Thursday, December 31, 2009

Blarmy

Blarmy-n
unintelligent or insincere talk (informal)

vti
to persuade somebody with flattery (informal)

Synonyms
flattery
smooth talk

Monday, December 28, 2009

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Blanch

Blanch-v
1-(vt) to put food in boiling water for a few seconds in order to loosen the skin or kill enzymes
2-(vi) to become pale suddenly
3-(vt) to grow vegetables, especially celery and endive, in dark conditions in order to whiten the stems and improve their flavor
4-(vti) to lose color, or cause something to lose color

Synonyms
go pale
grow pale
lighten
bleach
blench

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Blackmail

Blackmail-n
1-the act of forcing somebody to pay money or do something by threatening to reveal shameful or incriminating facts about him or her.
See also greenmail
See also graymail
2-unfair threatening or incriminating of somebody, as a way of achieving a result

vt
to force somebody to pay money or do something by threatening to reveal shameful or incriminating facts about him or her

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Blackball-vt

Blackball-vt
1-to revent somebody from becoming a member of a club by voting against the person
2-to exclude somebody from a group or profession

n
1-a vote against somebody, especially somebody wanting to join a group
2-a black ball used to show a negative vote (archaic)

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Black Market

Black Market-n
a system of buying and selling officially controlled goods illegally

Bitters

Bitters-n
a slightly alcoholic liquid flavored with plant extracts and used as a mixer with certain cocktails (takes a singular verb)

npl
a bitter-tasting liquid used as a digestive aid

Bishopric

Bishopric-n
1-an area that a bishop is in charge of
2-a place where a bishop's cathedaral is situated
3-the rank or office of a bishop

Synonyms
diocese
see
district
archdiocese

Biped

Biped-n
an animal, for example, a human, with only two legs for locomotion

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Bipartite

Bipartite-adj
1-make or shared by two groups of people
2-used to describe leaves that are almost completely divided into two parts

Friday, December 11, 2009

Bipartisan

Bipartisan-adj
relating to, undertaken by, or including two political parties

Biosphere

Biosphere-n
the whole area of the Earth's surface, atmosphere, and sea that is inhabited by living things
Also called ecosphere

Binomial

Binomial-n
1-a mathematical expression made up of two terms and a plus or minus sign
2-a pair of Latin or Latinized words forming a scientific name in the classification of plants, animals, and microorganims. The first word represents the genus and the second the species

adj
relating to or consisting of tow names, especially the two elements of a scientific name, or two terms, for example, the terms of a mathematical expression

Binary Weapon

Binary Weapon-n
a chemical weapon, for example, a bomb or artillery shell, containing 2 chemicals that are harmless in isolation but combine to form a toxic compound before reaching the target
Also called binary

Binary Star

Binary Star-n
a pair of stars that revolve around their common center of mass under mutual gravitational attraction
Also called binary
Also called double star

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Binary

Binary-adj
1-consisting of two parts or two separate elements
2-used to describe a number system, or a number belonging to it, that has 2 rather than 10 as its base
3-consisting of two different chemical elements only
4-consisting of or using two harmless components that, when combine, become extremely toxic
5-see duple

n
1-the binary number system
2-a binary number or digit
3-binary star
4-see binary weapon

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Bilious

Bilious-adj
1-unsellted in the stomach, as if about to vomit
2-extremely unpleasant to look at
3-bad-tempered and irritable, or indicating this

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Bilateral

Bilateral-adj
1-involving or carried out by two groups, especially the political representatives of two countries
2-relating or or affecting both of two sides

Synonyms
two-sided
mutual
two-pronged
joint
unilateral (antonym)

Bijou

Bijou-n
a small delicate jewel or ornamented object

Bifurcate

Bifurcate-vti
to split or branch of into 2 parts, or split something into two parts

adj
separating or pranching off into two parts

Synonyms
split
fork
divide
diverge
separage
branch off
converge (antonym)

Biennial

Biennial-adj
1-happening every two years
2-used to describe a plant that lives for two years and produces flowers and fruit in the second year

n
1-a plant that lives for two years and produces fruit and flowers in the second year
2-an event that happens every two years

Bicuspid

Bicuspid-adjwith two cusps or points

n
a tooth with two points, especially one of the eight teeth (premolars) that come between the canines and the molars in adult humans

Bicameral

Bicameral-adj
having two separate and distinct lawmaking assemblies, for example, the Senate and the House of Representatives in the United States

Bibliophile

Bibliophile-n
somebody who loves or collects bookss

Bibliography

Bibliography-n
1-a list of books and articles consulted, appearing at the end of a book or other text
2-a list of books and articles on a particular subject
3-a list of the books and articles written by a particular author or issued by a particular publisher
4-the history of books and other publications, and the work of classifying and describing them

Bevy

Bevy-n
1-a group of people
2-a group of animals, especially quail, larks, or roe deer

Synonyms
horde
crowd
throng
flock
multitude
pack
mass
mob

Bevel

Bevel-n
1-a surface that joins another surface at an angle that is not a right angle
2-the angle at which one surface joins another, when this is not a right angle
3-a tool with 2 legs that can be adjusted to make various angles, and used to measure or mark an angle on something
Also called bevel square

vt
to shape the edge of something so that it forms an angle other than a right angle with the main surface

Betatron

Betatron-n
a device that accelerates electrons in a circular orbit by means of a rapidly alternating magnetic field

Betroth

Betroth-vt
to promise to marry somebody, or promise that somebody will marry somebody (formal)

Bestir

Bestir-vr
to begin to do something after a period of inactivity (formal)

Monday, October 26, 2009

Bestial

Bestial-adj
1-lacking normal human feelings of pity or remorse
2-sexual in a depraved or purely physical manner
3-lacking intellect, reason, or culture
4-relating to or characteristic of a beast

Synonyms
foul
inhuman
degrading
cruel
brutish
base
boorish
sordid
repulsive
humane (antonym)

Besotted

Besotted-adj
1-made confused through affection for or attraction to somebody
2-in a confused mental state, especially through having drunk too much alcohol (archaic)

Synonyms
smitten
obsessed
fanatical
head over heels in love
infatuated
love-struck

Besmirch

Besmirch-vt
1-to bring shame or disgrace on somebody's reputation
2-to make something dirty (literary)

Synonyms
defame
slander
sully
tarnish
damage
taint

Besiege

Besiege-vt
1-to surround a city or stronghold with armed forces in order to bring about its surrender or capture
2-to crowd around somebody in an oppressive way (usually passive)

Synonyms
surround
lay
siege to
siege
overwhelm
encircle
blockade

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Beset

Beset-vt (usually passive)
1-to harass or trouble somebody or something continually
2-to attack somebody or something on all sides (formal)
3-to surround or set something with jewels or other ornaments (literary)

Synonyms
overwhelmed
plagued
snowed under
inundated
beleaguered
weighed down

Beseech

Beseech-vt (literary)
1-to ask earnestlyly or beg somebody to do something
2-to ask urgently for something

Synonyms
implore
beg
request
ask
entreat
plead
press
demand

Berth

Berth-n
1-a bed, usually built-in, on a ship or a train
2-a place, usually alongside a quay or dock, where a ship ties up or anchors
3-sufficient room between a ship and the shore or between a ship and another vessel or object to allow the ship to maneuver safely
4-a place for a motor vehicle to park or be loaded or unloaded
5-a job or position of employment (informal

v
1-(vti) to dock or moor a vessel, or be docked or moored
2-(vti) to assign a vessel a place to dock or moore
3-(vt) to assign somebody a berth on a ship or train

Synonyms
come in
tie up
land
moor
disembark

Berserker

Berserker-n
a member of a group of Norse warriors who fought with wild unrestrained aggression
Also called berserk

Berserk

Berserk-adj
extremely aggressive or angry

Synonyms
crazy
mad
out of control
wild
bananas
nuts
crackers
off your rocker
sane (antonym)

Bereave

Bereave-vt
to deprive somebody of a beloved person or a treasured thing, especially through death (often passive)

Berate

Berate-vt
to scold somebody vigorously and lengthily

Synonyms
rebuke
tell off
shout at
criticize
speak angrily to
slate
scold
praise (antonym)

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Bequest

Bequest-n
1-something disposed of in a will
2-something passed down to future generations
3-an act of bequeathing something

Synonyms
inheritance
legacy
gift
donation

Bequeath

Bequeath-vt
1-to leave personal or other property to somebody after death by means of a will
2-to hand something, for example, knowledge or a practice, down to future generations

Synonyms
leave
give
bestow
confer on
donate
hand down
will

Benumb

Benumb-vt
1-to remove the sense of feeling from a faculty or part of the body, especially be exposure to extreme cold
2-to make somebody incapable of activity or thought (usually passive)

Benign

Benign-adj
1-having a kind and gentle or disposition or appearance
2-not a threat to life or long-term health, especially by being noncancerous
3-neutral or harmless in its effect or influence
4-mild or favorable in effect

Synonyms
kind
benevolent
caring
kind
gentle
compassionate
malignant (antonym)

Benevolent

Benevolent-adj
1-showing kindness or goodwill
2-performing good or charitable acts and not seeking to make a profit

Synonyms
kind
caring
compassionate
generous
giving
kindly
benign
munificent
malevolent (antonym)

Benevolence

Benevolence-n
1-an inclination to be kind and helpful or generous
2-something done or given out of kindness
3-a compulsory loan or gift of money imposed by English kings of the late Middle Ages on their subjects

Synonyms
kindness
compassion
generosity
munificence
good will
malevolence (antonym)

Beneficiary

Beneficiary-n
1-somebody who receives a benefit from something
2-somebody who is entitled by a will, trust, or insurance policy to receive money or property
3-a member of the clergy who holds an office that provides a living (benefice)

adj
relating to a church office that provides a living (benefice) or the member of the clergy who holds it

Synonyms
recipient
receiver
benefactor (antonym)

Beneficence

Beneficence-n
1-generosity or cherity
2-a good or charitable act, especially a generous gift
3-the beneficial nature or effect that something has

Benefaction

Benefaction-n
1-an act of doing good
2-a good deed, especially an act of charity
3-a donation given to a charity

Synonyms
support
patronage
investment
backing
sponsorship
aid

Benediction

Benediction-n
1-an expression of approval or good wishes
2-a prayer asking for God's blessing, usually at the end of a service
3-Benediction/benediction in the Roman Catholic Church,k a devotional service during which the congregation is blessed with the Host
4-the state of being blessed

Synonyms
blessing
approval
sanction

Benedictine

Benedictine-n
a monk or nun belonging to a religious order founded by St. Benedict or following his rule

adj
relating to or characteristic of St. Benedict, his rule, or the monastic order that he founded

benedictie

benedicite-n
a blessing or grace used in some Christian religious communities

Benedicite

Benedicite-n
a Latin hymn beginning "Benedicite omnia opera Domini Domino," traditionally translated as "O all ye works of the Lord, bless ye the Lord"

Bemuse

Bemuse-vt
to cause somebody to be confused or puzzled

Synonyms
confuse
bewilder
puzzle
perplex
muddle

Bemoan

Bemoan-vt
to express grief or disappointment about something

Synonyms
lament
bewail
regret
mourn
complain about
moan about
grumble about
applaud (antonym)

Belligerent

Belligerent-n
1-see belligerence
2-the state of being at war

Belligerence

Belligerence-n
the quality of being hostile, ready to start a fight, or ready to go to war

Synonyms
violence
hostility
anger
violent behavior
antagonism

Bellicose

Bellicose-adj
ready or inclined to quarrel, fight, or go to war

Synonyms
belligerent
aggressive
warlike
pugnacious
combative
confrontational
argumentative
quarrelsome

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Belladonna

Belladonna-n
1-an extremely poisonous Eurasian plant with drooping purplish flowers and small black berries. Latin name: Atropa belladonna
Also called deadly nightshade
U.S. term deadly nightshade
2-a drug, for example, atropine or hyoscyamine, that is made from belladonna

Belie

Belie-vt
1-to disguise the true nature of something
2-to show that something is not true or real

Synonyms
contradict
disprove
give the lie to

Belfry

Belfry-n
1-the part of a church steeple or a tower in which bells are hung
2-a tower on a building, in which a bell or bells are hung

Beleaguer

Beleaguer-vt (usually passive)
1-to make somebody feel harassed, hemmed in, or under severe pressure
2-to surround somebody or something with an army

Synonyms
bother
annoy
harass
worry
disturb
delight (antonym)

Belabor

Belabor-vt
1-to repeat something unnecessarily, or discuss it at too great a length or in too much detail
2-to subject somebody to a sustained verbal or literary attack (literary)
3-to hit somebody hard and repeatedly with something (literary or humorous)

Synonyms
dwell on
overstress
ignore (antonym)

Beholden

Beholden-adj
under an obligation to somebody because of something helpful that person has done

Synonyms
obliged
grateful
in somebody's debt
indebted

Behest

Behest-n
an order or request (formal)

Synonyms
request
command
order
will

Behemoth

Behemoth-n
1-behemoth/Behemoth a huge beast referred to in the Bible, usually thought to be a hippopotamus (Job 40:15)
2-something that is enormously big or powerful

Beggarly

Beggarly-adj
insufficiant and showing stinginess

Beguile

Beguile-vt
1-to win, and hold somebody's attention, interest, or devotion
2-to mislead or deceive somebody (literary)
3-to rob somebody of something (literary)
4-to pass time in a pleasant way (literary)

Synonyms
entice
lure
woo
charm
captivate
mesmerize
fascinate
enthrall
put under a spell
appeal to
attract

Befuddle

Befuddle-vt
1-to make somebody confused or perplexed
2-to make somebody inebriated and unable to think clearly

Synonyms
confuse
confound
muddle
mix up
bewilder
baffle
puzzle
stupefy
perplex
stump
flummox
nonplus
enlighten (antonym)
instruct (antonym)

Befoul

Befoul-vt
to make something dirty or impure, or diminish somebody or something's moral purity or reputation (archaic or literary)

Synonyms
pollute
contaminate
dirty
soil
foul
clean (antonym)

Befall

Befall-vti
to happen, or happen to somebody, especially through the unexpected workings of chance or fate (archaic or literary)

Synonyms
happen
ensue
occur
take place
come about
transpire
come to pass

Beech

Beech-n
1-a tall tree found in temperate regions that has smooth gray bark, glossy leaves, and nuts enclosed in spiny cases. Genus: Fagus
2-the wood of the beech tree, used especially for furniture

Friday, September 11, 2009

Bedlam

Bedlam-n
1-a place or situation full of noise, frenzied activity, and confusion
2- a psychatric hospital (archaic, offensive in some contexts)

Synonyms
mayhem
chaos
pandamonium
confusion
anarchy
disorder
disarray
turmoil
cootion
uproar
order (antonym)

Bedevil

Bedevil-vt
to be a continual source of problems or irritation to something or somebody

Becloud

Becloud-vt (literary)
1-to cover or conceal something wit hcloud or mist
2-to make something confused or difficult to understand

Bedazzle

Bedazzle-vt (literary)
1-to astonish somebody by being immediately impressive (usually passive)
2-to make somebody temporarily unable to see by shining a bright light

Beau

Beau-n
1-a boyfriend or male admirer (dated)
2-a man always smartly dressed in the most fashionable clothes (archaic)

Beatitude

Beatitude-n (literary)
1-the perfect happiness and inner peace supposed to be enjoyed by the soul in ehaven
2-extreme happiness and serenity

Beatitude

Beatitude-n
1-each of teh sayings of Jesus Christ in the Sermon on the Mount about the 8 groups of people who will recieve blessing in heaven (Matthew 5:3-11)

Beatific

Beatific-adj (literary)
1-expressing or radiating great happiness and serenity
2-bringing or expressing the perfect happiness and inner peace supposed to be enjoyed by the soul in heaven

Synonyms
innocent
good
pure
saintly
adorable
virtuous
wicked (antonym)

Friday, September 4, 2009

Bearish

Bearish-adj
1-moving or behaving roughly or clumsily
2-surly or ill-tempered toward people
3-conductive to or characterized by selling rather than buying stocks or commodities in anticipation of falling prices
4-anticipating unfavorable business conditons

Bayon

Bayon-n
in the southern United States, an area of slow-moving water, often overgrown with reeds, leading from a river or lake

Synonyms
swamp
swampland
marsh
marshland
everglade
wetlands
bog

Bawdy

Bawdy-adj
ribald in a frank, humorous, and often crude way

Synonyms
crude
vulgar
rude
lewd
refined (anotonym)

Bauble

Bauble-n
1-something that is small and decorative but of little real value
2-a mock scepter of office carried by a court jester (archaic)

Synonyms
trinket
trifle
glass decoration
costume jewelry
ornament
paste jewelry

Batty

Batty-adj
slightly eccentric (informal)

Synonyms
crazy
loony
loopy
nutty
nuts
mad
eccentric
not in your right mind
sane (antonym)

Bawd

Bawd-n
1-a woman who runs a brothel
2-a prostitute

Batten

Batten-n
1-a thin flexible strip of wood or plastic inserted in pockets at the edge of a sail to keep it taut and flat
2-a narrow metal or wooden slat used to fasten down the edges of a tarpaulin coverign a ship's raised hatch in poor weather
3-a row of lights in a theater, or the strip or bar that holds it

vt
to provide, strengthen, or secure something with battens

Synonyms
strip of wood
board
slat
plank
bar
block
panel

Batiste

Batiste-n
a fine soft plain-woven fabric made of cotton or linen, used especially for clothing

Batik/battik

Batik/battik n
1-a method of hand-printing a fabric by covering with removable wax the parts that will not be dyed
2-fabric that has been hand-dyed by the batik method
3-a design produced by batik

Bastion

Bastion-n
1-somebody or something regarded as providing strong defense or support, especially for a belief or cause, or a place where there are such people
2-a fortified place
3-a projecting part of a wall, rampart, or other fortification

Synonyms
stronghold
mainstay
fortress
citadel

Thursday, August 27, 2009

Bas-relief

Bas-relief-n
1-a type of sculpture in which the design projects slightly from a flat background, but without any part being totally detached from the background
Also called basso-relievo
Also called basso-rilievo
Also called low relief
Also called high relief
2-an example or piece of bas-relief sculpture

Basilica

Basilica-n
1-A Roman Catholic church or cathedral given ceremonial privileges by the Pope
2-a type of Ancient Roman building that had a central nave with an aisle on each side formed by 2 rows of columns, and typically a terminal semicircular apse
3-a Christian church building forme out of a Roman basilica or built to a similar design

Synonyms
church
cathedral
minster

Bashful

Bashful-adj
shy, self-conscious, or modest

Synonyms
shy
self-conscius
coy
withdrawn
timid
blushing
reserved
forward (antonym)

Basal

Basal-adj
1-at or forming the bottom of something
2-basic or fundamental

Barter

Barter-v
1-(vti) to exchange goods or services in return for other goods or services
2-(vi) to negotiate or argue over teh terms of a transaction

n
1-the practice or system of bartering
2-goods or services that are bartered

Synonyms
exchange
trade
switch
swap
negotiate
bargain
haggle

Barrister

Barrister-n
1. U.K. a lawyer who is qualified to represent clients in the higher law courts in England and Wales
2. Canada a lawyer who represents clients in any law court in Canada

Barrage

Barrage-n
1-a long continous burst of gunfire
2-a rapid attacking outpouring of something
3-an artificial barrier built across a river or canal to provide water or prevent flooding

vt
1-to attack an enemy with rapid and continuous gunfire
2-to subject somebody to a relentless onslaught

Synonyms
bombardment
salvo
volley

Barracks

Barracks-n (takes a singular or plural verb)
1-a building used to accomodate military personnel
2-any temporary accomodation

Synonyms
quarters
garrison
camp
billet

Baroque

Baroque-n
1-a highly ornamental style of European architecture and art that lasted from the mid 16th to the early 18th centuries, or this period in European history
2-classical music of the 17th century, the period of such composers as Purcell, Vivaldi, and Telemann

Synonyms
ornate
decorative
elaborate
rococo
plain (antonym)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Baroque

Baroque-adj
1-bizarre or highly exaggerated in style
2-in the Baroque style of art or architecture

Synonyms
ornate
decorative
elaborate
rococo
plain (antonym)

Baronage

Baronage-n
1-barons considered collectively
2-a baron's rank or position

Barnacle Goose

Barnacle Goose-n
a wild goose found in northern Europe and Greenland that has gray wings and a black-and-white head and body
Latin name: Branta leucopsis

Barnacle

Barnacle-n
1-a small marine organism with a shell that clings to rocks and ships and draws food by using slender hairs (cirri) Subclass: corripedia
2-see barnacle goose
3-a clinging or dependent person or thing

Barker (2)

Barker-n
a person or machine that strips bark off trees and logs or prepares bark for tanning

Barker (1)

Barker-n
1-somebody who stands outside the entrance to a fiar, carnival, or other place of enternaitment and shouts out its attractions
2-a dog that barks, especially on that barks a lot

Barge

Barge-n
1-a long narrow flat-bottomed boat used for transporting freight on rivers or canals
2-a large open boat used during ceremonies
3-a motorboat used by a high-ranking naval officer for ceremonial occasions

v
1-(vti) to move roughly, colliding with other people
2-(vti) to push somebody or something roughly
3-(vt) to transport freight by horse

Bard (2)

Bard-n
a piece of armor for a horse

vt
1-to put a bard on a horse
2-to cover meat with fat before roasting it to prevent it from drying out

Bard (1)

Bard-n
1-in ancient Celtic culture, a poet who composed and recited epic poems describing important events
2-a poet, especially on of national importance (literary or humorous)

Synonyms
poet
writer
lyricist
rhymester
versifier

Barbarous

Barbarous-adj
1-showing extreme cruelty
2-characterized by an uncivilized culture
3-lacking sophistication or refinement
4-using ungrammatical language

Barbarity

Barbarity-n
1-a cruel act
2-a primitive or uncivilized condition

Barb (3)

Barb-n
a barbiturate (slang)

Barbarism

Barbarism-n
1-a cruel or brutal act
2-the uncivilized nature of a culture or civilization
3-a word or expression considered to be grammatically incorrect
4-something that breaks rules of convention or good taste

Barb (2)

Barb-n
a horse belonging to a breed originally from North Africa, noted for speed and stamina

Barb (1)

Barb-n
1-a sharp point facing away from the head of an arrow, fish hook, or harpoon, designed to make it difficult to remove
2-a pointed or wounding remark
3-a small fish often kept in aquariums. Genara: Barbus Puntius
4-a white cloth headdress covering the chin and throat, worn by women in the Middle Ages
5-a stiff filament that forms the framework of a feather. The barbs stick out on each side of the main shaft.
6-a growth on an animal's head like a beard or whisker.
7-a hooked projection on some plants and fruits

vt
to provide something with a barb or barbs

Synonyms
gibe
insult
dig
taunt
cutting remark
sting

Bantamweight/bantom

Bantamweight/bantom-n
1-a professional boxer weighing 112-118 pounds, or an amateur weighing 112-119 pounds
2-a wrestler weighing 115-126 pounds

Bantam

Bantam-n
1-a bird belonging to a breed of small domestic fowl
2-see bantam weight
3-Canada in hockey and softball, a category of players from 13 to 15 years of age, or a player in this category

Banshee

Banshee-n
1-in Gaelic folklore, a spirit of a woman who appears, wailing, to signal that somebody in the household is going to die
2-Ireland a female fairy

Synonyms
phantom
spirit
ghoul
specter
poltergeist

Thursday, August 20, 2009

Bane

Bane-n
1-something that continually causes problems or misery
2-something that causes death, destruction, or ruin (literary or archaic)
3-a fatal poison (often used in combination in the names of poisonous plants)

Synonyms
nuisance
pest
blight
curse
bother
irritation
annoyance

Bandy

Bandy-vt
to toss words back and forth casually often without caring whether they are true or what effect they may have

adj
used to describe legs that curve outward so that the knees cannot meet

Banal

Banal-adj
boringly ordinary and lacking in originality

Synonyms
commonplace
trite
hackneyed
prosaic
predictable
ordinary
dull
boring
cliched
trivial
facile
original (antonym)

Baluster

Baluster-n
1-an upright post supporting a handrail, for example, in the banister of a staircase
2-a support, for example, a chair leg or the stem of a glass, that is shaped like a long narrow vase

Balsam

Balsam-n
1-an oily resinous substance (oleoresin) obtained from plants, especially one containing benzoic acid or cinnamic acid, that is used in making perfume and medicine
2-a preparation containing or resembling balsam
3-a plant of the family that includes impatiens and garden balsam. Family: Balsaminaceae

Synonyms
ointment
cream
balm
liniment
unguent

Balsa

Balsa-n
1-a South American tree that yields a lightweight softwood. Genus: Ochroma
2-balsa/balsa wood a lightweight wood obtained from the balsa tree, used in making rafts and doy models and as insulation

Ballyhoo

Ballyhoo-n
1-sensational, lound, or sustained advertising
2-a noisy argument or disturbance

vt
to advertise or publicize something loudly and insistently

Synonyms
uproar
to-do
racket
hullabaloo
commotion
ruckus

Balky

Balky-adj
difficult and uncooperative

Ballistics

Ballistics-n
1-the study of the movements and forces involved in the propulsion of objects through the air (takes a singular verb)
2-the study of firearms and ammunition (takes a singular verb)
3-the characteristics of a firearm that affect the way missiles are fired (takes a singular or plural verb)

Balk/baulk

Balk/baulk-v
1-to stop suddenly and refuse to go on, especially when faced with an obstacle
2-to hesitate or be unwilling to do something, usually because of a natural revulsion or moral scruples
3-to refuse to deal with something that presents a difficulty
4-to prevent somebody from carrying out a plan or intention (often passive)
5-to make an illegial motion in baseball, by pretending to pitch but not actually pitching

n
1-a large squared piece of wood
2-a wooden tie beam in the roof of a house
3-a ridge of land left unplowed to serve as a boundary or to counter erosion
4-an illegal motion by the pitcher when there are runners on base
5-something that hinders or frustrates
6-the area between the balk line and the bottom cushion on a billiard table, or in balk-line billiards between and balk line and the cushion

Synonyms
recoil
start
cringe
shy away
draw back

Baldric

Baldric-n
a sash or belt worn from one shoulder to the opposite hip, used to support a sword

Baleen

Baleen-n
a horny substance that grows as fringed plates from the upper jaws of certain whales, acting to strain food, especially small crustaceans, from the water.
Also called whalebone

Balderdash

Balderdash-n
senseless or pointless talk or writing

Synonyms
nonsense
baloney
twaddle
garbage
rubbish
tripe
drivel
claptrap
sense (antonym)

Balalaika

Balalaika-n
a Russian musical instrument with a triangular sound box and three strings that produces sounds similar to a mandolin when plucked or strummed

Baksheesh

Baksheesh-n
in the Middle East, money given as a tip or bribe, or as charity

Bailiwick

Bailiwick-n
an area of activity in which somebody has particular responsibility, or in which he or she has specialized knowledge or ability

Baguette

Baguette-n
1-a long thin loaf of French bread
2-a gem cut into a long rectangular shape
3-the long narrow rectangular shape that a baguette gem is cut into
4-a small narrow rounded convex molding on a wall or column

Bagatelle

Bagatelle-n
1-a short piece of classical music, usually for piano, written in a playful style
2- a game played on a board or table, in which balls have to be propelled by a cue or spring-loaded launcher past obstacles and into numbered holes
3-a thing of little importance (formal)

Badinage

Badinage-n
the exchange of playful or joking remarks between people in conversation

Baffle

Baffle-vt
1-to prove too difficult or complicated for somebody to understand, solve, or deal with, and cause a feeling of confusion or helplessness
2-to hinder or thwart an action or intention (formal)
3-to impede or control the movement of a fluid or gas or the emission of sound or light waves

n
1-a device used to control or impede the flow or emission of something and reduce its force
2-a partition in a loudspeaker or microphone intended to prevent sound waves of different frequencies from interfering with one another

Synonyms
confuse
perplex
puzzle
flummox
stump
nonplus
mystify
confound
bewilder
bemuse
befuddle

Bactericide

Bactericide-n
a substance or agent that destroys bacteria

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Backwater

Backwater-n
1-a still body of water connected to a river but not affected by its current
2-a still body of water held back by a dam, obstruction, or prevailing countercurrent
3-a place or situation regarded as cut off from the mainstream of activity or development and consequently seen as quiet and uneventful or unimportant and dull

Synonyms
remote place
the boondocks
teh backwoods
the back of beyond
the sticks
the middle of nowhere

Backer

Backer-n
1-somebody who gives moral or financial support to somebody or something
2-somebody who bets on somebody or something

Synonyms
sponsor
supporter
patron
promoter
benefactor
financier
champion

Babel

Babel-n (literary)
1-a confused noise, especially the noise of loud unintelligible voices all talking at once
2-a scene or place of noisy confusion

Bacchanal

Bacchanal-n
1-somebody who took part in the orgiastic rites of the god Bacchus
2-a riotus drunken reveler (literary)
3-a noisy drunken celebration or spree (literary)

adj
relating to Bacchus or the worship of Bacchus

Babble

Babble-v
1-to say something rapidly and incoherently without pausing, usually because of excitement or fear
2-to talk rapidly or at length in a way people find irrelevant
3-to make a continuous low murmuring or bubbling sound
4-to reveal something thoughtlessly or impulsively that is supposed to be secret or confidential

n
1-the sound of voices speaking too excitedly and rapidly to be heard properly
2-irrelevant chatter
3-the low continuous murmuring or bubbling sound made by weater as it flows along

Synonyms
jabber
gibber
prattle
talk nonsense
blather
chat

Azoic

Azoic-adj
1-belonging to a geologic period before the appearance of living organisms on Earth
2-without any trace of life or organic remains

Axiom

Axiom-n
1-a statement or idea that people accept as self-evidently true
2-a basic proposition of a system that, athough unproven, is used to prove the other propositions in the system

Synonyms
maxim
adage
saying
saw
proverb
truism

Axial

Axial-adj
1-relating to or forming an axis
2-located on or in the plane of an axis of a crystal
3-located in or relating to the axis of an organism

Axiology

Axiology-n
the study of the nature, types, and governing criteria of values and value judgments

Awry

Awry-adj
1-not in the proper position but turned or twisted to one side
2-not in keeping with plans or expectations

Synonyms
skewed
askew
crooked
off beam
out of kilter
twisted
off-center

Awn

Awn-n
a plastic, canvas, or metal porch or shade supported by a frame and often foldable, that is placed over a storefront, doorway, window, or side of a recreational vehicle

Synonyms
canopy
sunshade
sun shelter
blind

Awestruck/awestricken

Awestruck/awestricken-adj
filled with a feeling of awe

Synonyms
enthralled
fascinated
rapt
captivated
mesmerized

Awl

Awl-n
a tool consisting of a handle and a slim metal shaft wit ha sharp point, used for punching small holes in leather or wood

Synonyms
tool
bit
bradawl
borer

Awe

Awe-n
1-a feeling of amazement and respect mixed with fear that is often couple with a feeling of personal insignificance or powerlessness
2-the ability to inspire dread or reverence (archaic)

vt
to make somebody feel awe (usually passive)

Synonyms
fear
terror
dread
fright
trepadition
fearfulness

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Avuncular

Avuncular-adj
1-resembling an uncle, especially one who is friendly, helpful, or good-humored
2-relating to or deriving from an uncle (formal or humorous)

Avowal

Avowal-n
a frank statement or admission (formal)

Synonyms
affirmation
statement
confirmation
acknowledgement
admission
denial (antonym)

Avow

Avow-vt
to state or affirm that something is a fact (formal)

Synonyms
affirm
state
confirm
declare
admit
acknowledge
maintain
aver
deny (antonym)

Avoirdupois Weight

Avoirdupois Weight-n
a system for measuring weights based on the pound

Avoirdupois

Avoirdupois-n
1-see avoirdupois weight
2-the amount that somebody weighs (humorous)

Avocation

Avocation-n
1-a calling or occupation (formal)
2-a hobby or pastime (formal)
3-something that distracts or diverts somebody from what he or she is doing (archaic)

Avid

Avid-adj
eager for, dedicated to, or enthusiastic about something

Synonyms
keen
enthusiastic
passionate
eager
devoted
ardent
fervent
lukewarm (antonym)
apathetic (antonym)

Aversion

Aversion-n
1-a strong feeling of dislike or hatred of somebody or something (formal)
2-somebody or something strongly disliked

Synonyms
dislike
hatred
loathing
repugnance
distaste
hate
liking (antonym)

Averse

Averse-adj
1-strongly opposed to or disliking something (formal)
2-used to describe a leaf or flower that is turned away from the main stem or axis

Synonyms
reluctant
disinclined
loath
indisposed
unenthusiastic
inclined (antonym)

Aver

Aver-vt
1-to assert or allege something confidently (formal)
2-to state or allege that something is true

Synonyms
avow
state
claim
declare
assert
affirm
profess
swear
refute (antonym)

Avatar

Avatar-n
1-an incarnation of a Hindu diety in human or animal form, especially one of the incarnations of Vishnu such as Rama and Krishna
2-a movable three-dimensional image that can be used to represent somebody in cyberspace, for example, an Internet user

Avarice

Avarice-n
an unreasonably strong desire to obtain and keep money

Synonyms
greed
greediness
materialism
covetousness
acquisitiveness
avariciousness
cupidity
generocity (antonym)

Avant-Garde

Avant-Garde-n
writers, artists, filmmakers, or musicians whose work is innovative, experimental, or unconventional

adj
1-artistically new, experimental, or unconventional
2-belonging to the artistically inovative

Synonyms
ultramodern
activist
forward-thinking
advanced
ahead of its time
way-out
far-out
futuristic
forward-looking
modern

Avail

Avail-v
1-(vr) to make use of something useful or helpful while you have the opportunity
2-(vti) to be helpful or useful to somebody or to help somebody succeed

n
help, advantage, or success in achieving something (use in negative statements)

npl-Avails
profits or proceeds from something (archaic)

Synonyms
benefit
advantage
reward
gain
purpose
aim

Auxiliary Verb

Auxiliary Verb-n
a verb that is used with another verb to indicate person, number, mood, tense, or aspect. Some auxiliary verbs in English are "be," "have," "will," and "do."

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Auxiliary

Auxiliary-adj
1-acting to support or supplement a group of people
2-available as backup for a system, process, or piece of equipment
3-secondary to something larger
4-used to describe a boat with an engine to supplement or replace the sails

n
1-somebody who or something that acts in a supporting, backup, or supplementary role
2-see auxiliary verb
3-a member of a separate troop, often from another country, that fights with an army as allies or mercenaries and has its own command structure (often used in the plural)
4-a sailing ship equipped with an engine
5-a naval vessel, for example, a tug or transport ship, that does not engage in combat

Synonyms
supplementary
secondary
support
backup
supporting
assisting
main (antonym)

Autonomy

Autonomy-n
1-political independence and self-government
2-personal independence and the capacity to make moral decisions and act on them
3-the status of a text as an aesthetic object not to be judged or commented on in the light of external knowledge, for example, of the biography of the author

Synonyms
independence
self-sufficiency
self-rule
self-government
sovereignty
dependence (antonym)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Autonomous

Autonomous-adj
1-politically independent and self-governing
2-able to make decisions and act on them as a free and independent moral agent
3-existing, reacting, or developing as an independent, self-regulating organism

Synonyms
independent
self-directed
self-sufficient
self-governing
sovereign
self-ruling
dependent (antonym)

Autonomic

Autonomic-adj
1-used to describe functions of the nervous system not under the voluntary control of the individual, for example, the regulation of heartbeat or gland secretions
2-used to describe an action or response that occurs without conscious control
3-produced or caused by internal stimuli

Automaton

Automaton-n
1-a machine that contains its own power source and can perform a complicated series of actions, including responses to external stimuli, without human intervention
2-somebody who resembles a machine by obeying instructions automatically, performing repetetive actions, or showing no emotion

Synonyms
robot
machine
android

Autocrat

Autocrat-n
1-a ruler who holds unlimited power and is answerable to no other person
2-somebody who dominates other people

Synonyms
dictator
absulute ruler
tyrant
despot

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Autocracy

Autocracy-n
1-a government in which somebody holds unlimited power
2-the unlimited political power of a single ruler
3-a country governed by a single ruler who has unlimited power

Synonyms
dictatorship
monarchy
despotism
tyranny
democracy (antonym)

Authoritarian

Authoritariarn-adj
1-favoring strict rules and established authority
2-belonging to or believing in a political system in which obedience to the ruling person or group is strongly enforced

n
1-somebody who favors or maintains strict rules and obedience to authority
2-somebody who favors or belongs to a political system in which obedience to authority is strongly enforced

Austere

Austere-adj
1-imposing or suggesting physical hardship
2-grimly unsmiling, humorless, or suggesting strict self-denial
3-plain and simple, without luxury or self-indulgence
4-severly plain in design in lines, without distractions or decorations

Synonyms
severe
strict
stern
grave
sober
ascetic
serious
rigorous

Auspicious

Auspicious-adj
marked by lucky signs or good omens, and therefore by the promise of success or happiness

Synonyms
favorable
promising
positive
fortunate
propitious
lucky
good
inauspicious (antonym)

Auspice

Auspice-n
a sign or token for the future, especially a happy or promising one

npl-auspices
the help or supoort of a person or organization

Ausculate

Ausculate-vt
to listen to various sounds made by a patient's internal organs, usually with the help of a stethoscope, in order to make a diagnosis

Auricle

Auricle-n
1-the part of the external ear that projects outward from the head
Also called pinna
2-an ear-shaped muscular part that sticks out from the surface of each upper chamber (atrium) of the heart
3-an atrium of the heart (dated)

Auriferous

Auriferous-adj
used to describe rock or minerals that contain gold

Aureate

Aureate-adj
1-gold, gilded, golden, or gold-colored
2-expressed or written in a highly or excessively ornameted, florid, or elaborate style

Augury

Augury-n
1-the art, activity, prophecies, or pronouncements of an augur, soothsayer, or diviner
2-an indication of what will happen in the future

Synonyms
omen
sign
resage
warning
indication
signal
threat

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Augur

Augur-n
1-a religious official in ancient Rome who interpreted natural phenomena, such as the flight of birds, as signs that the dieties favored or disapproved of actions propose by the city
2-any soothsayer, prophet, or diviner

vt
to suggest or indicate what will happen in the future

Synonyms
bode
promise
portend
foretell
predict

Augment

Augment-v
1-(vti) to grow, or to increase something in number, amount size, strength, or intensity (formal)
2-(vt) in music, to enlarge a perfect or major interval by a semitone

n
in Greek or Sanskrite grammar, a vowel prefixed to a verb, or added to its initial vowel so as to lengthen it into a diphthong, to form a past tense

Synonyms
supplement
add to
enlarge
expand
enhance
increase
boost
bump up
diminish (antonym)

Auger

Auger-n
a hand tool with a corkscrew-shaped bit for boring holes, or a larger tool, using the same principle, for boring holes in the ground

Auditory

Auditory-adj
relating to the sense, organs, or process of hearing

Synonyms
aural
hearing
accoustic
audio

Auditor

Auditor-n
1-somebody who is qualified to audit accounts or to conduct an audit of a department or organization
2-a student who attends a class without asking for or receiving graduation credit
3-a hearer or listener, for example, a member of an audience or somebody listening to somebody who is talking

Synonyms
assessor
examiner
inspector

Audit

Audit-n
1-a formal examination, correction, and official endorsing of financial accounts, especially those of a business, undertaken annually by an accountant
2-a systematic check or assessment, especially of the efficiency or effectiveness of an organization or department, typically carried out by an independent assessor

vt
1-to carry out an audit of the financial accounts of a business, department, or organization to establish accuracy or efficiency
2-to attend a class without asking for or receiving graduation credit for it, usually attending all the sessions but not doing the assignments

Synonyms
review
appraisal
check
inventory
inspection
examination
assessment

Andiophile

Andiophile-n
somebody who has an enthusiam for sound reproduction, especially hig-fidelity recordings or broadcasts of music

Audacious

Audacious-adj
bold, daring, or fearless, especially in challenging assumptions or conventions

Synonyms
daring
bold
brave
overconfident
risky
impudent
foolhardy
cowardly (antonym)

Au Courant

Au Courant-adj
abreast of the latest developments

SYnonyms
chic
stylish
smart
designer
in hip
up-to-the-minute
the latest thing
trendy
cool
happening
in vogue
modish
a la mode
up to date
modern

Atypical

Atypical-adj
not conforming to the usual type or expected pattern

Synonyms
uncharacteristic
weird
out of character
peculiar
out of the ordinary
out of the usual run of things
nonconforming
different
unusual
uncommon
strange
odd
abnormal
typical (antonym)

Attune

Attune-vt
to adjust or accustom something to become receptive or responsive to something else

Attrition

Attrition-n
1-the wearing away of a surface, typically by friction or abrasion
2-the gradual wearing away of morale and the powers of resistance by persistent attacks
3-the gradual reduction of the size of a workforce by not replacing personnel lost through retirement or resignation
4-remorse for sin typically engendered by the fear of damnation

Synonyms
abrasion
slow destruction
erosion
wear and tear
eating away
gnawing away
wearing away
grinding down

Attribute

Attribute-vt
1-to think of something as caused by a particular circumstance
2-to give credit for a certain thing, such as a work of art or literature, or a saying, to a perticualr person, often wrongly
3-to regard somebody or something as having particular qualities

n
a quality, property, or characteristic of somebody or something

Synonyms
quality
characteristic
trait
feature
point
power
aspect
element
part

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

Attenuated

Attenuated-adj
long, narrow, and sometimes tapering

Attest

Attest-vit
1-to show that something exists or is true or valid
2-to state that something is true, especially in a formal written statement

Synonyms
show
confirm
be evidence of
verify
bear out
demonstrate
make plain
prove
indicate
disprove (antonym)

Attenuate

Attenuate-v
1-(vti) to reduce the size, strength, or density of something, or to become thinner, weaker, or less dense
2-(vt) to reduce the virulence of a bacterium or virus, for example, by exposing it to heat or producing a culture of it in a special medium

Synonyms
satisfy
assuage
calm
sooth
ease
intensify (antonym)

Attar/atar

Attar/atar-n
essential oil extracted from flowers, especially the oil extracted from the rose petals.
Also called dotto

Synonyms
essence
perfume
extract
scented oil
essential oil
ditillate

Attainder

Attainder-n
in former times, the removal of the rights or the confiscation of the property of somebody outlawed or sentenced to death for a serious crime, often treason

Attache

Attache-n
somebody on the staff of a diplomatic mission who has responsibilities in a specific area

Synonyms
civil servant
ambassador
envy
representative
cultural attache
military attache
public servant

Monday, June 29, 2009

Atrophy

Atrophy-n
1-the shrinking in size of some part or organ of the body, usually caused by injury, disease, or lack of use
2-weakening or lessening of some ability

vi
to weaken or waste away through disuse or the effects of disease

Synonyms
waste away
shrivel
waste
degenerate
wither
deteriorate
weaken

Atrocious

Atrocious-adj
1-appallingly bad
2-extremely evil or cruel
3-so ugly in taste or appearance as to elicit revulsion

Synonyms
terrible
appalling
fearful
dreadful
awful
frightful
horrible
forrific
horrendous
hideous
ghastly
wonderful (antonym)

Atrium

Atrium-n
1-a central hall usually with a glass roof or skylight and extending the full height or several stories of a building
2-the open central courtyard of an ancient Roman house
3-a cavity or chamber of the body, especially one of the upper chambers of the heart that takes blood from the veins and pumps it into a ventricle

Synonyms
entrance hall
foyer
reception areal
hall
vestibule
entrance
porch

Atonement

Atonement-n
1-to making of reparationfor a sin or a mistake
2-atonement or Atonement in Christian belief, the reconciliation between God and people brought about bythe death of Jesus Christ

Synonyms
compensation
amends
pentinence
penance
punishment
expiation
apology
reparation
recompense

Atonality

Atonality-n
in music, the fact of consisting of notes that are not related by any mode or key
see also tonality

Atone

Atone-vi
to make reparation for a sin or a mistake (formal)

Synonyms
in agreement
in concurence
in harmony
agreed
in disagreement (antonym)

Atomize

Atomize-v
1-vt to reduce something to atoms or separate something into free atoms
2-vt to destroy something with atomic weapons
3-vti to convert a liquid into fine particles or to spray particles converted in this way

Atmospherics

Atmospherics-n
the study of electromagnetic radiation emanating from natural sources in the atmosphere (takes a singular verb)

npl (takes a plural verb)
1-static on a radio or flickering white spots (snow) on a television screen caused by electromagnet radiation from natural sources in the atmosphere
also called sferics
2-the mood or atmosphere suffusing a situation, group, or place

Atilt

Atilt-adj
in or into a slanting position

Athwart

Athwart-prep
1-so as to be across or positioned crosswise over something
2-so as to oppose or obstruct something

Synonyms
crossways
crosswise
transversely
diagonally
from corner to corner

Ataxia

Ataxia-n
inability to coordinate to movements of muscles

Atelier

Atelier-n
a studio or workshop where an artist works

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Atavism

Atavism-n
1-the recurrence of a genetically controlled feature in an organism after it has been absent for several generations, usually because of an accidental recomination of genes
2-an individual showing atavism. Also called atavist

Asymmetry

Asymmetry-n
1-the condition of being asymmetrical in arrangement. Also called dissymmetry
2-a relation between two things where the first has a relation to the second, but the second cannot have the same relation to the first

Synonyms
irregularity
lop-sidedness
unevenness
symmetry (antonym)

Asunder

Asunder-adv
into separate parts, pieces, or places (formal)

Astute

Astute-adj
shrewd and discerning, especially where personal benefit is to be derived

Synonyms
shrewd
incisive
perspicacious
smart
wise
of good judgment
intelligent
perceptive
sharp
judicious
clever
stupid (antonym)