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Gulliver's Travels

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
affectation
3 uses
no pride, vanity, or affectation
affectation = behaving in an artificial way to make an impression
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
consequence   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 26 uses
1  —17 uses as in:
a direct consequence of
The flying or floating island is exactly circular, its diameter 7837 yards, or about four miles and a half, and consequently contains ten thousand acres.
consequently = resultantly (as a result)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
a result of something (often an undesired side effect)
Word Statistics
Book17 uses
Library28 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
2  —9 uses as in:
of little consequence
The cottagers and labourers keep their children at home, their business being only to till and cultivate the earth, and therefore their education is of little consequence to the public:
consequence = importance
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
importance or relevance
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useIntr.
Web Links
contrived
38 uses
The queen commanded her own cabinet-maker to contrive a box, that might serve me for a bedchamber,
contrive = devise (or arrange or invent)

(editor's note:  The suffix "-ive" converts a word into an adjective; though over time, what was originally an adjective often comes to be used as a noun. The adjective pattern means tending to and is seen in words like attractive, impressive, and supportive. Examples of the noun include narrative, alternative, and detective.)
DefinitionGenerally contrived means:
unnatural seeming (due to careful planning)

or more rarely:

arranged (that something should happen)
Word Statistics
Book38 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
convey   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 14 uses
1  —1 use as in:
convey her thoughts
He is usually governed by a decayed wench, or favourite footman, who are the tunnels through which all graces are conveyed, and may properly be called, in the last resort, the governors of the kingdom.†
conveyed = communicated or expressed
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convey means:
communicate or express
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
2  —13 uses as in:
convey her safely to
I was conveyed to his own house; and at my earnest request he led me up to the highest room backwards.†
conveyed = transported
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convey means:
transport
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
digress
2 uses
To return from this digression.
digression = instance of getting off the main topic

(editor's note:  The suffix "-sion", converts a verb into a noun that denotes the action or result of the verb. Typically, there is a slight change in the ending of the root verb, as in admission from admit, discussion from discuss, and invasion from invade.)
DefinitionGenerally digress means:
wander from a direct or straight course — typically verbally
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
direct   (5 meanings)
5 meanings, 48 uses
1  —1 use as in:
depart directly
While she was absent, and out of hearing, a small white spaniel that belonged to one of the chief gardeners, having got by accident into the garden, happened to range near the place where I lay: the dog, following the scent, came directly up, and taking me in his mouth, ran straight to his master wagging his tail, and set me gently on the ground.†
directly = immediately
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
without delay, or in the quickest manner, or without going somewhere else first
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library16 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —22 uses as in:
directly above; or buy direct from
I would have pursued my journey, but he placed himself directly in the way, yet looking with a very mild aspect, never offering the least violence.†
directly = straight (exactly where stated; used for emphasis)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
straight (exactly where stated); or without involvement of anything in between
The exact meaning of this sense of direct is subject to its context. For example:
  • "The road runs directly to Las Vegas." — straight (without varying from a straight line)
  • "It was a direct hit." — exact
  • "The plant is in direct sunlight." — unobstructed (without anything in between)
  • "She wants a direct meeting with him." — personal (without other people in between)
  • "She paid direct attention to what he was reading." — close
  • "a direct gaze" — straight, steady, or focused—not a brief glance taken while generally looking at other things; not a sideways look
Word Statistics
Book22 uses
Library62 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
3  —7 uses as in:
directed her question to
But those objects against which their envy seems principally directed, are the vices of the younger sort and the deaths of the old.†
directed = focused
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
to indicate direction; or to cause movement or focus in a direction or towards an object
The exact meaning of this sense of direct is subject to its context. For example:
  • "intentionally directed fire at unarmed civilians" — aimed a gun
  • "directed the question to her" — aimed a question
  • "directed her north" — pointed in a particular direction
  • "directed attention to the 3rd paragraph" — focused attention on a particular object
  • "The sound of her voice directed him to the kitchen." — guided or gave directions to someone to help them move to a particular place
  • "She directed him to the airport." — gave directions to send someone to a particular place
  • "She directed the boat north." — steered it
  • "directed the letter to" — send a letter to a particular person by putting a name and address on it
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library36 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
4  —17 uses as in:
directed the jury to...
To this the king returned some answer, which, although I could not understand, yet I replied as I had been directed:†
directed = ordered
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
give instructions or commands
Word Statistics
Book17 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
5  —1 use as in:
directed the movie
...being left to debate the matter between themselves within the space of one skull, would soon come to a good understanding, and produce that moderation, as well as regularity of thinking, so much to be wished for in the heads of those, who imagine they come into the world only to watch and govern its motion: and as to the difference of brains, in quantity or quality, among those who are directors in faction, the doctor assured us, from his own knowledge, that "it was a perfect trifle."†
directors = supervisors (people in charge)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
supervise, control, or to be in charge of
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library29 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
discourse
36 uses
This was my sincere endeavour in those many discourses I had with that monarch,
discourses = conversations
DefinitionGenerally discourse means:
a serious speech, writing, or conversation on a particular topic

or much more rarely: to speak or write formally on a particular topic; or to have a conversation
Word Statistics
Book36 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
forbearance
22 uses
I could not forbear shaking my head, and smiling a little at his ignorance.
forbear = stop myself from (refrain from)
DefinitionGenerally forbearance means:
refraining (holding back) from acting

or:

patience, tolerance, or self-control
Word Statistics
Book22 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useIntr.
Web Links
malicious
22 uses
they are cunning, malicious, treacherous, and revengeful.
malicious = wanting to see others suffer
DefinitionGenerally malicious means:
wanting to see others suffer; or threatening evil
Word Statistics
Book22 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
metropolis
22 uses
The first request I made, after I had obtained my liberty, was, that I might have license to see Mildendo, the metropolis;
metropolis = large city
DefinitionGenerally metropolis means:
city — especially a large city that is considered important
Word Statistics
Book22 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
resolve   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 18 uses
1  —15 uses as in:
I resolved to stop drinking.
I was weary of being confined to an island where I received so little countenance, and resolved to leave it with the first opportunity.
resolved = decided
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
to decide — typically a firm or formal decision
Word Statistics
Book15 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
2  —3 uses as in:
Her resolve weakened.
I ate no other supper, being resolved to spare my provisions as much as I could.
resolved = determined (with firmness of purpose)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
firmness of purpose (strong determination to do something)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useIntr.
Web Links
servile
3 uses
But it is impossible to express his noble resentment at our savage treatment of the Houyhnhnm race; particularly after I had explained the manner and use of castrating horses among us, to hinder them from propagating their kind, and to render them more servile.
servile = submissive
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 2
Web Links
venerate
6 uses
I had not yet been a year in this country before I contracted such a love and veneration for the inhabitants, that I entered on a firm resolution never to return to humankind,
veneration = feelings of respect and reverence

(editor's note:  The suffix "-tion", converts a verb into a noun that denotes the action or result of the verb. Typically, there is a slight change in the ending of the root verb, as in action, education, and observation.)
DefinitionGenerally venerate means:
regard with feelings of respect and reverence
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
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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