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Their Eyes Were Watching God

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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beseech
1 use
Jim Weston had secretly borrowed a dime and soon he was loudly beseeching Daisy to have a treat on him.
beseeching = asking or begging
DefinitionGenerally beseech means:
to ask strongly or beg for something
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
conjecture
1 use
Finally out of Nanny's talk and her own conjectures she made a sort of comfort for herself.
conjectures = conclusions or opinions based on inconclusive evidence
DefinitionGenerally conjecture means:
a conclusion or opinion based on inconclusive evidence; or the act of forming of such a conclusion or opinion
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
convention
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
to convene
Dey made him uh delegate tuh de Sunday School Convention and he read uh paper on Booker T. Washington and tore him tuh pieces!
convention = formal gathering
DefinitionGenerally this sense of convention means:
a large conference or meeting
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
decorum
1 use
He had scented the matter as quickly as any of the rest, but decorum demanded that he sit oblivious until he was notified.
decorum = proper manners and conduct
DefinitionGenerally decorum means:
manners and conduct considered to be proper and in good taste
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
desecrate
2 uses
The vision of Logan Killicks was desecrating the pear tree, but Janie didn't know how to tell Nanny that.
desecrating = violating the sacred character of
DefinitionGenerally desecrate means:
violate the sacred nature of something
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
discriminate
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
discriminating taste
All gods dispense suffering without reason. ... Through indiscriminate suffering men know fear...
indiscriminate = not recognizing differences and choosing people randomly for

(Editor's note:  The prefix "in-" in indiscriminate means not and reverses the meaning of discriminate. This is the same pattern you see in words like invisible, incomplete, and insecure.)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of discriminate means:
to recognize or perceive differences — especially fine distinctions
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
divine
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
to forgive is divine
Mrs. Tony's ecstasy was divine.
divine = wonderful
DefinitionGenerally this sense of divine means:
wonderful; or god-like or coming from God
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
eulogy
1 use
Starks led off with a great eulogy on our departed citizen, our most distinguished citizen and the grief he left behind him, and the people loved the speech.
eulogy = speech praising someone who recently died
DefinitionGenerally eulogy means:
a formal expression of praise — typically a speech given at someone's funeral
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
fanatic
2 uses
Beyond her faith was a fanaticism to defend the altars of her god.
fanaticism = extreme enthusiasm
DefinitionGenerally fanatic means:
a person motivated by extreme enthusiasm (as for a cause) — sometimes to a fault

or:

extremely enthusiastic — sometimes to a fault
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 16
Web Links
futile
2 uses
...Janie knew the futile fight was not with her.
futile = pointless (useless because it will be unproductive or unsuccessful)
DefinitionGenerally futile means:
effort that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
impact
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
her impact on foreign policy
Janie soon began to feel the impact of awe and envy against her sensibilities.
impact = influence or effect
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
incredulous
1 use
They tried hard to hold it in, but enough incredulous laughter burst out of their eyes and leaked from the corners of their mouths to inform anyone of their thoughts.
incredulous = unbelieving
DefinitionGenerally incredulous means:
unbelieving; or having difficulty accepting something so unexpected
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
indifferent
2 uses
Joe rolled his cigar in his mouth and rolled his eyes away indifferently.
indifferently = as though not very interested
DefinitionGenerally indifferent means:
without interest
in various senses, including:
  • unconcerned — as in "She is indifferent to what is served to eat."
  • unsympathetic — as in "She is indifferent to his needs."
  • not of good quality (which may imply average or poor quality depending upon context) — as in "an indifferent performance"
  • impartial — as in "We need a judge who is indifferent."
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
languish
1 use
So Ah got up on de high stool lak she told me, but Pheoby, Ah done nearly languished tuh death up dere.
languished = suffered in a bad situation for a long time
DefinitionGenerally languish means:
to suffer in a bad situation for a long time
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 12
Web Links
malicious
5 uses
He says he never mean to lay de weight uh his hand on me in malice.
malice = wanting to see others suffer
DefinitionGenerally malicious means:
wanting to see others suffer; or threatening evil
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
ostentatious
1 use
They came to the store and ostentatiously looked over whatever she was doing and went back to report to him at the house.
ostentatiously = in a manner intended to attract notice
DefinitionGenerally ostentatious means:
intended to attract notice and impress others — especially with wealth in a vulgar way
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
pacify
3 uses
You ain't tried tuh pacify nobody but yo'self.
pacify = calm from violence
DefinitionGenerally pacify means:
calm someone who is angry; or establish peace
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 8
Web Links
scorn
8 uses
Making all that show of humbleness and scorning him all the time!
scorning = rejecting as not good enough
DefinitionGenerally scorn means:
disrespect or reject as not good enough
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 11
Web Links
stolid
2 uses
She got so she received all things with the stolidness of the earth which soaks up urine and perfume with the same indifference.
stolidness = lack of emotion

(Editor's note:  The suffix "-ness" converts an adjective to a noun that means the quality of. This is the same pattern you see in words like darkness, kindness, and coolness.)
DefinitionGenerally stolid means:
having or revealing little emotion — sometimes indicating qualities of not changing or being dependable

or (much more rarely):

of an object:  not interesting — often large and unmoving
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
tangible
1 use
...every step he took made the thing more tangible.
tangible = real
DefinitionGenerally tangible means:
capable of being touched, or easily understood so there is no question of its value or reality
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
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