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Vocabulary

Top-Ranked Words with Typical Sample Sentences

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allege
3 uses
She alleged that she was the victim of a crime.
alleged = asserted (said) without proof
DefinitionGenerally allege means:
claim (asserted without proof)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 24
Web Links
blithe
5 uses
She spoke with blithe ignorance of the true situation.
blithe = carefree and happy
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
candid
2 uses
Don't worry about my feelings. I'd like your candid opinion.
candid = honest and direct
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
condemn
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
was condemned to life in prison
The murderer was condemned to death by injection.
condemned = legally sentenced to punishment
DefinitionGenerally this sense of condemn means:
force into an undesired activity or situation — such as to legally sentence someone to punishment

or:

find guilty — especially in court

or:

provide the means of finding guilty
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
contempt
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
feels contempt towards her
Familiarity breeds contempt.
contempt = lack of respect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contempt means:
lack of respect — often accompanied by a feeling of intense dislike or disgust
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
countenance
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
a pleasant countenance
She has a pleasant countenance.
countenance = facial expression; or face
DefinitionGenerally this sense of countenance means:
facial expression; or face; or composure
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 24
Web Links
daunt
2 uses
It is a challenge that would daunt a lesser diplomat.
daunt = discourage or intimidate
DefinitionGenerally daunt means:
to discourage or intimidate

(editor's note: The root word is most commonly seen as the adjective daunting which describes something as "discouraging or intimidating". Note that the "-less" suffix means without, so dauntless is to daunt as hopeless is to hope and careless is to care.)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
devious
1 use
She is devious and will do anything to win.
devious = deceitful (not honest and straightforward) — often in a complicated, clever manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 22
Web Links
disconcerting
3 uses
It was disconcerting to realize the experts don't really understand what is going on either.
disconcerting = disturbing
DefinitionGenerally disconcerting means:
disrupt composure — such as to confuse or worry
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 10
Web Links
doleful
1 use
It was another year of a doleful Detroit economy.
doleful = very sad; or causing sadness or misfortune
DefinitionGenerally doleful means:
expressing or causing sadness
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 28
Web Links
enmity
1 use
The war has deepened tribal enmity.
enmity = hatred between enemies
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
forbearance
2 uses
She recommended regulatory forbearance while the banks repair their balance sheets.
forbearance = refraining (holding back) from acting
DefinitionGenerally forbearance means:
refraining (holding back) from acting

or:

patience, tolerance, or self-control
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
heed
7 uses
Heed the advice of the old women.
heed = pay close attention to; or to do what is suggested
DefinitionGenerally heed means:
pay close attention to; or to do what is suggested — especially with regard to a warning or other advice
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
indulgent
1 use
Indulgent parents risk spoiling their children.
indulgent = treating with extra kindness or leniency (in this case, not demanding enough of the children)
DefinitionGenerally indulgent means:
to treat with extra kindness or tolerance
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
muse
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
her musings
He mused aloud about the afternoon's developments.
mused = reflected (thought) deeply
DefinitionGenerally this sense of muse means:
reflect (think) deeply on a subject — perhaps aloud
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 28
Web Links
prodigal
1 use
The rainforest is filled with a prodigal variety of vegetation.
prodigal = abundant (many, many kinds)
DefinitionGenerally prodigal means:
recklessly wasteful

or more rarely:

abundant (extravagant in amount)

or more rarely still:

long absent (someone who has been away a long time)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 30
Web Links
prodigious
3 uses
As a child, Mozart had a prodigious talent.
prodigious = enormous
DefinitionGenerally prodigious means:
enormous; or far beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 14
Web Links
remorse
4 uses
There was no sign of remorse until the police caught her.
remorse = deep regret for doing something that was wrong
DefinitionGenerally remorse means:
a feeling of deep regret for doing something that was wrong
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
reproach
3 uses
She reproached him for being thoughtless and lazy.
reproached = criticized
DefinitionGenerally reproach means:
a criticism; or to express criticism
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 24
Web Links
scarcity
32 uses
There is a scarcity of work in the region.
scarcity = shortage (an amount that is less than desired)
Word Statistics
Book32 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
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