100 terms

100 Advanced English Words

Advanced words to use in IELTs, TOEFLs and other Cambridge exams. Source: world-english.org
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aberration
(n.) something that differs from the norm
(In 1974, Poland won the World Cup, but the success turned out to be an _____ and Poland have not won a World Cup since.)
abhor
(v.) to hate, detest
(Because he always wound up getting hit in the head when he tried to play cricket, Marcin began to _____ the sport).
acquiesce
(v.) to agree without protesting
(Though Mr. Pospieszny wanted to stay outside and work in his garage, when his wife told him that he had better come in to dinner, he _____ to her demands.)
alacrity
(n.) great willingness or enthusiasm
(For some reason, Simon loved to help his girlfriend whenever he could, so when his girlfriend asked him to set the table he did so with _____.)
amiable
(adj.) friendly
(An _____ fellow, Neil got along with just about everyone.)
appease
(v.) to calm, satisfy
(When Jerry cries, his mother gives him chocolate to _____ him.)
arcane
(adj.) obscure, secret, known only by a few
(This argument may seem ____ to those not closely involved in the world of finance.)
avarice
(n.) excessive greed
(The banker's _____ led him to amass an enormous personal fortune.)
brazen
(adj.) excessively bold, brash, clear and obvious
(Critics condemned the writer's _____ attempt to plagiarise Frankow-Czerwonko's work.)
brusque
(adj.) short, abrupt, dismissive
(Simon's _____ manner sometimes offends his colleagues.)
callous
(adj.) harsh, cold, unfeeling
(The murderer's _____ lack of remorse shocked the jury.)
candor
(n.) honesty, frankness
(We were surprised by the _____ of the politician's speech because she is usually rather evasive.)
chide
(v.) to voice disapproval
(Hania _____ Gregory for his vulgar habits and sloppy appearance.)
circumspect
(adj.) cautious
(Though I promised Marta's father I would bring her home promptly by midnight, it would have been more _____ not to have specified a time.)
clandestine
(adj.) secret
(Announcing to her boyfriend that she was going to the library, Maria actually went to meet George for a _____ liaison.)
coerce
(v.) to make somebody do something by force or threat
(The court decided that David Beckham did not have to honor the contract because he had been _____ into signing it.)
coherent
(adj.) logically consistent, intelligible
(William could not figure out what Harold had seen because he was too distraught to deliver a _____ statement.)
complacency
(n.) a feeling of calm satisfaction with your own abilities or situation that prevents you from trying harder
(What annoys me about these girls is their ____ - they seem to have no desire to expand their horizons.)
confidant
(n.) a person entrusted with secrets
(Shortly after we met, he became my chief _____.)
connive
(v.) to plot, scheme
(She _____ to get me to give up my plans to start up a new business.)
cumulative
(adj.) increasing, building upon itself
(The _____ effect of hours spent using the World English website was a vast improvement in his vocabulary and general level of English.)
debase
(v.) to reduce the quality or value of something
(Sport is being ____ by commercial sponsorship.)
decry
(v.) to criticize openly
(Andrzej Lepper, the leader of the Polish Self Defence party _____ the appaling state of Polish roads.)
deferential
(adj.) showing respect for another's authority
(Donata is always excessively _____ to any kind of authority figure.)
demure
(adj.) quiet, modest, reserved
(Though everyone else at the party was dancing and going crazy, she remained _____.)
deride
(v.) to laugh at mockingly, scorn
(The native speaker often _____ the other teacher's accent.)
despot
(n.) one who has total power and rules brutally
(The _____ issued a death sentence for anyone who disobeyed his laws.)
diligent
(adj.) showing care in doing one's work
(The diligent researcher made sure to double check her measurements.)
elated
adj.) overjoyed, thrilled
(When he found out he had won the lottery, the postman was _____.)
eloquent
(adj.) expressive, articulate, moving
(The best man gave such an _____ speech that most guests were crying.)
embezzle
(v.) to steal money by falsifying records
(The accountant was fired for _____ €10,000 of the company's funds.)
empathy
(n.) sensitivity to another's feelings as if they were one's own
(I feel such _____ for my dog when she's upset so am I!)
enmity
(n.) ill will, hatred, hostility
(John and Scott have clearly not forgiven each other, because the _____ between them is obvious to anyone in their presence.)
erudite
(adj.) learned
(My English teacher is such an _____ scholar that he has translated some of the most difficult and abstruse Old English poetry.)
extol
(v.) to praise, revere
(Kamila _____ the virtues of a vegetarian diet to her meat-loving boyfriend.)
fabricate
(v.) to make up, invent
(When I arrived an hour late to class, I _____ some excuse about my car breaking down on the way to work.)
feral
(adj.) wild, savage
(That beast looks so _____ that I would fear being alone with it.)
flabbergasted
(adj.) astounded
(Whenever I read an Agatha Christie mystery novel, I am always _____ when I learn the identity of the murderer.)
forsake
(v.) to give up, renounce
(I won't _____ my conservative principles.)
fractious
(adj.) troublesome or irritable
(Although the child insisted he wasn't tired, his _____ behaviour - especially his decision to crush his jam sandwiches all over the floor - convinced everyone present that it was time to put him to bed.)
furtive
(adj.) secretive, sly
(Claudia's placement of her drugs in her sock drawer was not as _____ as she thought, as the sock drawer is the first place most parents look.)
gluttony
n.) overindulgence in food or drink
(Helen's fried chicken tastes so divine, I don't know how anyone can call _____ a sin.)
gratuitous
(adj.) uncalled for, unnecessary
(A lot of viewers complained that there was too much ____ sex and violence in the film.)
haughty
(adj.) disdainfully proud
(The superstar's _____ dismissal of her co-stars will backfire on her someday.)
hypocrisy
(n.) pretending to believe what one does not
(Once the politician began passing legislation that contradicted his campaign promises, his _____ became apparent.)
impeccable
(adj.) exemplary, flawless
(If your grades were as _____ as your brother's, then you too would receive a car for a graduation present.)
impertinent
(adj.) rude, insolent
(Most of your comments are so _____ that I don't wish to dignify them with an answer.)
implacable
(adj.) incapable of being appeased or mitigated
(Watch out: once you shun Grandmother's cooking, she is totally _____.)
impudent
(adj.) casually rude, insolent, impertinent
(The _____ young woman looked her teacher up and down and told him he was hot.)
incisive
(adj.) clear, sharp, direct
(The discussion wasn't going anywhere until her _____ comment allowed everyone to see what the true issues were.)
indolent
(adj.) lazy
(Why should my _____ children, who can't even pick themselves up off the sofa to pour their own juice, be rewarded with a trip to Burger King?)
inept
(adj.) not suitable or capable, unqualified
(She proved how _____ she was when she forgot two orders and spilled a pint of cider in a customer's lap.)
infamy
(n.) notoriety, extreme ill repute
(The _____ of his crime will not lessen as time passes.)
inhibit
(v.) to prevent, restrain, stop
(When I told you I needed the car last night, I certainly never meant to _____ you from going out.)
innate
(adj.) inborn, native, inherent
(His incredible athletic talent is _____, he never trains, lifts weights, or practices.)
insatiable
(adj.) incapable of being satisfied
(There seems to be an ____ demand for more powerful computers.)
insular
(adj.) separated and narrow-minded; tight-knit, closed off
(Because of the sensitive nature of their jobs, those who work for MI5 must remain _____ and generally only spend time with each other.)
intrepid
(adj.) brave in the face of danger
(After scaling a live volcano prior to its eruption, the explorer was praised for his _____ attitude.)
inveterate
(adj.) stubbornly established by habit
(I'm the first to admit that I'm an _____ cider drinker—I drink four pints a day.)
jubilant
(adj.) extremely joyful, happy
(The crowd was _____ when the firefighter carried the woman from the flaming building.)
knell
(n.) the solemn sound of a bell, often indicating a death
(Echoing throughout our village, the funeral _____ made the grey day even more grim.)
lithe
(adj.) graceful, flexible, supple
(Although the dancers were all outstanding, Joanna's control of her _____ body was particularly impressive.)
lurid
(adj.) shocking because involving violence, sex or immoral activity
(The paper gave all the ___ details of the murder.)
maverick
(n.) an independent, nonconformist person
(John is a real _____ and always does things his own way.)
maxim
(n.) a common saying expressing a principle of conduct
(Ms. Stone's etiquette _____ are both entertaining and instructional.)
meticulous
(adj.) extremely careful with details
(The ornate needlework in the bride's gown was a product of _____ handiwork.)
modicum
(n.) a small amount of something
(Refusing to display even a _____ of sensitivity, Magda announced her boss's affair to the entire office.)
morose
(adj.) gloomy or sullen
(David's _____ nature made him very unpleasant to talk to.)
myriad
(adj.) consisting of a very great number
(It was difficult to decide what to do on Saturday night because the city presented us with _____ possibilities for fun.)
nadir
(n.) the lowest point of something
(My day was boring, but the _____ came when my new car was stolen.)
nominal
(adj.) trifling, insignificant
(Because he was moving the following week and needed to get rid of his furniture more than he needed money, Kim sold everything for a _____ price.)
novice
(n.) a beginner, someone without training or experience
(Because we were all _____ at archery, our instructor decided to begin with the basics
nuiance
(n.) a slight variation in meaning, tone, expression
(The _____ the poem were not obvious to the casual reader, but the teacher was able to point them out.)
oblivious
(adj.) lacking consciousness or awareness of something
(Absorbed in her work, she was totally ___ of her surroundings.)
obsequious
(adj.) too eager to praise or obey someone
(She is almost embarrassingly ___to anyone in authority.)
obtuse
(adj.) stupid and slow to understand, or unwilling to try to understand
(Political opponents warned that the prime minister's _____ approach to foreign policy would embroil the nation in mindless war.)
panacea
(n.) a remedy for all ills or difficulties
(Doctors wish there was a single _____ for every disease, but sadly there is not.)
parody
(n.) writing, music, art, speech, etc. which intentionally copies the style of someone famous or copies a particular situation, making the features or qualities of the original more noticeable in a way that is humorous
(He was an eighteenth-century author who wrote ___ of other people's works.)
penchant
(n.) a tendency, partiality, preference
(Fiona's dinner parties quickly became monotonous on account of her _____ for Indian dishes.)
perusal
(n.) a careful examination, review
(The actor agreed to accept the role after a three-month _____ of the movie script.)
plethora
(n.) an abundance, excess
(The ___ of rules and regulations is both contradictory and confusing.)
predilection
(n.) a preference or inclination for something
(James has a _____ for eating toad in the whole with tomato ketchup.)
quaint
(adj.) charmingly old-fashioned
(Mary was delighted by the _____bonnets she saw in Romania.)
rash
(adj.) hasty, incautious
(It's best to think things over calmly and thoroughly, rather than make ___ decisions.)
refurbish
(v.) to restore, clean up
(After being _____ the old Triumph motorcycle commanded the handsome price of $6000.)
repudiate
(v.) to reject, refuse to accept
(Tom made a strong case for an extension of his curfew, but his mother _____ it with a few biting words.)
rife
(adj.) abundant
(Surprisingly, the teacher's writing was _____ with spelling errors.)
salient
(adj.) most important or noticeable
( She pointed out the ___ features of the new design.)
serendipity
(n.) luck, finding good things without looking for them
(In an amazing bit of_____, penniless Mark found a $50 bill on the back seat of the bus.)
staid
(adj.) sedate, serious, boring and slightly old-fashioned
(In an attempt to change its ___ image, the newspaper has created a new section aimed at younger readers.)
superfluous
(adj.) exceeding what is necessary
(Samantha had already won the campaign so her constant flattery of others was _____.)
sycophant
(n.) one who flatters for self-gain
(Some see the people in the cabinet as the Prime Minister's closest advisors, but others see them as _____.)
taciturn
(adj.) not inclined to talk
(Though Magda never seems to stop talking, her brother is quite _____.)
truculent
(adj.) tending to argue or be bad-tempered; slightly aggressive
(This club doesn't really attract the dangerous types, so why was that bouncer being so _____?)
take umbrage
(n.) to feel upset or annoyed, usually because you feel that someone has been rude or shown a lack of respect to you
(He called me a lily-livered coward, and I ____ at the insult. / You don't think she'll ____ if she isn't invited to the wedding, do you?)
venerable
(adj.) deserving of respect because of age or achievement
(The _____ High Court judge had made several key rulings in landmark cases throughout the years.)
vex
(v.) to confuse or annoy
(My boyfriend _____ me by pinching my bottom for hours on end.)
vociferous
(adj.) loud, boisterous
(I'm tired of his _____ whining so I'm breaking up with him.)
wanton
(adj.) undisciplined, lewd, lustful
(Joanna's _____ demeanor often made the frat guys next door very excited.)
zenith
(n.) the highest point, culminating point
(I was too nice to tell Emily that she had reached the absolute _____ of her career with that one top 10 hit of hers.)