toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Book Menu

In Cold Blood
Vocabulary

Extra Credit Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

(click/touch triangles for details)
approach   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
approached the city
Perhaps, having heard all she had, Bonnie welcomed their swift approach.†
approach = getting near
DefinitionGenerally this sense of approach means:
to get closer to
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library88 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
use the best approach
Of course, Dick was very literal-minded, very— he had no understanding of music, poetry-and yet when you got right down toot, Dick's literalness, his pragmatic approach to every subject, was the primary reason Perry had been attracted to him, for it made Dick seem, compared to himself, so authentically tough, invulnerable, "totally masculine.†
approach = technique (way of doing something)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of approach means:
a way of doing something; or a route that leads to a particular place
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
attribute   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 4 uses
1  —1 use as in:
It is an attribute of...
And yet this was at least a partially inaccurate impression, for now and again the prisoner glimpsed him as he paused to talk to other men, joke with them and laugh, and then he seemed carefree, jovial, generous: "The kind of person who might see the human side"-an important attribute, for the man was Roland H. Tate, Judge of the 32nd Judicial District, the jurist who would preside at the trial of the State of Kansas versus Smith and Hickock.†
attribute = characteristic
DefinitionGenerally this sense of attribute means:
a characteristic (of something or someone)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
2  —3 uses as in:
I attribute it to...
Dewey himself, did not believe the boy had "anything to do with it"; still, it was true that at this early stage of the investigation, Bobby was the only person to whom a motive, however feeble, could be attributed.
attributed = credited (pointed to as the cause of something)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of attribute means:
to credit (a source for something) — such as:
  • to say that something happened because of someone or something else
  • to indicate the source of an idea or quotation
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
correspond   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 2 uses
1  —1 use as in:
corresponding by email
Correspondence between you and your sister cannot serve anything but a purely social function.†
correspondence = communication by writing letters
DefinitionGenerally this sense of correspond means:
communicate by writing letters or email
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
foreign correspondent of the paper
But the bulkiest of Hickock's mud pies was aimed at the two defense attorneys, Arthur Fleming and Harrison Smith, whose "incompetence and inadequacy" were the chief cause of the correspondent's present predicament, for no real defense had been prepared or offered by them, and this lack of effort, it was implied, had been deliberate-an act of collusion between the defense and the prosecution.†
correspondent = reporter
DefinitionGenerally this sense of correspondent means:
a reporter — typically from a foreign country or with a particular expertise
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
explicit
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
explicit instructions
He hated the light bulb's monotonous surveillance; it disturbed his sleep and, more explicitly, endangered the success of a private project-escape.†
explicitly = clearly and specifically
DefinitionGenerally this sense of explicit means:
clear and with enough detail so there is no confusion
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
hypothesis
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
a study to test her hypothesis
The hypothesis of unconscious motivation explains why the murderers perceived innocuous and relatively unknown victims as provocative and thereby suitable targets for aggression.†
hypothesis = a seemingly reasonable, but unproven, explanation
DefinitionGenerally this sense of hypothesis means:
seemingly reasonable, but unproven idea or explanation based upon known facts
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
negative   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
negative feedback from customers
A negative grunt.†
negative = indicating an answer of "no"
DefinitionGenerally this sense of negative means:
to express criticism or disagreement, or (especially when talking over a radio or in a military setting) to say "no"
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
The test came back negative.
[of the lie-detector or polygraph test] The results of the test, to the dismay of Osprey's sheriff as well as Alvin Dewey, who does not believe in exceptional coincidences, were decisively negative.†
negative = indicating that a condition was not found to be present
DefinitionGenerally this sense of negative means:
did not find a condition or substance to be present
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
passage
1 use
...poems and literary quotations ("No man is an island, Entire of itself), and passages for newspapers and books paraphrased or quoted.†
passages = short parts of longer written works
DefinitionGenerally this sense of passage means:
a short part of a longer written work
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
phenomenon
1 use
But, no, his customer was merely experiencing what Johnson called the Solemn Moment-a phenomenon familiar to insurance salesmen.†
phenomenon = thing that exists
DefinitionGenerally phenomenon means:
something that exists or happened — especially something of special interest — sometimes someone or something that is extraordinary
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
positive   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
I'm absolutely positive!
Oh, I don't really miss it-the frenzy, and never a cab, and always worrying how one looks. Positively not.†
positively = absolutely (used for emphasis)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of positive means:
certain (having no doubt; or used for emphasis)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library18 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
had a positive effect
People were scarcely real to them, in the sense of being warmly or positively (or even angrily) felt about... The three men under sentence of death had shallow emotions regarding their own fate and that of their victims.†
positively = in a good or beneficial manner
DefinitionGenerally this sense of positive means:
good or beneficial
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
pugnacious
2 uses
Pete, a tiger-striped tom weighing fifteen pounds, is a well-known character around Garden City, famous for his pugnacity, which was the cause of his current hospitalization; a battle lost to a boxer dog had left him with wounds necessitating both stitches and antibiotics.
pugnacity = combativeness

(editor's note:  In this usage, tom is short for tomcat—a male cat.)
DefinitionGenerally pugnacious means:
combative in tone (as though ready to fight)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
querulous
1 use
Christmas carols were in the air; they issued from the radio of the four women and mixed strangely with Miami's sunshine and the cries of the querulous, never thoroughly silent seagulls.
querulous = habitually complaining
DefinitionGenerally querulous means:
habitually complaining — especially in a high-pitched whiny voice
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
somnolent
1 use
Perry looked at the invalid, still somnolent, dazed, deaf, and he looked at the boy, who returned his gaze calmly, not begging, not "asking for anything," and Perry remembered himself at that age, his own wanderings with an old man.
somnolent = drowsy
DefinitionGenerally somnolent means:
drowsy (sleepy)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
spurious
1 use
...and when in each instance the witness was shown photographs of Hickock and Perry Edward Smith, he had identified the former as the author of the spurious checks, the latter as his "silent" accomplice.
spurious = not genuine
DefinitionGenerally spurious means:
false; or not genuine — often seeming plausible, or intentionally deceptive
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
truncate
1 use
Perry, who could never find trousers to fit his truncated lower half, wore blue jeans rolled up at the bottom and a leather windbreaker.
truncated = shortened
DefinitionGenerally truncate means:
make shorter by terminating abruptly before the end
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
yield
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
will yield valuable data
First they trot the length of Main Street, stopping to scrutinize the engine grilles of parked automobiles, particularly those stationed in front of the two hotels, the Windsor and Warren, for these cars, usually the property of travelers from afar, often yield what the bony, methodical creatures are hunting: slaughtered birds-crows, chickadees, and sparrows foolhardy enough to have flown into the path of oncoming motorists.†
yield = provide
DefinitionGenerally this sense of yield means:
to produce (usually something wanted); or the thing or amount produced
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
Take Quiz
Go to Book Menu
Browse with Large-Screen
(more words/choices)
† 
Sample usage followed by this mark was not checked by an editor. Please let us know if you spot a problem.
SAT® is a registered trademark of the College Board, which is not affiliated with verbalworkout.com™, and does not endorse this site.