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The Brothers Karamazov
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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ascetic
8 uses
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
Book8 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
austere
7 uses
He took a vow of silence and leads an austere life at the monastery.
austere = lacking luxury (and stern)
DefinitionGenerally austere means:
a notable absence of luxury, comfort, or decoration

or:

of a person:  stern in manner; or practicing great self-denial
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
candid
3 uses
Don't worry about my feelings. I'd like your candid opinion.
candid = honest and direct
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
capricious
9 uses
Nothing seems more capricious than a tornado.
capricious = impulsive or unpredictable
DefinitionGenerally capricious means:
impulsive or unpredictable or tending to make sudden changes — especially impulsive behavior
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
complacent
5 uses
He had become complacent after years of success.
complacent = contented (unworried and satisfied) — often to a fault
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
contempt
17 uses
1  —17 uses as in:
feels contempt towards her
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
Book17 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
contrary   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 77 uses
1  —13 uses as in:
a contrary idea
The facts point to a contrary conclusion.
contrary = different (perhaps opposite or mutually exclusive)
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
contrary to
Contrary to popular belief, the largest pyramid is in Mexico—not Egypt.
contrary to = in opposition to
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
3  —62 uses as in:
on the contrary
She was not smiling. On the contrary, she frowned.
on the contrary = an expression used to intensify denial of an idea
Word Statistics
Book62 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
disdain
15 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
Book15 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
enigma
12 uses
As Churchill said about Russia, it is a riddle, wrapped in a mystery, inside an enigma.
enigma = something mysterious that seems unexplainable
Word Statistics
Book12 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
establish   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 11 uses
1  —8 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
Which word choice best maintains the tone established in the first paragraph?
established = created
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library22 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
2  —3 uses as in:
establish that there is a need
The passage is primarily about establishing the relationship between the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and global temperature.
establishing = showing or demonstrating
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
show or determine (cause to be recognized or figure out)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
heresy
9 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
Book9 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
impetuous
6 uses
She regretted her impetuous promise.
impetuous = impulsive (made suddenly without much thought)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of impetuous means:
impulsive (acting suddenly without much thought) — often with an unfortunate consequence
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
obstinate
13 uses
She is an obstinate child who will not follow the family rules.
obstinate = stubbornly not doing what others want
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
orthodox
10 uses
The new findings challenge orthodox views.
orthodox = standard (adhering to what is commonly accepted)
DefinitionGenerally orthodox means:
thinking and behavior that is (or was) commonly accepted
Word Statistics
Book10 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
philanthropy
6 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
Book6 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
refute
3 uses
The speaker refuted his opponent's arguments.
refuted = proved or argued that something is false
DefinitionGenerally refute means:
to prove or argue that something is false
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
scoundrel
90 uses
He's a scoundrel. Don't trust him.
scoundrel = someone without moral principles
Word Statistics
Book90 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
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