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Far from the Madding Crowd
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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countenance
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a pleasant countenance
with grim countenances
countenances = facial expressions
DefinitionGenerally this sense of countenance means:
facial expression; or face; or composure
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
credulous
1 use
A man is never more credulous than in receiving favourable opinions on the beauty of a woman he is half, or quite, in love with;
credulous = willing to believe
DefinitionGenerally credulous means:
gullible (being too willing to believe)
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 16-18
Web Links
deride
3 uses
A low gurgle of derisive laughter followed the words.
derisive = treating as inferior and unworthy of respect
DefinitionGenerally deride means:
laugh at or make fun of—while showing a lack of respect
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 31-33
Web Links
discern
14 uses
Though the overshadowing trees ... enveloped them in gloom, Bathsheba could see plainly enough to discern the extreme poverty of the woman's garb, and the sadness of her face.
discern = noticed something that is not that easy to see
DefinitionGenerally discern means:
to notice or understand something — often something that is not obvious
Word Statistics
Book14 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePref.
Web Links
disdain
3 uses
"Very well—you keep it, Coggan," said Gabriel with disdain
disdain = a 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 4-6
Web Links
dragoon
5 uses
When I got to Casterbridge Barracks, they said, 'The Eleventh Dragoon-Guards be gone away, and new troops have come.'
dragoon = a member of a European military unit formerly composed of heavily armed cavalrymen

or:

force someone to do something; or subjugate by imposing troops
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10-12
Web Links
dubious
4 uses
"I don't see that 'tis any business of ours," Smallbury murmured dubiously.
dubiously = doubtfully
DefinitionGenerally dubious means:
doubtful — such as:
  • uncertain that something can be relied upon
  • uncertain about the quality or wisdom of something
  • a relatively gentle way of saying that the quality of something described as good is in such doubt that it is considered bad
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
incipient
5 uses
His incipient friendship with her aunt had been nipped by the failure of his suit, and all that Oak learnt of Bathsheba's movements was done indirectly.
incipient = beginning to come into existence
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
novel
1 use
Bathsheba's adventurous spirit was beginning to find some grains of relish in these highly novel proceedings.
novel = pleasantly 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 28-30
Web Links
obscure   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 8 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
it obscured my view
That he was not beloved had hitherto been his great sorrow; that Bathsheba was getting into the toils was now a sorrow greater than the first, and one which nearly obscured it.
obscured = hid (in this case, something was so important that something else was hardly seen)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 2000
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
2  —3 uses as in:
the view or directions are obscure
It was on the obscure side of the tower, screened to a great extent from the view of passers along the road—a spot which until lately had been abandoned to heaps of stones and bushes of alder, but now it was cleared and made orderly for interments, by reason of the rapid filling of the ground elsewhere.
obscure = not typically seen
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not clearly seen, understood, or expressed
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 2000
1st useChapter 16-18
Web Links
3  —2 uses as in:
knows the famous and the obscure
Turning down an obscure street and entering an obscurer lane, he went up to a smith's shop.
obscure = not known to many people; or undistinguished
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not known to many people; or unimportant or undistinguished
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 2000
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
?  —1 use
exact meaning not specified
or not quizzed
parish
35 uses
Hardly anybody in the parish knows the news yet.
parish = a local church community
DefinitionGenerally parish means:
a local church community

or in Louisiana:  a jurisdiction of government like a county
Word Statistics
Book35 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7-9
Web Links
perplex
13 uses
Bathsheba regarded him with round-eyed perplexity.
perplexity = confusion due to complexity
DefinitionGenerally perplex means:
to confuse
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
resolve   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 15 uses
1  —14 uses as in:
I resolved to stop drinking.
She resolved never again, by look or by sign, to interrupt the steady flow of this man's life.
resolved = decided
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
to decide — typically a firm or formal decision
Word Statistics
Book14 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
Her resolve weakened.
But a manly resolve to recognize boldly that he had no longer a lover's interest in her, helped him occasionally to conceal a feeling.
resolve = determination (firmness of purpose)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
firmness of purpose (strong determination to do something)
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 22-24
Web Links
stoic
4 uses
She suddenly felt a longing desire to speak to some one stronger than herself, and so get strength to sustain ... her lurking doubts with stoicism.
stoicism = to be unaffected by emotions (in this case, worry)
DefinitionGenerally stoic means:
seeming unaffected by pleasure, pain, or emotions
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 43-45
Web Links
superfluous
7 uses
The dog took no notice, for he had arrived at an age at which all superfluous barking was cynically avoided as a waste of breath
superfluous = more than is needed
DefinitionGenerally superfluous means:
more than is needed, desired, or required
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
trifle with   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 20 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
trifle with her affections
I don't trifle with him; but then, I have nothing to do with him.
trifle with = treat thoughtlessly or without respect (in this case, probably to be playful without regard for his affections)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of trifle with means:
to treat somebody or something thoughtlessly or without respect
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 28-30
Web Links
2  —16 uses as in:
a trifling matter
a trifle more than nothing.
trifle = little
DefinitionGenerally this sense of trifling means:
something of small importance; or a small quantity
Word Statistics
Book16 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10-12
Web Links
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