Intermediate+ Word of the Day

Intermediate+ Word of the Day: rev

A rev is an informal term; it is an abbreviation for a revolution of the crankshaft within an engine. The related verb means ‘to accelerate’ and it can have an engine, vehicle, or driver as its subject. Rev is also used figuratively, often followed by up, about other things and means ‘to increase’ in both activity and…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: hound

A hound is any of several breeds of dog used for hunting, often having a long face and large drooping ears. Informally, any dog can be called a hound, and a mean and contemptible man can be called a hound as well, although this is now dated. A devotee or enthusiast of something is also a hound (in this sense, the name of the thing the person is a devotee of always comes before hound). As a verb, to hound means ‘to persecute,…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: chump

A chump is an informal term that means ‘a person easily fooled’ or simply ‘a fool’. As a slang term, it means ‘head.’ Chump is also a short, thick piece of wood or, sometimes as chump-end, the thick end of something, especially a loin of lamb or mutton. Unrelatedly, to chump is a less common variant of ‘to chomp’, meaning…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: stem

The stem is the part of a plant that supports the leaf, flower, or fruit. Any long, slender, and supporting part, such as the one on a pipe or a wineglass, is also a stem. On a watch, the stem is the part that sticks out from the body of a watch, having a knob on its end for winding the watch. In grammar, the stem is a form of a word comprising a root on its own, or a root plus a prefix or suffix, to which certain endings may be…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: prance

Prance is what horses do when they move with springing steps. It also means ‘to ride on a horse doing this.’ By extension, if a person prances, it means that he or she walks in a really proud manner, with exaggerated steps, trying to attract attention. As a noun, a prance is…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: gush

To gush means ‘to flow out suddenly and with force,’ as liquids do when released from somewhere they have been contained. Figuratively, if a person talks too much and effusively or emotionally about something, that is also to gush. If tears or blood suddenly come out, that is to gush as well. As a noun, a gush is a sudden flow of liquid, blood, or…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: grim

Grim is an adjective that means ‘stern and allowing no compromise.’ It can also refer to anything of a sinister character, and also to something cruel or savage. When we use grim to talk about people or things, it can mean ‘harsh or intimidating’ in either looks or, in the case of people, behavior. More broadly, it means…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: stream

A stream is a body of water that flows along a channel and, more broadly, any flow of liquid or fluid. Figuratively, a series of things can be called a stream of something. As a verb, to stream means ‘to flow in a stream,’ usually used when we are talking about a fluid, such as tears or blood, ‘to emit a fluid,’ and, when we are talking about light, ‘to extend in a beam or rays.’ It also means ‘to proceed…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: roost

A roost is a place where birds perch to rest, or any large cage or house for birds to rest in. Figuratively, any place to rest can be called a roost. To roost, as a verb, means ‘to sit or rest in a roost’ and, figuratively, ‘to settle or stay, especially to rest by…

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Intermediate+ Word of the Day: guy

We’re pretty sure you know that guy is an informal word for a man or boy and that, in the plural form guys, it can refer to both men and women, but did you know that guy is also a verb meaning ‘to make fun of or ridicule someone?’ This sense is dated, but you might find it in older books. Unrelatedly, guy is also a rope or cable used to guide and steady an object being lowered or to secure something that is likely to move and the verb to guy means…

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