ASPER Rough, Harsh
Aspersion (n) – A damaging remark, A criticism
Synonyms – slander, disparagement
Antonyms – compliment, praise
Helpful Hints: You often hear this word in the phrase “cast aspersions” meaning “say nasty things about someone”
Sample Sentence: Darryl’s parents taught him well to never cast aspersions against his classmates, as he never knew what difficulties they had gone through in their lives.
Exasperation (n) – Extreme annoyance or frustration
Synonyms – aggravation
Antonyms – contentment
Sample Sentence: Donald’s exasperation hit its peak when both his plumbing and electricity failed during the mild storm.
COGN / GNOS Know, Understand
Cognition (n) – The act of knowing, Perception
Synonyms – comprehension, awareness
Antonyms – ignorance, unawareness
Sample Sentence: The couple bought interactive DVDs and trendy books in an attempt to assist their newborn child’s cognition.
Prognosis (n) – A forecast or educated guess, especially of the outcome of a disease or affliction
Synonyms – expectation, prediction
Sample Sentence: Maria was thrilled by her doctor’s thoroughly positive prognosis of her ailments, while her sister was more pessimistic and believed there might still be a problem.
HER / HERE Cling
Cohesive (adj) – Tending to stick together, united
Synonyms – unified, coherent
Antonyms – separated, incoherent
You May Remember: From unit 5, CO- means “Together,” so a cohesive argument is one that clings or holds together well
Sample Sentence: Midori’s essay was given an A, mostly because of her cohesive analysis of the recurring symbolism in the novel.
Incoherent (adj) – 1. Without logical connection, Rambling, Disconnected
Synonyms – incomprehensible, disjointed
Antonyms – coherent, intelligible
You May Remember: From unit 2, IN- means NOT, so incoherent literally means “not clinging together”
Sample Sentence: When people talk in their sleep, what they say is usually incoherent and doesn’t make sense to an outside listener.
EU- Well, Good
Eulogy (n) – A speech of praise, usually to honor a deceased person
Synonyms – tribute, accolade, commendation
Antonyms – condemnation, criticism
You May Remember: From our first unit, the suffix -LOGY means “The study of,” and so a eulogy for someone is a study of all of the good that person has done
Sample Sentence: The wife’s eulogy was powerful, and nearly everyone at the funeral service was in tears.
Euphemism (n) – The use of a mild or gentle expression in place of one that is offensive or blunt
Synonyms – expression, delicacy, genteelism
Sample Sentence: The judge used pleasant euphemisms like spirited and interesting when critiquing the young dancer’s frantic and awkward performance.
Impervious (adj) – Impenetrable, Incapable of being injured
Synonyms – resistant, unaffected
Antonyms – exposed, vulnerable
You May Remember: Since IM- (unit 2) means “NOT” in this case, an impervious defense is one that you cannot go through
Sample Sentence: Being the youngest of eight children, she was virtually impervious to insults from her classmates, as she had heard far worse from her own brothers and sisters.
Peruse (v) – To read with incredible detail
Synonyms – inspect, scrutinize
Antonyms – overlook, skim
Helpful Hints: Many, many people use this word to mean its exact opposite, thinking that to peruse means to read through something casually, or to skim.
Sample Sentence: The boss was successful in finding such talented workers because of the amount of time she dedicated to perusing the applications of her potential employees.
SECU / SEQU Follow
Inconsequential (adj) – Of little or no importance
Synonyms – unimportant, insignificant
Antonyms – important, considerable
You May Remember: IN (unit 2) means NOT, and CON (unit 5) means WITH, so something inconsequential “does not follow with” whatever is around it
Sample Sentence: The Yankees catcher hit an inconsequential home run in the ninth inning—the Royals were still winning by nine afterward.
Obsequious (adj) – Servile, fawning, ingratiatingly obedient, Being a “kiss up”
Synonyms – submissive, compliant
Antonyms – brazen, disobedient
Sample Sentence: The celebrity soon grew tired of his obsequious neighbors, who brought over gift baskets solely in an attempt to get him to invite them into his home.
CLUD / CLUS Shut
Secluded (adj) – Sheltered or removed from general activity or view
Synonyms – concealed, obscured
Antonyms – open, uncovered
Sample Sentence: In order to finish his novel, Clarence had to rent a cabin in a secluded corner of the Canadian wilderness.
Reclusive (adj) – Shut off from the world, Living in solitude
Synonyms – withdrawn, solitary
Antonyms – sociable
Sample Sentence: His family’s obsession with social media was disappointing and made him become even more reclusive, closing his e-mail accounts and losing contact with several friends and relatives in the process.
-IFY To Become
Petrify (v) – 1. To turn into stone or like a stone 2. To horrify, to terrify
Synonyms – 2. frighten, shock
Antonyms – 2. reassure
Helpful Hints: If you have ever heard of a petrified forest, that is when the wood has turned to stone. If a movie makes you petrified, it is as if you have been frozen to your seat, like a stone statue
Sample Sentence: The mouse was petrified by the shriek of the attacking owl, and so it froze in its tracks.
Ratify (v) – To confirm by formal approval or sanction
Synonyms – affirm, approve
Antonyms – revoke, veto
Sample Sentence: The ban on poker games during lunchtime was ratified by the school committee by a vote of eight against one.