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And Then There Were None

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

instructions
acquit
4 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
she was acquitted
It took the jury only 30 minutes to acquit her of the murder charge.
acquit = officially find "not guilty"
DefinitionGenerally this sense of acquit means:
to officially find "not guilty" of criminal charges; or (informally) to find someone innocent of a charge of having done wrong
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4, p.59.6
Web Links
consequence   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
a direct consequence of
Your decision will have three major consequences.
consequences = results
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
a result of something (often an undesired side effect)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library28 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 7, p.103.8
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
of little consequence
Think carefully. This is a consequential decision.
consequential = important
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
importance or relevance
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 2, p.34.9
Web Links
contradict
3 uses
Does the sentence contradict the main claim of the essay?
contradict = disagree with
DefinitionGenerally contradict means:
disagree
in various senses, including:
  • to say something is not true — as in "She contradicted his testimony."
  • to say something else is true when both can't be true — as in "I don't believe her. She contradicted herself as she told us what happened."
  • to be in conflict with — as in "Her assertions contradict accepted scientific principles."
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useEpil., p.261.2
Web Links
contrast
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
it is a contrast
College is quite a contrast to high school.
contrast = something notably different compared to
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contrast means:
something noticeably different (compared to something else or to other things)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 6, p.95
Web Links
determine   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 4 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
is determined to succeed
I'm determined to become a lawyer.
determined = firmly planning
DefinitionGenerally this sense of determined means:
firm in purpose
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 13, p.193.3
2  —1 use as in:
I determined what to do
I determined to prolong my holiday.
determined = decided

(editor's note:  This sense of determined is seen more in classic literature. In most of those uses today, it would be replaced by decided.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of determine means:
decide
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library20 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useEpil., p.264.6
direct   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —1 use as in:
directed her question to
The sprinkler head needs to be fixed so it directs water away from the house.
directs = aims
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
Book1 use
Library36 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useEpil., p.269.7
Web Links
2  —1 use 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
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useEpil., p.262.7
Web Links
unquizzed meaning  —1 use
engage
5 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
engage her services
The school district engaged the services of her architectural firm.
engaged = hired
DefinitionGenerally this sense of engage means:
hire, reserve, book, or occupy
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3, p.53.5
Web Links
unquizzed meaning  —1 use
establish   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 5 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
Which word choice best maintains the tone established in the first paragraph?
established = created
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3, p.51.2
Web Links
2  —3 uses as in:
establish that there is a need
The passage is primarily about establishing the relationship between the level of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere and global temperature.
establishing = showing or demonstrating
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
show or determine (cause to be recognized or figure out)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 9, p.142.9
Web Links
grave
11 uses
Her smile disappeared as she suddenly realized the gravity of her situation.
gravity = seriousness or importance (weightiness)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of grave means:
serious and/or solemn
The exact meaning of this sense of grave can depend upon its context. For example:
  • "This is a grave problem," or "a situation of the utmost gravity." — important, dangerous, or causing worry
  • "She was in a grave mood upon returning from the funeral." — sad or solemn
  • "She looked me in the eye and gravely promised." — in a sincere and serious manner
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1, p.6.9
Web Links
indignant
4 uses
She was indignant, but agreed to be searched when they accused her of shoplifting.
indignant = angered or annoyed at something unjust or wrong
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library16 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 5, p.77.9
Web Links
nevertheless
9 uses
The class was hard. Nevertheless, it was my favorite.
nevertheless = in spite of that (used to connect contrasting ideas)
DefinitionGenerally nevertheless means:
in spite of that (Used to connect contrasting ideas. Other synonyms could include words and phrases such as nonetheless, all the same, still,  and however.)
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 4, p.59.1
Web Links
preserve
6 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
preserve the records
They are preserving the elephant habitat.
preserving = protecting or keeping something from changing
DefinitionGenerally this sense of preserve means:
to protect something or to keep it as it is
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 4, p.61.4
Web Links
reflect
5 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
I want to reflect on it.
At the beginning of this passage, the author reflects on her life as a waitress.
reflects = thinks carefully
DefinitionGenerally this sense of reflect means:
think carefully — possibly aloud or in writing
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 14, p.218
Web Links
unquizzed meaning  —1 use
sheer   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 6 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
sheer fun
She got the job through sheer persistence.
sheer = pure (completely by)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of sheer means:
complete or pure — without restriction,  qualification, or other elements (used for emphasis)
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 7, p.100.6
Web Links
2  —2 uses as in:
a sheer cliff
Be careful on that road. There is a sheer drop-off on the right.
sheer = so steep it is almost vertical
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 8, p.111.5
Web Links
tone
11 uses
Which of the following words best maintains the tone established in this passage.
tone = general feeling
DefinitionGenerally this sense of tone means:
the general feeling, mood, or attitude of something — especially of something said or written
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1, p.6.2
Web Links
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