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Winesburg, Ohio

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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ambivalent
1 use
The revolt against the village (about which Anderson was always ambivalent) has faded into history.†
ambivalent = with mixed feelings
DefinitionGenerally ambivalent means:
having mixed feelings about something — such as when part of you wants to do something and part of you does not
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useIntr.
Web Links
compel
4 uses
In the path at the side of the road they were compelled to walk one behind the other.†
compelled = forced; or (more rarely) convinced
DefinitionGenerally compel means:
to force someone to do something

or more rarely:

to convince someone to do something
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
convention
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
conventional behavior
She expected from all people certain conventional reactions to life.†
conventional = normal or typical
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convention means:
something regarded as normal or typical
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
dubious
1 use
And as for the effort to place Winesburg, Ohio in a tradition of American realism, that now seems dubious.†
dubious = doubtful; or suspicious; or full of uncertainty — sometimes to indicate that something described as good is actually bad
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 useIntr.
Web Links
egotistical
2 uses
The mild, blue-eyed young Ohio boy was a complete egotist, as all children are egotists.†
egotists = people who are conceited and self-centered
DefinitionGenerally egotistical means:
conceited and self-centered
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 15
Web Links
enable
1 use
In the one year Jesse made enough money to pay for all the cost of preparing the land and had a surplus that enabled him to buy two more farms.†
enabled = made possible
DefinitionGenerally enable means:
to make possible
in various senses, including:
  • to give someone the ability, knowledge, or authority to do something — as in "The study will enable an informed discussion."
  • to activate a computer system for use — as in "You can enable the feature in the Settings Page."
  • to permit someone to repeat bad behavior, so they reinforce the bad pattern — as in "I don't want to enable her drug addiction."
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
evoke
1 use
Anderson evokes a depressed landscape in which lost souls wander about; they make their flitting appearances mostly in the darkness of night, these stumps and shades of humanity.†
evokes = calls forth or causes
DefinitionGenerally evoke means:
to call forth or cause — typically to arouse an emotion or bring a memory to mind
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useIntr.
Web Links
hideous
4 uses
Strange, hideous accusations fell from his loosehung lips.†
hideous = extremely ugly, offensive, and/or frightening
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
however
5 uses
1  —5 uses as in:
However, complications may...
It will, however, be necessary to talk a little of young Hal so that you will get into the spirit of it.†
however = a word used to connect contrasting ideas as when using though, in spite of that, in contrast, nevertheless, etc.
DefinitionGenerally this sense of however means:
though (or another expression that connects contrasting ideas)

(Based on idea 1 we might not expect idea 2, but this is a way of saying that even though idea 1 exists, we still have idea 2.  Synonyms include in spite of that, , nevertheless, nonetheless, on the other hand, in contrastand but.)
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library61 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useIntr.
Web Links
ignominious
1 use
To be beaten seemed to be infinitely better than to be thus hurled ignominiously aside.†
ignominiously = in a manner that deserves or brings disgrace or shame
DefinitionGenerally ignominious means:
deserving or bringing disgrace or shame — typically in reference to behavior or character
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
insistent
7 uses
In the woods an intense silence seemed to lie over everything and suddenly out of the silence came the old man's harsh and insistent voice.†
insistent = persistent or continuing or firm
DefinitionGenerally insistent means:
persistent or continuing or firm — especially in maintaining a view or demanding something
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
manifest
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
manifest destiny
After ten years in this town, God has manifested himself to me in the body of a woman.†
manifested = made obvious (or shown)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of manifest means:
obvious; or to make obvious; or to show or demonstrate
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
minute
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
minute size
It was as though her woman's hand was assisting him to make some minute readjustment of the machinery of his life.†
minute = small
DefinitionGenerally this sense of minute means:
small, exceptionally small, or insignificant
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 21
Web Links
nevertheless
1 use
Something he saw lurking in the staring eyes told him that the man who had nothing to say to others had nevertheless something to say to him.†
nevertheless = in spite of that (used to connect contrasting ideas)
DefinitionGenerally nevertheless means:
in spite of that (Used to connect contrasting ideas. Other synonyms could include words and phrases such as nonetheless, all the same, still,  and however.)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 10
Web Links
perplex
7 uses
Without looking back, the old man had hurried down the hillside and across a meadow, leaving George Willard perplexed and frightened upon the grassy slope.†
perplexed = confused or puzzled
DefinitionGenerally perplex means:
to confuse
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
precede
1 use
In actuality, Anderson developed an artful style in which, following Mark Twain and preceding Ernest Hemingway, he tried to use American speech as the base of a tensed rhythmic prose that has an economy and a shapeliness seldom found in ordinary speech or even oral narration.†
preceding = prior (in time or space)
DefinitionGenerally precede means:
to go or do before
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useIntr.
Web Links
primarily
1 use
Ostensibly she went to see the doctor because of her health, but on the half dozen occasions when she had been to see him the outcome of the visits did not primarily concern her health.†
primarily = mainly
DefinitionGenerally primarily means:
mainly (most importantly)
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 20
Web Links
protrude
5 uses
He always wore a dirty white waistcoat out of the pockets of which protruded a number of the kind of black cigars known as stogies.†
protruded = stuck out
DefinitionGenerally protrude means:
to stick out from
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 21
Web Links
squalid
2 uses
When his way homeward led him again into the street of frame houses he could not bear the sight and began to run, wanting to get quickly out of the neighborhood that now seemed to him utterly squalid and commonplace.†
squalid = dirty and unpleasant; or (more rarely) immoral
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
wrath
7 uses
As his hard knuckles beat down into the frightened face of the school-master, his wrath became more and more terrible.†
wrath = extreme anger
DefinitionGenerally wrath means:
extreme anger or angry punishment
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
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