English Vocabulary

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High School Vocabulary

Here I have different levels of vocabulary set up in groups. You should try to learn atleast 1 group of words evey couple of days, if possible. Listen and read along to the words and their meanings first.  Along with each group of words are links to taking either an on-line quiz or a downloadable quiz.

Level 1

Group 1

Abhor                hate                                                     

Bigot                  narrow-minded, prejudiced person          

Counterfeit        fake; false                                           

Enfranchise        give voting rights                                 

Hamper              hinder; obstruct                                    

Kindle                 to start a fire                                         

Noxious              harmful; poisonous; lethal                      

Placid                 calm; peaceful                                       

Remuneration    payment for work done                         

Talisman            lucky charm                 
Group 1

Group 2

Abrasive          rough; coarse; harsh                                         

Bilk                  cheat; defraud                                                  

Covert              hidden; undercover                                           

Engender          cause                                                              

Hangar             storage area (like garage) for a plane                

Knotty              complex; difficult to solve                                

Nuance             something subtle; a fine shade of meaning        

Plagiarism        taking credit for someone else's writing or ideas

Renown            fame                                                                

Tangent           going off the main subject
Group 2

Abasement                   humiliation; degradation                        

Billowing                      swelling; fluttering; waving                    

Cower                           recoil in fear or servility; shrink away from

Enhance                       improve; make better or clearer             

Harangue                     noisy, attacking speech                        

Labyrinth                     a maze                                                 

Nullify                         to counter; make unimportant                

Plaintiff                       petitioner (in court of law)                     

Replete                        full                                                       

Tangible                      can be touched

Group 3

Group 4

Abrogate                      cancel; deny; repeal

Blasphemy                   speech which offends religious sentiments

Credible                        believable

Enigma                         puzzle; mystery

Harbingers                   indicators; bringers of warnings

Labyrinthine                complicated; highly convolute

Nuzzle                          cuddle; snuggle

Plaudit                         statement giving strong praise

Reprehensible              shameful; very bad

Tardy                            slow; late; overdue; delayed

group 4

Group 5

Absolution                    forgiveness; pardon; release

Blatant                          obvious

Creditable                     praiseworthy

Ensconce                       establish firmly in a position

Hasten                          hurry; accelerate; rush

Laceration                     a cut

Obdurate                      stubborn

Plausible                      can be believed; reasonable

Reprieve                       a respite; postponement of a sentence

Tawdry                         of little value; gaudy
Group 5

Group 6

Abstain                         desist; go without; withdraw

Blighted                        damaged; destroyed; ruined

Credulous                     gullible; ready to believe anything

Enshroud                      cover

Haughtiness                 arrogance; pride

Lachrymose                  tearful; sad

Obfuscate                     deliberately make something difficult to


Plethora                       an excess

Repudiate                    shun; eschew

Tedium                         boredom

Group 6

Group 7

Abstemious                  self denying; refraining from indulging

Blithe                            free-spirited; carefree

Crepuscular                  active at dawn and dusk

Enunciation                  clear pronunciation; accent; articulation

Headstrong                   stubborn; willful

Lackluster                     dull; monotonous; bland

Objective                       unbiased; not subjective

Pliable                           flexible; not stubborn

Rescind                          retract; repeal

Temper                          to moderate; soften

Group 7

Group 8

Abstruse                        difficult to understand; obscure

Blunderbuss                  1. ancient weapon (type of gun);

                                       2. a clumsy person 

Cringe                            recoil; flinch; shy away

Envenom                       to cause bitterness and bad feeling

Hedonism                      self indulgence; pleasure-seeking

Laconic                          using few words; brief; to the point

Oblique                         indirect; slanting

Plumage                       feathers of a bird

Resignation                  acceptance of fate

Tenacious                     stubborn; resolute; holding firm to a purpose
Group 8

Group 9

Accolade                       tribute; honor; praise

Bolster                          support; prop up

Cryptic                          puzzling; enigmatic

Ephemeral                    short-lived

Hedonist                       a pleasure seeker

Lamentation                 expression of regret or sorrow

Obliterate                     destroy; demolish; eradicate

Plummet                       fall suddenly and steeply

Resolution                    determination

Tentative                      not certain

Group 9

Group 10

Acquiesce                     to agree to; give in to

Bombast                       arrogant, pompous language

Curtail                          cut short

Epicure                         someone who appreciates good food and drink

Heed                             listen to

Lampoon                      ridicule; spoof

Oblivious                      totally unaware

Podium                         raised platform

Resonant                      echoing

Tenuous                        flimsy; not solid
Group 10

Level 2

Group 1

Acrid                  sharp; pungent (used of smells and tastes).

Boorish              ill-mannered.

Cynical              believing that people act only out of selfish motives.

Epistle               a letter (form of communication).

Heresy               against orthodox opinion.

Lance                 spear; spike; javelin.

Obscure             difficult to understand; partially hidden.

Poignant            deeply moving; strongly affecting the emotions.

Respite               a break; intermission.

Terse                  concise; to the point.

Set 2 Group 1

Group 2

Acrophobia                              fear of heights

Bourgeois                                middle class

Debility                                   weakness; incapacity

Epistolary                               concerned with letters; through


Hiatus                                     interruption; pause

Languid                                  tired; slow

Obscured                                hidden; covered; buried

Poised                                     calm; collected; self-possessed

Resplendent                           shining; glowing

Therapeutic                            medicinal; curative

Set 2 Group 2

Group 3

Acuity                             sharpness (mental or visual)

Braggart                         someone who boasts

Debunking                      exposing false claims or myths

Epitomized                      typified; characterized; personified

Hidebound                      rigid in opinions

Languish                         decay; fade away; get weaker

Obsequious                     servile; submissive

Polemical                        causing debate or argument

Restorative                     a tonic

Thwart                            prevent; frustrate

Set 2 Group 3

Group 4

Adamant                       forceful; inflexible

Brawny                         muscular

Decathlon                     an athletic competition with ten events

Equivocate                    speak ambiguously; avoid telling the truth

Hieroglyphics                1. picture writing; 2. writing which is difficult

                                      to read or enigmatic 

Larceny                         theft; robbery; stealing

Obsession                     a dominating concern

Ponderous                    weighty; slow and heavy

Retention                      preservation; withholding

Timorous                      cowardly; fearful

Set 3 Group 4

Group 5

Adroit                            skilful

Brevity                          being brief

Decorum                       dignified, correct behavior [decorous (a)]

Err                                 make a mistake

Hinder                           obstruct

Largess                         generosity

Obsolete                       no longer valid

Pontificate                    speak pompously or dogmatically

Reticent                        restrained; holding something back;


Tirade                           stream of verbal abuse

Set 2 Group 5

Group 6

Adulation                    strong admiration; worship

Bristle                          to show irritation

Decoy                           lure; trap; trick

Erratic                           wandering; irregular

Histrionic                      theatrical; exaggerated

Laud                              praise

Obstreperous                noisy and boisterous

Portend                         foretell

Retraction                     withdrawal; cancellation of a statement

Titter                             giggle quietly

Set 2 Group 6

Group 7

Adversity                      hardship

Broach                          start to discuss; approach

Deference                     respect

Esoteric                        obscure and difficult to understand

Hoary                           old

Lavish                           on a grand scale; wasteful

Obtuse                         mentally dull

Portent                         a warning sign; omen

Revere                          worship

Tome                            large book

Set 2 Group 7

Group 8

Advocate                      support

Brusque                        blunt; abrupt

Defoliate                       cause leaves to fall off

Espouse                        promote; take up; support

Hone                             sharpen; increase; whet

Lax                                careless; not strict

Obviate                         avoid; make unnecessary

Poseur                          someone who puts on an act

Riddled                         full of (usually full of holes)

Torpid                           inactive; lazy; stagnant
Set 2 Group 8

Group 9

Aesthetic                      concerning art or beauty

Bulwark                       fortification; barricade; wall

Defunct                        no longer in existence

Etymology                   the study of word origins

Hyperbole                    grossly exaggerated speech

Legend                         1. key to map; 2. myth or story

Odious                         hateful

Posterity                      future generations

Rife                              common

Torpor                         dormancy; sluggishness; inactivity

Set 2 Group 9

Group 10

Affable                         friendly; social; easygoing

Bureaucracy                officialdom

Degradation                deprivation; poverty; debasement

Eulogy                          praise

Hypochondriac            a person obsessed with health; having

                                     imaginary illnesses 

Legion                          in large numbers

Officious                      domineering; intrusive; meddlesome

Posthumous                 after death                   

Rigor                            thoroughness

Totter                           walk unsteadily

Set 2 Group 10