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vocabulary
1000+ books

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
SATtop 2000
1st useChapter 5
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 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
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
SATtop 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 uses
Library4 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 uses
Library4 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 uses
Library1 uses 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
Jesuit
21 uses
The University of Detroit Jesuit High School and Academy is an outstanding college-prep school.
Jesuit = a member of the Society of Jesus (known for their schools and missionary work)
Word Statistics
Book21 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
languid
9 uses
No urging could increase his languid pace.
languid = slow (lacking energy or relaxed)
DefinitionGenerally languid means:
lacking energy or relaxed or moving slowly
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
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 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 500
1st useChapter 2
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
The cartoon with a drawing of Muhammad outraged many pious Muslims.
pious = highly religious
DefinitionGenerally pious means:
behaving in a highly moral or religious manner

or less commonly:  behaving highly moral in a self-righteous or holier-than-thou manner
Word Statistics
Book19 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
prodigal
1 use
The rainforest is filled with a prodigal variety of vegetation.
prodigal = abundant (many, many kinds)
DefinitionGenerally prodigal means:
recklessly wasteful

or more rarely:

abundant (extravagant in amount)

or more rarely still:

long absent (someone who has been away a long time)
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
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
sloth
6 uses
It is difficult to change the habit of sloth.
sloth = laziness
DefinitionGenerally sloth means:
laziness (an unwillingness to work or exert oneself)

or:

a type of animal that seldom moves and is typically very slow when it does move
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
squalor
5 uses
To meet her today, you would never guess she lived in squalor as a child.
squalor = filth — especially a place that is extremely dirty and unpleasant
DefinitionGenerally squalor means:
(describing a place) extremely dirty and unpleasant
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library1 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 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
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