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A Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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aesthetic
31 uses
It was not aesthetically pleasing.
aesthetically = in a manner that is beautiful or tasteful
DefinitionGenerally aesthetic means:
related to beauty or good taste — often referring to one's appreciation of beauty or one's sense of what is beautiful

or:

beautiful or tasteful
Word Statistics
Book31 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
complacent
1 use
He had become complacent after years of success.
complacent = contented (unworried and satisfied) — often to a fault
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
contrite
5 uses
She apologized, but didn't seem genuinely contrite.
contrite = feeling sorrow or regret for a fault or offense
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
defer
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
deferred the decision
The weather forced us to defer our departure another day.
defer = postpone or delay
DefinitionGenerally this sense of defer means:
postpone (hold off until a later time)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
disdain
3 uses
She tries to be polite, but cannot hide her disdain for authority.
disdain = lack of respect
DefinitionGenerally disdain means:
a lack of respect — often suggesting distaste and an undeserved sense of superiority

or:

to reject as not good enough
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
divine   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 4 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
to forgive is divine
Her pies are divine.
divine = wonderful
DefinitionGenerally this sense of divine means:
wonderful; or god-like or coming from God
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
divined from tea leaves
She claims she can divine the future with a crystal ball.
divine = to predict or discover something supernaturally (as if by magic)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
3  —1 use as in:
divined through intuition
They are trying to divine the outcome of next year's election.
divine = to discover something — usually through intuition or reflection
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
engender
1 use
The police in Mexico don't engender confidence.
engender = cause
DefinitionGenerally engender means:
cause — usually a feeling (possibly a situation)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
heresy
10 uses
It is a hardline form of Sunni Islam that condemns all other strains as heresy.
heresy = something immoral
DefinitionGenerally heresy means:
opinions or actions most people consider immoral
Word Statistics
Book10 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
lucid
4 uses
Although she was on heavy pain medication, she was still lucid.
lucid = capable of thinking clearly
DefinitionGenerally lucid means:
of a person:  capable of thinking clearly

or:

of language:  clearly expressed so it is easily understood
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
novel
1 use
We're looking for novel advertising ideas.
novel = new and original
DefinitionGenerally this sense of novel means:
new and original — typically something considered good
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
obscure   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —1 use as in:
it obscured my view
The stars are obscured by the clouds.
obscured = hidden or made less visible
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
the view or directions are obscure
For some obscure reason that goes back many years, they don't like each other.
obscure = not clearly understood
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not clearly seen, understood, or expressed
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
penitent
8 uses
When her anger passed, she was penitent.
penitent = sorry for having done wrong
DefinitionGenerally penitent means:
feeling or expressing sorrow for having done wrong; or a person who does such
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
pious
19 uses
1  —19 uses as in:
a good, pious woman
The cartoon with a drawing of Muhammad outraged many pious Muslims.
pious = highly religious
DefinitionGenerally this sense of pious means:
religious or highly moral
Word Statistics
Book19 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
repentance
26 uses
Prisoners who show repentance are more likely to be released on parole.
repentance = regret for having done wrong with a desire to be a better person in the future
DefinitionGenerally repentance means:
the feeling or expression of regret for having done something wrong with a firm decision to be a better person in the future
Word Statistics
Book26 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
scrupulous
4 uses
You can count on her. She is scrupulous in her work.
scrupulous = careful to behave ethically and/or diligently
DefinitionGenerally scrupulous means:
careful to behave ethically and/or diligently (with great care and attention to detail)
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
subtle
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a subtle poison
She is working subtly against us.
subtly = working in an indirect or hidden way
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
venerate
1 use
Most contemporary Hindus do not actually worship the cow; though many venerate her.
venerate = regard with feelings of respect and reverence
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
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