Sentence / MP3 Samples
Word / Pronunciation Definition Sample Sentence

(v.) to agree

(v.) to grant

(n.) agreement, harmony

1) The new bride found that her desire to postpone motherhood accorded nicely with her husbands desire to be financially secure before they started a family.

2) When Gandhi was assassinated, he was accorded the honor of a state funeral because many viewed him as the father of independence.

3) The nations of Europe came to an accord that ended the First World War on November 11th, 1918, but the peace did not last and Europe found itself embroiled in war again only twenty years later.


(n.) a light, purple-blue color

(adj.) having a light, purple-blue color

1) On summer mornings, the Mediterranean Sea turns an azure that is just a shade darker than turquoise, but lighter than its usual navy blue.

2) The painter captured the precise color of the azure sky by mixing several different shades of blue together.


(adj.) carefree, cheerfully indifferent

(adj.) joyous

1) As Bob leaned back in his chair and put his feet up on the desk, the headmaster said sternly, "Your blithe disregard for the rules at this school is going to get you into a lot of trouble, young man!"

2) She was a blithe young woman, smiling at strangers and singing even when she was alone.


(v.) to blame or criticize harshly

(n.) the act of criticizing harshly

1) The senator publicly censured the general for causing the needless deaths of so many soldiers, and demanded his resignation.

2) Even though Tom was the one who ruined the project, he escaped censure because the boss blamed Polly for the failure and reprimanded her, instead.


(v.) to defend oneself against, ward off

(v.) to take responsibility and provide for oneself

1) The men fended off their attackers by releasing a volley of flaming arrows at them from above.

2) The citizens of the ancient city-state Sparta would send its young boys out into the wild to fend for themselves: if they could keep predators at bay, find food to eat, and stay warm enough to live, they were allowed to rejoin their families


(v.) to hold back or to slow progress (often the passive "be hampered")

(n.) a basket for holding laundry

1) Shannon tried to keep up with the other hikers, but she was hampered by the large, painful blisters on her feet.

2) Bobby was about to throw his clothes into the hamper, but he noticed it was already filled to the brim with dirty laundry.


(adj.) impossible to see through

(adj.) very hard to understand

1) "Those sheer curtains are pretty, but I'd prefer opaque ones", said Nathaniel. "I don't want the neighbors to be able to watch me getting ready for bed at night!"

2) People sometimes complain that the country's tax laws are too opaque, and argue that they should be simplified so that the average person can understand them better.


[PAHR-tuh-zuhn], [----suhn]
(adj.) biased in support of one side, group, or party

(n.) a supporter, especially a violent one, of a certain faction

1) While many other writers try to be objective, Ann writes articles and books that are obviously partisan and always support right-wing causes.

2) Radical left-wing partisans set off a bomb near the presidential palace to protest the president's corruption and misconduct.


(adj.) honorable, very unwilling to be immoral or unprincipled

(adj.) diligent and meticulous, attentive to details

1) "Harry would never do something as unethical as taking a bribe", insisted Pete. "He's the most scrupulous man I've ever met!"

2) Because the health inspector paid scrupulous attention to minor details, all the restaurant owners in the city made sure that their kitchens were perfectly spotless on the days he came in for his inspections.


(v.) to justify and defend, to prove to be right

(v.) to free from blame or suspicion

1) At first, people thought Alexander Fleming's idea of using mold to treat bacterial infections was crazy, but his experiments vindicated his theories by proving that penicillin really worked.

2) Everyone in town thought Richard was guilty of murdering his brother, but he knew that the DNA test would prove that he wasn't at the scene of the crime, and vindicate him in court.