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vocabulary
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Heart of Darkness
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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allude
5 uses
He alluded to Susan without mentioning her name.
alluded = indirectly referenced
DefinitionGenerally allude means:
to make an indirect reference
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
appalling
8 uses
The live in appalling conditions.
appalling = shockingly terrible or horrible
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
ascetic
1 use
The ascetic life has been more pronounced in Hinduism and Buddhism than in other major religions.
ascetic = the practice of self-denial
DefinitionGenerally ascetic means:
someone who practices self-denial (often to encourage spiritual growth); or relating to such self-denial

or:

severely plain (without decoration)
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
contempt
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
feels contempt towards him
Familiarity breeds contempt.
contempt = lack of respect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contempt means:
lack of respect — often accompanied by a feeling of intense dislike or disgust
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
defer
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
deferred to her wishes
I defer to her expertise.
defer = submit or yield
DefinitionGenerally this sense of defer means:
submit or yield (typically to another person's opinion because of respect for that person or their knowledge)
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
digress
1 use
She always digresses when telling a story.
digresses = wanders from a direct or straight course — especially verbally
DefinitionGenerally digress means:
wander from a direct or straight course — especially verbally
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
disparage
1 use
She has a reputation for disparaging the efforts of her co-workers.
disparaging = criticizing or making seem less important
DefinitionGenerally disparage means:
to criticize or make seem less important — especially in a disrespectful or contemptuous manner
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SATtop 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
eloquent
9 uses
Her eloquence is unquestioned even amongst those who disagree with her.
eloquence = the powerful use of language
DefinitionGenerally eloquent means:
powerful use of language
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
exalt
5 uses
I'm looking for a small liberal-arts college that exalts the undergraduate experience.
exalts = prizes, honors, or glorifies
DefinitionGenerally exalt means:
elevate with praise, glorify, or honor

or:

fill with sublime emotion
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
futile
4 uses
It was a futile effort that was doomed form the start.
futile = effort that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
guile
1 use
Her cleverness and inventiveness was exceeded only by her guile.
guile = cunning (shrewdness and cleverness) and deceit
DefinitionGenerally guile means:
cunning (shrewdness and cleverness) and deceitful
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
languid
6 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
Book6 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
luminous
5 uses
The sky was luminous with stars.
luminous = glowing or shining
DefinitionGenerally luminous means:
glowing or shining

(also used metaphorically to describe beauty or intelligence)
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
ominous
8 uses
I'm beginning to hear ominous rumblings of discontent.
ominous = threatening (suggestive of, or foreshadowing bad things to come)
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
philanthropy
2 uses
Her primary interests are family and philanthropy.
philanthropy = helping others
DefinitionGenerally philanthropy means:
helping others — especially donating money to worthy causes; or an organization that does so
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
pretense
4 uses
The country maintains a pretense of a free press.
pretense = an appearance to help pretend
DefinitionGenerally pretense means:
an appearance or action to help one pretend
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
profound
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
profound sadness
Her apology was heartfelt—expressing profound sorrow and regret.
profound = of greatest intensity or emotional depth
Word Statistics
Book1 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
prudent
3 uses
She was promoted to manager because she is so prudent.
prudent = sensible and careful
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
serene
4 uses
While I lie awake worrying, she sleeps serenely.
serenely = calmly and peacefully
DefinitionGenerally serene means:
calm and untroubled
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
somber
11 uses
Before she said anything, I knew it was bad news from her somber face.
somber = grave or gloomy
DefinitionGenerally somber means:
serious and without cheer — perhaps even gloomy

or:

lacking brightness or color
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
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