Showing posts from May, 2011


ravenous [  RAV-uh’-nuh’ s  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. voracious, hungry, greedy or famished 2. predatory, avaricious or rapacious 3. eager or greedy for food, gratification or satisfaction   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   His ravenous need to be wealthy destroyed him.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   Nigella Lawson could go straight to the kitchen from scrubbing the toilet with her bare hands and I'd still fall on her food like a ravenous dog.


pogrom [  puh’-GRUHM, -GROM, poh-  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   an organized massacre of helpless people esp. those of jews   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The holocaust against Jews during world war II was the most ghastly pogrom ever witnessed by mankind.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   The first pogrom is often considered to be the 1821 anti-Jewish riots in Odessa (modern Ukraine) after the death of the Greek Orthodox patriarch in Istanbul, in which 14 Jews were killed.


lambast [  lam-BEYST, -BAST  ]   [  transitive verb  ]   MEANING :   to beat or denounce severely   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Instead of verbally lambasting politicians, the middle class in India would be better served if they were to be active participants in the democratic process and be vigilant citizens at all times.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   The prime minister, who lambasts his main rival as a “shallow salesman”, has been unable to sell himself.


habiliment  [  huh'-BIL-uh'-muh' nt  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   (usu. plural) of or pertaining to clothes; trappings   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The habiliments of a modern day cricketer are colourful and trendy.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   As Vivaldi expressed his incredulity, however, he returned to examine the garment once more, when, as he raised it, he observed, what had before escaped his notice, black drapery mingled with the heap beneath; and, on lifting this also on the point of his sword, he perceived part of the habiliment of a monk!


inculpate [  in-KUHL-peyt, IN-kuhl-peyt  ] [  verb  ] MEANING : to accuse; charge with fault; blame; incriminate USAGE EXAMPLE 1 : To wrongly inculpate a man for murder is a serious offence in itself. USAGE EXAMPLE 2 : It is intriguing to speculate who hates Patrick so much that they have amassed evidence which appears to inculpate him as a paedophile.


pithy  [  PITH-ee  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   terse; concise, forceful and full of meaning   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The editorial made a pithy observation about the lifestyles of the politicians and the causes they espouse.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   The answers to that string of questions can be summed up with one pithy little word: no.


lagniappe [  lan-YAP, LAN-yap  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   a small gift presented by a merchant to the customer   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The large purchase made by the couple compelled the store owner to present a lagniappe to them.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   Intelligence is an experiment in evolutionary terms, an ecologically surplus ability -- a lagniappe, extra goods.


indelible [  in-DEL-uh’-buh’ l  ] [  adjective  ] MEANING : 1. not possible to wash away or remove; permanent 2. making a mark which is very difficult to remove 3. unforgettable; memorable USAGE EXAMPLE 1 : The indelible ink used during voting is one of the effective ways of curbing voter fraud. USAGE EXAMPLE 2 : What happened at Aberfan on 21 October 1966 left an indelible mark on the valleys of south Wales.


laconic [  luh’-KON-ik  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   marked by using few words; concise and brief   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The municipal commissioner's laconic speech on the steps taken by the BMC to prevent waterlogging during the rainy season did not impress the media.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   The only written monuments of the Vikings themselves are runic inscriptions. In Sweden there are some 3,500 inscriptions, mostly written on stone. They are often brief and laconic, and not very informative.


quisling [  KWIZ-ling  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   a person who collaborates with the invading enemy and thus betrays his or her own country   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   Mir Zafar is the most infamous quisling in Indian history.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   The "coalition" forces are the foreigners, in fact, and the US-financed quisling local government fools no one, regardless of the planned "handover" of power.


obsequious [  uh’ b-SEE-kwee-uh’ s  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   marked by or displaying servility; fawning   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The obsequious comments on Sachin Tendulkar made by Indian journalists throughout his career reflect an unhealthy trend of jingoistic journalism.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   Serena is never happier than when projecting her role as a perceived style icon, so the obsequious comments from American journalists about her dress sense were only too gratefully received.


distrait [  di-STREY; Fr. dees-TR*E  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   distracted, inattentive esp. due to some anxiety or worry   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   His distrait nature was reflected in his poor performance at work.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   It is Wenger’s fault, in any case, that Ashley has become so terribly distrait and disillusioned with life.


lackey  [  LAK-ee  ]   [  noun  ]   MEANING :   1. a liveried male servant; a footman 2. a person who tries to please someone in order to gain a personal advantage ; a toady   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The press did not report on the minister's speech since they knew he was only a lackey of the Chief Minister.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   For example, he could channel more federal money into decentralised trusts and so bypass the state governors and their lackeys altogether.


lachrymose [  LAK-ruh’-mohs  ]   [  adjective  ]   MEANING :   1. crying or inclined to cry 2. causing or tending to cause tears   USAGE EXAMPLE 1 :   The Titanic's lachrymose finale made it popular among film goers.   USAGE EXAMPLE 2 :   Torricelli's lachrymose pronouncement Monday certainly transformed Republican joy to gloom.

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