Infinite: never-ending; going on forever

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Vocabulary List #11

infinite: never-ending; going on forever

• Her mother seemed to have an infinite number of questions about Jenny’s

date with Silas.

• The teacher had infinite patience and never lost her temper, no matter how

far her students pushed her.

abduct: to kidnap

• Mrs. Jenkin’s biggest fear was that her daughter would be abducted, so she

watched her closely whenever they went to the park.

• Kent’s parents didn’t believe his story about being abducted by aliens and

taken away in their spaceship for three hours.

textiles: woven materials; cloth

• The interior designer had a collection of textiles for her customers to

browse through.

• Clothing manufacturers make many purchases from textile factories.

loathe: to hate

• George loathed cooked carrots and groaned every time his dad made them

for dinner.

• “I loathe cleaning the toilet,”said Mike.“I’d rather vacuum the whole house

every day for a week.”

unscrupulous: dishonest; immoral

• The unscrupulous coach encouraged his team to cheat whenever they

could.

• The businessman was so unscrupulousthat he cheated people who lived in


nursing homes.

controversial: debatable; likely to cause disagreement

• The decision to eliminate school uniforms at St. Mary’s School was quite

controversial.

• Many of Madonna’s music videos are controversial.

turbulent: wild; unstable

• Everyone wishes Molly and Zeke would break up.They have such a

turbulent relationship.

• The injured seal was having trouble staying afloat in the turbulent waters.

nocturnal: active at night

• Many owls are nocturnal.That’s why they see so well in the dark.

• “My cat is nocturnal and loves to go out at 2:00 AM,”said Marta.

tout: to praise highly

• James Brown has been touted as the “Godfather of Soul.”

• Mr. Octave had been touted as one of the best drama directors in the state,

so the school was delighted to hire him.

smug: self-satisfied to an annoying degree

• Marcos was smug about the Ahe got on his grammar test. He bragged

about it to anyone who would listen.

• Charla was smug about knowing the answer when no one else did.

Bonus Words

#façade: the face or front part of something, especially an artificial or false front

• Jessica’s bravery was just a façade. Deep down, she was terrified.

• The building had a brick façade, but it was really constructed of wood.

#vehement: forceful; full of intense feeling

• Ella took a vehement dislike to tomatoes after she ate too many of them and

got sick.

Vocabulary List #12

aghast: feeling great horror or dismay

• Tiffany was aghast to discover she had toilet paper stuck to her shoe while

she was being crowned homecoming queen.

• Kate was aghast to learn she hadn’t made the volleyball team.

redundant: needlessly repetitive

• “Saying two twinsis redundant,”said the English teacher.

• “It is important,”said Lou’s father.“It’s vital. It’s crucial. It’s . . .”He stopped

and sighed.“I guess I’m being redundant.”

gullible: easily fooled or taken in

• Roseanne was so gullible she always believed the outlandish stories Mau-

rice told her.

• Sven lost $500 in a telephone scam because he is so gullible.

eccentric: out-of-the-ordinary; odd; unconventional

• The eccentric woman kept a slice of pepperoni pizza under her mattress in

case she got hungry during the night.

• The play is funny because it has so many eccentric characters.You never

know what they’re going to do next.

inanimate: not living

• Shelley didn’t think of her stuffed animals as inanimate objects.They seemed

so alive and real to her.

• A computer is an inanimate object,but a hamster is not.

jeer: to make fun of in a rude,sarcastic manner

• When the football team fell behind by another seven points,the fans jeered

instead of cheered.

• The crowd jeered Elaine when her comedy routine flopped.

paradox: a statement that seems inconsistent or contradictory but may be true

• “You say you love him yet hate him,”said LuAnn.“That seems like a paradox

to me.”


• “That funny clown is sad,”said Craig.“That seems like a paradox, but I

believe it’s true.

ravenous: extremely hungry

• A full day of skiing left Luisa ravenous. She ate three plates of spaghetti

when she got back to the lodge.

• No matter how much he eats for breakfast, Paul is always ravenous by sec-

ond period.

valiant: brave; courageous

• Even though Wendy didn’t win the race, her coach praised her valiant

effort.


• He was a valiant knight who saved damsels in distress.

flourish: to prosper or thrive

• Abe’s house plants flourished because he took such good care of them.

• Business at the coffee house flourished when the owner hired a popular

young band.

Bonus Words

#mesmerize: to hypnotize

• Paige sat staring at the TV screen, mesmerizedby Johnny Depp.

• Blaine’s blue eyes can mesmerizeeven the crankiest customer at Hooligan’s

Market.


#destitute: living in poverty

• The family was destitute and had to live in their car.

• Mr. Bandower knew that if he quit his job, his family would be destitute.

Vocabulary List #13

synopsis:a summary

• Paula studied for her biology test by reading the chapter synopsis. She

should have read the chapter instead.

• Ms. Moser was having trouble understanding the plot of the Italian opera,

so she read the synopsis printed in the program.

idolize: to greatly admire

• Joe idolized Michael Jordan and wanted to grow up to be just like him.

• Tiffany idolized her older sister and followed her around everywhere she

went.

inadvertent: unintentional


• With aninadvertent key stroke, Henrydeleted his whole term paper from

the computer.

• Tasha inadvertently put too much butter in her cookies, so they were really

greasy.


verify: to prove to be true

• Sometimes, when you order a pizza for delivery, the pizza place will call you

back to verify that the order is not a prank.

• Shauna said the bank robber had been wearing a red ski mask, and the

other witnesses verified her statement.

convene: to meet or assemble

• The meeting of Snowboarders for Peace will convene at 7:00 PMin the

gym.


• The school board convened at 6:00 PMand adjourned two hours later.

excerpt: a passage selected from a book,speech,play,film,etc.

• “Mr.Bucco read an excerpt from Huckleberry Finnthat was so interesting it

made us want to read the rest of the book,”said Clarence,looking surprised.

• The speaker read an excerpt from one of the speeches of Martin Luther King,

Jr.,and it brought tears to the eyes ofthe audience.

lucrative: bringing in a lot of money

• Having two paper routes is more lucrative than having just one.

• The class fund-raiser was so lucrative that the students got to go on a much

more expensive class trip than they had expected.

orb: a sphere or circle

• The sun was a glowing orange orbrising in the east.

• Eyeballs are orbs. So are cantaloupes.

lament: to mourn or grieve

• For months after his family moved to another city, Cory lamented the loss

of all his friends.

• Long after the funeral, Fawn lamented the death of her favorite aunt.

candor: honesty and straightforwardness

• Nina made no excuses to Ross. She told him with candor that she simply

did not want to go to the prom with him.

• Jane displayed unfortunate candor when she told the principal he had bad

breath.

Bonus Words

#faux: false; artificial

• My mom refers to her wig as “fauxhair.”

• Faux pearls cost less than real ones.

#precocious: smart for his or her age; showing skills or abilities at an earlier age

than normal

• Jamal could read when he was only two and a half. He has always been

precocious.

• Six-year-old Ursula is precocious. She already understands calculus.

Vocabulary List #14

seethe: to boil; to be violently agitated or disturbed

• Maggie thought her parents would seethe over hercheating. But it was

worse than that; they sat quietly and looked very, very disappointed.

• Tony was seething inside, but he wasn’t about to let Hank know it. He

smiled calmly and walked on by.

incompatible: not going together well

• Bonnie and Jeff are incompatible on road trips. She likes to stop and look

at every attraction, and he hates to get off the highway for any reason at all.

• Alice’s boss asked her to transfer to another department because the two of

them were so incompatible.

paunch: a potbelly

• Ever since he stopped doing his sit-ups, Mr. Romero had been getting a bit

of a paunch.

• Walt didn’t care if he developed a paunch. He would never give up his

favorite snack of Mountain Dew and Oreos.

proprietor: the owner of a business

• Celestina Monarco became the sole proprietor of Monarco’s Grocery Store

after her husband died.

• If Tom decided to buy the store, he would then become the proprietor.

vermin: any of various small, harmful or disgusting animals or insects

• The run-down building was full of vermin and quite unsuitable for people

to live in.

• If you want to keep your sugar and flour free of vermin, store them in the

refrigerator.

smitten: struck with a powerful feeling; inspired with love

• Tony was smitten with the new girl in his chemistry class. Because he was

concentrating on her and not on his Bunsen burner, he knocked it over and

burned a hole in the counter.

• Yvonne went to the pool every single day all summer long because she was

smitten with the lifeguard.

fickle: very changeable in affection, loyalty, etc.

• The fickle princess was always changing her mind about which prince she

wanted to marry.

• The fickle fan always cheered for whichever team was winning.

gaunt: thin and bony

• The artist was gaunt. He had been working so hard on his project that he

usually forgot to take time to eat.

• Other than looking gaunt,the hostage appeared unharmed after being locked

up for five days with no food.

meddle: to interfere in someone else’s business

• Since Mrs. Busby lives alone, meddling in her neighbors’ lives makes her

own life seem more interesting.

• Mrs.Vance is always snooping around her daughter’s room and meddling in

her personal affairs.

kleptomaniac: someone who is addicted to stealing

• After Kirsten was picked up a fifth time for shoplifting, her parents won-

dered if maybe she was a kleptomaniac.

• When Lila’s grandma moved in with her, she had to keep a constant eye on

all her things. Her grandma was known for being a kleptomaniac who stole

salt shakers, pillow cases – anything.

Bonus Words

#astute: clever; intelligent; cunning

• Eleanor was astute about investing her money, and she soon became a mil-

lionaire.

• “These footprints are muddy.The thief must have come in after it started rain-

ing,”said the detective,making an observation that wasn’t particularly astute.

#filibuster: the making of long speeches to prevent a vote on a bill

• The senators kept the filibuster goingfor six days. It’s a wonder any of

them had a voice left afterwards.

• The 16-hour filibuster was successful. It prevented a vote on the bill.

Vocabulary List #15

veto: to reject

• Theodore had planned on taking his mom’s brand new car on his Friday

night date, but she vetoed that idea.

• The principal informed the student council that she has the power to veto

any of its decisions if she disagrees with them.

prominent: outstanding; distinguished; readily noticeable

• Brenna’s aunt was such a prominent lawyer that she didn’t even need to

advertise.

• Jay Leno has a prominent chin.

ethical: moral or right

• “Stealing money from your sister to buy a pack of gum is not ethical,”said

Mrs. Howard.

• Clarisse joined the demonstrators outside the company’s walls.“The cruel

and painful experiments some companies perform on animals are not ethi-

cal,”she said.

cliché: a stale, overused expression

• “Quiet as a mouse”is a cliché. So is “You can’t have your cake and eat it,

too.”

• Since Harold uses a lot of clichés, it is easy to finish his sentences for him.


introvert: a person whose thoughts and interests are directed mostly inward.

• Even though April seemed to be anintrovert, the drama teacher thought

she would be great as the lead in the school play.

• An introvert is more likely to prefer writing in a diary to talking on the

phone with friends.

extrovert: an outgoing person

• An extrovert is more likely to prefer going to a party to writing in his diary.

• Although she liked the extrovertsin her class very much, the teacher often

had to scold them for talking during class.

comprehend: to understand

• “I’ll never comprehend this algebra lesson,”muttered Evelyn,“even if I

study it for 20 years!”

• To help his students comprehend the workings of a hot air balloon, the

professor brought in a diagram.

profound: deep; intense; intelligent

• The editor was hoping to someday receive a book manuscript full of

profound insight into human nature, but all she ever got was silly fluff.

• Evan expected a profound answer when he asked the artist the meaning of

her painting, but all she said was,“It’s just a painting.”

transition: a change

• Nina’s mother says lip gloss is the perfect transition between wearing no

make-up at all and wearing lipstick.

• The transition between grade school and junior high is difficult for many

students.

simultaneously: happening at the same time

• Brian simultaneously talked on the phone and played solitaire on the com-

puter.

• Jonathon was a deep sleeper, so he set six alarm clocks to go off


simultaneously the morning of his first day of school.

Bonus Words

#gobbledygook: words that are confusing and needlessly official-sounding

• The contract was just a bunch of gobbledygook to Tim, so he decided to

have his lawyer clarify it for him before he signed.

• Since the politician didn’t really know the answer to the reporter’s question,

he just spoke a lot of gobbledygook to try to cover up his ignorance.

#carcinogenic: cancer-causing

• Although cigarettes are carcinogenic, many people unwisely smoke them

anyway.


• If you’re worried about getting cancer, use sunscreen when you’re outside.

The sun’s UV rays are carcinogenic.


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