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Flashcards in List 5 Deck (23):
1

astringent

ADJ. binding; causing contraction. The astrin- gent quality of the unsweetened lemon juice made swallow- ing difficult. also N.

2

astute

ADJ. wise; shrewd; keen. John Jacob Astor made astute investments in land, shrewdly purchasing valuable plots throughout New York City.

3

asunder

ADV. into parts; apart. A fierce quarrel split the partnership asunder: the two partners finally sundered their connections because their points of view were poles asunder.

4

atavism

N. reversion to an earlier type; throwback. In his love for gardening, Martin seemed an atavism to his Tuscan forebears, who lavished great care on their small plots of soil.

5

atone

V. make amends for; pay for. He knew no way in which he could atone for his brutal crime

6

atrophy

V. waste away. After three months in a cast, your calf muscles are bound to atrophy; you’ll need physical therapy to get back in shape. also N.

7

attenuate

V. make thin; weaken. By withdrawing their forces, the generals hoped to attenuate the enemy lines.

8

attrition

N. gradual decrease in numbers; reduction in the work force without firing employees; wearing away of opposition by means of harassment. In the 1960s urban churches suffered from attrition as members moved from the cities to the suburbs. Rather than fire staff members, church leaders followed a policy of attrition, allowing elderly workers to retire without replacing them.

9

audacious

ADJ. daring; bold. Audiences cheered as Luke Skywalker and Princess Leia made their audacious, death- defying leap to freedom, escaping Darth Vader’s troops. audacity, N.

10

augury

N. omen; prophecy. He interpreted the departure of the birds as an augury of evil. augur, V.

11

aureole

N. sun’s corona; halo. Many medieval paintings depict saintly characters with aureoles around their heads.

12

avarice

N. greediness for wealth. King Midas is a perfect example of avarice, for he was so greedy that he wished everything he touched would turn to gold.

13

aver

V. assert confidently; affirm. Despite overwhelming popular skepticism about his voyage, Columbus averred he would succeed in finding a direct sea route to the Far East.

14

aversion

N. firm dislike.

15

avocation

N. secondary or minor occupation. His hobby proved to be so fascinating and profitable that gradually he abandoned his regular occupation and concentrated on his avocation.

16

avuncular

ADJ. Iike an uncle. Avuncular pride did not pre- vent him from noticing his nephew’s shortcomings.

17

awry

ADV. crooked; wrong; amiss. Noticing that the groom’s tie was slightly awry, the bride reached over to set it straight. A careful organizer, she hated to have anything go awry with her plans.

18

bacchanalian

ADJ. drunken. Emperor Nero attended the bacchanalian orgy.

19

badinage

N. teasing conversation. Her friends at work greeted the news of her engagement with cheerful badi- nage.

20

baleful

ADJ. deadly; having a malign influence; ominous. The fortune teller made baleful predictions of terrible things to come.

21

balk

V. foil or thwart; stop short; refuse to go on. When the warden learned that several inmates were planning to escape, he took steps to balk their attempt. However, he balked at punishing them by shackling them to the walls of their cells.

22

banal

ADJ. hackneyed; commonplace; trite; lacking origi- nality. The hack writer’s worn-out clichés made his comic sketch seem banal. He even resorted to the banality of hav- ing someone slip on a banana peel!

23

bandy

V. discuss lightly or glibly; exchange (words) heat- edly. While the president was happy to bandy patriotic gen- eralizations with anyone who would listen to him, he refused to bandy words with unfriendly reporters at the press con- ference.