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SAT vocabulary: ostracize

What does ostracize mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word ostracize

First, before you read about the word ostracize, try this quick vocab quiz:

ostracize most nearly means

(A) banish
(B) insist
(C) destroy
(D) decline
(E) mimic

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word ostracize.

Part of Speech of ostracize

ostracize is a VERB.

Pronunciation ostracize

Here’s how to pronounce ostracize:

IPA: /ˈɒ.strə.saɪz/

Glossary-style: [AH-struh-saiz]

Definition of ostracize

ostracize means: exclude from a community or group, especially by consent of the group (Ex: to be ostracized from a circle of friends for criminal behavior).

Explain more about ostracize, please

To ostracize someone is simply to kick him out of a group, especially because he has done something very, very bad or even reprehensible. People are sometimes figuratively or literally ostracized from a group when they violate trust, say by commiting particularly violent crimes. For example, you and your friends may decide to ostracize a member of your circle of friends if you discover that he has somehow violated your trust (by lying, stealing, etc.).

Example of ostracize

Here’s the word ostracize used in a sentence:

Damien was ostracized by his friends at school after they found out that he had been lying and back-stabbing everyone to make new friends.

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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The “Catch-up Word of the Day”

In a nutshell: I am a little behind on sending out new vocabulary words. To get caught up, I will send out abbreviated Words of the Day for a short while.

Authoring a word of the day has turned out to be a lot more time-consuming than I had anticipated. I initially thought that it would be easy to come up with a new word every day, write a definition for it, and then send it out. But I quickly got requests for, among other things, pronunciation, examples, and more information. I also started adding a few extras myself – a vocabulary quiz, extra information, and the occasional image to accompany the word. I have also tinkered with the design a bit and have, the help of two other talented people, created a little PHP script that enables me to generate newsletters and vocab entries quickly.

However, I am still behind on the words. When I take the “kitchen sink” approach to writing the TestMagic SAT Word of the Day, it can take me three to four hours to write one entry. I won’t go into the details of finding the word, defining the word, writing the IPA pronunciation, finding a royalty-free image, and writing a vocabulary quiz, but it really does take that long. So, for a short while, I will send out shorter versions of TestMagic SAT Word of the Day. The good news is that the abbreviated SAT vocabulary word will be displayed in our shiny, new format, which I believe is much, much prettier than the previous version.

Any comments? Please post here, and thank you for reading and learning with us.

(This entry was dictated with Dragon Naturally Speaking.)

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SAT vocabulary: in vain

What does in vain mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word in vain

First, before you read about the word in vain, try this quick vocab quiz:

in vain most nearly means

(A) weak
(B) loud
(C) ineffectual
(D) slim
(E) potent

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word in vain.

Part of Speech of in vain

in vain is a PREPOSITIONAL PHRASE.

Pronunciation in vain

Here’s how to pronounce in vain:

IPA: /ɪn vɛɪn/

Glossary-style: [ihn vayn]

Definition of in vain

in vain means: not having the desired effect; useless, fruitless (Ex: tried in vain to persuade his parents to let him drive the car).

Explain more about in vain, please

If something is done in vain, then it simply does not work. For example, you may try to lift yourself up by your bootstraps, but you would not be able to (since doing so is physically impossible).

More realistically, though, we use in vain to describe failed attempts to accomplish something. For example, we could say that someone’s attempts to get only As all throughout high school and college were in vain.

Example of in vain

Here’s the word in vain used in a sentence:

I argued in vain with the police officer who was citing me for jaywalking by telling him that my name was Jay and I was therefore legally permitted to jaywalk.

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: loathe

What does loathe mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word loathe

First, before you read about the word loathe, try this quick vocab quiz:

loathe most nearly means

(A) act
(B) reject
(C) find
(D) abhor
(E) open

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word loathe.

Part of Speech of loathe

loathe is a(n) VERB.

Pronunciation loathe

Here’s how to pronounce loathe:

IPA: /loʊð/

Glossary-style: [LOAth]

Definition of loathe

loathe means: strongly dislike or feel disgust for something.

Explain more about loathe, please

If you loathe something, you hate it, strongly dislike it, feel nauseated when you hear about it or see it, etc. You get the idea–loathe basically means hate, but perhaps to a lesser degree. In other words:

loathe < hate One final note--the word hate has definite negative connotations, and some people avoid using the word because it may be deemed offensive. For example, if it’s socially unacceptable to say that you hate cilantro (an herb that people seem to either love or hate, um, dislike), it’s probably less so to say that you loathe it.

Example of loathe

Here’s the word loathe used in a sentence:

I loathe exercising in the mornings, but for some reason, I have plenty of energy in the afternoons.

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: impute

What does impute mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word impute

First, before you read about the word impute, try this quick vocab quiz:

impute most nearly means

(A) mar
(B) attribute
(C) scan
(D) lie
(E) express

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word impute.

Part of Speech of impute

impute is a VERB.

Pronunciation impute

Here’s how to pronounce impute:

IPA: /ɪm.ˈpyut/

Glossary-style: [ihm-PYOOT]

Definition of impute

impute means: attribute or give responsibility to someone or something for doing something, especially something bad (Ex: impute selfishness to one’s actions).

Explain more about impute, please

impute is one of those words that’s easy to understand, but a bit hard to explain, like although and the slang term cool.

It’s often best to explain words like this with examples, so let’s start with an example before we get to the definition. Imagine that you’ve given a gift to your teacher. A cynical person might impute selfish motives to your action, saying, for example, that you are giving your teacher a gift so that she or he will look upon you more favorably or will perhaps reward your generosity with a higher grade.

So, in a nutshell, if you impute something to someone, you say that that peson is responsible for it. In the above case, we are imputing selfish motives to you for giving your teacher a gift. (And nothing personal; this is just an example. :) )

Example of impute

Here’s the word impute used in a sentence:

His family members initially did not want to impute greed to Mr. Madoff, but they had no choice but to do so when his infamous Ponzi scheme was uncovered.

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: whimsical

What does whimsical mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word whimsical

First, before you read about the word whimsical, try this quick vocab quiz:

whimsical most nearly means

(A) fruitful
(B) tempting
(C) esteemed
(D) drenched
(E) fanciful

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word whimsical.

Part of Speech of whimsical

whimsical is an ADJECTIVE.

Pronunciation whimsical

Here’s how to pronounce whimsical:

IPA: /ˈwɪm.zɪ.kəl/

Glossary-style: [WIHM-zih-kuhl]

Definition of whimsical

whimsical means: impulsive, unpredictable, illogical, or capricious in character or action (Ex: it was whimsical to jump into the pool fully clothed).

Explain more about whimsical, please

whimsical means unpredicable in a way that is often interesting or entertaining. For example, the Through the Looking-Glass (popularly known in America as “Alice in Wonderland”) stories could be considered whimsical because the characters and events of the stories are so unusual. To name one: there’s the Cheshire Cat, who slowly disappears almost entirely except for its grin.

Example of whimsical

Here’s the word whimsical used in a sentence:

Whimsical by nature, Dana surprised none who knew him when he jumped into the pool with all his clothes on simply because (as he later explained) “the water was so enticing!”

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: indolent

What does indolent mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word indolent

First, before you read about the word indolent, try this quick vocab quiz:

indolent most nearly means

(A) autonomous
(B) firm
(C) plastic
(D) lazy
(E) silly

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word indolent.

Part of Speech of indolent

indolent is an ADJECTIVE.

Pronunciation indolent

Here’s how to pronounce indolent:

IPA: /ˈɪn.də.lənt/

Glossary-style: [IHN-duh-luhnt]

Definition of indolent

indolent means: disliking work or effort; lazy (Ex: an indolent worker). causing or expressing laziness. causing little or no pain (Ex: an indolent tumor).

Explain more about indolent, please

indolent simply means lazy. If someone is indolent, they she or he simply does not like to work or do anything that is physically demanding. For example, an indolent person might avoid exercise, gettting up out of a comfortable chair, or housework–pretty much anything that burns calories!

Example of indolent

Here’s the word indolent used in a sentence:

Indolent by nature, Slow Sam the Sloth was one of the laziest people you ever met–if he dropped something on the floor, he wouldn’t pick it up; if he had to write an essay, he’d copy and paste it from Web sites; if he wanted something from the store a block away, he’d drive rather than walk.

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: inexplicable

What does inexplicable mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word inexplicable

First, before you read about the word inexplicable, try this quick vocab quiz:

inexplicable most nearly means

(A) piquant
(B) unaccountable
(C) unsure
(D) aged
(E) acerbic

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word inexplicable.

Part of Speech of inexplicable

inexplicable is an ADJECTIVE.

Pronunciation inexplicable

Here’s how to pronounce inexplicable:

IPA: /ɪn.ˈɛk.splɪ.kə.bəl/

Glossary-style: [ihn-ehk-SPLIH-kuh-buhl]

Definition of inexplicable

inexplicable means: not able to be explained or accounted for (Ex: she was inexplicably silent when receiving the award).

Explain more about inexplicable, please

inexplicable simply means not able to be explained. For example, if you give someone $100, and he doesn’t seem thankful, you could say that his behavior is inexplicable since you can’t figure out why he doesn’t show gratitude.

Example of inexplicable

Here’s the word inexplicable used in a sentence:

For some inexplicable reason, Clark suddenly left the room right when he could have been of great help. (Fortunately, Superman showed up only moments later.)

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Answer to the quick vocab quiz

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SAT vocabulary: fervent

What does fervent mean? Read below for the definition.

Quick vocab quiz for the word fervent

First, before you read about the word fervent, try this quick vocab quiz:

fervent most nearly means

(A) insane (B) zealous (C) tepid (D) ireful (E) irked

Write your answer down, or just store it in that razor-sharp mind of yours. (If you can’t wait, the answer is below.)

Now let’s learn about the word fervent.

Part of Speech of fervent

fervent is an ADJECTIVE.

Pronunciation fervent

Here’s how to pronounce fervent:

IPA: /ˈfɜr.vənt/

Glossary-style: [fur-VUHNT]

Definition of fervent

fervent means: having or showing great enthusiasm, passion, or zeal for something (Ex: fervent applause). extremely hot; glowing.

Explain more about fervent, please

fervent basically means very enthusiastic, excited, or passionate about something. The word fervent comes from the Latin word fervere, which means to boil, so fervent has a definite connotation of heat and passion.

So, you can be a fervent fan of a sports team, a happy audience could erupt into fervent applause, or you could defend a friend fervently.

Example of fervent

Here’s the word fervent used in a sentence:

Renato is a fervent fan of the local futbol team Flamengo; before every match, he paints his face red and black and puts on the Flamengo uniform.

If you’ve read this far, you’re a great student and will learn vocabulary quickly. You may now check your answer.

Answer to the quick vocab quiz