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Thread: Similar Words

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    Exceed If you drive too fast, you exceed or go beyond the speed limit.
    Accede "Accede" is a much rarer word meaning "give in," "agree."

    Accept If you offer me chocolates I will gladly accept them--except for the ones with caramel in them!
    Except Just remember that the "X" in "except" excludes things. And be careful when typing "except" it often comes out as "expect."

    Adopt You can adopt a child or a custom; in all of these cases you are making the object of the adoption your own, accepting it.
    Adapt If you adapt something, however, you are changing it. Or you may changing yourself to "adapt" to a new situation!

    Adverse The word "adverse" turns up most frequently in the phrase "adverse circumstances," meaning difficult circumstances, circumstances which act as an adversary.
    Averse People often confuse adverse with "averse," a much rarer word, meaning having a strong feeling against, or aversion toward.

    Advice "Advice" is the noun. When your teacher advises you, she gives you advice. Giving a suggestion.
    Advise "Advise" is the verb.

    Allude You can allude (refer) to your daughter's membership in the honor society when boasting about her.
    Elude A criminal tries to elude (escape) captivity. There is no such word as "illude."

    Affect There are four distinct words here. When "affect" is accented on the final syllable (a-FECT), it is a verb meaning "have an influence on." "The million-dollar donation from the industrialist did not affect my vote against the Clean Air Act."
    A much rarer meaning is indicated when the word is accented on the first syllable (AFF-ect), meaning "emotion." In this case the word is used mostly by psychiatrists and social scientists-- people who normally know how to spell it.
    Effect The real problem arises when people confuse the first spelling with the second: "effect." This too can be two different words. The more common one is a noun: "When I left the stove on, the effect was that the house filled with smoke." When you affect a situation, you have an effect on it.
    The less common is a verb meaning "to create": "I'm trying to effect a change in the way we purchase widgets." No wonder people are confused. Hey, nobody ever said English was logical: just memorize it and get on with your life.

    Altogether "Altogether" is an adverb meaning "completely," "entirely." For example: "When he first saw the examination questions, he was altogether baffled."
    All together "All together," in contrast, is a phrase meaning "in a group." For example: "The wedding guests were gathered all together in the garden."

    Allusion An allusion is a reference. Something that you allude to: "Her allusion to flowers reminded me that Valentine's Day was coming.
    Illusion "In that English paper, don't write "literary illusions" when you mean "allusions." A mirage, hallucination, or a magic trick is an illusion. (Doesn't being fooled just make you ill?)

    Amoral "Amoral" is a rather technical word meaning "unrelated to morality."
    Immoral When you mean to denounce someone's behavior, you call it "immoral."

    Anecdote A humorist relates "anecdotes" or stories.
    Antidote The doctor prescribes "antidotes" for children who have swallowed poison. Laughter may be the best medicine, but that's no reason to confuse these two with each other.

    Appraise When you estimate the value of something, you appraise it.
    Apprise When you inform people of a situation, you apprise them of it.

    Capitol A "capitol" is always a building.
    Capital Cities and all other uses are spelled with an A in the last syllable.

    Cite You cite the author in an end note.
    Site You visit a Web site or the site of the crime
    Sight You sight your car being towed away from the gate you parked in front of!
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    Clique
    Click Students lamenting the division of their schools into snobbish factions often misspell "clique" as "click." In the original French, "clique" was synonymous with "claque"--an organized group of supporters at a theatrical event who tried to prompt positive audience response by clapping enthusiastically.

    Collaborate People who work together on a project collaborate (share their labor);
    Corroborate people who support your testimony as a witness corroborate (strengthen by confirming) it.

    Compare to These are sometimes interchangeable but when you are stressing on the similarities between items being compared, the most common word is "to": "She compared his home-made wine to toxic waste."
    Compare with If you are examining both similarities and differences, use "with": "The teacher compared Steve's exam with Robert's to see whether they had cheated."

    Continuous "Continuous" refers to actions which are uninterrupted: "My upstairs neighbor played his stereo continuously from 6:00 PM to 3:30 AM."
    Continual Continual actions, however, need not be uninterrupted, only repeated: "My father continually urges me to get a job."

    Compliment Originally these two spellings were used interchangeably, but they have come to be distinguished from each other in modern times. Most of the time the word people intend is "compliment": nice things said about someone ("She paid me the compliment of admiring the way I shined my shoes.").
    Complement "Complement," much less common, has a number of meanings that are associated with matching or completing. Complements supplement each other, each adding something the others lack, so we can say that "Alice's love for entertaining and Mike's love for washing dishes complement each other."

    Council
    The first two words, Council and Counsel are pronounced the same way but have distinct meanings. An official group that deliberates, like the Council of Ministers is a "council";
    Counsel The rest are "counsels": your lawyer, advice, etc.
    Consul A consul is a local representative of a foreign government.

    Credible "Credible" means "believable" or "trustworthy." It is also used in a more abstract sense, meaning something like "worthy": "She made a credible lyric soprano."
    Credulous Don't confuse "credible" with "credulous," a much rarer word which means "gullible." "He was incredulous" means "he didn't believe it" whereas "he was incredible" means "he was wonderful" (but use the latter expression only in casual speech).

    Criterion
    Criteria There are several words with Latin or Greek roots whose plural forms ending in A are constantly mistaken for singular ones. You can have one criterion or many criteria. Don't confuse them.
    Same rule applies for words such as Phenomenon & Phenomena.

    Critique A critique is a detailed evaluation of something. The formal way to request one is "give me your critique," though people often say informally "critique this"--meaning "evaluate it thoroughly." But "critique" as a verb is not synonymous with "criticize" and should not be routinely substituted for it. "Josh critiqued my backhand" means Josh evaluated your tennis technique but not necessarily that he found it lacking.
    Criticize "Josh criticized my backhand" means that he had a low opinion of it. You can write criticism on a subject, but you don't criticize on something, you just criticize it.

    Defuse You defuse a dangerous situation by treating it like a bomb and removing its fuse.
    Diffuse To diffuse, in contrast, is to spread something out: "Bob's cheap cologne diffused throughout the room, wrecking the wine-tasting."
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    Depreciate To depreciate something is to actually make it worse.
    Deprecate To deprecate something is simply to speak or think of it in a manner that demonstrates your low opinion of it.

    Device "Device" is a noun. A can-opener is a device.
    Devise "Devise" is a verb. You can devise a plan for opening a can with a sharp rock instead. Only in law is "devise" properly used as a noun, meaning something deeded in a will.

    Disburse You disburse money by taking it out of your purse (French "bourse") and distributing it.
    Disperse If you refuse to hand out any money, the eager mob of beggars before you may disperse (scatter).

    Discreet The more common word is "discreet," meaning "prudent, circumspect": "When arranging the party for Agnes, be sure to be discreet; we want her to be surprised."
    Discrete "Discrete" means "separate, distinct": "He arranged the guest list into two discrete groups: meat-eaters and vegetarians." Note how the T separates the two Es in "discrete."

    Uninterested A bored person is uninterested.
    Disinterested Do not confuse the above with the much rarer disinterested, which means "objective, neutral".

    Drastic
    Dramatic "Drastic" means "severe" and is always negative. Drastic measures are not just extreme, they are likely to have harmful side-effects. Don't use this word or "drastically" in a positive or neutral sense. A drastic rise in temperature should be seen as downright dangerous, not just surprisingly large. Often people mean "dramatic" instead.

    Dual "Dual" is an adjective describing the two-ness of something; dual carburetors, for instance.
    Duel A "duel" is a formal battle intended to settle a dispute.

    Elicit The lawyer tries to elicit a description of the attacker from the witness. "Elicit" is always a verb.
    Illicit "Illicit," in contrast, is always an adjective describing something illegal or naughty.

    Emigrate To "emigrate" is to leave a country. The E at the beginning of the word is related to the E in other words having to do with going out, such as "exit."
    Immigrate "Immigrate," in contrast, looks as if it might have something to do with going in, and indeed it does: it means to move into a new country. The same distinction applies to "emigration" and "immigration. A migrant is someone who continually moves about.

    Eminent By far the most common of these words is "eminent," meaning "prominent, famous."
    Imminent "Imminent," in phrases like "facing imminent disaster," means "threatening." It comes from Latin minere, meaning "to project or overhang." Positive events can also be imminent: they just need to be coming soon.
    Immanent The rarest of the three is "immanent," used by philosophers to mean "inherent" and by theologians to mean "present throughout the universe" when referring to God. It comes from Latin manere, "remain."
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    Assure To "assure" a person of something is to make him or her confident of it.
    Ensure To "ensure" that something happens is to make certain that it does.
    Insure To "insure" is to issue an insurance policy. However, many consider "ensure" and "insure" interchangeable. To please conservatives, make the distinction.

    Epigram An epigram is a pithy saying, usually humorous. Mark Twain was responsible for many striking, mostly cynical epigrams, such as "Always do right. That will gratify some of the people, and astonish the rest."
    Epigraph An epigraph is a brief quotation used to introduce a piece of writing or the inscription on a statue or building.
    Epitaph An epitaph is the inscription on a tombstone or some other tribute to a dead person.
    Epithet In literature, an epithet is a term that replaces or is added to the name of a person, like "clear-eyed Athena," in which "clear-eyed" is the epithet. You are more likely to encounter the term in its negative sense, as a term of insult or abuse: "the shoplifter hurled epithets at the guard who had arrested her."

    Exult When you celebrate joyfully, you exult.
    Exalt When you raise something high (even if only in your opinion), you exalt it.

    Foreboding "Foreboding" means "ominous," as in "The sky was a foreboding shade of gray" (i.e. predictive of a storm). The prefix "fore-" with an E, often indicates futurity, e.g. "forecast," "foreshadowing" and "foreword.
    Forbidding A forbidding person or task is hostile or dangerous: "The trek across the desert to the nearest latte stand was forbidding."
    Formidable "Formidable," which originally meant "fear-inducing" ("Mike Tyson is a formidable opponent") has come to be used primarily as a compliment meaning "awe-inducing" ("Gary Kasparov's formidable skills as a chess player were of no avail against Deep Blue").

    Forego The E in "forego" tells you it has to do with going before. It occurs mainly in the expression "foregone conclusion," a conclusion arrived at in advance.
    Forgo "Forgo" means to abstain from or do without. "After finishing his steak, he decided to forgo the blueberry cheesecake."
    Fortuitous "Fortuitous" events happen by chance; they need not be fortunate events, only random ones: "It was purely fortuitous that the meter reader came along five minutes before I returned to my car."
    Fortunate Although fortunate events may be fortuitous, when you mean "lucky," use "fortunate."

    Gaffe Gaffe is a French word meaning "embarrassing mistake," and should not be mixed up with "gaff".
    gaff Gaff is a large hook.

    Gild You gild an object by covering it with gold;
    Guild You can join an organization like the Theatre Guild.

    Grisly "Grisly" means "horrible".
    Grizzly A "grizzly" is a bear. "The grizzly left behind the grisly remains of his victim." "Grizzled," means "having gray hair," not to be confused with "gristly," full of gristle.

    Hero In ordinary usage "hero" has two meanings: "leading character in a story" and "brave, admirable person." In simple tales the two meanings may work together.
    Protagonist But in modern literature and film the leading character or "protagonist" (a technical term common in literary criticism) may behave in a very unheroic fashion.

    Hold your peace Some folks imagine that since these expressions are opposites, the last word in each should be the same; but in fact they are unrelated expressions. Hold your peace means "maintain your silence".
    Say your Piece This means literally "speak aloud a piece of writing" but is used to express the idea of making a statement.
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    Impertinent
    Impudent "Impertinent" looks as if it ought to mean the opposite of "pertinent," and indeed it once did; but for centuries now its meaning in ordinary speech has been narrowed to "impudent," specifically in regard to actions or speech toward someone regarded as socially superior. Only snobs and very old-fashioned people use "impertinent" correctly; most people would be well advised to forget it and use "irrelevant" instead to mean the opposite of "pertinent."

    Install You install equipment.
    Instill You instill feelings or attitudes.

    Liable If you are likely to do something you are liable to do it; and if a debt can legitimately be charged to you, you are liable for it.
    Libel A person who defames you with a false accusation libels you.

    Lose This confusion can easily be avoided if you pronounce the word intended aloud. If it has a voiced Z sound, then it's "lose."
    Loose If it has a hissy S sound, then it's "loose." Examples of correct usage: "He tends to lose his keys." "She lets her dog run loose." Note that when "lose" turns into "losing" it loses its "E."

    Mantle Though they stem from the same word, a "mantle" today is usually a cloak.
    Mantel The shelf over a fireplace is most often spelled "mantel."

    Marital "Marital" refers to "marriage".
    Martial "Martial" to "war", whose ancient god was Mars.

    Moral If you are trying to make people behave properly (ethical, good), you are policing their morals; "Moral" is accented on the first syllable.
    Morale If you are just trying to keep their spirits up, you are trying to maintain their morale. "Morale" is accented on the second syllable.

    Opress Dictators commonly oppress (tyrannize) their citizens and repress dissent, but these words don't mean exactly the same thing. Oppression is always bad, and implies serious persecution.
    Repress "Repress" means "keep under control." Sometimes repression is a good thing: "During the job interview, repress the temptation to tell Mr. Brown that he has toilet paper stuck to his shoe."

    Ordinance A law is an ordinance
    Ordnance A gun or weapon is a piece of ordnance.

    Oversee When you oversee (supervise) the preparation of dinner, you take control and manage the operation closely.
    Overlook But if you overlook (fail to notice) the preparation of dinner you forget to prepare the meal entirely--better order pizza.

    Palate Your "palate" is the roof of your mouth, and by extension, your sense of taste.
    Pallete A "palette" is the flat board an artist mixes paint on (or by extension, a range of colors).
    Pallet A "pallet" is either a bed (now rare) or a flat platform onto which goods are loaded.
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    Peak To "peak" is to reach the highest point.
    Peek To "peek" is to steal a look.
    Pique It is tempting to think that your attention might be aroused to a high point by "peaking" your curiosity; but in fact, "pique" is a French word meaning "prick," in the sense of "stimulate". The expression has nothing to do with "peek," either. Therefore the expression is "my curiosity was piqued."

    Persecute When you persecute someone, you're treating them badly, whether they deserve it or not.
    Prosecute But only legal officers can (put someone on trial) prosecute someone for a crime.

    Practice
    Practise In the United Kingdom, "practice" is the noun, "practise" the verb; but in the U.S. the spelling "practice" is commonly used for both, though the distinction is sometimes observed. "Practise" as a noun is, however, is always wrong in both places: a doctor always has a "practice," never a "practise."

    Perspective
    Prospective "Perspective" has to do with sight, as in painting, and is usually a noun. "Prospective" generally has to do with the future (compare with "What are your prospects, young man?") and is usually an adjective. But beware: there is also a rather old-fashioned but fairly common meaning of the word "prospect" that has to do with sight: "as he climbed the mountain, a vast prospect opened up before him".

    Precede "Precede" means "to go before".
    Proceed "Proceed" means "to go on". Let your companion precede you through the door, then proceed to follow her.

    Precedence Although these words sound the same, they work differently. Precedence means "giving priority". The pop star is given precedence over the factory worker at the entrance to the dance club.
    Precedent "Precedent" is an example or standard or pattern.

    Premier These words are, respectively, the masculine and feminine forms of the word for "first" in French; but they have become differentiated in English. Only the masculine form is used as an adjective, as in "Tidy-Pool is the premier pool-cleaning firm in Orange County."
    Premiere "Premiere" as a verb is common in the arts and in show business ("the show premiered on PBS"), but it is less acceptable in other contexts ("the state government premiered its new welfare system"). Use "introduced," or, if real innovation is involved, "pioneered".

    Prescribe You recommend something when you prescribe it.
    Proscribe When you forbid it you proscribe it. The usually positive function of "pro-" confuses many people.

    Principal "Principal" is a noun and adjective referring to someone or something which is highest in rank or importance. (In a loan, the principal is the more substantial part of the money, the interest is--or should be--the lesser.)
    Principle "Principle" is only a noun, and has to do with law or doctrine: "The workers fought hard for the principle of collective bargaining."

    Prostate The gland men have is called the prostate.
    Prostrate "Prostrate" is an adjective meaning "lying face down".

    Reign A king or queen reigns (time in power).
    Rein You rein in a horse. The expression "to give rein" means to give in to an impulse as a spirited horse gives in to its impulse to gallop when you slacken the reins. Similarly, the correct expression is "free rein," not "free reign."

    Revue You can attend a musical revue (variety show) in a theatre.
    Review When you write up your reactions for a newspaper, you're writing a review.
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    Risqué
    Risky People unfamiliar with the French-derived word "risqué" ("slightly indecent") often write "risky" ("dangerous") by mistake. Bungee-jumping is risky, but nude bungee-jumping is risqué.

    Ravaging To ravage is to pillage, sack, or devastate. The only time "ravaging" is properly used is in phrases like "when the pirates had finished ravaging the town, they turned to ravishing the women." If a woman smashes your apartment up, she ravages it.
    Ravishing Which brings us to "ravish": meaning to rape, or rob violently. A trailer court can be ravaged by a storm (nothing is stolen, but a lot of damage is done) but not ravished. The crown jewels of Ruritania can be ravished (stolen using violence) without being ravaged (damaged). Originally, "raven" as a verb was synonymous with "ravish" in the sense of "to steal by force." One of its specialized meanings became "devour," as in "the lion ravened her prey." If a woman looks stunningly beautiful, she is ravishing.
    Ravenous By analogy, hungry people became "ravenous" (as hungry as beasts), and that remains the only common use of the word today. If a woman eats the whole platter of hors d'oeuvres you've set out for the party before the other guests come, she's ravenous.

    Sensual "Sensual" usually relates to physical desires and experiences, and often means "sexy." "Sensual" often has a slightly racy or even judgmental tone lacking in "sensuous."
    Sensuous "Sensuous" is more often used for esthetic pleasures, like "sensuous music." The two words do overlap a good deal. The leather seats in your new car may be sensuous; but if they turn you on, they might be sensual.

    Stationary When something is standing still, it's stationary.
    Stationery That piece of paper you write a letter on is stationery.

    Summery
    Summary When the weather is warm and summery and you don't feel like spending a lot of time reading that long report from the restructuring committee, just read the summary.

    Setup
    Set up Technical writers sometimes confuse "setup" as a noun ("check the setup") with the phrase "set up" ("set up the experiment").

    Troupe A group of performers is a troupe.
    Troop Any other group of people, military or otherwise, is a troop.

    Versus The "vs." in a law case like "Brown vs. The Board of Education" stands for Latin versus (meaning "against"). Don't confuse it with "verses" when describing other conflicts, like the upcoming football game featuring Oakesdale versus Pinewood.
    Verses Lines of poetry are called "verses".

    Warantee Confused by the spelling of "guarantee," people often misspell the related word "warrantee" rather than the correct "warranty." "Warrantee" is a rare legal term that means "the person to whom a warrant is made."
    Warranty Although "guarantee" can be a verb ("we guarantee your satisfaction"), "warranty" is not. The rarely used verb form is "to warrant."

    Wet Your Appetite
    Whet Your Appetite It is natural to think that something mouth-watering "wets your appetite," but actually the expression is "whet your appetite" to sharpen your appetite, as a whetstone sharpens a knife.

    Yolk The yellow center of an egg is its yolk.
    Yoke The link that holds two oxen together is a yoke. They are yoked.
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    great work sumit....
    can you attach it in printable format?
    Solid sometimes Liquid but never Gaseous.

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    Quote Originally Posted by aaamresh
    great work sumit....
    can you attach it in printable format?
    Was having difficulty in uploading the file few days back so that why posted it...Let me see if it gets uploaded this time
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    Quote Originally Posted by sumit2goody
    Quote Originally Posted by aaamresh
    great work sumit....
    can you attach it in printable format?
    Was having difficulty in uploading the file few days back so that why posted it...Let me see if it gets uploaded this time
    Not able to attach the file you can take printout of the webpage
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    Quote Originally Posted by sumit2goody
    Quote Originally Posted by sumit2goody
    Quote Originally Posted by aaamresh
    great work sumit....
    can you attach it in printable format?
    Was having difficulty in uploading the file few days back so that why posted it...Let me see if it gets uploaded this time
    Not able to attach the file you can take printout of the webpage
    no probz........its ok
    Solid sometimes Liquid but never Gaseous.

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    heavy works are performed by strength, and by perseverance.

    Similar words-- good job-- great idea

    Thanks.

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    This is an awesome Article sumit. Boosts onesvocan a couple of notches instantly
    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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    This is an awesome Article sumit. Boosts ones vocab a couple of notches instantly
    Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

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    some more from my side:-

    A)collision-crash into something

    collusion-secret or illegal activities.the policemen was in collusion with the black marketer and so turned a blind eye to his activities.

    B)complaint-expression of dissatisisfaction

    compliant-to be willing.

    C)confident-be sure of

    confidant-a person you can believe.

    D)endemic-something found regularly in aparticular place

    pandemic-outbreak of disease eg swine flu.

    E)euphemism-is the figure of speech,using soft words to describe harsh realities.

    Euphonious-sounding pleasant.

    F)historic-significant in history

    hysteric-state of uncontrolled emotions

    histrionic-Characteristic of acting or a stage performance; often affected

    G)Imaginary_not real

    Imaginative-use of one's imagination

    H)Intervene-to stop

    Intercede-to speak in favor of

    I)indentation-cut or mark on edge

    indenture-type of contract (forced labour)

    j)sententious-trying to sound important by moral judgements

    sentient-able to see feel things through senses

    K)pillory-criticize someone in public

    pillage-stealing things

    l)pedantic-over scrupulous,hyper critical

    pedagogic-teaching methods.

    M)roster-the list of those available on job

    rooster-cock.

    i hope it helps.

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    Quote Originally Posted by shrilekhaj View Post
    some more from my side:-

    A)collision-crash into something

    collusion-secret or illegal activities.the policemen was in collusion with the black marketer and so turned a blind eye to his activities.

    B)complaint-expression of dissatisisfaction

    compliant-to be willing.

    C)confident-be sure of

    confidant-a person you can believe.

    D)endemic-something found regularly in aparticular place

    pandemic-outbreak of disease eg swine flu.

    E)euphemism-is the figure of speech,using soft words to describe harsh realities.

    Euphonious-sounding pleasant.

    F)historic-significant in history

    hysteric-state of uncontrolled emotions

    histrionic-Characteristic of acting or a stage performance; often affected

    G)Imaginary_not real

    Imaginative-use of one's imagination

    H)Intervene-to stop

    Intercede-to speak in favor of

    I)indentation-cut or mark on edge

    indenture-type of contract (forced labour)

    j)sententious-trying to sound important by moral judgements

    sentient-able to see feel things through senses

    K)pillory-criticize someone in public

    pillage-stealing things

    l)pedantic-over scrupulous,hyper critical

    pedagogic-teaching methods.

    M)roster-the list of those available on job

    rooster-cock.

    i hope it helps.
    thanks!!!

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