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Far from the Madding Crowd

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

instructions
appropriate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
appropriate from their culture
The invading army appropriated the home to use as a local headquarters.
appropriated = took without asking
DefinitionGenerally this sense of appropriate means:
to take without asking — often without right
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
candid
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
your candid opinion
Don't worry about my feelings. I'd like your candid opinion.
candid = honest and direct
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
contempt
4 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
feels contempt towards her
Familiarity breeds contempt.
contempt = lack of respect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contempt means:
lack of respect for someone or something thought inferior — often accompanied by a feeling of dislike or disgust
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
countenance
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a pleasant countenance
She has a pleasant countenance.
countenance = facial expression; or face
DefinitionGenerally this sense of countenance means:
facial expression; or face; or composure or manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
direct   (4 meanings)
4 meanings, 16 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
depart directly
I walked directly to work.
directly = without interruption in the straightest or quickest possible manner
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
without delay, or in the quickest manner, or without going somewhere else first
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library16 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
2  —6 uses as in:
directly above; or buy direct from
This flower does best in direct sunlight.
direct = without intervention from anything (in this case, not sun that is partially blocked or reflected)
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
Book6 uses
Library62 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
3  —1 use as in:
was direct in my instructions
I left them with direct instructions.
direct = straightforward
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
straightforward (uncomplicated or simple — perhaps also indicating openness and honesty)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
4  —3 uses as in:
directed the jury to...
On the SAT test, some questions direct you to look at an underlined or numbered portion of a passage.
direct = instruct
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
give instructions or commands
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 19-21
Web Links
discern
14 uses
The second picture has more pixels, but the human eye can't discern the difference.
discern = notice or see (something that is not obvious)
DefinitionGenerally discern means:
to notice or understand something — often something that is not obvious
Word Statistics
Book14 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePref.
Web Links
discord
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
discord amongst the group
There is too much discord in the team.
discord = conflict
DefinitionGenerally this sense of discord means:
conflict or disagreement — especially among those expected to cooperate

or (especially in the form discordant):

seeming different  or wrong along with everything else
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 34-36
Web Links
disdain
3 uses
She tries to be polite, but cannot hide her disdain for authority.
disdain = 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
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
dubious
4 uses
She was dubious, but agreed to come with us anyway.
dubious = doubtful; or suspicious; or full of uncertainty
DefinitionGenerally dubious means:
doubtful
in various senses, including:
  • doubtful that something should be relied upon — as in "The argument relies on a dubious assumption."
  • doubtful that something is morally proper — as in "The company is accused of using dubious sales practices to influence minors."
  • bad or of questionable value — as in "The state has the dubious distinction of the highest taxes."
  • doubtful or uncertain — as in "She is dubious about making the change."
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
impetuous
2 uses
She regretted her impetuous promise.
impetuous = impulsive (made suddenly without much thought)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of impetuous means:
impulsive (acting suddenly without much thought) — often with an unfortunate consequence
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 19-21
Web Links
nominal
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
he's nominally in charge
It was nominally written by the artist, but everyone suspects a ghostwriter did the bulk of the work.
nominally = in name only
DefinitionGenerally this sense of nominal means:
in form or name, but not in reality
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 49-51
Web Links
novel
3 uses
We're looking for novel marketing ideas.
novel = new and original
DefinitionGenerally this sense of novel means:
new and original — typically something considered good
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 28-30
Web Links
resolve   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 15 uses
1  —14 uses as in:
I resolved to stop drinking.
This year I resolved to lose a pound a week for 5 weeks.
resolved = decided
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
to decide — typically a firm or formal decision
Word Statistics
Book14 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
Her resolve weakened.
She never waivered in her resolve to attend a good college.
resolve = determination (firmness of purpose)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolve means:
firmness of purpose (strong determination to do something)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 22-24
Web Links
superfluous
7 uses
Eliminate superfluous words.
superfluous = more than is needed, desired, or required
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4-6
Web Links
trifle   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 20 uses
1  —16 uses as in:
a trifling matter
We all agree with the goal, but how to achieve it is not a trifling matter.
trifling = small (of little importance)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of trifle means:
something of small importance; or a small quantity
Word Statistics
Book16 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10-12
Web Links
2  —4 uses as in:
trifle with her affections
She is not a woman to trifle with or ignore.
trifle with = treat thoughtlessly or without respect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of trifle with means:
to treat somebody or something thoughtlessly or without respect
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 28-30
Web Links
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