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Flowers for Algernon
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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cerebral
1 use
Moderate exercise increases cerebral blood volume which improves thinking.
cerebral = relating to the brain
DefinitionGenerally cerebral means:
relating to the brain — especially the cerebrum (front of the brain)

or:

involving intelligence rather than emotions or instinct
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
concerto
1 use
with Bach's Brandenburg Concertos playing in the background
concertos = music written for orchestra and one (or more) solo instruments
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
convention
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
to convene
She is at the convention in Las Vegas.
convention = large conference or meeting
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convention means:
a large conference or meeting
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
cower
1 use
She cowered in fear.
cowered = showed fear by positioning the body as though afraid of being hit
DefinitionGenerally cower means:
show fear by positioning the body as though afraid of being hit
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
deteriorate
5 uses
The situation could quickly deteriorate.
deteriorate = become worse
DefinitionGenerally deteriorate means:
become worse

or:

gradually wear away or break into tiny particles
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
fissure
1 use
The earthquake opened a small fissure across the road.
fissure = a long narrow crack
DefinitionGenerally fissure means:
a long narrow crack; or its creation — especially in the ground or in rock

or:

a crack in the unity of a group; or its creation
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
function
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
Its main function is to...
The function of the lens of the eye is to focus light on the retina.
function = job
DefinitionGenerally this sense of function means:
purpose, job, or natural activity
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
hypothesis
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a study to test her hypothesis
The study will test the hypothesis that a good marriage is more important than a higher income when measuring happiness.
hypothesis = a seemingly reasonable, but unproven, idea or explanation
DefinitionGenerally this sense of hypothesis means:
seemingly reasonable, but unproven idea or explanation based upon known facts
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
illiterate
1 use
She is functionally illiterate, so she will need help filling out the employment application.
illiterate = unable to read or write
DefinitionGenerally illiterate means:
not literate (i.e., unable to read or write)

or:

uninformed in a particular field or general subject area
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
impair
2 uses
Alcohol impairs the ability to drive safely.
impairs = makes worse
DefinitionGenerally impair means:
make worse or less effective
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
introspection
1 use
She is not inclined towards introspection.
introspection = the contemplation of one's own thoughts and feelings
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
invariably
1 use
I tell myself to go to sleep early, but I invariably end up watching television late into the night.
invariably = consistently or without variation
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
obscure
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
it obscured my view
The stars are obscured by the clouds.
obscured = hidden or made less visible
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
opportunist
1 use
Her opponents describe her as a self-serving opportunist who will say anything and stab anyone in the back to get what she wants.
opportunist = one who takes advantage of unplanned circumstances — possibly unethically
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
plateau
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
reached a plateau in our growth
Sales increased for three straight years, but they seem to have hit a plateau.
plateau = a time of little change after more rapid change
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
progressive
1 use
progressive schools
progressive = favoring new ideas
DefinitionGenerally progressive means:
favoring political change or new ideas (typically associated with liberal causes); or a person with such beliefs

or:

gradually getting more severe — as of a disease or other condition

or:

gradually advancing (making progress)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
refute
1 use
The speaker refuted his opponent's arguments.
refuted = proved or argued that something is false
DefinitionGenerally refute means:
to prove or argue that something is false
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
subconscious
3 uses
She thinks dreams provide a window into the subconscious.
subconscious = mental activity of which we are not aware, but which can influence feelings and behavior
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
tangible
1 use
They set tangible goals.
tangible = capable of being touched, or easily understood so there is no question of its value or reality
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
vacuous
1 use
Her credentials do not add weight to such vacuous comments.
vacuous = lacking intelligent thought
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
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