1. Proponent
    • DEFINITION: one who argues in support of something; an advocate for or champion of a cause
    • SENTENCE: Colleen became a huge proponent of fad diets when she lost weight using one, but has since realized that exercise is healthier and more important.
    • SYNONYMS: fan, supporter, advocate
    • ANTONYMS: enemy, foe, opponent
  2. Prodigy
    • DEFINITION: a person, especially a child or young person, with great talent or ability; a young genius
    • SENTENCE: Mozart was declared a prodigy when he wrote his first symphony at age four, and his father toured him around Europe to show off his young genius.
    • SYNONYMS: genius, mastermind, whiz
    • ANTONYMS: simpleton, idiot, moron
  3. Oracle
    • DEFINITION: a person (as a priestess of ancient Greece) through whom a deity is believed to speak
    • SENTENCE: The conflict in ancient Greek literature resulting from people consulting the oracle to try to learn about their futures speaks to the dangers of knowing too much and being too curious.
    • SYNONYMS: prophecy, fortune, vision
  4. misanthrope
    • DEFINITION: a person who dislikes or distrusts other people in general; someone who hates or distrusts humankind
    • SENTENCE: In A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens portrays Ebenezer Scrooge as a cold-hearted misanthrope who despises poor people and Christmas.
    • SYNONYMS: hater, cynic, skeptic
    • ANTONYMS: humanitarian, philanthropist, altruist
  5. innovator
    • DEFINITION: a person who does something in a new way or has new ideas about how something can be done; a person who introduces new things
    • SENTENCE: Michael Jackson was an extraordinarily talented entertainer and musical innovator who became a global superstar, setting the standard for how a song could be presented.
    • SYNONYMS: creator, founder, pioneer
    • ANTONYMS: follower, imitator, copycat
  6. sycophant
    • DEFINITION: a person who seeks favor by flattering people of influence; a toady; someone who behaves in an obsequious or servile manner
    • SENTENCE: Jimmy is a shameless sycophant, but he is so obvious in his obsessive praise that he will never get anywhere with powerful people
  7. stoic
    • DEFINITION: a person who is seemingly indifferent to or unaffected by joy, grief, pleasure, or pain; someone who is impassive and emotionless
    • SENTENCE: The guards at Buckingham Palace are famous for keeping their faces stoic, even in the face of hot summer weather and hordes of pesky tourists.
    • SYNONYMS: aloof, detached, imperturbable
    • ANTONYMS: emotional, responsive, concerned
  8. reprobate
    • DEFINITION: a depraved, morally unprincipled, or wicked person; someone who behaves in a morally wrong way
    • SENTENCE: The motivational speaker called his young self a reprobate because of his constant stealing, fighting, and trouble with authority.
    • SYNONYMS: corrupter, degenerate, villain
    • ANTONYMS: do-gooder
  9. renegade
    • DEFINITION: a disloyal person who deserts one party or cause in favor of another; a traitor or deserter
    • SENTENCE: Benedict Arnold was vilified as a renegade, and his name has become synonymous with "traitor."
    • SYNONYMS: traitor, turncoat, heretic
    • ANTONYMS: adherent, loyalist, patriot
  10. draconian
    • DEFINITION: characterized by very strict laws, rules, and punishments; rigorous or extremely cruel in nature
    • SENTENCE: We were all relieved when the year ended because we would never have to deal with Ms. Dylan and her draconian class rules ever again.
    • SYNONYMS: brutal, authoritarian, harsh
    • ANTONYMS: lenient, gentle, amenable
  11. laconic
    • DEFINITION: using or involving the use of a minimum of words; very brief and concise
    • SENTENCE: Some brilliant people are habitually laconic, preferring to listen to others than to talk themselves.
    • SYNONYMS: compact, curt, pithy, concise, terse
    • ANTONYMS: verbose, wordy, long-winded
  12. spartan
    • DEFINITION: marked by simplicity, frugality, or avoidance of luxury and comfort; like the Spartans of ancient Greece, sternly disciplined and rigorously simple
    • SENTENCE: Recruits at the Marine training center at Paris Island must live in spartan barracks with almost no possessions and pass a demanding twelve-week training schedule.
    • ANTONYMS: luxurious, opulent, extravagant
  13. halcyon
    • DEFINITION: idyllically calm and peaceful; untroubled and tranquil
    • SENTENCE: The time she spent in the countryside relaxing and enjoying the natural beauty gave Grace the most halcyon week of her life.
    • SYNONYMS: serene, balmy, pastoral
    • ANTONYMS: violent, anxious, turbulent
  14. sophistry
    • DEFINITION: a plausible but deliberately misleading or fallacious argument designed to deceive someone
    • SENTENCE: Maura's sophistry as a student frustrated her teachers, because though her logic seemed sound her conclusions were incorrect and she obviously talked just to frustrate them.
    • SYNONYMS: deception, trickery, subterfuge
    • ANTONYMS: honesty, truthfulness, forthrightness
  15. Chimerical
    • DEFINITION: existing only as a product of an unchecked imagination; wildly fantastical or highly unrealistic
    • SENTENCE: Fad diets, vitamin supplements, and exercise routines all offer claims that have often proved to be based on chimerical logic.
    • SYNONYMS: imaginary, fanciful, mythical
    • ANTONYMS: real, authentic, factual
  16. Ostracize
    • DEFINITION: to exclude, by general consent, from society, friendship, conversation, privileges, etc; to not allow someone in a group
    • SENTENCE: Maddy and Jack made sure to teach their kids to share, to be curious, and to be inclusive, not ostracize any of their peers.
    • SYNONYMS: banish, blacklist, boycott
    • ANTONYMS: embrace, welcome, include
  17. Impecunious
    • DEFINITION: having little or no money; penniless; not affluent
    • SENTENCE: America tells people who are born impecunious that if they world hard and dedicate themselves, they might one day become rich, which is not always true.
    • SYNONYMS: destitute, poor, impoverished
    • ANTONYMS: rich, wealthy, affluent
  18. Nefarious
    • DEFINITION: extremely wicked or villainous; infamous by way of being wicked or impious
    • SENTENCE: Carly was writing a novel in which scientists from an unnamed country plotted a nefarious end to the world in which everyone else would become mindless drones.
    • SYNONYMS: evil, foul, perverse
    • ANTONYMS: honorable, respectable, virtuous
  19. jovial
    • DEFINITION: markedly good-humored especially as shown by happiness, jollity, or conviviality; cheerful
    • SENTENCE: Ironically, Grant who works in a funeral home as a mortician is the probably most jovial and kind person I know.
    • SYNONYMS: happy, merry, mirthful,
    • ANTONYMS: moody, sad, unhappy
  20. dirge
    • DEFINITION: a song or hymn of dirge or lamentation, often used for a funeral; a slow mournful musical composition
    • SENTENCE: Abe thought that he would be able to get through the ceremony without crying, but when the dirge started, his tears also began to flow.
    • SYNONYMS: requiem, lament, elegy
    • ANTONYMS: ditty, hymn, lullaby
  21. maudlin
    • DEFINITION: showing or expressing too much emotion, especially in a foolish or annoying way; excessively sentimental
    • SENTENCE: Francesca got kicked off of DJ duty at the party because she played two songs in a row that were maudlin and slow.
    • SYNONYMS: overemotional, mushy, tear-jerking
    • ANTONYMS: calm, matter-of-fact, unemotional
  22. quixotic
    • DEFINITION: hopeful or romantic in an impractical way; foolishly impractical in the pursuit of ideals
    • SENTENCE: Eric wants to become a politician and change the world, but he is quixotic and probably will have a hard time finding success in the cutthroat political world.
    • SYNONYMS: chimerical, dreamy, unrealistic
    • ANTONYMS: realistic, pragmatic, practical
  23. pandemonium
    • DEFINITION: a place or scene of riotous uproar or chaos; unrestrained disorder or tumult
    • SENTENCE: Kerri Anne was in Madrid when Spain won the World Cup in 2010, and she said that despite the country's trying financial problems, the city was engulfed in joyful pandemonium for almost a week.
    • SYNONYMS: chaos, ruckus, hullabaloo
    • ANTONYMS: tranquility, calm, peace
  24. martinet
    • DEFINITION: a strict disciplinarian who demands total obedience; a person who demands absolute adherence to forms and rules
    • SENTENCE: Even for the Army, Drill Sergeant Mahmoud Boulos demanded so much of recruits and held them to such high standards of behavior that he was known by all as a martinet.
    • SYNONYMS: authoritarian, drillmaster, tyrant
  25. fiasco
    • DEFINITION: a complete failure; a debacle
    • SENTENCE: Many observers believe that the government's initial slow response to Hurricane Katrina transformed the natural disaster into a human-made fiasco.
    • SYNONYMS: catastrophe, disaster, failure
    • ANTONYMS: success, accomplishment, triumph
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