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      cas`u`al
      'kæʒuəl
      adj relaxed or seeming not caring ¶ informal ¶ temporary ¶ ≠serious ¶ not planned ¶ occasional
      -
      Although close to tears, she tried to make her voice sound casual.
      Relaxed and dressed in his usual casual clothes, Putin leapt out of the front seat of his bullet-proof SUV as it pulled up.
      The interview took place around the kitchen table and was very casual.
      Phoebe has occasional casual work but mostly she is unemployed.
      Joey just wanted casual sex.
      He made some casual remark.
      I want to be a casual smoker, not a pack per day anymore.
      Even casual readers of the business pages will be aware of Greenspan's influence.
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      fore`cast
      'fɔ:rkæst
      v[T] make a statement about what is likely to happen, predict
      also a noun
      -
      The weather forecast is for a dry sunny day tomorrow.
      The forecast said there would be sunny intervals and showers.
      The government has issued a pessimistic economic forecast.
      They forecast a large drop in unemployment over the next two years.
      Gold prices are forecast to increase by less than 20% this year.
      The interest rate is in line with the forecast.
      Economic forecasters think that the stock market is set to (likely to) fall.
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      ac`cel`e`rate
      ək'seləreit
      v[I] move faster
      v[IT] happens faster or make sth do this
      -
      Ten seconds after the first shots had been fired the president's car accelerated off at high speed towards Parkland Memorial Hospital.
      This fighter jet has just accelerated past the speed of sound.
      Iran has accelerated production of uranium in excess of what it would need for merely peaceful purposes.
      The rise in temporary workers has accelerated since the 1990s as employers try to cut labor costs.
      The hacked software has caused an accelerated battery drain that shortens the operation of a cell phone.
      I could have accelerated and been done with my traditional education by the time I was 13 or 14, and moved on to college perhaps completing that by the time I was 18.
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      plunge
      plʌndʒ
      v[IT] move, fall, or be thrown suddenly forwards/downwards ¶ slope downward suddenly ¶ suddenly decreases by a large amount
      n[C] a quick fall
      -
      Bonnie ran down to the beach and plunged into the sea.
      From the moment his car plunged off the bridge to his brain death was less than two seconds.
      If you plunge an object into something, you push it quickly or violently into it.
      Mike Scofield plunged the knife into his leg.
      If a person or thing is plunged into a particular state or situation, or if they plunge into it, they are suddenly in that state or situation.
      The country was plunged into civil war after the death of the President.
      If you plunge into an activity or are plunged into it, you suddenly get very involved in it.
      "I don't agree," she said, plunging into the conversation.
      Stone steps plunged down to the basement.
      This year profits plunged by 40%.
      We are expecting a plunge in profits this year.
      If a ship plunges, it moves violently up and down because of big waves.
      If you take the plunge, you decide to do something that you consider difficult or risky.
      Phoebe and Mike have finally decided to take the plunge and get married.
      If you notice that your toilet isn't draining properly and is quickly filling with water, you'll need to turn the water off before you can plunge the toilet and remove the clog.
      Tribbiani! Hold on, I'll get the plunger.
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      func`tion`al
      'fʌŋkʃənəl
      adj practical and useful; with little or no decoration ¶ having a special purpose ¶ working, able to work, operational
      -
      The MI-6 office is a barren warehouse of a place, purely functional and ugly as hell, not pretty, hi-tech or exciting.
      A functional beverage is a drink product that is non-alcoholic and includes in its formulation ingredients such as herbs, vitamins, minerals, amino acids or additional raw fruit or vegetables.
      Functional beverage sector is a subsector of the functional food and non-alcoholic beverage industry and it is the fastest growing sector.
      In some particular functional drinks, particularly energy drinks, the caffeine content can be high, ranging from 0 to 141.1 milligrams per serving, of which an average 8-ounce cup of coffee contains about 133 mg of caffeine.
      A functional disorder is a medical condition that impairs the normal function of a bodily process, but where every part of the body looks completely normal under examination, dissection or even under a microscope.
      The PhotoCenter has an eclectic collection of photographic items, including cameras, lenses, filters, bags, tripods, straps, and other accessories. Plenty of fully functional electronics and computer stuff, printers, scanners.
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      pro`duc`tive
      prə'dʌktiv
      adj producing or able to produce, esp in large quantities ¶ achieving a lot, fruitful
      -
      Some work hard, but their efforts are not very productive.
      But it doesn't wind up being very productive.
      So, what behaviors define highly productive people? What habits and strategies make them consistently more productive than others?
      Productive land is scarce, because mountain ranges cover most of the country's area.
      Well, I see you've had a very productive day.
      Was it allocating capital to its most productive uses?
      China said this week new sanctions may be counter-productive.
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      grav`i`ty
      'græviti
      n[U] force that attracts objects in space towards each other ¶ the force that makes sth fall to the ground ¶ importance, seriousness
      -
      Gravitation, or gravity, is a natural phenomenon by which all physical bodies attract each other.
      The gravity of Earth, denoted g, refers to the acceleration (measured in meters per second squared) that the Earth imparts to objects on or near its surface.
      The concept of "center of mass" in the form of the "center of gravity" was first introduced by the ancient Greek physicist, mathematician, and engineer Archimedes of Syracuse.
      Gravity is a 2013 British 3D science fiction thriller and space drama film.
      The penalties should be proportionate to the gravity of the offence.
      For an offence of this gravity, imprisonment is the usual punishment.
      In my opinion the book treats this serious and sad issue situation with due gravity.
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      lil`y
      'lili
      n[C] a large flower in the shape of a bell that is often white
      -
      Lilies are a group of flowering plants which are important in culture and literature in much of the world.
      Many other plants have "lily" in their common name but are not related to true lilies.
      Lily of the Valley is a sweetly scented (and highly poisonous) woodland flowering plant that is native throughout the cool temperate Northern Hemisphere in Asia, Europe and in the southern Appalachian Mountains in the United States.
      The phrase "water lily" is used to describe aquatic plants which have lily pads.
      Water Lilies is a famous painting series by Claude Monet.
      Tiger Lily is an Indian princess that was captured by Captain Hook. Peter Pan freed her.
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      ra`cis`m
      'reisizəm
      n[U] the unfair treatment of people who belong to a different race ¶ violent behavior towards them ¶ the belief that different races of people have different characters and abilities, and that your own race is the best
      -
      Racism is actions, practices or beliefs, or social or political systems that consider different races to be ranked as inherently superior or inferior to each other, based on presumed shared inheritable traits, abilities, or qualities.
      In history, racism was a driving force behind the transatlantic slave trade, and behind states based on racial segregation such as the U.S. in the nineteenth and early twentieth centuries and South Africa under apartheid.
      Practices and ideologies of racism are universally condemned by the United Nations in the Declaration of Human Rights.
      Anti-racism includes beliefs, actions, movements, and policies adopted or developed to oppose racism.
      Movements such as the African-American Civil Rights Movement and the Anti-Apartheid Movement were examples of anti-racist movements.
      Hate crime laws, affirmative action, and bans on racist speech are also examples of government policy designed to suppress racism.
      UNESCO (United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization) marks March 21 as the yearly International Day for the Elimination of Racial Discrimination, in memory of the events that occurred on March 21, 1960 in Sharpeville, South Africa, where police killed student demonstrators peacefully protesting against the apartheid regime.
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      ar`tic`u`late
      a:'tikjuleit
      adj able to express one's ideas clearly in words ¶ clear and easy to understand
      v[IT] speak sth clearly ¶ form a joint or connect sth by joints with sth
      -
      She's unusually articulate for a ten-year-old.
      Thank you for your reasoned and highly articulate comment.
      It gives an articulate description of the drug's effect.
      Phoebe (speaking louder and articulating) That's she's like the daughter she never had. (points at her ears.) Listen!
      When you enunciate a word or part of a word, you pronounce it clearly.
      An articulated vehicle is a vehicle which has a permanent or semi-permanent pivoting joint in its construction, allowing the vehicle to turn more sharply.
      There are many kinds of articulated vehicles, from heavy equipment to buses, trams and trains.
      In a broader sense, any vehicle towing a trailer could be described as articulated.
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      barn
      ba:n
      n[C] a large farm building for storing crops,or for keeping animals in ¶ a large plain ugly building
      -
      My character's Catholic and he falls in love with this Jewish girl. We've run away together to get caught in this big rainstorm. So we go into this barn and undress each other and hold each other.
      She walked to the door of the barn where the last of the sunlight danced on her shoulders.
      "Maybe I can make up it to you by taking you roughly in the barn," said Joey.
      A barn dance is any kind of dance involving traditional or folk music with traditional dancing, occasionally held in a barn, but, these days, much more likely to be in any suitable building.
      The 60-acre yard was completed in 1976 and began operations in 1977. The facility also houses a bus barn and maintenance facilities for subway cars.
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      shrimp
      ʃrimp
      n[C] a small shellfish with a lot of legs, prawn
      -
      Anyway, like I was saying, shrimp is the fruit of the sea. You can barbecue it, boil it, broil it, bake it, sauté it.
      There's pineapple shrimp, lemon shrimp, coconut shrimp, pepper shrimp, shrimp soup, shrimp stew, shrimp salad, shrimp and potatoes, shrimp burger, shrimp sandwich.
      Prawn cocktail, also known as shrimp cocktail, is a seafood dish consisting of "shelled prawns in mayonnaise and tomato dressing, served in a glass".
      Shrimp toast or prawn toast is a Chinese dim sum dish. It is made from small triangles of bread, brushed with egg and coated with minced shrimp and water chestnuts, then cooked by baking or deep frying. Dim sum refers to a style of Cantonese food prepared as small bite-sized or individual portions of food traditionally served in small steamer baskets or on small plates.
      Rock shrimp have a hard, spiny shell more like a lobster rather than its shrimp cousins.
      The chef is cooking and tossing shrimp in the air.
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      soar
      sɔ:
      v[I] fly high in the sky ¶ rise quickly into the air ¶ increase quickly to a high level ≠ plummet
      -
      An eagle soared over the battlefield.
      Armstrong pressed the engine's firing button and Eagle soared perfectly above the lunar surface towards the waiting Collins.
      Federal expenditures for K-12 education have soared from $12.5 billion in 1965 to $72.8 billion in 2008, measured in constant 2008 dollars.
      House prices had soared a further twenty per cent.
      If your spirits or hopes soar, you begin to feel very happy or hopeful.
      If buildings, trees, towers etc soar, they look very tall and impressive.
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      con`fess
      kən'fes
      v[IT] formally say/admit ¶ admit sth that you feel embarrassed about, acknowledgex ¶ tell a priest about the bad things you have done
      -
      Torture was used and she confessed to being a spy for the KGB.
      After three hours of interrogation, she confessed everything.
      At a public hearing on higher education, a Texas legislator confessed that she began saving for her two daughters' college education at their births, but lamented that it was "still not enough."
      Rachel confessed to Ross that she had sold the gift.
      Chandler confessed to having slept through most of the film.
      A perfect act of contrition even outside of confession removes the eternal punishment associated with mortal sin but a Catholic is obliged to confess his or her mortal sins at the earliest opportunity.
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      dash
      dæʃ
      v[I] go/run somewhere very quickly
      v[IT] throw/push sth violently against sth else
      n[C] sudden forward movement ¶ short race ¶ small amount of sth
      -
      Rachel dashed into the room, grabbed her bag, and ran out again.
      "Oh, Phoebe!" I'm sorry but I have to dash. I said I'd meet Melissa at eleven.
      She dashed off before she had a chance to say good night.
      Phoebe seized the doll and dashed it against the wall.
      Waves dashed against the cliffs.
      Hopkins' hopes were dashed when his appeal was denied.
      Monica said lunch was ready and there was a mad dash for the table.
      The 100 metres, or 100-metre dash, is a sprint race in track and field competitions.
      "Sugar with your coffee, Rachel?" "Yes please - just a dash."
      Add a dash of romance to your life with a trip to Rome.
      There are three types of dashes or lines used in writing.
      The hyphen and en dash are relatively the same size and are located to the right of the zero on most standard U.S. keyboard layouts.
      The en dash is wider than the hyphen but not as wide as the em dash.
      The em dash is a longer dash, about the length of two en dashes.
      The hyphen is used to combine two compound words together or to connect non-continuing numbers such as telephone numbers.
      The en dash is used to connect continuing numbers, dates, times, etc.
      The em dash is used to show a sudden break in thought that disrupts the sentence structure.
      A dash (dashboard) is a board or panel below the windscreen of a motor vehicle, carrying various instruments and controls.
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      press`ing
      'presiŋ
      adj urgent
      -
      But the pressing question is, is this the end?
      The most pressing issue, without a doubt, is excessive governmental regulation.
      Access to clean, fresh water is a pressing problem around the world.
      The safety of the hostages is a matter of pressing concern.
      It was believed that resource discovery is the most pressing need.
      Meanwhile, there are more pressing problems to deal with on earth, such as global warming and producing sustainable energy.
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      in`ter`act
      intər'ækt
      v[I] communicate ¶ affect each other
      -
      He didn't interacts well with other children in the class.
      He never interact with the people in his dorm.
      If a vampire interacts regularly with humans, eventually the humans will notice that the vampire isn't aging.
      Others are able to interact socially and break through some of the physical and psychological barriers they face.
      This hormone interacts closely with other hormones in the body.
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      nu`tri`tion
      nju:'triʃən
      n[U] the substances that you take into your body as food ¶ the science of food and its effect on health and growth
      -
      Nutrition and exercise are essential to fitness and health.
      My approach is to breastfeed, good nutrition and delay vaccines until school age.
      Lack of exercise and poor nutrition are major factors in the growing obesity problem in this country.
      Many children at the school were found to be suffering from inadequate nutrition.
      If someone is suffering from malnutrition, they are physically weak and extremely thin because they have not eaten enough food.
      Chemical sweeteners have no nutritional value.
      She's a professor of nutrition at Harvard University.
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      breeze
      bri:z
      n[C] a light wind
      v[I] walk somewhere in a calm confident way
      -
      The flags fluttered gently in the breeze.
      Helen let the gentle breeze cool her face.
      The front door is open to let the breeze blow.
      My dissertation defense was mostly a breeze (very easy).
      Carol just breezed in as if she'd not betrayed her husband.
      Rachel breezed through life, never worrying about anything.
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      tide
      taid
      n[CU] the rise and fall of the sea that happens twice every day ¶ water caused by ~ ¶ direction in which opinion, events, luck, etc seem to move, trend, tendency
      -
      Tides are the rise and fall of sea levels caused by the combined effects of the gravitational forces exerted by the Moon and the Sun and the rotation of the Earth.
      Some shorelines experience two almost equal high tides and two low tides each day.
      The times and amplitude of the tides at a locale are influenced by the alignment of the Sun and Moon, by the pattern of tides in the deep ocean, by the amphidromic systems of the oceans, and by the shape of the coastline and near-shore bathymetry.
      A spring tide is an unusually high tide that happens at the time of a new moon or a full moon.
      Is the tide going out or coming in?
      The tide was going out, and the sand was smooth and glittering.
      We went for a walk and got cut off by the tide.
      Swimmers should beware of strong tides.
      The body was washed up by the tide the next day.
      He hasn't the courage to swim against the political tide.
      It takes courage to speak out against the tide of public opinion.
      The tide of public opinion seems to be turning at last.
      But from the end of the Second World War, the tide of history was running out fast in South Asia and taking the British with it. India and Pakistan became independent in August 1947 and Burmese independence had been promised for January 1948.
      Today, the tide of history is flowing in the opposite direction.
      The police are fighting against a rising tide of crime.
      If you do something for someone to tide them over, you help them through a period when they are having difficulties, especially by lending them money.
      Could you lend me $100 to tide me over till next week?
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      dough
      dəu
      n[CU] flour mixed with water and often yeast ¶ money
      -
      The process of making and shaping dough is a precursor to making a wide variety of foodstuffs, particularly breads and bread-based items, but also including biscuits, cakes, cookies, dumplings, flatbreads, noodles, pasta, pastry, pizza, piecrusts, and similar items.
      Doughs are made from a wide variety of flours, commonly wheat but also flours made from maize, rice, rye, legumes, and other cereals and crops used around the world.
      Doughs vary widely depending on ingredients, the kind of product being produced, the type of leavening agent (particularly whether the dough is based on yeast or not), how the dough is mixed (whether quickly mixed or kneaded and left to rise), and cooking or baking technique.
      Knead the dough lightly and then shape it into a round loaf.
      I don't want to work but I need the dough.
      The churro is a Spanish doughnut, a fried-dough pastry.
      "Don't worry. I'll avoid the nether yayeh," said Amy. "I might've gone with eating raw cookie dough," said Bernadette.
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      short`age
      'ʃɔ:tidʒ
      n[UC] a lack of sth that people want/sneed
      -
      Is your city experiencing a housing shortage as well?
      Over 50% of world population now faces chronic shortage of fresh water for daily needs.
      There is also an acute shortage of suitable accommodation as also other shortcomings in the social support network for international students in many of the large cities in Australia and especially in Melbourne.
      There was a severe shortage of the vaccine and the city was nearly in panic.
      The recent heavy rains have helped to ease the water shortage.
      Japanese economy continued to suffer shortages in raw materials.
      So if there's a shortage of doctors, then of course, if you can pick and choose your customers, you're going to take the patients who will give you more revenue.
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      late`ly
      'leitli
      adv recently
      -
      Why haven't I seen you lately?
      I haven't been feeling so well lately.
      It's only lately that I've been well enough to go out.
      I'd like to start with a song that's about a man that I lately met.
      Man, I've been moving around so much lately, I'm beginning to feel like a nomad.
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      thigh
      θai
      n[C] the top part of your leg, between your knee and your hip ¶ the upper part of the leg of a bird
      -
      Nina sympathetically reaches out to fondle the inner thigh of Chandler's left leg.
      Monica kicked Ross in the thigh.
      Come on, Phoebe, look at that! They are not breaking up, look at them. Look at that, she just put her hand on his thigh.
      Oh my goodness, she had the smoothest skin! I mean when I stuck that dollar bill in her G-string and grazed her thigh...
      I purchased a package of chicken thighs. On the package, the best before date is 7 days from the day I bought it.
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      re`luc`tant
      ri'lʌktənt
      adj slow and unwilling
      -
      The kids were having such a good time they were reluctant to leave the park.
      Monica was curiously reluctant to talk about the experience.
      The economy is still limping, job losses are still rising, and consumers are still reluctant to open their wallets.
      He is not at all reluctant to involve the US in war with a third Islamic country, Iran.
      The classic example is the person dragging their more reluctant friends onto the dance floor, where they start to have a good time once they get going.
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