Direct Hits: Volume II 2011 Flashcards

Figure of speech
Terms Definitions
synopsis
a brief summary of the major points of a thesis, theory, story or literary work; an abstract; a precis
simile
a figure of speech often introduced by 'life' or 'as' which compares two unlike things
metaphor
a figure of speech in which a comparison made between two unrelated objects
personification
a figure of speech in which an inanimate object is given human qualities or abilities
irony
a form of speech in which what we say or write conveys the opposite of its literal meaning
satire, lampoon parody
a work that ridicules human vices and follies; comic criticism; lampoon and parody are often used as verbs meaning to ridicule
hyperbole
a figure of speech in which exaggeration is used for emphasis or effect; extreme exaggeration
caricature
a representation in which the subject's distinctive features or peculiarities are deliberately exaggerated for comic effect
epic, saga
a long narrative poem written in a grand style to celebrate the feats of a legendary hero AND! a long narrative story; a heroic tale
euphony, cacophony
soothing or pleasant sounds; harmonious OPPOSED TO! harsh clashing sounds; jarring
foreshadow
to suggest or indicate that something will happen in a story; presage
subplot
a secondary plot in fiction or drama
anecdote
a short account of an interesting or humorous incident
eulogy
a laudatory speech or written tribute especially one praising someone who has died
allusion
a reference to something literary, mythological, or historical that the author assumes the reader will recognize
catalyst
any agent that provokes or triggers change
caustic
a caustic comment is one that hurts or burns
crystallize
to give a definite form to any idea or plan
osmosis
gradual often unconscious process of assimilation
sedentary
settled and therefor accustomed to sitting or doing the little exercise
virulent
language that is bitterly hostile
empirical
to be guided by practical experience, not theory
entomology
the scientific study of inserts
gestate
to conceive and develop in the mind
paradigm
is a framework or model of thought
entrepreneur
a person who organizes and manages a business or enterprise
lucrative
very profitable
extravagant
excessive and therefore lacking restraint
avarice
excessive desire for material wealth; greedy; covetous
glut, plethora, surfeit
surplus
destitute, impoverished, indigent; affluent, opulent
very poor OPPOSED TO! very wealthy
munificent
very generous
parsimonious
excessively cheap with money; stingy
depreciation
any decrease or loss in value caused by age, wear, or market conditions
remunerate
to compensate; to make payment for; to pay a person
accord
a formal agreement
enlighten
to inform, instruct, illuminate, and thus remove darkness and ignorance
appeasement
the policy of granting concessions to maintain peace
nullify
to make null, invalid
triumvirate
a group or association of three leaders
pretext
an excuse, an alleged cause
watershed
critical point that marks a change of course, a turning point
consensus
a general agreement
autocrat; despot
a ruler having unlimited power
manifesto
a public declaration of beliefs, policies or intentions
enfranchise; disenfranchise
to receive the right to vote OPPOSED TO! to lose the right to vote
coerce
to force to act or think in certain way by use of pressure, threats, or torture; to compel
egalitarian
favoring social equality; belief in a society in which all people have equal political, economic, and civil rights
demarcation
the setting or marking of boundaries or limits as a line
inquisition
a severe interrogation; a systematic questioning
ameliorate; exacerbate
to make a situation better OPPOSED TO! to make a situation worse
contiguous
sharing an edge or boundary; touching
desiccate
thoroughly dried out; lifeless, arid
pertinent
relevant; to the point
complicity
association or participation in a wrongful act
exonerate, exculpate
to free from guilt or blame
indisputable
not open to question; irrefutable
precedent
an act or instance that is used as an example in dealing with subsequent similar instances
unprecedented
without previous example
malfeasance
misconduct or wrongdoing, especially by a public official
arrest
to bring to a stop; halt
gravity
a serious situation or problem
precipitate
a result or outcome of an action
relief
elevation or a land surface
check
to restrain; halt; contain
flag
to become weak. feeble, or to lose interest
discrimination
characterized by the ability to make fine distinctions; refined taste
eclipse
overshadow; outshine
coin
to devise a new word or phrase
stock
a stereotypical and formulaic character in a novel or film
currency
general acceptance or use, prevalence
bent
a strong tendency; a leaning; an inclination
court
to attempt to gain the favor or support of a person or group
negotiate
to successfully travel through, around, or over terrain
temper
to soften; moderate; mitigate
pedestrian
undistinguished; ordinary; conventional
cavalier
an arrogant attitude; a haughty disregard for others
sanction
an official approval/disapproval for an action
compromise
to reduce the quality or value of something; to jeopardize
channel
to direct or guide along a desired course
lambaste
denounce; strongly criticize
quiescent
marked by inactivity; a state of quiet repose
provisional
temporary, tentative
lurid
sensational, shocking, ghastly
truculent, pugnacious, belligerent
aggressive,
propitiate
to appease; to conciliate; to regain the favor or good will of
elan
a vigorous spirit; a great enthusiasm
perfunctory
something preformed in a spiritless, mechanical, and routine manner
aplomb
self-assurance; confident composure; admirable poise under pressure
opacity
hard to understand; impenetrably dense and obscure
craven
characterized by acting in a cowardly manner
venal
corrupt; dishonest; open to bribery
licentious
immoral; dissolute; debauched
noxious
harmful; injurious to health
superfluous, extraneous
unnecessary; extra
duplicitous
deliberately deceptive in behavior or speech
profligate
wasteful; someone who squanders time and money by living for the moment
epiphany
a sudden realization; an insightful moment
insidious
causing harm in a subtle or stealthy manner; devious
vacuous, inane
empty; lacking serious purpose; vapid
harbinger, portent, presage
indications or omens that something important or calamitous is about to occur
beleaguer
to beset; to surround with problems
burgeon
to grow rapidly and expand
imperious
domineering and arrogant; haughty
petulant
peevish, irritable
complaisant, complacent
amiable; agreeable; affable OPPOSED TO! over-contented; self-satisfied
fawn
to behave in a servile manner
obdurate, intransigent
very stubborn; obstinate; unyieldingly persistent; inflexible; intractable
redolent
exuding fragrance; full of a specified smell
chicanery
deception by subterfuge; deliberate trickery
conundrum
a difficult problem; a dilemma with no easy solution
slight
a disrespectful or disparaging remark
capitulate
to surrender; comply without protest
disheartening
very discouraging; dismaying
apocryphal
of doubtful authenticity
magisterial
learned and authoritative
plasticity, malleable, pliable
flexible; easily shaped, especially by outside influences or forces
chagrin
the feeling of distress caused by humiliation, failure or embarrassment
obstreperous
noisily and stubbornly defiant; unruly; boisterous
idyllic
charmingly simple and carefree
dilapidated
having fallen into a state of disrepair; broken down; in deplorable condition
extemporize, improvise
both mean to lecture or speak without notes
myriad
many; numerous
ungainly
awkward; clumsy
dilatory
habitually late
vituperative
characterized by verbal abuse; bitter criticism
discordant
not in harmony; incompatible; at variance with
perfidious
treacherous; traitorous; deceitful
proliferation
to rapidly increase
indomitable. resolute
very determined; unwavering
moribund
approaching death; about to become obsolete
nuance
a subtle shade of meaning or feeling; a light degree of difference
flippant, facetious
treating serious matters with lighthearted humor or lack of respect
credulous
easily convinced; tending to believe too readily; gullible
florid
flowery in style; very ornate
excoriating, scathing
expressing strong disapproval; condemning; to loudly decry
interloper
an intruder; a gatecrasher
cerebral; visceral
intellectual, not emotional OPPOSED TO! instinctive, not rational
nonplussed, confounded
utterly perplexed; completely puzzled; totally bewildered
ignominious
humiliating; shameful; disgraceful
idiosyncrasy
a trait or mannerism that is peculiar to an individual
censorious and captious
highly critical; fault-finding
consternation
a state of great dismay and confusion
didactic and edify
designed or intended to teach and instruct
elucidate
to make clear or plain, especially by explanation
effusive
unrestrained praise
prolific
very productive
furor
a general commotion; an uproar
paranoia
a tendency on the part of an individual or group toward excessive or irrational suspiciousness; irrational fear
marginal and peripheral
of secondary importance; not central
obfuscate
to deliberately confuse; to make something so confusing that it is hard to understand
flummox
to confuse; perplex
spate
a large number or amount
ineffable
a feeling that cannot be put into words; indescribable
histrionic and overwrought
excessively dramatic; a deliberate display of emotion
placate
to soothe or calm; appease
eschew
to avoid; shun; stay clear of
stopgap
a temporary solution designed to meet an urgent need
flotsam
the floating wreckage of a ship; debris
restitution
the act of making good or compensating for a loss damage or injury
churlish, sullen, surly
all three mean ill-tempered; rude; lacking civility
disquieting
disturbing; upsetting; causing unease
ornate
characterized by elaborate and expensive decorations; lavish
execrable, odious, repugnant
detestable; repulsive; extremely bad
perspicacious, prescient, discerning
all three words mean insightful and perceptive
eclectic
choosing or using a variety of sources
hiatus
an interruption in time or continuity; a break
vertiginous
characterized by or suffering from dizziness; having vertigo
esoteric and arcane
characterized by knowledge that is known only to a small group of specialists; obscure
supercilious
haughty disdain, arrogant superiority
cupidity
excessive greed especially for wealth; covetous
underwrite
to assume financial responsibility for
discomfited
uneasy; in a state of embarrassment
taciturn
habitually quiet; uncommunicative
sinecure
an office or position that requires little or no work and that usually provides an income
lugubrious
sad and mournful music
cosmopolitan; provincial, parochial insular
worldly; sophisticated; open minded OPPOSED TO! limited in perspective; restricted in scope and outlook
fecund
intellectually productive or inventive
ostentatious
showy; intended to attract notice; pretentious
guile
treacherous cunning; skillful deceit
sanguine
cheerfully confident; optimistic
scintillating
sparkling; shining; brilliantly clever
pristine
remaining in a pure state; uncorrupted by civilization
rampant
unrestrained; unchecked
pernicious
highly injurious; destructive; deadly
oblivious
lacking conscious awareness; unmindful; unaware
refractory
obstinately resistant to authority or control
garrulous, verbose, loquacious
annoyingly talkative; voluble
convivial
fond of feasting, drinking, and good company
brusque and curt
abrupt in manner or speech; discourteously blunt
tepid
lukewarm; mild; half-hearted
protean
readily taking on varied forms and meanings
solicitous
showing great care and concern; attentive
disingenuous
not straightforward or candid; insincere
venerate and revere
to regard with great respect; to hold in high esteem
contentious
quarrelsome; argumentative; disputatious
preclude
to make impossible; to rule; prevent
compunction, contrition, remorse
feelings of sincere and deep regret
demography
the study of the characteristics of human populations
aphorism, axiom
a statement universally accepted as true; a maxim
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