Showing posts from February, 2019


ablution [ uh'-BLOO-shuh'n ][ noun ]MEANING :a washing or cleansing of the body, especially for religious reasonsUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The Hindu religion lays great stress on performing ablutions.
USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :In the Sikh holy city of Amritsar, where thousands of devotees gathered to celebrate the birthday of one of the religion's most important gurus, there was not enough water available for the pre-prayer ablutions.


denigrate [ DEN-i-greyt ][ transitive verb ]MEANING :1. to malign or defame someone; to criticize in a derogatory way
2. to belittle; to disregard the importance or value of someone or something
3. blacken; to make blackUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :One should not denigrate the efforts of ordinary Indians and Pakistanis in bringing the two countries closer.


churlish [ CHUR-lish ][ adjective ]MEANING :mean and impoliteUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :It would be churlish not to applaud the visiting team's resounding victory.


Foible [ FOI-buh' l ][ noun ]MEANING :1. a slight flaw or weakness in character
2. the weaker portion of a blade of a sword, from its middle to its tip.USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :
Both characters have their foibles and strengths; both have suffered greatly; both deserve a second chance.


Condign [ kuh n-DAHYN ][ adjective ]MEANING :appropriate; well-deservedUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The death penalty would be the most condign punishment for somebody who commits a cold-blooded murder.


Exacerbate [ ig-ZAS-er-beyt, ek-SAS- ][ verb ]MEANING :aggravate; increase intensity, bitterness or violenceUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The apparently untreated road was progressively freezing-over, exacerbating the problem.


gumption [ GUHMP-shuh' n ][ noun ]MEANING :1. common sense; shrewdness
2. initiative or aggressivenessUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :With his gumption, he is sure to rise to the top echelons of his company.
USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :For all their bossiness and humourlessness, the rationalist Leftists, at least have some gumption.


Leer [ leer ][ noun ]MEANING :a sidelong look that indicates sly and malicious intentUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :He was given the pink slip for always leering at female members of the staff.


Germane [  jer-MEYN ][ adjective ]MEANING :relevant; pertinent; fittingUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The speech made by the politician was not germane to the problems being faced by the people in his constituency.


Cynosure [ SAHY-nuh-shoo' r, SIN-uh- ][ noun ]MEANING :1. a focal point of attraction and attention
2. something which serves to guide and directUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The postman, aware that he was the cynosure of all eyes, would strut to the centre of the village and call out names of those whose letters he had brought.


Exiguous [ ig-zig-yoo-uh' s, ik-sig- ][ adjective ]MEANING :scanty; meagre; inadequateUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :His exiguous income prevented him from marrying and starting a family.


Ennui [ ahn-WEE, AHN-wee; Fr. ahn*-NWEE ][ noun ]MEANING :dissatisfaction or weariness caused due to boredomUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :She had a lingering sense of ennui that wasn't helping her stay energized and positive about her job.


Demure [ di-MYOO' R ][ adjective ]MEANING :1. reserved or modest in manner or behaviour
2. coy; affected shyness or modestyUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :Her demure manner endeared her to her elders.


Coquette [ koh-KET ][ noun ]MEANING :a woman who is flirtatiousUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :Her reputation of being one of the biggest coquettes in town is undeniable.


Détente [ dey-TAHNT; Fr. dey-THAN*T ][ noun ]MEANING :the relaxing or easing of tension, between rivals, esp. nations, through negotiations or talks.USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :During the Cold War there were periods of détente when arms control played a part in helping to enhance confidence between the adversaries.


Gainsay [ GEYN-sey, geyn-SEY ][ verb ]MEANING :to deny or contradictUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :
It cannot be gainsaid that the digital revolution is here with us.


Coeval [ koh-EE-vuh' l ][ adjective ]MEANING :belonging to the same age or periodUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :The parallels between the two unconnected, coeval sites have fascinated the archaeologists.


Akimbo [ uh'-KIM-boh ][ adjective, adverb ]MEANING :1. (adv.) in a position in which the hands are on the hips and elbows extend outwards
2. (adj.) placed in a way such that the hands are on the hips and the elbows extend outwardUSAGE EXAMPLE 1 :She stood with arms akimbo, frowning at the small boy, intimidating him, much to the mother's annoyance.