ADJ. obscure; profound; difficult to understand. She carries around abstruse works of philosophy, not because she understands them but because she wants her friends to think she does.
ADJ. plentiful; possessing riches or resources. At his immigration interview, Ivan listed his abundant reasons for coming to America: the hope of religious freedom, the prospect of employment, the promise of a more abundant life.
ADJ. coarsely insulting; physically harmful. An abusive parent damages a child both mentally and physically.
V. border upon; adjoin. Where our estates abut, we must build a fence.
ADJ. bottomless. His arrogance is exceeded only by his abysmal ignorance.
N. enormous chasm; vast bottomless pit. Darth Vader seized the evil emperor and hurled him down into the abyss,
ADJ. related to a school; not practical or directly useful. The dean's talk about reforming the college admissions system was only an academic discussion: we knew little, if anything, would change.
V. agree. If I accede to this demand for blackmail, I am afraid that I will be the victim of future demands.
V. move faster. In our science class, we learn how falling bodies accelerate.
V. emphasize; stress. If you accentuate the positive and eliminate the negative, you may wind up with an overoptimistic view of the world.
ADJ. easy to approach; obtainable. We asked our guide whether the ruins were accessible on foot.
N. additional object; useful but not essential thing. She bought an attractive handbag as an accessory for her dress. alsoADJ.
V. applaud; announce with great approval. The NBC sportscasters acclaimed every American victory in the Olympics and decried every American defeat. also N.
V. adjust to climate. One of the difficulties of our present air age is the need of travelers to acclimate themselves to their new and often strange environments.
N. sharp upslope of a hill. The car would not go up the acclivity in high gear.
N. award of merit. In Hollywood, an "Oscar" is the highest accolade.
V. oblige or help someone; adjust or bring into harmony; adapt. Mitch always did everything possible to accommodate his elderly relatives, from driving them to medical appointments to helping them with paperwork. (secondary meaning)
N. partner in crime. Because he had provided the criminal with the lethal weapon, he was arrested as an accomplice in the murder.
N. agreement. She was in complete accord with the verdict.
V. approach and speak first to a person. When the two young men accosted me, I was frightened because I thought they were going to attack me.
V. equip. The fisherman was accoutred with the best that the sporting goods store could supply. accoutrements, N.
N. growth; increase. The accretion of wealth marked the family's rise in power.
V. come about by addition. You must pay the interest that has accrued on your debt as well as the principal sum. accrual, N.
N. bitterness of speech and temper. The meeting of the United Nations General Assembly was marked with such acerbity that informed sources held out little hope of reaching any useful settlement of the problem. acerbic,ADJ.
ADJ. vinegary. The salad had an exceedingly acetic flavor.
ADJ. slightly sour; sharp, caustic. James was unpopular because of his sarcastic and acidulous remarks.
V. recognize; admit. Although I acknowledge that the Beatles' tunes sound pretty dated today, I still prefer them to the "gangsta rap" songs my brothers play.
N. top; pinnacle. His success in this role marked the acme of his career as an actor.
N. science of sound; quality that makes a room easy or hard to hear in. Carnegie Hall is liked by music lovers because of its fine acoustics.
V. assent; agree without protesting. Although she appeared to acquiesce to her employer's suggestions, I could tell she had reservations about the changes he wanted made. acquiescence, N.; acquiescent,ADJ.