N. a thing that completes another; things very much alike. Night and day are counterparts, complementing one another.
N. highly successful action; sudden attack. As the news of his coup spread throughout the Wall Street, his fellow brokers dropped by to congratulate him.
V. join; unite. The Flying Karamazovs couple expert juggling and amateur joking in their nightclub act.
N. messenger. The publisher sent a special courier to pick up the manuscript.
N. agreement. We must comply with the terms of the covenant.
ADJ. secret; hidden; implied. Investigations of the Central Interlligence Agency and other secret service networks reveal that such covert operations can get out of control.
ADJ. avaricious; eagerly desire of. The child was covetous by nature and wanted to take the toys belonging to his classmates. covet, V.
V. terrorize; intimidate. The little boy was so cowed by the hulking bully that he gave up his lunch money without a word of protest.
V. shrink quivering, as from fear. The frightened child cowered in the corner of the room.
ADJ. shy; modest; coquettish. Reluctant to commit herself so early in the game, Kay was coy in her answers to Ken's offer.
V. cheat; hoodwink; swindle. He was the kind of individual who would cozen his friends in a cheap card game but remain eminently ethical in all business dealings.
ADJ. sour; peevish. The crabbed old man was avoided by the children because he scolded them when they made noise.
N. slyness; trickiness. In many Native American legends, the coyote is the clever trickster, the embodiment of craftiness. crafty, ADJ.
ADJ. very unrefined; grossly insensible. The film critic deplored the crass commercialism of movie-makers who abandon artistic standards in order to make a quick buck.
ADJ. cowardly. Lillian's craven refusal to join the protest was criticized by her comrades, who had expected her to be brave enough to stand up for her beliefs.
N. belief. Do not place any credence in his promises.
N. believability. Because the candidate had made some pretty unbelievable promises, we began to question the credibility of everything he said.
N. creed. I believe we may best describe his credo by saying that it approximates the Golden Rule.
N. belief on slight evidence; gullibility; naivete. Con artists take advantage of the credulity of inexperienced investors to swindle them out of their savings. credulous, ADJ.
N. system of religious or ethical belief. Any loyal American's creed must emphasize love of democracy.
N. increase in the volume or intensity, as in a musical passage; climax. The music suddenly shifted its mood, dramatically switching from a muted, contemplative passage to a crescendo with blaring trumpets and clashing cymbals.
N. highest point of a hill; foamy top of a wave. Fleeing the tidal wave, the islanders scrambled to reach the crest of Mount Lucinda. With relief, they watched the crest of the wave break well below their vantage point.
ADJ. dejected; dispirited. We were surprised at his reaction to the failure of his project; instead of being crestfallen, his was busily engaged in planning new activities.
V. shrink back, as if in fear. The dog cringed, expecting a blow.
N. standard used in judging. What criterion did you use when you selected this essay as the prizewinner? criteria, pl.
V. cut off unwanted parts of a photograph; graze. With care, David cropped picture until its edges neatly framed the flock of sheep cropping the grass.
ADJ. eccentric; whimscal. Although he was reputed to be a crotchety old man, I found his ideas substantially sound and sensible.
N. crucial point. This is the crux of the entire problem: everything enters on its being resolved.
N. secret recess or vault, usually used for burial. Until recently, only bodies of rulers and leading statesmen were interred in this crypt.
ADJ. mysterious; hidden; secret. Thoroughly baffled by Holmes's cryptic remarks, Watson wondered whether Holmes was intentionally concealinghis thoughts about the crime.
N. small compartment partitioned off; small bedchamber. Hoping to personalize their workspace, the staff members decorated their tiny identical cubicles in markedly individual ways.
N. style of cooking. French cuisine is noted for its use od sauces and wines.
ADJ. relating to cooking. Many chefs attribute their culinary skill to the wise use of spices.
V. pick out; reject. Every month the farmer culls the nonlaying hens from his flock and sells them to the local butcher. also N.
V. attain the highest point; climax. George Bush's years of service to the Republican Party culminated in his being chosen as the Republican candidate for the presidency. His subsequent inauguration as President of the United States marked the culmination of his political career.
ADJ. deserving blame. Corrupt politicians who condone the activities of the gamblers are equally culpable.
ADJ. heavey; hard to manage. He was burdened down with cumbersome parcels.
ADJ. growing by addition. Vocabulary building is a cumulative process: as you go through your flash cards, you will add new words to your vocabulary, one by one.
N. greed. The defeated people could not satisfy the cupidity of the conquerors, who demanded excessive tribute.
N. superintendent; manager. The members of the board of trustees of the museum expected the new curator to plan events and exhibitions that would make the museum more popular.
N. churlish, miserly individual. Although he was regarded by many as a curmudgeon, a few of us were aware of the many kindness and acts of charity that he secretly performed.
ADJ. flowing, running. In normal writing we run our letters together in cursive form; in printing, we separate the letters.
ADJ. casual; hastily done. Because a cursory examination of the ruins indicates the possibility of arson, we believe the insurance agency should undertake a more extensive investigation of the fire's cause.
V. shorten; reduce. When Herb asked Diane for a date, she said she was really sorry she couldn't go out with him, but her dad had ordered her to curtail her social life.
ADJ. skeptical or distrustful of human motives. Cynical from birth, Sidney was suspicious whenever anyone gave him a gift 'with no strings attached.' cynic, N.
N. the object of general attention. As soon as the movie star entered the room, she became the cynosure of all eyes.
- V.work at in a non-serious fashion; splash around.
- The amateur painter dabbled at art, but seldom produced a
- finished piece. The children dabbled their hands in the bird
- bath, splashing one another gleefully.
N.raised platform for guests of honor. When he approached the dais,he was greeted by cheers from the people who had come to honor him.
- ADJ.damp. The walls of the dungeon were dank and
- ADJ.neat and trim. In "The Odd Couple" TV show,
- Tony Randall played Felix Unger, an excessively dapper
- soul who could not stand to have a hair out of place.
- ADJ.spotted. The sunlight filtering through the
- screens created a dappled effect on the wall.
- V.smear (as with paint). From the way he daubed his
- paint on the canvas, I could tell he knew nothing of oils. also N.
- V.intimidate; frighten. "Boast all you like of your
- prowess. Mere words cannot daunt me," the hero answered
- the villain.
- ADJ.bold. Despite the dangerous nature of the
- undertaking, the dauntless soldier volunteered for the
- V.loiter; waste time. We have to meet a deadline
- so don't dawdle; just get down to work.
N.standstill; stalemate. Because negotiations had reached a deadlock, some of the delegates had begun to mutter about breaking off the talks. also V.
- ADJ.wooden; impersonal. Wewanted to see how
- long he could maintain his deadpan expression.
- N.scarcity. The dearth of skilled labor compelled
- the employers to open trade schools.
N.sudden downfall; complete disaster. In the Air-plane movies, every flight turns into a debacle, with passengers and crew members collapsing, engines falling apart, and carry-on baggage popping out of the overhead bins.
- V.reduce in quality or value; lower in esteem;
- degrade. In The King and I, Anna refuses to kneel down
- and prostrate herself before the king, for she feels that to do
- so would debase her position, and she will not submit to
- such debasement.
- V.corrupt; seduce from virtue. Did Socrates'
- teachings lead the young men of Athens to be virtuous citi-
- zens, or did they debauch the young men, causing them to
- question the customs of their fathers? Clearly, Socrates'
- philosophical talks were nothing like the wild debauchery of
- the toga parties in Animal House.
- V.weaken; enfeeble. Michael's severe bout of
- the flu debilitated him so much that he was too tired to go to
- work for a week.
- ADJ.friendly; aiming to please. The debonair youth was liked by all who met him, because of his cheerful
- and obliging manner.
N.rubble. A full year after the earthquake in Mexico City, they were still carting away the debris.
- V.expose as false, exaggerated, worthless, etc; ridicule. Pointing out that he consistently had voted against strengthening anti-pollution legislation, reporters debunked
- the candidate's claim that he was a fervent environmentalist.
N.young woman making formal entrance into society. As a debutante, she was often mentioned in the society columns of the newspapers.
- N.decay. The moral decadence of the people
- was reflected in the lewd literature of the period.
- V.behead. They did not hang Lady Jane Grey;
- they decapitated her. "Off with her head!" cried the
- Duchess, eager to decapitate poor Alice.
- V.slow down. Seeing the emergency blinkers
- in the road ahead, he decelerated quickly.