toggle menu
menu
vocabulary
1000+ books
Book Menu

Cold Sassy Tree

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
amble
4 uses
We both laughed, ambling on towards the house.
ambling = walking leisurely
DefinitionGenerally amble means:
to walk leisurely or slowly
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
blasphemy
3 uses
"'Ask and it shall be given,' the Bible says. But it ain't so." I felt blasphemous even to think it, much less say it out loud.
blasphemous = disrespectful of something considered sacred
DefinitionGenerally blasphemy means:
something said or done that is disrespectful of something considered sacred — especially God or religion
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
condolence
3 uses
If a customer started saying her condolences, Grandpa would nod and cut her off with "You be needin' anythang else, ma'am?"
condolences = expressions of sympathy to another who is in sorrow — typically in grief over a death in the family
DefinitionGenerally condolence means:
an expression of sympathy to another who is in sorrow — typically in grief over a death in the family
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
congregation
1 use
But I like being part of a congregation.
congregation = people who worship together in the same building
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
contrite
2 uses
he didn't look contrite or guilty,
contrite = feeling sorrow or regret for a fault or offense
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
desecrate
3 uses
Then she can tell it all over town how we desecrated the Sabbath.
desecrated = violated the sacred nature of something

(editor's note:  The Sabbath is a day of each week some religions say should be treated as a day of religious observance.)
DefinitionGenerally desecrate means:
violate the sacred nature of something
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
Web Links
dumfounded
5 uses
And Mr. Blakeslee said maybe Will and the boys should go campin' for a few days first. Mama looked dumfounded.
dumfounded = bewildered (confused and surprised)
DefinitionGenerally dumfounded means:
very surprised - often too surprised to know what to say or do
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
epidemic
3 uses
I don't want no epidemic gittin' started in this town.
epidemic = a widespread outbreak of an infectious disease
DefinitionGenerally epidemic means:
a widespread outbreak of a disease that is passed from one person (or other organism) to another

or more rarely:  anything that spreads quickly — especially something bad
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
heresy
3 uses
Cudn Hope laughed, but Papa looked like he'd just heard heresy incarnate.
heresy = an immoral idea

(editor's note:  incarnate means "made real in a material sense")
DefinitionGenerally heresy means:
opinions or actions most people consider immoral
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
hypocrite
5 uses
"But I like being part of a congregation. I miss the people, Rucker."

"All them dang hypocrites?"

"My mother always said never expect church members to be perfect."
hypocrites = people who violate moral standards they claim to hold
DefinitionGenerally hypocrite means:
someone who violates claimed moral standards
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
lament
2 uses
"I have bought the mansion of a love, but not possess'd it" was his lament.
lament = expressed grief or regret
DefinitionGenerally lament means:
to express grief or regret
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
Web Links
oblige
6 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
I'm much obliged for your kindness
When Mr. Beach offered to carry me home in his buggy, I said, "Thank you, sir, I'd sure be much obliged."
obliged = grateful or indebted
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
recollect
12 uses
Please recollect the funeral I gave Miss Mattie Lou.
recollect = remember — especially experiences from long ago
DefinitionGenerally recollect means:
to remember — especially experiences from long ago
Word Statistics
Book12 uses
Library10 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
Web Links
rein
13 uses
What Grandpa would of really enjoyed, haw, was the sight of Mr. Birdsong reining in the black horses pulling his ambulance-hearse just as our procession turned into the street!
reining in = restraining
DefinitionGenerally this sense of rein means:
to restrain or control; or a means of control
The meaning of rein depends upon its context. For example:
  • "keep a tight rein on the new employee," or "rein in a horse" — to control or restrain
  • "give the new employee free rein," or "give the horse full rein" — do not restrain
  • "the reins of government" — means of control
  • "the reins of the horse" — leather straps used with a bit to control a horse (You might like to think of other senses of rein as being figurative derivations from this sense.)
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
repentance
3 uses
Nobody was sure that Camp's asking God's forgiveness before he pulled the trigger counted as much as if he had lived long enough to repent after doing the deed.
repent = feel regret for having done wrong and resolve to be a better person in the future
DefinitionGenerally repentance means:
the feeling or expression of regret for having done something wrong with a firm decision to be a better person in the future
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
sacrilege
5 uses
Don't talk sacrilege.
sacrilege = disrespect of something others consider important — especially something sacred
DefinitionGenerally sacrilege means:
disrespect of something others consider important or sacred
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
Shakespeare
6 uses
She gave us lectures on women's suffrage, Shakespeare, Beethoven, English history, and horticulture, and always had two freezers of homemade ice cream, which was why we all went.
Shakespeare = author widely regarded as the greatest in the English language and whose works include Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet
DefinitionGenerally this sense of Shakespeare means:
English dramatist and poet frequently cited as the greatest writer in the English language and who wrote such works as Romeo and Juliet and Hamlet (1564-1616)
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
superintendent
3 uses
And he had finally done what the school superintendent never could.
superintendent = a person who directs and manages an organization — such as a school district
DefinitionGenerally superintendent means:
a person who directs and manages an organization — such as a school district

or:

a caretaker of a building — such as an apartment building
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
tirade
2 uses
After her tirade down at the store last week, how can you think it's just me and Sister keepin' the town talkin'?
tirade = speech of angry criticism
DefinitionGenerally tirade means:
a speech of angry criticism
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
wizened
2 uses
The wizened hand reached out to pat Miss Love's arm.
wizened = lean and wrinkled — probably from age
DefinitionGenerally wizened means:
thin and wrinkled — typically from age or illness
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
Web Links
Go to Book Menu
Take Pre-Reading Quiz
SAT® is a registered trademark of the College Board, which is not affiliated with verbalworkout.com™, and does not endorse this site.