characterized by early mental development
At the age of six, the precocious child won first place in the national spelling bee.
an extended metaphor in which the characters and events stand for ideas about human life
The book, "Animal Farm," is an example of an allegory of the Russian Revolution.
a collection of literary works
All the innocence and daring of youth are elegantly captured in this heartfelt anthology of brilliant voices from 22 countries.
the sudden appearance of a silly idea or event in a book
Expecting the movie to be intellectually stimulating, we were disappointed by its bathos.
profane and abusive talk
When he is drunk or angry, his language always evolves into billingsgate.
a short description
There's an important nuance that's missed in this blurb.
to alter (a book, a play, a movie) by removing parts that could offend people
My editor bowdlerized my novel because he felt it was too explicit.
containing a dactyl (a meter of one long syllable followed by two short)
The meter used by Theocritus in the Bucolics and Mimes, as well as in the Epics, is the dactylic hexameter.
skipping from one subject to another
Students often write dull, secondhand, discursive prose.
a very large book
It is an episodic selection from a folio of letters rather than a completedramatic characterization.
to interrupt a speaker with aggressive comments or abuse
The speaker was booed and heckled when he tried to address the demonstrators.
a type of meter containing an iamb (two syllables: one short followed by one long)
For her drama students, iambic pentameter competes against the racket oftruck deliveries and the aroma of cookies baking.
confused or meaningless talk
The government's plan to perpetuate itself in office, via the traditional electoral rigmarole, is likely to go ahead.
a platform for public speaking
The flags of the delegations advanced and formed a semi-circle, in the center of which was a tiny rostrum in the arena.
the use of fallacious arguments, with the purpose of deceiving
Such sophistry does not warrant dismissal of the cause of action.
a conference or meeting to discuss a specific subject
In light of the recent financial problems, the administrators scheduled a symposium in which they would discuss the budget.
the language or tongue native to an area
He wrote in the vernacular to reach a larger audience.
humorous or witty conversation
What a delight it is to see well-educated people with opposing views but a sense of humor, engage in badinage.
loud and powerful (voice)
My boss introduced me to the staff with a stentorian announcement.
Whenever he won the match we were exposed to his gasconade.
to treat (cotton yarn) with alkali to increase strength
We'll need a little more alkali in the solution to properly mercerize this cotton.
exaggerated patriotism to any group, cause, or nation
Chauvinism is prevalent in business with only 3 female CEOs in the Forbes 500.
Although Rob didn't have any real friends, his chimerical ones were very loyal to him.
a large iron pot
causing sexual feelings
Erotic material is usually discouraged in the classroom.
causing people to feel or react strongly
Her performance had a galvanic effect on the audience.
to talk to someone in a bullying manner
An example of a hector is a teenager who always makes fun of and pushes others.
extreme patriotism, in the form of aggression
The dictator’s jingoism caused him to constantly rant about his nation’s superiority while threatening his rivals with war.
using few words (about a person, speech, or a piece of writing)
His laconic reply suggested a lack of interest in the topic.
broken stone used in evening roads and paths
the act of misusing words that sound similar
Many political cartoons have derided President Bush for some of his malapropisms or, as they have coined them, "Bushisms."
a strict disciplinarian, especially in the forces
While not slighting the captain's martinet personality, he gives aperformance that is filled with empathetic understanding.
the tendancy to derive pleasure from being humiliated
In an attempt to understand the captives cries of dismay, the masochist had himself beaten, and found it delightful.
a building or large structure normally housing tombs
The Dirkson family mausoleum dates back to 1878.
gratify or indulge (an immoral or distasteful desire, need, or habit)
Newspapers are pandering to people's baser instincts.
to flirt lightly
a bitter attack or denunciation, normally verbal
The head coach was briefly suspended after launching into a foul-mouthed philippic during a press conference.
marked by ruthless disregard for individual differences or special circumstances
The Greek mythical giant Procrustes stretched his captives to make them fit his beds and in doing so invented the first procrustean beds.
(of a victory) won at too great a cost
It was a pyrrhic victory for the teens because although they had won the right to go, there was no transportation available.
When he did get around to talking about his own ideas, they seemed quixotic.
boastful or inflated talk or behavior
Well, people who use big words like this are just being rodomontade!
one who derives pleasure from inflicting pain on others
His sadism led him to attack strangers on the street, just to witness their fear.
slow and gloomy
Her saturnine look in the movie mirrors that in several collections on the fallrunways.
the buying or selling of ecclesiastical privileges (of the Church)
a grammatical mistake in speech or writing
Frank's solecism caused his debate team much embarrassment.
a mistake in which the speaker switches the first sounds of more than one word
the spoonerism “tons of soil” for “sons of toil”
one who is devoted to pleasure
The hotel on the island was an exclusive resort that catered to wealthy sybarites.
showy but cheap and of poor quality
The green hat with purple feathers looked absolutely tawdry.
a British nobleman
a minor weakness in someone's character
Her decision seems to have been tolerated as a personal foible and a matterfor gossip.
a handicap or burden of some sort
Debt is a big incubus in developing countries.
one who deceives another for his/her money; a charlatan
Dirksen's oratory became, in the end, something of a mountebank performance.
to reduce (pain or fear) in severity
Treatment works by palliating symptoms.
a person or thing regarded as a perfect example
Tt would have taken a paragon of virtue not to feel viciously jealous.
risky, dangerous (situation)
to sparkle, to shine
That was a scintillating performance!
the quality of having strength and maliness in general
Aggression and virility were highly prized in soldiers.
in a very poor condition as a result of neglect
The cities were derelict and dying.
a precious stone consisting of quartz
equipment, apparatus, orfurnishing used in or necessary for a particular activity
Women have purses and other paraphernalia and do not want to put them on the floor.
one who believes that people are motivated by self-interest
Some cynics thought that the controversy was all a publicity stunt.
one who holds religious beliefs other than the main ones
Pagans worshiped the sun.
not friendly or forthcoming
They were courteous but faintly aloof.
behave uncontrollably and disruptively
The stone-throwing anarchists ran amok.
a scene of uproar and confusion
There was bedlam in the courtroom.
an important person (VIP)
My brother was a bigwig at Enron before he went to jail for tax evasion.
a cause of obsessive fear or loathing
He avers that this civil service pension list is simply a bugbear held up bythe opponents of reform.
special honor or respect shown publicly
They paid homage to the local boy who became president.
a modest or low view of one's own importance; humble
An act of heroism is appreciated even more when the hero responds to praise with humility.
public shame or disgrace
They provide a welcome balance to the ignominy heaped upon him in theprose tradition.
sentimental in a feeble way
It is cheap, gaudy, mawkish and artificial-offensive to intelligence and taste.
to cause resentment (of a comment)
The casual manner of his dismissal still rankles.
a feeling of intense joy or pleasure
Leonora listened with rapture.
a man devoted to a life of sensual pleasure
After acting the roue for many years I entered a period of my life where all encounters left me with an vague sense of boredom.
The supercilious bearing of the old nobility could not be borne by the newpeers.
inclined to greed
As the show goes on, she moves around a bit, performing a bump and grindand bending over lasciviously.
to make false and defmatory statements to damage someone's reputation
We are here to open the campaign, not with slander and calumny, but tounite and draw closely to the old party all its members.
evoking a keen sense of sadness or regret
In an especially poignant scene, he admits that he has never had a romanticrelationship.
reduce or extinguish a debt
Loan fees can be amortized over the life of the mortgage.
a royal or national treasury
It extends also to everything regarding the management of the exchequer,and the expenses of public administration.
a third party who is served notice by a court to surrender money in settlement of a debt or claim
This article will outline what the rules are for a garnishee in Edmonton, Alberta.
a small gift given a customer by a merchant at the time of a purchase
The hotel threw in some free shampoo as a lagniappe.
the practice among those with power or influence of favoring relatives or friends
She was accused of nepotism when she made her nephew an officer of the firm.
to steal the public's money
For a hundred years that has been an almost unbroken record of fraud and peculation.
The bank's money was defalcated at ten o'clock this morning.
food items that contain gelatin
herbal liquer drink
to drink plentiful amounts of alcohol and enjoy oneself with others; or, a party
They danced and caroused until the drink ran out.
a combination of texts in a certain order
Obtain data from outlying physicians when needed for data collation andsubmission.
warm and friendly
The atmosphere was cordial and relaxed.
a person who takes particular pleasure in fine food and drink
She sipped at the water as an epicure would savor a good wine.
to be airtight
So an expensive hermetically sealed coffin is required if embalming is rejected.
a sweet syrup contianing alcohol
the choicer part of a loin of beef
extravagant publicity or fuss
After all the ballyhoo, the film was a flop.
a coalition between political parties intended to promote a mutual interest
There is also the question of whether the cartel will stick to whateveragreement it reaches.
manipulate the boundaries of an electoral constituency so as to favor one party
The political process has been hijacked by a gerrymander.
attempting to influence decisions made by officials in the government
If a large lobby group pays you a lot of money to push a political agendaover here, you tend to get thrown in jail.
a political leader who seeks support by appealing to popular desires
He was drawn into a circle of campus demagogues.
government by the wealthy
repeal or do away with (a law, right, or formal agreement)
A proposal to abrogate temporarily the right to strike.
a traitor who collaborates with an enemy force occupying their country
He was a quisling who was executed for treason.
a procession or parade on horseback
stop (someone) from being angry or discontented
Concessions were made to conciliate the peasantry.
to bring under domination or control
The invaders had soon subjugated most of the native population.
to treat a person with a small amount of a virus to make him/her immune
He inoculated his tenants against smallpox.
inflammation of the throat
a bacterium of a genus that includes the agents of souring of milk and dental decay
study of people and their cultures
fear of open spaces
a disorder which involves both the head and the body
a husband's or wife's court-ordered provision for a spouse after divorce
He has failed to pay alimony for more than two years.
a large group of people or things of a particular kind
He was surrounded by a bevy of beautiful girls.
an intellectual or literary woman
a woman who flirts
persuade (someone) to do something by means of deception or flattery
We cannot inveigle him into putting pen to paper.
apparently attractive but having in reality no value or integrity
Meretricious souvenirs for the tourist trade.
marriage between spouses of different social ranks
a harsh-tempered or overbearing woman
the supposed practice of communicating with the dead
a place where words spoken cannot be understood
a bell tower or steeple housing bells, especially one that is part of a church
a feeling of guilt or moral scruple after doing something wrong
The spoilt boy spent the money without compunction.
crude and offensive in a sexual way
She began to gyrate to the music and sing a lewd song.
a very small or inadequate amount of money paid to someone as an allowance
They publish on demand, give the author a few free copies and a pittance for royalties.
a person who is or claims to be easily shocked by matters relating to nudity
While he understands the medical stuff he learned in school pretty well, he is stuffy and a bit of a prude.
a feeling of doubt or hesitation
I had no scruples about eavesdropping
a person who can endure pain without showing feelings
Even though the Titanic was sinking underneath them, and the passengers were frantic with fear, the band remained stoic until the end.
a loose white linen vestment worn at Christian services
a cause of great trouble or suffering
Homework is a tribulation we just have to get through so that one day, we won't have to do it any more.
a person who cultivates an area of interest, such as the arts, without real commitment or knowledge
We were friends, but never easy - I'd always had the feeling he thought me a lightweight or a dilettante.
carve, mold, or stamp a design on (a surface) so that it stands out in relief
the complete range or scope of something
The whole gamut of human emotion.
a song of triumph
At heart this romantic, melancholy tale is a paean to reading and to the life one person lives through books.
the part of a theater stage in front of the curtain
a piece of music sung or played in the open air
enjoy oneself unrestrainedly
a painting of lords and ladies disporting themselves by a lake
understand a problem after much thought
He could scarcely fathom the idea that people actually lived in Las Vegas.
something that is not in the right time period
The sword is an anachronism in modern warfare.
of or belonging to the time before the biblical Flood
More than valuables, they hoped to find photographs or other mementos of their antediluvian lives.
someone who can speak multiple languages
a state of temporary disuse or suspension
Matters were held in abeyance pending further inquiries.
an award or privilege granted as a special honor or as an acknowledgmen
the ultimate official accolade of a visit by the president
approach and address boldly
reporters accosted him in the street
the decisive or most important point at issue
The crux of the matter is that attitudes have changed
a thing used to keep something off
the most perfect or typical example of a quality or class
He was the quintessence of political professionalism.
refusing to obey or comply
The recalcitrant donkeys did not move for 5 days.
proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects
STDs can be insidious and sometimes without symptoms