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Harry Potter (#1) and the Sorcerer's Stone
Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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alternative
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
an alternative plan
There was no alternative. [when Harry sacrificed Ron to win the chess game]
alternative = other possibility
DefinitionGenerally this sense of alternative means:
something available as another possibility
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 16, p.283.66
Web Links
askew
2 uses
[T]he twins forced the sweater over his head, knocking his glasses askew.
askew = not straight; or not right
DefinitionGenerally askew means:
not straight (not in proper alignment)

or:

(when used metaphorically) not right, or not as planned
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10, p.172.77
Web Links
bound   (5 meanings)
5 meanings, 13 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
She's bound to succeed.
They were bound to notice something.
bound = almost certain to
DefinitionGenerally this sense of bound means:
almost certain to; or determined to
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1, p.10.39
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
bound together
They bought Harry's school books in a shop called Flourish and Blotts where the shelves were stacked to the ceiling with books as large as paving stones bound in leather; books the size of postage stamps in covers of silk; books full of peculiar symbols and a few books with nothing in them at all.
bound = held together or wrapped (referring to holding the pages together and covering the book)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of bound means:
held together (connected or united) or wrapped

(see word notes for a more detailed definition based upon context)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library13 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5, p.80.36
Web Links
3  —5 uses as in:
I can't/must. I'm bound by...
Harry struggled against the ropes binding him, but they didn't give.
binding = tying up
DefinitionGenerally this sense of bound means:
tied up, prevented, or required
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 17, p.290.53
Web Links
4  —3 uses as in:
out of bounds; bounded on the east
Filch found them trying to force their way through a door that unluckily turned out to be the entrance to the out-of-bounds corridor on the third floor.
out-of-bounds = beyond the permitted boundary or limit
DefinitionGenerally this sense of bound means:
a boundary or limit
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 7, p.127.42
Web Links
5  —2 uses as in:
The deer bound across the trail.
"Make yerselves at home," said Hagrid, letting go of Fang, who bounded straight at Ron and started licking his ears.
bounded = jumped or leaped
DefinitionGenerally this sense of bound means:
to leap or jump
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library12 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 8, p.140.60
Web Links
burnish
1 use
burnished bronze doors
burnished = polished and shiny
DefinitionGenerally burnish means:
polish and make shiny — especially metal

or more generally:  to improve something — especially the impression that something makes
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5, p.72.56
Web Links
centaur
12 uses
"D'you think that was a centaur we heard earlier?" said Harry.
centaur = a mythical being that is half man and half horse
Word Statistics
Book12 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 15, p.254.43
Web Links
direct   (4 meanings)
4 meanings, 7 uses
1  —1 use as in:
depart directly
You asked me to come directly to you, Professor, if anyone was wandering around at night, and somebody's been in the library Restricted Section.
directly = straight (immediately—without going anywhere else first)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
without delay, or in the quickest manner, or without going somewhere else first
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12, p.207.1
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
directed her question to
Percy directed the girls through one door to their dormitory and the boys through another.
directed = sent
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
to indicate direction; or cause movement or focus in a direction or towards an object — such as
  • to aim a gun or comment at someone
  • to point in a particular direction
  • to focus attention on a particular object
  • to guide or give directions to someone to help them move to a particular place
  • to send someone to a particular place
  • to steer a car, boat, etc.
  • to send a letter to a particular person by putting a name and address on it
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library31 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 7, p.130.17
Web Links
3  —2 uses as in:
directed the jury to...
Ron started to direct the black pieces.†
direct = command
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
give instructions or commands
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 11, p.189.50
Web Links
4  —3 uses as in:
directed the movie
This was exactly like Muggle chess except that the figures were alive, which made it a lot like directing troops in battle.
directing = commanding
DefinitionGenerally this sense of direct means:
supervise, control, or to be in charge of
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library21 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12, p.199.61
Web Links
disgruntled
2 uses
Owls hooted to one another in a disgruntled sort of way over the babble and the scraping of heavy trunks.
disgruntled = annoyed
DefinitionGenerally disgruntled means:
in a bad mood - typically unhappy and annoyed
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6, p.94.18
Web Links
expulsion
13 uses
Be warned, Potter — any more nighttime wanderings and I will personally make sure you are expelled.
expelled = kicked out of school
DefinitionGenerally expulsion means:
the act of forcing out — such as:
  • kicking someone out of an organization — such as a school or country
  • squeezing something to eliminate a liquid or gas
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4, p.59.89
Web Links
nettle
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
beware of nettles near the river
He swept around in his long black cloak, watching them weigh dried nettles and crush snake fangs,
nettles = a type of plant that often has fine irritating hairs
DefinitionGenerally this sense of nettle means:
a type of plant with stinging or irritating hairs
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8, p.138.98
Web Links
reflection   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 10 uses
1  —9 uses as in:
my reflection in the mirror
If she was really there, he'd touch her, their reflections were so close together, but he felt only air — she and the others existed only in the mirror.
reflections = images (seen in a mirror)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of reflection means:
an image (seen on a mirror or other shiny surface)
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 12, p.208.63
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
lit by the reflection
Once he caught sight of a flash of gold, but it was just a reflection from one of the Weasleys' wristwatches,
reflection = light seen bouncing off a surface
DefinitionGenerally this sense of reflection means:
light seen after it bounces off a surface to another; or the process of bouncing light, sound, or other energy off of a surface
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 11, p.187.50
Web Links
resolution
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a New Year's resolution
Then, about a week before the exams were due to start, Harry's new resolution not to interfere in anything that didn't concern him was put to an unexpected test.
resolution = firm decision
DefinitionGenerally this sense of resolution means:
a firm decision to do something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 15, p.246.9
Web Links
tapestry
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
the tapestry hangs in the museum
He was too sleepy even to be surprised that the people in the portraits along the corridors whispered and pointed as they passed, or that twice Percy led them through doorways hidden behind sliding panels and hanging tapestries.
tapestries = heavy fabrics with woven pictures or designs — often hung on walls for display
DefinitionGenerally this sense of tapestry means:
a heavy fabric with a woven picture or design — often hung on a wall for display
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7, p.128.98
Web Links
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