10 • Lesson 6 Word List

ameliorate

(v) To make better; to become better; to improve.
The snowplows were put to work to ameliorate the dangerous driving conditions that resulted from the storm.

baleful

(adj) Expressing hatred or evil; harmful, ominous.
Rodrigo gave me a baleful look when I accused him of lying.

compete
berate

(v) To criticize vigorously; to scold vehemently.
Ms. Alanso told the older students not to berate the younger ones when they made mistakes.

compete
circumvent*

(v) To avoid through craftiness.
She boasted that she was able to circumvent the rules with some creative interpretation.

compunction

(n) A feeling of uneasiness or anxiety caused by guilt.
Robin Hood had no compunction about stealing from the rich to give to the poor.

condone

(v) To overlook or accept without punishment; to pardon or excuse.
Mr. Hagopian said that he could not condone keeping a library book for the whole school year, because that made it unavailable to other students.

diminutive

(adj) Very small; tiny.
On the dollhouse kitchen table there was a diminutive bowl of fruit.

compete
euphemism

(n) A polite term used to avoid directly naming something considered offensive or unpleasant.
“Pass away” is a euphemism for “die.”

expendable

(adj) Able to be used up and then discarded or replaced.
Paper, envelopes, and pencils are expendable office items.

compete
heresy

(n) The expression of unacceptable views, especially those that are in conflict with established religious teaching.
Galileo was suspected of heresy by the Catholic Church because he believed the sun was at the center of the solar system.

heretical (adj)
The woman held the heretical belief that only the rich should be allowed to have children.

infirmity

(n) Physical or mental weakness or defect.
Brittle bones is a common infirmity of the elderly.

infirm (adj) Weak or feeble.
Since my grandmother began lifting weights, she feels much less infirm.

profane

(v) To treat with scorn or irreverence.
Vandals profaned the memorial by throwing eggs at it.

(adj) 1. Disrespectful of sacred things.
Dancing was considered profane by the Puritans.

2. Not connected with religion; worldly.
The poems deal poignantly with love in both its sacred and profane aspects.

compete
recompense

(v) To pay or compensate.
The insurance company recompensed us for the damage to the roof caused by the storm.

(n) Payment; compensation.
Although Alessandro received no recompense as a volunteer at the radio station, he gained valuable experience.

repast

(n) Food and drink; a meal.
His usual midday repast was a sandwich and a glass of milk.

servitude

(n) A lack of freedom; forced labor.
The United States Constitution bans involuntary servitude except as a legally justified punishment for a crime.

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