Wednesday, November 4, 2009

1853 Most Difficult Words

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1583 Most Difficult Words

amphitheater (BRITISH = amphitheatre) = oval-shaped theater
anathema = curse, ban
annul = cancel, nullify
anodyne = pain soothing
anoint = consecrate, to apply oil, especially as a sacred rite
anonymity = state of being anonymous, having no name
antediluvian = ancient, obsolete, pre historic
antithesis = direct opposite
apathetic = unconcerned, indifferent
aphasia = inability to speak or use words
aphorism = maxim, old saying
aplomb = poise, confidence
apocryphal = a doubtful authenticity, not genuine, fictional
apostate = one who abandons one's faith
apotheosis = Deification, glorification
approbation = praise, official approval
archaic = Antiquated, from an earlier time
archipelago = group of islands
ardor (BRITISH = ardour) = great emotion or passion
arraign = indict, to call to court to answer a charge
arrogate = seize without right, to demand or claim arrogantly
ascendancy = powerful state
ascribe = to attribute
ashen = resembling ashes, or deathly pale
asinine = stupid
askance = to view with suspicion, scornfully
askew = crooked, tilted
aspersion = slander, false rumor, damaging report
assail = attack
assent = to express agreement
assiduous = hard-working, diligent, persistent
assuage = lessen (pain), to make less severe, ease
astringent = causing contraction, severe, harsh
asunder = apart, into different parts
atone = make amends for a wrong
august = noble, dignified, awe-inspiring, venerable
avow = declare
awry = crooked, askew, amiss
axiom = self-evident truth, premise, postulate
bacchanal = orgy, drunkenly festive
baleful = hostile, malignant, harmful with evil intentions
balk = hesitate, refuse, shirk, prevent
banal = trite, overly common
bane = poison, nuisance, something causing ruin
bastion = fort, fortification, stronghold
beguile = deceive, seduce, mislead
behemoth = monster, huge creature
beleaguer = besiege, to harass, plague
berate = to scold harshly
bestial = beast-like, brutal
bestow = to give as a gift, grant
bevy = group
bicker = quarrel, to have a petty argument
bilious = ill-tempered
bilk = swindle, cheat, defraud
blandish = to coax with flattering, grovel
blight = decay, afflict, destroy
blithe = Joyful, cheerful, or without appropriate thought
bombast = pompous speech
bourgeois = middle class
broach = bring up a topic of conversation
brusque = curt, rough and abrupt in manner
bulwark = fortification
burgeon = sprout or flourish
burly = husky, brawny
cabal = plot, a secret group seeking to overturn something
cadaver = corpse, dead body
cajole = encourage, coax, flatter
calumny = Slander, false and malicious accusation
canard = hoax, a lie
candor (BRITISH = candour) = frankness, honesty of expression
canvass = survey, examine thoroughly
capricious = fickle, impulsive, whimsical, without much thought
careen = swerve, to lean on one side
castigate = criticize, punish, chastise
cataclysm = catastrophe, disaster
cathartic = purgative, purifying, cleansing
catholic = universal, worldly
caucus = a small group within an organization or a meeting of such a group
cavil = quibble, raise trivial objections
cede = transfer ownership, to surrender possession of something
censorious = condemning speech, severely critical
chagrin = shame, embarrassment, humiliation
chalice = goblet, cup
chary = cautious, watchful, extremely shy
cherubic = sweet, innocent
chicanery = trickery, fraud, deception
chide = scold, express disapproval
chimerical = imaginary, impossible
choleric = easily angered, short-tempered
circumlocution = roundabout expression
circumspect = cautious, wary
circumvent = evade, avoid, to go around
citadel = fortress or stronghold
clamor (BRITISH = clamour) = noisy outcry
cleave = to split or separate, to stick, adhere
clemency = forgiveness, merciful leniency
cloister = refuge, to confine, seclude
coalesce = combine, to grow together
coddle = to pamper, baby, treat indulgently
cogent = well-put, convincing, logically forceful
cognate = from the same source, related
cognomen = family name, any name, nickname
colloquy = conference
collusion = conspiracy, collaboration, complicity
commodious = spacious
complicity = guilt by association, knowing partnership in wrong doing
compunction = remorse, regret
concur = To agree

conflagration = large fire, big, destructive fire
confluence = flowing together, meeting of two streams, meeting place
confound = bewilder, to baffle, perplex
congeal = solidify, as a liquid freezing, to become thick or solid
conjecture = hypothesis, speculation, prediction
conjure = summon, to evoke a spirit, cast a spell
consanguinity = related by blood, kinship
consecrate = make holy, dedicate to a goal, to declare sacred
construe = interpret or to explain
continence = self-control, self-restraint
contrite = apologetic, deeply sorrowful and repentant for a wrong
contusion = A bruise
conundrum = enigma, puzzle or problem with no solution, riddle
convivial = sociable, festive, fond of eating, drinking, and people
convoke = convene, summon, to call together
coquette = woman who flirts
corroborate = to confirm, verify
coterie = small group, group of people with a common interest or purpose
countenance = facial expression, to favor, support
cower = showing fear, to cringe in fear
crass = crude, unrefined
craven = cowardly
credence = Belief, acceptance of something as true or real
creed = Belief or principle
cringe = cower, to shrink in fear
culpable = blameworthy, guilty, responsible for wrong
cupidity = greed
curmudgeon = boor, cranky person
dally = procrastinate, to act playfully or waste time
debase = to degrade, or lower in quality or stature
debauch = to corrupt, seduce from virtue or duty
debutante = a girl debuting into society
decadence = deterioration, decay (e.g. moral or cultural)
decapitate = kill by beheading
deciduous = shedding leaves, short-lived, temporary
decorous = seemly, proper, tasteful, socially correct
decry = castigate, to belittle, openly condemn
deference = courteously yielding to another, respect, honor
defile = pollute, to make unclean or dishonor
deft = skillful, dexterous
defunct = extinct, no longer existing, dead
deleterious = harmful, destructive, detrimental
deluge = a flood, to submerge, overwhelm
demagogue = An unprincipled politician, leader
demean = to degrade, humiliate, humble
demur = take exception, to express doubts or objections
denigrate = defame, to slur or blacken someone's reputation
depravity = immorality, sinfulness
deprecate = belittle, disparage
deride = To ridicule, to mock, make fun of
desecrate = profane, to abuse something sacred
desiccate = dehydrate, to dry completely
despondent = depressed, feeling discouraged and dejected
desultory = without direction in life, at random, rambling, unmethodical
diatribe = long denunciation, bitter verbal attack
dichotomy = a division into two parts
didactic = instructional
dilettante = amateur, dabbler
disabuse = correct, to free from a misconception
disburse = pay out
disconsolate = inconsolable, unable to be consoled, extremely sad
discrete = separate, distinct
discursive = rambling, wandering from topic to topic
disdain = to regard with scorn and contempt
disingenuous = deceptive, sly and crafty
disjointed = disconnected, incoherent, being separated
disparage = belittle, speak disrespectfully about
disparate = various, dissimilar, different in kind
disparity = difference, contrast, dissimilarity
dispirit = discourage, to dishearten, make dejected
dissipate = scatter
distend = swell, inflate, bloat
distraught = distressed, very worried
docile = domesticated, trained, tame
dotage = senility, mental decline
dour = sullen and gloomy, stern and severe
droll = amusing in a wry
dulcet = melodious, pleasant sounding
duplicity = deceit, treachery, dishonesty, double-dealing
duress = coercion, imprisonment
ebb = recede, to fade away
ebullient = exuberant, full of enthusiasm and high spirits
eclectic = joyful
edify = instruct morally and spiritually
efface = To obliterate
effrontery = insolence
effulgent = brilliant
elicit = provoke
elucidate = make clear, clarify
emaciated = underfed, gaunt
embroil = involve, cause to fall into disorder
emend = correct
encomium = warm praise
encumber = burden, to hinder, restrict motion
endemic = Peculiar to some specified country or people
enervate = weaken, sap strength from
engender = generate, to produce
enigmatic = puzzling, inexplicable
enjoin = urge, order, command
ennui = boredom, lack of interest and energy
enthrall (BRITISH = enthral) = mesmerize, to captivate, enchant
entreat = plead, beg
epicure = gourmet, person with refined taste in food and wine
epigram = saying, short, witty saying or poem
epithet = name, appellation, phrase
equine = pertaining to horses
erode = wear away, to diminish
errant = wandering, mistaken
eschew = avoid, to abstain from
espouse = to support or advocate
estranged = alienated, separated
euthanasia = mercy-killing
evanescent = fleeting, very brief, short-lived
evince = attest, demonstrate, to show clearly
exacerbate = worsen
exasperate = irritate, vex
execrable = very bad, abominable, utterly detestable
exemplary = outstanding, serving as an example
exhort = strongly urge
exhume = uncover, to remove from a grave
exonerate = free from blame
exorcise = to expel evil spirits
expedient = advantageous, convenient, efficient
expiate = atone, make amends for
expunge = erase, eliminate completely
extenuate = To diminish the gravity or importance of
extol = praise highly
extraneous = not essential, unnecessary
extricate = Disentangle, free
exuberant = joyous, happy
exude = emit, ooze
exult = rejoice
facetious = joking, sarcastic, witty
facile = very easy
fallow = unproductive, unplowed
fastidious = meticulous, careful with details
fathom = understand, to measure the depth of
fatuous = inane, stupid
fealty = Loyalty
fecund = fertile, fruitful, productive
feign = pretend, give a false impression
fetid = foul-smelling, putrid, stinking
fickle = always changing one's mind
fidelity = Loyalty
filch = steal something of little value
filial = of a son or daughter
fitful = irregular
flagrant = outrageous, shameless
fledgling = just beginning, struggling
flippant = Having a light, pert, trifling disposition
florid = ruddy, with too much decoration
flout = to show disregard for the law or rules
foible = weakness, minor fault
foist = palm off a fake
foment = instigate
fortuitous = happening by luck, fortunate
foster = encourage
fracas = noisy fight
fraught = filled
frenetic = harried, neurotic
frond = bending tree
fulminate = denounce, menace
fulsome = excessive, insincere
furtive = stealthy
gainsay = to deny
gargantuan = large

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