Sentence / MP3 Samples
Word / Pronunciation Definition Sample Sentence

(n.) a pain reliever

(adj.) causing pain relief

1) When Jonathan told the doctor that his toothache was unbearably painful, the doctor prescribed an analgesic for him to take.

2) Roy put the ice pack on his sprained ankle mainly for its analgesic properties, but in addition to lessening his pain, the ice also helped reduce swelling.


(n.) a person or group who fits into the middle-class

(adj.) of or pertaining to middle class values and attitudes, characterized by materialistic pursuits

1) During the French Revolution, commoners rose up against both the nobles and the bourgeois, who they felt were living opulent lifestyles that relied on the suffering and hard work of the poor.

2) After WORLD WAR II, a bourgeois lifestyle became attainable for the majority of Americans: many families were able to own a home, a car, and modern amenities like washing machines.


(adj.) rolled up or twisted

(adj.) complex and involved

1) The small intestine can fit in the human abdomen only because of its convoluted shape; if it were untangled and stretched out lengthwise, it would be approximately twenty-two feet long.

2) The plot of the novel was so convoluted, involving multiple characters, hidden identities, and complicated subplots, that Marcia was totally confused by the end of the book.


(v.) to confuse the arrangement of

(v.) to drive insane

1) Upon returning home from her vacation, Lisa was upset to find that her husband had deranged the living room of their house: all the furniture was shoved to the walls, and books from the shelves lay scattered on the floor.

2) In the Hitchcock film Psycho, the main character is mentally deranged by the death of his mother, and becomes a crazed killer as a result.


(n.) an action used to draw attention away from one's intended purpose

(v.) to draw attention away from one's purpose by deception

1) At times, a fencer might make a quick feint to test the reactions and possible defenses of his opponent before he attacks in earnest.

2) The boxer feinted with his left hand, and while his opponent guarded himself on that side, he delivered a powerful knock-out punch with his right hand.


(v.) to summon or bring together

(n.) a gathering or grouping of people

1) In preparation for their final battles in France, the Allied governments mustered a huge number of troops on ships off of the shores of Normandy.

2) At the meeting, there was a bigger muster of parents than usual, so the principal had to fetch more chairs in order to seat everyone.


(adj.) common or inferior

(n.) a commoner

1) Frederica came from a wealthy London family and had attended the best schools, but she put on a plebeian accent when she spoke to strangers, because she wanted to fit in with regular people.

2) Urbane city-dwellers sometimes refer to people who live in the country as plebeians, since they believe that anyone who doesn't live in the city must be uneducated and simple.


(n.) a kingdom

(n.) a sphere or field of something

1) The king ruled his realm with kindness and justice, and he was loved throughout the land.

2) A good liberal arts education does not exclude any realm of knowledge: the English major learns the basics of physics, while the psychology student must also study music.


(n.) a hesitation or doubt coming from the feeling that one may be doing something that is immoral

(v.) to hesitate or to have reservations about doing something that may be wrong

1) Clark's scruples wouldn't allow him to go to his parents and borrow money that he knew he couldn't pay back, but his brother had no such moral inhibitions, and borrowed several thousand dollars from their parents to buy a car.

2) During her rise to fame, the actress didn't scruple to pose nude for magazines, but once she was famous, she claimed that she had been forced to pose by her manager.


(adj.) made of inferior craftsmanship

(adj.) dishonest

1) The realtor disguised how shoddy the house was by repainting it, and the unlucky man who bought it had to repair the roof and replace the crumbling foundation himself.

2) The shoddy businessman ran his company with only personal profit in mind, and he swindled many honest people out of their savings.