toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Book Menu

Vanity Fair

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
acquit
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
she acquitted herself well
Well, in a word, she and her mother performed a great day's shopping, and she acquitted herself with considerable liveliness and credit on this her first appearance in the genteel world of London.†
acquitted = handled (conducted or behaved)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of acquit means:
to handle oneself in a specified way — which is typically in a positive way
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 26
Web Links
allude
18 uses
Everybody felt the allusion to her departure, and to her hapless orphan state.†
allusion = an indirect reference

(editor's note:  The suffix "-sion", 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 admission from admit, discussion from discuss, and invasion from invade.)
DefinitionGenerally allude means:
to make an indirect reference
Word Statistics
Book18 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 37
Web Links
amiable
31 uses
He was most affectionate in his inquiries regarding that amiable relative.†
amiable = friendly, agreeable, and likable
Word Statistics
Book31 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
appropriate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
it is appropriate
Year after year he quietly and modestly amassed money, and when at length that snug and complete bachelor's residence at No. 201, Curzon Street, May Fair, lately the residence of the Honourable Frederick Deuceace, gone abroad, with its rich and appropriate furniture by the first makers, was brought to the hammer, who should go in and purchase the lease and furniture of the house but Charles Raggles?†
appropriate = suitable (fitting)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of appropriate means:
suitable (fitting) for a particular situation
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library28 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 37
Web Links
benevolent
20 uses
But persons who think otherwise, and are of a lazy, or a benevolent, or a sarcastic mood, may perhaps like to step in for half an hour, and look at the performances.†
benevolent = kind, generous, or charitable
Word Statistics
Book20 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 21
Web Links
condescending
29 uses
She did not even condescend to come back and say good-bye to Amelia.
condescend = do something considered beneath her position or dignity
DefinitionGenerally condescending means:
treating others as inferior; or doing something considered beneath one's position or dignity
Word Statistics
Book29 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 14
Web Links
contrast
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
there is a contrast
Diamonds and mahogany, my dear! think what an advantageous contrast—and the white feathers in her hair—I mean in her wool.†
contrast = notable difference
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
Book3 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 20
Web Links
descend
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
thieves descended upon us
At half-past nine he rose and went to the City, and she was almost free till dinner-time, to make visitations in the kitchen and to scold the servants; to drive abroad and descend upon the tradesmen, who were prodigiously respectful; to leave her cards and her papa's at the great glum respectable houses of their City friends; or to sit alone in the large drawing-room, expecting visitors; and working at a huge piece of worsted by the fire, on the sofa, hard by the great Iphigenia clock,...†
descend = come or arrive
DefinitionGenerally this sense of descend means:
to come or arrive — especially suddenly or from above or as an attack
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 42
Web Links
discredit
2 uses
He did not believe a word of the story, and yet, how discredit or disprove it?
discredit = cause distrust of or disbelief in
DefinitionGenerally discredit means:
damage the reputation of — often causing distrust of or disbelief in
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
dismal
30 uses
She thought of her long past life, and all the dismal incidents of it.†
dismal = depressing or gloomy
DefinitionGenerally dismal means:
of terrible quality or depressing; or dark and dreary (as when bad weather blocks the sun or when it is drizzly)
Word Statistics
Book30 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 29
Web Links
dispose
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
disposed the troops along...
...every trinket I have should be at your disposal though they would not fetch a hundred pounds,†
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
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 50
Web Links
entreat
31 uses
Rawdon was only too happy at her resolve; he had been entreating her to take this measure any time for weeks past.†
entreating = asking earnestly
DefinitionGenerally entreat means:
to ask — especially while trying hard to overcome resistance
Word Statistics
Book31 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
establish
6 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
Georgy Osborne was now fairly established in his grandfather's mansion in Russell Square, occupant of his father's room in the house and heir apparent of all the splendours there.†
established = settled
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 37
Web Links
grave
15 uses
By good conduct, a handsome person and calves, and a grave demeanour, Raggles rose from the knife-board to the footboard of the carriage; from the footboard to the butler's pantry.†
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
Book15 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
illustrate
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
as illustrated by this example
Sir William Dobbin had a great opinion of his son and narrated many stories illustrative of the Major's learning, valour, and estimation in the world's opinion.†
illustrative = serving to help explain or demonstrate something

(editor's note:  The suffix "-ive" converts a word into an adjective; though over time, what was originally an adjective often comes to be used as a noun. The adjective pattern means tending to and is seen in words like attractive, impressive, and supportive. Examples of the noun include narrative, alternative, and detective.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of illustrate means:
to help make clear — typically by example
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 10
1st useChapter 61
Web Links
mollify
6 uses
Lady Grizzel was won by her humility and was mollified towards the little woman.
mollified = calmed
DefinitionGenerally mollify means:
calm someone who is or may become angry or upset
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 26
Web Links
novel
2 uses
Is the circumstance strange or novel?†
novel = new and original
DefinitionGenerally this sense of novel means:
new and original — typically something considered good
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
odious
41 uses
A stranger was administering her medicines—a stranger from the country—an odious Miss ....†
odious = extremely unpleasant, disgusting, dislikable, or worthy of hate
Word Statistics
Book41 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
prodigious
46 uses
He wiped his pale face with a large yellow bandanna pocket-handkerchief that was prodigiously scented.†
prodigiously = enormously; or with a magnitude or degree that is far beyond what is usual
DefinitionGenerally prodigious means:
enormous; or far beyond what is usual in magnitude or degree
Word Statistics
Book46 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
yield
5 uses
1  —5 uses as in:
yield to pressure
A hundred times on the point of yielding, she had shrunk back from a sacrifice which she felt was too much for her.†
yielding = giving in, giving up, or giving way (easily moved or soft)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of yield means:
to give in, give way, or give up
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 66
Web Links
Go to Book Menu
Take Pre-Reading Quiz
† 
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.