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Gone with the Wind
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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apathy
6 uses
Love can't change to apathy in a minute.
apathy = lack of interest and enthusiasm
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3.24
Web Links
blockade
1 use
The Yankee blockade about the Confederate ports had tightened, and luxuries such as tea, coffee, silks, whalebone stays, colognes, fashion magazines and books were scarce and dear.
blockade = war measure that prevents transfer of goods
DefinitionGenerally blockade means:
action to keep people and goods from reaching a location
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.12
Web Links
complacent
4 uses
Scarlett seemed demure and sweet enough these days, but there was a pleased complacency in her eyes which annoyed people...
complacency = excess of self-satisfaction
DefinitionGenerally complacent means:
contented (unworried and satisfied) — often to a fault
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.10
Web Links
defer   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 2 uses
1  —1 use as in:
deferred the decision
It had taken all of Melanie's diplomacy to persuade them to defer their decision.
defer = postpone (put off until the future)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of defer means:
postpone (hold off until a later time)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4.45
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
deferred to her wishes
Here, excitement never entered in, voices were never raised, everyone deferred gently to the opinions of others...
deferred = submitted or yielded (in this case, to listening politely)
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 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2.8
Web Links
discord
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
discordant music
Then she hastily blundered into the opening bars of "Jacket of Gray" and stopped with a discord as she remembered how heartrending that selection was too.
discord = unpleasant sound
DefinitionGenerally this sense of discord means:
unpleasant sound — especially a combination of sounds that sound wrong together (though sometimes done intentionally in music)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3.17
Web Links
disdain
3 uses
She made a point of giving a disdainful look to every soldier she met,
disdainful = condescending (showing 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
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4.33
Web Links
guile
5 uses
Mammy's victories over Scarlett were hard-won and represented guile unknown to the white mind.
guile = cunning (shrewdness, cleverness)
DefinitionGenerally guile means:
cunning (shrewdness and cleverness) and deceitful
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.9
Web Links
heresy
4 uses
But at this moment, heresy though it was, she could not help thinking the Yankees were right on this one matter, even if wrong in all others.
heresy = an opinion most people consider immoral
DefinitionGenerally heresy means:
opinions or actions most people consider immoral
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.13
Web Links
impetuous
3 uses
But Atlanta was ... as headstrong and impetuous as herself.
impetuous = impulsive
DefinitionGenerally this sense of impetuous means:
impulsive (acting suddenly without much thought) — often with an unfortunate consequence
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4.47
Web Links
indolent
4 uses
Where he had once been lounging and indolent, he was now as alert as a prowling cat,
indolent = lazy
DefinitionGenerally this sense of indolent means:
lazy; disinclined to work
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4.34
Web Links
obscure   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 10 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
it obscured my view
Whisky was showing in his face and the hard line of his long jaw was being obscured under an unhealthy bloat and puffs rising under his bloodshot eyes.
obscured = made less visible
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.14
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
the view or directions are obscure
Unashamed of how he came by his fortune, he pretended that they, too, were unashamed of their beginnings and he seldom missed an opportunity to remark upon matters which, by common consent, everyone felt were better left in polite obscurity.
obscurity = hiding (the state of being hidden—not seen or discussed)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not clearly seen, understood, or expressed
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5.49
Web Links
3  —3 uses as in:
knows the famous and the obscure
The war had definitely established the importance of Atlanta in the affairs of the South and the hitherto obscure town was now known far and wide.
obscure = not known by many people; or undistinguished
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not known to many people; or unimportant or undistinguished
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.12
Web Links
obstinate
19 uses
You know how obstinate men are when they get their backs up.
obstinate = stubborn
DefinitionGenerally obstinate means:
stubbornly not doing what others want
Word Statistics
Book19 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.2
Web Links
ratify
5 uses
As Ashley had prophesied, there had been hell to pay since the legislature refused to ratify the amendment. [giving all races the right to vote]
ratify = approve or accept
DefinitionGenerally ratify means:
to approve — typically the formal approval of an agreement by an organization
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4.42
Web Links
scrupulous
11 uses
It was so obvious that we were meant for each other.  So obvious that I was the only man of your acquaintance who could love you after knowing you as you really are—hard and greedy and unscrupulous, like me.
unscrupulous = unethical

(editor's note:  The prefix "un-" in unscrupulous means not and reverses the meaning of scrupulous. This is the same pattern you see in words like unhappy, unknown, and unlucky.)
DefinitionGenerally scrupulous means:
careful to behave ethically and/or diligently (with great care and attention to detail)
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4.37
Web Links
servile
2 uses
Formerly he had the same combination of servility and impertinence which Wilkerson possessed...
servility = submissiveness, and/or eagerness to serve and please
DefinitionGenerally servile means:
submissive — typically excessively so (so submissive or eager to serve and please that one seems to have no self-respect)

or:

relating to the work that requires obeying demeaning commands

or:

slave-like or relating to slaves
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3.29
Web Links
wallow   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 4 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
wallow happily in the mud
It was an enormous bottomless trough in which the hogs could swill and wallow.
wallow = relax
DefinitionGenerally this sense of wallow means:
to relax — especially of an animal rolling about in mud or shallow water

or more rarely:  a noun describing the mud puddle or indentation in which an animal relaxes or rolls around
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.8
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
a wagon wallowed through the mud
There seemed to be just as many vehicles wallowing in the mud holes as there had been then, except that there were no Confederate ambulances,
wallowing = moving with difficulty
DefinitionGenerally this sense of wallow means:
to move with difficulty; or perhaps just to move through water or in a rolling/wave-like manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4.33
Web Links
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