- (adj.) difficult to please; dainty
- The fastidious girl would not accept any offers as suitable.
- The woman was extremely fastidious, as evident in her occasional fainting spells.
- (v.; n.) to understand; a nautical unit of depth
- It was difficult to fathom the reason for closing the institution.
- The submarine cruised at 17 fathoms below the surface.
- (adj.) lacking in seriousness; vain and silly
- The fatuous prank was meant to add comedy to the situation.
- His fatuous personality demands that he stop in front of every mirror.
- (n.) loyalty
- The baron was given land in exchange for his fealty to the king.
- (adj.) productive
- The construction crew had a fecund day and were able to leave early.
- (v.) to look around for
- I spent the morning ferreting for my keys
- I have a pet ferret.
- (adj.) having a smell of decay
- The fetid smell led us to believe something was decaying in the basement.
- (n.)anything to which one gives excessive devotion
- The clay figure of a fertility goddess was a fetish from an ancient civilization.
- (n.) a chain to bind the feet
- A fetter kept the dog chained to the fence.
- (n.) a cleft or crack
- The earthquake caused a fissure which split the cliff face.
- (v.) to become weak; to send a message
- The smaller animal flagged before the larger one.
- (adj.) talkative; disrespectful
- The youngsters were flippant in the restaurant.
- The teacher became upset with the flippant answer from the student.
- (v.) to mock or jeer
- Do not flout an opponent if you believe in fair play.
- (v.) to falsely identify as real
- The smuggler tried to foist the cut glass as a priceless gem.
- (v.) to raid for spoils, plunder
- The soldiers were told not to foray the town.
- (adj.) happening accidentally
- Finding the money under the bush was fortuitous.
- (adj.) rebellious; apt to quarrel
- Fractious siblings aggravate their parents.
- (v.) to blame, denunciate
- It is impolite to fulminate someone for your mistakes.
- Senator Shay fulminated against her opponent�s double-standard on campaign finance reform.
- (adj.) disgusting due to excess
- The man became obese when he indulged in fulsome eating.
- (adj.) secretive; sly
- The detective had much difficulty finding the furtive criminal.
- (n.) pompous talk or writing
- The fustian by the professor made him appear arrogant.
- (v.) to speak against; to contradict; to deny
- With Senator Bowker the only one to gainsay it, the bill passed overwhelmingly.
- (v.) to stimulate as if by electric shock; startle; excite
- The pep rally will galvanize the team.
- (n.) a complete range; any complete musical scale
- The woman�s wardrobe runs the gamut from jeans to suits.
- His first composition covered the entire gamut of the major scale.
- (adj.) mixed up; distorted or confused
- The interference on the phone line caused the data to become garbled on the computer screen.
- (adj.) gaudy, showy
- The gold fixtures seemed garish.
- (adj.) extremely talkative or wordy
- No one wanted to speak with the garrulous man for fear of being stuck in a long, one-sided conversation.
- (adj.) awkward; lacking social grace
- Unfortunately, the girl was too gauche to fit into high society.
- (n.) a protective glove
- The gauntlet saved the man�s hand from being burned in the fire.
- (adj.) contributing to life; amiable
- Key West�s genial climate is among its many attractive aspects.
- Her genial personality made her a favorite party guest.
- (v.) to rapidly speak unintelligibly
- They did not want him to represent their position in front of the committee since he was prone to gibbering when speaking in front of an audience.
- (adj.) smooth and slippery; speaking or spoken in a smooth manner
- The salesman was so glib that the customers failed to notice the defects in the stereo.
- (n.) one who eats eagerly
- A gourmand may eat several servings of an entree.
- (n.) boisterous laughter
- A comedian�s success is assured when the audience gives forth a guffaw following his jokes.
- (n.) slyness; deceit
- By using his guile, the gambler almost always won at the card table.
- (adj.) commonplace; trite
- Just when you thought neckties were becoming a hackneyed gift item, along comes the Grateful Dead collection.
- Have a nice day has become something of a hackneyed expression.
- (adj.) untamed; having a worn look
- The lawn in front of the abandoned house added to its haggard look.
- He looked as haggard as you would expect a new father of quadruplets to look.
- Just by looking at her haggard features, you can tell she has not slept for many hours.
- (adj.) tranquil; happy
- The old man fondly remembered his halcyon days growing up on the farm.
- (n; v.) a lengthy, heartfelt speech; to talk or write excitedly
- We sat patiently and listened to her harangue.
- When he finally stopped his haranguing, I responded calmly.
- (adj.) proud of oneself and scornful of others
- The haughty ways she displayed her work turned off her peers.
- The haughty girl displayed her work as if she were the most prized artist.
- (adj.) whitened by age
- The paint had a hoary appearance, as if it were applied decades ago.
- (n.) maintenance of stability
- Knowing the seriousness of the operation, the surgeons were concerned about restoring the patient to homeostasis.
- (n.) solemn moral talk; sermon
- The preacher gave a moving homily to the gathered crowd.
- (n.) arrogance
- Some think it was hubris that brought the president to the point of impeachment.
- (adj.) having the nature of fire; volcanic
- When the sun shone upon it, the material took on an igneous quality.
- (adj.) ordinary; dishonorable;
- The king was adamant about keeping his son from wedding an ignoble serf.
- Consciously lying to someone is ignoble.
- It was ignoble to disgrace the family in front of all of the townspeople.
- (adj.) contemptible; disgraced; degrading
- The behavior was so ignominious he was ashamed to be associated with it.
- She left him because of his ignominious treatment of her.
- (adj.) unreal; false; deceptive
- He was proven guilty when his alibi was found to be illusory.
- (v.) to soak or stain; permeate
- The wound will imbue the shirt in blood.
- The new day imbued him with a sense of optimism.
- (v.) pierce through with, or stick on; somthing pointed
- The knight was impaled by the sharp lance.
- (n.) a situation that has no solution or escape
- The workers and administration were at an impasse in their negotiations.
- (adj.) showing no emotion
- Even when his father died he gave an impassive response and walked out tearless.
- Her expected announcement was met by an impassive facial expression.
- (adj.) poor; having no money
- The Great Depression made family after family impecunious.
- (adj.) without regret, shame, or remorse
- It was obvious after his impenitent remark to the press that the defendant felt no
- remorse for his crime.
- (adj.) arrogant; urgent
- Her imperious manner cost her her two best friends.
- It was imperious that the message reach the police chief.
- (adj.) calm; not easily excited
- The imperturbable West Point graduate made a fine negotiator.
- (adj.) moving with great force; done with little thought
- The impetuous movement took the art community by storm.
- The impetuous teenager spent her money without considering what she needed the new purchase for.
- Dagmar came to regret his impetuous actions, once he realized what he�d done.
- (n.) irreverence toward God; lack of respect
- The bishop condemned the impiety of the celebrity�s assertions.
- Impiety is evident in the way many people commit rude actions.
- (adj.) unwilling to be pacified or appeased
- The baby was so implacable a warm bottle would not settle her.
- The two year old was an implacable child; he cried no matter what his parents did to comfort him.
- (adj.) unwise; imprudent
- If you are planning to invest your money, impolitic decisions may be costly.
- (v.) to pray for evil; to invoke a curse
- A witch may imprecate an enemy with a curse of bad luck.
- (adj.) not providing for the future
- An improvident person may end up destitute in latter life.
- (adj.) disrespectful and shameless
- Impudent actions caused him to be unpopular.
- (v.) to attack with words; to question the truthfulness or integrity
- The defense lawyer impugned the witness�s testimony, which set back the prosecution�s case.
- If I believe the man is a fraud I will impugn his comments.
- (n.) to charge, to attribute a fault or misconduct to another
- The imputation of guilt was made by the judge.
- (adj.) constant and unending
- The mother gave in to the child after her incessant crying.
- Incessant rain caused the river to flood over its banks.
- (adj.) not yet fully formed; rudimentary
- The inchoate building appeared as if it would be a fast-food restaurant.
- The outline of the thesis was the inchoate form of a very complex theory.
- (adj.) inconvenient
- The incommodious illness caused her to miss an important interview.
- (adj.) not consisting of matter
- The apparition appeared to be incorporeal.
- (adj.) skeptical
- The incredulous look on his face led me to believe he was not convinced of its importance.
- The reporter was incredulous on hearing the computer executive�s UFO account.
- (v.) to impress upon the mind, as by insistent urging
- I will inculcate the directions if people are unsure of them.
- (adj.) that which cannot be blotted out or erased
- The photograph of Neil Armstrong setting foot on the moon made an indelible impression on all who saw it.
- (v.) charge with a crime
- The grand jury indicted her and her husband for embezzlement and six other lesser counts.
- (n.) the condition of being poor
- The family�s indigence was evident by the run-down house they lived in.
- (adj.) expressing anger to an injustice
- He was indignant over the way he was treated.
- (adj.) lazy; inactive
- If we find him goofing off one more time, we won�t be able to escape the fact that he�s indolent.
- An indolent student slept all day.
- (adj.) not easily discouraged or defeated
- The underdog candidate had an indomitable spirit.
- (adj.) something inevitable
- They were prepared for the ineluctable disaster.
- (n.) an unworldly young woman
- As an ingenue, Corky had no experience outside of her small town.
- (adj.) noble; honorable; candid; also naive, simple, artless, without guile
- The ingenuous doctor had a great bedside manner, especially when it came to laying out the full implications of an illness.
- (v.) to bring into one�s good graces
- The man was hoping to ingratiate himself with his wife by buying a bouquet of flowers and candy.
- (n.) ungratefulness
- When she failed to send a thank-you card, her friend took it as a sign of ingratitude.
- (adj.) hostile, unfriendly
- The chess player directed an inimical stare at his opponent to knock him off his game.
- (adj.) wicked; unjust
- The verbal abuse towards the man was truly iniquitous.
- (v.; n.) begin; admit into a group; a person who is in the process of being admitted into a group He initiated the dinner discussion by asking his father to borrow the car.
- As an initiate to the Explorers, George was expected to have a taste for the outdoor life.
- (adj.) uninteresting, boring flat, dull
- Many people left the insipid movie before it was finished.
- Declaring the offerings insipid, the critic grudgingly awarded the restaurant one star.
- (adj.) having the characteristics of an island; narrow-minded, provincial
- After walking along the entire perimeter and seeing that the spit of land was actually insular, we realized it was time to build a boat.
- His insular approach to education makes him a pariah among liberals.
- (n.) having the characteristics of an island
- The insularity of the country made it a great place to build a resort.
- (adj.) stubborn, obstinate; not easily taught or disciplined
- Every teacher in the school became frustrated with the intractable student and sent him to the principal�s office.
- An intractable pet can be very frustrating.
- (adj.) uncompromising
- With intransigent values, no amount of arguing could change her mind.
- The baseball owners and players remained intransigent, so a deal was never struck.
- (adj.) fearless, bold
- The intrepid photographer flew on some of the fiercest bombing raids of the war.
- Her intrepid actions deserved a medal.
- (v.) to flood; to overwhelm with a large amount of
- The broken water main inundated the business district with water.
- Surfing the Internet can inundate you with information.
- That�s why a web browser comes in handy.
- (adj.) accustomed to pain
- Beekeepers eventually become inured to bee stings.
- (adj.) a practice settled on over a long period of time
- The inveterate induction ceremony bespoke one of the school�s great traditions.
- (n.) a very small piece
- There wasn�t one iota of evidence to suggest a conspiracy.
- (adj.) prone to anger
- The irascible teenager was known to cause fights when upset.
- Knowing that the king was irascible, the servants decided not to tell him about the broken crystal.
- (adj.) without blame or faults
- The honesty of the priest made him irreproachable.