8 • Lesson 20 Word List

alienate

(v) 1. To cause to feel unfriendly where friendliness once existed.
Be careful not to alienate voters, because we need their support.

2. To cause to feel alone and cut off from.
Her year out of school had alienated Ruby from her classmates.

compete
fervent

(adj) Having or showing great warmth or deep feeling; intensely eager.
Looking meaningfully at the jury, the lawyer made a fervent plea for his client’s life.

fervor (n) Great warmth and intensity of feeling.
Romeo addressed Juliet with such fervor that her eyes filled with tears.

compete
forbearance

(n) A showing of self-control or patience.
With unusual forbearance, the principal asked the unruly student to explain the reason for his vandalism.

forbear (v) To hold back; to keep from doing or saying something.
My mother asked me to forbear revealing to my younger brothers that Abuela was ill.

gullible

(adj) Easily tricked or cheated; too trusting.
I was gullible enough to believe him when he said he would be on time.

hindrance

(n) Any person or thing that is an obstacle.
Heavy traffic on the expressway is always a hindrance to my getting to school on time.

compete
inflammatory*

(adj) Causing anger or trouble.
Even though the defendant’s rhetoric was inflammatory, the Supreme Court upheld his right to freedom of speech.

inflame (v) 1. To excite or anger.
The principal’s refusal to listen to our concerns inflamed us to the point of shouting.

2. To make or become swollen and sore.
Try not to rub your eye; it will just inflame it.

ordain

(v) 1. To order or prearrange.
The U.S. Constitution ordains three separate branches of government: the executive, the legislative, and the judicial.

2. To install as a minister, priest, or rabbi, often in a special ceremony.
She hopes to work in the villages in Chiapas once she is ordained.

ovation

(n) An enthusiastic reception; long and loud applause.
When the pianist stepped onto the stage, the audience rose with a spontaneous ovation.

compete
overt

(adj) Not hidden; public.
After months of making small hints about my clothes, my older sister finally made an overt offer to buy me a new spring wardrobe.

recant

(v) To take back an opinion or statement; to confess to being wrong.
After he talked to a lawyer, the young man recanted his confession and pleaded “not guilty.”

rejoinder

(n) A reply to what has been said.
Uncle Paco was famous in our family for his funny, sharp rejoinders.

reproach

(v) To find fault with; to blame.
My mother reproached me for forgetting my little brother’s birthday.

(n) Blame, disgrace, or discredit.
When my grandmother died at the age of ninety-four, she had lived a life that was above reproach.

compete
servile

(adj) Excessively humble; overly willing to serve or to please.
Mari’s servile attention to the teacher was her way of trying to get a good grade.

surpass

(v) To exceed or go beyond.
The fact that Marta finished her first marathon surpassed her wildest dreams.

vilify

(v) To make vicious remarks about someone in a way that damages that person’s character; to slander.
The candidates for governor agreed not to vilify each other in their commercials.

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