7 • Lesson 8 Word List


(adj) Sharp, irritating, or bitter to the sense of taste or smell.
Burning rubber gives off acrid fumes.


(n) A person killed or injured in a war or accident.
There were many casualties of the 2011 tsunami, or tidal wave, that struck Japan.


(adj) 1. Overcrowded; filled too full.
We take the subway during rush hour to avoid the congested city streets.

2. Filled with fluid.
My sinuses get congested when the pollen count is high.

congestion (n) 1. The condition of being overcrowded.
The congestion inside the furniture store is due to the “Going Out of Business” sale.

2. The condition of being filled with fluid.
Most cold remedies claim to relieve congestion for at least eight hours.


(v) To manage problems or difficulties successfully.
Extra police were on duty to cope with the large crowds expected for the parade.


(adj) With great speed or force; reckless.
The crowd made a headlong rush for the best seats as soon as the doors were opened.

(adv) Recklessly; without time for careful thought.
It’s foolish to rush headlong into a dispute that doesn’t concern you.


(v) To move with great force and speed.
A snowball hurtled past my ear.


(v) To get in the way of; to interfere with the movement of.
An overturned truck impeded the flow of traffic.

impediment (n) An obstacle; something that gets in the way.
Poor roads are an impediment to travel.


(adj) Bound to happen; unavoidable.
A certain amount of wear on even the best tires is inevitable with normal use.


(v) 1. To put into effect; to bring into use.
The school initiated the new dress code on September 6.

2. To take in as a member.
The National Honor Society initiated thirty new members last evening.

initiation (n) 1. The act of beginning.
The initiation of the new traffic plan has been delayed until the road is repaired.

2. The ceremony or process that makes one a member.
A celebration followed the initiation of new members into the San Francisco Film Society.


(adj) Very angry; furious.
Irate citizens demanded that the chemical company stop polluting the lake.


(adj) 1. Not strictly enforced; undemanding; careless.
Frequent inspections are designed to ensure that airline safety procedures have not become lax.

2. Not tight; loose.
When I felt the rope go lax, I knew that my partner had dropped the other end.


(adj) Failing to take proper care of or to give proper attention to.
You were negligent when you failed to lock the car doors.

negligence (n) The quality, state, or act of being negligent.
When I went to camp, my houseplants died because of my sister’s negligence.


(v) 1. To burn slowly without bursting into flames.
Hot ashes smolder long after the flames of a campfire have died down.

2. To exist in a hidden state before bursting into the open.
A desire for freedom smoldered in the hearts of the people who left Cuba.


(adj) Strict; severe.
The stringent rules state that no exceptions can be made.


(n) A large number of people gathered together; a crowd.
A throng of supporters cheered the president’s arrival in Seattle.

(v) To gather or move in large numbers.
Fans thronged into the ballpark for the first game of the World Series.


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