Essential Vocabulary

Vocabulary Notes

1. stand vi 1) to be in an upright position, as to stand still (straight, motionless); to stand with one's back to smb., to stand in one's light; to stand leaning against smth., in a line; to stand on end to rise up on the head as a result of fright or astonishment, e.g. His hair stood on end. to stand out to be outlined, to be prominent, e.g. The green roof stood out against the clear sky. His work stands out from that of the others, to stand up for smb. (smth.) to defend or support smb. (smth.), e.g. George stood up for precedent, it stands to reason it goes without saying, e.g. It stands to reason that we must do the job as well as possible. 2) to bear smth., e.g. Montmorency couldn't stand George's music. I cannot stand heat (pain, his jokes, the climate, etc.). to stand one's ground to be firm, .e.g. Everybody was against him, but he stood his ground. 3) to remain unchanged, e.g. The agreement stands. 4) to provide and pay for, as to stand treat (i.e. pay the bill) 5) to support, e.g. We must stand by each other. 6) to be, e.g. He stands 6 foot in height. 7) to stand for to mean, e.g. M.P. stands for Member of Parliament.

2. back vi/t 1) to go, or cause to go backwards, e.g. Montmorency would growl and back at a rapid rate. 2) to give support to, to help (with money, arguments, etc.), as to back smb. or smb.'s proposal (plans, etc.)

back n 1) the hinder part of the body, as to stand with one's back to the window (smb., etc.); to turn one's back to (the audience, the window, etc.), e.g. Turn your back to me. I'll put straight your collar, to turn one's back on smb. to turn away or run away from smb., e.g. It was mean of you to turn your back .on her when she needed your help, to do smth. behind one's back to do smth. without smb's knowledge, e.g. You ought not to criticize her behind her back. 2) the part of a thing which is furthest from the front, as the back of thj? house, the back of one's head, the back of a chair, at the back of one's mind 3) (modifying other nouns) away from the front, as a back seat (street, vowel), back teeth (rows, etc.)

back adv to, in or into an earlier position or state, as to go (run, turn, be, come) back; to go back on one's word to fail to keep a promise, e.g. One cannot rely on a person who goes back on his word, to keep smth. back from smb. to conceal, e.g. You needn't keep this news back from him. back from at a distance from, e.g. The house stood back from the road. back and forth to and fro, as io walk (run, fly) back and forth

backbreaking ndj very hard, as backbreaking work, task

backbone n the row of bonej joined together along the back; to the backbone (jig.) completely, e.g. He is Russian to the backbone.


background n 1) contrasting surface; on (against) the background of smth., e.g. The white house stood out on the background of the green trees, on (against) a white (black, red) background, e.g. The girl wore a dress with white spots on a blue background. 2) the part which is at the back, as in the background (foreground) of a picture; to keep (stay, remain, be) in the background to keep where one will not be noticed, e.g. She is very shy and always keeps in the background. 3) origin, social status and qualifications of a person, e..g. Tell me your background (tell me about yourself).

backward adj behind others, as a backward district (people, country, industry, etc.)

backwards adv with the back coming first, e.g. Can you spell the word "backwards"?.

3. waste vtli 1) to use without a good purpose or result; spend uselessly, as to waste one's time (energy, money, work), e.g. All his efforts were wasted. 2) to lose strength by degrees, e.g. He was wasting away.

waste n unprofitable use; useless remains of smth., e.g. It's a waste of time to wait any longer. There is too much waste in the house, to lay waste to ravage, to destroy, as to lay waste a country, a city, a village.

waste adj useless; unwanted; thrown away, as waste paper, a waste-paper basket, waste effort

wasteful adj using or spending too much or uselessly, as a wasteful man, wasteful habits, wasteful process

4. hate vt to have a strong dislike for; wish evil to; (colloq.) regret, e.g. My cat hates dogs. I hate troubling you (to trouble you).

hate n hatred; extreme dislike or ill-will, e.g. He was filled with hate for his enemy.

hateful adj feeling, showing or causing hate, as a hateful crime, hateful glances, hateful lie

hatred n hate; strong ill-will; (colloq.) strong dislike, e.g. He looked at me with hatred in his eyes.

5. smile vilt 1) to show pleasure, amusement, kindness, etc. by parting the lips, drawing up the corners of the mouth and loosening the muscles of the face; convey contempt, irony, disbelief, etc. in a similar way, e.g. He never smiles. What are you smiling at? What is making you smile? Fortune has always smiled on (upon) him. 2) to express by smiling; drive away by smiling, as to smile away vexation (grief), e.g. He is not a man to smile away vexation.

smile n 1) the act of smiling; a smiling expression, e.g. There was a pleasant (cruel, ironical, etc.) smile on her face, to be all smiles to look pleased, e.g. The little boy's face was all smiles when he saw his new toy. 2) (pi.) favour, support, as to enjoy the smiles of fortune

6. pat vilt 1) to give a light blow to, with smth. flat, esp. the palm of the hand (often as a sign of affection), as to pat a dog, e.g. Amy patted her shoulder with warmth. 2) to carry out the action of patting, make a patting sound, e.g. She patted the books into a neat pile. He patted his foot listening to the music.


pat n 1) a slight tap or stroke given with the open hand, e.g. He gave me a friendly pat on the shoulder. 2) a light sound made by striking lightly with smth. flat

7. take vi/t 1) to seize or lay hold of with the hand(s), or with an instrument; to grasp, capture, as to take a person's hand, to take hold of smth., to take a man prisoner 2) to accept; receive; buy regularly, e.g. He look the house for a year. Who took the first prize? I shall take a holiday tomorrow. He was taking a nap. You must take your chance. 3) to carry; remove; borrow without permission; steal, e.g. Take these letters to the post. He's always taking other people's ideas. 4) to go with; conduct; escort, as to take a guest home 5) to feel; experience, as to take pride in one's work, to take an interest in politics 6) to eat; drink; receive into the system, e.g. He took a deep breath. 7) to assume; presume; conclude; suppose; regard; understand, e.g. I took him to be an honest man. Do you take my meaning? We may take it for granted. 8) to assume a certain attitude, e.g. Take care what you say. Did he take any notice of you? He has taken a dislike to me. She took her little brother to task. He took great pains to help me.

take after to resemble, e.g. Whom do you take after in your family?

take down 1) to pull down, take to pieces, as to take down an old building 2) to write down from dictation

take in 1) to receive; admit, as to take in lodgers 2) to make smaller, reduce, as to take in a dress 3) to understand, as to take in a lecture 4) to deceive, cheat, as to be taken in when buying a watch

take off 1) to remove, e.g. Take yourself off! 2) to take one's departure, to set off, e.g. The plane took off from Croydon airport.

take over to succeed to; assume control of (a business, management, duties, etc.), e.g. When shall you be ready to take over?

take to 1) to form a liking for, e.g. The baby has taken to her new nursemaid. 2) to fall into the habit of, e.g. He took to gardening when he retired.

take up 1) to occupy, e.g. The work takes up too much time. 2) to admit, e.g. The bus stopped to take up passengers. A sponge takes up water. 3) to continue; pursue further, as .to take up one's story

take up with to associate with, e.g. She had taken up lately with June.

8. level n a flat area of surface; a degree of height (lit. and fig.), as to be above (below) sea-level; the level of knowledge (development); low (high, average, cultural, intellectual, economic, scientific) level; to be on a level with srflth. (smb.), e.g. The water in the river was on a level with the banks. His knowledge is quite on a level with a fourth-year student's, on the level (colloq.) honest(ly), e.g. Is he on the level?

level adj 1) having a flat, horizontal surface, as level road, level ground; to make a surface level 2) even, well-balanced, steady, as to speak in a level voice, e.g. He has a level head (is level-headed). Syn. flat

level vt 1) to make level or flat, as to level a building (a village, a city) to the ground, e.g. The German fascists levelled many villages to the


ground. 2) to bring to a horizontal position; to raise and aim, e.g. The hunter levelled his gun at the beast.

9. regular adj 1) unchanging, usual, habitual, as regular habits; to keep regular hours, e.g. He has no regular work. 2) following, or arranged according to a rule, a plan, or definite order; harmonious, as regular'features, a regular figure 3) properly qualified; recognized, trained, as а regular doctor; the regular army 4) (colloq.) thorough; complete, as а regular rascal

regularly adv 1) in a regular manner, as a garden regularly laid out

2) at regular intervals; constantly; habitually, e.g. He was practising regularly for the last two weeks.

10. scream vilt 1) (of human beings, birds and animals) to give a loud, sharp cry, esp. of pain or strong emotion; (of human beings) to say in a shrill loud voice, as to scream in anger, scream with laughter, e.g. The baby screamed all night. This parrot screams but does not talk. 2) (of wind, machines, etc.) to make a long loud shrill noise

scream n a loud, shrill, piercing cry, expressing pain, fear, anger, etc., e.g. The sound of the screams was loud enough for him to hear, a (perfect) scream (colloq.) a person or thing that is very funny or ridiculous, e.g. "Reginald, you are now the head of the family."-"I know," I said. "Isn't it a scream?"

11. fit vilt 1) to be the right shape or size (for); to be fit or suitable (for), e.g. This coat does not fit me. This key doesn't fit the lock. 2) to make suitable or ready; cause (a thing or person) to be of the right or suitable size, shape, condition, etc. (for), as to fit oneself for one's new duties; to fit a plank in a floor; to fit smth. on to put on (a coat, etc.) in order to make it fit, e.g. I am going to the tailor's to have my coat fitted on. 3) to fit in to occupy or have a suitable or right position or relation, e.g. How will my arrangements for the holidays fit in with yours?

fit adj 1) suitable or suited (for); good enough (for), e.g. The man is not fit for the position. Do as you think fit. We must decide on a fit time and place. 2) proper, right, e.g. He didn't think fit to do what I suggested. 3) strong and well; in good health,' e.g. I hope you're feeling quite fit. He has been ill and is fit for nothing.

12. love vt 1) to have a strong affection or deep, tender feeling for; be in love with, as to love one's parents, one's country 2) to have kind feelings towards, e.g. You ought to love children to become a teacher.

3) to be very fond of; enjoy, find pleasure in, as to love comfort (golf, sea-bathing), e.g. She loves to have (loves having) a lot of dogs round her. "Will you. come with me?"-"I should love to."

love n 1) strong liking; friendliness, tenderness, as a love of learning; a love of one's country, unrequited love; to give (send) one's love to to give, send an affectionate greeting; not to be had for love or money impossible to get by any means 2) a feeling of affection, passion or desire between the sexes; to be in love (with) to have this feeling, e.g. Leander was in love with Hero, to fall in love (with) to begin to love. Syn. affection, devotion


Word Combinations and Phrases

to be through with to read (look at) smth. over smb.'s shoulder
to give smb. a test in  
to take smth. apart to get (be) adjusted to
to put smth. together some more of
in no time next to
  to flash smth. on a screen


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