8 • Lesson 15 Word List

ascertain

(v) To find out for certain.
Ms. Jenckes sent Tyrone to ascertain the cause of the delay.

chastise

(v) 1. To punish by beating.
A hundred years ago disruptive students were chastised with a cane.

2. To rebuke or criticize severely.
It is embarrassing to be chastised in public.

compete
cull

(v) To select and remove weak or inferior members from.
Game wardens cull the deer herd when it grows too large for the deer’s food supply.

defer

(v) 1. To put off or postpone.
Timothy deferred his decision about which team to join until he could talk to the coaches.

2. To yield to out of respect for the knowledge or authority of another.
My uncle usually defers to my aunt, who is a doctor, when someone in the family is sick.

deference (n) Submitting to the wishes of another because of respect.
Our parents taught my brother and me to show deference to our elders.

desist

(v) To refrain from continuing something.
Our principal told us we must desist from talking in study hall.

discredit

(v) 1. To hurt the reputation of.
Beckham was discredited when his own lies were found out.

2. To destroy confidence or trust in.
New scientific evidence often discredits earlier theories.

encroach

(v) To advance little by little beyond the usual limits or boundaries.
We pruned the branches of the maple tree that encroached on our property.

foreboding

(n) A strong feeling that something bad is about to happen.
It was with foreboding that we began to search for the missing kitten.

humane

(adj) Compassionate, kind to other human beings or to animals.
What is humane treatment for a horse with a broken leg?

compete
irrational*

(adj) Lacking sound judgment; not governed by reason.
As she approached the house, Candace felt an irrational fear inside herself.

lurid

(adj) 1. Causing horror; extremely gruesome.
My parents will not give me permission to see that movie because of several lurid scenes it contains.

2. Glowing with the redness of flames seen through a haze.
The dense smog gave the rays of the setting sun a lurid cast.

compete
perpetuate

(v) To cause to continue indefinitely.
Your negative attitude toward studying science just perpetuates your inability to get a good grade in the class.

restive

(adj) Showing impatience because of restrictions or delays.
We grew restive as we awaited permission to return to our flooded house.

stamina

(n) Physical strength or courage to resist hardship, illness, or fatigue.
Jill claims that running five miles a day has built up her stamina.

compete
surveillance

(n) Close observation of a person or area.
Because of the recent incidents of vandalism, the police have put the high school under closer surveillance.

compete

➤ Click the icon to study your Wordly Wise i3000 words using the Flashcard, Learn, and Spell modes in Quizlet.