TRACT Draw, Drag
Abstract (adj) – Differing from concrete realities; Difficult to understand
Synonyms: Unclear, Indirect
Antonyms: Concrete, Understandable
Sample Sentence: The art was so abstract that it was difficult for me to understand what it even was supposed to be.
Protracted (adj) Lasting for a long time (v) Drawn out or lengthened
Synonyms: Prolonged, Elongated, Extended
Antonym: Shortened, Abbreviated
Sample Sentence: I wish my parents would just get straight to the point and tell me how long I am grounded instead of giving me this protracted lecture about why I was wrong.
MAND Order, Command
Mandate (n, v) – (n) an authoritative order or command (v) to direct with specific authority, to order
Synonyms: (n) Order, Command, Charge, Decree, Dictate, Imperative (v) Demand, Compel, Oblige
Antonyms: (n) Denial, Veto (v) Disallow, Disapprove
Sample Sentence: (n) The town mandate outlawed overnight street parking. (v) The governor mandated that all cars stay off the road during the blizzard.
Reprimand (n, v) – 1. (n) A severe expression of disapproval; A formal expression of disapproval 2. (v) To scold
Synonyms: (n) Admonishment, Disapproval, Castigation, Scolding (v) Chide, Scold, Rebuke
Antonyms: (n) Forgiveness, Praise, Reward (v) Forgive, Praise, Reward
Sample Sentence: (n) The boss issued Susan a harsh reprimand when she showed up for work late twice in one week. (v) The boss reprimanded Susan for her tardiness.
PLAC Please, Appease
Implacable (adj) – Unable to be appeased or soothed; unyielding
Synonyms: Unappeasable, Inconsolable; Adamant, Stubborn
Antonym: Appeaseable; Agreeable, Flexible
Helpful Hint: an implacable enemy
Sample Sentence: We tried everything to quiet the screaming baby, but he was simply implacable.
Placate (v) – to soothe; to make less angry about something
Synonyms: Pacify, Appease, Mollify, Assuage
Antonyms: Anger, Enrage, Incense, Infuriate
You May Remember: pacify, meaning to bring to a state of peace or tranquility; to quiet; to calm, from freshman year.
Sample Sentence: To placate the angry driver, Paul took full responsibility for the accident.
PET force, attack, rush, seek
Impetuous (adj) – Impulsive; Characterized by quick and thoughtless action
Synonyms: Eager, Headlong, Spontaneous
Antonyms: Planned, Careful
You May Remember: the prefixes “im- and “in-” (2) mean into. An impetuous person rushes into a situation without thinking about it.
Sample Sentence: Their impetuous decision to get married in Vegas left them divorced within two months.
Impetus (n) – a driving force or motivation; momentum
Synonyms: Inspiration, Stimulus, Propulsion, Thrust
Antonyms: Counterincentive, Disincentive
Sample Sentence: Meesha’s impetus for studying hard was her desire to gain admission to a prestigious Ivy League school.
ANIM Life, Spirit
Animosity (n) – Hostility; Hatred
Synonyms: Unfriendliness, Opposition,
Sample Sentence: The Capulets’ animosity toward the Montague family began so long ago that we don’t even know the cause of it.
Pusillanimous (adj) – lacking courage; cowardly
Synonyms: Chicken, Gutless, Craven, Dastardly
Antonym: Brave, Courageous, Dauntless, Gallant
Sample Sentence: The pusillanimous soldier hid behind a tank when the rest of his troop advanced.
FID / FIDE Faith, Trust
Diffident (adj) – Lacking confidence; Shy
Synonyms: Abashed, Unconfident
Antonyms: Confident, Self-assured
Sample Sentence: College orientations can be intimidating for diffident people as they are forced into a social situation with strangers.
Confidential (adj) – Private or secret
Synonyms: Undisclosed, Secretive, Personal
Antonyms: Publicized, Unrestricted, Public
Helpful Hints: a confidential comment; a confidential document; a confidential informant
Sample Sentence: Edward Snowden, a former US government contractor, leaked confidential information from the NSA, revealing several global surveillance programs.
-AL like, relating to
Pastoral (adj) – (1) Concerned with the countryside (2) Having the peace of mind normally associated with rural life
Synonyms: Rural, Idyllic
Antonyms: Urban, Berserk
Sample Sentence: The bed & breakfast tried to increase its pastoral charm by putting up quaint paintings of farmlands
Aural (adj) – Of or pertaining to the ear or to the sense of hearing
Sample Sentence: Notes written on the board can be helpful for students who struggle with aural comprehension.
SE- Away, Apart
Sedition (n) – the act of causing rebellion against a the government
Synonyms: Subversion, Rabble-Rousing
Helpful Hint: Sedition involves saying or doing something that prompts others to disobey lawful authority.
You May Remember: You saw the prefix “se” freshman year in the word secluded (adj), meaning sheltered or removed from general activity or view.
Sample Sentence: The anarchist planted the seeds of sedition by questioning the government’s censorship of social media.
Sequester (v) – to keep an individual or individuals away from others; to separate or set apart
Synonyms: Seclude, Segregate, Isolate, Insulate
Antonyms: Desegregate, Integrate
Helpful Hints: You may have heard the expression “sequester a jury.”
Sample Sentence: Tired of paparazzi pressure, Tom Brady sequestered himself in his mansion.