CHAPTER 25 on Word Groups

Explanation:  Ameliorate (Verb) means to make (something, such as problem better, less painful) etc. It also means to make something better. Assuage (Verb) means to make (something, such as an unpleasant feeling) less painful, severe etc. It also means to satisfy someone. Therefore, this word has also been covered in series for To make something (such as an injury, problem etc.) less serious or severe.


Meaning: To make (something) less severe, harmful or painful

Use: Bill’s inexperience will militate against him getting an early promotion.


Meaning: To make the effects of (something, such as an illness) less painful, harmful or harsh

Use: To palliate a disease or its symptoms is to make them less severe or unpleasant without removing the causes of them.


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 (something) less painful, difficult or severe

Use: The injection the doctor gave Susan was intended to alleviate the pain caused by her infected tooth.


Meaning: 1) To make (something, such as problem better, less painful) etc.

2) To make something better or to improve something.

Use: Although Becky had a new computer, which was supposed to ameliorate her work and save her time, she became quite confused and impatient trying to make it do what she wanted it to do!



Meaning: A remedy for all ills or difficulties

Use: There is no easy panacea that will solve our complicated international situation.


Meaning: A magical liquid that can cure illness or cure life

Use: The news of her chance to go abroad acted on her like an elixir.


INANE (Adj.)

Meaning: Very silly or stupid

Use: Because of his nonsensical behavior, Hank was considered to be an inane person.


Meaning: 1) Seriously mentally ill

2) Very foolish

Use: The murderer was found to be criminally insane.


Meaning: Foolish or stupid

Use: He had a habit of making fatuous remarks even during a serious conversation.


Meaning: Stupid or idiot

Use: He drank too much and started acting like an imbecilic person.


Meaning: Foolish or stupid

Use: She made some very moronic suggestions.


Meaning: Very stupid and silly

Use: Marge thought that the radio host asked his caller the most asinine questions that she had ever heard.


Meaning: 1) Mentally ill

2) Wildly foolish

Use: He would be asked to acquiesce in some lunatic scheme.


Meaning: Very foolish

Use: When she was nervous or under stress, Lucinda often told the most ludicrous jokes.


Meaning: Very foolish or silly

Use A preposterous suggestion.


Meaning: Michael’s failure to get up in time for school is more farcical than tragic.

Use: The farcical routine that a person has to go through to get a refund from that company.



Meaning: Having a narrow outlook

Use: This worldview seems incredibly naïve and preposterous.


Meaning: Shortsighted

Use: The government still has a myopic attitude to public spending.


Meaning: A person who lives in the provinces

Use: The confidence man figured that fleecing these provincials would be easy.


Meaning: 1) Unsophisticated and narrow-minded

2) Related to a province.

Use: As provincial governor, Sir Henry administered the Queen’ s law in his remote corner of Canada, caught up in local problems, out of touch with London news, he became sadly provincial.


Meaning: 1) Narrow-minded

2) Not knowing or interested in new or different ideas.

Use: An insular community that is not receptive to new ideas, especially from outsiders.


Explanation: Adulate (Verb), Bootlick (Verb), Fawn (Verb), Truckle (Verb) means to flatter around. Cringe (Verb) and grovel (Verb) means fawning and fearing in front of a superior.


Meaning: Trying to please by flattery and being very attentive

Use: When the Hollywood stars entered the hotel, the employees were giving more fawning services than they usually do for other famous people.


Meaning: 1) Excessively flattering

2) Large in size or quantity

Use: Roy thought his neighbors were embarrassingly fulsome in expressing their appreciation for taking care of their mail delivery while they were away on vacation.


Meaning: Too eager to help or obey someone important

Use: Jane and Jim were served in the hotel by obsequious employees who were striving to fulfill all the desires that they indicated.


Meaning: A person who praises powerful people in order to get their approval

Use: Julie was a sycophant who flattered her brother so he would loan her his car.


Meaning: Very obedient and trying too hard to please someone

Use: Being good at service means that we are servile and demeans our noble island spirit.


Meaning: Copying like a slave or without originality

Use: Slavish devotion to another person can be self-destructive.


Meaning: 1) Too willing to obey someone else

2) Less important

Use: Helene’s subservient behavior belied her real intent, which was to learn the housekeeper’s role and then to take over the position.


Meaning: Excessively or slavishly flattering

Use: Often when foreign officials meet, there is a tendency to exchange adulatory comments that are full of platitudes or overused words and insincere praise.


Meaning: Acting in a subservient manner

Use: He made a truckling apology to his girlfriend.


Meaning: A person who tries to gain favor with through a highly obedient or obsequious manner

Use: When her career was riding high, the self-deluded often mistook bootlickers for true friends.


Meaning: To cower in fear or to behave in an excessively humble way

Use: We are surrounded by cringing yes-man and sycophants.


Meaning: Treating someone with too much respect or fear in order to gain approval or favor

Use: The peasant was groveling before the king.


Attempt Sentence Equivalence Test 9

Based on words covered in Chapter 24, Chapter 25.

Number of questions: 10

Time limit: 15 min.



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