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Black Boy

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
accord
8 uses
1  —7 uses as in:
according to, or in accord with
At intervals Miss Simon would make a tour of inspection, examining the pile of pulled grass beside each child, scolding or praising according to the size of the pile.†
according to = as stated by; or in agreement with
DefinitionGenerally this sense of accord means:
in keeping with; or in agreement/harmony/unity with
This sense of accord is often seen in the form according to or accordingly where it can take on more specific meanings. For example:
  • "According to Kim, ..." — as stated by
  • "To each according to her ability." — based upon
  • "Points are scored according to how well they perform." — depending upon
  • "The dose is calculated according to body weight." — in proportion to
  • "We got a flat tire. Accordingly, I pulled to the side of the road." — because of what was just said; or as a result
Word Statistics
Book7 uses
Library53 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.19
Web Links
unquizzed meaning  —1 use
consequence
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
a direct consequence of
Consequently I stopped studying.†
consequently = resultantly (as a result)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
a result of something (often an undesired side effect)
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library28 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1.4
Web Links
context
1 use
I ran across many words whose meanings I did not know, and I either looked them up in a dictionary or, before I had a chance to do that, encountered the word in a context that made its meaning clear.†
context = the setting or situation in which something occurs
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1.13
Web Links
descend
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
thieves descended upon us
"And at last the darkness of the night descended and softly kissed the surface of the watery grave and the only sound was the lonely rustle of the ancient trees," I wrote as I penned the final line.†
descended = arrived
DefinitionGenerally this sense of descend means:
to come or arrive — especially suddenly or from above or as an attack
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.4
Web Links
despair
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
do not despair
The students around me seemed so sure of themselves that I despaired of ever being able to conduct myself as they did.†
despaired = lost hope
DefinitionGenerally this sense of despair means:
to lose hope
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
enable
6 uses
My fantasies were a moral bulwark that enabled me to feel I was keeping my emotional integrity whole, a support that enabled my personality to limp through days lived under the threat of violence.†
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
Book6 uses
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2.17
Web Links
establish
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
An absolute had first to be established in the minds of the comrades so that they could measure the success or failure of their deeds by it.†
established = created
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 2.19
Web Links
evoke
9 uses
Their faces possessed the power of evoking in me a million memories that I longed to forget, and instead of my leaving drawing me to them in communion, it had flung me forever beyond them.†
evoking = calling forth or causing
DefinitionGenerally evoke means:
to call forth or cause — typically to arouse an emotion or bring a memory to mind
Word Statistics
Book9 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 1.2
Web Links
ferret out
1 use
If I were a member of the class that rules, I would post men in all the neighborhoods of the nation, not to spy upon or club rebellious workers, not to break strikes or disrupt unions; but to ferret out those who no longer respond to the system in which they live.
ferret out = search for and discover through persistent investigation
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.17
Web Links
futile
10 uses
Rebelling against futile hope and embracing flight.†
futile = effort that is pointless because it is unproductive or unsuccessful
Word Statistics
Book10 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
grave
3 uses
How on earth could I have made so grave a mistake?†
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
Book3 uses
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useChapter 2.19
Web Links
highlight
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
highlights of the year
For him, this was perhaps the highlight of an otherwise bleak existence.†
highlight = best part
DefinitionGenerally this sense of highlight means:
something that stands out
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.19
intellectual
6 uses
1  —6 uses as in:
She is an intellectual.
It was irrational that Communists should hate what they called "intellectuals," or anybody who tried to think for himself.†
intellectuals = highly educated people interested in learning and exploring ideas — sometimes while ignoring practical considerations
DefinitionGenerally this sense of intellectual means:
a highly educated person interested in learning and exploring ideas — sometimes while ignoring practical considerations
Word Statistics
Book6 uses
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.19
militant
11 uses
Appreciation of the thoroughness of white militancy.†
militancy = the quality of using extreme or violent actions to achieve a political goal
DefinitionGenerally militant means:
using extreme or violent methods used to achieve a political goal; or someone who uses such methods
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.5
Web Links
naive
24 uses
Naively I wanted to go and see how the whites looked while sitting in their part of the train.†
naively = lacking experience or sophistication, and the understanding that comes from them — often too trusting or optimistic
Word Statistics
Book24 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
nevertheless
2 uses
Nevertheless, I was so starved for association with people that I allowed myself to be seduced by it all, and for a few months I lived the life of an optimist.†
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
Book2 uses
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useChapter 1.6
Web Links
objective
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
an objective viewpoint
I did not think that there existed many whites who, through intellectual effort, could lift themselves out of the traditions of their times and see the Negro objectively.
objectively = in an unbiased manner (in this case, based upon facts rather than prejudicial assumptions)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of objective means:
fact-based without the influence of personal feelings or preferences
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useChapter 2.18
Web Links
secular
1 use
She proposed that, when the fall school term started, I should be enrolled in the religious school rather than a secular one.
secular = non-religious
DefinitionGenerally secular means:
not religious
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.4
Web Links
Soviet Union
13 uses
The party in the Soviet Union had trouble with people like that.†
Soviet Union = a former communist country that fought the cold war with the United States and which consisted of Russia and 14 other soviet socialist republics; established 1922 and officially dissolved 31 December 1991
Word Statistics
Book13 uses
Library5 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 2.19
Web Links
yearn
11 uses
But how could a man build a life upon vague, unformed yearnings?†
yearnings = strong desires
DefinitionGenerally yearn means:
have a strong desire — often for something difficult or impossible to have
Word Statistics
Book11 uses
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useChapter 1.1
Web Links
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