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The War of the Worlds
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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apathy
1 use
Certainly this news excited people intensely, whatever their previous apathy.
apathy = lack of interest and enthusiasm
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.14
Web Links
belligerent
1 use
My imagination became belligerent, and defeated the invaders in a dozen striking ways; something of my schoolboy dreams of battle and heroism came back.
belligerent = warlike
DefinitionGenerally belligerent means:
hostile (the attitude of one eager to fight); or one already engaged in a fight or war
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.9
Web Links
complacent
1 use
With infinite complacency men went to and fro over this globe about their little affairs, serene in their assurance of their empire over matter.
complacency = without concern — often to a fault
DefinitionGenerally complacent means:
contented (unworried and satisfied) — often to a fault
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
consequence
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
of little consequence
He was a stout, ruddy, middle-aged man, well dressed; three days before, he must have been walking the world, a man of considerable consequence.†
consequence = importance or significance
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
importance or relevance
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.3
Web Links
decorum
1 use
Their conceptions of ornament and decorum were necessarily different from ours; and not only were they evidently much less sensible of changes of temperature than we are, but changes of pressure do not seem to have affected their health at all seriously.
decorum = manners and conduct considered to be proper and in good taste
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.2
Web Links
denounce
1 use
At the end of it I sat ... denouncing the shortsighted timidity of the Martians.
denouncing = criticizing
DefinitionGenerally denounce means:
to strongly criticize or accuse publicly

or more rarely:  to inform against someone (turn someone into the authorities)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.7
Web Links
despondent
1 use
I sat about in the darkness of the scullery, in a state of despondent wretchedness.
despondent = emotionally depressed
DefinitionGenerally despondent means:
emotionally depressed — especially a feeling of grief and hopelessness after a loss
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.5
Web Links
deter
2 uses
There were three policemen too, one of whom was mounted, doing their best, under instructions from Stent, to keep the people back and deter them from approaching the cylinder.
deter = discourage an action
DefinitionGenerally deter means:
try to prevent; or prevent
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.6
Web Links
discriminate
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
discriminating taste
excavating and embanking in a methodical and discriminating manner.
discriminating = careful about how and where the embanking is done (aware of differences)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of discriminate means:
to recognize or perceive differences — especially fine distinctions
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.2
Web Links
expedient
1 use
And in this connection it is curious to remark that even on this earth Nature has never hit upon the wheel, or has preferred other expedients to its development.
expedients = actions that are speedy or practical
DefinitionGenerally expedient means:
a practical action — especially one that accepts negative tradeoffs due to circumstances

or:

convenient, speedy, or practical
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.2
Web Links
furtive
2 uses
He had hid under the dead horse for a long time, peeping out furtively across the common.
furtively = while taking pains to avoid being observed
DefinitionGenerally furtive means:
taking pains to avoid being observed

or:

in a manner indicating nervousness (being cautious or appearing suspicious)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.11
Web Links
gesticulate
3 uses
It is commonly supposed that they communicated by sounds and tentacular gesticulations;
gesticulations = movements
DefinitionGenerally gesticulate means:
to make gestures (hand or body movements) while speaking or to express something
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.2
Web Links
highlight
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
highlights and shadows
So much I saw then, all vaguely for the flickering of the lightning, in blinding highlights and dense black shadows.†
highlights = things made bright
DefinitionGenerally this sense of highlight means:
noun:  something that is lighter and draws attention — such as an area of a painting

verb:  making something lighter — such as an area of a painting
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library0 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.10
illustrate
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
an illustrated children's book
I recall particularly the illustration of one of the first pamphlets to give a consecutive account of the war. The artist had...†
illustration = drawing
DefinitionGenerally this sense of illustrate means:
to draw pictures (or provide photographs) to accompany a book or other writing
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.2
Web Links
incessant
3 uses
life is an incessant struggle for existence
incessant = continuous
DefinitionGenerally incessant means:
continuous — often in an annoying way
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.17
Web Links
lethargic
2 uses
rousing myself from the lethargy that had fallen upon me, I looked down and saw...
lethargy = lack of energy
DefinitionGenerally lethargic means:
lacking energy
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.1
Web Links
mean
1 use
The planet Mars, I scarcely need remind the reader, revolves about the sun at a mean distance of 140,000,000 miles, and the light and heat it receives from the sun is barely half of that received by this world.
mean = average
DefinitionGenerally this sense of mean means:
the average number
For example, the mean of 1 & 3 is 2.
More generally, the mean of n numbers is computed by dividing the sum of the numbers by n; for example, the mean of 1, 2, and 6
= (1+2+6) / 3
= 9 / 3
= 3
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library0 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
minuteness
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
minute size; or minute description
Before the cylinder fell there was a general persuasion that through all the deep of space no life existed beyond the petty surface of our minute sphere.†
minute = small
DefinitionGenerally this sense of minuteness means:
very small

or:

detailed (including even small considerations); or careful (done with care)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
obscure
5 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
was obscure, but now bright
In the obscurity I could see he made a gesture of despair.
obscurity = darkness
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
dark or dingy; or inconspicuous (not very noticeable)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.11
Web Links
?  —3 uses
exact meaning not specified
or not quizzed
precipitate
2 uses
1  —2 uses
adj as in: a precipitate decision
But now that I was beginning to understand something of his quality, I could divine the stress he laid on doing nothing precipitately.
precipitately = with great haste

(editor's note:  In this context, divine is a synonym for understand.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of precipitate means:
acting with great haste — often without adequate thought
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.7
Web Links
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