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Alice's Adventures in Wonderland
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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commotion
1 use
For the Mouse was swimming away from her as hard as it could go, and making quite a commotion in the pool as it went.†
commotion = noisy disturbance
DefinitionGenerally commotion means:
a disturbance — typically noisy
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
condemn
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
was condemned to life in prison
I'll try the whole cause, and condemn you to death.
condemn = sentence (assign legal punishment)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of condemn means:
force into an undesired activity or situation — such as to legally sentence someone to punishment

or:

find guilty — especially in court

or:

provide the means of finding guilty
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
constant
2 uses
And certainly there was a most extraordinary noise going on within—a constant howling and sneezing, and every now and then a great crash, as if a dish or kettle had been broken to pieces.†
constant = unchanging, continuous, or happening repeatedly
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library55 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
deride
1 use
'Reeling and Writhing, of course, to begin with,' the Mock Turtle replied; 'and then the different branches of Arithmetic—Ambition, Distraction, Uglification, and Derision.'†
derision = disrespect — typically while laughing at or making fun of
DefinitionGenerally deride means:
laugh at or make fun of—while showing a lack of respect
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 9
Web Links
despair
1 use
Alice had no idea what to do, and in despair she put her hand in her pocket, and pulled out a box of comfits, (luckily the salt water had not got into it), and handed them round as prizes.
despair = desperation (feeling extreme worry)
DefinitionGenerally despair means:
hopelessness
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library27 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
direct   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 4 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
depart directly
So she swallowed one of the cakes, and was delighted to find that she began shrinking directly.†
directly = immediately
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
without delay, or in the quickest manner, or without going somewhere else first
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
directed her question to
'It isn't directed at all,' said the White Rabbit; 'in fact, there's nothing written on the OUTSIDE.'†
directed = addressed (written to)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
to indicate direction; or to cause movement or focus in a direction or towards an object
The exact meaning of this sense of direct is subject to its context. For example:
  • "intentionally directed fire at unarmed civilians" — aimed a gun
  • "directed the question to her" — aimed a question
  • "directed her north" — pointed in a particular direction
  • "directed attention to the 3rd paragraph" — focused attention on a particular object
  • "The sound of her voice directed him to the kitchen." — guided or gave directions to someone to help them move to a particular place
  • "She directed him to the airport." — gave directions to send someone to a particular place
  • "She directed the boat north." — steered it
  • "directed the letter to" — send a letter to a particular person by putting a name and address on it
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library31 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
dismay
1 use
"Oh, I BEG your pardon!" she exclaimed in a tone of great dismay,
dismay = upset (by her error)
DefinitionGenerally dismay means:
to feel sadness, disappointment, or worry — typically in response to something surprising
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
fidget
1 use
Here the Queen put on her spectacles, and began staring at the Hatter, who turned pale and fidgeted.
fidgeted = made small restless movements
DefinitionGenerally fidget means:
make small restless movements
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
however
20 uses
1  —20 uses as in:
However, complications may...
'Cheshire Puss,' she began, rather timidly, as she did not at all know whether it would like the name: however, it only grinned a little wider.†
however = though (used to connect contrasting ideas)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of however means:
though (or another expression that connects contrasting ideas)

(Based on idea 1 we might not expect idea 2, but this is a way of saying that even though idea 1 exists, we still have idea 2.  Synonyms include in spite of that, , nevertheless, nonetheless, on the other hand, in contrastand but.)
Word Statistics
Book20 uses
Library53 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
inquire
1 use
"What was that?" inquired Alice.
inquired = asked
DefinitionGenerally inquire means:
to ask about or look into something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library20 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 9
Web Links
morsel
1 use
Her chin was pressed so closely against her foot, that there was hardly room to open her mouth; but she did it at last, and managed to swallow a morsel of the lefthand bit.†
morsel = a very small quantity
DefinitionGenerally morsel means:
a very small quantity — usually of food
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
positive
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
I'm absolutely positive!
Indeed, she had quite a long argument with the Lory, who at last turned sulky, and would only say, 'I am older than you, and must know better'; and this Alice would not allow without knowing how old it was, and, as the Lory positively refused to tell its age, there was no more to be said.†
positively = absolutely (used for emphasis)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of positive means:
certain (having no doubt; or used for emphasis)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library17 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
provoke
1 use
it was very provoking to find that...
provoking = causing an emotional reaction
DefinitionGenerally provoke means:
to cause a reaction — typically an emotional reaction such as anger; and sometimes caused intentionally
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
Shakespeare
1 use
This question the Dodo could not answer without a great deal of thought, and it sat for a long time with one finger pressed upon its forehead (the position in which you usually see Shakespeare, in the pictures of him), while the rest waited in silence.†
Shakespeare = author widely regarded as the greatest in the English language and whose works include Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet
DefinitionGenerally this sense of Shakespeare means:
English dramatist and poet frequently cited as the greatest writer in the English language and who wrote such words as Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet (1564-1616)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
tempered
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
short-tempered
Soup does very well without—Maybe it's always pepper that makes people hot-tempered,' she went on, very much pleased at having found out a new kind of rule, 'and vinegar that makes them sour—and camomile that makes them bitter—and—and barley-sugar and such things that make children sweet-tempered.†
sweet-tempered = not easily angered or upset
DefinitionGenerally this sense of tempered means:
having a typical mood or temperament — often in reference to how easily one is angered
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 9
Web Links
therefore
1 use
Therefore I'm mad.'†
therefore = for that reason
DefinitionGenerally therefore means:
for that reason (what follows is so because of what was just said)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
usurp
1 use
William the Conqueror, whose cause was favoured by the pope, was soon submitted to by the English, who wanted leaders, and had been of late much accustomed to usurpation and conquest.
usurpation = the act of seizing or taking control without authority
DefinitionGenerally usurp means:
seize or take control without authority
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
vulgar
1 use
nasty, low, vulgar things!
vulgar = of bad taste — often crude or offensive
DefinitionGenerally vulgar means:
of bad taste — often crude or offensive

or:

unsophisticated (or common) — especially of taste
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
wretched
2 uses
'Well, I should like to be a LITTLE larger, sir, if you wouldn't mind,' said Alice: 'three inches is such a wretched height to be.'†
wretched = very bad
DefinitionGenerally wretched means:
very bad
in various senses, including:
  • unfortunate or miserable — as in "wretched prisoners sleeping on the cold floor"
  • of poor quality — as in "wretched roads"
  • morally bad — as in "The wretched woman stole his wallet.
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
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