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Moby Dick
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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augment
5 uses
No small number of these whaling seamen belong to the Azores, where the outward bound Nantucket whalers frequently touch to augment their crews from the hardy peasants of those rocky shores.
augment = add to (increase the number of)
DefinitionGenerally augment means:
enlarge or increase
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 85-87
Web Links
capricious
5 uses
Nothing was said for some moments, while a succession of riotous waves rolled by, which by one of those occasional caprices of the seas were tumbling, not heaving it.
caprices = unpredictable events
DefinitionGenerally capricious means:
impulsive or unpredictable or tending to make sudden changes — especially impulsive behavior
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 52-54
Web Links
countenance
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a pleasant countenance
I have never seen him except in the remoter southern seas, and then always at too great a distance to study his countenance.
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 31-33
Web Links
credulous
5 uses
his credulous disciples believed that he had specifically fore-announced it, instead of only making a general prophecy
credulous = too willing to believe
DefinitionGenerally credulous means:
gullible (being too willing to believe)
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
diligent
10 uses
Hands go diligently along the bulwarks, and with buckets of water and rags restore them to their full tidiness.
diligently = with hard work and care
DefinitionGenerally diligent means:
hard work and care in tasks — often continuing when others might quit because of difficulties
Word Statistics
Book10 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1-3
Web Links
fallacious
1 use
And equally fallacious seems the conceit, that because the so-called whale-bone whales no longer haunt many grounds in former years abounding with them, hence that species also is declining.
fallacious = mistaken (based on incorrect information or belief)
DefinitionGenerally fallacious means:
not correct
  • typically describing something as mistaken due to incorrect information or belief
  • sometimes describing something as an intentional lie
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library0 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 103-105
Web Links
forbearance
7 uses
Starbuck grasped Ahab by the arm—"God, God is against thee, old man; forbear!"
forbear = refrain (in this case, he is saying "refrain from hunting Moby Dick.")
DefinitionGenerally forbearance means:
refraining (holding back) from acting

or:

patience, tolerance, or self-control
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 52-54
Web Links
hypothesis
5 uses
1  —5 uses as in:
a study to test her hypothesis
But supplementary to this, it has hypothetically occurred to me, that...
hypothetically = based on an idea that seems reasonable, but is unproven
DefinitionGenerally this sense of hypothesis means:
seemingly reasonable, but unproven idea or explanation based upon known facts
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 76-78
Web Links
impetuous
4 uses
For however eagerly and impetuously the savage crew had hailed the announcement of his quest; yet all sailors of all sorts are more or less capricious and unreliable—they live in the varying outer weather, and they inhale its fickleness—and...
impetuously = impulsively (acting suddenly without much thought)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of impetuous means:
impulsive (acting suddenly without much thought) — often with an unfortunate consequence
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
indolent
9 uses
Indolence and idleness perished before him.
indolence = laziness
DefinitionGenerally this sense of indolent means:
lazy; disinclined to work
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
inflexible
4 uses
Such, gentlemen, is the inflexibility of sea-usages and the instinctive love of neatness in seamen; some of whom would not willingly drown without first washing their faces.
inflexibility = not flexible (not bendable or adaptable in various senses:)
  • not willing to compromise or make concessions — as when a boss says "Do it my way or you're fired."
  • not able to adjust well to different conditions — as of a schedule that cannot be changed
  • not easily bent without physical damage or injury — as of brittle steel or person with stiff joints
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 52-54
Web Links
obscure   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 9 uses
1  —5 uses as in:
it obscured my view
...yet the peculiar horror with which he seemed to inspire the rest of the herd, was owing to a cause which at first the intervening distance obscured from us.
obscured = hid (made less visible)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 67-69
Web Links
2  —4 uses as in:
the view or directions are obscure
...that the full terror of the voyage must be kept withdrawn into the obscure background (for few men's courage is proof against protracted meditation unrelieved by action); that when they stood their long night watches, his officers and men must have some nearer things to think of than Moby Dick.
obscure = not clearly seen (in this case, because it is not thought about)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not clearly seen, understood, or expressed
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 52-54
Web Links
obstinate
4 uses
The anatomical fact of this labyrinth is indisputable; and that the supposition founded upon it is reasonable and true, seems the more cogent to me, when I consider the otherwise inexplicable obstinacy of that leviathan in HAVING HIS SPOUTINGS OUT, as the fishermen phrase it.
obstinacy = trait of always (in a manner that is stubbornly unyielding despite resistance)
DefinitionGenerally obstinate means:
stubbornly not doing what others want
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
ostentatious
6 uses
they would ostentatiously sharpen their knives
ostentatiously = in a manner intended to attract notice and impress others
DefinitionGenerally ostentatious means:
intended to attract notice and impress others — especially with wealth in a vulgar way
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
passage
4 uses
I have particularly questioned him concerning this passage in Langsdorff. He substantiates every word.†
passage = a short part of a longer written work
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 61-63
Web Links
perfidy
2 uses
In a few minutes the scuttle was opened, and, bound hand and foot, the still struggling ringleader was shoved up into the air by his perfidious allies, who at once claimed the honour of securing a man who had been fully ripe for murder.
perfidious = not trustworthy (prone to intentional betrayal)
DefinitionGenerally perfidy means:
an act of deliberate betrayal; or such behavior
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
prodigious
19 uses
I was ushered into a small room ... with a prodigious bed, almost big enough indeed for any four harpooneers to sleep abreast.
prodigious = far beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree
DefinitionGenerally prodigious means:
enormous; or far beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree
Word Statistics
Book19 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 16-18
Web Links
remonstrate
5 uses
But as all my remonstrances produced no effect upon Queequeg,
remonstrances = arguments in protest or opposition
DefinitionGenerally remonstrate means:
argue in protest or opposition
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 16-18
Web Links
reprehensible
1 use
But all these foolish arguments of old Sag-Harbor only evinced his foolish pride of reason—a thing still more reprehensible in him, seeing that he had but little learning except what he had picked up from the sun and the sea.
reprehensible = bad — deserving criticism
DefinitionGenerally reprehensible means:
bad and unacceptable — deserving severe criticism
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 82-84
Web Links
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