Monday, 18 September 2017

Interesting vocabulary for the C2 level



set/put the world to rights
to talk about how the world could be changed to be a better place. To have a conversation with someone in which you exchange opinions on a range of subjects, especially opinions on how to solve society’s problems. E.g. We stayed up all night, setting the world to rights.

fraught with something /frɔːt/ filled with something unpleasant. E.g. a situation fraught with danger/difficulty/problems. A thousand-word statement fraught with ambiguities.


vie, vying:
to compete strongly with somebody in order to obtain or achieve something. E.g. vie (with somebody) (for something) She was surrounded by men all vying for her attention. The boys would vie with each other to impress her. They are all vying for a place in the team. A row of restaurants vying with each other for business . Vie (to do something) Screaming fans vied to get closer to their idol.
He is vying to become the candidate.

tut-tut:
to make one or more short sounds that show that you disapprove of something. E.g. He tut-tutted under his breath.

pouch: /paʊtʃ/ a small bag, usually made of leather, and often carried in a pocket or attached to a belt. E.g. a tobacco pouch. She kept her money in a pouch around her neck.

upend somebody/something /ʌpˈend/ to turn somebody/something upside down. E.g. The bicycle lay upended in a ditch. They sat on upended wooden boxes.

be/feel hard done by
(informal) to be or feel unfairly treated. E.g. She has every right to feel hard done by—her parents have given her nothing.

racket: 1. a loud unpleasant noise. Din. E.g. Stop making that terrible racket! 2. a dishonest or illegal way of getting money a protection/extortion/drugs, etc. racket. 3. (also racquet) [countable] a piece of sports equipment used for hitting the ball, etc. in the games of tennis, squash or badminton. It has an oval frame, with strings stretched across and down it.

unscrupulous: /ʌnˈskruːpjələs/ without moral principles; not honest or fair. E.g. unscrupulous methods. In his desire for power, he has become completely unscrupulous. The new law will give unscrupulous landlords an easy way of getting rid of people.

nefarious: /nɪˈfeəriəs/ criminal; immoral. E.g. nefarious activities. The company’s CEO seems to have been involved in some nefarious practices/activities. Why make a whole village prisoner if it was not to some nefarious purpose?

commingle: /kəˈmɪŋɡl/ to mix two or more things together or to be mixed, when it is impossible for the things to be separated afterwards. E.g. commingle (with something) The fluid must be prevented from commingling with other fluids. The corn must be segregated so the two types of seed do not commingle. ‘The part of the brain where the senses commingle’. His book commingles sarcasm and sadness. commingle something (with something) (finance) Campaign funds must not be commingled with other money.

haute cuisine: /ˌəʊt kwɪˈziːn/ cooking of a very high standard. High-quality cooking following the style of traditional French cuisine. E.g. chefs well versed in haute cuisine.

blot (on something) something that spoils the opinion that other people have of you, or your happiness. E.g. Her involvement in the fraud has left a serious blot on her character. There was just a tiny blot on his happiness. That constituted a grave blot on his reputation.

thrust: to push something/somebody suddenly or violently in a particular direction; to move quickly and suddenly in a particular direction. E.g. thrust something/ somebody/ yourself + adv/prep. He thrust the baby into my arms and ran off. She thrust her hands deep into her pockets. (figurative) He tends to thrust himself forward too much. Her chin was thrust forward aggressively. + adv./prep. She thrust past him angrily and left.

cleavage: /ˈkliːvɪdʒ/ 1. the space between a woman’s breasts that can be seen above a dress that does not completely cover them. E.g. She leaned forward slightly, revealing a deep cleavage. 2. a difference or division between people or groups. E.g. a deep cleavage between rich and poor in society.

luncheon: /ˈlʌntʃən/ a formal lunch or a formal word for lunch. E.g. a charity luncheon. Luncheon will be served at one, Madam. They met at a literary luncheon.

ensconce: /ɪnˈskɒns/ be ensconced (+adv./prep.) | ensconce yourself (+adv./prep.) (formal) if you are ensconced or ensconce yourself somewhere, you are made or make yourself comfortable and safe in that place or position. E.g. He ensconced himself in my bedroom as if he owned it. The teacher was ensconced in an elaborate wooden chair. James had ensconced himself in an armchair by the fireplace. Agnes ensconced herself in their bedroom.


ribald: /ˈrɪbld/ (of language or behaviour) referring to sex in a rude but humorous way. Sp. verde. E.g. a ribald sense of humour. Ribald comments/jokes/laughter. He entertained us with ribald stories.
disgrace: the loss of other people’s respect and approval because of the bad way somebody has behaved. Sp deshonrar. E.g. Her behaviour has brought disgrace on her family. The swimmer was sent home from the Olympics in disgrace. There is no disgrace in being poor. Sam was in disgrace with his parents. Disgraced! Sp. deshonrado.

short-change: 1. short-change somebody to give back less than the correct amount of money to somebody who has paid for something with more than the exact price. E.g. I think I've been short-changed at the bar. I think the shopkeeper short-changed me. 2. short-change somebody to treat somebody unfairly by not giving them what they have earned or deserve. E.g. America is short-changing half its young adults by treating those who don’t attend college as failures. Our children have been short-changed by the education system.

the gloves are off
used to say that somebody is ready for a fight or an argument. E.g. With more than five months left until election day, it is somewhat early for the gloves to come off.

nutjob:
A mad or crazy person. E.g. The guy was a certifiable (crazy) nutjob.
slick:
done or made in a way that is clever and efficient but often does not seem to be sincere or lacks important ideas. Sp. hábil. E.g. a slick advertising campaign. A slick performance. You had to admire the slick presentation of last night’s awards ceremony. Glenn is a slick salesman.

hot under the collar
(informal) angry or embarrassed. E.g. He got very hot under the collar when I asked him where he'd been all day.

twists and turns: Complicated dealings or circumstances. E.g. the twists and turns of her political career’

highs and lows: E.g. the highs and lows of her acting career.

whirlwind /ˈwɜːlwɪnd/ 1. a very strong wind that moves very fast in a spinning movement and causes a lot of damage. Sp. torbellino, tornado. 2. a situation or series of events where a lot of things happen very quickly. Something that happens very quickly and unexpectedly, so that the people involved have little control of what happens and how they feel. E.g. To recover from the divorce, I threw myself into a whirlwind of activities.  They married three months after they met – it was a real whirlwind romance. A whirlwind tour/visit. a whirlwind of emotions.

be on tenterhooks (to be) very anxious or excited while you are waiting to find out something or see what will happen. E.g. I've been on tenterhooks all week waiting for the results.
The government kept the media on tenterhooks.

throng: a crowd of people. E.g. We pushed our way through the throng. He was met by a throng of journalists and photographers. He had made a number of appearances to throngs of press during his captivity. The throngs of press people were so numerous and unruly that I needed physical protection
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over easy: (of fried eggs) turned over when almost cooked and fried for a short time on the other side.
tinpot: (especially of a leader or government) not important and of little worth or use. A tinpot leader, country etc is one that is not very important or successful. E.g. a tinpot dictator. It is absolute blackmail and that was said to members of the Authority and various chairmen by tinpot politicians.
 

Tout: /taʊt/ 1. A person who buys up tickets for an event to resell them at a profit. 2. A person soliciting custom (Sp. Clientela) or business, typically in a direct or persistent manner. E.g. It is difficult for a visitor to walk down the street without attracting the relentless attention of touts and hustlers (tricksters/ prostitutes) wanting to sell you something, anything - a bauble, a sob story, a woman.’
Bauble: /ˈbɔːbl/  1. a piece of jewellery that is cheap and has little artistic value. E.g. It was a $50 000 antique diamond ring—not a mere ‘bauble’ as the judge said. 2. a decoration for a Christmas tree in the shape of a ball.
Sob story: a story that somebody tells you just to make you feel sorry for them, especially one that does not have that effect or is not true.
Bogus: /ˈbəʊɡəs/ pretending to be real or genuine. False. E.g. a bogus doctor/contract. Bogus claims of injury by workers.
Disingenuous: /ˌdɪsɪnˈdʒenjuəs/  not sincere, especially when you pretend to know less about something than you really do. E.g. It would be disingenuous of me to claim I had never seen it. This journalist was being somewhat disingenuous as well as cynical.
lammable /ˈflæməbl/ ( also inflammable)that can burn easily. Opposite: non-flammable. E.g. highly flammable liquids. These materials are highly flammable. Many buildings have flammable cladding.

combustible: /kəmˈbʌstəbl/ able to begin burning easily. Flammable. E.g. combustible material/gases.
heinous:
/ˈheɪnəs/ morally very bad. E.g. a heinous crime.
liaise: /liˈeɪz/ 1. liaise (with somebody) (especially British English) to work closely with somebody and exchange information with them. E.g. He had to liaise directly with the police while writing the report. The tax office liaises closely with our department on such matters. 2. liaise (between A and B) to act as a link between two or more people or groups. E.g. Her job is to liaise between students and teachers.
in the light of something: after considering something. E.g. He rewrote the book in the light of further research. Security will be increased in the light of these attacks.
obliterate: /əˈblɪtəreɪt/ obliterate something to remove all signs of something, either by destroying or covering it completely. E.g. The building was completely obliterated by the bomb. The snow had obliterated their footprints. Everything that happened that night was obliterated from his memory.
despicable: /dɪˈspɪkəbl/ very unpleasant or evil. E.g. a despicable act/crime. I hate you! You're despicable.
reprehensible: /ˌreprɪˈhensəbl/ morally wrong and deserving criticism. Deplorable. E.g. His conduct was thoroughly reprehensible.
echo something /ˈekəʊ/ to repeat an idea or opinion because you agree with it. E.g. ‘More police, that’s what we need,’ he said, echoing his father’s views on the subject. This is a view echoed by many on the right of the party.
enlighten somebody (formal) to give somebody information so that they understand something better. E.g. She didn't enlighten him about her background. Can you enlighten us on that?
TLC: /ˌtiː el ˈsiː/ the abbreviation for ‘tender loving care’ (care that you give somebody to make them feel better). E.g. What he needs now is just rest and a lot of TLC. I trained everyday prior to this trip because my body was in a dire need of TLC.
fuddy-duddy: (of a person or their ideas or habits) old-fashioned. A person who has old-fashioned ideas and opinions. E.g. They think I’m an old fuddy-duddy because I don’t approve of tattoos.
sewage works /ˈsuːɪdʒ wɜːks/ [countable + singular or plural verb] (also sewage plant) a place where chemicals are used to clean sewage so that it can then be allowed to go into rivers, etc. or used to make manure. E.g. My parents live near sewage works and you rarely smell them.
queasy: /ˈkwiːzi/ feeling sick; wanting to vomit. E.g. travelling by boat makes me queasy. His stomach still felt queasy and he was grateful for the fresh air. 2. slightly nervous or worried about something. E.g. Now she’d arrived she felt queasy inside.
skimpy: /ˈskɪmpi/ (of clothes) very small and not covering much of your body. E.g. a skimpy dress. 2. (disapproving) not large enough in amount or size. E.g. a skimpy meal. They provided only skimpy details. A skimpy tip.
Money can't buy you happiness. It allows you to be miserable in comfort.
henpecked: /ˈhenpekt/ a man who people say is henpecked has a wife who is always telling him what to do, and is too weak to disagree with her. E.g. a henpecked husband.
hatchway:  an opening or a door in the deck of a ship or the bottom of an aircraft, through which goods to be carried are passed.  
foreshadow something (formal) to be a sign of something that will happen in the future. E.g. His sudden death had been foreshadowed by earlier health scares. These measures were foreshadowed in last year’s Health Committee report.

friends with benefits: two friends who have a sexual realtionship without being emotionally involved. Typically two good friends who have casual sex without a monogomous relationship or any kind of commitment.

screw the pooch (vulgar slang) To make a very serious, grievous, or irreversible mistake; to ruin something or cause something to fail due to such an error. E.g. I'm sorry, boss, I really screwed the pooch this time. Do you think we can get the clients back if I explain that it was all a misunderstanding because of me? This operation depends on you, so don't screw the pooch.
pooch: /puːtʃ/ a dog.

staid: /steɪd/ not amusing or interesting; boring and old-fashioned. E.g. The museum is trying to get rid of its staid image.

have a cow
(North American English, informal) to become very angry or anxious about something. E.g. Don't have a cow—it's no big deal.

smell a rat
(informal) to suspect that something is wrong about a situation. E.g.  I don't think this was an accident. I smell a rat. Bob had something to do with this. The minute I came in, I smelled a rat. Sure enough, I had been robbed. When my husband started working late three or four times a week, I smelled a rat.  She smelled a rat when she phoned him at the office where he was supposed to be working late and he wasn't there.

mum’s the word!
(informal) used to tell somebody to say nothing about something and keep it secret. E.g. "I'm not telling people generally yet." "OK, mum's the word!"

strain: (v)
1. strain something/yourself to injure yourself or part of your body by making it work too hard. E.g. to strain a muscle. You’ll strain your back carrying those heavy suitcases.
2. to make an effort to do something, using all your mental or physical strength. E.g. strain something to do something I strained my ears (= listened very hard) to catch what they were saying. strain something Necks were strained for a glimpse of the stranger. strain to do something People were straining to see what was going on. strain (something) (for something) He burst to the surface, straining for air. Bend gently to the left without straining.
3. strain something to try to make something do more than it is able to do. Sp. forzar al límite, crear tensiones en E.g. The sudden influx of visitors is straining hotels in the town to the limit. His constant complaints were straining our patience. The dispute has strained relations between the two countries (= made them difficult). Her latest version of events strained their credulity still further. Their relationship has been strained.

sanguine (about something) (formal) cheerful and confident about the future. Optimistic. E.g. They are less sanguine about the company's long-term prospects. He tends to take a sanguine view of the problems involved.
deleterious: /ˌdeləˈtɪəriəs/ harmful and damaging. E.g. the deleterious effect of stress on health. These drugs have a proven deleterious effect on the nervous system.  The deleterious effects of smoking. Deleterious chemical additives. Divorce is assumed to have deleterious effects on children.
His mission was to examine the deleterious toll of insufficient sleep on the body
self-deprecating: /ˌself ˈdeprəkeɪtɪŋ/ done in a way that makes your own achievements or abilities seem unimportant. E.g. He gave a self-deprecating shrug. A self-deprecating manner/remark. Self-deprecating humour/jokes. A self-deprecating apology.

come/get to grips with something
to begin to understand and deal with something difficult. E.g. I'm slowly getting to grips with the language. They have so far failed to come to grips with the ecological problems.

revile somebody (for something/for doing something) /rɪˈvaɪl/ (formal) to criticize somebody/something in a way that shows how much you dislike them. E.g. The judge was reviled in the newspapers for his opinions on rape. He was now reviled by the party that he had helped to lead.
bedbug: a small flat insect that lives especially in beds, where it bites people and sucks their blood.


step up to the plate
(especially North American English) to do what is necessary in order to benefit from an opportunity or deal with a crisis. To take action when something needs to be done, even though this is difficult. Sp. asumir responsabilidades. Tomar medidas. E.g. It's important for world leaders to step up to the plate and honour their commitments on global warming. It’s time for businesses to step up to the plate and accept responsibility. He took over the team when it became obvious no one else was going to step up to the plate. In this crisis we all need to step up to the plate and make a difference.



make no bones about (doing) something
(informal) to be honest and open about something; to not hesitate to do something. To say clearly what you think or feel about something. E.g. She made no bones about telling him exactly what she thought of him. He made no bones about how bad he thought the food was. They make no bones about their dislike for each other.



pull your punches
(informal) (usually used in negative sentences) to express something less strongly than you are able to, for example to avoid upsetting or shocking somebody. E.g. Her articles certainly don't pull any punches.


sunlounger: /ˈsʌnlaʊndʒə(r)/ a chair with a long seat that supports your legs, used for sitting or lying on in the sun.

deckchair: a folding chair with a seat made from a long strip of material on a wooden or metal frame, used for example on a beach.

look up: (of business, somebody’s situation, etc.) to become better. Improve. E.g. At last things were beginning to look up. Things are looking up.


ransomware: a type of malicious software designed to block access to a computer system until a sum of money is paid. E.g. The criminals behind this particular ransomware attack demanded $192 from users to unlock their computer systems. Although ransomware is usually aimed at individuals, it's only a matter of time before business is targeted as well.


nothing (much) to write home about
(informal) not especially good; ordinary. E.g. The team’s performance was nothing to write home about.


free-for-all: 1. a situation in which there are no rules or controls and everyone acts for their own advantage. E.g. The lowering of trade barriers has led to a free-for-all among exporters. A price-cutting free-for-all. 2. a noisy fight or argument in which a lot of people take part. E.g. Prompt action by prison staff prevented a violent free-for-all.
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disparage somebody/something /dɪˈspærɪdʒ/ (formal) to suggest that somebody/something is not important or valuable. Belittle. E.g. I don't mean to disparage your achievements. You are always disparaging /dɪˈspærɪdʒɪŋ/ me.

taunt: /tɔːnt/
(N) an insulting or unkind remark that is intended to make somebody angry or upset. E.g. Black players often had to endure racist taunts. She ignored his taunt. Their taunts stung him into his best performance for the team yet.

sting, stung, stung: to make somebody feel angry or upset. E.g. sting somebody He was stung by their criticism. They launched a stinging attack on the government. sting somebody to/into something Their cruel remarks stung her into action. sting somebody into doing something He was stung into answering in his defence.

taunt: (V)
taunt somebody
to try to make somebody angry or upset by saying unkind things about them, laughing at their failures, etc. E.g. The other kids continually taunted him about his size.

spurn: /spɜːn/
spurn somebody/something to reject or refuse somebody/something, especially in a proud way. Sp. desdeñar, rechazar. E.g. Eve spurned Mark's invitation. A spurned lover. The president spurned the tight security surrounding him and adopted a more intimate style of campaigning. She spurned my offers of help. Ellis plays the part of the young lover spurned by his mistress.

shun:
shun somebody/something
to avoid somebody/something. E.g. She was shunned by her family when she remarried. An actor who shuns publicity. The company has long been shunned by ethical investors. To feel shunned by the world. (Sp. sentirse rechazado por la gente).

extemporise: /ɪkˈstempəraɪz/ to speak or perform without preparing or practising. E.g. I'd lost my notes and had to extemporize.
strive: (strive, strove. striven; or strive, strived,strived) to try very hard to achieve something. E.g. strive (for something) We encourage all members to strive for the highest standards. strive (against something) striving against corruption strive to do something Newspaper editors all strive to be first with a story. She strove to find a solution that was acceptable to all. Decisions have to be made and some are never easy but we strive to make the right decisions and also hope that others make the right decisions for us.

elucidation: /iˌluːsɪˈdeɪʃn/ the act of making something clearer by explaining it more fully. E.g. Their objectives and methods require further elucidation. I trust he was not being deliberately elliptical here, but some elucidation of his meaning in these phrases is called for.

out of favour (with someone) no longer desirable or preferred by someone. E.g. (Typically: be ~; go ~.) I can't ask John to help. I'm out of favour with him. That kind of thing has been out of favour for years. Bingo has grown much out of favour in Britain since the advent of internet gambling.

compelling: E.g. Her depth of knowledge and her ability to impart it clearly to a non-academic audience makes her a compelling speaker.

rapt: so interested in one particular thing that you are not aware of anything else. E.g. a rapt audience. She listened to the speaker with rapt attention. He watched her with a rapt expression. Jill stared at them blankly, rapt in thought. She held a large audience rapt in attention for nigh on 90 minutes.

nigh on /naɪ/ (old-fashioned) almost; nearly. E.g. They've lived in that house for nigh on 30 years.

prognosis: /prɒɡˈnəʊsɪs/
(pl. prognoses /prɒɡˈnəʊsiːz/)
1. (medical) an opinion, based on medical experience, of the likely development of a disease or an illness. E.g. to make a prognosis. The prognosis is not good.
2. a judgement about how something is likely to develop in the future. E.g. The prognosis is for more people to work part-time in the future. E.g. Studies confirm the prognosis that the Mediterranean is on course to become a sea dominated by small tropical species that no one likes to eat.

Anisakis: E.g. Increasingly, fish are found to be infected with parasites such as Anisakis.

shiftless: lazy and having no ambition to succeed in life. E.g. She worked hard but she had to support a shiftless husband. The bench of the “sinofós” ( if it wasn´t for) was supposed to be the habitual haunt of the shiftless and the work-shy (unwilling to work).

foundry: /ˈfaʊndri/ a factory where metal or glass is melted and made into different shapes or objects. E.g. an iron foundry. Foundry workers.

Ofcom: (the Office of Communications) an independent organization in the UK that is responsible to Parliament. It was started in 2004 to control standards in radio and television broadcasting and the telecommunications industry, to see that customers are treated fairly and to encourage new communications networks. Since 2011 it has also been responsible for controlling standards in the postal services industry.

brazen: /ˈbreɪzn/ (adj) open and without shame, usually about something that people find shocking. Shameless. Sp. descarado. E.g. She had become brazen about the whole affair. His brazen admission that he was cheating. She’s known for her own brand of brazen sexuality. There were several instances of brazen cheating.

blatant: /ˈbleɪtnt/ (of actions that are considered bad) done in an obvious and open way without caring if people are shocked. Flagrant. Sp. descarado. E.g. a blatant attempt to buy votes It was a blatant lie.

flagrant: /ˈfleɪɡrənt/ (of an action) shocking because it is done in a very obvious way and shows no respect for people, laws, etc. E.g. a flagrant abuse of human rights. A flagrant breach of copyright. He showed a flagrant disregard for anyone else's feelings.

red flag: a flag used to warn people of danger. E.g. You mustn’t swim when the red flag is flying.

tip somebody off (about something)
(informal) to warn somebody about something that is going to happen, especially something illegal. E.g. Three men were arrested after police were tipped off about the raid. tip somebody off that… They were tipped off that he might be living in Wales.

tip-off: (N) secret information that somebody gives, for example to the police, to warn them about an illegal activity that is going to happen. E.g. The man was arrested after an anonymous tip-off. Customs officers had received a tip-off about a shipment of cocaine. He was arrested after a tip-off to police.

salient: /ˈseɪliənt/ most important or noticeable. E.g. She pointed out the salient features of the new design. He summarized the salient points. The article presented the salient facts of the dispute clearly and concisely.

If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen:
Used as a way to tell someone that they should either stop complaining about a difficult or unpleasant activity, or stop doing it. E.g. Alan: I didn't think being a stockbroker could be so stressful. Fred: If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen. Jill: This exercise class is too tough; the teacher should let us slow down. Jane: If you can't stand the heat, get out of the kitchen.


upset: (N) (in a competition) a situation in which a person or team beats the person or team that was expected to win. E.g. We had our first major upset when Rogers was taken off with a leg injury. The war veteran came close to pulling a stunning political upset in Ohio this summer.

hell-bent on something/on doing something determined to do something even though the results may be bad. E.g. He seems hell-bent on drinking himself to death. He was hell-bent on revenge.

neck and neck (with somebody/something):
level with somebody in a race or competition.  If two competitors are neck and neck, they are level with each other and have an equal chance of winning. E.g. The cyclists were neck and neck as they approached the final lap.

unseeded:
not chosen as a seed in a sports competition, especially in tennis. E.g. unseeded players.

seed: one of the best players in a competition. The seeds are given a position in a list to try and make sure that they do not play each other in the early parts of the competition. E.g. The top seed won comfortably. The number one seed.

House of cards: a plan, an organization, etc. that is so badly arranged that it could easily fail. E.g. The enormous national debt amassed in the last eight years makes all this apparent prosperity nothing but a house of cards.

AWOL/ˈeɪwɒl/ absent without leave (used especially in the armed forces when somebody has left their group without permission). E.g. He's gone AWOL from his base. (humorous) The guitarist went AWOL in the middle of the recording.

(with) all/both guns blazing
(informal) with a lot of energy and determination. E.g. The champions came out (with) all guns blazing. I went into the meeting with guns blazing, determined not to let him win.

working/firing on all cylinders
(informal) using all your energy to do something; working as well as possible. E.g. Dawson will be firing on all cylinders after two months of fitness training. Neither conductor nor orchestra are really firing on all cylinders.

obliterate something to remove all signs of something, either by destroying or covering it completely. E.g. The building was completely obliterated by the bomb. The snow had obliterated their footprints. Everything that happened that night was obliterated from his memory.

disquieting: causing worry and unhappiness. E.g. Everything about her seemed perfect apart from one disquieting fact. The disquieting situation between these two neighbouring countries looks as if it will continue.

early to bed and early to rise (makes a man healthy, wealthy, and wise): said to emphasize that someone who gets enough sleep and starts work early in the day will have a successful life.
pandemonium: /ˌpændəˈməʊniəm/ a situation in which there is a lot of noise, activity and confusion, especially because people are feeling angry or frightened. Chaos /ˈkeɪɒs/. E.g. Pandemonium broke out when the news was announced. There was pandemonium in the classroom till the head appeared.
scamper: + adv./prep. (especially of children or small animals) to move quickly with short light steps. E.g. The children scampered off into the garden.
surreptitiously: /ˌsʌrəpˈtɪʃəsli/ in a quick or secret way so that other people do not notice. E.g. Martin glanced surreptitiously about him. She seemed to be listening to what I was saying, but I couldn't help noticing her surreptitious glances at the clock. The little boy surreptitiously opened his eyes during the prayer.

high-visibility /ˌhaɪ vɪzəˈbɪləti/
(informal high-vis, hi-vis)
1. used to describe clothing made of material that appears very bright and is very easy to see. E.g. cyclists with high-visibility jackets. Hard hats and high-vis vests must be worn on the building site.
2. used to describe something that is intended to attract a lot of attention. E.g. a high-visibility ad campaign.

nifty: good, pleasing, skilful or effective. E.g. a nifty piece of work/footwork. A nifty little gadget. Nifty tricks.

nail-biting: making you feel very excited or anxious because you do not know what is going to happen. E.g. a nail-biting finish. It's been a nail-biting couple of weeks waiting for my results.

heyday: /ˈheɪdeɪ/ the time when somebody/something had most power or success, or was most popular. Sp. auge. E.g. In its heyday (Sp. en sus buenos tiempos), the company ran trains every fifteen minutes. A fine example from the heyday of Italian cinema. A picture of Brigitte Bardot in her heyday. In its heyday, this theatre was packed every night.

turmoil: a state of great anxiety and confusion. E.g. emotional/mental/political turmoil. His statement threw the court into turmoil. Her mind was in (a) turmoil. She felt much calmer after the turmoil of recent weeks. They found their lives thrown into turmoil when he fell sick.

bayou: /ˈbaɪuː/ a branch of a river in the southern US that moves very slowly and has many plants growing in it. E.g. The Louisiana bayou.

lurid: /ˈlʊərɪd/
1. too bright in colour, in a way that is not attractive. E.g. She was wearing a lurid orange and green blouse.
2. (especially of a story or piece of writing) shocking and violent in a way that is deliberate. Shocking because involving violence, sex, or immoral activity. E.g. lurid headlines. The paper gave all the lurid details of the murder. You can read all the lurid details of the affair in today's paper. My son's death was in every paper in the most lurid of terms.

queasy:
1. feeling sick; wanting to vomit. E.g.  Travelling by boat makes me queasy. His stomach still felt queasy and he was grateful for the fresh air. I started to feel queasy as soon as the boat left the harbour.Just the thought of blood makes me queasy.
2. slightly nervous or worried about something. E.g. Now she’d arrived she felt queasy inside.

shear (shear, sheared, shorn or shear, sheared, sheared)
shear something to cut the wool off a sheep. E.g. It was time for the sheep to be shorn. Sheep shearing.

lumber:
1. + adv./prep. to move in a slow, heavy and awkward way. E.g. A family of elephants lumbered by. The huge convoy of trucks lumbered out of the city.
2. lumber somebody (with somebody/something) (informal) to give somebody a responsibility, etc., that they do not want and that they cannot get rid of. E.g. When our parents went out, my sister got lumbered with me for the evening. She might say ‘Yes’. Then you’d be lumbered.

shack: a small building, usually made of wood or metal, that has not been built well. Sp. chabola, choza. E.g. The settlement consists only of shacks; there are no roads, no water, no street lighting.
beguile: /bɪˈɡaɪl/
1. beguile somebody (into doing something) to trick somebody into doing something, especially by being nice to them. Sp. engatusar. E.g. She beguiled them into believing her version of events. The salesman beguiled him into buying a car he didn't want.
2. beguile somebody to attract or interest somebody. Sp. seducir. E.g. He was beguiled by her beauty. The tapestries continue to beguile all those who visit the cathedral. 
aplomb: /əˈplɒm/ if somebody does something with aplomb, they do it in a confident and successful way, often in a difficult situation. Sp. serenidad. E.g. with considerable/great/remarkable aplomb He delivered the speech with his usual aplomb. She concealed the problem with remarkable aplomb. With great aplomb Sp. con gran aplomo/ serenidad.

tawdry: /ˈtɔːdri/
1. intended to be bright and attractive but cheap and of low quality. Sp. de mal gusto, chabacano. E.g. tawdry jewellery.
2. involving low moral standards; extremely unpleasant or offensive. Sp. sórdido. E.g. a tawdry affair. In future please keep your tawdry secrets to yourself.
Sp. En el futuro, por favor guárdate los secretos sórdidos.

geeky: /ˈɡiːki/ typical of a person who is boring, wears clothes that are not fashionable, does not know how to behave in social situations, etc. E.g. a geeky guy/toy. A geeky-looking guy in glasses.

gangling: /ˈɡæŋɡlɪŋ/ (also gangly /ˈɡæŋɡli/) (of a person) tall, thin and awkward in their movements. Lanky. Sp. larguirucho/a. E.g. a gangling youth/adolescent.

balletic: /bæˈletɪk/ smooth and elegant, like a movement or a dancer in ballet. E.g. balletic movements. A graceful, balletic movement.

hold your own (against somebody/something) (in something)
to remain in a strong position when somebody is attacking you, competing with you, etc. E.g. Business isn't good but we're managing to hold our own. She can hold her own against anybody in an argument. The patient is holding her own although she is still very sick. Suzanne may be young, but she can hold her own in debates with more experienced council members.

split, split, split
split your sides (laughing/with laughter): to laugh a lot at somebody/something. Sp. partirse de risa. E.g. We nearly split our sides laughing/with laughter watching Paul trying to get the dog into the bicycle basket.

taper: /ˈteɪpə(r)/ to become gradually narrower; to make something become gradually narrower. E.g. The tail tapered to a rounded tip. She had long tapering fingers. The leaves are long, tapering to a point at each end. taper something The pots are wide at the base and tapered at the top.

smell, smelt, smelt (smelled, smelled)
come up/out of something smelling of roses
(informal) to still have a good reputation, even though you have been involved in something that might have given people a bad opinion of you. To have people believe that you are good and honest after a difficult situation that could have made you seem bad or dishonest. E.g. Nobody ever knew the details and he came out of the deal smelling of roses. When the results of the fraud investigation were announced last week, the staff came up smelling of roses.

a rose by any other name would smell as sweet
(saying) what is important is what people or things are, not what they are called.

workforce: /ˈwɜːkfɔːs/ all the people who work for a particular company, organization, etc. E.g. The factory has a 1 000-strong workforce. Two thirds of the workforce is/are women.

sidetrack: sidetrack somebody (into doing something) to make somebody start to talk about or do something that is different from the main thing that they are supposed to be talking about or doing. Distract. E.g. I was supposed to be writing a letter but I'm afraid I got sidetracked. Don’t be sidetracked into discussing individual cases. Anyway, I got well and truly sidetracked there....back to our topic.

not let the grass grow under your feet: to not waste time by delaying doing something. E.g. We can't let the grass grow under our feet - we've really got to get going with this project.

To have green fingers: to be good at growing things.E.g. I'm afraid I don't have green fingers. I've killed every plant I've ever owned. I was just admiring your beautiful plants, Helen. You must have a green thumb.

To grasp the nettle: to deal bravely with a problem. To deal with a difficult situation firmly and without hesitating. E.g. The government now has the opportunity to grasp the nettle of prison reform.

Not a bed of roses: something that has unpleasant aspects to it as well as some good ones e.g. Life is not always a bed of roses!

The last straw: the latest in a series of bad events that makes you feel that you cannot bear any more

To hit the hay/sack: to go to bed. E.g. I’ve got a busy day tomorrow, so I think I’ll hit the sack.

Be Barking up the wrong tree: to have the wrong idea about how to get or achieve something. To try to do something without any chance of success because you do not understand the situation properly. E.g. You're barking up the wrong tree if you're expecting us to lend you any money. His attorney suggested that the investigators might be barking up the wrong tree.

To hold out an olive branch: to show you want to make peace. E.g. Management is holding out an olive branch to the strikers.

Be pushing up the daisies: if someone is pushing up the daisies, they are dead! E.g. I'll be pushing up the daisies long before it happens.

A shrinking violet: someone who is shy. A person who is very shy or modest and does not like to attract attention. E.g. She loves appearing on television and is no shrinking violet when it comes to expressing her views.

workplace: /ˈwɜːkpleɪs/ the office, factory, etc. where people work. E.g. the introduction of new technology into the workplace. These safety standards apply to all workplaces.

uncompromising: unwilling to change your opinions or behaviour. Sp. inflexible, intransigente. E.g. an uncompromising attitude. He has a reputation for being tough and uncompromising. He was quite uncompromising about high standards in art. The government has remained uncompromising on this issue. I admire John for his uncompromising honesty and sense of justice.

down: (V)
1. down something
to finish a drink or eat something quickly. E.g. We downed our coffees and left.
2. down somebody/something to force somebody/something down to the ground. E.g. to down a plane. Storms downed trees and power lines.

down tools
(British English) (of workers) to stop work; to go on strike. E.g. When the Anderson was sacked, his fellow workers downed tools and walked out.

impending: (usually of an unpleasant event) that is going to happen very soon. Imminent. E.g. his impending retirement. Warnings of impending danger/disaster. They were all filled with a sense of impending doom. His impending retirement (Sp. su inminente jubilacióna) sign of impending disaster (Sp. una señal de que se avecina un desastre)

 
not worth the paper it's written on and not worth the paper it's printed on Fig. [of a document] meaningless or without authority; of no value. E.g. That contract isn't worth the paper it's written on. All the signatures are forged. Don't take a check from that guy. It's not worth the paper it's written on.

run-of-the-mill: (adj) ordinary, with no special or interesting features. E.g. a run-of-the-mill job. These should be run-of-the-mill problems to the experienced manager.

be par for the course /pɑː(r)/
(disapproving) to be just what you would expect to happen or expect somebody to do in a particular situation. Norm. E.g. Starting early and working long hours is par for the course in this job. The school budget is going to be cut again this year, but then that's par for the course.

few and far between
not frequent; not happening often. E.g. Apartments that are both comfortable and reasonably priced are few and far between. My inspired moments are few and far between.

live by your wits
to earn money by clever or sometimes dishonest means. E.g. he lived by his wits and was involved with many shady characters.

ruminatively: /ˈruːmɪnətɪvli/ in a way that involves thinking deeply about something. Sp. pensativo. E.g. "I hope so", he said ruminatively.

regalia: /rɪˈɡeɪliə/ the special clothes that are worn or objects that are carried at official ceremonies. E.g. a portrait of the queen in full regalia. The queen's regalia at her coronation included her crown and sceptre. (informal humorous) any set of special clothes. E.g. The biker was dressed in full regalia, with shiny black leather and lots of chains.
The Bishop of Florence in full regalia.

your Sunday best
(informal, humorous) your best clothes. E.g. I put on my Sunday best for the occasion.

(to give) credit where credit's due: an expression that means that you should praise someone who deserves it, although you might dislike some things about them. E.g.I don't especially like the woman but, credit where credit's due, she's very efficient.

cheesed off (with/about somebody/something) (British English, informal) annoyed or bored. Sp. harto. E.g. He’s cheesed off with his job.
She’s a bit cheesed off with her job

percolate:/ˈpɜːkəleɪt/
1. (+ adv./prep.) (of a liquid, gas, etc.) to move gradually through a surface that has very small holes or spaces in it. Sp. filtrarse. E.g. Water had percolated down through the rocks. Nitrates may take 20 years to percolate through to the underground streams.
2. to gradually become known or spread through a group or society. Sp. Propagarse. E.g. It had percolated through to us that something interesting was about to happen. Changes percolate through gradually. These ideas may eventually percolate through to the top of the organization Sp. puede que al final estas ideas se propaguen por la cúpula de la organización
3. percolate (something) to make coffee in a percolator; to be made in this way.

thrill-seeker (n) a person who enjoys taking part in extreme sports and other activities involving physical risk. E.g. When I was a younger lad I was a bit of a thrill-seeker.

fraught with something /frɔːt/ filled with something unpleasant. E.g. a situation fraught with danger/difficulty/problems.

fib
: a statement that is not true; a lie about something that is not important. E.g. Stop telling fibs.

in the blink of an eye very quickly; in a short time. E.g. In the blink of an eye, he was gone.

homeboy: /ˈhəʊmbɔɪ/ (also homie)
a male friend from the same town as you; a member of your gang (= a group of young people who go around together). E.g. You are my homie. You know me well.

wingman
: a friend who supports you, especially a man who supports another man when trying to meet or talk to possible partners. E.g. In these kinds of situations it always helps to have a good wingman.

BFF: (Best Friends Forever) E.g. That guy is my BFF, we have been friends our whole lives and we will until we die.
boo: A person's boyfriend or girlfriend. E.g. you are my boo.
smell blood in the water: the exposure of a competitive weakness in an opponent that arouses increased competitive aggression in others. Likened to the literal presence of blood in water that causes aquatic predators (such as sharks) to seek out and attack prey. E.g. After their opponents' star striker left the match with an injury, the home team smelled blood in the water and brought on their attack with everything they had.

bottle glasses: thick glasses.
buck teeth: Upper front teeth that stick out. Sp. dientes salidos.
buck: male rabbit. E.g. The buck darted across the road.
wallflower: a person who does not dance at a party because they do not have somebody to dance with or because they are too shy. E.g. we'll get a name for being wallflowers.

blotch: a mark, usually not regular in shape, on skin, plants, material, etc. E.g. He had come out in (= become covered in) dark red blotches.
blotchy: /ˈblɒtʃi/  (also blotched) covered in blotches. E.g. her blotchy and swollen face. Nancy's face had turned a blotched red; she looked like someone whom the nuns had told to go and stand outside the door.

belligerent: unfriendly and aggressive. Hostile. E.g. a belligerent attitude. He is always very belligerent towards me.

tail light: /ˈteɪl laɪt/ a red light at the back of a car, bicycle or train. E.g. She stood watching the car's tail lights disappear down the drive.
headlight: a large light, usually one of two, at the front of a vehicle; the beam from this light. E.g. He dipped his headlights (= directed the light downwards) for the oncoming traffic.

footprint: a mark left on a surface by a person’s foot or shoe or by an animal’s foot. E.g. footprints in the sand. Muddy footprints on the kitchen floor. He could identify any animal from its footprints.
fingerprint: mark made by the pattern of lines on the tip of a person’s finger, often used by the police to identify criminals. E.g. His fingerprints were all over the gun. To take a suspect’s fingerprints. The car was examined for fingerprints.

sport (V) sport something to have or wear something in a proud way. E.g. to sport a beard. She was sporting a T-shirt with the company's logo on it. The city is sporting a new look (Sp. luce una nueva cara)  more cosmopolitan than ever before.

tosh: nonsense. Rubbish. E.g. It’s just a lot of tosh.

Jams (the 'just about managing')

eke out a living, etc. to manage to live with very little money. For years he eked out a miserable existence in a dreary bedsit in Bristol.

bite the bullet (From the custom of giving soldiers a bullet to bite on during a medical operation without anaesthetic.)
(informal) to start to deal with an unpleasant or difficult situation which cannot be avoided. E.g. I wasn’t happy with the way my career was going so I decided to bite the bullet and look for another job. I’m going to bite the bullet and ask my boss for a pay rise.

carve out: to achieve or gain (something). Sp.forjarse, hacerse. E.g. He carved out a career for himself as a graphic designer. Carve out a living.

hunt where the ducks are: To seek opportunities or results in situations or places where they are most likely to be found. To pursue or look for one's objectives, results, or goals in the place where one is most likely to find them. If you're looking to expand your customer base, you need to identify who would benefit from your business the most and then hunt where the ducks are.
bite someone’s head off ​to speak to someone angrily when there is no reason to. E.g. I just asked if I could help – you don’t have to bite my head off!
livid: extremely angry. E.g.He was livid when he found out.

blow your lid/top/stack ​to become extremely angry. E.g. My father will blow his top when he sees what happened to the car.

swoon: /swuːn/
to feel a lot of pleasure, love, etc. because of something or someone. E.g. The audience swooned with delight.
swoon (over somebody) to feel very excited, emotional, etc. about somebody that you think is sexually attractive, so that you almost become unconscious. E.g. He's used to having women swooning over him.

hubris: /ˈhjuːbrɪs/
[uncountable]
the fact of somebody being too proud. In literature, a character with this pride ignores warnings and laws and this usually results in their downfall and death. E.g. He thought he was above the law and was ultimately punished for his hubris. Scientists may arguably be guilty of hubris in this area. There is no safety in unlimited technological hubris.

erstwhile: /ˈɜːstwaɪl/
[only before noun] former; that until recently was the type of person or thing described but is not any more. E.g. an erstwhile opponent. His erstwhile friends turned against him.
bedstead /ˈbedsted/ the wooden or metal frame of an old-fashioned type of bed. E.g. a brass/an iron bedstead.

no holds barred
with no rules or limits on what somebody is allowed to do. E.g. There will be no holds barred in his interview with the president this evening. This is comedy with no holds barred.

budgie smugglers: small, tight swimming trunks for men.

forgo: /fɔːˈɡəʊ/
(also forego)
forgo something (formal) to decide not to have or do something that you would like to have or do. Sp. abstenerse de, privarse de. E.g. No one was prepared to forgo their lunch hour to attend the meeting. She would willingly forgo a birthday treat if only her warring parents would declare a truce. Time to prepare was a luxury he would have to forgo. We decided to forgo going to the party because of the bad weather. As a new year's resolution, Anthony decided to forgo sugar for a year.

 
travail: /ˈtræveɪl/
an unpleasant experience or situation that involves a lot of hard work, difficulties and/or suffering. Sp. esfuerzo, trabajo duro. E.g. the travails of life in post-war Britain.

in over your head
involved in something that is too difficult for you to deal with. To be involved in a difficult situation that you cannot get out of. E.g. After a week in the new job, I soon realized that I was in over my head. Sean tried to pay his gambling debts, but he was in over his head.
bellicose: /ˈbelɪkəʊs/
having or showing a desire to argue or fight. E.g. The general made some bellicose statements about his country's military strength.

belligerent: /bəˈlɪdʒərənt/
1. unfriendly and aggressive. Hostile. E.g. a belligerent attitude. He is always very belligerent towards me.
2. [only before noun] (formal) (of a country) fighting a war.
E.g. the belligerent countries/states/nations.

backbiting: unpleasant and unkind talk about somebody who is not present. E.g. He was tired of all the backbiting and gossip in the office.

verdant: /ˈvɜːdnt/
(of grass, plants, fields, etc.) fresh and green. E.g. Much of the region's verdant countryside has been destroyed in the hurricane.

trike (also tricycle)
a vehicle similar to a bicycle, but with one wheel at the front and two at the back. E.g. e-trikes for hire.

blight something to spoil or damage something, especially by causing a lot of problems. E.g. His career has been blighted by injuries. An area blighted by unemployment.

blood in the water: The exposure of a competitive weakness in an opponent that arouses increased competitive aggression in others. Likened to the literal presence of blood in water that causes aquatic predators (such as sharks) to seek out and attack prey. E.g. After their opponents' star striker left the match with an injury, the home team smelled blood in the water and brought on their attack with everything they had.

emoji: /ɪˈməʊdʒi/
(pl. emoji, emojis) (from Japanese)
a small digital image used to express an idea or emotion in emails, on the Internet, etc. E.g. Emoji liven up your text messages with tiny smiley faces.

miserly:
1. (of a person) hating to spend money. E.g. a miserly person. He left a miserly tip.
2. (of a quantity or amount) too small. E.g. The prize for the winner will be a miserly £3,500.

topsy-turvy: /ˌtɒpsi ˈtɜːvi/ in a state of great confusion, not well organized. Sp. patas para arriba. E.g. Everything's topsy-turvy in my life at the moment. Her books take you into a topsy-turvy world where you can be sure of nothing. The government's topsy-turvy priorities mean that spending on education remains low.

wreck
1. wreck something to damage or destroy something. E.g.  The building had been wrecked by the explosion. The road was littered with wrecked cars.
2. wreck something (for somebody) to spoil something completely. E.g. The weather wrecked all our plans. A serious injury nearly wrecked his career.
3. wreck something to damage a ship so much that it sinks or can no longer sail. E.g. The ship was wrecked off the coast of France.

be steeped in something
(formal) to have a lot of a particular quality. If something or someone is steeped in something, they are completely surrounded by or involved in it, or know a lot about it. E.g. a city steeped in history. The college is steeped in history/tradition.These ancient scholars were steeped in poetry and painting, as well as maths and astronomy.
momentum: /məˈmentəm/
[uncountable]
the ability to keep increasing or developing. The force that keeps an object moving or keeps an event developing after it has started. Sp. ímpetu, impulso. E.g. The fight for his release gathers momentum (Sp. gana fuerza) each day. They began to lose momentum in the second half of the game. Once you push it, it keeps going under its own momentum. The spacecraft will fly around the earth to gain/gather momentum for its trip to Jupiter. The play loses momentum (= becomes less interesting, energetic, etc.) by its half way stage. In an attempt to give new momentum to their plans, the committee set a date for starting detailed discussions. VERB + MOMENTUM: have The campaign for change now has considerable momentum. | build up, gain, gather, increase The car gathered momentum as it rolled down the hill. | create, give sth, provide | keep up, maintain, sustain | lose The team has lost momentum in recent weeks. | slow
faux pas: /ˌfəʊ ˈpɑː/  (pl. faux pas /ˌfəʊ ˈpɑːz/): an action or a remark that causes embarrassment because it is not socially correct. Sp. metedura de pata. E.g. I committed a faux pas that my friends have never let me forget.
finger-licking: Tasty; delicious. E.g. finger-licking good. A finger-licking meal.

lick/smack your lips
1. to move your tongue over your lips, especially before eating something good. E.g. lip-licking good. A restaurant famous for its lip-smacking steaks
2. (informal) to show that you are excited about something and want it to happen soon. E.g. They were licking their lips at the thought of clinching the deal.
clinch something to succeed in achieving or winning something. E.g. to clinch an argument/a deal/a victory. They clinched a place in the semi-finals.
poppycock: /ˈpɒpikɒk/ nonsense. E.g. He dismissed the allegations as poppycock.
wily: /ˈwaɪli/
clever at getting what you want, and willing to trick people. Cunning. E.g. The boss is a wily old fox. He was outwitted by his wily opponent.
crafty: /ˈkrɑːfti/
clever at getting what you want, especially by indirect or dishonest methods. E.g. He's a crafty old devil. One of the party’s craftiest political strategists. There are times when the only way to win is by a crafty reinterpretation of the rules. That was a crafty move/touch.
make no bones about (doing) something
(informal) to be honest and open about something; to not hesitate to do something. E.g. She made no bones about telling him exactly what she thought of him.
manspreading: /ˈmænspredɪŋ/ the practice of a man sitting on public transport with his legs wide apart, taking up more space than he needs and preventing other people from sitting down. E.g. The subway authority ran a poster campaign against manspreading.

travail: /ˈtræveɪl/
an unpleasant experience or situation that involves a lot of hard work, difficulties and/or suffering. Sp. esfuerzo, trabajo duro. E.g. the travails of life in post-war Britain.

in over your head
involved in something that is too difficult for you to deal with. To be involved in a difficult situation that you cannot get out of. E.g. After a week in the new job, I soon realized that I was in over my head. Sean tried to pay his gambling debts, but he was in over his head.
bellicose: /ˈbelɪkəʊs/
having or showing a desire to argue or fight. E.g. The general made some bellicose statements about his country's military strength.

belligerent: /bəˈlɪdʒərənt/
1. unfriendly and aggressive. Hostile. E.g. a belligerent attitude. He is always very belligerent towards me.
2. [only before noun] (formal) (of a country) fighting a war.
E.g. the belligerent countries/states/nations.

backbiting: unpleasant and unkind talk about somebody who is not present. E.g. He was tired of all the backbiting and gossip in the office.

verdant: /ˈvɜːdnt/
(of grass, plants, fields, etc.) fresh and green. E.g. Much of the region's verdant countryside has been destroyed in the hurricane.

trike (also tricycle)
a vehicle similar to a bicycle, but with one wheel at the front and two at the back. E.g. e-trikes for hire.

blight something to spoil or damage something, especially by causing a lot of problems. E.g. His career has been blighted by injuries. An area blighted by unemployment.

blood in the water: The exposure of a competitive weakness in an opponent that arouses increased competitive aggression in others. Likened to the literal presence of blood in water that causes aquatic predators (such as sharks) to seek out and attack prey. E.g. After their opponents' star striker left the match with an injury, the home team smelled blood in the water and brought on their attack with everything they had.

emoji: /ɪˈməʊdʒi/
(pl. emoji, emojis) (from Japanese)
a small digital image used to express an idea or emotion in emails, on the Internet, etc. E.g. Emoji liven up your text messages with tiny smiley faces.

miserly:
1. (of a person) hating to spend money. E.g. a miserly person. He left a miserly tip.
2. (of a quantity or amount) too small. E.g. The prize for the winner will be a miserly £3,500.

topsy-turvy: /ˌtɒpsi ˈtɜːvi/ in a state of great confusion, not well organized. Sp. patas para arriba. E.g. Everything's topsy-turvy in my life at the moment. Her books take you into a topsy-turvy world where you can be sure of nothing. The government's topsy-turvy priorities mean that spending on education remains low.

wreck
1. wreck something to damage or destroy something. E.g.  The building had been wrecked by the explosion. The road was littered with wrecked cars.
2. wreck something (for somebody) to spoil something completely. E.g. The weather wrecked all our plans. A serious injury nearly wrecked his career.
3. wreck something to damage a ship so much that it sinks or can no longer sail. E.g. The ship was wrecked off the coast of France.

be steeped in something
(formal) to have a lot of a particular quality. If something or someone is steeped in something, they are completely surrounded by or involved in it, or know a lot about it. E.g. a city steeped in history. The college is steeped in history/tradition.These ancient scholars were steeped in poetry and painting, as well as maths and astronomy.
momentum: /məˈmentəm/
[uncountable]
the ability to keep increasing or developing. The force that keeps an object moving or keeps an event developing after it has started. Sp. ímpetu, impulso. E.g. The fight for his release gathers momentum (Sp. gana fuerza) each day. They began to lose momentum in the second half of the game. Once you push it, it keeps going under its own momentum. The spacecraft will fly around the earth to gain/gather momentum for its trip to Jupiter. The play loses momentum (= becomes less interesting, energetic, etc.) by its half way stage. In an attempt to give new momentum to their plans, the committee set a date for starting detailed discussions. VERB + MOMENTUM: have The campaign for change now has considerable momentum. | build up, gain, gather, increase The car gathered momentum as it rolled down the hill. | create, give sth, provide | keep up, maintain, sustain | lose The team has lost momentum in recent weeks. | slow
faux pas: /ˌfəʊ ˈpɑː/  (pl. faux pas /ˌfəʊ ˈpɑːz/): an action or a remark that causes embarrassment because it is not socially correct. Sp. metedura de pata. E.g. I committed a faux pas that my friends have never let me forget.
finger-licking: Tasty; delicious. E.g. finger-licking good. A finger-licking meal.

lick/smack your lips
1. to move your tongue over your lips, especially before eating something good. E.g. lip-licking good. A restaurant famous for its lip-smacking steaks
2. (informal) to show that you are excited about something and want it to happen soon. E.g. They were licking their lips at the thought of clinching the deal.
clinch something to succeed in achieving or winning something. E.g. to clinch an argument/a deal/a victory. They clinched a place in the semi-finals.
poppycock: /ˈpɒpikɒk/ nonsense. E.g. He dismissed the allegations as poppycock.
wily: /ˈwaɪli/
clever at getting what you want, and willing to trick people. Cunning. E.g. The boss is a wily old fox. He was outwitted by his wily opponent.
crafty: /ˈkrɑːfti/
clever at getting what you want, especially by indirect or dishonest methods. E.g. He's a crafty old devil. One of the party’s craftiest political strategists. There are times when the only way to win is by a crafty reinterpretation of the rules. That was a crafty move/touch.
make no bones about (doing) something
(informal) to be honest and open about something; to not hesitate to do something. E.g. She made no bones about telling him exactly what she thought of him.
manspreading: /ˈmænspredɪŋ/ the practice of a man sitting on public transport with his legs wide apart, taking up more space than he needs and preventing other people from sitting down. E.g. The subway authority ran a poster campaign against manspreading.

tattoo: /təˈtuː/  (pl. tattoos)

scourer: /ˈskaʊərə(r)/ (also scouring pad) a small ball of wire or stiff plastic used for cleaning pans.

scrubber:
1. an offensive word for a prostitute or for a woman who has sex with a lot of men
2. a brush or other object that you use for cleaning things, for example pans

at somebody’s behest /bɪˈhest/
(old use or formal) because somebody has ordered or requested it. E.g. at the King’s behest/at the behest of the King.

steamy:
1. full of steam; covered with steam. E.g. a steamy bathroom. steamy windows. the steamy heat of Tokyo.
2. sexually exciting. Erotic. E.g. a steamy love scene
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cajole: /kəˈdʒəʊl/ to make somebody do something by talking to them and being very nice to them. Coax. E.g. cajole somebody (into something/into doing something) He cajoled me into agreeing to do the work. cajole something out of somebody I managed to cajole his address out of them. (+ speech) ‘Please say yes,’ she cajoled. Her voice was soft and cajoling.

coax: /kəʊks/ to persuade somebody to do something by talking to them in a kind and gentle way. E.g.
coax somebody/something (into doing something) She coaxed the horse into coming a little closer. coax somebody/something (into/out of something) He was coaxed out of retirement to help the failing company. coax somebody/something (+ adv./prep.) She had to coax the car along. Police managed to coax the man down from the ledge. coax (somebody/something) + speech ‘Nearly there,’ she coaxed.

beguile:
1. beguile somebody (into doing something)
to trick somebody into doing something, especially by being nice to them. E.g. She beguiled them into believing her version of events.
2. beguile somebody to attract or interest somebody He was beguiled by her beauty. The tapestries continue to beguile all those who visit the cathedral.

cannily: in a way that is intelligent, careful and shows good judgement. E.g. She cannily concealed her delight at his suggestion.

brazenly: /ˈbreɪznli/
openly and without shame, usually about something that people find shocking. Shamelessly. E.g.
She had brazenly admitted allowing him back into the house.

blatantly: /ˈbleɪtəntli/ in an obvious and open way without caring if people are shocked. Flagrantly. E.g.
a blatantly unfair decision. He just blatantly lied about it.

flagrantly: /ˈfleɪɡrəntli/
in a very obvious way and without showing any respect for people, laws, etc. E.g. The plane flagrantly violated a UN no-fly zone.

organic

fair-trade: involving trade which supports producers in developing countries by paying fair prices and making sure that workers have good working conditions and fair pay. E.g. We buy 10% of our bananas from fair-trade sources. A range of fair-trade foods.


rubbish: (British English, informal) (North American English trash) rubbish somebody/something to criticize somebody/something severely or treat them as though they are of no value. E.g. The book was rubbished by the critics. He rubbished all my ideas, saying they were impractical. Trump has rubbished the investigation.

stoic: /ˈstəʊɪk/ (also stoical /ˈstəʊɪkl/) (From the Stoics, a group of ancient Greek philosophers, who believed that wise people should not allow themselves to be affected by painful or pleasant experiences) Able to suffer pain or trouble without complaining or showing what you are feeling. E.g. her stoic endurance. His stoical acceptance of death. We knew she must be in pain, despite her stoic attitude. He showed a stoic resignation towards his fate. Local people were stoical about the damage caused by the hurricane.

hard-pressed: /ˌhɑːd ˈprest/
1. having a lot of problems, especially too much work, and too little time or money. E.g. Hard-pressed junior doctors want shorter working hours. The latest education reforms have put extra pressure on teachers who are already hard-pressed.
2. hard-pressed to do something finding something very difficult to do. E.g. You would be hard-pressed to find a better secretary. Most people would be hard-pressed (= would find it difficult) to name more than half a dozen members of the government. Because of shortages, the emergency services were hard-pressed to deal with the accident.

bedevil: /bɪˈdevl/ bedevil somebody/ something (formal) to cause a lot of problems for somebody/something over a long period of time. Beset. Sp. atormentar. E.g. The expedition was bedevilled by bad weather. This injury bedevilled him throughout his career.
harangue somebody /həˈræŋ/ to speak loudly and angrily in a way that criticizes somebody/something or tries to persuade people to do something. E.g. He walked to the front of the stage and began to harangue the audience.

treasure trove: /ˈtreʒə trəʊv/
1. [uncountable, countable, usually singular] valuable things that are found hidden and whose owner is unknown. E.g. A Roman soldier's pay, found by a metal detector enthusiast in Norfolk, has been declared treasure trove.
2. [countable, usually singular] a place, book, etc. containing many useful or beautiful things. E.g. a treasure trove of information. Though small, this museum is a veritable treasure trove of history.

risk life and limb/risk your neck
to risk being killed or injured in order to do something. E.g. She risked life and limb to save her children from the fire.

purge: /pɜːdʒ/
1. to remove people from an organization, often violently, because their opinions or activities are unacceptable to the people in power. E.g. purge something (of somebody) His first act as leader was to purge the party of extremists. Stalin purged Soviet libraries of all books which departed from the official party line. purge somebody (from something) He purged extremists from the party.
2. to make yourself/somebody/something pure, healthy or clean by getting rid of bad thoughts or feelings. E.g. purge yourself/somebody/something (of something) We need to purge our sport of racism. purge something (from something) Nothing could purge the guilt from her mind.
3.  To vomit or force oneself to vomit, especially as a symptom of an eating disorder. E.g. Binging (also bingeing) and purging.
 

Necessity is the mother of invention:  the primary driving force for most new inventions is a need. E.g. We can't afford expensive paper to paint on so we use old envelopes and newspaper. They do say necessity is the mother of invention.
heave, heaved, heaved:
1. to lift, pull or throw somebody/something very heavy with one great effort. E.g. heave something/somebody/yourself + adv./prep. I managed to heave the trunk down the stairs. They heaved the body overboard. He heaved himself out of his armchair. + adv./prep. We all heaved on the rope. Heave away lads!
2. to rise up and down with strong, regular movements. E.g. The boat heaved beneath them. heave with something Her shoulders heaved with laughter.
3. heave a sigh, etc. to make a sound slowly and often with effort. E.g. We all heaved a sigh of relief. She heaved a long sigh.
4. to experience the tight feeling in your stomach that you get before you vomit E.g. The thought of it makes me heave. His stomach heaved.
5. heave into sight/view
(formal) (especially of ships) to appear, especially when moving gradually closer from a long way off. E.g. A ship hove into sight. Like a galleon in full sail, Cara hove into view. (Hove is usually used for the past tense and past participle in this idiom.)

liveable (also livable)
1. (British English also liveable in [not before noun]) (of a house, etc.) fit to live in. Habitable. E.g. safer and more liveable residential areas. The place looks liveable in.
2. (of life) worth living. Endurable. E.g. It’s not the best kind of life, but it’s liveable.
3. liveable with that can be dealt with. E.g. The problem is paying the mortgage—everything else is liveable with.
4. (of a wage, etc.) enough to live on. E.g. a liveable salary.

mainstay (of something) a person or thing that is the most important part of something and enables it to exist or be successful. E.g. He is the mainstay of our theatre group. Cocoa is the country's economic mainstay. Love songs form the mainstay of his act.

doddering: ( also doddery)
weak, slow and not able to walk in a steady way, especially because you are old. E.g. a doddering old fool. A doddery old man.

achingly: (of qualities or feelings) very great and affecting you deeply.
E.g. an achingly beautiful song.

sparsely: /ˈspɑːsli/  with only small amounts or numbers of something, often spread over a large area. E.g. a sparsely populated area. A sparsely furnished room.

momentum: /məˈmentəm/
the ability to keep increasing or developing. E.g. The fight for his release gathers momentum each day. They began to lose momentum in the second half of the game. I want to keep the momentum going.

mainstay (of something) a person or thing that is the most important part of something and enables it to exist or be successful. E.g. He is the mainstay of our theatre group. Cocoa is the country's economic mainstay. Love songs form the mainstay of his act. A mainstay of the city's social scene.

commiseration:
/kəˌmɪzəˈreɪʃn/
an expression of sympathy for somebody who has had something unpleasant happen to them, especially not winning a competition. E.g. I offered him my commiseration. Commiserations to the losing team!
My commiserations to the runner-up (Sp. lo siento mucho por el que ha llegado segundo). Commiserations on losing the match! She gave me a look of commiseration as I entered the room.

hone: /həʊn/ to develop and improve something, especially a skill, over a period of time. E.g. hone something She honed her debating skills at college. It was a finely honed piece of writing. hone something to something His body was honed to perfection. He honed his military skills.

monkey (around) with something: to play with or use something in a way that could damage it. E.g. Who’s been monkeying around with my tools?

swimmingly: without any problems or difficulties. E.g. We hope everything will go swimmingly.
vogue: (V) vogued, vogueing or voguing, vogues. To dance by striking a series of rigid, stylized poses, evocative of fashion models during photograph shoots. E.g. I remember voguing.

Travel:
solo: /ˈsəʊləʊ/
(adj) done by one person alone, without anyone helping them. E.g.  his first solo flight. a solo effort. Flash Pack is a website about solo travel.
(adv) alone, without anyone helping you. E.g. She wanted to fly solo across the Atlantic.

white-glove: offering, involving, or treated with special care and attention. E.g. The star got white-glove treatment wherever she went. White-glove treatment.

pamper somebody
(sometimes disapproving) to take care of somebody very well and make them feel as comfortable as possible. E.g. Pamper yourself with our new range of beauty treatments. A spoilt and pampered child.

cosset somebody /ˈkɒsɪt/ (often disapproving) to treat somebody with a lot of care and give them a lot of attention, sometimes too much. E.g. As a child, she had been spoiled and cosseted.
Children sometimes need to be cosseted.

indelible: /ɪnˈdeləbl/
1. impossible to forget or remove. Permanent. E.g. The experience made an indelible impression on me. Her unhappy childhood left an indelible mark. I have an indelible memory of that meeting with Anastasia. In his 20 years working for the company, Joe Pearson made an indelible impression on it.
2. (of ink, pens, etc.) leaving a mark that cannot be removed. Permanent. E.g. an indelible marker. Indelible ink. The blood had left an indelible mark on her shirt.

Relationships:
drift apart
fix someone up
ask someone out
fall for someone
Break up
: E.g. I didn't see any red flags when I saw them just a couple of days before they broke up.

dote on somebody
/ dote upon somebody
to feel and show great love for somebody, ignoring their faults. E.g. He dotes on his children.

stunted
: /ˈstʌntɪd/ that has not been able to grow or develop as much as it should. E.g. stunted trees. the stunted lives of children deprived of education.

scurry: /ˈskʌri/
+ adv./prep. to run with quick short steps. E.g. She said goodbye and scurried back to work. Ants scurried around the pile of rotting food. The shots sent everyone scurrying for cover. We scurried for cover.

secret sauce:
A special feature or technique kept secret by an organization and regarded as being the chief factor in its success. E.g. The app's secret sauce is its simple interface. That's their secret sauce.
refuse collector /ˈrefjuːs kəlektə(r)/ (also refuse worker, dustman) a person whose job is to remove waste from outside houses, etc.

clickbait: (N) /ˈklɪkbeɪt/
material put on the Internet in order to attract attention and encourage visitors to click on a link to a particular web page. E.g. The website says it aims to reduce the number of clickbait headlines.

drop the ball:
(North American English, informal) to make a mistake and spoil something that you are responsible for. E.g. Let’s not drop the ball on this.

purty: (also purdy)
US informal
as adjective ‘the lights were purty’ He is looking so purty.
non-standard spelling of pretty, used to represent dialect speech.
as adverb ‘it was a purdy terrific day’

blockhead: a very stupid person. E.g. three blockheads came in and sat directly behind us.
a close call/shave
(informal) a situation in which you only just manage to avoid an accident, etc. E.g. It was a close call for residents when a tornado swept through just west of the town. Getting to the airport on time was a close call.

crony: /ˈkrəʊni/
(pl. cronies) (often disapproving)
a person that somebody spends a lot of time with. E.g. He was playing cards with his cronies.

hunky-dory: /ˌhʌŋki ˈdɔːri/
if you say that everything is hunky-dory, you mean that there are no problems and that everyone is happy.

shibboleth: /ˈʃɪbəleθ/
1. an old idea, principle or phrase that is no longer accepted by many people as important or appropriate to modern life. E.g. the crumbling of old political shibboleths.
They still cling to many of the old shibboleths of education.
2. a custom, word, etc. that distinguishes one group of people from another.
From a Hebrew word meaning ‘ear of corn’. In the Bible story, Jephthah, the leader of the Gileadites, was able to use it as a test to tell which were his own men, because others found the ‘sh’ sound difficult to pronounce.
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Cool beans: Used to express approval or delight. Excellent. E.g.‘They went to Europe? Cool beans’. Tacos for dinner? Cool beans!

rabid: /ˈræbɪd/ /ˈreɪbɪd/
1. [usually before noun] (disapproving) (of a type of person) having very strong feelings about something and acting in an unacceptable way. Sp. rabioso. E.g. rabid right-wing fanatics. the rabid tabloid press.
2. [usually before noun] (disapproving) (of feelings or opinions) violent or extreme. E.g. rabid speculation.
3. suffering from rabies. E.g. a rabid dog

in tandem (with somebody/something)
a thing that works or happens in tandem with something else works together with it or happens at the same time as it. E.g. The two systems are designed to work in tandem. Stock prices pushed sharply higher this afternoon in tandem with a rise in the dollar.

currency:
1. [countable, uncountable] the system of money that a country uses
2. [uncountable] the fact that something is used or accepted by a lot of people. Sp. aceptación, popularidad. E.g. The term ‘post-industrial’ now has wide currency. The qualification has gained currency all over the world. The term gained currency in the 60s.

bash:
1. to hit somebody/something very hard. E.g. bash somebody/something He bashed her over the head with a hammer. bash into somebody/something I braked too late and bashed into the car in front.
2. bash somebody/something to criticize somebody/something strongly. E.g. Bashing politicians is normal practice in the press. a liberal-bashing administration.

bashing: (N)
1. (used especially in newspapers) very strong criticism of a person or group. E.g. union-bashing. There's been a lot of banker-bashing lately.
2. a physical attack, or a series of attacks, on a person or group of people. E.g. gay-bashing (= attacking homosexuals) to give somebody a bashing. She started bashing her head against the seat in front of her.

bluntly: /ˈblʌntli/ in a very direct way, without trying to be polite or kind. E.g. To put it bluntly, I want a divorce.
‘Is she dead?’ he asked bluntly.

alias: /ˈeɪliəs/
a false or different name, especially one that is used by a criminal. E.g. He checked into the hotel under an alias.

wind /waɪnd/ wound wound /waʊnd/
wind down
1.               (of a person) to rest or relax after a period of activity or excitement synonym unwind
2.               (of a piece of machinery) to go slowly and then stop
wind sth down:
to bring a business, an activity, etc. to an end gradually over a period of time. E.g. The government is winding down its nuclear programme.
The department is being wound down after the election.

master’s (also master’s degree) a second university degree, or, in Scotland, a first university degree, such as an MA. E.g. He has a Master's in Business Administration.

clutch:
the pedal in a car or other vehicle that you press with your foot so that you can change gear. E.g. Put your foot on the clutch.
a clutch of something
[singular] a group of people, animals or things. E.g. He's won a whole clutch of awards.
clutch: a group of eggs that a bird lays at one time; the young birds that come out of a group of eggs at the same time.

clutch: (V)
to hold somebody/something tightly
clutch something (+ adv./prep.) He clutched the child to him. She stood there, the flowers still clutched in her hand. + adv./prep. I clutched on to the chair for support.

diatribe /ˈdaɪətraɪb/
diatribe (against somebody/something) (formal) a long and angry speech or piece of writing attacking and criticizing somebody/something. E.g. He launched a bitter diatribe against the younger generation.

slag:
1. [uncountable] the waste material that remains after metal has been removed from rock.
2. [countable] (British English, slang) an offensive word for a woman, used to suggest that she has a lot of sexual partners

suave: /swɑːv/ (especially of a man) confident, elegant and polite, sometimes in a way that does not seem sincere. E.g. The manager was suave and sophisticated. He gave his usual suave performance. He plays a suave and sophisticated detective.

musing: /ˈmjuːzɪŋ/ [uncountable, countable, usually plural] a period of thinking carefully about something or telling people your thoughts about it. Your thoughts or comments on something you have been thinking about carefully and for a long time. E.g. His musings on everything from sex to religion are profound. We had to sit and listen to his musings on life. We had to listen to his musings about his upbringing.

cause something for somebody The bad weather is causing problems for many farmers.
cause somebody something The project is still causing him a lot of problems.

lunch: to have lunch, especially at a restaurant. E.g. He lunched with a client at the Ritz.

sporty: liking or good at sport. E.g. I'm not very sporty

span: the length of time that something lasts or is able to continue. E.g. I worked with him over a span of six years. The project must be completed within a specific time span. Small children have a short attention span. a study of the entire span of Arab history.

set your sights on something/on doing something
to decide that you want something and to try very hard to get it. E.g.  She's set her sights on getting into Harvard. I had set my sights on a career in journalism.

set your heart on something, have your heart set on something
to want something very much. E.g. They’ve set their heart on a house in the country.

outstay/overstay your welcome
to stay somewhere as a guest longer than you are wanted. E.g. They were busy so I left - I didn't want to outstay my welcome.

blame somebody/something (for something) She doesn't blame anyone for her father's death. A dropped cigarette is being blamed for the fire.
blame something on somebody/something Police are blaming the accident on dangerous driving.

sponsor: a person who agrees to be officially responsible for another person. E.g. Syrians must be sponsored by a Lebanese citizen.

all/just the same: despite this. Nevertheless. E.g. He's not very reliable, but I like him just the same. ‘Will you stay for lunch?’ ‘No, but thanks all the same.’ All the same, there's some truth in what she says.

flood in | flood into/out of something to arrive or go somewhere in large numbers. E.g. Refugees continue to flood into neighbouring countries. Telephone calls came flooding in from all over the country.

make sth up:
to form something. Constitute /ˈkɒnstɪtjuːt/. E.g. Women make up 56% of the student numbers.

I'm under orders not to let anyone in. The ship was to set sail at once, on the admiral's orders.
She takes orders only from the president. carry out/ execute /ˈeksɪkjuːt// follow/ obey/ orders.

set something up

to build something or put something somewhere. E.g. The police set up roadblocks on routes out of the city. Refugee camps are being set up.

mindful of somebody/something | mindful that… (formal) remembering somebody/something and considering them or it when you do something. Conscious. E.g. mindful of our responsibilities. Mindful of the danger of tropical storms, I decided not to go out. She is mindful that the election result was very close last time.

defer (doing) something /dɪˈfɜː(r)/ (formal) to delay something until a later time. Put off. E.g.  The department deferred the decision for six months. She had applied for deferred admission to college.

hotbed of something a place where a lot of a particular activity, especially something bad or violent, is happening. E.g. The area was a hotbed of crime.

stoke: /stəʊk/
1. stoke something (up) (with something) to add fuel to a fire, etc. Sp. avivar, atizar. E.g. to stoke up a fire with more coal. to stoke a furnace.
2. stoke something (up) to make people feel something more strongly. E.g. to stoke up envy. The publicity was intended to stoke up interest in her music. His departure has stoked fears that the company is planning job cuts.
3. stoke something (up) to make something increase or develop more quickly. E.g. They were accused of stoking the crisis. The measures would stoke up inflation. These developments helped stoke the credit boom. Increased borrowing was stoking up a consumer boom. They were blamed for stoking the civil war.

outfit: a group of people working together as an organization, business, team, etc. E.g. a market research outfit. This was the fourth album by the top rock outfit. A monitoring outfit.

grapple: /ˈɡræpl/
1. to take a firm hold of somebody/something and struggle with them. E.g. grapple (with somebody/something) Passers-by grappled with the man after the attack. grapple somebody/something (+ adv./prep.) They managed to grapple him to the ground.
2. to try hard to find a solution to a problem. E.g. grapple with something The new government has yet to grapple with the problem of air pollution. a government trying to grapple with inflation. an attempt to grapple with this very difficult issue. grapple to do something I was grappling /ˈɡræplɪŋ/ to find an answer to his question. Policymakers grapple with the problems facing the crisis-hit countries.

cloud something to make something less pleasant or enjoyable. E.g. His last years were clouded by financial worries. The clouded outlook for the global economy.

blanch:
1. blanch (at something)
(formal) to become pale because you are shocked or frightened. E.g. He blanched visibly when he heard the news.
2. blanch something to prepare food, especially vegetables, by putting it into boiling water for a short time. E.g.  Blanch the peas quickly before you freeze them.

cascade: (N) /kæˈskeɪd/
1. a small waterfall, especially one of several falling down a steep slope with rocks.
2. a large amount of water falling or pouring down. E.g. a cascade of rainwater
3. a number of things happening, in which each one leads to another. E.g. The protein can trigger a cascade of events that leads to heart failure.

wont (to do something) /wəʊnt/ (adj) (old-fashioned, formal) in the habit of doing something. Accustomed. E.g. He was wont to fall asleep after supper.
wont (N) something a person often does. Habit. E.g. She got up early, as was her wont.

vengeful: /ˈvendʒfl/ showing a desire to punish somebody who has harmed you. E.g. He was not a vengeful man. What had he done to make Jane so vengeful and bitter?

cascade: (V) /kæˈskeɪd/
1. to flow downwards in large amounts. E.g. Water cascaded down the mountainside.
2. to fall or hang in large amounts. E.g. Blonde hair cascaded over her shoulders.
3. to pass information, knowledge, etc. to a person or group so that they can pass it on to others; to be passed on in this way. E.g. cascade something (to somebody) Managers cascade training to the health workers on how to enrol women into the study. cascade to somebody It is vital to ensure these values cascade to all employees.

fling, flung, flung:
1. fling somebody/something + adv./prep. to throw somebody/something somewhere with force, especially because you are angry. Hurl. E.g. Someone had flung a brick through the window. He flung her to the ground. The door was suddenly flung open. I was flung forward by the impact. He had his enemies flung into prison.
2. fling yourself/something + adv./prep. to move yourself or part of your body suddenly and with a lot of force. E.g. She flung herself onto the bed. He flung out an arm to stop her from falling.

3. fling something (at somebody) | + speech to say something to somebody in an aggressive way. Hurl. E.g. They were flinging insults at each other.

spare: to save somebody/yourself from having to go through an unpleasant experience. E.g. spare somebody/yourself something He wanted to spare his mother any anxiety. Please spare me (= do not tell me) the gruesome details. You could have spared yourself an unnecessary trip by phoning in advance. spare somebody/yourself from something She was spared from the ordeal of appearing in court.

poise: /pɔɪz/ (N)
1. a calm and confident manner with control of your feelings or behaviour. E.g. His performance was full of maturity and poise. She seemed embarrassed for a moment but quickly recovered her poise.
2. the ability to move or stand in an elegant way with good control of your body.

preponderance: /prɪˈpɒndərəns/ if there is a preponderance of one type of people or things in a group, there are more of them than others. Predominance. E.g. There is still a preponderance of male managers in the profession.

elicit: /iˈlɪsɪt/
elicit something (from somebody) (formal) to get information or a reaction from somebody, often with difficulty. E.g. I could elicit no response from him. Her tears elicited great sympathy from her audience. His remark elicited spontaneous applause.
 
languid: /ˈlæŋɡwɪd/ moving slowly in an elegant manner, not needing energy or effort. E.g. a languid wave of the hand. a languid afternoon in the sun.

cantankerous: /kænˈtæŋkərəs/ bad-tempered and always complaining. E.g. a cantankerous old man.
curmudgeon: /kɜːˈmʌdʒən/ a bad-tempered person, often an old one.

derisive: /dɪˈraɪsɪv/ unkind and showing that you think somebody/something is ridiculous. E.g. She gave a short, derisive laugh. His voice was savagely derisive. The speech was met with laughter and derisive comments. Sp. El discurso se recibió con risas y comentarios burlones.

scrimmage: /ˈskrɪmɪdʒ/
1. a confused struggle or fight. Scrum. E.g. There was a bit of a scrimmage with the reporters waiting outside.

volley: /ˈvɒli/
1. (in some sports, for example tennis or football (soccer )) a hit or kick of the ball before it touches the ground. Sp. derecha, drive, derechazo.E.g. She hit a forehand volley into the net.
2. a lot of bullets, stones, etc. that are fired or thrown at the same time. E.g. A volley of shots rang out. Police fired a volley over the heads of the crowd.
3. a lot of questions, comments, insults, etc. that are directed at somebody quickly one after the other. Torrent. E.g. She faced a volley of angry questions from her mother.

shipping crate: large container for cargo. Sp. contenedor.

hail:
1. to describe somebody/something as being very good or special, especially in newspapers, etc. hail somebody/something as something The conference was hailed as a great success. The expedition was widely hailed as a success. Union leaders hailed the socialists’ victory as a huge step forward. hail somebody/something + noun Teenager Matt Brown is being hailed a hero for saving a young child from drowning.
2. hail something to signal to a taxi or a bus, in order to get the driver to stop. E.g. to hail a taxi/cab.
3. when it hails, small balls of ice fall like rain from the sky. E.g. It's hailing!

fabled: /ˈfeɪbld/
 famous and often talked about, but rarely seen. Legendary /ˈledʒəndri/. E.g. a fabled monster. For the first week he never actually saw the fabled Jack. Since that fabled day in 1992 I have not seen him.

bob: to move or make something move quickly up and down, especially in water. E.g. an old cigarette packet bobbing along in the current. bob up and down Tiny boats bobbed up and down in the harbour. bob something (up and down) She bobbed her head nervously. The maid bobbed a curtsy (/ˈkɜːtsi/ a formal sign made by a woman in a dance or to say hello or goodbye to an important person, by bending her knees with one foot in front of the other).

wash sth up: to carry something onto land. E.g. The body was found washed up on a beach. Cargo from the wrecked ship was washed up on the shore.

gyre: /ˈdʒʌɪə/ /ˈɡʌɪə/
1. A spiral or vortex.
2. A circular pattern of currents in an ocean basin. E.g. ‘the North Pacific gyre is home to the Great Pacific Ocean Garbage Patch’

vortex
: /ˈvɔːteks/ (pl. vortexes, vortices
BrE /ˈvɔːtɪsiːz/)
1. a mass of air, water, etc. that spins around very fast and pulls things into its centre.
2. a very powerful feeling or situation that you cannot avoid or escape from. E.g. They were caught up in a whirling vortex of emotion.

plight: /plaɪt/ a difficult and sad situation. E.g. the plight of the homeless. The African elephant is in a desperate plight.

cramp something to prevent the development or progress of somebody/something. Restrict. E.g.
Tighter trade restrictions might cramp economic growth. She cramps my style.

charge:
to give somebody a responsibility or task.

charge somebody with something The committee has been charged with the development of sport in the region.

charge somebody with doing something The governing body is charged with managing the school within its budget.

egregious: /ɪˈɡriːdʒiəs/ extremely bad. E.g. egregious behaviour. an egregious error
covet something /ˈkʌvət/ (formal) to want something very much, especially something that belongs to somebody else. E.g. He had long coveted the chance to work with a famous musician. They are this year's winners of the coveted trophy (= that everyone would like to win).

char (something) to become black by burning; to make something black by burning it. E.g. By the time firefighters arrived the bus was charred beyond recognition.

upsell: /ˈʌpsel/ to persuade a customer to buy more products or a more expensive product than they originally intended. E.g. You can usually upsell to about half the customers. Sales staff get bonuses based on the ability to upsell.

upselling:/ʌpˈselɪŋ/ /ˈʌpselɪŋ/ the activity of persuading customers to buy more products or a more expensive product than they originally intended.
E.g. You can make great profits from upselling.

upsize: /ˌʌpˈsaɪz/
1. to change to something larger or greater. E.g. We need to upsize the entire computer system. upsize to sth Buyers upsizing to a larger house transfer their existing home to a buy-to-let mortgage.
2. to make a company or organization larger by increasing the number of people working for it:We are upsizing by 12% over the next two years.
 
hapless: /ˈhæpləs/ not lucky; unfortunate. E.g. the hapless victims of exploitation. Often the hapless victims have no warning that the flood is on its way.

oily: (disapproving) (of a person or their behaviour) trying to be too polite, in a way that is annoying. obsequious /əbˈsiːkwiəs/. E.g. an oily smile. He was an oily and repulsive little man. An oily impresario.

impresario: /ˌɪmprəˈsɑːriəʊ/ a person who arranges plays in the theatre, etc., especially a person who manages a theatre, opera or ballet company.

obsequious /əbˈsiːkwiəs/ trying too hard to please somebody, especially somebody who is important. Servile. E.g. an obsequious manner. The waiters came hurrying forward with obsequious smiles on their faces.

servile: /ˈsɜːvaɪl/ wanting too much to please somebody and obey them. E.g. Parents have no right to demand servile obedience from their children.

pogo stick: /ˈpəʊɡəʊ stɪk/ a pole with a bar to stand on and a spring at the bottom, that you jump around on for fun.

tinker (with something) to make small changes to something in order to repair or improve it, especially in a way that may not be helpful. Sp. juguetear, apañar. E.g. He’s in the garage tinkering with his bike. The password will prevent others from tinkering with your data. The government is merely tinkering at the edges of a much wider problem. He spends every weekend tinkering (around) with his car.I wish the government would stop tinkering with the health service. The government is tinkering with EU laws.

autumnal: /ɔːˈtʌmnəl/ like or connected with autumn. E.g.  autumnal colours/sunshine/days.

sepsis: /ˈsepsɪs/
an infection of part of the body in which pus is produced. E.g. it took him two years to uncover how the tell-tale signs of suspected sepsis were missed.

pus: /pʌs/ a thick yellowish or greenish liquid that is produced in an infected wound The wound had not healed properly and was oozing pus.

telltale: (adj) showing that something exists or has happened. Revealing. E.g. telltale clues/ marks/ signs/ sounds. The telltale smell of cigarettes told her that he had been in the room. Pus-filled sores are a telltale symptom of chicken pox.

telltale: (n) a child who tells an adult what another child has done wrong. E.g. The gang eventually found the telltale and killed him.

slur: /slɜː(r)/
slur something | + speech to pronounce words in a way that is not clear so that they run into each other, usually because you are drunk or tired. E.g. She had drunk too much and her speech was slurred. Her speech was slurred but she still denied she was drunk.

slur: slur (on somebody/something) an unfair remark about somebody/something that may damage other people’s opinion of them. Insult. E.g. She had dared to cast a slur on his character.  The crowd started throwing bottles and shouting racial slurs. Her letter contained several outrageous slurs against/on her former colleagues. His comments cast a slur on the integrity of his employees.

in the saddle:
1. in a position of authority and control. E.g. He wanted a united party, with himself firmly in the saddle.
2. riding a horse. E.g. Three weeks after the accident he was back in the saddle.

delude: /dɪˈluːd/ to make somebody believe something that is not true. Deceive. E.g.
delude somebody You poor deluded creature. delude yourself He's deluding himself if he thinks it's going to be easy. delude somebody/yourself into doing something Don't be deluded into thinking that we are out of danger yet. delude yourself that…
She had been deluding herself that he loved her.

delusion: /dɪˈluːʒn/
1. a false belief or opinion about yourself or your situation. E.g. the delusions of the mentally ill. Don't go getting delusions of grandeur /ˈɡrændʒə(r)/ /ˈɡrændjə(r)/ (= a belief that you are more important than you actually are). He was suffering from paranoid delusions and hallucinations. Love can be nothing but a delusion.
2. the act of believing or making yourself believe something that is not true. E.g. He seems to have retreated into a world of fear and delusion.

come by something
1. to manage to get something. E.g. Jobs are hard to come by these days.
2. to receive something. E.g. How did you come by that scratch on your cheek?

dire: very serious. E.g. living in dire poverty. dire warnings/threats. Such action may have dire consequences. We're in dire need of your help. The firm is in dire straits (= in a very difficult situation) and may go bankrupt. The situation there sounds very dire indeed.

seethe (with something) (formal) (of a place) to be full of a lot of people or animals, especially when they are all moving around. E.g. The resort is seething with tourists all year round. He became caught up in a seething mass of arms and legs. There is currently a seething mass of tourists on the island.

stack up:
1. to keep increasing in quantity until there is a large pile, a long line, etc. Cars quickly stacked up behind the bus. During the strike, refuse has been stacking up in the streets.
2. (used especially in questions or in negatives) to compare with somebody/something else; to be as good as somebody/something else. measure up (to something/somebody). E.g. Let's try him in the job and see how he stacks up. stack up against somebody/something A mobile home simply doesn't stack up against a traditional house.
3. (used especially in negatives) to seem reasonable; to make sense That can't be right. It just doesn't stack up.

lay down: if you lay down a rule or a principle, you state officially that people must obey it or use it E.g. You can't lay down hard and fast rules. it is laid down that… It is laid down that all candidates must submit three copies of their dissertation.

get into your stride (British English) (North American English hit (your) stride)
to begin to do something with confidence and at a good speed after a slow, uncertain start. E.g. After a nervous start, he finally got into his stride in the second set. Teachers need a couple of years before they get into their stride.

dexterity: /dekˈsterəti/
skill in using your hands or your mind. The ability to perform a difficult action quickly and skilfully with the hands, or the ability to think quickly and effectively. E.g. You need manual dexterity to be good at video games. mental/verbal dexterity. Julius does not have a lot of dexterity in playing the piano (Sp.
Julius no tiene mucha destreza para tocar el piano). He caught the ball with great dexterity. He answered the reporters' questions with all the dexterity of a politician.

dexterous:
/ˈdekstrəs/ (also dextrous)
skilful with your hands; skilfully done. E.g. a dexterous movement.

dexterously:
/ˈdekstrəsli/ (also dextrously). In a skilful way, especially with your hands. E.g. She quickly and dexterously gathered it all up in her free hand.

sideline:
1. sideline somebody to prevent somebody from playing in a team, especially because of an injury. E.g. The player has been sidelined by a knee injury.
2. sideline somebody to prevent somebody from having an important part in something that other people are doing. E.g. The vice-president is increasingly being sidelined.

kick up your heels: to be relaxed and enjoy yourself. To do things that you enjoy. E.g. After final exams we kicked up our heels and had a really good party. In spring people dash outdoors to kick up their heels and join in their favourite sports.

kick your heels
to have nothing to do while you are waiting for somebody/something. E.g. We were kicking our heels, waiting for some customers. They were forced to kick their heels for nearly a quarter of an hour.

back in the days
at a particular time in the past. E.g. I was a fan back in the days when the band wasn't yet famous.

permissiveness: /pəˈmɪsɪvnəs/ the quality of allowing or showing a freedom of behaviour that many people do not approve of, especially in sexual matters. E.g. the growth of permissiveness. the increasing permissiveness of modern society.

Amazonian: Relating to or denoting the River Amazon or its surrounding region. E.g. ‘the Amazonian rainforest’

the straight and narrow
(informal) the honest and morally acceptable way of living. E.g. His wife is trying to keep him on the straight and narrow. The threat of a good beating should keep him on the straight and narrow.

pandemonium: /ˌpændəˈməʊniəm/
a situation in which there is a lot of noise, activity and confusion, especially because people are feeling angry or frightened. Chaos. E.g. Pandemonium broke out when the news was announced. There was pandemonium in the classroom till the head appeared.

whoosh: /wʊʃ/ a soft sound made by something moving fast through the air or like that made when air is pushed out of something. E.g. The train sped through the station with a whoosh. A whooshing sound.

trample:
1. to step heavily on somebody/something so that you crush or harm them/it with your feet. E.g. trample somebody/something People were trampled underfoot in the rush for the exit. He was trampled to death by a runaway horse. trample somebody/something down The campers had trampled the corn down. trample on/over something Don't trample on the flowers!
2. trample (on/over) somebody/something to ignore somebody’s feelings or rights and treat them as if they are not important. E.g. The government is trampling on the views of ordinary people. She would not let him trample over her any longer.

underfoot: /ˌʌndəˈfʊt/
under your feet; on the ground where you are walking. E.g. The ground was dry and firm underfoot. I was nearly trampled underfoot by the crowd of people rushing for the door.

wedge: a piece of wood, rubber, metal, etc. with one thick end and one thin pointed end that you use to keep a door open, to keep two things apart, or to split wood or rock. E.g. He hammered the wedge into the crack in the stone. (figurative) I don't want to drive a wedge between the two of you (= to make you start disliking each other). Baby-making miscommunication drives a wedge between Adam and Tina.

graze: (V)
1. (of cows, sheep, etc.) to eat grass that is growing in a field. E.g. There were cows grazing beside the river. graze on something The horses were grazing on the lush grass. graze something The field had been grazed by sheep.
2. graze something to put cows, sheep, etc. in a field so that they can eat the grass there The land is used by local people to graze their animals.
3. graze (on something) (informal) to eat small amounts of food many times during the day, often while doing other things, instead of eating three meals. E.g. I have this really bad habit of grazing on junk food. Some patients find it better to graze, eating lots of small snacks throughout the day. Grazing is becoming the American way of eating. Food grazing can lead to obesity.
4. graze something (on something) to break the surface of your skin by rubbing it against something rough. Sp. hacerse un rasguño. E.g. I fell and grazed my knee. He grazed his elbow on a sharp piece of rock.
5. graze something to touch something lightly while passing it. E.g. The bullet grazed his cheek.

graze: (N) a small injury where the surface of the skin has been slightly broken by rubbing against something. Sp. rasguño. E.g. Adam walked away from the crash with just cuts and grazes.

(packed, crammed, etc.) like sardines /ˌsɑːˈdiːnz/
(informal) pressed tightly together in a way that is uncomfortable or unpleasant. E.g. We were packed in like sardines.

shoulder to shoulder (with somebody)
1. physically close to somebody. E.g. The large crowd stood shoulder to shoulder in the stands.
2. as one group that has the same aims, opinions, etc.

cheek by jowl (with somebody/something)
very close to somebody/something. E.g. The guests, packed cheek by jowl, parted as he entered.

cross-curricular: /ˌkrɒs kəˈrɪkjələ(r)/
affecting or connected with different parts of the school curriculum. Sp. multidisciplinario. E.g. introduce cross-curricular activities when teaching English.


SIM card: /ˈsɪm kɑːd/
the abbreviation for ‘subscriber identification module’ (a plastic card inside a mobile/cell phone that stores information to identify the phone and the person using it). E.g. contract SIM vs pay-as-you-go.

pay-as-you-go: /ˌpeɪ əz ˌjuː ˈɡəʊ/
connected with a system of paying for a service just before you use it rather than paying for it later.
E.g. pay-as-you-go phones

mendacious: /menˈdeɪʃəs/
not telling the truth. E.g. mendacious press statements. Some of these statements are misleading and some are downright mendacious. The mendacious official had everyone fooled.


for dear life, for your life
as hard or as fast as possible. E.g. She was holding on to the rope for dear life. Run for your life!

studded: /ˈstʌdɪd/
1. decorated with small raised pieces of metal. E.g. a studded leather belt. a studded dog collar/leather jacket.
2. studded with something having a lot of something on or in it. E.g. The sky was clear and studded with stars. An essay studded with quotations. a baked ham studded with cloves. Elaine looked up at the black, velvety sky studded with tiny, twinkling stars.

foul up (informal) to make a lot of mistakes; to do something badly I've fouled up badly again, haven't I?
foul something up (informal) to spoil something, especially by doing something wrong. E.g. Everything was going really well until Rob came along and fouled things up.
foul-up: (N) /ˈfaʊl ʌp/
a problem caused by bad organization or a stupid mistake. E.g. There was a computer foul-up at the bank and customers were sent the wrong statements. An administrative foul-up.

jostle: /ˈdʒɒsl/ jostle (somebody) to push roughly against somebody in a crowd. to knock or push roughly against someone in order to move past them or get more space when you are in a crowd of people. E.g. The visiting president was jostled by angry demonstrators. People were jostling, arguing and complaining. As we came into the arena, we were jostled by fans pushing their way towards the stage.Photographers jostled and shoved to get a better view of the royal couple.
jostle for something
to compete strongly and with force with other people for something. E.g. People in the crowd were jostling for the best positions. Since the fall of the government, the two opposition parties have been jostling for position.

betcha: /ˈbɛtʃə/
a way of saying or writing “I bet you” in informal speech. Bet you (used to express confidence or certainty that something is the case or will happen).
E.g. Betcha you can't run faster than me! (Te apuesto que no puedes correr más rápido que yo.) Betcha can't leave without at least one home-made goody from the bakery counter. I betcha 98% of Americans wouldn't know who he is’

goody: a thing that is very nice to eat. E.g. a basket of goodies for the children

you betcha (informal)
used to say “yes” when you are very enthusiastic about something. E.g. “Are you going to the game this weekend?” “You betcha!”

go astray
1. to become lost; to be stolen. E.g. Several letters went astray or were not delivered. We locked up our valuables so they would not go astray.
2. to go in the wrong direction or to have the wrong result. E.g.  Fortunately the gunman's shots went astray. Jack's parents thought the other boys might lead him astray (= make him do things that are wrong). The argument is so complex, a reader might easily go astray.

stock up/  stock up on something /stock up with something to buy a lot of something so that you can use it later. Lay sth. in/up. E.g. We ought to stock up on film before our trip.

slowly but surely making slow but definite progress. E.g. We'll get there slowly but surely.

barrel: [intransitive] + adv./prep. to move very fast in a particular direction, especially in a way that you cannot control. E.g. He came barrelling down the hill and smashed into a phone booth.

root for somebody [no passive] (usually used in the progressive tenses) (informal) to support or encourage somebody in a sports competition or when they are in a difficult situation. E.g. We're rooting for the Bulls. Good luck—I'm rooting for you! I’m sure you’ll win. Everyone’s rooting for you

beckon /ˈbekən/
1. [intransitive, transitive] to give somebody a signal using your finger or hand, especially to tell them to move nearer or to follow you. E.g. beckon to somebody (to do something) He beckoned to the waiter to bring the bill. beckon somebody (+ adv./prep.) He beckoned her over with a wave. The boss beckoned him into her office. beckon somebody to do something She beckoned him to come and join them.
2. to appear very attractive to somebody. E.g. The clear blue sea beckoned. beckon somebody The prospect of a month without work was beckoning her.
3. to be something that is likely to happen or will possibly happen to somebody in the future. E.g. For many kids leaving college the prospect of unemployment beckons.

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