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Advanced ESL: Vocabulary Words

Study these vocabulary words. Then practice with vocabulary questions.

Conjecture (cun-Jek-chur): noun -- a guess, usually an informed guess
In her paper, she made a conjecture about the origin of the human race.
He is so well-known on Wall Street, everyone wants to know his conjectures about economic trends.
Pedantic (pe-DAN-tic): adj - overly involved in rules or book-learning
I liked that book, but I thought it was a bit pedantic. At times, the author could have used everyday words rather than advanced vocabulary.
After the professor's lecture, only one person asked questions. All of his questions were pedantic--few people even knew what was going on.
Cosmopolitan (cahs-mō-PAH-li-tun): adj - urban, having to do with cities and contemporary times
After three years in New York, she has a very cosmopolitan look.
When he spoke his cosmopolitan ideas in his hometown state, Alabama, many people were offended.
Esoteric (e-sō-TE-ric): adj - intended for a small group, understood by few people
His latest book has to do with esoteric Old English literature. Only Old English scholars will be able to read it.
I didn't want to join that esoteric group. They're too involved in a small set of ideas.
Incontrovertible (in-kahn-tru-VER-di-bul): adj - undeniable, clearly known
The man might have been executed, but incontrovertible evidence came to light a week before his execution day.
Now that she has won an academy award, her fame is incontrovertible.

Practice: Complete the sentences with the correct word (answers are at the bottom of the page):

1. He will never run for president. His bookish views are too _________________ to ever be popular.

A. pedantic
B. incontrovertible
C. esoteric
D. cosmopolitan
E. conjectured

2. Her ______________ ideas were greatly appreciated in her small social circle. Today, many more people agree with her thoughts.

A. pedantic
B. incontrovertible
C. esoteric
D. cosmopolitan
E. conjectured

Now study more words and practice them. After that, there are more practice problems using all 10 words on this page.

Bombastic (bomBAStic): adj. -- pompous, having high views of one's own opinions
I liked that professor, but I thought his lectures were bombastic--a little too much about his own successes.
Her bombastic essay did not get good reviews--it was all about her own research.
Ornate (orNATE): adj. - having detail and being attractive, having fine details
My next door neighbor used to do ornate embroidery. She made beautiful pillows and blankets.
The ornate language in his election speech didn't fool me--I don't like that guy.
Complement (COM-ple-ment): noun - something that goes with another, something that completes, v. completing another thing
This carpet is a perfect complement to the room. It goes with the curtains very well.
We complement each other: I'm energetic and he's not. Together, we're moderate.
Fallacy (FA-lu-see): noun - something false, something not right
She saw the fallacy in the other lawyer's argument. She made the most of it.
He searched his research for fallacies before he turned it in to the committee.
Modicum (MAH-di-cum): noun - a small amount, a token amount or just enough
He showed a modicum of decency when his girlfriend tried to make a scene in front of his wife.
Unfortunately, that lawyer doesn't have a modicum of honesty.

More Practice. Complete the sentence with the missing word or words.

3. She could see the ________________ in his argument, but no one else could see it.

A. modicum
B. complement
C. conjecture
D. fallacy
E. bombasticism

4. The new flowers _________________ the other flowers in the garden. It looks great.

A. modicum
B. complement
C. conjecture
D. fallacy
E. bombasticism

5. His ____________ speech showed how long he had been living a _________________ lifestyle.

A. bombastic ... complementary
B. esoteric .... incontrovertible
C. incontrovertible .... esoteric
D. ornate ... cosmopolitan
E. bombasic ... fallacy

6. After I finished listening to that politician's _________________ statements, I wanted to find a _______________ in his argument.

A. complement ... fallacy
B. incontrovertible ... complement
C. esoteric ... modicum
D. modicum ... complement
E. bombastic ... fallacy

7. We're looking for a new sofa that will ___________________ the room. We want something simple, not too ___________________.

A. complement ... ornate
B. modicum ... ornate
C. ornate ... complement
D. ornate ... modicum
E. ornate ... incontrovertible

8. I know you like to wear sweat pants every day, but please show a ______________ of professionalism when you meet the TV anchorman. He's from Chicago, and he's probably very ____________________.

A. complement ... incontrovertible
B. fallacy ... ornate
C. conjecture ... esoteric
D. modicum ... cosmopolitan
E. modicum ... pedantic

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Copyright: I.E. Tutoring/Speakmethod.com: English Pronunciation Practice

Answers: 1. d, 2. b, 3. c, 4. a, 5. e, 6. e, 7. b, 8. c