CHAPTER 24 on Word Groups

Explanation: Deride (Verb) means to ridicule. Derision (Noun) is noun form of deride (Verb).

Caricature (Noun) deviates slightly. Caricature (Noun) means cartoon character. Caricature (Verb) means to draw cartoon character of someone.

Lampoon (Verb) means to mock at someone. It has second meaning also. Lampoon (Verb) also means to criticize someone. It was also covered in series To criticize.

Burlesque (Verb), Parody (Verb) and Caricature (Verb) mean to imitate humorously.


Meaning: The act of making fun of someone or something

Use: The early efforts to obtain voting rights for women were met with ridicule.


Meaning: To laugh at and make jokes about (someone or something)

Use: The other kids ridiculed him for the way he dressed.


Meaning: Behavior or speech that makes fun of someone or something

Use: Mockery was the only outlet for Ben’s jealousy when Iva left him for another guy.


Meaning: Scornful ridicule

Use: There was a lot of derision and sneering going on when the teacher entered the classroom and found out that the new boy was the object of all of the laughter.


Meaning: A portrayal in which a person’ s characteristics are comically exaggerated

Use: It is often the case that caricatures are presented in cartoons on pages in newspapers depicting a politician in a very amusing and witty way.


Meaning: To draw or describe (someone or something) in a funny or exaggerated way

Use: The press caricatured him as clumsy and forgetful.


Meaning: Comically exaggerated cartoon sketch

Use: “The antics of the defense attorneys turned the trial into a burlesque of justice.”


Meaning: To mock or to imitate in a derisive manner

Use: She struck a ridiculous pose that burlesqued her own vanity.


Meaning: A piece of writing etc. that imitates the style of another so as to be amusing

Use: Any procedure or activity that has been done so badly that it is considered to be nothing but trash is called a parody.


Meaning: To imitate (someone or something) in an amusing way

Use: She parodied her brother’ s poetry.


Meaning: Something that is shocking, upsetting or ridiculous because it is not what it is supposed to be

Use: The comedian’s travesty of a senator making a speech was very funny.


Meaning: To criticize (someone or something) in a way that causes laughter

Use: The politician was lampooned in cartoons.


Meaning: Cartoon, writing etc. that makes fun of a well-known person or thing

Use: He said such ridiculous things that he was often the target of lampoons in the press.


Explanation: Snicker (or Snigger) (Verb & Noun) deviates slightly. It means to laugh at someone in a way that shows disrespect.

SNEER (Noun)

Meaning: A scornful smile or remark

Use: She looked at me with a sneer of disgust.

SNEER (Verb)

Meaning: Smile or speak scornfully

Use: “You obviously don’ t know what you are talking about,” she sneered.

SCOFF (Noun)

Meaning: An expression of scorn or derision

Use: Shaking his head with a scoff, he answered, “Fine.”

SCOFF (Verb)

Meaning: Speak about scornfully

Use: He scoffed at dentists until he had his first toothache.

JEER (Noun)

Meaning: A loud insulting sound or remark

Use: Ignored the jeers of the other team’ s fans and just focused on making her free throw shot.

JEER (Verb)

Meaning: To shout insulting words at someone

Use: He tried to ignore the jeering crowd.

TAUNT (Noun)

Meaning: Mocking or insulting remark

Use: “The taunt uttered by the crowd did not upset the police who were monitoring the parade.”

TAUNT (Verb)

Meaning: To say insulting things to (someone) in order to make that person angry

Use: “The gang members tried to taunt the dignified man who was walking down the street.”

FLEER (Noun)

Meaning: A scornful smile or remark

Use: She looked at me with a fleer of disgust.

FLEER (Verb)

Meaning: Smile or speak carefully

Use: ”You obviously don’ t know what you are talking about,” she fleered.


Meaning: To make a short, quiet laugh at someone in a way that shows disrespect

Use: The prisoner was snickered by an angry mob.


Meaning: Act of snickering

Use: “They are paranoid,” he said with a snicker.


Meaning: To make a short, quiet laugh at someone in a way that shows disrespect

Use: Ten years ago, I would have sniggered at anybody who dared to speak such blasphemy.


Meaning: Act of sniggering

Use: Teammates sniggering each other when one fouls up an important play.

GIBE (Verb)

Meaning: To make insulting remark

Use: Joshua attempted to gibe the speaker, which resulted in his being led away by the ushers.


Explanation: Confront (Verb) means to meet an opponent face to face. Brawl (Verb) means to fight noisily. We covered this word in series for Noisy quarrel. Polemic (Noun) means strong verbal or written attack. Polemical (Adj.) comes from word polemic (Noun).

Feisty (Adj.) deviates slightly. Feisty (Noun) means lively and spirited or not afraid to fight.


Meaning: Having or showing a tendency to argue or disagree with other people in an angry way


Meaning: Having or showing a tendency to argue or fight

Use: Cara’s bellicose attitude when she was concentrating on a project was a signal to her fellow workers to leave her alone.


Meaning: Feeling or showing readiness to fight

Use: The Arab nations refused to approve a non-belligerency clause in any agreement with Israel and so, there are still some very belligerent Arab countries.


Meaning: Liking to cause people to argue or disagree

Use: Edward was a very contentious boy because he often disagreed and argued with his parents about many things.


Meaning: 1) Bad-tempered

2) Ready to fight or argue

Use: fractious person is quarrelsome and difficult to get along with; so, Samuel’s fractious nature made him an unsuitable person for a career in customer service for the department store where he worked.


Meaning: Showing a readiness or desire to fight or argue

Use: Susan was behaving in a pugnacious way when her mother asked her to do some household chores, like taking out the garbage.


Meaning: Quick to argue or fight

Use: The truculent customer glared at the salesman when he told her how much the winter coat would cost.


Meaning: Meeting an opponent face to face

Use: He became more confrontational during the debate.


Meaning: Lively and spirited or not afraid to fight

Use: The novel features a feisty heroine.


Meaning: Taking part in a noisy fight or quarrel

Use: A brawly student who has always being sent to the principals’ s office for starting fights in the halls.


Meaning: Ready or likely to argue or disagree

Use:  Since her divorce from her husband, Kayla has become more and more quarrelsome with her parents because they blamed her for causing the split.


Meaning: Having or showing a willingness to fight or argue

Use: Steven has a combative attitude that makes it very difficult for others to work with him.


Meaning: Taking part in a strong verbal or written attack against someone else’ s opinions, beliefs etc.

Use: Joseph said he resented the polemical attacks of the candidate who was running for mayor of the city.


AVERT (Verb)

Meaning: To prevent (something bad) from happening

Use: The quick arrival of firefighters would avert a major forest fire


Meaning: To stop (something) from happening or to cause (something) to happen at a later time

Use: Some health specialists claim that vitamins can forestall many illnesses caused by aging.


Meaning: To prevent something from happening or to prevent someone from doing something

Use: The judge stated that insufficiency of the evidence precludes a conviction of the defendant.


Meaning: To make (something) no longer necessary

Use:  Because Joe and his family were going on their vacation the following day, he decided to obviate the possibility of running out of gas by going to the station and getting as much fuel as possible for his car before leaving.


Explanation: Aggravate (Verb) means to make (an injury, problem etc.) more serious or severe. It has second meaning also. It means to annoy or bother someone.


Meaning: 1) To become painful and infected

2) To become worse as time passes

Use: Joe’ s insult festered in my mind for days, and made her too angry to speak to him.


Meaning: To make (a bad situation, a problem etc.) worse

Use: When Steven was bitten by a mosquito, he scratched his skin at that spot and doing this exacerbated the itchiness of it even more and caused it to bleed.


Meaning: To make (something) worse or to become worse

Use: Spending more money is only going to worsen the problem.


Meaning: 1) To make (an injury, problem etc.) more serious or severe.

2) To annoy or bother (someone).

Use: Don’t scratch because you will only aggravate the itch.



Explanation: Reconcile (Verb) deviates slightly. Reconcile (Verb) means to restore friendly relation or to resolve the difference.


Meaning: To calm down someone by agreeing to their demands

Use:  The romantic film on TV in the evening helped to appease Becky after a long and hard day’s work at the office.


Meaning: 1) To make (something, such as an unpleasant feeling) less painful, severe etc.

2) To satisfy someone.

Use:  During the economic crisis, Ted tried to assuage the investor’s fears with guarantees that his company was still doing well.


Meaning: To make (someone) friendlier or less angry

Use: The company’ s attempts to conciliate the strikers have failed.


Meaning: to cause (someone) to be calmer, less angry etc.

Use: The waiter tried to soothe the angry customer.


Meaning: To make (someone) less angry

Use: The airline customer service representative tried to mollify the angry passenger by offering her a seat in first class.


Meaning: To cause (someone who is angry or upset) to become calm or quiet

Use: The king pacified the mob with promises of reform.


Meaning: To cause (someone) to feel less angry about something

Use: The administrators placated the customers by agreeing to consider a reduction in prices for the items when they became available again.


Meaning: To make (someone) pleased or less angry

Use: When Jerome told Sara that he didn’t agree with her political view, she responded to his comment by being very loud until he tried to propitiate her by saying that she certainly had a right to her opinion even if it disagreed with his.


Meaning: to restore friendly relations or to resolve differences

Use: She wanted to be reconciled with her father.

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