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The Shining

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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appropriate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
Congress will appropriate funds
Grimmer had to run an understaffed and underfunded institution and try to keep the whole thing together with spit, baling wire, and nickle-and-dime appropriations from a state legislature who had to go back and face the voters.
appropriations = budget

(editor's note:  The suffix "-tions", converts a verb into a plural noun that denotes results of the verb. Typically, there is a slight change in the ending of the root verb, as in actions, illustrations, and observations.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of appropriate means:
to set aside for a particular use
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
attribute
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
I attribute it to...
One child had had a convulsion while playing in the concrete rings, but Hallorann didn't know if that could be attributed to the Overlook's deadly siren song or not — word had gone around among the help that the child, the only daughter of a handsome movie actor, was a medically controlled epileptic who had simply forgotten her medicine that day.
attributed = credited (pointed to as the cause of something)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of attribute means:
to credit (a source for something)
in two typical senses:
  • "I attribute it to her work." — to say who or what made something happen
  • "Remember to attribute any quotations in your paper." — indicate the source of a quotation or idea
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
belligerent
1 use
The belligerent, I'm-sticking-up-for-my-rights way George was looking at him had sparked Jack's own temper.
belligerent = eager to fight
DefinitionGenerally belligerent means:
hostile (the attitude of one eager to fight); or one already engaged in a fight or war
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
candid
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
your candid opinion
"Yes, sir," Danny said candidly, "my daddy got fired from his teaching job and that's why we're in Colorado, I guess."
candidly = with honesty and directness
DefinitionGenerally this sense of candid means:
honest and direct
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
capricious
1 use
the wind was blowing a capricious gale - now from the west, now backing around to the north,
capricious = unpredictable
DefinitionGenerally capricious means:
impulsive or unpredictable or tending to make sudden changes — especially impulsive behavior
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
contempt
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
feels contempt towards her
The contemptuous smile flicked over his features again.
contemptuous = showing disrespect
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
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
contrast
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
there is a contrast
Warm light still spilled out of it, contrasting with the oily darkness of the shaft below.†
contrasting = differing
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contrast means:
a difference — especially a notable difference; or the side-x-side arrangement of things that draws attention to an unmissable difference
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
convey
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
convey her thoughts
The Board has asked me to convey its decision to you.†
convey = communicate or express
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
deference
2 uses
They watched him cross the lobby, touch Mrs. Brant's elbow deferentially,
deferentially = with polite respect
DefinitionGenerally deference means:
polite respect — often when submitting to another's wishes
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
doleful
1 use
But the driver was shaking his head dolefully.
dolefully = in a manner that was full of sadness
DefinitionGenerally doleful means:
expressing or causing sadness
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
dubious
1 use
[referring to a picture in a scary book]  "But you knew it couldn't hurt you, didn't you?"

"Ye - ess..." Danny said, a little dubious.
dubious = doubtful or suspicious
DefinitionGenerally dubious means:
doubtful
in various senses, including:
  • doubtful that something should be relied upon — as in "The argument relies on a dubious assumption."
  • doubtful that something is morally proper — as in "The company is accused of using dubious sales practices to influence minors."
  • bad or of questionable value — as in "The state has the dubious distinction of the highest taxes."
  • doubtful or uncertain — as in "She is dubious about making the change."
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
furtive
3 uses
He was thinking about ...about... Danny looked furtively behind him at the kitchen window. Sometimes thinking very hard made something happen to him.
furtively = nervously
DefinitionGenerally furtive means:
taking pains to avoid being observed

or:

in a manner indicating nervousness (being cautious or appearing suspicious)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
gesticulate
1 use
He could see the high cab, even the gesticulating figure of the driver behind the single long wiper blade.
gesticulating = making gestures (hand or body movements)
DefinitionGenerally gesticulate means:
to make gestures (hand or body movements) while speaking or to express something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
guile
1 use
He looked at her guilelessly, a milk mustache on his lip.
guilelessly = innocently — without cunning (shrewdness, cleverness) or deceit

(Editor's note:  The suffix "-lessly" in guilelessly means in a manner that is without. This is the same pattern you see in words like harmlessly, fearlessly, and remorselessly.)
DefinitionGenerally guile means:
cunning (shrewdness and cleverness) and deceitful
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
mallet
92 uses
The mallet hesitated at the top of its swing.
mallet = a piece of equipment for pounding or hitting — like a hammer with a large cylindrical head
DefinitionGenerally mallet means:
a piece of equipment for pounding or hitting
such as:
  • a tool resembling a hammer but with a large cylindrical head that is usually made of rubber or wood
  • a long stick with a thick cylindrical head used to hit a ball in polo or croquet
  • a light drumstick with a rounded head that is used to strike percussion instruments
Word Statistics
Book92 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
negative
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
negative feedback from customers
"No," he said, and smothered the two words that rose behind his lips after that simple negative: Not yet.†
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
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
perspective
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
Keep it in perspective
It had been Jack's idea to separate for a while — to get perspective on the relationship, he said.†
perspective = a sensible view
DefinitionGenerally this sense of perspective means:
a sensible view of a situation that considers its different parts in a balanced way
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
petulant
8 uses
There was nothing of the real Jack in that howling ... petulant voice, though.
petulant = unreasonably upset
DefinitionGenerally petulant means:
unreasonably annoyed or upset

or:

easily annoyed or upset
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
phenomenon
3 uses
Real psychic phenomena or group hypnosis?†
phenomena = observable things
DefinitionGenerally phenomenon means:
something that exists or happened — especially something of special interest — sometimes someone or something that is extraordinary
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
pragmatic
1 use
There was really only one question, and it was asked in a mental voice of utter coldness and pragmatism,
pragmatism = concern with practical matters
DefinitionGenerally pragmatic means:
concerned with practical matters — especially where quick results and/or practical experience triumph over theory
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
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Sample usage followed by this mark was not checked by an editor. Please let us know if you spot a problem.
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