adj. intended for or understood only by a particular group
adj. not publicly disclosed; confidential
The esoteric ideas of the cult failed to enlighten many outsiders.
adj. insensitive; having no feeling
The callous remark upset the entire family.
adj. not distinguishable between male and female
The names Sam is androgynous because it could stand for Samantha or Samual.
adj. unusually quick development or maturation, especially in intelligence
The child's precocious understanding of calculus stunned his teachers.
n. the medieval study of transforming lead into gold
Alchemy is in many ways related to the chemistry we study today.
v. to refer to another concept indirectly
She would occasionally allude to a summer house, though nobody knew exactly where it was.
n. selfless concern for others
Many charities were formed thanks to Rajiv's altruism and generosity.
n. indifference or confused feelings
The bride's ambivalence towards the color of the roses meant the groom had to decide.
v. to make better
The new medicine ameliorated her condition rather quickly.
adj. open to suggestion or criticism
A good manager is amenable to his employee's new ideas.
adj. overly instructive or preachy
He may mean well, but Pat's efforts to help come across as fussy and didactic.
n. dedication to pursuing pleasure
Jake's hedonism became apparent when he quit his job rather than cancel his trip to the Bahamas.
adj. blocking all light
adj. hard to understand
The windows became so dirty they were almost opaque.
adj. more than necessary; unnecessary
The student's essay was full of superfluous phrases that needed to be deleted.
Since they were not allowed to speak, the couple exchanged surreptitious glances from across the room.
adj. related to a relationship that is beneficial for all involved
The whale and the small fish that cling to its body have a symbiotic relationship.
adj. implied or unspoken
There was a tacit agreement between the two companies that neither would expand into the other's city.
v. to make worse
The children's screaming exacerbated their father's headache.
v. to clear of blame or guilt
Though the defendant had clearly done something wrong, the court had no choice but to exonerate her on the present charges.
v. to speed up
For an extra fee, the post office can expedite your package's delivery.
adj. made up on the spot, ad-libbed
To be a news anchor, she would have to improve her extemporaneous speaking skills.
v. to get around an obstacle
She managed to circumvent security and approached her favorite actor backstage.
adj. related to jokes
The boy was popular with his classmates due to his cheerful, jocular nature.
adj. concise and relevant
Satya's pithy keynote speech was more enlightening than the endless lectures that had preceded it.
n. the quality of being frank, sincere, or impartial in expression
Giorgio was known for his candor, so it surprised no one when he began to talk at length about his love life.
n. a hidden place, a secret storage
n. a place for valuables
The bomb shelter had a cache of resources capable of supporting the family.
adj. succinct, curt
Your terse apology does not even begin to give an adequate explanation for your behavior.
adj. uninteresting due to overuse; hackneyed
Though some may find Valentine's Day chocolates trite, I look forward to every box I get.
v. to make vague, unclear statements
The mayor equivocated when confronted about his use of public funds.
n. unpleasant, discordant sounds
The orchestra's first attempt to play together was a cacophony of jarring notes.