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The Call of the Wild
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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apparent
8 uses
His only apparent ambition, like Dave's, was to be left alone; though, as Buck was afterward to learn, each of them possessed one other and even more vital ambition.
apparent = clear or obvious
DefinitionGenerally apparent means:
clear or obvious; or appearing as such but not necessarily so
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library55 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
belligerent
1 use
But no matter how Spitz circled, Joe whirled around on his heels to face him ... —the incarnation of belligerent fear.
belligerent = ready to fight
DefinitionGenerally belligerent means:
hostile (the attitude of one eager to fight); or one already engaged in a fight or war
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
cease
7 uses
Men gasped and began to breathe again, unaware that for a moment they had ceased to breathe.
ceased = stopped or discontinued
DefinitionGenerally cease means:
to stop or discontinue
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
coherent
1 use
Men were shaking hands, it did not matter with whom, and bubbling over in a general incoherent babel.
incoherent = not understandable (unclear)

(editor's note:  The prefix "in-" in incoherent means not and reverses the meaning of coherent. This is the same pattern you see in words like incomplete, independent, and inexpensive.)
DefinitionGenerally coherent means:
sensible and clear; or describing parts as fitting together in a consistent or pleasing manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
convey
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
convey her safely to
The next he knew, he was dimly aware that his tongue was hurting and that he was being jolted along in some kind of a conveyance.†
conveyance = carriage (means of transport)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convey means:
transport
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
daunt
2 uses
It was because nothing daunted him that he had been chosen for government courier.
daunted = discouraged or intimidated
DefinitionGenerally daunt means:
to discourage or intimidate

(editor's note: The root word is most commonly seen as the adjective daunting which describes something as "discouraging or intimidating". Note that the "-less" suffix means without, so dauntless is to daunt as hopeless is to hope and careless is to care.)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
expedient
1 use
Other men saw to the welfare of their dogs from a sense of duty and business expediency; he saw to the welfare of his as if they were his own children
expediency = an action that is speedy or practical
DefinitionGenerally expedient means:
a practical action — especially one that accepts negative tradeoffs due to circumstances

or:

convenient, speedy, or practical
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
fastidious
1 use
He swiftly lost the fastidiousness which had characterized his old life.
fastidiousness = excessively concerned with cleanliness or matters of taste
DefinitionGenerally fastidious means:
giving careful attention to detail

or:

excessively concerned with cleanliness or matters of taste
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
futile
2 uses
Francois swore strange barbarous oaths, and stamped the snow in futile rage, and tore his hair.
futile = effort that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
impede
1 use
They attached the line ... being careful that it should neither strangle him nor impede his swimming,
impede = slow or prevent
DefinitionGenerally impede means:
create difficulty so as to slow or prevent (something)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
inevitable
3 uses
It was inevitable that the clash for leadership should come.
inevitable = certain to happen
DefinitionGenerally inevitable means:
certain to happen (even if one tried to prevent it)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library21 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
innocuous
1 use
With ... Hal swearing innocuously ... they staggered into John Thornton's camp
innocuously = harmlessly
DefinitionGenerally innocuous means:
unlikely to harm or disturb
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
insidious
1 use
The insidious revolt led by Buck had destroyed the solidarity of the team.
insidious = very harmful over time
DefinitionGenerally insidious means:
not appearing dangerous, but actually very harmful over time

or:

treacherous  (dangerous due to trickery or from hidden or unpredictable risks)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
morose
2 uses
He was a gloomy, morose fellow, and he showed Curly plainly that all he desired was to be left alone
morose = unhappy — often with a withdrawn personality
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
orthodox
2 uses
So he cut down even the orthodox ration and tried to increase the day's travel.
orthodox = thinking and behavior that is (or was) commonly accepted

(editor's note:  ration in this context, is a measured share of food)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
persistent
1 use
There is a patience of the wild—dogged, tireless, persistent as life itself—that holds motionless for endless hours the spider in its web, the snake in its coils, the panther in its ambuscade; this patience belongs peculiarly to life when it hunts its living food; and it belonged to Buck as he clung to the flank of the herd, retarding its march, irritating the young bulls, worrying the cows with their half-grown calves, and driving the wounded bull mad with helpless rage.
persistent = continuing — especially despite difficulties or opposition
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
remonstrate
1 use
Mercedes continually fluttered in the way of her men and kept up an unbroken chattering of remonstrance and advice.
remonstrance = argument in protest or opposition
DefinitionGenerally remonstrate means:
argue in protest or opposition
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
resolute
1 use
He took all manner of risks, resolutely thrusting his little weazened face into the frost and struggling on from dim dawn to dark.
resolutely = with firm purpose
DefinitionGenerally resolute means:
firm in purpose or belief
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
usurp
1 use
For the last time in his life he allowed passion to usurp cunning and reason, and it was because of his great love for John Thornton that he lost his head.
usurp = seize or take control
DefinitionGenerally usurp means:
seize or take control without authority
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
zeal
1 use
And in her zeal, when she had finished with her own, she attacked the belongings of her men and went through them like a tornado.
zeal = enthusiasm
DefinitionGenerally zeal means:
active interest and enthusiasm
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
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Sample usage followed by this mark was not checked by an editor. Please let us know if you spot a problem.
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