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- adj.numb; unconscious:
- "Wayne was rendered insensible by a blow to the head."
- unfeeling; insensitive:
- "They were insensibile to the suffering of others.:
- adj.lacking zest or excitement; dull
- A cup of bland soup from a cafeteria is an example of insipid.
- The soup was rather insipid.
- adj.of or pertaining to an island, thus, excessively exclusive:
- "Newcomers found it difficult to make friends in the insular community."
- adj.stubborn; immovable; unwilling to change:
- "She was so intransigent we finally gave up trying to convince her."
- (n: intransigence)
- adj.prone to outbursts of temper, easily angered
- An example of irascible is a man who becomes extremely mad at even the slightest of mistakes.
- an irascible old football coach
- adj.using few words; terse:
- "a laconic reply."
- adj.present or potential but not evident or active (n: latency)
- An example of latent are fingerprints which cannot be seen.
- he has a latent talent for acting that he hasn't had a chance to express yet
- adj.praiseworthy; commendable (v. laud)
- An example of laudable is a person who donates to charity and wants to save the world.
- you showed laudable restraint in dealing with that ridiculously demanding customer
- n.giant whale, therefore, something very large
- An example of a leviathan is a large aircraft carrier.
- The factory is a towering leviathan in the middle of the town.
- An example of loquacious is someone who calls and talks for three minutes straight without pausing.
- the loquacious host of a radio talk show
- adj.clear; translucent:
- "He made a lucid argument to support his theory."
- adj.weighty, mournful, or gloomy, especially to an excessive degree:
- "Jake's lugubrious monologues depressed his friends."
- n.generosity and nobility. (adj: magnanimous)
- When you are very generous to everyone around and you give great gifts, this is an example of magnanimity.
- Because she was kind and generous, the magnanimous queen was loved by all.
- adj.malicious; evil; having or showing ill will:
- "Some early American colonists saw the wilderness as malevolent and sought to control it."
- n.one who hates people:
- "He was a true misanthrope and hated even himself."
- n.incorrect name or word for something
- An example of misnomer is someone telling a child that an elephant is a lion.
- “International Airport” is something of a misnomer, since almost all the arriving and departing flights are local.
- n.one who hates women
- A male chauvinist who thinks all women are stupid and manipulative is an example of a misogynist.
- v.to make less forceful; to become more moderate; to make less harsh or undesirable:
- "He was trying to mitigate the damage he had done."
- (n: mitigation)
- adj.wicked, evil:
- "a nefarious plot."
- adj.harmful, offensive, destructive:
- "The noisome odor of the dump carried for miles."
- adj.hardened against influence or feeling; intractable.
- An example of obdurate is a judge who sentences a man without feeling.
- He is known for his obdurate determination.
- v.to prevent by anticipatory measures; to make unnecessary:
- An example of to obviate is to eliminate the need for a surgery with a new treatment.
- The new medical treatment obviates the need for surgery.
- v.to close or shut off; to obstruct (n: occlusion)
- An example of occlude is hiding a gift for someone behind your back.
- An example of occlude is shutting a window to keep a bee outside.
- a blood clot had occluded a major artery in his body
- adj.not transparent or transluscent; dense; difficult to comprehend, as inopaque reasoning
- An example of opaque is the quality of a black sheet of paper.
- An example of opaque is the study of astrophysics.
- somehow listeners seem to connect with the songwriter, despite his deeply personal, often opaque lyrics
- adj.turned to bone; hardened like bone; Inflexible:
- "The ossified culture failed to adapt to new economic conditions and died out."
- n.a writing or speech in praise of a person or thing
- A speech praising a new political theory is an example of a panegyric.
- wrote a panegyric on the centennial of the Nobel laureate's birth
- n.a small sin or fault
- When you break a minor rule, this is an example of a peccadillo.
- adj.showing a narrow concern for rules or formal book learning; making an excessive display of one's own learning:
- "We quickly tired of his pedantic conversation." (n: pedant, pedantry).
- adj.deliberately treacherous; dishonest (n: perfidy)
- A person who lies all the time is an example of someone who would be described as perfidious.
- We were betrayed by a perfidious ally.
- adj.easily or frequently annoyed, especially over trivial matters; childishly irritable
- An example of petulant is a toddler throwing a temper tantrum when they don't get their way.
- Her tone was petulant and angry.
- n.tendency or action for the benefit of others, as in donating money or property to a charitible organization
- An example of philanthropy is giving money to charity and volunteering.
- The family's philanthropy made it possible to build the public library.
- adj.not easily excited; cool; sluggish
- An example of a phlegmatic person is someone who remains cool and collected during emergencies.
- a strangely phlegmatic response to what should have been happy news
- v.to calm or reduce anger by making concessions:
- "The professor tried to placate his students by postponing the exam."
- adj.related to being shaped or molded; capable of being molded. (n: plasticity n: plastic)
- An example of something plastic is Play-Doh modeling compound.
- there's usually a plastic cordiality at these corporate events
- n.excessively large quantity; overabundance:
- "We received a p lethora of applications for the position."
- adj.heavy; massive; awkward; dull:
- "A ponderous book is better than a sleeping pill."
- adj.concerned with facts; practical, as opposed to highly principled or traditional:
- "His pragmatic approach often offended idealists."
- (n: pragmatism)
- n.cliff with a vertical or nearly vertical face; a dangerous place from which one is likely to fall; metaphorically, a very risky circumstance
- An example of a precipice is the edge of a cliff.
- He stood on the edge of the precipice.
- v., n.to fall; to fall downward suddenly and dramatically; to bring about or hasten the occurrence of something:
- "Old World diseases precipitated a massive decline in the American Indian population."
- n.something (or someone) that precedes another:
- "The assasination of the Archduke was a precursor to the war."
- v.to stray away from or evade the truth:
- "When we asked him what his intentions were, he prevaricated."(n: prevarication; prevaricator)
- adj.rashly wasteful:
- "Americans' prodigal devotion to the automobile is unique."
- v.to conciliate; to appease:
- "They made sacrifices to propitiate angry gods."
- adj.beautiful (n: pulchritude)
- A person who is very beautiful would be described as pulchritudinous.
- adj.cowardly, timid, or irreselute; petty:
- "The pusillanimous leader soon lost the respect of his people."
- n.inactivity; stillness; dormancy (adj: quiescent)
- When a cell is in a term of no growth and no division.
- was struck by the elk's quiescence as it just stood there in the clearing
- v.to make or become thin; to purify or refine (n: rarefaction, adj: rarefied)
- An example of rarefy is add fresh air to a previously suffy room; to rarefy the air.
- An example of rarefy is to develop a sense of taste; to rarefy sense of taste.
- n.the act of censuring, scolding, or rebuking. (v. reprove).
- When you scold someone for bad behavior, your scolding words are an example of a reproof.
- The fear of reproof prevented them from complaining.
- v.to repeal or annul
- An example of rescind is someone calling off their wedding.
- The navy rescinded its ban on women sailors.
- adj.having a sharp or powerful intellect or discernment. (n: sagacity).
- An example of sagacious is someone checking the oil in their car before a long road trip.
- a sagacious critique of the current social climate in our nation