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The Collected Word Definition Quizes

Amplify Your Word Aptitude

Mnemonic

A packet of words the avid reader will probably have stumbled upon. Or stumbled over if they didn’t know them. Do you?

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Mnemonic

  1. Barely audible
  2. Possessed by a mnemon
  3. Of the secret order of mumblers
  4. Memory aid
  5. Word with a silent letter

Ukase

  1. Ukelele luggage
  2. Self storage unit
  3. Smells bad, tastes good
  4. All capital letters
  5. Dictator’s dictate

Abattoir

  1. Seminary leader’s home-office
  2. Ladies private chamber
  3. Slaughterhouse
  4. Cesspool
  5. Place where bats hang out

Callipygian

  1. Measured with precision
  2. Bodacious booty
  3. Like circus music
  4. West coast bird species
  5. Itsy-bitsy teeny-weeny

Bucolic

  1. Unruly lock of hair
  2. Crying like a baby
  3. Pastoral
  4. Naïve
  5. Vaping addict

Mouseover for answers

(d) Mnemonic (nĭ-mŏn′ ĭk) Memory aid, trick, or device

(e) Ukase (yōō kās′) Any authoritative edict or decree

(c) Abattoir (ăb′ ə-twär) Slaughterhouse [French]

(b) Callipygian (kăl ə-pĭj′ ē-ən) Having a shapely buttocks

(c) Bucolic (byōō-kŏl′ ĭk) Pastoral

Scoring
5 – Total recall
4 – Unforgettable
3 – Memorable
2 – Notable
1 – Forget it
0 – Never happened

Which Starts with P and That Stands for Phrase

P-phrases
dog legsB legsF tail

This time around, instead of word definitions, phrase meanings. Or even phrases more or less meaning other phrases. In which case, “Close is a cigar.” You’ll see. Take the test.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Parthian shot

  1. Half a jigger
  2. Lucky guess
  3. Way off the mark
  4. Parting shot

Pavlovian response

  1. “Like a moth to a flame”
  2. “I was only following orders”
  3. “Say the first word that comes into your head”
  4. “That rings a bell”

Penny dreadful

  1. Nerd’s girlfriend
  2. World’s worst dollar store
  3. Pulp fiction
  4. Garage sale

Procrustean bed

  1. “No matter how I cut it down, it’s still too short”
  2. “I’ll make it work”
  3. “One size fits all”
  4. “All fit one size”

Pyrrhic victory

  1. “The operation was a success, but the patient died”
  2. “We have met the enemy and he is us”
  3. “Fighting fire with fire”
  4. “We was robbed”

Mouseover for answers

Parthian shot (d) Final remark, usually cutting or derogatory, made upon exiting

Pavlovian response (b) Conditioned response

Penny dreadful (c) Cheap book, usually low-brow melodramas

Procrustean bed (d) Plan or scheme to produce uniformity or conformity by arbitrary or violent methods

Pyrrhic victory (a) Victory or goal achieved at too great a cost

Scoring
5 – Perfect
4 – Phirst rate
3 – Phairly good
2 – Phair to middling
1 – Phailing
0 – Pfft

Wise up to Words of Whimsey

wimsey

Here’s a quintet of mystery words we ran across reading some Dorothy L. Sayers classic Whodunnits featuring her famous sleuth, Lord Peter Wimsey. Who, from her description, we always imagined looked a lot like Mr. Peanut. But maybe that’s our whimsey. Anyway, we didn’t know the following five words, do you?

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Confute

  1. Turn the tables
  2. Cross dress
  3. Compound an error
  4. Prove wrong
  5. Add up the numbers wrong

Seriatim

  1. Like fleas on a dog
  2. Like ducks in a row
  3. Like moths to a flame
  4. Like birds of a feather
  5. Like sardines in a can

Epicene

  1. Of a gourmand
  2. Overindulgent
  3. Having hairy ears
  4. Throwaway bit at the end of a movie or play
  5. Androgynous

Perspicuity

  1. Sweating like a pig
  2. Having good taste in handbags
  3. Lucidity
  4. Misty rain
  5. Adherence to the letter of the law

Ultramontane

  1. At high elevation
  2. East of Eden
  3. North by Northwest
  4. West of Java
  5. South of the Alps

Mouseover for answers

(d) Confute (kən fyōōt′) Prove wrong

(b) Seriatim (sîr ē-ā′ təm) One after another in a series

(e) Epicene (ĕp′ ə-sēn) Having both male and female characteristics (Effeminate, of a man)

(c) Perspicuity (pûr spĭ-kyōō′ ə-tē) Quality of being clear, easily understood; Lucidity

(e) Ultramontane (ŭl trə-mŏn′ tān) South of the Alps

Scoring
5 – A plus
4 – A
3 – A minus
2 – Better than us
1 – Still better than us
0 – So, it’s not just us

Perfect Your Word Prowess

otiose

We dutifully bring you another chance to know your nouns, verify your verbs, define your determiners, and generally impress yourself with how many words you know the meaning of. Or will know after you take the pop quiz. Need we explain more? Surely you know how a multiple choice test works by now.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Otiose

  1. Shaped like tubular rings
  2. Reluctant to speak
  3. Flat as a pancake
  4. Good for nothing; lazy
  5. Fit to feed to pigs

Ennui

  1. Needle case
  2. Immaturity; callowness
  3. Yes and no
  4. The blues
  5. The blahs

Dawdle

  1. Walk like a bulldog
  2. Drag your feet
  3. Hit your head
  4. Doodle in a book margin
  5. Meander awkwardly

Catatonic

  1. Like a bump on a log
  2. Elixir from eastern Spain
  3. Flea spray for cats
  4. Disastrous
  5. Giddy

Faineancy

  1. Sham fortune telling
  2. Engaged bachelor
  3. Really bad stage acting
  4. Incredibly fine detail
  5. Laziness; indolence

Mouseover for answers

(d) Otiose (ō′ shē-ōs) Serving no practical purpose or result; indolent

(e) LEnnui (än wē) istlessness from disinterest; boredom

(b) Dawdle (dôd′-l) Waste time by trifling; procrastinate

(a) Catatonic (kăt ə-tŏn′ ĭk) Exhibiting immobility of the limbs

(e) Faineancy (fā′ nē-ən sē) Laziness; indolence; the state of being idle

Scoring
5 – Perfect
4 – Near perfect
3 – Less than perfect
2 – Far from perfect
1 – Perfectly awful
0 – Nobody’s perfect

Spot the theme? Or are you too lazy to bother?


Our Ultimate Word Quizzzzz

zax

Ultimate, as in the last, as in the letter Z. Not that this is the last word quiz. Just the first and last one featuring the letter Z.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Zax

  1. Bass kazoo
  2. Roofing tool
  3. Pleated shorts
  4. Cheese grater
  5. Flooring made of crushed seashells

Zeugma

  1. Dark green, sticky snot
  2. Shed skin of a lizard
  3. Dark beer that tastes like molasses and aftershave
  4. Circular earthen dwelling with a thatched roof
  5. Word modifying two nouns in different senses

Zaftig

  1. Wacky and sarcastic
  2. Indifferent to other’s suffering
  3. Slovenian circus
  4. Built like a brick ----house
  5. Dazed and confused

Zori

  1. Japanese flip-flop
  2. Masked Mexican swordswoman
  3. Person from Zor
  4. Corkscrew staircase in a minaret
  5. Native dog of Indonesia

Zyzzyva

  1. Sound of sleep apnea
  2. Ancient Sumerian god of the undead
  3. Type of weevil
  4. Anatomical passageway to vent your spleen
  5. Wizard’s conical hat

Mouseover for answers

(b) Zax (zăks) Roofing tool (similar to a hatchet, used for cutting and dressing roofing slates)

(e) Zeugma (zōōg′ mə) A figure of speech in which a word applies to two others in different senses (John and his license expired last week) or to two others of which it semantically suits only one (With weeping eyes and hearts)

(d) Zaftig (zäf′ tĭg) (of a woman) Having a full, rounded figure; voluptuous

(a) Zori (zō-rē) Flat thonged sandal

(c) Zyzzyva (zĭz′ ə-və) Type of weevil (and the very last word in our dictionary, so the ultimate word in words)

Scoring
5 – At the Zenith
4 – In the Zone
3 – Zing!
2 – Zap
1 – Z-z-z-z-z-z
0 – Zip

Weigh Your Word Wonkiness

sub

We haven’t done one of these bits in awhile, so here you go. It’s an open question whether these words ever come in handy or you can use them in a sentence. Well, five different sentences. We can’t imagine the sentence that would use all five.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Transubstantiation

  1. Excuse to be a cross-dresser
  2. Conversion of a PC file to a Mac file and vice-versa
  3. Transformation from one substance to another
  4. Travelling around the world under water

Demesne

  1. Tiny and compact
  2. Really, really big yard
  3. Evil twin
  4. Having a hairy back and shoulders

Amanuensis

  1. Sissy
  2. Baroque stringed instrument played with pedals
  3. Literary assistant
  4. Flaking off of dead skin cells

Votary

  1. Devotee
  2. Person who tabulates election ballots
  3. Traffic circle without an exit
  4. Optional

Palpable

  1. Able to be paid online
  2. Flat as a pancake
  3. Easily turned to mush
  4. Tangible, easily felt, or obvious

Mouseover for answers

(c) Transubstantiation (trăn səb-stăn shē-ā′ shən) Transformation from one substance to another [Biblical, Transformation of wine and bread of the Eucharist]

(b) Demesne (dĭ-mān′) Grounds of a mansion or country house, estate

(c) Amanuensis (ə-măn′ yōō-ĕn sĭs) Literary or artistic assistant, in particular one who takes dictation or copies manuscripts

(a) Votary (vō′ tə-rē) Devoted follower, adherent, or advocate of someone or something, devotee

(d) Palpable (păl′ pə-bəl) Tangible, easily felt, or obvious

Scoring
5 – Wowie-Zowie!
4 – Whoo-Hoo!
3 – Wonderful
2 – Well done
1 – Weak
0 – Woeful

Verify Your Vocabulary

minatory

Another Wednesday, another multiple choice word definition quiz. Need we say more? Hope not, because we don’t have any more. On to the quiz.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Minatory

  1. Walk-through maze
  2. Like a bull in a china shop
  3. So tight he’d skin a fart
  4. In the nick of time
  5. Meaner than a junkyard dog

Venal

  1. Of deer meat
  2. Drunk on wine
  3. Willing to sell out
  4. Of dirty sex
  5. Type of plastic

Afflatus

  1. Water borne litter
  2. Birth of a notion
  3. Bluster
  4. Seven year itch
  5. Ghost

Pecuniary

  1. Weird
  2. South American rodent
  3. Borderline legal
  4. Monetary
  5. Peevish

Dilemma

  1. “Damned if you do, damned if you don’t”
  2. “Between a rock and a hard place”
  3. “Heads I win, tails you lose”
  4. “Can’t win for losing”
  5. “There is no good answer”

Mouseover for answers

(e) Minatory (mĭn′ ə-tr ē) Menacing; threatening

(c) Venal (vē′ nəl) Open to bribery; mercenary

(b) Afflatus (ə-flā′ təs) Divine creative impulse or inspiration

(d) Pecuniary (pĭ kyōō′ nē-ĕr ē) Of or relating to money

(c) Dilemma (dĭ-lĕm′ ə) Predicament with two equally bad options (While c is perhaps closest, any of the choices could be seen as essentially correct. Making this entry something of an antonym of itself, a choice between equally good options.)

Scoring
5 – Aced it
4 – Solid B
3 – Wobbly C
2 – Generous D
1 – Inglorious E
0 – Suspicious F, you couldn’t have gotten the last one wrong

Examine Your eWord Expertise

expiate

Test your noun knowledge, verb verve and all around word wisdom with our latest word definition quiz brought to you by the letter E. Though we don’t imagine you’ll hear any of these words on Sesame Street.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Escheat

  1. Cunning getaway plan
  2. Government land grab
  3. Fee paid on a loan from a pawnbroker
  4. Half-hearted effort
  5. Unauthorized play by unwritten rules

Expiation

  1. Making amends
  2. Loss of excess heat through panting
  3. Revoking of citizenship
  4. Communication with hand gestures
  5. Giving up after a half-hearted effort

Eschew

  1. Overact
  2. Gum that’s lost its flavor
  3. Read the riot act
  4. Particularly wet sneeze
  5. Don’t touch with a ten foot pole

Eleemosynary

  1. Slippery as a greased pig
  2. Oblivious to right and wrong
  3. Charitable
  4. Causing confusion
  5. Of the 8th through 12th deadly sins

Epigone

  1. Missing skin
  2. Summing up after a Greek play
  3. Absolutely the worst example
  4. Wannabe
  5. Snitch

Mouseover for answers

(b) Escheat (ĕs-chēt′) 1. Confiscate 2. [Law] Taking of property by the state where no legal private claimant exists

(a) Expiation (ĕk spē-ā′ shən) Atonement; making amends

(e) Eschew (ĕs-chōō′) Avoid; shun

(c) OfEleemosynary (ĕl ə-mŏs′ ə-nĕ rē) the giving of alms; charitable

(d) Epigone (ĕp′ ə-gōn) Second-rate imitator

Scoring
5 – Extraordinary
4 – Excellent
3 – Elementary
2 – E for effort
1 – Egad
0 – Even a blind pig, but not you

Challenge Your Word Wherewithal

bear-mechanic

Test your noun knowledge and verify your verb verve with another of our multiple choice word definition quizes.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Plerophory

  1. Basement of a basilica
  2. Area you can’t see out of the corner of your eye
  3. Collection of spare parts you’ve no idea what they’re for
  4. State of having no doubts whatsoever
  5. Unbelievable nonsense spouted to puff oneself up

Sedulous

  1. Exhibiting dedication and diligence
  2. Dismissive or skeptical of advice
  3. Rebellious without a cause
  4. Lacking a to-do list
  5. Outwardly cheerful and eager

Mendacity

  1. Ability to fix or repair things
  2. Overt masculinity
  3. Dirty, rotten lying
  4. Condition of too much of a good thing
  5. Promising what you can’t deliver

Peculate

  1. Invest with other people’s money
  2. Surmise wildly
  3. Bubble up from below
  4. Drink in dainty sips
  5. Steal from the public purse

Grisly

  1. Large North American brown bear
  2. Full of cartilage and tough connective tissue
  3. Gun crewman that fires the cannon
  4. Repulsive or terrifying
  5. Covered with thorns or spikes

Mouseover for answers

(d) Plerophory (plə′ räf-ə-rē) State of full confidence or absolute certainty

(a) Sedulous (sĕj′ ŏ-ləs) [of a person or action] Exhibiting dedication and diligence

(c) Mendacity (mĕn dăs′ ə-tē)Untruthfulness

(e) Peculate (pĕk′ yə-lāt) Embezzle or steal money, esp. public funds

(d) Grisly (grĭz′-lē) Causing horror or disgust

Scoring
5 – Top notch
4 – Top drawer
3 – Top tier
2 – Topping
1 – Top knot
0 – Top, not
Bonus score of + 5 for figuring out what the heck the scoring means

Solidify Your Word Savvy

word-savvy

Another chance to assess your noun knowledge, verb verve and weasel word wisdom. Take the underhanded word definition quiz. Which is to say, we provide not necessarily a definition, but a clue of sorts. A new twist on an old idea. Satisfaction guaranteed.*

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Subreption

  1. Constant grumbling under one’s breath
  2. Tedium of daily chores
  3. Misleading half-truth
  4. Groin injury
  5. The old switch-a-roo

Ostensibly

  1. “Too good to be true”
  2. “Six of one, half dozen of another”
  3. “Your results may vary”
  4. “Maybe, maybe not”
  5. “Better than it looks”

Proviso

  1. What’s in the fine print, e.g.
  2. Visitor’s temporary pass into Italy
  3. Sneak peek, e.g.
  4. Double asterisk
  5. Footnote, e.g.

Sophistry

  1. Second year in high school or college
  2. Fake-out argument
  3. Women’s studies
  4. Theology that makes it up as it goes along
  5. Immature and idiotic behavior

Virtual

  1. “Now you see it, now you don’t”
  2. “Look, but don’t touch”
  3. “Holier than thou”
  4. “There’s no there there”
  5. “Close, but no cigar”

Mouseover for answers

(c) Subreption (sŭb rĕp′-shən) Calculated misrepresentation by concealment of pertinent facts

(d) Ostensibly (ŏ-stĕn sə-blē) Apparently or purportedly, but perhaps not actually

(a) Proviso (prə-vī′ zō) Condition attached to an agreement

(b) Sophistry (sŏf′ əs trē) Seemingly plausible but fallacious argument intended to deceive

(e) Virtual (vûr′ chōō-əl) Almost as described, but not completely or by strict definition

Scoring
5 – Savant
4 – Sagacious
3 – Savvy
2 – So-so
1 – Substandard
0 – Sad

*Our satisfaction, anyway. (How sneaky, we disclaimed parenthetically.)

Know Your Nomenclature

nomenclature

The returns and variations on a theme never stop here at terry colon point com. To wit: another of our word quizes, in the usual multiple choice form, for you to test the breadth of your word wherewithal.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Hobbledehoy

  1. One-legged seaman
  2. Invisible forest gnome
  3. Child’s wheeled riding toy
  4. Bygone precursor to hopscotch
  5. Gawky teen

Factotum

  1. Pole or kiosk displaying official decrees
  2. Multi-purpose assistant
  3. Briefcase
  4. Double-checker
  5. Something assumed to be true

Malefactor

  1. Degree of bendability of a metal or alloy
  2. Division by zero
  3. Baddie
  4. Y chromosome
  5. Mustache connected to sideburns

Termagant

  1. Small orange-winged songbird
  2. Baby born over one week late
  3. Nasty bitch
  4. Little white liar
  5. Lame duck

Suzerain

  1. Precipitation in egypt
  2. What’s left after lawyers get their cut
  3. Economic oracle
  4. Country that’s the boss of another country
  5. Underling of a Sultan

Mouseover for answers

(e) Hobbledehoy (hŏb′-əl dē-hoi) Gawky adolescent boy

(b) Factotum (făk-tō′ təm) Assistant serving many functions

(c) Malefactor (măl′ ə-făk tər) Evildoer

(c) Termagant (tûr′ mə-gənt) A harsh-tempered woman; shrew [Historical, an imaginary deity of violent and turbulent character, often appearing in morality plays]

(d) Suzerain (sōō′ zə-rən) A sovereign or a state exercising political control over a dependent state

Scoring
5 – Bravo!
4 – Kudos
3 – Good on You
2 – Not bad
1 – None too good
0 – None, too bad

Are You a Word Wolf?

word-wolf

This episode: words uttered by Nero Wolf in the detective stories ostensibly written by Archie Goodwin. Well, they are narrated as if written by Mr. Wolf’s factotum, but the novels were actually penned by Rex Stout. In case you’re wondering, ‘factotum’ is not one of the words.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Footling

  1. Menial servant
  2. Baby shoe made of soft fabric
  3. Trivial and irritating
  4. Twelve inch tall elf
  5. Being a good dancer

Subdolous

  1. The layer immediately below the dolous
  2. Cunning
  3. Unconsolable
  4. Less than ideal in taste
  5. Below the threshold of human hearing

Flummery

  1. Parade with outlandish costumery
  2. Coughed up wad of phlegm
  3. Navel lint
  4. Store selling flum
  5. Nonsense

Contumacy

  1. Resentment
  2. Fear of being buried alive
  3. Ability to determine wind direction with a raised wet finger
  4. Disrespect for fat geniuses
  5. Pig-headed disobedience

Witling)

  1. Wannabe wit who’s a half-wit
  2. Act of carving wood with a knife
  3. Child of a comedian
  4. Frivolous
  5. Victim of a practical joke

Mouseover for answers

(c) Footling (fŏŏt′ lĭng) Trivial and irritating

(b) Subdolous (sŭb′ də-ləs) Sly; crafty; cunning

(e) Flummery (flŭm′ ə-rē) 1. Nonsense; empty compliments [2. A sweet dish made with beaten eggs, milk, sugar, and flavorings]

(e) Contumacy (kän′ tū-mü-sē) Stubborn refusal to obey or comply with authority, especially a court order or summons

(a) Witling (wĭt′ lĭng [derogatory] A person who considers themselves to be witty; A would-be wit

Scoring
5 – Wolf
4 – Panzer
3 – Goodwin
2 – Cramer
1 – Durkin
0 – Rowcliff

Assess Your Word Arcana

arcana

While breezing along happily reading some book or other, we are suddenly confronted with a word that makes us go, “wha-?” So we leg it for the dictionary to devine what the heck the author is getting at. Maybe. Sometimes we just let it slide because the suspects are all gathered and the detective hero is about to name the murderer. Breaking the suspense to look up some obscure word just won’t do; the killer could get away!

Here’s a packet of just those kind of words we stumbled across and over. Which is to say they stumped us. How many do you know?

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Celerity

  1. Fibrous green vegetable
  2. Fame for no apparent reason
  3. Unduly famous fibrous green vegetable
  4. Like a bat out of Hell
  5. Good-natured ribbing

Gallimaufry

  1. Belowdecks of a bireme
  2. Hodgepodge
  3. Airline food
  4. Offensiveness of bratty kids
  5. French as spoken by non-Francophones

Thaumaturgy

  1. Unpleasant dreams
  2. Wickedness
  3. The set of beliefs of postmodernists
  4. Magic
  5. The application of suction cups as medical therapy

Labile

  1. A mobile that has fallen on the ground
  2. Of the common people
  3. Too old to get married
  4. Unmentionable body part
  5. Oversensitive and flighty

Concatenation

  1. State of indecision
  2. Dislike of cats
  3. A chain of events, for instance
  4. Embarrassment at forgetting someone’s name
  5. Din made by the percussion section of an orchestra playing Modern music

Mouseover for answers

(d) Celerity (səl-ĕr′ ə-tē) [Archaic or literary] Swiftness of movement

(b) Gallimaufry (găl ə-mô′ frē) A confused jumble or medley of things

(d) Thaumaturgy (thô′ mə-tûr jē) The working of wonders or miracles; magic

(e) Labile (lā′ bīl) Of emotions that are easily aroused, and tend to alter quickly; emotionally unstable

Concatenation (c) (kŏn kăt ə-nā′ shən) 1. A series of interconnected things or events 2. The action of linking things together in a series

Scoring
5 – Excellent
4 – Excellent
3 – Excellent
2 – Excellent
1 – Excellent
0 – We didn’t know them either

Supercharge Your Word Savvy

superbook

We switch things up a bit this time around by couching all the choices prosaically instead of in formal dictionary speak. You’ll get that in the answers. So be warned, the correct choice may not be a literal definition, but close to the actual meaning.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Spate

  1. The past tense of spit
  2. A really bad combover
  3. When things come fast and furious
  4. Spell of bad luck

Ichor

  1. The CPU of a Mac
  2. Blood of the Gods
  3. Fish scale disease
  4. Mad genius’ assistant

Officious

  1. Arranged in cubicles
  2. Clumsy and stupid
  3. Like a nitpicking busybody
  4. In the manner or character of unwritten rules

Comity

  1. Funny act or performance
  2. Officious assembly of people
  3. Person confined to a sanitarium
  4. Courtesy, politeness

Volplane

  1. Type of flying rodent
  2. To dive right in
  3. Swedish flying car
  4. A carpenter’s tool for shaping volutes

Mouseover for answers

(c) Spate (spāt) A large number of similar things or events appearing or occurring in quick succession.

(b) Ichor (ī kōr) The fluid that flows like blood in the veins of the Greek Gods.

(c) Officious (ə-fĭsh′ əs) 1. Assertive of authority in an annoyingly domineering way, esp. in trivial matters. 2. Intrusively offering help or advice; interfering.

(d) Comity (kŏ′ mə-tē) Courtesy and considerate behavior toward others.

(b) Volplane (vōl′ plān) 1. A controlled dive or down­ward flight at a steep angle. 2. To make such a dive or downward flight.

Scoring
5 – super-duper
4 – superior
3 – so-so
2 – stalled
1 – sub-par
0 – sad

Hop Up Your Word Horsepower

adamant

A new year, a new chance to know your nouns, verify your verbs, and perfect your prepositions. Take the quiz to test your grip on the language. Need we explain how a multiple choice quiz works? One word, one answer. Go.

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Adamantine

  1. Unbreakable
  2. Stubbornly stupid and proud of it
  3. Adolescent from adaman
  4. Teeny-weeny, especially applied to a person; Lilliputian

Homologate

  1. Scandal involving diluted milk
  2. To approve; confirm or ratify
  3. To process extracted seed oils into margarine
  4. Metaphorical door that separates the men from the boys

Morass

  1. Wild Scottish donkey
  2. Third buttock
  3. Complicated or confused situation
  4. To repeatedly abuse with a slap to the face or a two-fingered poke in the eyes

Omphaloskepsis

  1. Disbelief in little green chocolatiers
  2. Contemplation of one’s navel in meditation
  3. Male crotch rot
  4. Transverse crest on a hoplite helmet

Tactile

  1. Self-stick flooring
  2. Shaped like a tiny nail
  3. In a discreet manner
  4. Perceptible by touch

Mouseover for answers

(a) Adamantine (ă də măn′ tēn) Unbreakable
(b) Homologate (hō mäl′-ə gāt) To approve; confirm or ratify
(c) Morass (môr-ăs′) Complicated or confused situation
(b) Omphaloskepsis (ŏm fŭ-lō skĕp′-sĭs) Contem­plation of one’s navel in meditation
(d) Tactile (tăk′ tīl) Perceptible by touch

Scoring
5 – word stalion
4 – word thoroughbred
3 – word workhorse
2 – word mule
1 – word nag
0 – off to the glue factory

Two Last P and Q Words to Round off the Year

penultimate

Penultimate

  1. Written threat; ransom note
  2. Fellow occupant of a jail cell
  3. The one leftover item remaining after thinking you ran out
  4. Last but one in a series of things
  5. December 31st of a leap year

Quiescent

  1. With a feeling of impending doom when “it’s too quiet out there”
  2. In a state or period of inactivity or dormancy
  3. In a state or period of nobody being able to think of something to say
  4. Chemical used to make cleaning products smell like “fresh linen”
  5. Slight whiff of fruit

Without further ado or fancy-schmancy self-opening menu window thingies, here are the answers:
penultimate (pĕ′ nəl tə mĭt) Last but one in a series of things (as in New Year’s Eve eve)
quiescent (kwī′ ĕs-ənt) In a state or period of inactivity or dormancy (as on New Year’s Eve eve)

Muster Your Word Muscle

wordmuscle

We bring you one more chance to know your nouns, verify your verbs, define your determiners, and perfect your prepositions. Take the pop quiz and see how massive your dictionary muscles are. No tricks, just pick an answer. You should know how a multiple choice test works at this stage. Plus you know on our word quizes some of the choices are not to be taken seriously. Or are they?

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Vintage

  1. Used and overpriced
  2. Time period when tools were made of vint
  3. Venerable; classic
  4. How much wine one has with a meal
  5. Even uglier now than when it was in style

Sidle

  1. A woman’s equestrian saddle
  2. Drool from the corner of the mouth
  3. A note or doodle in the margins of a book
  4. Invisible symbol for a return in a text document
  5. Walk like a sneaky crab

Usury

  1. Most commonly or customarily, in Japanese
  2. The half-assed stuff one makes for oneself; DIY
  3. Computer workarounds
  4. The class of menial workers
  5. Loansharking

Florid

  1. Strewn with flower petals
  2. Like Rococo decoration
  3. A post-war communist plot
  4. Able to be knocked over easily
  5. Retired to a warm clime

Cryptic

  1. Three part tombstone
  2. Zombie-like
  3. Slow moving
  4. Having an obscure meaning
  5. The involuntary habit of using the same password for everything

Mouseover for answers

(c) Vintage (vĭn′ təj) Venerable; classic

(e) Sidle (sī′-dəl) Walk in a furtive or timid manner, esp. sideways or obliquely

(e) Usury (yūzh′ ə-rē) The illegal practice of lending at unreasonably high interest rates

(b) Florid (flōr′-ĭd) Elaborately intricate or complicated

(d) Cryptic (krĭp′ tĭk) Having an obscure meaning

Scoring
5 – bravo
4 – woo-hoo
3 – satisfactory
2 – uh
1 – duh
0 – boo

Mind Your Ps and Qs

PQ

Is it only a coincidence that P and Q are at the outer ends of the top row of letters on a keyboard? We don’t know. Doesn’t matter, this is another of our know your nouns, verify your verbs, etc. word quizzes. Enough said, let’s begin.

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Propinquity

  1. Dexterity with the small finger
  2. Side by side
  3. Tendency to be rude
  4. A period of time when nobody expects the Spanish Inquisition

Quotidian

  1. Someone who habitually misquotes famous quotes
  2. Ordinary, everyday, pedestrian, ho-hum
  3. Paraphrased
  4. User of especially mundane, paraphrased misquotes

Paregoric

  1. Opium based diarrhea and cough medicine
  2. To shave down a goric
  3. In the manner of, or vaguely resembling an imitation paragor of an odious nature, strained condition, or implausible origin
  4. Rambling word definition that makes no sense

Quincunx

  1. Sound made by a closing aluminum storm door
  2. Half a top ten list
  3. Arrangement like the five spots on a gaming die
  4. Not even a real word but sounds off color

Prestidigitation)

  1. The act of converting newspaper articles for the web
  2. The act of picking pockets
  3. Crap through a goose
  4. Sleight of hand

Mouseover for answers

(b) Propinquity (prō pĭng′ kwə-tē) State of closeness to someone or something

(b) Quotidian (kwō tĭd′ ē-ən) Ordinary or everyday, especially when mundane

(a) Paregoric (păr-ă gōr′-ək) Opium based diarrhea and cough medicine

(c) Quincunx (kwĭn′ kŭngks) A square arrangement of five objects with four on the corners and one in the center

(d) Prestidigitation (prĕs′ tə dĭj ĭ-tā shən) Sleight of hand

Scoring
5 – perfect
4 – peachy
3 – passable
2 – poor
1 – pitiful
0 – pathetic

Alternative Scoring
5 – A quincunx!
4 – quick-witted
3 – qualified
2 – quotidian
1 – questionable
0 – quitter!

Marshal Your Word Mastery

wordmastery

We bring you another chance to know your nouns, verify your verbs, define your determiners, and perfect your prepositions. Take the pop quiz and see how well you’ve mastered the language. Need we explain more? Surely you know how a multiple choice test works by now.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Yardarm

  1. The strip of land between the sidewalk and the street
  2. A curse uttered by a polite pirate
  3. A three foot long forelimb
  4. A rake or hedge clippers used as a weapon
  5. The tip of a ship’s yard

Adduce

  1. Total up by twos
  2. To take a wild guess
  3. Cite as an example in an argument
  4. An Italian second in command
  5. The lowest ranking card in a poker hand

Adumbrate

  1. Roughen a surface
  2. Present in outline
  3. To hum when you don’t know the words
  4. Shut someone up by shouting them down
  5. A stupid fee or pace

Cartouche

  1. A female mustache
  2. A French picture joke
  3. A two-wheeled wagon that carries bags containing liquid
  4. An oblong enclosing hieroglyphs
  5. A stylistic but useless decoration on an automobile

Fatuous

  1. Having a low center of gravity
  2. The Roman goddess of obesity
  3. Characterized by fake facts
  4. Toothsome, greasy and tasty
  5. Silly and pointless

Mouseover for answers

(e) Yardarm (yărd′ ărm) The outer extremity of a ship’s yard (a cylindrical tapered spar slung across a mast for a sail to hang from)

(c) Adduce (ə-dōōs′) Cite as an example in an argument

(b) Adumbrate (ă′ dŭm brāt) Report or represent in outline

(d) Cartouche (kăr tōōsh′) An oval or oblong enclosing a group of Egyptian hieroglyphs

(e) Fatuous (fă′ chōō-əs) Silly and pointless

Scoring
5 – know-it-all
4 – notable
3 – none too shabby
2 – not so hot
1 – no cigar
0 – know-nothing

Pump up Your Word Power

pumpdictionary

Know your nouns, verify your verbs, define your determiners, and perfect your prepositions. Take the multiple choice test and see how well you know your words. You don’t have to conjugate or use them in a sentence. Simply choose one of five possible definitions. It’s easy. It’s fun. OK, it’s easy, anyway.

Click on text to select or change your answer. Double-click to unselect.

Mulct

  1. Woody stuff piled around trees
  2. Film left on the glass after drinking milk
  3. Extract money by fine or taxation
  4. What you are after the taxman milks you dry
  5. Past tense of mull

Histrionic

  1. Having to do with the past
  2. Funny and paradoxical at the same time
  3. An elixir that makes you cry like a girl
  4. Overly theatrical or melodramatic
  5. A hissy fit

Poltroon

  1. A type of pole arm ax thing
  2. A small group of soldiers, sometimes armed with a type of pole arm ax thing
  3. A locker or bin where polts are stored
  4. An utter coward
  5. A political aide, hack, slimeball

Indolent

  1. The state of being a day late and a dollar short
  2. Lazy
  3. Fasting period for Christian Bengalis
  4. On the dole; collecting welfare
  5. Not capable of being dolent

Gimcrack

  1. A tool for burgling a car
  2. Shoddy but enticing object
  3. A flaw in a precious gim
  4. A snide remark made by gim
  5. A kind of corn, and I don’t care

Mouseover for answers

(c) Mulct (mŭlkt) Extract money from (someone) by fine or taxation

(d) Histrionic (hĭs trē ŏn′-ək) Overly theatrical or melodramatic in character or style

(d) Poltroon (pŏl trōōn′) An utter coward

(b) Indolent (ĭn′ də-lənt) Wanting to avoid activity or exertion; lazy

(b) FGimcrack (jĭm′ krăk) limsy or poorly made but deceptively attractive

Scoring
5 – word wiz
4 – word wonder
3 – word worthy
2 – word wobbly
1 – word wimp
0 – wordless wonder

How many did you get? You might have gotten them all since most of the wrong choices were silly jokes. They were supposed to be jokes, anyway. If not, that’s where we got it wrong. The reader is free to score us as they will.

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