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A Christmas Memory

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

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accord
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
according to, or in accord with
According to her calculations, we have $12.†
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
Book2 uses
Library53 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
accumulate
1 use
But one way and another we do each year accumulate Christmas savings, a Fruitcake Fund.†
accumulate = collect or gradually increase
DefinitionGenerally accumulate means:
to collect or gradually increase
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
Web Links
cavort
1 use
Satisfied, sun-warmed, we sprawl in the grass and peel Satsumas and watch our kites cavort.†
cavort = play in a lively, unrestrained manner
DefinitionGenerally cavort means:
to play in a lively, unrestrained manner — typically with someone — sometimes implying sexual play
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
Web Links
chastise
1 use
A mile more: of chastising thorns, burrs and briers that catch at our clothes; of rusty pine needles brilliant with gaudy fungus and molted feathers.†
chastising = scolding or criticizing
DefinitionGenerally chastise means:
to scold or criticize
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
confound
1 use
It's bad enough in life to do without something you want; but confound it, what gets my goat is not being able to give somebody something you want them to have.†
confound = confuse or frustrate
DefinitionGenerally confound means:
to confuse, prove wrong, frustrate, or express frustration
in various senses, including:
confuse or surprise — sometimes specifically to confuse one thing with another
  • "confounded by the puzzle" — confused or perplexed
  • "Test results confounded the experts." — surprised and confused
  • "Do not confound confidence with correctness." — mistake one thing for another
prove wrong, defeat, or frustrate
  • "The test results confounded my theory." — proved wrong
  • "Their defense confounded our offense." — defeated or frustrated
make worse
  • "She confounded the problem by painting without sanding." — made worse
  • "The task is complicated by other confounding factors." — making worse
an exclamation expressing anger or frustration
  • "Confound it! Will I ever get this thing to work?"
  • "I don't understand the confounded directions!"
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
conspiracy
1 use
Silently, wallowing in the pleasures of conspiracy, we take the bead purse from its secret place and spill its contents on the scrap quilt.
conspiracy = a secret agreement or plot
DefinitionGenerally conspiracy means:
a secret agreement or plot — especially to do something illegal or harmful
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
deceive
1 use
Our backs hurt from gathering them: how hard they were to find (the main crop having been shaken off the trees and sold by the orchard's owners, who are not us) among the concealing leaves, the frosted, deceiving grass.†
deceiving = lying or misleading
DefinitionGenerally deceive means:
to lie to or mislead someone — occasionally to lie to oneself by denying reality
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
emerge
1 use
One by one the household emerges, looking as though they'd like to kill us both; but it's Christmas, so they can't.†
emerges = comes out of, or appears
DefinitionGenerally emerge means:
to come out, or to appear
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library58 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
Web Links
however
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
However, complications may...
She is proudest, however, of a white wool shawl knitted by her married sister.†
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
Book1 use
Library61 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
Web Links
moreover
1 use
And it is very beautiful; though not as beautiful as the one she made me, which is blue and scattered with gold and green Good Conduct stars; moreover, my name is painted on it, "Buddy."†
moreover = in addition to what has just been said
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
Web Links
nevertheless
1 use
Nevertheless, he retreats into the shadowed cafe and seconds later appears carrying a bottle of daisy-yellow unlabeled liquor.†
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
Web Links
opera
1 use
A trunk in the attic contains: a shoebox of ermine tails (off the opera cape of a curious lady who once rented a room in the house), coils of frazzled tinsel gone gold with age, one silver star, a brief rope of dilapidated, undoubtedly dangerous candylike light bulbs.†
opera = a musical play with orchestra in which most of the dialogue is sung (or the art form that consists of such musicals; or describing something as related to that art form)
DefinitionGenerally opera means:
a musical play with orchestra in which most dialogue is sung — (typically associated with classical music and often in a language foreign to the audience)

or:

the art form (or describing something as related to it) that consists of musical plays with orchestra in which most dialogue is sung
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
paralysis
1 use
For a moment we are too paralyzed to tell.†
paralyzed = made unable to move or make a decision
DefinitionGenerally paralysis means:
loss of the ability to move the body or a part of it

or:

inability to act or make a decision
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library15 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
persist
1 use
The mill owner's wife persists.†
persists = continues
DefinitionGenerally persist means:
to continue — often despite difficulty
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library11 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
Web Links
sacrilege
1 use
It's just that we enter any contest we hear about: at the moment our hopes are centered on the fifty-thousand-dollar Grand Prize being offered to name a new brand of coffee (we suggested "A.M."; and, after some hesitation, for my friend thought it perhaps sacrilegious, the slogan "A.M.!†
sacrilegious = disrespectful of something others consider important — especially something sacred
DefinitionGenerally sacrilege means:
disrespect of something others consider important or sacred
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
simultaneous
1 use
But by and by we begin to sing, the two of us singing different songs simultaneously.†
simultaneously = at the same time
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library14 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 2000
Web Links
squander
1 use
Besides, a person my age shouldn't squander their eyes.†
squander = waste
DefinitionGenerally squander means:
to waste — money, resources, or opportunities
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
stationery
1 use
Also, the scrapbooks we keep of thank-you's on White House stationery, time-to-time communications from California and Borneo, the knife grinder's penny post cards, make us feel connected to eventful worlds beyond the kitchen with its view of a sky that stops.†
stationery = paper and envelopes for writing letters
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
stoke
1 use
The black stove, stoked with coal and firewood, glows like a lighted pumpkin.†
stoked = added fuel or stirred a fire to make it burn hotter; or made feelings stronger
DefinitionGenerally stoke means:
to add fuel or stir a fire to make it burn hotter; or to make feelings stronger
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
Web Links
wrath
1 use
Listen to what they have to say, the words tumbling together into a wrathful tune: "A child of seven! whiskey on his breath! are you out of your mind? feeding a child of seven! must be loony! road to ruination! remember Cousin Kate?†
wrathful = full of extreme anger
DefinitionGenerally wrath means:
extreme anger or angry punishment
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library9 uses in 10 avg bks
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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