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Lord Jim

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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abject
18 uses
The verandah was empty by then, the noise and movement in court had ceased: a great silence fell upon the building, in which, somewhere far within, an oriental voice began to whine abjectly.†
abjectly = in an extremely negative manner — often implying extreme hopelessness, misery, shame, or desperation
DefinitionGenerally abject means:
extreme (in a negative sense such as misery, hopelessness, submissiveness, cruelty, or cowardice)
Word Statistics
Book18 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 29
Web Links
accord   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 9 uses
1  —8 uses as in:
according to, or in accord with
According to my theory he was not.†
according to = as stated by; or in agreement with
DefinitionGenerally this sense of accord means:
in keeping with; or in agreement/harmony/unity with
This sense of accord is often seen in the form according to or accordingly where it can take on more specific meanings. For example:
  • "According to Kim, ..." — as stated by
  • "To each according to her ability." — based upon
  • "Points are scored according to how well they perform." — depending upon
  • "The dose is calculated according to body weight." — in proportion to
  • "We got a flat tire. Accordingly, I pulled to the side of the road." — because of what was just said; or as a result
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library53 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 23
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
done of her own accord
Along the whole dim length of the gallery the voices dropped, the pale blotches of faces turned our way with one accord, and the silence became so profound that the clear tinkle of a teaspoon falling on the tesselated floor of the verandah rang out like a tiny and silvery scream.†
one accord = one mind (in agreement)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of accord means:
mind
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
approach   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 3 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
approached the city
He was a youngster of the sort you like to see about you; of the sort you like to imagine yourself to have been; of the sort whose appearance claims the fellowship of these illusions you had thought gone out, extinct, cold, and which, as if rekindled at the approach of another flame, give a flutter deep, deep down somewhere, give a flutter of light .... of heat!†
approach = coming
DefinitionGenerally this sense of approach means:
to get closer to (near in space, time, quantity, or quality)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library104 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 9
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
use the best approach
I was thinking how I had best approach him (I did not want to be flung off again) when he gave a little laugh.†
approach = 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
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
confound
33 uses
They said 'Confounded fool!' as soon as his back was turned.†
confounded = confused or frustrated
DefinitionGenerally confound means:
to confuse, prove wrong, frustrate, or express frustration
in various senses, including:
confuse or surprise — sometimes specifically to confuse one thing with another
  • "confounded by the puzzle" — confused or perplexed
  • "Test results confounded the experts." — surprised and confused
  • "Do not confound confidence with correctness." — mistake one thing for another
prove wrong, defeat, or frustrate
  • "The test results confounded my theory." — proved wrong
  • "Their defense confounded our offense." — defeated or frustrated
make worse
  • "She confounded the problem by painting without sanding." — made worse
  • "The task is complicated by other confounding factors." — making worse
an exclamation expressing anger or frustration
  • "Confound it! Will I ever get this thing to work?"
  • "I don't understand the confounded directions!"
Word Statistics
Book33 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
contempt
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
feels contempt towards her
Chester looked at me with infinite contempt.
contempt = lack of respect and dislike
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contempt means:
lack of respect for someone or something thought inferior — often accompanied by a feeling of dislike or disgust
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 31
Web Links
despair
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
do not despair
"You can't," he said very simply and gently, and holding fast to some deep idea which I could detect shimmering like a pool of water in the dark, but which I despaired of ever approaching near enough to fathom.†
despaired = lost hope
DefinitionGenerally this sense of despair means:
to lose hope
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 17
Web Links
dispose
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
disposed the troops along...
I had them ready at my disposal before she whispered softly, "He swore he would never leave me, when we stood there alone!"†
disposal = command

(editor's note:  When something is "at someone's disposal" it is "at their command," or "available for their use." They can use it as they please.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of dispose means:
the arrangement, positioning, or use of things
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 33
Web Links
establish
4 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
The old chap goes on equably trusting Providence and the established order of the universe, but alive to its small dangers and its small mercies.†
established = set in place
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 19
Web Links
grave
3 uses
My talk was of the material aspect of his position; it had the sole aim of saving him from the degradation, ruin, and despair that out there close so swiftly upon a friendless, homeless man; I pleaded with him to accept my help; I argued reasonably: and every time I looked up at that absorbed smooth face, so grave and youthful, I had a disturbing sense of being no help but rather an obstacle to some mysterious, inexplicable, impalpable striving of his wounded spirit.†
grave = serious and solemn
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
Book3 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 23
Web Links
infernal
19 uses
He looked as genuine as a new sovereign, but there was some infernal alloy in his metal.†
infernal = very bad; or very annoying; or characteristic of hell or the underworld
Word Statistics
Book19 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 18
Web Links
inquiry
23 uses
The illustration was good: the questions were aiming at facts, and the official Inquiry was being held in the police court of an Eastern port.†
inquiry = questioning or investigating
DefinitionGenerally inquiry means:
the act of asking a question or performing an investigation
Word Statistics
Book23 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
profound
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
profound sadness
profound grief
profound = intense (or deep)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of profound means:
of greatest intensity or emotional depth
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
recollect
12 uses
'Of course the recollection of my last conversation with Brierly is tinged with the knowledge of his end that followed so close upon it.†
recollection = memory

(editor's note:  The suffix "-tion", converts a verb into a noun that denotes the action or result of the verb. Typically, there is a slight change in the ending of the root verb, as in action, education, and observation.)
DefinitionGenerally recollect means:
to remember — especially experiences from long ago
Word Statistics
Book12 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
scorn
16 uses
'Drink!' repeated the engineer with amiable scorn: he was hanging on with both hands to the rail, a shadowy figure with flexible legs.†
scorn = disrespect or reject as not good enough
Word Statistics
Book16 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 14
Web Links
somber
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
a somber mood
His gaze was bent on the ground at his feet; the girl, erect and slight on his arm, stared sombrely beyond my shoulder with black, clear, motionless eyes.†
sombrely = solemnly (in a manner that is serious—not cheerful or lighthearted)

(editor's note:  This is a British spelling. Americans use somberly.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of somber means:
serious and without humor or fun — perhaps sad
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 9
Web Links
speculate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
don't know, but I'll speculate
Since Jim's arrival had been made known before daylight by the gun fired from the fort and the beating of the big drum there, the fear that had hung over Patusan had broken and subsided like a wave on a rock, leaving the seething foam of excitement, curiosity, and endless speculation.†
speculation = guessing and theorizing

(editor's note:  The suffix "-tion", converts a verb into a noun that denotes the action or result of the verb. Typically, there is a slight change in the ending of the root verb, as in action, education, and observation.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of speculate means:
to think about, wonder, guess or theorize with much uncertainty
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 42
Web Links
wallow
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
wallow happily in the mud
They wallow in your good chairs and think to themselves, "Hang exertion."
wallow = relax
DefinitionGenerally this sense of wallow means:
to relax — especially of an animal rolling about in mud or shallow water

or more rarely:  a noun describing the mud puddle or indentation in which an animal relaxes or rolls around
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 28
Web Links
wretched
16 uses
Can't he see that wretched skipper of his has cleared out?†
wretched = miserable or very bad
DefinitionGenerally wretched means:
very bad
in various senses, including:
  • unfortunate or miserable — as in "wretched prisoners sleeping on the cold floor"
  • of poor quality — as in "wretched roads"
  • morally bad — as in "The wretched woman stole his wallet."
Word Statistics
Book16 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
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