abash

embarass

abominate

loathe, hate

abase

lower, degrade, humiliate

abbreviate

shorten

abdicate

renounce give up

aberrant

abnormal, deviant

abet

assist, encourage (especially in doing something wrong)

ablution

washing

abolish

cancel, put an end to

abominable

detestable, extremely unpleasant, very bad

abrasive

rubbing away; tending to grind down

abridge

condense or shorten

absolve

pardon (an offense)

abstain

refrain, withhold from participation

abstinence

restraint from eating or drinking, not being sexually active

abstract

ADJ. theoretical, not concrete, nonrepresentational; N. summary

abusive

coarsely insulting, physically harmful

abortive

unsuccessful, fruitless

abut

border upon, adjoin

abyss

enormous chasm, vast bottomless pit

academic

related to a school, not practical or directly useful

accede

agree

accelerate

move faster

accessible

easy to approach, obtainable

acclaim

applaud, announce with great approval

acclimate

adjust to climate or environment, adapt

acclivity

sharp upslope of a hill

accolade

award of merit

accommodate

oblige or help someone, adjust or bring into harmony, adapt

accomplice

partner in crime

accost

approach and speak first to a person

accoutre

equip

acetic

vinegary

acme

peak, pinnacle, highest point

acoustics

science of sound; quality that makes a room easy or hard to hear in

acquiesce

assent, agree passively

acquittal

deliverance from a charge, a judgment of not guilty

acrid

sharp, bitterly pungent

actuarial

calculating, pertaining to insurance statistics

acuity

sharpness

adage

wise saying, proverb

adamant

hard, inflexible

adapt

alter, modify, adjust to

addendum

addition, appendix to a book, something which is added

addiction

compulsive habitual need

addle

make or become confused; muddle; drive crazy; become rotten (egg)

address

V. direct a speech to; deal with or discuss; direct one's efforts or attention to; make with a destination; N. formal speech

adept

expert at; very skilled

adhere

stick fast, cling to, be a devoted follower

adhesion

devotion, loyalty; the tendency of dissimilar things to cling together

adjunct

something attached to but holding as inferior position

adjutant

staff officer assisting the commander; assistant

admonish

warn, speak to with gentle disapproval, reprove

adroit

skillful (in using mind or hand)

aboriginal

being the first of its kind in its region, native, primative

abscond

depart secretly and hide

acrimonious

bitter in words or manner

acrimony

bitterness

acute

quickly perceptive, keen, brief (temporary) and severe

abate

subside or moderate

abeyance

suspended action, interlude, cessation

abnegation

renunciation, self-sacrifice, denial, self-denial

abrogate

abolish

abstruse

obscure, profound, difficult to understand

abysmal

bottomless

accessory

additional object, useful but not essential thing

accretion

growth, increase

accrue

come about by addition

acerbity

bitterness of speech and temper

acidulous

slightly sour, sharp, caustic

acknowledge

recognize, admit

acrophobia

fear of heights

actuate

motivate; trigger, activate

adjourn

suspend until a later time; move from one place to another

adjuration

solemn urging

abhor

detest, hate

abscission

cutting off, separation

abstemious

sparing in eating and drinking; temperate

acumen

mental keenness, insightfulness; a tapering point

abject

wretched, lacking pride

abjure

renounce upon oath, retract, forswear

aberration

deviation from the expected or the normal; mental irregularity or disorder

absolute

complete, totally unlimited, certain

accord

agreement, compliance, rapport

adulation

flattery, admiration that is more than is necessary or deserved

adulterate

make impure or of poorer quality by adding inferior or tainted (contaminated) substances

advent

arrival

adventitious

accidental, casual, happening by chance

adverse

going against, opposing, unfavorable, hostile

aegis

shield, protection, defense

aerie

nest of a large bird of prey

aesthetic

ADJ. artistic, dealing with or capable of appreciating the beautiful; N. a guiding principle in matters of taste, artistic sensibility

affidavit

written statement made under oath (for use in a court of law)

affluence

abundance, wealth

agape

open-mouthed, wide open; spiritual love

agenda

a program of things to be done or considered

agrarian

pertaining to land or its cultivation

alimentary

supplying nourishment

allay

calm, pacify

allege

state without proof

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