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Flashcards in S (I) Deck (43):

saboteur (n.)

one who commits sabotage; destroyer of property

Members of the Resistance acted as saboteurs, blowing up train lines to prevent supplies from reaching the Nazi army.


saccharine (adj.)

cloyingly sweet

She tried to ingratiate herself, speaking sweetly and smiling a saccharine smile.


sacrilegious (adj.)

desecrating; profane

His stealing of the altar cloth was a very sacrilegious act.


sacrosanct (adj.)

most sacred; inviolable

The brash insurance salesman invaded the sacrosanct privacy of the office of the president of the company.


sadistic (adj.)

inclined to cruelty

If we are to improve conditions in this prison, we must first get rid of the sadistic warden.


saga (n.)

Scandinavian myth; any legend

This is a saga of the sea and the men who risk their lives on it.


sagacious (adj.)

perceptive; shrewd; having insight

My father was a sagacious judge of character: he could spot a phony a mile away.


sage (n.)

person celebrated for wisdom

Hearing tales of a mysterious Master of All Knowledge who lived in the hills of Tibet, Sandy was possessed with a burning desire to consult the legendary sage.


salacious (adj.)

lascivious; lustful

Chaucer's monk is not pious but salacious, a teller of lewd tales and ribald jests.


salient (adj.)

protruding; strikingly conspicuous; jumping

Good readers quickly grasp the salient and significant points of a passage; indeed the ideas almost leap out at them, demanding their attention.


salubrious (adj.)

promoting good health; healthful

The health resort advertised the salubrious properties of the waters of its famous hot springs.


salutary (adj.)

tending to improve; beneficial; wholesome

The punishment had a salutary effect on the boy, as he became a model student.


salvage (v.)

to rescue from loss

All attempts yo salvage the wrecked ship failed.


salvo (n.)

discharge of firearms; military salute

The boom of the enemy's opening salvo made the petrified private jump.


sanctimonious (adj.)

falsely holy; feigning piety

Mark Twain mocked pious hypocrites, calling one a sanctimonious old iceberg who looked like he was waiting for a vacancy in the Trinity.


sanction (v.)

to approve; to ratify

Nothing will convince me to sanction the engagement of my daughter to such a worthless young man.


sanctuary (n.)

refuge; shelter; shrine; holy place

The tiny attic was Helen's sanctuary to which she fled when she had to get away from the rest of the family.


sanguine (adj.)

cheerful; hopeful

Let's not be too sanguine about the sanguine about the outcome of the election; we may still lose.


sap (v.)

to diminish; to undermine

The element kryptonite has an unhealthy effect on Superman: it saps his strength.


sarcasm (n.)

scornful remarks; stinging rebuke

Though Ralph pretended to ignore the mocking comments of his supposed friends, their sarcasm wounded him deeply.


sardonic (adj.)

cynically mocking; sarcastic

Dorothy Parker's wry couplet, "Men seldom make passes at girls who wears glasses," epitomizes her sardonic wit.


sartorial (adj.)

pertaining to tailors

GQ Magazine provides sartorial advice for the not-so-well -dressed man.


sate (v.)

to satisfy to the full; to cloy

Its hunger sated, the lion dozed.


satellite (n.)

small body revolving around a larger one

During the first dew years of the Space Age, hundreds of satellites were launched by Russia and the United States.


satiate (v.)

to satisfy fully

Having stuffed themselves until they were satiated, the guests were so full they were ready for a nap.


satire (n.)

form of literature in which irony, sarcasm, and ridicule are employed to attack vice and folly

Gulliver's Travels, which is regarded by many as a tale for children, is actually a bitter satire attacking man's folly.


satirical (adj.)


The humor of cartoonist Gary Trudeau often is satirical; through the comments of the Doonesbury characters, Trudeau ridicules political corruption and folly.


saturate (v.)

to soak thoroughly

Saturate your sponge with water until it can;t hold any more.


saturnine (adj.)


Do not be misled by his saturnine countenance; he is not as as gloomy as he looks.


saunter (v.)

to stroll slowly

As we sauntered through the park, we stopped frequently to admire the spring flowers.


savant (n.)

learned scholar

Despite all her academic honors, Dr. Diamond disliked being classed as a savant: considering herself a simple researcher, she refused to describe herself in such grandiose terms.


savor (v.)

to enjoy; to have a distinctive flavor, smell, or quality

Relishing his triumph, the actor especially savored the chagrin of the critics who has predicted his failure.


savory (adj.)

tasty; pleasing, attractive, or agreeable

Julia Child's recipes enable amateur chefs to create savory delicacies for their guests.


scad (n.)

a great quantity

Refusing Dave's offer to lend him a shirt, Phil replied, "No, thanks, I've got scads of clothes."


scale (v.)

to climb up; to ascend

In order to locate a book on the top shelf of the stacks, Lee had to scale an exceptionally rickety ladder.


scamp (n.)


Despite his mischievous behavior, Malcolm was such an engaging scamp that his mother almost lacked the heart to punish him.


scanty (adj.)

meager; insufficient

Thinking his helping of food was scanty, Oliver Twist asked for more.


scapegoat (n.)

someone who bears the blame for others

After the Challenger disaster, NASA searched for scapegoats on whom they could cast the blame.


scavenge (v.)

to hunt through discarded materials for usable items; to search, especially for food

If you need car parts that the dealers no longer stock, try scavenging for odd bits and pieces at the auto wreckers' yards.


scenario (n.)

plot outline; screenplay; opera libretto

Scaramouche startled the other actors in the commedia troupe when he suddenly departed from their customary scenario and began to improvise.


schematic (adj.)

relating to an outline or diagram; using a system a symbols

In working out the solution to his logic puzzle, you may find it helpful to construct a simple schematic diagram outlining the order of events.


schism (n.)

division; split

His reform led to a schism in the church and the establishment of a new set opposing the old order.


scintillate (v.)

to spark; to flash

I enjoy her dinner parties because f