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Verbal Advantage – Level 04 Word 21 – Word 30 MCQ Test

Verbal Advantage - Level 04 Word 21 - Word 30 MCQ Test

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Word List

  • Word 21: Prolific [proh-LIF-ik]

Fruitful, fertile, productive.


Antonyms of prolific include unproductive, barren, sterile, impotent (IM-puh-tint), and effete (i-FEET).

Prolific comes from a Latin word meaning offspring, children, progeny. Prolific may mean producing many offspring or much fruit, as a prolific family or a prolific orchard. It may also mean producing many products of the mind, as a prolific writer, a prolific composer. A prolific worker is a productive worker, one whose labor bears much fruit. A prolific period is a fruitful period, one marked by inventiveness and productivity.

  • Word 22: Mundane [MUHN-dayn or muhn-DAYN]

Of the world, worldly, earthly, material as distinguished from spiritual.


Synonyms of mundane include terrestrial, temporal (TEM-puh-rul, stress the first syllable), and secular. An unusual and literary synonym is sublunary (suhb-LOO-nur-ee). Sublunary means literally beneath the moon, and so of the world; sublunary beings are creatures who abide on Earth.

Antonyms of mundane include lofty, heavenly, sublime, celestial, ethereal (word 7 of Level 7), and extraterrestrial, which means literally beyond the earth.

Mundane is often used today to mean ordinary, humdrum, commonplace, banal, unimaginative, prosaic. All current dictionaries list this meaning, but some commentators on usage object to it. They argue that mundane’s specific meaning should be protected, and the word should not be lumped with the many other words that mean ordinary and dull. It is a criticism I would advise you not to take lightly.

Jacques Barzun offers this sentence as an example of the debasement of mundane: “A mundane sex life can be compared to a TV dinner, but it’s not a gourmet banquet.” According to Barzun, “sex life, of whatever kind, is inescapably mundane, and so is a gourmet banquet.”

In strict usage, mundane is reserved for things that are worldly as opposed to heavenly, material as opposed to spiritual, secular as opposed to religious. Mundane affairs are worldly affairs, not ordinary affairs. Mundane writing is not unimaginative or prosaic; it is concerned with worldly matters. Business is by nature mundane because it deals with concrete, material things rather than nebulous spiritual values. Politics is also mundane because it focuses on the issues and problems of the world.

  • Word 23: Myriad [MIR-ee-id]

Countless, innumerable, infinite, consisting of a great or indefinite number.


Originally, the noun a myriad specified ten thousand; in ancient Greece a myriad was a military division composed of ten thousand soldiers. Today the noun myriad is most often used to mean a great or indefinite number, as a myriad of troubles, a myriad of details to attend to.

The adjective myriad means countless, innumerable, infinite, consisting of a great or indefinite number. “On a clear night you can see myriad stars twinkling in the sky”; “A chief executive officer has myriad responsibilities.”

  • Word 24: Dissident [DIS-i-dent]

Disagreeing, disaffected, dissenting, nonconformist.


Dissident comes from the Latin dis-, apart, and sedere, to sit, and by derivation means to sit apart; hence, to withdraw one’s approval or belief, disagree.

The noun a dissident refers to a person who disagrees with a prevailing opinion, method, or doctrine. The word is commonly used today in politics and journalism of someone who opposes the policies and practices of his government. The adjective dissident refers to the nonconforming and disaffected attitude of the dissident. A dissident opinion expresses disagreement; it does not conform to accepted opinion. Dissident activities are activities undertaken in opposition to a prevailing doctrine or authority.

  • Word 25: Laudable [LAW-duh-bul]

Praiseworthy, commendable, worthy of approval or admiration.


Synonyms of laudable include meritorious (MER-i-TOR-ee-us), exemplary (ig-ZEM-pluh-ree, word 39 of this level), and estimable (ES-ti-muh-bul). Antonyms of laudable include contemptibledeplorable (di-PLOR-uh-bul), and ignominious (IG-nuh-MIN-ee-us).

The verb to laud (LAWD, rhymes with sawed) means to praise, commend, extol (ik-STOHL). The adjective laudable means commendable, worthy of praise. Laudable actions, laudable motives, and laudable goals all are praiseworthy, commendable, deserving of approval or admiration.

In Macbeth, Shakespeare writes, “I am in this earthly world, where to do harm/Is often laudable, to do good sometime/Accounted dangerous folly.”

  • Word 26: Inimitable [i-NIM-i-tuh-bul]

Unable to be imitated, copied, or reproduced; beyond compare.


Synonyms of inimitable include matchless, unrivaled, peerless, unparalleled, and surpassing.

The prefix in- often means “in” or “into,” as in the words inhale, to breathe in; ingrain, to rub in, fix in the mind; and ingress (INgres), the way in, the entrance. However, in- is just as often privative (PRIV-uh-tiv); that is, it deprives or takes away the meaning of the word to which it is affixed. Like the prefix un-, the prefix in- often means “not,” as in the words informal, not formal; inaudible, not audible, unable to be heard; and injustice, something that is not fair or just. Our keyword, inimitable, combines this privative prefix in- with the somewhat unusual word imitable, able to be imitated, to mean “not able to be imitated.”

You may use inimitable to describe anything that is one-of-akind, individual, unique. An inimitable style cannot be imitated or copied. An inimitable performance is unrivaled, incomparable (stress on -com-). An inimitable achievement surpasses all other achievements; it is matchless, beyond compare.

  • Word 27: Jaded [JAY-did]

Worn out, tired, fatigued, weary, exhausted; specifically, worn out by overwork or overindulgence.


One meaning of the noun a jade is a worn-out or broken-down horse, a nag. The verb to jade means to be or become like a wornout or broken-down horse. The adjective jaded means like that broken-down horse; specifically, worn out from overwork or overindulgence. When you drive your mind too hard or abuse your body, you become jaded; but you can also become jaded from too much of a good thing, as “Their lovemaking left him jaded.”

In current usage jaded often suggests weariness accompanied by an insensitivity or immunity to something unpleasant: children jaded by abuse; seeing the consequences of so much violent crime had left the detective jaded.

  • Word 28: Myopic [my-AHP-ik, rhymes with dry topic]

Short-sighted; not able to see the long-range picture; having a narrow or circumscribed view; lacking discernment, foresight, or perspective.


Synonyms of myopic include narrow-minded, purblind (PURblynd, rhymes with her kind), and obtuse (uhb-T(Y)OOS). Antonyms of myopic include broad-minded, liberal, tolerant, catholic (note the lowercase c), and latitudinarian (LAT-i-T(Y)OO-di-NAIR-ee-in).

The adjective myopic comes from the noun myopia (my-OH-peeuh), the common medical disorder known as nearsightedness. In its literal sense, myopic means nearsighted, affected with myopia. In its figurative sense, myopic suggests mental nearsightedness, a lack of long-range vision, a mental outlook that is limited or narrow. The myopic person lacks perspective and foresight; he can’t see the big picture. A myopic approach to solving a problem is short-sighted; it lacks imagination and does not address longterm needs or goals. A myopic opinion is narrow-minded and prejudiced; it reflects only what the person who expresses it wants to see.

The words purblind, obtuse, and myopic are close in meaning. Purblind means partly blind, dim-sighted; like myopic, purblind may be used literally to mean half-blind or figuratively to mean lacking insight or imagination. Obtuse comes from a Latin word meaning dull, blunt, and in modern usage obtuse is used to mean mentally dull, slow to recognize or understand something. Myopic means short-sighted, having a limited perspective or narrow view.

  • Word 29: Demonstrable [di-MAHN-struh-buul]

Capable of being demonstrated, able to be proved.


Demonstrable is the noun corresponding to the verb to demonstrate. Demonstrable facts can be demonstrated, presented clearly and shown to be true. A demonstrable statement or opinion is one that can be proved.

Because that which is demonstrable can be demonstrated or proved, the word has also come to be used to mean obvious, apparent, self-evident, as in a demonstrable liar, a demonstrable fool: “When Joe asked Sheila if she would have dinner with him, she took it as a sign of his demonstrable interest in her.”

  • Word 30: Callow [KAL-oh]

Immature, inexperienced, unsophisticated, green, naive, lacking experience in and knowledge of the world.


Callow comes from a Middle English word meaning bald, and the word was formerly used of very young birds to mean without feathers, unfledged. Today both callow and the word fledgling are used of persons, behavior, or things that are immature or inexperienced. A fledgling is a young bird that has just acquired its feathers and is learning to fly. From that original sense, fledgling has come to refer either to a young and inexperienced person or to something that is just getting off the ground, as a fledgling enterprise. Callow suggests an immaturity or inexperience manifested by a lack of sophistication. People who are callow know little of the ways of the world; they are green, still wet behind the ears.

Because callow means immature, it sometimes also suggests childishness or foolishness. For example, a callow remark may be not only unsophisticated but also downright silly. Synonyms of callow in this unfavorable sense include juvenile (preferably JOOvuh-nil, but now also JOO-vuh-nyl, which was originally British), sophomoric (SAHF-uh-MOR-ik), and puerile (PYOOR-ul).

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