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A Soldier of the Great War

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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aesthetic
24 uses
My field was the aesthetics of painting.
aesthetics = the study of what is beautiful
DefinitionGenerally aesthetic means:
related to beauty or good taste — often referring to one's appreciation of beauty or one's sense of what is beautiful

or:

beautiful or tasteful
Word Statistics
Book24 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
apprehend
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
apprehend the situation
Even death, Alessandro thought, would yield to beauty-if not in fact then in explanation-for the likeness of every great question could be found in forms as simple as songs, and there, if not explicable, they were at least perfectly apprehensible.
apprehensible = understandable
DefinitionGenerally this sense of apprehend means:
to understand or perceive (see or become aware of)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 3
Web Links
ascend   (2 meanings)
2 meanings, 2 uses
1  —1 use as in:
ascend the mountain
Orange sparks ascended from wave-like sheets of flame
ascended = moved upward
DefinitionGenerally this sense of ascend means:
to move or slope upward — sometimes figuratively as when climbing the corporate ladder
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
in ascending order
The difference between your flesh and the animate power within, which can feel, understand, and love, in that very ascending order, will be clear to you in ten thousand ways, ten thousand times over.†
ascending = moving from least important to most important
DefinitionGenerally this sense of ascend means:
move up a scale — as from smaller numbers to larger, or lower notes to higher
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
contrary   (5 meanings)
5 meanings, 14 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
a contrary idea
Alessandro had contrary and volatile opinions and did a good job of justifying them even when they were totally absurd.
contrary = opposite
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contrary means:
different (perhaps opposite or mutually exclusive)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
a contrary personality
"Later," Alessandro said, since part of his business was to be contrary.
contrary = disagreeable
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contrary means:
disagreeable — typically in reference to someone's personality
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
3  —2 uses as in:
contrary to
Contrary to most theologians, I have always believed that even worms and weasels have souls, and that even they are capable of salvation.
contrary to = in opposition to
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
4  —1 use as in:
on the contrary
"On the contrary," Alessandro answered. "You've outmaneuvered us, and we offer our consent because you've forced us to it."
on the contrary = an expression used to intensify denial of an idea
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 6
Web Links
5  —8 uses as in:
to the contrary
He would listen eagerly not because he had any hint of what the old man would elucidate, but, to the contrary, because he hadn't the vaguest idea of what had made the man who limped steadily alongside him on the road to Sant' Angelo and Monte Prato.
to the contrary = from an opposite effect
DefinitionGenerally this sense of to the contrary means:
with an opposite or different effect; or something with an opposite or different effect
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
descend
4 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
descend the mountain
They descended the Gianicolo on winding paths, streets, and stairs.
descended = moved downward
DefinitionGenerally this sense of descend means:
move or slope downward
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
elated
13 uses
"the man may know the greatest elation and the most savage despair-as if, in anticipation of eternity in heaven or in hell, he were previewing both."
elation = happiness and excitement

(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 elated means:
full of happiness and excitement
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
exalt
17 uses
The chariots of the exalted one are so near!
exalted = glorified (noble)
DefinitionGenerally exalt means:
praise, glorify, or honor

or:

fill with extreme happiness
Word Statistics
Book17 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
lucid
6 uses
Though drunk, Alessandro was lucid.
lucid = capable of thinking clearly
DefinitionGenerally lucid means:
of a person:  capable of thinking clearly

or:

of language:  clearly expressed so it is easily understood
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
obscure   (3 meanings)
3 meanings, 8 uses
1  —4 uses as in:
it obscured my view
The sky had grown light enough to obscure the stars and planets.
obscure = hide; or make less visible
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
to block from view or make less visible or understandable
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 1
Web Links
2  —1 use as in:
the view or directions are obscure
The women, whose husbands had been in the north for years, and who had been peeking at the two soldiers as they swam, had worked themselves into a frenzy. As if afflicted by a disease of the nerves, they made strange, unmistakable, and yet obscure gestures with their lips, tongues, jaws, eyes, hands, and fingers. ... Slamming his fist down now and then, he failed to notice that his daughter's eyes were glazed, or that his daughter-in-law stood behind him for a few seconds, placed both her hands on her breasts, touched her tongue to her nose, closed her eyes, gyrated her pelvis, and moaned like a wolf.
obscure = hidden (from the man who is talking and slamming his fists down)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not clearly seen, understood, or expressed
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
3  —3 uses as in:
knows the famous and the obscure
His eyes sought its infinitely high ceiling, and although they found nothing he felt as if he were going forward not to some obscure death but to the resurrection of beauty and a meeting with those who had gone before.
obscure = unimportant or undistinguished
DefinitionGenerally this sense of obscure means:
not known to many people; or unimportant or undistinguished
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
1st useChapter 5
Web Links
piazza
24 uses
He works on the next street over, between here and the piazza.
piazza = Italian for a plaza
DefinitionGenerally piazza means:
architecture:  Italian term for a plaza (large open square created or defined by several buildings forming a perimeter enclosure)
Word Statistics
Book24 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 7
Web Links
scribe
51 uses
Of course scribes have always cleared up their masters' punctuation, adding a comma here, a hyphen there.
scribes = workers employed to write copies of documents in the days before printing presses
DefinitionGenerally scribe means:
in the days before printing presses and related technology:  someone employed to write copies of documents or write what someone said
Word Statistics
Book51 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2
Web Links
sentry
31 uses
I want one sentry at the gate and one on the ramparts.
sentry = person who stands guard
DefinitionGenerally sentry means:
someone who stands guard
Word Statistics
Book31 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 4
Web Links
tranquil
24 uses
The air at two thousand meters was so thin and tranquil that it seemed to be only a gloss of the light.
tranquil = calm and undisturbed
Word Statistics
Book24 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1
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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