Monday, July 03, 2006

My Results

laissez faire
I knew the words in green; I did not know the words in red. In total, I knew 80 of 100.

Word My Definition Actual Definition Notes
abjure to abstain from giving one's opinion 1. To recant solemnly; renounce or repudiate. 2. To renounce under oath; forswear.  
abrogate to mitigate or make less To abolish, do away with, or annul, especially by authority.  
abstemious partaking very little in things like drinking or pizza binges 1 Eating and drinking in moderation. 2. Characterized by abstinence or moderation.  
acumen intelligence, shrewdness Quickness, accuracy, and keenness of judgment or insight. You could say I have vocabulary acumen!
antebellum referring to the time shortly before the Civil War Belonging to the period before a war, especially the American Civil War.  
auspicious portending good fortune (this actually comes from Roman "bird omens" avis=bird) 1. Attended by favorable circumstances; propitious. 2. Marked by success; prosperous.  
belie to misrepresent 1. To give a false representation to; misrepresent. 2. To show to be false; contradict:  
bellicose talking heartily and freely, like a drunk person might Warlike or hostile in manner or temperament.  
bowdlerize oh, crap. i totally knew this one, at one time To remove material that is considered offensive or objectionable from (a book, for example).  
chicanery screwing around Deception by trickery or sophistry.  
chromosome lots of strands of DNA. people have 46 of them in each of their cells except eggs and sperm 1. A threadlike linear strand of DNA and associated proteins in the nucleus of eukaryotic cells that carries the genes and functions in the transmission of hereditary information. 2. A circular strand of DNA in bacteria that contains the hereditary information necessary for cell life.any of the rod-shaped or threadlike DNA-containing structures of cellular organisms that contain all or most of the genes of the organism.  
churlish agressively sullen 1. Vulgar. 2. Marked by a lack of civility or graciousness; surly. 3. Difficult to work with or deal with, intractable.  
circumlocution wandering about 1. The use of unnecessarily wordy and indirect language. 2. Evasion in speech or writing. 3. A roundabout expression.  
circumnavigate to go all the way around, as in, sailing all the way around the world 1. To proceed completely around. 2. To go around; circumvent.  
deciduous seasonal 1. Falling off or shed at a specific season or stage of growth. 2. Shedding or losing foliage at the end of the growing season. 3. Not lasting; ephemeral. close!
deleterious bad for you, especially to your health Having a harmful effect; injurious.  
diffident aloof 1. Lacking or marked by a lack of self-confidence; shy and timid. 2. Reserved in manner.  
enervate give increased strength/vitality to 1. To weaken or destroy the strength or vitality of.  
enfranchise to include, esp. in society or a political process 1. To bestow a franchise on. 2. To endow with the rights of citizenship, especially the right to vote. 3. To free, as from bondage.  
epiphany a moment of clarity or realization 1. A revelatory manifestation of a divine being. 2. A sudden manifestation of the essence or meaning of something. 3. A comprehension or perception of reality by means of a sudden intuitive realization.  
equinox the two days a year when the daylight and night are equal 1. Either of the two points on the celestial sphere where the celestial equator intersects the ecliptic; 2. Either of the two times each year (as about March 21 and September 23) when the sun crosses the equator and day and night are everywhere on earth of approximately equal length.  
euro the unit of currency in the European Union The official common currency of 12 European Union nations (Austria, Belgium, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, the Netherlands, Portugal, and Spain).  
evanescent ethereal, so light and airy as to seem unreal Vanishing or likely to vanish like vapor. when used in a sentence, nobody would be able to tell the difference!
expurgate to eliminate from a text To remove erroneous, vulgar, obscene, or otherwise objectionable material from (a book, for example) before publication.  
facetious joking around Playfully jocular; humorous.  
fatuous holier-than-thou, snobby, pretentious Foolish or silly, especially in a smug or self-satisfied way.  
feckless acting without attention to consequences 1. Lacking purpose or vitality; feeble or ineffective. 2. Careless and irresponsible.  
fiduciary having to do with financial stuff 1. Of or relating to a holding of something in trust for another. 2. Of or being a trustee or trusteeship; 3. Held in trust.  
filibuster an action in which one member of a legislative body holds up any other work by talking, and talking, and talking 1. The use of obstructionist tactics, especially prolonged speechmaking, for the purpose of delaying legislative action. 2. An instance of the use of this delaying tactic; 3. An adventurer who engages in a private military action in a foreign country  
gamete a haploid sex cell A reproductive cell having the haploid number of chromosomes, especially a mature sperm or egg capable of fusing with a gamete of the opposite sex to produce the fertilized egg.  
gauche crude or low-class (from the French left) Lacking social polish; tactless.  
gerrymander to draw voting districts in a politician's favor To divide (a geographic area) into voting districts so as to give unfair advantage to one party in elections.  
hegemony the dominant class or culture The predominant influence, as of a state, region, or group, over another or others.  
hemoglobin a compound in the blood that bonds to oxygen, allowing it to be carried through the body The iron-containing respiratory pigment in red blood cells of vertebrates, consisting of about 6 percent heme and 94 percent globin.  
homogeneous a set of things having characteristics in common 1. Of the same or similar nature or kind. 2. Uniform in structure or composition throughout.  
hubris excessive pride (don't get me started on Oedipus Rex) Overbearing pride or presumption; arrogance.  
hypotenuse the side of a right triangle opposite the right angle The hypotenuse of a right triangle is the triangle's longest side; the side opposite the right angle.  
impeach to bring non-criminal charges against an elected official 1. To make an accusation against. 2. To charge (a public official) with improper conduct in office before a proper tribunal. 3. To challenge the validity of; try to discredit: impeach a witness's credibility.  
incognito in disguise With one's identity disguised or concealed.  
incontrovertible irrefutable, impossible to disprove Impossible to dispute; unquestionable.  
inculcate to steep in a set of ideas, what the KKK does to their kids 1. To impress (something) upon the mind of another by frequent instruction or repetition; instill: inculcating sound principles. 2. To teach (others) by frequent instruction or repetition; indoctrinate.  
infrastructure the support system that makes large entities (machines, societies, cities, etc) work 1. An underlying base or foundation especially for an organization or system. 2. The basic facilities, services, and installations needed for the functioning of a community or society, such as transportation and communications systems, water and power lines, and public institutions including schools, post offices, and prisons.  
interpolate to distinguish one from the other 1. To insert or introduce between other elements or parts. 2. To insert (material) into a text or insert into a conversation. 3. To change or falsify (a text) by introducing new or incorrect material. 4. Mathematics. To estimate a value of (a function or series) between two known values.  
irony when what you get is different from what you expect; when knowing some information about a situation fundamentally alters one's understanding of the situation, and the entire situation then looks one way to some people, and another way to the people who know that information 1. The use of words to express something different from and often opposite to their literal meaning. 2. An expression or utterance marked by a deliberate contrast between apparent and intended meaning. 3. A literary style employing such contrasts for humorous or rhetorical effect. 4. Incongruity between what might be expected and what actually occurs.  
jejune young 1. Not interesting; dull. 2. Lacking maturity; childish. 3. Lacking in nutrition.  
kinetic having to do with motion Of, relating to, or produced by motion.  
kowtow to be obsequious, to bow and scrape before somebody 1. To kneel and touch the forehead to the ground in expression of deep respect, worship, or submission, as formerly done in China. 2. To show servile deference.  
laissez faire an economic theory popular in the late 1800s and early 1900s characterized by the idea that governments should in no way restrict businesses 1. An economic doctrine that opposes governmental regulation of or interference in commerce beyond the minimum necessary for a free-enterprise system to operate according to its own economic laws. 2. Noninterference in the affairs of others.  
lexicon a vocabulary or dictionary 1. A dictionary. 2. A stock of terms used in a particular profession, subject, or style; a vocabulary.  
loquacious talkative, frenetic Very talkative; garrulous.  
lugubrious sad and morose Mournful, dismal, or gloomy, especially to an exaggerated or ludicrous degree.  
metamorphosis a total change from one state to another, as in the life cycle of an insect 1. Change of physical form, structure, or substance especially by supernatural means. 2. striking alteration in appearance, character, or circumstances.  
mitosis the division of cells 1. A process that takes place in the nucleus of a dividing cell, involves typically a series of steps consisting of prophase, metaphase, anaphase, and telophase, and results in the formation of two new nuclei each having the same number of chromosomes as the parent nucleus; 2. Cell division in which mitosis occurs.  
moiety a part of something 1. A half. 2. A part, portion, or share. 3. Anthropology. Either of two kinship groups based on unilateral descent that together make up a tribe or society.  
nanotechnology really, really tiny robots, like that one episode of Star Trek: TNG The science and technology of building devices, such as electronic circuits, from single atoms and molecules.  
nihilism the belief that one's actions have no effect whatsoever on the world and are therefore meaningless 1. An extreme form of skepticism that denies all existence. 2. A doctrine holding that all values are baseless and that nothing can be known or communicated. 3. Rejection of all distinctions in moral or religious value and a willingness to repudiate all previous theories of morality or religious belief. 4. The belief that destruction of existing political or social institutions is necessary for future improvement. 5. A diffuse, revolutionary movement of mid 19th-century Russia that scorned authority and tradition and believed in reason, materialism, and radical change in society and government through terrorism and assassination.  
nomenclature the proper way of naming things 1. A system of names used in an art or science: the nomenclature of mineralogy. 2. The procedure of assigning names to the kinds and groups of organisms listed in a taxonomic classification: the rules of nomenclature in botany.  
nonsectarian not having to do with religion, secular Not limited to or associated with a particular religious denomination.  
notarize to witness someone's signature To certify or attest to (the validity of a signature on a document, for example) as a notary public.  
obsequious overly eager to please, ass-kissing Full of or exhibiting servile compliance; fawning.  
oligarchy a small ruling party 1.Government by a few, especially by a small faction of persons or families; those making up such a government. 2. A state governed by a few persons.  
omnipotent all-knowing, all-powerful Having unlimited or universal power, authority, or force; all-powerful.  
orthography spelling 1. The art or study of correct spelling according to established usage. 2. The aspect of language study concerned with letters and their sequences in words. 3. A method of representing a language or the sounds of language by written symbols; spelling.  
oxidize to become an oxide, to rust 1. To combine with oxygen; make into an oxide. 2. To increase the positive charge or valence of (an element) by removing electrons. 3. To coat with oxide.  
parabola an arc formed by binomial equations; also the shape of the trajectory of things thrown into the air A plane curve formed by the intersection of a right circular cone and a plane parallel to an element of the cone or by the locus of points equidistant from a fixed line and a fixed point not on the line. this is still totally right. i'd forgotten about the whole conic section thing, though
paradigm a set of beliefs, values, or behaviors 1. One that serves as a pattern or model. 2. A set or list of all the inflectional forms of a word or of one of its grammatical categories: the paradigm of an irregular verb. 3. A set of assumptions, concepts, values, and practices that constitutes a way of viewing reality for the community that shares them, especially in an intellectual discipline.  
parameter constraint, specification 1. A constant in an equation that varies in other equations of the same general form; one of a set of independent variables that express the coordinates of a point. 2. One of a set of measurable factors, such as temperature and pressure, that define a system and determine its behavior and are varied in an experiment. 3. A quantity, such as a mean, that is calculated from data and describes a population.  
pecuniary financial 1. Of or relating to money: a pecuniary loss. 2. Requiring payment of money.  
photosynthesis the process by which plants make food using chlorophyll The process in green plants and certain other organisms by which carbohydrates are synthesized from carbon dioxide and water using light as an energy source. Most forms of photosynthesis release oxygen as a byproduct.  
plagiarize to represent someone else's writing or ideas as one's own 1. To use and pass off (the ideas or writings of another) as one's own. 2. To appropriate for use as one's own passages or ideas from (another).  
plasma the fourth state of matter, in which electrons are shared freely between atoms; also the heaviest part of blood 1. The clear, yellowish fluid portion of blood, lymph, or intramuscular fluid in which cells are suspended. It differs from serum in that it contains fibrin and other soluble clotting elements. 2. Cell-free, sterilized blood plasma, used in transfusions. 3. Protoplasm or cytoplasm. 4. An electrically neutral, highly ionized gas composed of ions, electrons, and neutral particles.  
polymer this is a characteristic of molecules and synthetic substances, but I'm not sure what it is, exactly Any of numerous natural and synthetic compounds of usually high molecular weight consisting of up to millions of repeated linked units, each a relatively light and simple molecule.  
precipitous steep, as in a drop. something that is precipitous could also lead very quickly to other, more dangerous things 1. Resembling a precipice; extremely steep. 2. Having several precipices.  
quasar literally, "quasi-star" an astronomical thingie at the very edges of the universe. An extremely distant, and thus old, celestial object whose power output is several thousand times that of our entire galaxy.  
quotidian using "quote marks" for "emphasis" 1. Everyday; commonplace. 2. Recurring daily. Used especially of attacks of malaria.  
recapitulate this is where "recap" comes from: to quickly go over the details of something 1. To repeat in concise form. 2. To appear to repeat (the evolutionary stages of the species) during the embryonic development of the individual organism.  
reciprocal mutual, something that goes both ways, like a symbiotic relationship 1. Concerning each of two or more persons or things. 2. Interchanged, given, or owed to each other. 3. Performed, experienced, or felt by both sides. 4. Interchangeable; complementary.  
reparation something you might do to make up for a wrong; anglo-saxon culture was very big on this. whenever you killed somebody, you paid their family a set price 1. The act or process of repairing or the condition of being repaired. 2. The act or process of making amends; expiation. 3. Something done or paid to compensate or make amends. 4. Compensation or remuneration required from a defeated nation as indemnity for damage or injury during a war.  
respiration breathing. converting oxygen to carbon dioxide 1. The act or process of inhaling and exhaling; breathing. 2. The act or process by which an organism without lungs, such as a fish or plant, exchanges gases with its environment.  
sanguine friendly, talkative 1. Of the color of blood; red. 2. Of a healthy reddish color; ruddy: a sanguine complexion. 3. Cheerfully confident; optimistic.  
soliloquy a monologue. "To be, or not to be" is the most famous one ever 1. A dramatic or literary form of discourse in which a character talks to himself or herself or reveals his or her thoughts without addressing a listener. 2. A specific speech or piece of writing in this form of discourse. 3. The act of speaking to oneself.  
subjugate to bring under one's control; to take one's rights away 1. To bring under control; conquer. 2. To make subservient; enslave.  
suffragist someone who campaigns for voting rights An advocate of the extension of political voting rights, especially to women.  
supercilious needy, obsequious Feeling or showing haughty disdain.  
tautology a logical argument in the form of p=p; the result is something so obvious, it doesn't even bear arguing 1. Needless repetition of the same sense in different words; redundancy. 2. An instance of such repetition. 3. An empty or vacuous statement composed of simpler statements in a fashion that makes it logically true whether the simpler statements are factually true or false; for example, the statement" Either it will rain tomorrow or it will not rain tomorrow."  
taxonomy the classification of something 1. The classification of organisms in an ordered system that indicates natural relationships. 2. The science, laws, or principles of classification; systematics. 3. Division into ordered groups or categories.  
tectonic having to do with the plates of the earth's crust 1. Relating to, causing, or resulting from structural deformation of the earth's crust. 2. Relating to construction or building. 3. Architectural.  
tempestuous stormy 1. Of, relating to, or resembling a tempest. 2. Tumultuous; stormy.  
thermodynamics the branch of science concerned with patterns of heat and movement 1. Physics that deals with the relationships and conversions between heat and other forms of energy. 2. Thermodynamic phenomena and processes.  
totalitarian a governmental system based on tyranny and oppression in which there is 1 ruler Of, relating to, being, or imposing a form of government in which the political authority exercises absolute and centralized control over all aspects of life, the individual is subordinated to the state, and opposing political and cultural expression is suppressed.  
unctuous argumentative, contrary 1. Characterized by affected, exaggerated, or insincere earnestness). 2. Having the quality or characteristics of oil or ointment; slippery. 3. Containing or composed of oil or fat. 4. Abundant in organic materials; soft and rich: unctuous soil.  
usurp to take for oneself, as in power or political standing 1. To seize and hold (the power or rights of another, for example) by force or without legal authority. 2. To take over or occupy without right: usurp a neighbor's land.3. To take the place of (another) without legal authority; supplant.  
vacuous empty 1. Devoid of matter; empty. 2. Lacking intelligence; stupid. 3. Devoid of substance or meaning; inane. 4. Devoid of expression; vacant. 5. Lacking serious purpose or occupation; idle.  
vehement enthusiastic, forceful 1. Characterized by forcefulness of expression or intensity of emotion or conviction; fervid. 2. Marked by or full of vigor or energy; strong.  
vortex the eye of something swirling, like a galaxy or a flushing toilet 1. A spiral motion of fluid within a limited area, especially a whirling mass of water or air that sucks everything near it toward its center. 2. A place or situation regarded as drawing into its center all that surrounds it.  
winnow to work one's way into something 1. To separate the chaff from (grain) by means of a current of air. 2. To rid of undesirable parts. 3. To blow (chaff) off or away. 4. To blow away; scatter. 5. To blow on; fan: a breeze winnowing the tall grass. 6. To examine closely in order to separate the good from the bad; sift. 7. To separate or get rid of (an undesirable part); eliminate: winnowing out the errors in logic. 8. To sort or select (a desirable part); extract.  
wrought done or made 1. Put together; created: a carefully wrought plan. 2. Shaped by hammering with tools. Used chiefly of metals or metalwork. 3. Made delicately or elaborately.  
xenophobe someone who has an intense dislike of anything foreign A person unduly fearful or contemptuous of that which is foreign, especially of strangers or foreign peoples.  
yeoman an apprentice or layman 1. An attendant, servant, or lesser official in a royal or noble household. 2. A yeoman of the guard. 3. A petty officer performing chiefly clerical duties in the U.S. Navy. 4. An assistant or other subordinate, as of a sheriff. 5. A diligent, dependable worker. 6. A farmer who cultivates his own land, especially a member of a former class of small freeholders in England.  
ziggurat a stepped pyramid of ancient near eastern origin, also figuratively like a flagship A temple tower of the ancient Assyrians and Babylonians, having the form of a terraced pyramid of successively receding stories.  
I knew the words in green; I did not know the words in red. In total, I knew 80 of 100.

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