To constrain is to hold back, restrain, or confine.
His belief in nonviolence constrained him from taking revenge on his attackers
He construed her throwing his clothes out the window as a signal that she wanted him to leave
existing during the same time
having a tendency to quarrel or dispute
George’s contentious personality made him unpopular with his classmates.
to contradict, oppose, violate
Edwidge contravened his landlady’s rule against overnight guests
to call together
Jason convened his entire extended family for a discussion
to support with evidence
Luke’s seemingly outrageous claim was corroborated by witnesses
to neutralize, make ineffective
The antidote counteracted the effect of the poison.
A coup is a pretty major achievement, whether it involves taking over a government by force, or landing a major business contract.
1. държавен преврат
2. сполучлив удар; точно/пряко поадение
If you covet something, you eagerly desire something that someone else has. If it's 95 degrees out and humid, you may find yourself coveting your neighbor's air conditioner.
to desire enviously
readiness to believe
His credulity made him an easy target for con men.
a steady increase in intensity or volume
The crescendo of the brass instruments gave the piece a patriotic feel.
brief to the point of being superficial
Late for the meeting, she cast a cursory glance at the agenda.
abruptly and rudely short
Her curt reply to my question made me realize that she was upset at me.
intimidating, causing one to lose courage
He kept delaying the daunting act of asking for a promotion
to lower the quality or esteem of something
degrade, devalue, demean, cheapen
socially proper, appropriate
The appreciative guest displayed decorous behavior toward his host.
to criticize openly
The kind video rental clerk decried the policy of charging customers late fees
to ruin or injure something’s appearance
The brothers used eggs and shaving cream to deface their neighbor’s mailbox
When you defile something, you make it dirty or make it lose its purity. Think of fresh new snow covered in cigarette butts. The butts defile the winter wonderland.
A demarcation is a line, boundary, or other conceptual separation between things. Geographically, a demarcation might be the border that separates two countries or the river that divides two regions.
to lower the status or stature of something
She refused to demean her secretary by making him order her lunch
quiet, modest, reserved
Though everyone else at the party was dancing and going crazy, she remained demure.
To denigrate is to say bad things — true or false — about a person or thing
The company decided that its advertisements would no longer denigrate the company’s competitors
(typically of an artist or work of art) imitative of the work of another person, and usually disapproved of for that reason.
She was bored by his music because she felt that it was derivative and that she had heard it before
dried up, dehydrated
The skin of the desiccated mummy looked like old paper.
If you feel alone, left out, and devastated, you feel desolate. A deserted, empty, depressing place can be desolate too.
The adjective disaffected describes someone who is dissatisfied or rebellious. Usually if you're disaffected, you're upset with people in authority.
deny any responsibility or support for
Not wanting others to criticize her, she disavowed any involvement in the company’s hiring scandal
rambling, lacking order
The professor’s discursive lectures seemed to be about every subject except the one initially described
Disgruntled sounds like what it is — dissatisfied, grunting and grumbling. You could become a disgruntled employee if your boss swipes all your best ideas without giving you credit (or a raise).
The trunk of some people's cars may contain items as disparate as old clothes, rotting food, and possibly a missing relative. Disparate things are very different from each other.
to scatter, cause to scatter
When the rain began to pour, the crowd at the baseball game quickly dispersed
Disrepute is when a person or a group has a really bad reputation. A mean prank played by just a few football players, for example, might bring the entire team into disrepute.
Dissipate means "disperse" or "fade away" — as a bad smell will dissipate (usually) if you wait long enough.
When you dissuade someone, you convince that person not to do something
When Caroline saw Peter's broken leg, she tried to dissuade him going on the ski trip.
to swell out
Years of drinking beer caused his stomach to distend
If you’re indecisive, you have a hard time making decisions.
be indecisive, hesitate, falter, waver, vacillate
Not wanting to offend either friend, he dithered about which of the two birthday parties he should attend.
godly, exceedingly wonderful
Divine basically means relating to, coming from, or like God or a god
tending to cause disagreement or hostility between people.
Her divisive tactics turned her two friends against each other
Dour describes something sullen, gloomy, or persistent. You might look dour on your way to picking up your last check from the job you just got fired from, and people should get out of your way.
Something effulgent radiates light. On a clear day the sun can be quite effulgent. You might need a pair of shades.
to evade, escape
Despite an intense search, the robber continues to elude the police
When you emend a piece of writing, you correct or revise it. If you are asked to emend a report, that just means you need to go through it and make revisions.
1. distinguished, prominent, famous
Mr. Phillips is such an eminent scholar that every professor on campus has come to hear him lecture
the audience’s demand for a repeat performance; also the artist’s performance in response to that demand
At the end of the concert, all the fans yelled, “Encore! Encore!” but the band did not come out to play again
To encumber is to weigh someone or something down with a physical or psychological burden. You may find yourself encumbered by a heavy backpack or with anxieties. Either way, it's a heavy load to bear!
a feeling of listlessness and dissatisfaction arising from a lack of occupation or excitement.
I feel such ennui that I don’t look forward to anything, not even my birthday party
when something is so fascinating that it holds all your attention, it is said to enthrall.
The sailor’s stories of fighting off sharks and finding ancient treasures enthralled his young son.
ask someone earnestly or anxiously to do something
implore, beg, plead with, pray
The noun epithet is a descriptive nickname, such as "Richard the Lionhearted," or "Tommy the Terrible." When it takes a turn for the worse, it can also be a word or phrase that offends.
If you're talking about a typical example of something, call it the epitome. The cartoon character Garfield is the epitome of the fat, lazy, food-obsessed cat.
Equal and uniform; also, serene.
Roving or wandering, as in search of adventure or opportunity for gallant deeds.
To espy something is to see it, or glimpse it. If you look through binoculars long enough, you might espy a colorful bird.
Something euphonious sounds beautiful and pleasant. "You have a euphonious voice!" is a great compliment for a singer
To make manifest or evident.
an urgent need or demand; a critical period or condition.
Going beyond usual and proper limits.
the exorbitant price of tickets
speak or write at length or in detail
express strong disapproval or disagreement.
Use the verb expropriate to describe the act of taking people's property, usually by a government. If you really like your neighbor's house, you may wish you could expropriate the property.
Still existing and known.
Without studied or special preparation.
make (guilt or an offense) seem less serious or more forgivable
To diminish the gravity or importance of.
root out and destroy completely.
obtain (something) by force, threats, or other unfair means
a deceptive or pretended blow, thrust, or other movement, especially in boxing or fencing.
Any sham, pretense, or deceptive movement.
A criminal or depraved person.
often used to describe heated emotions like anger, love, or desire; intensely enthusiastic or passionate
A personal weakness or failing.
To nurse to life or activity; to encourage.
When a teacher says, "Bear with me for a moment," while he writes on the board, he is asking for the class's forbearance. He wants them to wait patiently during the delay
patient self-control; restraint and tolerance
Forfeit means to lose or give up something, usually as a penalty.
To renounce upon oath.
Fleeting; lasts a very short time.
Watch a bomb fulminate or explode and hope you're under safe cover
To cause to explode
Compliments usually make you feel pretty good, but fulsome compliments, which are exaggerated and usually insincere, may have the opposite effect.
Gainsay, a verb, means "contradict" or "speak out against."
To make gestures or motions, as in speaking, or in place of speech.
A glimmer is a tiny glint of light or the sliver of an idea. Either way, it's a sign of a lot more going on behind the scenes.
Gossamer is something super fine and delicate — like a spider web or the material of a wedding veil.
A gourmand is someone obsessively and unhealthily devoted to eating good food and lots of it.
Speaking in or characterized by a pompous or bombastic style.
Grievous is used to describe horrible things like tragedies or crimes
(of a person or wrongful act, especially a crime) utterly odious or wicked.
very, very hairy
Disposed to treat strangers or guests with generous kindness
People who go to church but don't believe in god? People who are vegetarians on a moral basis but wear leather jackets? They are engaging in hypocrisy, or behavior that is different from what they say they believe.
Low in character or purpose.
an extremely confused, complicated, or embarrassing situation.
Someone who is imperious gives orders in a way that shows they feel superior or more important than other people