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Metamorphosis

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
anxiety
1 use
there was nothing for him to do but wait; and, oppressed with anxiety and self-reproach, he began to crawl about,
anxiety = worry

(editor's notes:  In this context, oppressed is a synonym for burdened or troubled, and reproach is a synonym for criticism.)
DefinitionGenerally anxiety means:
nervousness or worry
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library23 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st usePart 2
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attribute
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
I attribute it to...
She thought he was laying there so still on purpose, playing the martyr; she attributed all possible understanding to him.
attributed = credited (pointed to as the cause of)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of attribute means:
to credit (a source for something)
in two typical senses:
  • "I attribute it to her work." — to say who or what made something happen
  • "Remember to attribute any quotations in your paper." — indicate the source of a quotation or idea
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st usePart 3
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austere
1 use
Meanwhile the day had become much lighter; part of the endless, grey-black building on the other side of the street - which was a hospital - could be seen quite clearly with the austere and regular line of windows piercing its facade;
austere = notable for absence of luxury, comfort, or decoration
DefinitionGenerally austere means:
a notable absence of luxury, comfort, or decoration

or:

of a person:  stern in manner; or practicing great self-denial
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st usePart 1
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comprehend
2 uses
But now that I see your incomprehensible stubbornness I no longer feel any wish whatsoever to intercede on your behalf.
incomprehensible = not understandable

(Editor's note:  The prefix "in-" in incomprehensible means not and reverses the meaning of comprehensible. This is the same pattern you see in words like invisible, incomplete, and insecure.)
DefinitionGenerally comprehend means:
to understand something — especially to understand it completely
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library20 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st usePart 1
Web Links
contrast
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
contrast their writing styles
"That was the voice of an animal", said the chief clerk, with a calmness that was in contrast with his mother's screams.
in contrast = a comparison that shows differences
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contrast means:
point to differences between; or compare to show differences
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st usePart 1
Web Links
despair
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
she felt despair
Their business misfortune had reduced the family to a state of total despair,
despair = hopelessness
DefinitionGenerally this sense of despair means:
hopelessness; or distress (such as extreme worry or sadness from feeling powerless to change a bad situation)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st usePart 2
Web Links
dissuade
2 uses
So she refused to let her mother dissuade her.
dissuade = stop
DefinitionGenerally dissuade means:
persuade someone not to do something
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 2
Web Links
dominate
1 use
Grete would probably be the only one who would dare enter a room dominated by Gregor crawling about the bare walls by himself.
dominated = overpowered (in the impression given)
DefinitionGenerally dominate means:
to control; or to be most influential, powerful, abundant, important, or conspicuous
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library17 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st usePart 2
Web Links
earnest
1 use
These earnest gentlemen - all three of them had full beards, as Gregor learned peering through the crack in the door one day - were painfully insistent on things' being tidy.
earnest = excessively serious
DefinitionGenerally earnest means:
characterized by sincere belief

or:

intensely or excessively serious
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library19 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st usePart 3
Web Links
impede
2 uses
instead of running after the chief clerk himself, or at least not impeding Gregor as he ran after him, Gregor's father...
impeding = interfering with
DefinitionGenerally impede means:
create difficulty so as to slow or prevent (something)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 1
Web Links
indifferent
2 uses
indifferent as to whether it had been eaten or - more often than not - had been left totally untouched.
indifferent = unconcerned (without interest)
DefinitionGenerally indifferent means:
without interest
in various senses, including:
  • unconcerned — as in "She is indifferent to what is served to eat."
  • unsympathetic — as in "She is indifferent to his needs."
  • not of good quality (which may imply average or poor quality depending upon context) — as in "an indifferent performance"
  • impartial — as in "We need a judge who is indifferent."
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st usePart 3
Web Links
lethargic
1 use
Long after he had finished eating and lay lethargic in the same place, his sister...
lethargic = without energy
DefinitionGenerally lethargic means:
lacking energy
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 2
Web Links
moreover
2 uses
He would have used his arms and his hands to push himself up; but instead of them he only had all those little legs continuously moving in different directions, and which he was moreover unable to control.
moreover = in addition to what has just been said
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st usePart 1
Web Links
nonetheless
4 uses
He did not turn it all the way round as he felt his neck becoming stiff, but it was nonetheless enough to see that nothing behind him had changed, only his sister had stood up.
nonetheless = in spite of that (used to connect contrasting ideas)
DefinitionGenerally nonetheless means:
in spite of that (Used to connect contrasting ideas. Other synonyms could include words and phrases such as nevertheless, all the same, still,  and however.)
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st usePart 2
Web Links
obstinate
1 use
But since he had been in work he had become more obstinate and would always insist on staying longer at the table, even though he regularly fell asleep and it was then harder than ever to persuade him to exchange the chair for his bed.
obstinate = stubbornly unyielding to other's wishes
DefinitionGenerally obstinate means:
stubbornly not doing what others want
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 3
Web Links
protrude
3 uses
she probably even had to overcome the urge to flee when she saw the little bit of him that protruded from under the couch.
protruded = stuck out
DefinitionGenerally protrude means:
to stick out from
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 2
Web Links
reproach
3 uses
Then, however much mother and sister would importune him with little reproaches and warnings he would keep slowly shaking his head for a quarter of an hour with his eyes closed and refusing to get up.
reproaches = criticisms

(editor's note:  In this context, Importune means "to urge someone to do something.")
DefinitionGenerally reproach means:
a criticism; or to express criticism — especially where a relationship makes the disapproval result in disappointment or shame
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st usePart 3
Web Links
ruminate
1 use
He remained in this state of empty and peaceful rumination until he heard the clock tower strike three in the morning.
rumination = thinking again and again about something

(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 ruminate means:
to think again and again about something; or to think about something in a sustained (continuing) manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st usePart 3
Web Links
subtle
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a subtle difference or thinker
His father, though, was not in the mood to notice subtleties like that;
subtleties = things that are hard to notice
DefinitionGenerally this sense of subtle means:
not obvious, but understandable by someone with adequate sensitivity and relevant knowledge (perhaps depending upon fine distinctions)

or:

capable of understanding things that require sensitivity and relevant knowledge (perhaps understanding fine distinctions)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st usePart 2
Web Links
sufficient
2 uses
...wishing to establish whether it was sufficiently cooked or whether it should be sent back to the kitchen.
sufficiently = adequately (in a manner that provides enough — often without being more than is needed)
DefinitionGenerally sufficient means:
adequate (enough — often without being more than is needed)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library22 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st usePart 3
Web Links
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