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Test Your Vocabulary
“One ought, every day at least, to hear a little song, read a good poem, see a fine picture, and, if it were possible, to speak a few reasonable
—Johann Wolfgang von Goethe
We try to ensure that our vocabulary tests concentrate on “reasonable words.” Do you know the ones listed below? The answers directly follow
A) a port
B) a drunkard
C) a narrow road
D) a forerunner
A) aggressive patriotism
B) mischievous behavior
C) extreme laziness
D) fondness for music
A) a forgotten event
B) a distant land
C) a time long past
D) belonging to you
A) put an end to
B) divide into equal portions
C) proceed with caution
D) collide with
A) a shell-like exterior
C) a distant relative
A) an act of acknowledgment
B) good dietary habits
C) a process of wearing down or weakening
D) fascination with someone or something
10. Pyrrhic victory
A) an overwhelming triumph
B) a victory that does not matter
C) a victory won at too great a cost
D) a victory by default
1: D) unnecessary. There’s too much gratuitous violence in that movie.
2: B) dull. The vapid lecture seemed to go on for days.
3: D) a forerunner. Some think a four-leaf clover is a harbinger of good fortune.
4: A) aggressive patriotism. It was an expression of jingoism, a hatred for all outside the tribe.
5: C) a time long past. In the days of yore, the internet did not exist.
6: A) put an end to. They moved to quash the indictment on which he was brought to trial.
7: B) awareness. These strange phenomena are quite out of the reach and ken of ordinary mortals.
8: C) a process of wearing down or weakening. The battle resulted in further attrition of their army.
9: D) shortage. The committee was hindered by a paucity of useful answers.
10: C) a victory won at too great a cost. It was a Pyrrhic victory—it was actually the beginning of the end.
Because of the e-newsletter’s large readership, please submit your English usage questions through GrammarBook.com’s “Grammar Blog.”
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We reviewed and strengthened every quiz on our website to ensure consistency with the rules and guidelines contained in our eleventh edition of The Blue Book of Grammar and Punctuation.
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With thanks to cartoonist Mark Stivers
Learn all about who and whom, affect and effect, subjects and verbs, adjectives and adverbs, commas, semicolons, quotation marks, and much more by just sitting back and enjoying these easy-to-follow lessons. Tell your colleagues (and boss), children, teachers, and friends. Click here to watch.