English Knowledge - SPLessons

Collocations Examples | Set Of Words

Chapter 34

SPLessons 5 Steps, 3 Clicks
5 Steps - 3 Clicks

Collocations Examples | Set Of Words

shape Introduction

A Collocation is two or more words that often go together. Ex: Heavy Rain is more meaningful than Big rain or Strong Rain.


Collocation primarily refers to how words group together or form relationships. Strong collocations are where the link between the two words is quite fixed and restricted.[Example: Heavy Rain. Heavy cannot be replaced with any other word to measure the intensity of rainfall]. Weak collocations are where a word can collocate with many other words. [ Example: Big House, Large bottle. Big and Large can be used with other words and can also be replaced. Large House, Big Bottle etc.]


Technology Example: A powerful computer is preferred over a strong computer. Phraseological collocations vs Idioms: An idiom’s meaning is derived from its convention as a stand-in for something else and collocation is a mere popular composition. The ability to use English effectively involves an awareness of a distinctive feature of the language known as collocation. Collocation is a means by which two or more words go together, in speech or writing.


Collocations can be broadly categorized as: adjective+noun, noun+noun (such as collective nouns), verb+noun, adverb+adjective, verbs+prepositional phrase (phrasal verbs), and verb+adverb.


shape Examples

Type Examples





1. Verb Collocations
Ask a favour
Break a code
Catch a ball
Do a course
Get a call





2. Adverb + Adjective
Fully aware
Happily married
Highly controversial
Highly effective
Highly probable





3. Adverb + Adverb
Only just
Pretty well
Quite a lot
Quite enough
Quite often





4. Adverb + Verb
Badly damage
Deeply rooted
Never knew
Quite agree








5. Adjective + Noun
Big Surprise
Big Brother
Big Deal
Big Money
Big Decision
Big Mistake
Big Dreamer
Big Improvement








6. Adjective + Preposition
Comfortable with
Concerned with,
Nasty of
Nervous of
Furious about
Guilty about
Successful In
Polite In








7. Noun + Noun
Comfortable with
Core values
Corporate finance
Cottage industry
Creation science
Credit bureau
Credit union





8. Verb + Noun
Go on a date
Go on a picnic
Go on foot
Have a fight
Have a game


















7. Verb + Preposition
Allow for
Apologize for
Ask for
Object to
Pray to
Prefer to
to wait for
to look for
to look at
to listen to
to pay for
to ask for
to rely on
to be responsible for
to be interested in
to depend on
to be mad at





8. Adverb + Adverb
Only just
Pretty well
Quite a lot
Quite enough
Quite often





























9. Verb + Adverb
Go far
Go first
Go upstairs
Guess correctly
Hit hard,
Judge harshly
Know well
badly damage
badly hurt/injure
badly need
closely examine
completely forget
completely destroy
deeply regret
distinctly remember
firmly believe
firmly reject
flatly refuse
freely admit
fully appreciate
fully recover
fully understand
greatly admire
hotly deny
rise steadily
seriously doubt
seriously think/consider
sincerely hope
strongly advise
strongly criticize
totally agree
thoroughly enjoy
thoroughly inspect





9. Noun + Preposition
Date with
Dealings with
Difficulty with
Debate on
Information on
Hold on


shape Dictionary

Word Collocation Example
Abase (v.) to lower in rank,
office,
prestige,
or esteem
I wouldn’t abase myself by getting into an argument with him.
Noun: abasement.
Abdicate (v.) to cast of discard;
to relinquish
He abdicated all responsibility for the work to his elder son.
Noun: abdication.
Aberrant (adj.) straying from the right or normal way;
deviating from the usual or natural type;
atypical
His aberrant behavior after his failure worried his friends.
Nouns: aberrant (the person who behaves exhibits aberrant behavior) aberrance; aberrancy.
Abeyance (n.) a state of temporary suspension or inactivity The plan was held in abeyance till the funds could be arranged.
Abnegation (n.) a denial;
self-denial;
Abnegation of responsibility is bringing with it the anarchy, chaos and violence in society.
Abrogate (v.) to cancel by authority The treaty can be abrogated only by the President himself.
Abstemious (adj.) marked by restraint especially in the consumption of food or alcohol The hermit led an abstemious way of life.
Abstruse (adj.) hard to understand;
deep;
recondite
The concept was too abstruse for the average student to grasp.
Acerbic (adj.) tasting sours;
harsh in language or temper
The opposition party’s acerbic comments about the Prime Minister was met with wide disapproval.
Acquiesce (v.) to agree without protest The students acquiesced to the fee hike even though they were opposed to it.
Acrimony (n.) harsh or biting sharpness especially of words,
manner,
or disposition
There was too much acrimony between the brothers for the dispute to be solved amicably.
Adjure (v.) to command solemnly;
to urge or advise earnestly;
beg
The judge adjured the witness to speak honestly and truthfully.
Adroit (adj.) having or showing skill,
cleverness,
or resourcefulness in handling situations;
clever;
dexterous
His adroit handling of an awkward situation won him praise from everyone.
Aesthetic (adj.) of,
relating to,
or dealing with the beautiful aesthetic theories;
artistic a work of aesthetic value;
pleasing in appearance aesthetic features
His review made one wonder what kind of aesthetic taste the critic had.
Aggrandize (v.) to make more powerful;
increase;
enlarge.
He exploited the situation to aggrandize himself.
Alacrity (n.) promptness in response;
cheerful readiness
She accepted the invitation with alacrity.
Alleviate (v.) to relieve;
lessen;
to make (as suffering) more bearable.
Her sympathy alleviated his distress.
Altruism (n.) unselfish regard for or devotion to the welfare of There are certainly people who take up causes that help people they have never met with pure altruism.
Ambivalent (adj.) simultaneous and contradictory attitudes or feelings (as attraction and repulsion) toward;
continual fluctuation (as between one thing and it’s opposite);
uncertainty as to which approach to follow
Many parents are ambivalent about giving their child a cell phone, worried that their child will spend all their time chatting to their friends.
Ameliorate (v.) to improve or make better There are several biologically plausible reasons why zinc may help in ameliorating symptoms of the common cold.
Anachronism (n.) a chronological misplacing of persons,
events,
objects,
or customs in regard to each other.
The film about Ice Age had an anachronism in one of the frames with a car in the background.
Anoint (v.) to smear with ointment or apply an oily substance;
choose by or as if by divine intervention
She has anointed the head of the Christian fundamentalist group.
Anomaly (n.) an oddity,
inconsistency;
a deviation from the norm
The defence lawyer pointed out a glaring anomaly in the evidence.
Antagonism (n.) hostility;
opposition
The antagonism was created by a misunderstanding.
Antipathy (n.) a strong dislike or repugnance She had an antipathy toward meat as she was a vegetarian.
Apocalypse (n.) one of the Jewish and Christian writings of 200 BC to AD 150 marked by pseudonymity,
symbolic imagery,
and the expectation of an imminent cosmic cataclysm in which God destroys the ruling powers of evil and raises the righteous to life in a messianic kingdom;
revelation;
something viewed as a prophetic revelation;
Armageddon
Sciencefiction movies seem to relish apocalyptic visions—In the nuclear age, we live in the shadow of the apocalypse.
Apocryphal (adj.) counterfeit;
of doubtful authorship or authenticity
Wildly apocryphal rumours about terrorist attacks raced through the city.
Arcane (adj.) obscure;
mysterious;
understood only by a few
The old men found the technical consultant’s explanation of the problem arcane.
Archetype (n.) original pattern or model;
prototype;
a perfect example
Frankenstein, Dracula, Dr. Jekyll, and Mr. Hyde are the archetypes that have influenced many horror stories.
Assiduous (adj.) carefully attentive She tended her garden with assiduous attention.
Assuage (v.) to relieve;
ease;
make less severe
Medication should assuage the pain.
Attenuate (v.) to thin out to weaken Medicine attenuated the fever’s effect.
Austere (adj.) having a stern look;
having strict self-discipline
Gandhiji led an austere life.
Avarice (n.) excessive or insatiable desire for wealth or gain;
greediness
His avarice for money made him work long hours and without rest.
Azure (adj.) the clear blue colour of the sky The azure sky made the picnic day perfect.

Word Collocation Example
Baleful (adj.) harmful,
malign,
deadly or pernicious in influence;
foreboding evil
The Florida eagles have a fierce baleful look.
Banal (adj.) trite;
without freshness or originality
This is the hundredth
Hindi film that I have seen with the banal tale of unrequited love.
Baneful (adj.) deadly or causing distress;
seriously harmful
He was ruined by the baneful habit of cocaine.
Bastion (n.) a fortified place or strong defence The strength of the bastion saved the soldiers inside of it.
Batten (v.) to grow fat;
to feed gluttonously;
to grow prosperous especially
at the expense of another
Politicians batten themselves on the helpless.
Bellicose (adj.) quarrelsome;
warlike invited back again.
The bellicose guest would not be
Beneficent (adj.) doing or producing good:
especially,
performing acts of kindness and charity
He is a beneficent person, always helping people in need.
Berate (v.) scold;
reproach;
criticize
The child was berated by the parents for telling lies.
Bilateral (adj.) having two sides;
affecting reciprocally two nations or parties
The bilateral agreement between the neighboring countries prevented war between them at all times.
Blasphemous (adj.) irreligious;
away from acceptable standards;
speaking ill of using profane language
The upper-class parents thought that it was blasphemous for their son to marry a waitress.
Blatant (adj.) obvious;
unmistakable;
crude;
vulgar
She broke down at his words uttered with blatant disregard for a person’s feelings.
Bode (v.) foretell;
to indicate by signs;
presage
The controversy about who should be chief bodes ill for both of the candidates.
Boor (n.) a rude person The not invited, the boor turned up for the party.
Broach (v.) to open up (a subject) for discussion,
to make known for the first time
We broached our plans for the new year.
Brusque (adj.) abrupt in manner or speech His brusque answer was neither acceptable nor polite.
Bucolic (adj.) relating to or typical of rural life The bucolic setting inspired the artist.
Burgeon (v.) to grow or develop quickly Many people view the quickly burgeoning population of the cities as a problem.
Burlesque (n.) a literary or dramatic work that seeks to ridicule by means of grotesque exaggeration or comic imitation;
a mockery
The antics of the defense attorneys turned the trial into a burlesque of justice.
Burly (adj.) strong;
bulky;
muscular
Her bodyguard was a burly man.

Word Collocation Example
Cache (n.) a hiding place for goods The cache of arms was hidden under the bed.
Cacophony (n.) a harsh and discordant sounds;
dissonance
Rock music was termed by his grandfather as mere cacophony.
Cajole (v.) to persuade with flattery or gentle urging;
to deceive with soothing words or false promises
The contractor resorted to lies in order to cajole the disgruntled workers back to work.
Callow (adj.) lacking adult sophistication;
immature
Although the girl could be considered an adult, the action was very callow.
Calumny (n.) a misrepresentation intended to blacken another’s;
slander
It is pure calumny to say that the tribal worship their idols in a way any different from ours.
Canard (n.) false or unfounded report or story The ruling coalition is trying to prove that the scam was a canard contrived by the opposition.
Caprice (n.) a sudden,
impulsive,
and seemingly unmotivated notion or action;
a sudden usually unpredictable condition,
change,
or series of changes
I’m tired of the old man and his caprices.
Captious (adj.) disposed to find fault A captious attitude often causes difficulties in a relationship.
Castigate (v.) o punish through public criticism The Minister castigated the bureaucrat for the delay in the implementation of the scheme.
Cataclysm (n.) flood,
deluge,
catastrophe;
an event that brings great changes
The stress of puberty is the most intense natural cataclysm that a growing child has to undergo.
Catharsis (n.) a purging or relieving of the body or mind The city may be in mourning, but the numerous prayers and candlelight vigils help provide some emotional catharsis.
Censure (v.) to criticize or disapprove of He was censured by his employers for the impolite behaviour with a client.
Chafe (v.) to annoy,
to irritate;
to wear away or make sore by rubbing
His constant teasing chafed her.
Chagrin (n.) disquietude or distress of mind caused by humiliation,
disappointment,
or failure
To her chagrin. the party ended just as she arrived.
Chicanery (n.) trickery or deception The swindler seemed to be welltrained in chicanery.
Chimera (n.) an impossible fancy Perhaps he saw a flying saucer, but perhaps it was only a chimera.
Circumspect (adj.) careful considering all circumstances and possible consequences;
prudent
After the first failure they became circumspect in all their decisions.
Cogent (adj.) appealing forcibly to the mind or reason convincing The lawyer made a cogent and compelling presentation of the case in favour of the defendant.
Cogitate (v.) to think hard;
ponder;
meditate
It is necessary to cogitate on decisions which affect life goals.
Cognitive (adj.) possessing the power to think;
capable of perception
An estimated 23% of people over 65 years of age suffer from mild cognitive impairment.
Cohesion (n.) the act of holding together;
unity
The staff lacked cohesion in pursuing the common goals of the company.
Commiserate (v.) to show sympathy for When I lost, she commiserated over my failure.
Complacent (adj.) content;
self-satisfied;
smug
He had become complacent after years of success.
Complaisance (n.) the quality of being agreeable or eager to please The complaisant waiter was in no hum for us to leave.
Conceit (n.) an exaggerated personal opinion The film star’s belief that he was the most popular actor in the industry was pure conceit.
Conciliatory (adj.) reconciling,
appeasing
The two neighboring nations never seem to find any conciliatory ground between them.
Conclave (n.) any private meeting or closed assembly The conclave was to meet outside the city.
Connoisseur (n.) expert;
authority (usually refers to a wine or food expert)
Let him choose the wine—he’s the connoisseur.
Consecrate (v.) to declare sacred;
to dedicate
The park was consecrated to the memory of the missing soldiers.
Consternation (n.) amazement or dismay that hinders or throws into confusion The two friends stared at each other in consternation, and neither knew what to do.
Contiguous (adj.) being in actual contact: touching along a boundary or at a point Maharashtra, Gujarat, and Rajasthan are contiguous states.
Contravene (v.) to act contrary to;
to oppose or contradict
The management cannot frame rules that contravene the law of the state.
Contrite (adj.) regretful;
sorrowful;
having repentance
The contrite man apologized profusely.
Conundrum (n.) a puzzle or riddle I spent two hours trying to figure out the conundrum.
Corroborate (v.) to support with evidence;
confirm
The account given by the accused was not corroborated by the statement of the witnesses.
Covenant (n.) a binding and solemn agreement With the exchange of vows,
the covenant was complete.
Cower (v.) to huddle and tremble The hostages cowered in their seats.
Culpable (adj.) deserving blame;
guilty
She was the one who committed the crime but he was culpable also.
Curmudgeon (n.) an ill-tempered person The curmudgeon asked the children not to play near his house.
Cursory (adj.) rapidly and often superficially performed;
hasty
A cursory reading of the report convinced him about her involvement in the crime.
Cynic (n.) a faultfinding captious critic;
one who believes that human conduct is motivated wholly by self-interest
A cynic might see this charity drive as simply a ploy to make us part with more money.

Word Collocation Example
Dauntless (adj.) fearless;
not discouraged
The dauntless firefighters rescued the child.
Debacle (n.) disaster;
collapse;
a rout
The new regulations by the SEBI are meant to prevent another debacle in the stock markets.
Debase (v.) to make lower in quality People from the North complain that people in Mumbai have debased the Hindi language.
Debauchery (n.) extreme indulgence in sensuality It suits you so badlyall this debauchery, dissipation, and the rest of it.
Debilitate (v.) to enfeeble; to wear out The prolonged illness debilitated him to the point that he was unable to walk.
Decadence (n.) a decline in morals or art;
implies a reaching and passing the peak of development and a turn downward with a consequent loss in vitality or energy
Love of luxury as a sign of cultural decadence.
Decry (v.) to denounce or condemn openly The critics decried the film for its lack of technical skill.
Deferential (adj.) respect and esteem due a superior or an elder;
affected or ingratiating regard for another’s wishes
The student was polite and deferential while speaking to his professor.
Deleterious (adj.) harmful;
hurtful;
noxious
Deleterious fumes escaped from the overturned truck carrying chemicals.
Delineate (v.) to outline;
to describe
the Minister delineated the steps taken by the government to control prices.
Demur (v.; n.) to delay, hesitate She hated air travel, so when the subject of the vacation came up she demurred.
Deprecate (v.) to express disapproval of;
to protest against
The environmentalists deprecated the cutting down of trees for the new road.
Desultory (adj.) moving in a random,
directionless manner
Most of the audience felt that his speech was desultory.
Determinate (adj.) distinct limits The new laws were very determinate as far as what was allowed and what was not allowed.
Dexterous (adj.) skillful,
quick mentally or physically;
clever
The batsman showed dexterous ingenuity with the bat.
Diatribe (n.) a bitter or abusive speech Graceless in loss, he burst into a diatribe against his rivals when he lost the championship.
Didactic (adj.) instructive;
dogmatic;
preachy
Our teacher’s didactic technique boosted our scores.
Dilettante (n.) an admirer of the fine arts;
a dabbler;
an amateur
Though she played the piano like a professional, she was merely a dilettante.
Disarray (n.) (state of) disorder The thief left the house in disarray.
Discreet (adj.) showing good judgment in conduct;
prudent
I told her about my affair because I could trust her to be discreet.
Discrete (adj.) separate;
individually distinct;
composed of distinct parts
these are two discrete issues; they need to be discussed separately.
Disdain (n.) intense dislike;
look down upon;
scorn
The problem with my friend is that if I don’t agree with him, he shows great disdain for me.
Disingenuous (adj.) not frank or candid;
deceivingly simple
His answers are always disingenuous; you cannot make out what he really means.
Disinterested (adj.) neutral;
unbiased
His decision will be fair to everyone as he is the most disinterested party in this controversy.
Disparage (v.) to belittle;
undervalue;
to discredit
She disparaged her student’s efforts in the event when she took the credit for its success all for herself.
Disparate (adj.) unequal;
dissimilar;
different
He and his poor friend come from starkly disparate backgrounds.
Dissemble (v.) to pretend;
to feign;
to conceal by pretence
The man dissembled his assets to avoid paying taxes.
Distension (n.) inflation or extension The wooden table distended and lost shape after being left in the rain.
Dither (v.) to act indecisively; a confused condition She dithered every time she had to make a decision.
Dogmatic (adj.) stubborn;
biased;
opinionated
When the professor became too dogmatic in his speech, the students began to leave his lectures.
Dormant (adj.) as if asleep They say that only one-third of one’s vocabulary is active; two-third is dormant.
Doughty (adj.) brave and strong The doughty fireman saved the woman’s life.
Duplicity (n.) deception She broke up with him for his duplicity.
Duress (n.) imprisonment;
the use of threats
The convict pleaded in the court that his confession to the police was made under duress.

Word Collocation Example
Ebullience (n.) an overflowing of high spirits;
effervescence
She emanated ebullience as she learned about her first rank in the exam.
Eclectic (adj.) selecting what appears to be best in various doctrines, methods, or styles;
composed of elements drawn from various sources
To be good in reading Comprehension your reading should be eclectic.
Edify (v.) to build or establish;
to instruct and improve the mind;
enlighten
The students found their philosophy professor’s lectures to be edifying.
Efface (v.) to erase;
to make inconspicuous
Daylight effaced the stars.
Effrontery (n.) arrogance The effrontery of the young man was offensive.
Effusive (adj.) pouring out or forth;
overflowing
The effusive currents rush through the broken dam.
Egress (n.) a way out;
exit
The doorway provided an egress from the chamber.
Ellipsis (n.) omission of words that would make the meaning clear The accidental ellipsis confused all those who heard the speech.
Elucidate (v.) to make clear;
to explain
The first sentence of the chapter elucidated its purpose.
Elusive (adj.) hard to catch The thief proved to be too elusive for the police, they could never catch him.
Emanate (v.) to emit Thick smoke emanated from the building that was on fire.
Embellish (v.) to make beautiful with ornamentation;
decorate
His fanciful account that embellishes the true story.
Encomium (n.) formal expression of high praise The actor’s speech was along encomium for his producer and director as he received the award.
Encumber (v.) to hold back;
to hinder;
to burden,
weigh down
His was a life that has always been encumbered with responsibilities.
Endemic (adj.) native to a particular area; constantly present in a particular country or locality The endemic fauna was of great interest to the anthropologist.
Enervate (v.) to weaken;
to deprive of nerve or strength
The sickness enervates its victims completely.
Engender (v.) to cause to exist;
produce
The group attempted to engender changes to the law.
Enigmatic (adj.) baffling The enigmatic murder puzzled the detective.
Ennui (n.) boredom;
apathy
Ennui set in when the children had broken all the toys.
Ephemeral (adj.) very short-lived;
lasting only a short time
His happiness was always ephemeral as he lived alone; it was soon replaced by boredom.
Epicure (n.) a person who has good taste in food and drink As an epicure,
he visits only the best restaurants in town.
Epitome (n.) model;
typical or ideal example
The student chosen to represent the school was the epitome of dedication and excellence.
Equivocal (adj.) doubtful;
uncertain
His equivocal behaviour increased the uneasiness.
Erudite (adj.) learned,
having a wide knowledge acquired through reading
He was erudite scholar in philosophy.
Eschew (v.) to shun;
to avoid
Gandhiji exhorted people to eschew violence.
Esoteric (adj.) understood by only a chosen few;
confidential
The esoteric language was only known by the select group.
Evanescent (adj.) vanishing quickly;
dissipating like a vapour
The evanescent mirage could only be seen at a certain angle.
Exculpate (v.) to free from guilt Though he was innocent he did not try to exculpate from the crime he was charged with.
Exhume (v.) to unearth;
to reveal
The scientists exhumed the body from the grave to test the body’s DNA.
Exigent (adj.) a situation calling for immediate attention The exigent request for more assistance was answered quickly.
Exonerate (v.) to declare or prove blameless Hopefully, the judge will exonerate you of any wrongdoing.
Expedient (adj.) convenient in obtaining a result;
guided by self-interest
To drop the case against the minister was a politically expedient decision.
Expedite (v.) to hasten the action of We can expedite the transaction if we tell them it is an emergency.

Word Collocation Example
Facetious (adj.) joking in an awkward or improper manner When I called you a fool, I’m sure you realized I was only being very facetious.
Fallible (adj.) liable to be mistaken or erroneous The sick man kept repeating that he was in the hands of God, not fallible human doctors.
Fanatic (n.) enthusiast;
extremist
The terrorist group was comprised of fanatics.
Fastidious (adj.) difficult to please;
dainty
The fastidious girl would not accept any offers as suitable.
Fathom (v.) to understand It was difficult to fathom why he sold his business.
Fatuous (adj.) lacking in seriousness;
vain and silly
This is going to sound completely fatuous, but it’s my honest answer.
Fecund (adj.) productive;
fertile;
prolific
Zebrafish are highly fecund each female is capable of laying 200 eggs per clutch.
Feign (v.) pretend It is not uncommon for a child to feign illness in order to stay home from school.
Ferret (v.) to force out of hiding;
to search for
The police will ferret the fugitive out of his hiding place.
Fetish (n.) anything to which one gives excessive devotion;
fixation
She has made a fetish of cleanliness, cleaning her house several times a day.
Finesse (n.) the ability to handle situations with skill and diplomacy She managed that situation with great finesse.
Flaccid (adj.) lacking firmness His muscles have become completely flaccid.
Flagrant (adj.) glaringly wrong The flagrant foul during the game was apparent to everyone.
Flamboyant (adj.) being too showy or ornate They were all very flamboyant women, very well dressed with lots of jewellery.
Flippant (adj.) talkative;
disrespectful
The teacher became upset with the flippant answer from the student.
Flux (n.) a flow;
a continual change
Fashion is always in a state of flux.
Foray (v.) to raid for spoil;
a venture or an initial attempt outside one’s usual area
An actor’s foray into politics.
Forbearance (n.) patience;
selfrestraint
He exhibited remarkable forbearance when his boss insulted him in public.
Forensic (adj.) belonging to,
used in,
or suitable to courts of judicature or to public discussion and debate;
argumentative;
rhetorical;
relating to or dealing with the application of scientific knowledge to legal problems forensic medicine,
forensic science,
a forensic pathologist and forensic experts
The forensic squad dealt with the legal investigation.
Fortitude (n.) firm courage;
strength
He showed great fortitude during his long illness.
Fortuitous (adj.) happening accidentally His fortuitous meeting with his friend proved lucky for him.
Fractious (adj.) rebellious;
apt to quarrel
Fractious siblings aggravate their parents.
Frenetic (adj.) frenzied The police received a frenetic call from the scene of the crime.
Forward (adj.) not willing to yield or comply with what is reasonable The executive had to deal with aforward peer who was becoming increasingly difficult.
Fulminate (v.) to blame,
denunciate
The social activist in his speech fulminated against political chicanery.
Furtive (adj.) secretive;
sly
He cast a furtive glance in her direction.

Word Collocation Example
Gaffe (n.) a blunder Calling his fiancée by the wrong name was a huge gaffe.
Gainsay (v.) to speak against;
to contradict;
to deny
During the group discussion, he tried to gainsay me, but I was well prepared with facts.
Galvanize (v.) to stimulate as if by electric shock;
startle;
excite
The group is trying to galvanize support for the victimized woman.
Gamut (n.) a complete range;
any complete musical scale
SRK’s roles in films run the entire gamut of villain to superhero to comedian.
Garish (adj.) gaudy,
showy
The gold fixtures seemed garish.
Garner (v.) to gather up and store;
to collect
The squirrels garnered nuts for the winter.
Garrulous (adj.) extremely talkative or wordy He became more garrulous after drinking a couple of beer.
Gauche (adj.) awkward;
lacking social grace
Would it be gauche of me to ask her how old she is?
Gauntlet (n.) a protective glove The gauntlet saved the man’s hand from being burned in the fire. (An open challenge (as to combat)—used in phrases like throw down the gauntlet).
Genre (adj.) designating a type of film or book The genre of the book is popular science.
Germane (adj.) pertinent;
related;
to the point
My personal opinion isn’t germane to our discussion of the facts of the case.
Gerrymander (v.) to gain advantage by manipulating unfairly To gerrymander during negotiations is considered unfair.
Glib (adj.) smooth and slippery;
speaking or spoken in a smooth manner
The salesman was so glib that the customers failed to notice the defects in the product.
Glutton (n.) overeater He is such a glutton that he ate the whole cake.
Gourmand (n.) on who is excessively fond of eating and drinking He is such a gourmand that he vacationed to Europe every year just for the wine.
Grandiose (adj.) magnificent;
flamboyant
He was always full of grandiose ideas.
Gregarious (adj.) fond of the company of others She is outgoing and gregarious.
Guile (n.) slyness;
deceit
By using his guile, the gambler almost always won at the card table.
Gullible (adj.) easily fooled They sell overpriced items to gullible tourists.

Word Collocation Example
Hackneyed (adj.) lacking in freshness or originality;
commonplace;
trite
It may be hackneyed, but it is true that the harder you work, the luckier you get.
Haggard (adj.) untamed;
having a worn look
She looked tired and haggard after the illness.
Halcyon (adj.) tranquil;
happy
I keep remembering the halcyon years of growing up in a village.
Hapless (adj.) unlucky;
unfortunate
The injured and hapless captain could not lead the team to victory.
Harangue (v.) a speech addressed to a public assembly;
a ranting speech or writing
The chief guest launched into a long harangue about the evils of pop culture.
Harbinger (n.) forerunner;
indication
The new year was seen as a harbinger of better times.
Haughty (adj.) proud of oneself and scornful of others The haughty ways she displayed her work turned off her peers.
Hedonistic (adj.) living for pleasure Their vacation to Switzerland turned to be hedonistic adventure.
Hegemony (n.) dominance,
especially of one nation over others
Colonization was an example of imposing British hegemony over other regions.
Heresy (n.) opinion contrary to popular belief or ideology The fact that the earth is round was considered heresy at one time.
Hiatus (n.) interval;
break;
period of rest
Summer vacation provided a much-needed hiatus for the students.
Hierarchy (n.) a system of persons or things arranged according to rank When I joined the company I was at the bottom of the hierarchy.
Homily (n.) solemn moral talk;
sermon
We listened to another one of his homilies about the value of public service.
Hubris (n.) arrogance His failure in life was brought on by his hubris.
Histrionic (adj.) theatrical She had a tendency to throw things, bang doors, and other histrionic displays of temper.
Holocaust (n.) destruction by fire We live in the shadow of a nuclear holocaust.
Horticulture (n.) the science and art of growing fruits,
vegetables,
flowers,
or ornamental plants
Women constitute the majority of workers in African export horticulture.
Humane (adj.) marked by kindness or consideration It is not humane to treat animals that way.
Husbandry (n.) frugality;
thrift;
also agriculture
In accordance with his practice of good husbandry, he never buys anything on credit.
Hybrid (n.) anything of mixed origin The flower was a hybrid of three different flowers.
Hyperbole (n.) an exaggeration,
not to be taken seriously
The snake in the garden was 20 feet long, he said with a measure of hyperbole.
Hypochondriac (n.) person unduly worried about his health;
worrier without cause about illness
My brother is a real hypochondriac. Every time he reads about some new disease, he thinks he has it

Word Collocation Example
Iconoclast (n.) one who destroys revered images;
an attacker of cherished beliefs
His criticism of the government, religion, and custom made him an iconoclast.
Idiosyncrasy (n.) any personal peculiarity,
mannerism
Her tendency to bite her nails is an idiosyncrasy.
Imbue (v.) to soak or stain;
permeate
The values that he had imbued from education remained with him all his life.
Immaculate (adj.) perfectly clean;
correct;
pure
He always dressed immaculately.
Imminent (adj.) likely to happen without delay The clouds signalled the imminent rains
Immutable (adj.) unchangeable;
permanent
Natures laws are immutable.
Impasse (n.) a situation tat has no solution or escape;
deadlock
The arbitrator is necessary to break the impasse in the negotiations.
Impassive (adj.) showing no emotion The culprit remained impassive throughout the trial.
Impecunious (adj.) poor;
having no money
They were impecunious and did not buy any gift for the host.
Impede (v.) to stop the progress of;
obstruct
The rain impeded the work on the building.
Impenitent (adj.) without regret,
shame,
or remorse
His impenitent remark proved that he did not regret the crime.
Imperious (adj.) arrogant;
urgent
Her imperious manner cost her all her friends.
Imperturbable (adj.) calm;
not easily excited
He remained imperturbable throughout the argument.
Impervious (adj.) impenetrable;
not allowing anything to pass through;
unaffected
The politician wore a vest that was impervious to bullets.
Impetuous (adj.) moving with great force;
done with little thought
The young man had an impetuous temperament.
Impiety (n.) irreverence toward God;
lack of respect
Gandhiji considered all forms of violence as impiety.
Implacable (adj.) unwilling to be pacified or appeased She was implacable after she heard the news about her friend’s accident.
Imprecate (v.) to pray for evil;
to invoke a curse
Witches are known to imprecate people through a curse.
Impromptu (adj.) without preparation His witty impromptu dialogues entertained everyone.
Improvident (adj.) not providing for the future An improvident person may end up destitute in latter life.
Impudent (adj.) disrespectful and shameless Impudent actions caused him to be unpopular.
Impugn (v.) to attack with words;
to question the truthfulness or integrity
He impugned his rival’s character.
Imputation (n.) to charge,
to attribute a fault or misconduct to another
I resent the imputation that I am nice to her because she has money.
Inadvertent (adj.) not on purpose;
unintentional
It was an inadvertent error on my part.
Inchoate (adj.) not yet fully formed;
rudimentary
The outline of the thesis was the inchoate form of a very complex theory.
Incisive (adj.) getting to the heart of things;
to the point
She’s known for her incisive mind and quick wit.
Incognito (adj.) unidentified;
disguised;
concealed
The actor preferred to travel incognito.
Incredulous (adj.) sceptical Many people were incredulous that the investigating agency could not identify the murderer.
Inculcate (v.) to impress upon the mind,
as by insistent urging
A mother tries to inculcate good habits in her child.
Incursion (n.) an entry into,
especially when not desired
The Airforce does not allow any incursion into the country’s air space.
Indelible (adj.) that which cannot be blotted out or erased The stories that his grandmother told him left an indelible impression on his mind.
Indemnify (v.) to insure against or pay for loss or damage It is important to indemnify your valuables with an insurance company.
Indict (v.) charge with a crime The court indicted him for theft.
Indigence (n.) the condition of being poor The family’s indigence was obvious in the way they lived.
Indigenous (adj.) native to a region;
inborn or innate
The plants are indigenous to the Deccan Plateau.
Indignant (adj.) expressing anger to an injustice He was indignant over the way he was treated.
Indolent (adj.) lazy;
inactive
The indolent man slept all day.
Indomitable (adj.) not easily discouraged or defeated Though injured his indomitable spirit helped him win the match, even against unbearable pain.
Indubitable (adj.) unquestionable;
sure
The student was the indubitable leader of the group.
Ineluctable (adj.) something inevitable The sick man was preparing for the ineluctable death.
Ingenious (adj.) clever,
resourceful
His ingenious ideas helped to market the product well.
Ingenuous (adj.) showing innocent or childlike simplicity and candidness;
lacking craft or subtlety
The child’s ingenuous admission of guilt touched everyone’s heart.
Ingratiate (v.) to bring into one’s good graces The man was hoping to ingratiate himself with his boss by enquiring after his children.
Inimical (adj.) hostile,
unfriendly
When I mentioned her boyfriend, she gave me an inimical stare.
Iniquitous (adj.) wicked;
unjust
The insult to the man was truly iniquitous.
Innate (adj.) natural;
inborn
She has an innate talent for art.
Innocuous (adj.) harmless;
dull;
innocent
His comment about the professor was inappropriate but innocuous.
Innuendo (n.) an indirect remark;
insinuation
The office was rife with innuendo that a takeover was in the works.
Insinuate (v.) to work into gradually and indirectly He was insinuating the need for a break by saying that they must be tired.
Insipid (adj.) uninteresting,
boring flat,
dull
Many people left the insipid movie before it was finished.
Insolvent (adj.) unable to pay debts Unable to pay off his debts he declared himself insolvent.
Insular (adj.) having the characteristics of an island;
narrow-minded,
provincial
The insular community was not receptive to new ideas.
Intercede (v.) to plead on behalf of another;
mediate
India does not want any nation to intercede between Pakistan and India.
Intermittent (adj.) periodic;
occasional
The patient experienced intermittent pain in the chest.
Intractable (adj.) stubborn,
obstinate;
not easily taught or disciplined
Every teacher in the school became frustrated with the intractable student and sent him to the principal’s office.
Intransigent (adj.) uncompromising She was intransigent; no argument could change her mind.
Intrepid (adj.) fearless,
bold
The intrepid reporter went right to the scene of the battle during the war.
Inundate (v.) to flood;
to overwhelm with a large amount of
After the success of the show he was inundated by congratulatory calls.
Inured (adj.) accustomed to pain The common man has become inured to constant price rise in commodities.
Inveterate (adj.) a practice settled on over a long period of time He is an inveterate liar.
Irascible (adj.) prone to anger He has an irascible disposition.
Itinerary (n.) travel plan;
schedule;
course
Their trip’s itinerary was disrupted by unexpected bad weather.

Word Collocation Example
Jaded (adj.) worn-out The people are jaded by the number of scams in the government.
Jargon (n.) incoherent speech;
specialized vocabulary in certain fields
The doctor spoke in medical jargon which we could not understand.
Jeopardy (n.) danger;
peril
The firefighters routinely put their lives into jeopardy.
Jettison (v.) to throw overboard goods to lighten a vehicle;
to discard
With his ship rapidly sinking, the captain ordered a last-ditch jettison of much of its cargo.
Jingoism (n.) extreme chauvinism or nationalism marked especially by a belligerent foreign policy When the war began many people were caught up in a wave of jingoism.
Judicious (adj.) to have or show sound judgment Judicious planning now can prevent problems later.
Juggernaut (n.) irresistible crushing force There was no escaping the juggernaut of hype for the film maker’s biggest summer blockbuster.
Juncture (n.) critical point;
meeting
Negotiations between the countries reached a critical juncture.
Junket (n.) trip, especially one taken for pleasure by an official at public expense The minister was criticized for his expensive junkets to foreign countries.
Junta (n.) group of persons joined in political intrigue;
cabal
Although the country is very strictly ruled by a military junta, people are allowed to attend church.
Juxtapose (v.) place side-by-side In the film, scenes of extravagance were often juxtaposed with scenes of scarcity.

Word Collocation Example
Kleptomania (n.) an abnormal,
persistent impulse or tendency to steal,
not prompted by need
The film star caught shoplifting admitted that he was suffering from kleptomania.
Knavery (n.) a dishonest act The teacher made it clear no knavery will be tolerated in the school.
Knead (v.) mix;
massage
After mixing the ingredients, she kneaded the dough and set it aside to rise.
Knotty (adj.) to be puzzling or hard to explain In the group discussion, the candidates cautiously gave their views on an array of knotty issues.

Word Collocation Example
Labyrinth (n.) maze;
something extremely complex or tortuous in structure
The culture that I grew up in was a labyrinth of customs and rules.
Lacerate (v.) to tear or rend roughly;
to cause sharp mental or emotional pain to;
distress
The broken glass lacerated his feet.
Laconic (adj.) sparing of words;
terse,
pithy
He was generally laconic, but always to the point.
Laggard (n.; adj.) a person who has fallen behind;
moving slowly
I hate being stuck behind laggard motorists on the highway.
Lambaste (v.) to scold or beat harshly His father lambasted him for failing in his exams.
Lament (v.; n.) to mourn or grieve;
expression of grief or sorrow
The boy is lamenting the loss of his book.
Languid (adj.) lacking vitality;
indifferent
The languid student was always late to class.
Larceny (n.) theft;
stealing
He was found guilty of larceny for stealing from a shop.
Lascivious (adj.) indecent;
immoral;
involves lust
He was dismissed from his job for making lascivious comments to a female co-worker.
Lassitude (n.) a state of being tired or listless Lassitude set in after they had worked for several continuous days.
Latency (n.) a period of inactivity The buds went from latency to full bloom in a few days.
Laud (v.) praise He lauded his daughter for winning the trophy.
Lecherous (adj.) impure in thought and act The men at the bar were lecherous and were looking for some action.
Lethargic (adj.) lazy;
passive
Feeling very lethargic, he watched television or slept the whole day.
Levity (n.) lack of seriousness;
instability
The teacher did not tolerate any sign of levity during the class.
Lewd (adj.) lustful;
wicked
The comment was so lewd it could not be repeated in front of children.
Liaison (n.) connection;
link
The union leader served as a liaison between the management and the workers.
Licentious (adj.) morally lacking in restraint The culture in the entertainment industry is seen to be licentious and corrupt.
Lithe (adj.) easily bent;
pliable;
supple
A gymnast needs to be lithe.
Livid (adj.) discoloured,
as if bruised;
extremely angry;
furious
the boss was livid when yet another deadline was missed.
Loquacious (adj.) very talkative;
garrulous
The radio jockey was a loquacious person.
Lucid (adj.) shiny;
clear minded
The old man recognized his sons only in his lucid moments.
Lurid (adj.) glowing through haze;
shocking,
sensational
The tabloid was famous for lurid stories about celebrities.
Luxuriant (adj.) to grow with energy and in great abundance She had a luxuriant garden in front of her house.

Word Collocation Example
Magnanimity (n.; adj.) a quality of nobleness of mind,
disdain of meanness or revenge;
unselfish
The rich man was well known also for his magnanimity and his large contributions to charity.
Malediction (n.) putting a curse on someone;
talking negatively about another
The two old women began cursing and heaping maledictions upon one another.
Malefactor (n.) an evil person She regards anyone who would cause the break-up of a family as a malefactor of the worst sort.
Malevolent (adj.) wishing evil (opposite: benevolent) Hindi films are generally about the struggle between relentlessly malevolent villains on one side and faultless saints on the other.
Malinger (v.) to pretend to be ill in order to escape work He will malinger on Friday so he can go to the movies.
Malleable (adj.) easy to shape or bend;
pliable
Clay is malleable.
Mandate (n.) order;
charge
The winning political party believed that it had been given a mandate for change.
Maudlin (adj.) foolishly and tearfully sentimental He became maudlin and started crying like a child.
Maverick (n.) a person who does not conform to the norm There’s always one maverick who has to go his own way.
Meander (v.; adj.) wind,
wander;
winding,
wandering aimlessly
The stream meanders through the valley.
Mellifluous (adj.) having a sweet sound The mellifluous sound of the flute held the audience captive.
Menagerie (n.) a collection of wild or foreign animals kept especially for exhibition The living room had a menagerie of glass animals.
Mendacious (adj.) given to or characterized by deception or falsehood or divergence from absolute truth The newspaper story was mendacious and hurtful.
Mercenary (adj.) working or done for payment only;
a soldier
It became apparent that his affection was pretended and he was taking care of us only for mercenary reasons.
Metamorphosis (n.) change of form The caterpillar becomes a butterfly in a beautiful metamorphosis.
Meticulous (adj.) exacting;
precise
The lab technicians must be meticulous in their measurements to obtain exact results.
Mien (n.) appearance,
demeanour
The professor’s mien suggested that she would not put up with nonsense.
Minatory (adj.) threatening A minatory black ghost is said to haunt that house.
Misanthrope (n.) a person who distrusts everything;
a hater of mankind
After the man swindled all of the woman’s savings, she became a misanthrope.
Mitigate (v.) alleviate;
lessen;
soothe
Government has announced myriad schemes to mitigate the suffering of the poor.
Modulate (v.) to regulate or adjust;
to vary the pitch
He modulated the knob until the heater was just the right temperature.
Mollify (v.) to soften;
to make less intense
All attempts to mollify the extremists have failed.
Moot (adj.) subject to or open for discussion or debate Theorizing a work by such an emotive director is very tempting, but somewhat moot.
Mordant (adj.) cutting;
sarcastic
Her mordant remark made me feel miserable.
Morose (adj.) moody,
despondent
The fans were morose after the team lost.
Motif (n.) theme The novel contained several recurring motifs.
Mundane (adj.) ordinary;
commonplace
The city girls found the small town mundane and boring.
Munificent (adj.) giving generously The wealthy man made a munificent donation for the blind.
Myriad (n.) a large number There are a myriad of options available to us.

Word Collocation Example
Narcissism (n.) self-love,
excessive interest in one’s appearance,
comfort,
abilities, etc
The narcissistic actor was difficult to get along with.
Nascent (adj.) starting to grow or develop His singing career is still in its nascent stages.
Nebulous (adj.) unclear or vague These philosophical concepts are nebulous.
Nefarious (adj.) morally bad;
wicked
The criminals hatched nefarious scheme to cheat people out of their money.
Nemesis (n.) a person who inflicts just punishment;
retribution;
a rival
Batman is the Joker’s main nemesis and always foils his wicked plots.
Neophyte (n.) beginner;
newcomer
The neophyte dancer was overcome by the fast tempo.
Nettle (v.) annoy;
irritate
The younger brother nettled his older sister until she slapped him.
Noisome (adj.) harmful to health;
having a foul odour
Noisome garbage was strewn all over the street.
Nostalgia (adj.) longing for the past;
homesickness
A wave of nostalgia swept over me when I saw my childhood home.
Noxious (adj.) harmful to one’s healthThe factory was shut down for releasing noxious waste into the river.
Nugatory (adj.) trifling;
futile;
insignificant
The book is entertaining, but its contributions to scholarship are nugatory.

Word Collocation Example
Obdurate (adj.) stubborn The obdurate child refused to take medicines.
Obeisance (n.) a gesture,
of respect or reverence
He touched the feet of the dead man paying obeisance to him.
Obfuscate (v.) to darken,
confuse,
bewilder
The explanation only helped to obfuscate and confuse the issue.
Obliterate (v.) destroy completely The steep increase in property rates obliterated my plans of buying a house.
Obloquy (n.) widespread condemnation or abuse;
disgrace or infamy resulting from this
the stranger became a victim of obloquy and hatred.
Obsequious (adj.) servilely attentive;
fawning
He is obsequious to anyone in authority.
Obsolete (adj.) out of date Cassettes have become obsolete with the popularity of compact discs and memory sticks.
Obtrude (v.) to force oneself or one’s ideas upon another Stop obtruding in others’ affairs.
Obtuse (adj.) dull;
slow to understand or perceive
he is too obtuse to take the hint.
Obviate (v.) to make unnecessary Computers have obviated the use of typewriters.
Odious (adj.) hateful;
disgusting
It was an odious and unforgivable insult.
Oligarchy (n.) form of government in which the supreme power is placed in the hands of a small,
exclusive group
The oligarchy took control after the king was overthrown.
Ominous (adj.) being or exhibiting an omen An ominous threat of war loomed over the standoff.
Omniscient (adj.) having infinite awareness,
understanding,
and insight
God is omniscient.
Opprobrious (adj.) abusive Nobody liked working for him because he was so opprobrious.
Opulence (n.) wealth;
fortune
In some parts of the city nearly unimaginable opulence can be found side by side with nearly unthinkable poverty.
Ostensible (adj.) apparent The ostensible reason for the meeting turned out to be a trick to get him to the surprise party.
Ostentatious (adj.) being showy He wears an ostentatious diamond ring on his little finger.
Ostracize (v.) to exclude The students tend to ostracize the children they dislike.

Word Collocation Example
Paean (n.) a song of praise or triumph;
a work that praises or honours someone
His farewell party featured many paeans for his excellent service to the company.
Palindrome (n.) a word or phrase which reads the same backwards and forwards “Dad” and “Madam” are examples of palindromes.
Palpable (adj.) touchable;
clear,
obvious
I felt a palpable sense of relief.
Panegyric (n.) formal or elaborate praise His panegyric of the opponent was met with widespread disapproval.
Paradigm (n.) model,
prototype;
pattern
James Joyce’s Ulysses set a new paradigm for the novel.
Paraphernalia (n.) equipment;
accessories
The soldiers carried the paraphernalia of war with them.
Pariah (n.) an outcast The match fixing charges against the captain made him a pariah in the world of cricket.
Parochial (adj.) narrow-minded The protest against the influx of people into cities is sometimes looked upon as the expression of a parochial attitude.
Parody (n.) a piece of work imitating another in a satirical manner The film was a parody of the affairs of the actor himself.
Parsimonious (adj.) very frugal;
unwilling to spend
The parsimonious customer argued that a hundred rupees was too much for a shirt.
Peccadillo (n.) a slight fault or offence We need to at all times forgive a child’s peccadilloes.
Pecuniary (adj.) pertaining to money The company forbids giving or accepting pecuniary gifts.
Pedagogue (n.) a teacher He considered his teacher a true pedagogue.
Pedantic (adj.) characterized by a narrow,
often ostentatious concern for book learning and formal rules
The pedantic attention to details resulted in the students not getting the big picture.
Pejorative (adj.) making things worse The pejorative comment deepened the dislike between the two.
Pellucid (adj.) transparent The pellucid roof of the tent was not a shield form the sun.
Penchant (n.) a liking for I have a penchant for vanilla ice cream with chocolate sauce.
Penitent (adj.) feeling sorry for what one has done The penitent man asked for forgiveness.
Pensive (adj.) reflective;
contemplative
He was pensive and requested to be left alone.
Perfidious (adj.) faithless;
treacherous
The business failed as one of the partners indulged in perfidious deals.
Perfunctory (adj.) done in a routine,
mechanical way,
without interest
He was bored with his job and did all his tasks perfunctorily.
Perjury (n.) the practice of lying Lying while on the witness stand is perjury.
Pernicious (adj.) dangerous;
harmful
She thinks television has a pernicious influence on our children.
Peruse (v.) to read carefully;
to study
The letter stated all the facts of the case for his perusal.
Petulant (adj.) peevish;
cranky;
rude
The long illness put the boy in a petulant mood.
Philanthropy (n.) charity;
unselfishness
Among the industrialist’s philanthropies was a home for the blind.
Phlegmatic (adj.) without emotion or interest;
sluggish and dull
The phlegmatic child rarely went outside to play.
Pique (n.) resentment at being slighted He slammed the door in a fit of pique.
Pithy (adj.) terse/and full of meaning His comments are always pithy.
Placate (v.) to appease or pacify The angry customer was not placated by the salesman’s apology.
Placid (adj.) undisturbed and calm In the morning the lake was placid and beautiful.
Plaintive (adj.) being mournful or sad The song was plaintive and melodious.
Platonic (adj.) idealistic or impractical;
not amorous or sensual
They had a platonic friendship, not a romantic one.
Plausible (adj.) probable;
feasible
We could not find a plausible explanation for our failure.
Plethora (n.) a superabundance He thought an MBA would open a plethora of options.
Ponderous (adj.) unwieldy from weight;
dull or laboured
the students fell asleep during the ponderous lecture.
Portend (v.) to be an omen of;
signify
The thunder portends of an oncoming storm.
Pragmatic (adj.) matter-of-fact;
practical
His pragmatic view comes from years of experience.
Precipitate (v.) to cause to happen;
happening quickly
The insult to his wife precipitated the fight between them.
Precocious (adj.) developed or matured earlier than usual The precocious eight-year-old could write poems.
Presage (n.) an omen;
a foreshadowing characteristic
The lull presages a storm.
Prescience (n.) knowing about something before it happens My prescience that I would win came true.
Prevaricate (v.) to speak equivocally or evasively,
i.e., to lie
When questioned about his affair, he began to prevaricate.
Pristine (adj.) primitive,
pure,
uncorrupted
My native village is still in its pristine condition.
Privy (adj.) private;
confidential
He was one of a handful of people privy to the news of the pending merger.
Probity (n.) honesty The defence lawyer questioned the probity of the witness
Proliferate (v.) to reproduce quickly Rumours about the secret wedding of the celebrity proliferated on the Internet.
Prolific (adj.) producing fruit;
marked by abundant inventiveness or productivity
Winston Churchill was a prolific writer too.
Propensity (n.) a natural tendency towards;
bias
She has a propensity to hire men over women.
Propinquity (n.) closeness in time or place;
closeness of relationship
The propinquity of the disasters put the community in chaos.
Propitiate (v.) to win the goodwill of The superstitious community performed animal sacrifices to propitiate the gods.
Prosaic (adj.) tiresome;
ordinary
He wanted to escape from his prosaic life of a farmer.
Proselytize (v.) to convert from one belief or religion to another The preacher’s efforts to proselytize the villagers were met with resistance.
Provincial (adj.) regional;
unsophisticated
Accustomed to city life, he found his family back home too provincial.

Word Collocation Example
Quaff (v.) to drink deeply We stopped at a bar and quaffed a few beers.
Quagmire (n.) marshy land;
a difficult,
precarious,
or entrapping position
The protracted custody dispute between the divorced couple became a judicial quagmire.
Quaint (adj.) old-fashioned;
unusual;
odd
The book describes the quaint customs of the natives.
Qualm (n.) sudden feeling of uneasiness or doubt He accepted their offer without a qualm.
Quandary (n.) dilemma I’m in a quandary about whether I should try to repair my stereo or buy a new one.
Quarantine (n.) isolation of a person or persons to prevent the spread of disease The astronauts were put under quarantine when they returned.
Quiescent (adj.) inactive,
at rest
On Sunday morning everyone is quiescent.
Quintessence (n.) the pure essence of anything This scam is the quintessence of India’s political class.
Quirk (n.) peculiar behaviour;
startling twist
Wearing white shoes everyday is one of his quirks.

Word Collocation Example
Rabid (adj.; n.) furious;
going to extreme lengths in expressing or pursuing a feeling,
interest,
or opinion
He is a rabid supporter of the political party.
Raconteur (n.) a person who excels in telling stories Apart from being good in his subject, our teacher is also an excellent raconteur.
Ramification (n.) the arrangement of branches;
consequence
We should take into the account the ramifications of the decision.
Rampant (adj.) growing unchecked;
widespread
Rumours were rampant about the imminent crash in the stock market.
Rancid (adj.) having a bad odour Left out too long, the oil turned rancid.
Rancour (n.) strong ill will;
enmity
Rancour filled every line that he wrote in the letter.
Ratify (v.) to make valid;
confirm
The parliament ratified the new law.
Raucous (adj.) disagreeable to the sense of hearing;
harsh;
hoarse
The street was full of raucous protesters.
Rebuttal (n.) refutation He noted the points made by his rival for a systematic rebuttal during the debate.
Recalcitrant (adj.) stubbornly rebellious The recalcitrant girl did whatever the others did not want her to do.
Recidivism (n.) habitual or chronic relapse of criminal or antisocial offences The criminal was sent back to prison as he experienced several episodes of recidivism.
Recondite (adj.) hard to understand;
concealed
Many quantum physics theories are recondite.
Recusant (adj.) disobedient of authority A recusant attitude will lead to denial of privileges.
Refurbish (v.) to make new;
renovate
He is refurbishing his old house.
Refute (v.) challenge;
disprove
She refuted the allegations against her.
Reiterate (v.) to repeat The teacher reiterated the instructions for those who may have not understood.
Relegate (v.) banish;
put to a lower position
The British used to relegate political rebels to faraway islands.
Relinquish (v.) to let go;
abandon
In the face of fierce criticism he relinquished his position.
Remonstrate (v.) to protest or object to The public remonstrated against the faulty verdict in the murder case.
Renegade (n.) a person who abandons something;
a traitor
The opposition welcomed into their fold the renegade form the ruling party.
Repast (n.) food that is eaten She offered us a light repast before we set out on our trip.
Reprehend (v.) to criticize Without exception, book reviewers reprehended the novel’s tired plot.
Reproach (v.) to scold The major reproached his troops for not following orders.
Reprobate (v.) to condemn strongly as unworthy,
unacceptable,
or evil
Without hesitation she reprobated such an indecent idea.
Reproof (n.) a rebuke For all his hard work, all he got was a reproof of his efforts.
Repudiate (v.) to disown;
to deny support for;
reject;
cancel
The offer was repudiated because of its cost.
Repugnant (adj.) inconsistent;
offensive or repulsive
The walls were full of repugnant graffiti.
Resplendent (adj.) dazzling and shining Her new diamond was resplendent in the sunshine.
Resurgent (adj.) rising or tending to rise again A resurgent wave of enthusiasm erupted from the crowd.
Reticent (adj.) silent;
reserved;
shy
The reticent child played alone.
Retract (v.) to draw or take back You should not retract from your commitments.
Reverie (n.) trance;
dreamy
He was lost in a reverie.
Revile (v.) to be abusive in speech It is not appropriate for a teacher to revile a student.
Rhetorical (adj.) having to do with verbal communication;
artificial eloquence
In posing a rhetorical question, he hoped to get people thinking.
Ribald (adj.) vulgar joking or mocking Some of the ribald scenes were removed from the movie.
Rudimentary (adj.) elementary This class requires a rudimentary knowledge of number system.
Ruminate (v.) to consider carefully He ruminated over the implications of their decision.
Rummage (v.) search thoroughly He rummaged the attic for his coin collection.
Rustic (adj.) plain and unsophisticated;
rural
The suburb has a rustic atmosphere.

Word Collocation Example
Sagacious (adj.) wise The old man gave sagacious advice.
Salient (adj.) noticeable;
prominent
Her most salient feature is her dark eyes.
Salubrious (adj.) promoting good health The salubrious air of the hills helped him recover from his illness.
Salutatory (adj.) of or containing greetings The institute sent out salutatory letters to every student.
Sanguine (adj.) optimistic;
cheerful;
red
Her sanguine temperament was infectious.
Sarcasm (n.) ironic;
bitter humour
His unhappiness was evident in the petty sarcasms that he resorted to in his speech.
Sardonic (adj.) having a sarcastic quality H. L. Mencken was known for his sardonic writings on political figures.
Satire (n.) a literary work holding up human vices and follies to ridicule or scorn This novel is a political satire.
Saunter (v.) to walk at a leisurely pace;
stroll
Not knowing what to do with his time, he sauntered into the park.
Savant (n.) one who is intelligent He is a savant in the field of fuel cells.
Schism (n.) a division in an organized group The issue exposed the schism between the members of the party.
Scourge (v.) to whip severely The trainer will scourge the animal if it attacks someone.
Scrupulous (adj.) morally upright;
careful
She is always scrupulous about her behaviour and work.
Scurrilous (adj.) vulgar His scurrilous language offended everyone.
Sedition (n.) a revolt The leaders of the tribal people were charged and arrested for sedition.
Sequester (v.) to separate or segregate The suspects were sequestered in special room for identification by witnesses.
Serendipity (n.) making fortunate discoveries accidentally They found each other by pure serendipity.
Servile (adj.) slavish;
grovelling
He maintained a servile attitude around people with money.
Sinuous (adj.) full of curves;
twisting and turning
The mountain road was sinuous and dangerous.
Sceptic (n.) doubter Sceptics have pointed out flaws in the theory.
Skulk (v.) to move secretly The burglar skulked in the area observing each house.
Slander (v.) defame;
maliciously misrepresent
The celebrity filed suit against the critic for slander.
Slovenly (adv.) sloppy His teachers did not approve of his slovenly manner.
Sojourn (v.) to stay temporarily The family will sojourn at their ancestral house.
Solace (n.) hope;
comfort during a time of grief
When she was sad she found solace in her friend.
Solemn (adj.) marked by the invocation of a religious sanction;
sublime
They made a solemn vow to love each other for ever.
Sombre (adj.) gloomy The sad story had put everyone in a sombre mood.
Soporific (adj.) causing sleep As the medicine was soporific, he avoided it while driving.
Sordid (adj.) filthy;
base;
vile
He shared the sordid details of his past.
Sovereign (adj.) supreme It is the government’s sovereign duty to protect the rights of its citizens.
Specious (adj.) having a false look of truth or genuineness We could see through his specious reasoning meant to deceive us.
Spurious (adj.) not genuine,
false;
bogus
The newspaper was notorious for spurious information.
Squalid (adj.) filthy;
wretched (from squalor)
We were touched by the squalid conditions in the slum.
Stagnant (adj.) motionless The stagnant water became breeding place for mosquitoes.
Staid (adj.) marked by self-control;
serious
Were surprised by the joke form a usually staid professor.
Stigmatize (v.) to characterize or make as disgraceful The pilferage she committed in her first job stigmatized her career.
Stoic (adj.) calm,
indifferent to pleasure or pain
She bore the loss of her mother with stoic calm.
Stolid (adj.) showing no emotion With a stolid expression, the man walked away from the confrontation.
Strident (adj.) harsh,
loud
The procession raised strident slogans against the government.
Stupor (n.) a stunned or bewildered condition The hit on the head sent him into a stupor.
Stymie (v.) to hinder or obstruct My efforts were stymied by lack of funds.
Suave (adj.) effortlessly gracious As a public relations officer he was suave in his dealings with others.
Subjugate (v.) to bring under control The royal family subjugated the peasants.
Subsume (v.) to include within a larger group Red, green, and yellow are subsumed under the term “colour.”
Subtlety (n.) understatement;
barely noticeable
Please state your demand clearly and do not resort to subtleties.
Succinct (adj.) clearly stated;
characterized by conciseness
The speech was succinct yet emotional.
Succour (n.) aid;
assistance
The government provided succour to the victims of the earthquake in the relief camps.
Supplant (v.) to take the place of Can you supplant my position in the team if I cannot play?
Suppliant (adj.) asking earnestly and submissively He said he was a suppliant sinner asking forgiveness from god.
Surreptitious (adj.) done secretly She gave a surreptitious glance in his direction.
Susceptible (adj.) easily imposed;
inclined She is susceptible to all kinds of allergies. Sycophant (n.) flatterer
He is sycophantic to anyone in authority.
Syllogism (n.) reasoning in order from general to particular;
deductive reasoning
”Every virtue is laudable; kindness is a virtue; therefore kindness is laudable” is a syllogism.
Synergy (n.) interaction of discrete agencies (as industrial firms),
agents (as drugs),
or conditions such that the total effect is greater than the sum of the individual effects
The synergy created by the merger is expected to reduce the cost of operations.

Word Collocation Example
Tacit (adj.) not voiced or expressed She felt that she had the tacit approval of her parents to marry her boyfriend.
Taciturn (adj.) inclined to silence;
speaking little
Being taciturn, he never initiates a conversation.
Tawdry (adj.) cheap and gaudy in appearance or quality;
ignoble
The celebrity’s personal life as reported in the tabloid was a tawdry affair.
Temerity (n.) foolhardiness;
recklessness
He was punished for his temerity.
Tenacious (adj.) persistent He was tenacious in his pleas; she finally agreed.
Tenet (n.) a principle accepted as authoritative The tenets of socialism were explained in the book.
Tenuous (adj.) thin;
weak
His claim to the ownership of property was tenuous.
Terrestrial (adj.) pertaining to the earth Cows are terrestrial animals; fish are aquatic.
Timorous (adj.) lacking courage;
timid
The timorous child hid behind his parents.
Tortuous (adj.) full of twists and turns The tortuous path had too many hairpin turns.
Tractable (adj.) easily managed He is very tractable child.
Tranquillity (n.) peace;
stillness;
harmony
The tranquillity of the sunset filled with joy.
Transpire (v.) to take place;
come about
Tell me what transpired in that room.
Trenchant (adj.) cutting;
keen or incisive words
He was a writer with trenchant wit.
Trepidation (n.) apprehension;
uneasiness
He felt trepidation at agreeing to their proposal.
Truculent (adj.) fierce,
savage,
cruel
The dies hard fans became truculent and violent when their team lost.
Truncate (v.) to shorten by cutting The session was truncated owing to lack of time.
Tumult (n.) a noisy commotion;
disturbance
The teacher had to shout to be heard over the tumult
Turbid (adj.) thick and dense;
cloudy
The river turned turbid after the rains.
Turpitude (n.) vileness Have you ever been arrested or convicted for an offence involving moral turpitude?
Tyranny (n.) absolute power;
autocracy
The king sought an absolute tyranny over the colonies.

Word Collocation Example
Ubiquitous (adj.) omnipresent;
present everywhere
Nowadays cell phones are ubiquitous.
Umbrage (n.) offence or resentment The student took umbrage at the remark of his mentor.
Uncanny (adj.) of a strange nature;
weird
She had an uncanny resemblance to someone I had seen before.
Undermine (v.) to weaken;
often through subtle means
The scams have undermined people’s confidence in the government.
Unequivocal (adj.) clear and unambiguous It was an unequivocal mandate with 50-0 votes.
Ungainly (adj.) clumsy and unattractive The ungainly man knocked over the expensive flower vase.
Unobtrusive (adj.) out of the way;
remaining quietly in the background
The shy man found an unobtrusive seat in the far corner of the room.
Upshot (n.) the final act or result The upshot of the debate was that the bill would be released to the floor.
Urbane (adj.) cultured;
suave;
notably polite or
polished in manner
He was the most urbane in the group of aristocrats.
Usurp (v.) to take something by force I shall not allow him to usurp my authority.
Utopia (n.) imaginary land with perfect social and political systems Voltaire wrote of a utopia where the streets were paved with gold.

Word Collocation Example
Vacuous (adj.) empty;
lacking in ideas;
stupid
He had a vacuous expression in his face.
Vagary (n.) caprice;
whim
Most of my grandmother’s ideas were dismissed as mere vagaries of age.
Valedictory (adj.) pertaining to farewell The valedictory speech by the Principal was very emotional.
Vapid (adj.) dull and unimaginative;
insipid
In her interview she came across as very vapid and artificial person.
Variegated (adj.) many-coloured The dancers wore variegated costumes.
Vendetta (n.) blood feud;
series of retaliatory,
vengeful,
or hostile acts
He waged a personal vendetta against those who opposed him.
Venerable (adj.) deserving high respect The venerable old man was a source of advice for the villagers.
Venison (n.) the meat of a deer Venison is said to be low in fat
Veracity (n.) truthfulness We questioned the veracity of his statements.
Verdant (adj.) green;
lush in vegetation
Soon after the rains the hills were verdant.
Verisimilitude (n.) appearance of truth,
likelihood
likelihood—the novel’s degree of verisimilitude is compromised by 18th-century characters who speak in very 2Ist-century English.
Vernal (adj.) pertaining to spring The trees and flowers were in vernal bloom.
Viable (adj.) practical or workable;
capable of maintaining life
The plan did not appear viable at all.
Vicarious (adj.) experienced imaginatively through another person She had never seen the Himalayas but through the description of her friends she could experience its grandeur vicariously.
Vicissitude (n.) change of fortune A business run on moral grounds may not survive the vicissitudes of the market.
Vignette (n.) picture;
short literary sketch
The film is a series of vignettes about living with cancer.
Vindicate (v.) clear from blame;
exonerate;
justify or support
She will be completely vindicated by the evidence.
Vindictive (adj.) out for revenge;
malicious
You are being vindictive for no apparent reason.
Virtuoso (n.) highly skilled artist Ronald is a computer virtuoso.
Virulent (adj.) extremely poisonous;
hostile;
bitter
The disease is caused by,a virulent bacterium.
Vitiate (adj.) spoil the effect of;
make inoperative
The impact of the film was vitiated by poor acting.
Vitriolic (adj.) corrosive;
sarcastic
His speech was vitriolic.
Vituperative (adj.) containing or characterized by verbal abuse The discussion was in danger of becoming a vituperative, schoolboy argument.
Vociferous (adj.) clamorous;
noisy
The decision was made over their vociferous objections.
Voluble (adj.) fluent;
glib;
talkative
Voluble consumer groups help build public opinion.
Voracious (adj.) ravenous He has a voracious appetite.
Vulpine (adj.) ike a fox;
crafty
They were taken in by his vulpine charms.

Word Collocation Example
Waft (v.) move gently by wind or breeze The aroma of food cooking wafted out of the kitchen.
Waive (v.) to give up;
to put off until later
Seeing his difficulty, the Principal waived part of the fees for the course.
Wan (adj.) lacking colour;
sickly pale
Her face became wan at the sight of blood.
Wanton (adj.) playfully mean or cruel;
mischievous
They were accused of wanton cruelty toward animals.
Warrant (v.) justify;
authorize
The punishment he received was not warranted.
Whet (v.) to sharpen by rubbing;
to stimulate
The ads are trying to whet the consumers’ appetite.
Whimsical (adj.) fanciful;
subject to erratic behaviour or unpredictable change
It is difficult to make plans with such a whimsical friend.
Wily (adj.) concealing;
sly
He turned out to be a wily negotiator.
Winsome (adj.) charming;
sweetly attractive
His winsome words moved the crowd to love him even more.
Wizened (adj.) shrivelled;
withered
The wizened face of the old man was covered by his hat.
Wrath (n.) violent or unrestrained anger;
fury
I waited until my initial wrath had eased before voicing my complaint.
Wreak (v.) to give vent;
to inflict
Gangs have been wreaking mayhem in the city.
Wrest (v.) to pull or force away by a violent twisting He wrested the book out of her hands.
Wry (adj.) mocking;
cynical
He has a wry sense of humour which offends people.

Word Collocation Example
Xenophobia (n.) fear of foreigners He was apprehensive of going abroad to study because of the stories of violence due to xenophobia.

Word Collocation Example
Yeoman (n.) one that performs great and loyal service The Principal has done a yeoman’s job in enhancing the reputation of this institute.
Yoke (n.) harness;
collar;
bondage
India was able to throw off the yoke of imperialism and embrace freedom.
Yore (n.) time past and especially long past My favourite stories are about the kings, princes, and princesses of yore.

Word Collocation Example
Zealot (n.) a believer,
fanatic
The zealots on both sides of issue resorted to threats.
Zenith (n.) point directly overhead in the sky;
highest point
The zenith of her career came when she became the CEO.
Zephyr (n.) a gentle wind;
breeze
It was a beautiful day, with a zephyr adding to the pleasant chill.


English Language – Related Information
GRE Verbal Reading Comprehension
One Word Substitutions Introduction
GRE Verbal Text Completion
Word Formation