish)

n. agonizing physical or mental pain
Theresa had been a nurse in the ER for 20 years, but she had never gotten used to the anguish of accident victims.
(an uh MAHS uh tee)

n. resentment; hostility; ill will
A person whose look could kill is a person whose animosity is evident.
(uh NAHM uh lee)

n. an aberration; an irregularity; a deviation
A snowy winter day is not an anomaly, but a snowy July day is.
(an tuh SEED unt)

n. someone or something that went before; something that provides a model for something that came after it
The horse-drawn wagon is an antecedent of the modern automobile.

Antecedent can also be used as an adjective.
(an TIP uh thee)

n. firm dislike; a dislike
I feel antipathy toward bananas wrapped in ham.

(an TITH uh sis)

n. the direct opposite
Erin is the antithesis of Erika.
(uh PAHRT hayt)

n. the abhorrent policy of racial segregation and oppression in the Republic of South Africa
Under apartheid in South Africa, blacks are kept apart from whites and denied all rights.
(AP uh thee)

n. lack of interest; lack of feeling
Jill didn't care one bit about current events; she was entirely apathetic.
(AF uh riz um)

n. a brief, often witty saying; a proverb
Benjamin Franklin was fond of aphorisms. He was frequently aphoristic.
(uh PAHK uh lips)

n. a prophetic revelation, especially one concerning the end of the world
To make predictions of the apocalypse, or to be deeply pessimistic, is to be apocalyptic (uh pahk uh LIP tik).
(uh POK ruh ful)

n. of dubious authenticity; fictitious; spurious
An apocryphal story is one whose truth is not proven or whose falsehood is strongly suspected.

The Apocrypha are a number of "extra" books of the Old Testament that Protestants and Jews don't include in their Bibles because they don't think they're authentic.
(uh pahth ee OH sis)

n. elevation to divine status; the perfect example of something
Geoffrey thinks he's the apotheosis of masculinity.
(uh PEEZ)

v. to soothe; to pacify by giving in to

Noun = appeasement
We appeased the angry juvenile delinquents by permitting them to slash the tires of Jerry's father's car.
(uh PREE shee ayt)

v. to increase in value
His hope was that the tins would appreciate over the next few years, enabling him to turn a profit by selling them to someone else.
(ap ruh HEN siv)

adj. worried; anxious
The apprehensive child clung to his father's leg as the two of them walked into the main circus tent to watch the lion tamer.
(ap ruh BAY shun)

n. approval; praise
The crowd expressed its approbation of what the team had done by gleefully covering the field with chicken carcasses.
(uh PROH pree ayt)

v. to take without permission; to set aside for a particular use
When Congress decides to buy some new subarmines, it appropriates money for them.
(AP tuh tood)

n. capacity for learning; natural ability
Princeton Review students have a marked aptitude for taking the SAT. They earn high scores.
(AHR buh tur)

n. one who decides; a judge
An arbiter of fashion is someone who determines what other people will wear by wearing it herself.
(AHR buh trer ee)

adj. random; capricious
The old judge was arbitrary in sentencing criminals; there was no sensible pattern to the sentences he handed down.
(ahr KAYN)

adj. mysterious; known only to a select few
The arcane formula for the cocktail was scrawled in blood on a faded scrap of paper.
(ahr KAY ik)

adj. extremely old; ancient; outdated
Archaic civilizations are ones that disappeared a long time ago.
(AHR kuh type)

n. an original model or pattern
An archetype is usually something that precedes something else. Plator is the archetype of all philosophers.
(AHR dunt)

adj. passionate
Larry's ardent wooing finally got on Cynthia's nerves.

To be ardent is to have ardor.
(AHR joo us)

adj. hard; difficult
Climbing the mountain was arduous.
(uh ris tuh KRAT ik)

adj. of noble birth; snobbish
A person with an "aristocratic bearing" is a person who keeps his or her nose in the air and looks down on everyone else.
(AHRT ful)

adj. crafty; wily; sly
After dinner, the artful counselor told the campers that there was a madman loose in the woods, thus causing them to lie quietly in the tent.
(AHRT uh fus)

n. a clever trick; cunning
The Trojan Horse was an artifice designed to get the soldiers inside the walls.
(uh SEN dun see)

n. supremacy; domination
Small computers have been in ascendancy for the past few years.
(uh SET ik)

adj. hermitlike; practicing self-denial
The college professor's apartment, which contained no furniture except a single tattered mattress, was uncomfortably ascetic.
(uh SIJ oo us)

adj. hardworking; busy; quite diligent
The workmen were assiduous in their effort to get nothing done; instead of working, they drank coffee all day long.
(uh SIM uh layt)

v. to take in; to absorb; to learn thoroughly
To assimilate an idea is to take it in as thoroughly as if you had eaten it.
(uh SWAYJ)

v. to soothe; to pacify; to ease the pain of; to relieve
Beth was extremely angry, but I assuaged her by promising to leave the house and never return.
(uh STOOT)

adj. shrewd; keen in judgment
Morris was an astute judge of character; he was very good at seeing what people are really like.
(uh TRISH un)

n. gradual wearing away, weakening, or loss; a natural or expected decrease in numbers or size
Mr. Gregory preferred to lose workers through attrition when they moved away, retired, or decided to change jobs.
(aw DAS uh tee)

n. boldness; reckless daring; impertinence
Edgar's soaring leap off the top of the building was an act of great audacity.
(awg MENT)

v. to make bigger; to add to; to increase
The army augmented its attack by sending in a few thousand more soldiers.
(aw SPISH us)

adj. favorable; promising; pointing to a good result
A clear sky in the morning is an auspicious sign on the day of a picnic.
(aw STEER)

adj. unadorned; stern; forbidding; without excess
The Smiths' house was very austere; there was no furniture in it, and there was nothing hanging on the walls.
(aw tuh KRAT ik)

adj. ruling with absolute authority; extremely bossy
The ruthless dictator's autocratic reign ended when the rebels blew up his palace with a few thousand pounds of plastic explosive.
(aw TAHN uh mus)

adj. acting independently
An autonomous nation is one that is independent--it governs itself.
(AV ur is)

n. greed; excessive love of riches
The rich man's avarice was annoying to everyone who wanted to lay hands on some of his money.
(uh VOW)

v. to claim; to declare boldly; to admit
To avow something is to declare or admit something that most people are reluctant to declare or admit.
(uh VUNG kyuh lar)

adj. like an uncle, especially a nice uncle
(uh RYE)

adj. off course; twisted to one side
The hunter's bullet went awry. Instead of hitting the bear, it hit another hunter.
(AK see um)

n. a self-evident rule or truth; a widely accepted saying
An axiom in geometry is a rule that doesn't have to be proved, because its truth is accepted as obvious, self-evident, or unprovable.