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equivocal
used in a sentence

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Definition unclear in meaning — especially where opposing interpretations are reasonable (sometimes intentionally)

The form unequivocal (not equivocal; or clean in meaning) is encountered much more frequently, but equivocal is seen on many more SAT review lists.
  • Her statement was equivocal.
equivocal = unclear in meaning — especially where opposing interpretations are reasonable (sometimes intentionally)
  • an unequivocal statement
  • (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • His statement of support was painfully equivocal.
  • I appreciated his unequivocal support.
  • (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • an unequivocal success
  • (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • I am concerned about his equivocal reputation.
  • I am comforted by his unequivocal reputation.
  • (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • What an equivocal companion is this!
    William Shakespeare  --  All's Well That Ends Well
  • equivocal = ambiguous or doubtful
  • He was the one person I could count on, unequivocally, to say exactly what he meant, no hedging around.
    Sarah Dessen  --  The Truth About Forever
  • unequivocally = without ambiguity (in a completely clear manner)
    (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocally means not and reverses the meaning of equivocally. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • ...leaving me with no unequivocal answers about cheerleaders and their diet aids or...
    Ellen Hopkins  --  Glass
  • unequivocal = unmistakably clear
    (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • I learned, moreover, at intervals, and through broken and equivocal hints, another singular feature of his mental condition.
    Edgar Allan Poe  --  The Fall of the House of Usher
  • equivocal = unclear in meaning
  • [Laughing equivocally.]
    Henrik Ibsen  --  Hedda Gabler
  • equivocally = with meaning that is not clear
  • These sentences, to sugar or to gall,
    Being strong on both sides, are equivocal:
    William Shakespeare  --  Othello, the Moor of Venice
  • equivocal = unclear in meaning — especially where opposing interpretations are reasonable
  • But the cause of death—unequivocally—was drowning.
    David Guterson  --  Snow Falling on Cedars
  • unequivocally = clearly and unmistakably
    (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocally means not and reverses the meaning of equivocally. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • I experienced a sentiment half of horror, half of remorse, for the crime of which I had been guilty; but it was, at best, a feeble and equivocal feeling, and the soul remained untouched.
    Edgar Allan Poe  --  The Black Cat
  • equivocal = of doubtful significance (not clearly and strongly felt in the normal sense)
  • ...the day would have been an unequivocal success had nothing else happened; but something else did.
    Kate Douglas Wiggin  --  Rebecca Of Sunnybrook Farm
  • (editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unequivocal means not and reverses the meaning of equivocal. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
  • the evidence from bacteriologic analysis was equivocal
  • Jos had always had rather a mean opinion of the Captain, and now began to think his courage was somewhat equivocal.
    Thackeray, William Makepeace  --  Vanity Fair
  • This unspoken converging of minds, equivocal though it was on Martin's part, resulted gradually in a more friendly period.
    Haldeman, Julius Mr. and Mrs.  --  Dust
  • What an equivocal companion is this!
    Shakespeare, William  --  All's Well that End's Well

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