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Great Expectations
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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approach   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 7 uses
1  —5 uses as in:
approached the city
With these fears upon me, I began either to imagine or recall that I had had mysterious warnings of this man's approach.†
approach = coming near
DefinitionGenerally this sense of approach means:
to get closer to
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library88 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
approached her with the proposal
Having thought of the matter with care, I approached my subject as if I had never hinted at it before.†
approached = began talking about
DefinitionGenerally this sense of approach means:
to begin communication with someone about something — often a proposal or a delicate topic
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 37
Web Links
correspond   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 4 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
corresponding time period
He was a burly man of an exceedingly dark complexion, with an exceedingly large head, and a corresponding large hand.†
corresponding = fitting or proportional
DefinitionGenerally this sense of correspond means:
connect or fit together by being equivalent, proportionate, or matched

(Two things are equivalent if they have the same or very similar value, purpose, or result.)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
corresponding by email
You air in correspondence with Mr. Pip?†
correspondence = communication by writing letters
DefinitionGenerally this sense of correspond means:
communicate by writing letters or email
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 27
Web Links
countenance
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a pleasant countenance
...a countenance expressive of grief and despair...
countenance = facial expression
DefinitionGenerally this sense of countenance means:
facial expression; or face; or composure
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 23
Web Links
desist
1 use
Faint and sick with the pain of my injured arm, bewildered by the surprise, and yet conscious how easily this threat could be put in execution, I desisted, and tried to ease my arm were it ever so little.
desisted = stopped
DefinitionGenerally desist means:
to not do something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 53
Web Links
dismal
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a dismal expression
At this dismal time we were evidently all possessed by the idea that we were followed.
dismal = depressing or gloomy
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 54
Web Links
grindstone
1 use
After grinding a number of dull blades,—of whom it was remarkable that their fathers, when influential, were always going to help him to preferment, but always forgot to do it when the blades had left the Grindstone,—he had wearied of that poor work and had come to London.
grindstone = a revolving stone shaped like a disk that is used to grind, sharpen or polish
DefinitionGenerally grindstone means:
a revolving stone shaped like a disk that is used to grind, sharpen or polish

or:

work — as in the expressions "back to the grindstone" (back to work) or "keep your nose to the grindstone" (keep working hard)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 23
Web Links
hypothesis   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
a study to test her hypothesis
You say they are marks of finger-nails, and you set up the hypothesis that she destroyed her child.†
hypothesis = a seemingly reasonable, but unproven, idea
DefinitionGenerally this sense of hypothesis means:
seemingly reasonable, but unproven idea or explanation based upon known facts
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 48
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
assume as a working hypothesis
A little later on in the dinner, Mr. Wopsle reviewed the sermon with some severity, and intimated—in the usual hypothetical case of the Church being "thrown open"—what kind of sermon he would have given them.
hypothetical = something temporarily treated as true to advance a discussion or to further investigation
DefinitionGenerally this sense of hypothesis means:
something that may or may not be true, but is temporarily treated as true to advance a discussion or to further investigation
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
illustrate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
as illustrated by this example
...exalted into the beneficent contriver of the whole occasion, actually took the top of the table; and, when he addressed them on the subject of my being bound, and had fiendishly congratulated them on my being liable to imprisonment if I played at cards, drank strong liquors, kept late hours or bad company, or indulged in other vagaries which the form of my indentures appeared to contemplate as next to inevitable, he placed me standing on a chair beside him to illustrate his remarks.†
illustrate = help make clear
DefinitionGenerally this sense of illustrate means:
to help make clear — typically by example
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 10
1st useChapter 13
Web Links
oblige
27 uses
1  —8 uses as in:
I'm much obliged for your kindness
I only wanted you to know that I am doing very well in my apprenticeship, and am always much obliged to you.
obliged = grateful or indebted
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10
Web Links
?  —19 uses
exact meaning not specified
or not quizzed
prodigal
1 use
swine were the companions of the prodigal.
prodigal = the person who receives extreme forgiveness, in the commonly referenced Christian parable, The Prodigal Son

Editor's notes:
  • A parable is a story told to teach a moral lesson.
  • At one point in the story, the main character ate and slept with pigs (swine).
  • This is a common usage of prodigal; though it more generally refers to anyone (not just the Prodigal Son) who is recklessly wasteful; or perhaps long absent.
DefinitionGenerally prodigal means:
recklessly wasteful

or more rarely:

abundant (extravagant in amount)

or more rarely still:

long absent (someone who has been away a long time)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
querulous
1 use
Mr. Jaggers was querulous and angry with me for having "let it slip through my fingers," and said we must memorialize by and by, and try at all events for some of it.
querulous = complaining
DefinitionGenerally querulous means:
habitually complaining — especially in a high-pitched whiny voice
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 55
Web Links
render   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 3 uses
1  —1 use as in:
rendered service or a verdict
I begged Wemmick, in conclusion, to understand that my help must always be rendered without Herbert's knowledge or suspicion,
rendered = to give or supply something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 37
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
rendered her unconscious
The injury to his chest (which rendered his breathing extremely painful)...
rendered = made
DefinitionGenerally this sense of render means:
to make or cause to become
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 54
Web Links
3  —1 use as in:
rendered with, or rendered from
When I was old enough, I was to be apprenticed to Joe, and until I could assume that dignity I was not to be what Mrs. Joe called "Pompeyed," or (as I render it) pampered.
render = translate
DefinitionGenerally this sense of render means:
to portray or create something in a particular way; or to interpret, translate, or extract from

(see word notes for more detailed definitions based on context)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
repudiate
2 uses
...and should in my heart of hearts have repudiated the idea.
repudiated = strongly rejected
DefinitionGenerally repudiate means:
strong rejection — especially when the idea or thing being rejected was once embraced
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 19
Web Links
servile
3 uses
Standing at this table, I became conscious of the servile Pumblechook in a black cloak and several yards of hatband, who was alternately stuffing himself, and making obsequious movements to catch my attention.
servile = submissive, and eager 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
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 19
Web Links
vacillate
1 use
asked the landlord, vacillating weakly.
vacillating = changing his mind (or doubting his earlier opinion)
DefinitionGenerally vacillate means:
to change one's mind back and forth between conflicting ideas

or:

to sway back and forth
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 54
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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