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ESL Vocabulary Resources - Learn to Speak English

Academic Vocabulary List

Word                  Definition, meaning

A  
adolescent
affiliate
alarm
alley
almanac
alphabet
alternative
analgesic
antique
apiece
appetite
approach
ardor
assemble
astonish
astronomy
athlete
attic
authenticity
axe
a teenager
associate as a member
a device that sound a warning
a narrow passageway or street
book of facts published annually
a set of English letters
choice, selection, option
something used to reduce pain
object prized for its age
each, individually
desire to eat
get closer
with great intensity
come together, meet
surprise, amaze
science that deals with the universe
sportsman or woman
area between the roof and ceiling of a house
reality, certainty
instrument used in chopping wood
   
B  
bake
banknote
bargain
barrel
bat
bathrobe
blackout
blade
blame
blank
blissful
boast
bounce
burglar
to cook in an oven
paper money or currency
something you can buy cheaply
a large round container used for holding great amounts of liquid
a small, furry mammal which flies at night
clothing worn after taking a shower
electric power outage
the flat, cutting edge of a knife or tool
to accuse someone or wrongdoing
empty, without any marks
extremely happy
brag; say great things about yourself
spring or leap like a ball
one who breaks into a building and steals
   
C  
cage
carve
cattle
cellophane
century
challenge
charge
chew
chime
cite
coffin
collapse
combination
compassion
compensation
concoct
condominium
confess
confront
conquer
consumer
contact
contemporary
cope
cork
coward
cracker
cream
credentials
crook
crummy
curiosity
a structure made of wires or bars for confining animals
to create a form by cutting
a general name for "cows"
a plastic wrapping
period of one hundred years
call for energetic work or action
postpone or delay payment until the bill comes
to cut and grind with the teeth
device that produces a bell-like sound
give reference to
a box in which a dead body is placed for burial
fall down
joining together of things or ideas
feeling of sympathy towards another person
payment for service, loss or expense
create by combining various ingredients
individual home within a building of similar homes
admit to wrongdoing
raise an issue directly and argumentatively
defeat, overcome
person who buys things
to get in touch with; get together to talk with
from the same time period
handle or deal with a difficult situation
material from the bark of a tree, often used for wine bottles tops
a person who is not brave
a hard, salty, cookie-like food
thick, fluffy milk based product
qualifications or background
a thief, criminal, swindler
lousy, miserable, or worthless
desire to know; inquisitive interest
   
D  
decathlon
decorative
dent
depending
deposit
desperate
dessert
detect
devout
dip
discrimination
dozen
drudgery
dull
dweller
ten track and field events
ornamental, with artistic design
weaken, lessen the value of something, usually by hitting
trusting, relying on
put money into a bank account
without hope
sweet dish served after a meal
to discover the existence of something
very religious
put lightly into water or liquid
treating people unfairly because of their differences
a set of twelve
hard, uninteresting labor
boring, not exciting; not bright or sharp
inhabitant, person who lives at a certain place
   
E  
earn
eclipse
emerald
encourage
ensure
enthusiastic
entirely
estate
evaluate
evolve
exhausted
exile
expansion
expert
eyelid
get money through working
event obscuring the sun or moon
a precious stone of bright green color
give help, support or confidence
make certain, insure
very interested or excited about something
on the whole
property, land, possessions
give feedback
develop slowly
extremely tired
forced removal from one's country
growth
a person with a high degree of knowledge or skill
a fold of skin which covers the eyeball
   
F  
fantasy
fascinating
fatal
finesse
fleet
flock
fold
former
fortune
frighten
fugitive
fur
imagination, dream world
very interesting, exciting, fun
causing death
ability to handle difficult situations well
group of ships
group of sheep
to lay or bend something over upon itself
the first of two things
good or bad luck, fate
to make someone scared or afraid
one who tries to escape, runaway
thick animal hair
   
G  
galaxy
gallery
generous
gigantic
glance
glimpse
goofy
a group of millions of stars
place where art is displayed for the public
giving unselfishly, usually large amounts
huge, large, enormous
to look quickly
a brief look; an indication
funny, silly
   
H  
hanger
harvest
hatch
havoc
heir
hemorrhage
hop
a device upon which clothing is hung
gather crops at the end of growing season
break out of an egg
a lot of trouble, chaos
one who inherits from a parent
excessive bleeding
jump a short distance, sometimes on one foot
   
I  
ignore
illusion
immigrant
incident
incredible
inferior
inform
inhabitant
inquire
inquiry
instinct
interfere
irrational
irrelevant
issue
don't pay attention
false idea, dream
person who comes into a country to live
an occurrence or even; happening
unbelievable
of lower or lesser quality
to tell, give the facts
resident
ask questions
the act or process of questioning
natural or innate ability
to get in the way; prevent someone from doing a task
impossible to explain reasonably
not related or applicable
things that need to be discussed
   
J  
jam
jogging
juvenile
sweet preserved fruit spread
running slowly
young, immature, youthful
   
K  
knot formed when two ropes are tied together
   
L  
lack
latter
leak
lecturer
legitimate
listless
log
lonely
lumber
absence, deficiency
the second of two things
a hole or crack which allows water to pass thorough
a university professor
lawful, conforming to accepted standards
lacking energy or spirit
a fallen tree trunk or bulky piece of timber
without needed companionship
wood which has been sawed into boards
   
M  
magician
maid
mathematics
melt
monopoly
motive
museum
one who performs illusions
paid housekeeper
course subject dealing with numbers and calculations
to reduce from a solid to a liquid by heat
complete commercial control
reason
institute that displays artifacts for the public
   
N  
naked
narrow
nationwide
negligent
without covering or clothing
thin, not wide
everywhere in the country
failing to give proper care or attention
   
O  
observe
octopus
opaque
ounce
outraged
outskirts
outstanding
owe
own
perceive thorough the senses, see
deep sea animal with eight legs
not transparent
unit of weight, one-sixteenth of a pound
upset, very mad
the suburbs, area around a city
distinguished, excellent
to be under obligation or indebted to someone
possess
   
P  
parlance
participation
patriotic
peak
peasant
peddler
perceive
perceive
personality
plug
pocket
poll
portion
pounding
poverty
practical
premarital
prevent
priceless
profit
proportion
province
psychiatry
punish
puppet
language, usually used by a particular group
taking part, getting involved in a group activity
having feelings of devotion towards one's country
top of the mountain
poor, simple farmer
someone who sells things
sense, notice, observe through the senses
to sense (see, hear, smell, touch)
the nature or character of a person
part of a machine connected to an electrical source
a flat pouch sewn into the clothing
survey from the general population
small part or section
beating, hitting repeatedly
condition of being poor
useful and realistic
before marriage
stop something from happening
very valuable
money people make from business
segment or section, percentage of the whole
a designated political area within a country
branch of medicine dealing with mental disorders
impose a penalty for wrongful behavior
doll or toy which can be animated by manipulation
   
Q  
qualm feeling of uneasiness, doubt or fear
   
R  
railing
rainbow
ramble
rancher
region
reinforce
relationship
release
reluctance
rendezvous
revenue
revolver
ribbon
rinse
rise
risk
roam
rough
route
a bar which is used for support when climbing stairs
an arch containing the colors of the spectrum
to talk on an on without saying much
person who owns a large farm with animals
area, location
give support to, strengthen
social connection between people
set free, allow to go out
hesitation, unwillingness to do something
meeting at a pre-arranged place
earnings, income from a business
gun, pistol
a narrow strip of cloth used for decoration
to cleanse with water after washing with soap
go up, get higher
possibility of danger or loss
wander, walk around without direction
having a bumpy surface; not smooth
path, road, way
   
S  
sample
sand
scientist
seal
severe
sheet
significantly
skill
slang
slim
soak
sober
spill
spoil
sponge
squeeze
starvation
stow
struggle
subsequent
supply
survey (noun)
survey (verb)
swallow
swell
swing
try or test food for taste
a grainy type of soil found on beaches
an expert in a field of study
an aquatic mammal prized for its fur
cruel, harsh
a large thin cloth which can be spread on a bed
in an important or meaningful way
ability, talent
informal language
skinny; thin
to immerse or drench in water or other liquid
not drunk; serious
allow something to fall or run out of a vessel or container
to make the quality of something worse
an absorbent material used for washing
to compress; press closely, usually for extracting juice
terrible hunger
put something in a small space for storage
have difficulty doing something; fight
coming after, following
materials kept in stock for future use
a questionnaire, or a report showing results of a poll
ask questions to find out people's opinions
to move food or drinks down the throat
get bigger, enlarge
to move back and forth, sway
   
T  
tap
telescope
teller
textile
therapy
thermometer
thrilling
thunder
tipping
toss
trampoline
transfer
trapper
treat
trend
trophy
to strike or hit gently
instrument for viewing distant objects
a person who works at a bank window
fabric, cloth, woven material
professional psychological counseling
an instrument used for measuring temperature
exciting
noise usually followed by a flash of lightning
giving extra money for services
throw lightly
athletic equipment used for jumping into the air
change vehicles or transportation en route to one's destination
person who catches wild animals for a living
special delight
a fad that lasts for a long time
prize given in a race or competition
   
U  
unflattering
upgrade
not in a complimentary way
improve the quality of something
   
V  
varnish
vast
vocational
volunteer
a substance painted on wood to make it glossy
huge, immense
pertaining to a specific job
person who gives service without pay
   
W  
walrus
warehouse
warrior
waste
wed
widespread
widow
wilderness
withdraw
wooden
workaholic
wrap
large seal-like mammal with tusks
large building for storage
fighter
use wrongly, use too much of
get married
covering a large area
woman whose husband has died
wild, unsettled area
take money out of the bank
made of lumber or timber products
compulsive worker
to cover with paper, cloth, or plastic
   
Y  
yawn open the mouth in an expression of sleepiness
   


Note: These are general meanings for the words. You may encounter other definitions depending on context.


Check a dictionary for other meanings.

See Academic Vocabulary Exercises for quizzes matching words and definitions.

See also:

Academic Vocabulary Lists and Matching Exercises

Words in the News
ESLgold Dictionary


ESL Videos to help you speak English

Rosetta Stone - English

Speak English as a Second Language

Learning English - Lesson One


English Greetings & Phrases

English Pronunciation

English - Introductions



                  






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