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Abraham Lincoln and the Self-Made Myth

Top-Ranked Words with Sample Sentences from the Book

instructions
abolish
5 uses
"Slavery," Fitzhugh predicted, "will everywhere be abolished, or everywhere be reinstituted."†
abolished = eliminated (did away with)
DefinitionGenerally abolish means:
eliminate (end, or do away with)
Word Statistics
Book5 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 4
Web Links
attain
2 uses
But few have been able to point to such a sudden ascent from relative obscurity to high eminence; none has maintained so completely while scaling the heights the aspect of extreme simplicity; and none has combined with the attainment of success and power such122 an intense awareness of humanity and moral responsibility.†
attainment = the gaining or reaching of something with effort; or something gained with effort
DefinitionGenerally attain means:
to gain or reach something with effort
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 1
Web Links
candid
1 use
1  —1 use as in:
your candid opinion
And Lincoln, with his usual candor, confessed that he had no idea whether these were the same rails, but he was sure he had actually split rails every bit as good.†
candor = honesty and directness
DefinitionGenerally this sense of candid means:
honest and direct
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 1
Web Links
canvass
3 uses
...1840—re-elected; 1838 and 1840—chosen by his party as its candidate for Speaker of the Illinois House of Representatives, but not elected; 1840 and 1844—placed on Harrison and Clay electoral tickets "and spent much time and labor in both those canvasses"; 1846—elected to Congress; 1848—campaign workers for Zachary Taylor, speaking in Maryland and Massachusetts, and "canvassing quite fully his own district in Illinois, which was followed by a majority in the district of over 1500 for...†
canvasses = examines an issue, gets opinions by asking specific questions; and/or asks people for political support individually
DefinitionGenerally this sense of canvass means:
examine an issue, get opinions by asking specific questions; and/or ask people for political support individually
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 2
Web Links
consequence
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
a direct consequence of
Consequently I go for admitting all whites to the right of suffrage who pay taxes or bear arms (by no means excluding females).†
consequently = resultantly (as a result)
DefinitionGenerally this sense of consequence means:
a result of something (often an undesired side effect)
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library28 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
contemporary
2 uses
1  —2 uses as in:
they are contemporaries
Lincoln's democracy was not broad enough to transcend color lines, but on this score it had more latitude than the democracy professed by many of his neighbors and contemporaries.†
contemporaries = people who live or lived at the same time
DefinitionGenerally this sense of contemporary means:
living at the same time

or:

something occurring in the same period of time as something else
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
context
1 use
But its context is significant; the statement was neither a preface to an attack upon private property nor an argument for redistributing the world's goods—it'was part of a firm defense of the protective tariff!†
context = the setting or situation in which something occurs
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
democracy
8 uses
For Lincoln the vital test of a democracy was economic—its ability to provide opportunities for social ascent to those born in its lower ranks.†
democracy = a system of government in which citizens have power with equal votes
Word Statistics
Book8 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
disdain
2 uses
Lincoln's connection with such a tribe could only spur his loyalty to the democratic ways in which he had been brought up; he never did "belong," and Mary Todd's attitude toward him as a social creature was always disdainful.†
disdainful = full of disrespect
DefinitionGenerally disdain means:
a lack of respect — often suggesting distaste and an undeserved sense of superiority

or:

to reject as not good enough
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library7 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
disparage
1 use
This realistic bit of statecraft provides no reason for disparaging Lincoln, certainly not by those who hold thatit was his legal and moral duty to defend the integrity of the Union by the most effective means at his command.†
disparaging = criticizing or making seem less important
DefinitionGenerally disparage means:
to criticize or make seem less important — especially in a disrespectful or contemptuous manner
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library2 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 5
Web Links
doctrine
3 uses
The supporters of this doctrine vote for Buchanan.†
doctrine = a belief (or system of beliefs or principles) accepted as authoritative by some group
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library4 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 1000
1st useSubsection 4
Web Links
emancipated
16 uses
District slaveholders who wanted to emancipate their slaves were to be compensated from the federal Treasury.†
emancipate = to release from slavery or servitude; or (metaphorically) from social restraints
DefinitionGenerally emancipated means:
released from slavery or servitude; or (metaphorically) from social restraints
Word Statistics
Book16 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 6
Web Links
establish
3 uses
1  —3 uses as in:
establish a positive tone
There was another Lincoln who had a lawyer-like feeling for the niceties of established rules and a nationalist's reverence for constitutional sanction.†
established = firmly set in place
DefinitionGenerally this sense of establish means:
create, start, or set in [a] place
Word Statistics
Book3 uses
Library25 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useSubsection 3
Web Links
exemplar
1 use
Keenly aware of his role as the exemplar of the self-made man, he played the part with an intense and poignant consistency that give his performance the quality of a high art.
exemplar = an example — especially one that represents the ideal
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library0 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 1
Web Links
intransigent
1 use
Despite the gross note of calculation at the end (one rescues 432,000 human beings from slavery and it turns out to be a saving of expense), the proposal was a reasonable and statesmanlike one, and it is incredible that the intransigence of all but one of the states involved should have consigned it to defeat.
intransigence = stubbornness
DefinitionGenerally intransigent means:
stubborn — especially with regard to opinion or plans
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library0 uses in 10 avg bks
1st useSubsection 6
Web Links
lucrative
1 use
His ambitions were directed toward public life; he had no legal aspirations, lucrative though his practice was.†
lucrative = profitable
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 2
Web Links
malicious
4 uses
Here is a drama in which a great man shoulders the torment and moral burdens of a blimdering and sinful people, suffers for them, and redeems them with hallowed Christian virtues—"malice toward none and charity for all"—and is destroyed at the pitch of his success.†
malice = the desire to hurt others or see them suffer
DefinitionGenerally malicious means:
wanting to see others suffer; or threatening evil
Word Statistics
Book4 uses
Library8 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 1
Web Links
moreover
1 use
Most of the white people of the Northwest, moreover, were in fact not only not abolitionists, but actually—and here is the core of the matter—Negrophobes.†
moreover = in addition to what has just been said
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library6 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 4
Web Links
obsolete
1 use
Before Lincoln took office the issues upon which he was elected had become obsolete.†
obsolete = no longer in general use because it was replaced by something better
Word Statistics
Book1 use
Library1 use in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 500
1st useSubsection 5
Web Links
omit
2 uses
It expressly omitted the loyal slave states from its terms.†
omitted = to exclude or neglect something
Word Statistics
Book2 uses
Library3 uses in 10 avg bks
SAT®*top 100
1st useSubsection 4
Web Links
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