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      in`stinc`tive
      in'stiŋktiv
      adj done without thinking, because of a natural tendency or ability
      -
      Her reaction was purely instinctive.
      Dog's instinctive understanding of human society and interactions has made them such a highly valued domesticated animal.
      Many faux pas of fashion can be avoided if you curb your instinctive desire to buy things with your heart instead of your head.
      It is our instinctive reaction to punish those who has committed an offence.
      Born in 1882, Goddard was a rocket man before he was a man at all. From childhood, he had an instinctive feel for all things pyrotechnic; he was intrigued by the infernal powders that fuel firecrackers and sticks of TNT.
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      pains`ta`king
      'peinzteikiŋ
      adj needing a lot of care, effort and attention to detail
      -
      In the most painstaking process of dismantling a huge ship piece by piece, around 35,000 mostly unskilled labourers toil day and night with bare hands in the most rudimentary way, where safety measures for them are virtually non-existent.
      The difficulty in understanding foreign languages, let alone the painstaking process of learning a new one, could be about to end with the launch of a new application that will translate live speech.
      It was published in 5 volumes, between 1955-59 because of the long production times involved in the painstaking work of compiling the detailed maps.
      During her five years of painstaking research , the young Anglo-American academic found herself at times overwhelmed by the strength of a character who has been dead for nearly 200 years.
      In the last six months of writing, Foreman had no other life, working six days a week from 6 am to midnight, and when the book was finished, she suffered an extreme form of psychological deprivation.
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      bot`a`nist
      'bɔtənist
      n[C] a scientist who studies plants
      -
      Nowadays, botanists study approximately 400,000 species of living organisms of which some 260,000 species are vascular plants and about 248,000 are flowering plants.
      In the last two decades of the 20th century, botanists exploited the techniques of molecular genetic analysis, including genomics and proteomics and DNA sequences to classify plants more accurately.
      The discipline of plant ecology was pioneered in the late 19th century by botanists such as Eugenius Warming.
      Botanists examine both the internal functions and processes within plant organelles, cells, tissues, whole plants, plant populations and plant communities.
      At each of these levels, a botanist may be concerned with the classification (taxonomy), phylogeny and evolution, structure (anatomy and morphology), or function (physiology) of plant life.
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      fe`ver`ish
      'fi:vəriʃ
      adj affected by fever ¶ very excited or worried about sth
      -
      When meningococcal bacteria invade your bloodstream, they produce poisons. This makes you feel ill and feverish , and the poisons begin to attack the lining of your blood vessels, so that they leak.
      Today, 12 September, is Apple's big launch day, when months of feverish speculation about the size, weight and capabilities of the iPhone 5 will finally end in the crushing realisation that it is just another phone.
      The selection of the next Chief Minister of Karnataka, 20th to head the government since 1947, has reached a feverish pitch.
      Among those embarking on the mission were seventy Companions of the Prophet who had fought at the Battle of Badr. The inclusion of Badri Companions increased the fervor of Muslims to a feverish pitch. Even some of the Christian tribes in the border areas offered to support the Muslim army.
      On the opposing side, the Persian General Rustam was at the head of 50,000 seasoned soldiers.
      Israel has continued its settlement expansion in the occupied West Bank at a feverish pace.
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      in`fringe
      in'frindʒ
      v[IT] break a rule, law, etc ¶ limit or reduce sb's legal rights or freedom
      -
      A UK High Court judge ruled that Samsung did not infringe on the design, and the Court of Appeal later affirmed that decision.
      If they infringe on the rules they will be penalised.
      Your rights stop where you infringe upon the rights of other.
      The University of Oxford does not warrant that the material does not infringe the rights of any other person or organisation.
      Apple sued the Taiwanese phone-maker in 2010, claiming iPhone technology had been infringed.
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      re`proach
      ri'prəutʃ
      v[T] criticize sb, esp for not being successful or not doing what is expected
      also a noun
      -
      If you reproach someone, you say or show that you are disappointed, upset, or angry because they have done something wrong.
      She reproached him for being interested in Helen Avery.
      If you reproach yourself, you think with regret about something you have done wrong.
      I have nothing to reproach myself with.
      If you look at or speak to someone with reproach, you show or say that you are disappointed, upset, or angry because they have done something wrong.
      She looked back at me with her big, dark eyes, full of reproach.
      He is a person with a reputation that is beyond reproach (So good as to preclude any possibility of criticism).
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      con`nois`seur
      kanə'sə
      n[C] sb who has expert knowledge in matters of taste or the fine arts
      -
      A connoisseur is a person who has a great deal of knowledge about the fine arts, cuisines, or an expert judge in matters of taste.
      In many areas the term now has an air of pretension, and may be used in a partly ironic sense, but in the art trade connoisseurship remains a crucial skill for the identification and attribution to individual artists of works, where documentary evidence of provenance is lacking.
      The V1 is perfect for the wine connoisseur on your holiday list.
      To be looked upon as a fool by an idiot is a true connoisseur's delight.
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      lin`guis`tics
      liŋ'gwistiks
      n[U] the study of language in general
      -
      Linguistics is the scientific study of human language.
      Linguistics can be broadly broken into three categories or subfields of study: language form, language meaning, and language in context.
      The first subfield of linguistics is the study of language structure, or grammar.
      It includes the study of morphology (the formation and composition of words), syntax (the formation and composition of phrases and sentences from these words), and phonology (sound systems).
      Phonetics is a related branch of linguistics concerned with the actual properties of speech sounds and nonspeech sounds, and how they are produced and perceived.
      The study of language meaning is concerned with how languages employ logical structures and real-world references to convey, process, and assign meaning, as well as to manage and resolve ambiguity.
      This category includes the study of semantics (how meaning is inferred from words and concepts) and pragmatics (how meaning is inferred from context).
      Linguistics also looks at the broader context in which language is influenced by social, cultural, historical and political factors.
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      af`front
      ə'frʌnt
      v[T] insult or offend
      also a noun
      -
      This is not an affront to the referee and linesmen fraternity, but just an acknowledgement that mistakes do happen.
      The majority of Romanians, however, still refer to Vlad as "Tepes" ("The Impaler"), the name first bestowed on Vlad by Turkish chroniclers, and view the "Dracula" connection as an affront to their history.
      As the cognomen "The Impaler" suggests, his practice of impaling his enemies is part of his historical reputation.
      During his lifetime, his reputation for excessive cruelty spread abroad, to Germany and elsewhere in Europe.
      The name of the vampire Count Dracula in Bram Stoker's 1897 novel Dracula was inspired by Vlad's patronymic and reputation.
      Dickens was sentimental about children - Little Dorrit, Oliver Twist, David Copperfield etc - and was affronted by the suffering endured by the most vulnerable.
      He was quite affronted at the suggestion that he stole the device.
      Compare affront and confront.
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      ex`pec`tant
      ik'spektənt
      adj thinking that sth pleasant or exciting is going to happen
      -
      Be expectant, but keep your expectations realistic for yourself and others.
      I know it can be scary up there, staring at a sea of expectant faces.
      An expectant mother or father will soon be a parent of a new baby.
      I breast fed both of my children and do encourage expectant and new mothers to go that route for too many reasons to relate.
      Hospitals and birthing centres offer tours of their facilities for expectant parents, and although you might find this the most boring event of the pregnancy, you should definitely familiarize yourself with the environment you and your partner will in for hours, and maybe even days if her labour is lengthy or complicated.
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      a`vi`a`tor
      'eivieitə
      n[C] pilot
      -
      An aircraft pilot or aviator is a person who actively and directly operates the directional flight controls of an aircraft while it is in flight.
      While other members of a flight crew such as flight engineer, navigator, or any other person involved in the direct flight operations of an aircraft are also considered "aviators", they are not pilots and do not command a flight or aircraft.
      Aircrew who are not involved in operating the aircraft's flight systems (such as cabin attendants and mechanics) as well as ground crew are not generally classified as aviators.
      In recognition of the pilots' qualifications and responsibilities, most militaries and many airlines worldwide award aviator badges to their pilots, as well as other air crews.
      Amelia Mary Earhart was an American aviation pioneer and author. Earhart was the first female aviator to fly solo across the Atlantic Ocean.
      Night at the Museum: Battle of the Smithsonian (also known as Night at the Museum 2 or Night at the Museum 2: Battle of the Smithsonian) is a 2009 American adventure comedy film.
      The Aviator is a 2004 American biographical drama film about Howard Hughes.
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      o`ver`cast
      əuvə'ka:st
      adj dark with clouds
      -
      The sky was overcast and a light rain began to fall.
      The sky was overcast; she stood by the window and looked out at a grey cat walking along a grey fence in a grey backyard.
      Excess energy is stored in batteries to keep it afloat even on overcast days.
      Don't be deceived by a cloudy or overcast day. As much as 80 percent of the sun's harmful rays can still get through.
      Overcast skies and afternoon showers could not deter thousands of visitors from the final day of the festival yesterday.
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      li`bel
      'laibəl
      v[T] write things about sb that are not true
      also a noun
      -
      I was slandered and libeled by the right as a "tool" of the Democratic Party.
      And recently, a Tamil man was libeled by two British newspapers, the Daily mail and Rupert Murdoch's the Sun.
      In the statement of claim, Schmeiser says Monsanto has libeled him by publicly accusing him of committing illegal acts, trespassing on his land in order to obtain seed samples and improperly obtaining samples of his seed from a local seed plant.
      Blood libel (also blood accusation) is an accusation that Jews kidnapped and murdered the children of Christians to use their blood as part of their religious rituals during Jewish holidays.
      Historically, these claims—alongside those of well poisoning and host desecration—have been a major theme in European persecution of Jews.
      The Rhodes blood libel was an 1840 event of blood libel against Jews, in which the Greek Orthodox community accused Jews on the island of Rhodes (then part of the Ottoman Empire) of the ritual murder of a Christian boy who disappeared in February of that year.
      Initially the libel garnered support from the consuls of several European countries, including the United Kingdom, France, the Austrian Empire, Sweden, and Greece, although later several supported the Jewish community.
      The Ottoman governor of Rhodes broke with the long tradition of the Ottoman governments (which had previously denied the factual basis of the blood libel accusations) and supported the ritual murder charge.
      The government arrested several Jewish subjects, some of whom were tortured and confessed. It blockaded the entire Jewish quarter for twelve days.
      The Jewish community of Rhodes appealed for help from the Jewish community in Constantinople, who forwarded the appeal to European governments.
      In the United Kingdom and Austria, Jewish communities gained support from their governments.
      They sent official dispatches to the ambassadors in Constantinople unequivocally condemning the blood libel.
      A consensus developed that the charge was false.
      The governor of Rhodes sent the case to the central government, which initiated a formal inquiry into the affair.
      In July 1840, that investigation established the innocence of the Jewish community.
      Finally, in November of the same year, the Ottoman sultan issued a decree denouncing the blood libel as false.
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      fra`ter`nal
      frə'tə:nl
      adj of or relating to brothers ¶ showing a special friendliness to other people because you share interests or ideas with them
      -
      A fraternity or fraternal organization is an organized society of men associated together in an environment of companionship and brotherhood; dedicated to the intellectual, physical, and social development of its members.
      The Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) is a fraternal organization consisting of sworn law enforcement officers in the United States.
      Article 252 of the Constitution provided as follows: " The State shall endeavour to consolidate, preserve and strengthen fraternal relations among Muslim countries based on Islamic solidarity.
      Dizygotic (DZ) or fraternal twins (also referred to as "non-identical twins", "dissimilar twins", "biovular twins", and, informally in the case of females, "sororal twins") usually occur when two fertilized eggs are implanted in the uterus wall at the same time.
      Monozygotic (MZ) or identical twins occur when a single egg is fertilized to form one zygote (hence, "monozygotic") which then divides into two separate embryos.
      A sibling is a brother or sister.
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      sky`ward
      'skaiwəd
      adv up into the sky or towards the sky
      -
      After the countdown, the space shuttle explosively launched itself skyward and ultimately reached speeds of 25,000 miles per hours while in orbit.
      Billions of tons of lava oozed out, and carbon dioxide floated skyward.
      Winston Churchill's V-sign started as two fingers pointing skyward with palms facing in, but when he discovered the gesture was offensive to the working class, Churchill changed the gesture to palms facing out.
      The Legend of Zelda: Skyward Sword is an action-adventure game for the Wii video game console.
      Compare skyscraper, skylark, and skyward.
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      hi`a`tus
      hai'eitəs
      n[C] a break or interruption in an activity
      -
      During a hiatus from the group, Gwen launched a successful solo career and started a family with her husband Gavin Rossdale.
      After a six-year hiatus in human space flight, NASA debuted the space shuttle Columbia with a radical new idea: a reusable spaceship that would take off like a conventional rocket and land like a glider.
      Since the 1967 Six-Day War, after a hiatus of 19 years, the Open Bridges policy practised by Israel and Jordan has made it possible for people from all over the Arab world to visit Israel, as well as facilitating personal and commercial links between the Palestinian Arab populations on both sides of the Jordan River.
      New loans are ticking up after a hiatus in 2010 and 2011.
      After a three and half year hiatus, Pete has come back with a jaw dropping debut single 'Always a winner' and it's a real shift from his earlier style of music.
      The event, in its 18th year, has had a couple of hiatuses.
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      news`cast`er
      'nju:zka:stə
      n[C] sb who presents news during a news program on television, on the radio or on the Internet
      -
      A news presenter – also known as a newsreader, newscaster (short for "news broadcaster"), anchorman or anchorwoman, news anchor or simply an anchor – is a person who presents news during a news program on television, on the radio or on the Internet.
      They may also be a working journalist, assisting in the collection of news material and may, in addition, provide commentary during the programme.
      News presenters most often work from a television studio or radio studio, but may also present the news from remote locations in the field related to a particular major news event.
      Luo Jing (May 29, 1961 – June 5, 2009) was a prominent news anchor for China Central Television (CCTV), the main state broadcaster of the People's Republic of China.
      He was known all over China as an announcer for the 7:00 pm CCTV News program Xinwen Lianbo.
      As one of China's most well-known TV personalities, Luo's voice was very distinctive amongst Chinese news announcers.
      During his career he was known for his professionalism and "impeccable etiquette".
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      me`thod`i`cal
      mə'θɔdikl
      adj arranged or proceeding in regular, systematic order
      -
      They solve problems in a methodical and rational way, supported by hard evidence.
      A careful and methodical approach is always recommended.
      We respect the serious and methodical way in which Germany is tackling them.
      They approached the task of producing excellent Agiorgitiko wines in a very methodical manner.
      It's a slow, methodical process.
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      ex`act`ing
      ig'zæktiŋ
      adj needing a lot of skill and care, demanding
      -
      Hitchcock, an exacting man when it came to preparation, agreed to cut Hull some slack.
      CaseView is a complex report writing tool that will require an investment in the learning curve. However, once this application is mastered, you will be able to format financial reports to your exacting standards.
      If a change of venue is not granted, it will be very difficult to find enough jurors with open minds to assure that what Barack Obama promised - "the most exacting demands of justice" - can actually be delivered.
      Only 40 girls a year master the oh-so exacting demands of organic cookery, quilt-making and, yes, handling millionaire bosses.
      As a practicing trial attorney, dealing with the exacting requirements of legal writing over the years enabled me to hone my writing ability to the point where I became an effective writer.
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      no`mad`ic
      nəu'mædik
      adj moving from place to place rather than staying in one place
      -
      Nomadic hunting and gathering, following seasonally available wild plants and game, is by far the oldest human subsistence method.
      Sometimes also described as "nomadic" are the various itinerant populations who move about in densely populated areas living not on natural resources, but by offering services (craft or trade) to the resident population.
      Most nomadic groups follow a fixed annual or seasonal pattern of movements and settlements.
      Nomadic peoples traditionally travel by animal or canoe or on foot.
      Nomadic foragers move in search of game, edible plants, and water.
      Nomadic craftworkers and merchants travel to find and serve customers.
      The Mongols originally consisted of loosely organized nomadic tribes in Mongolia, Manchuria, and Siberia.
      The nomadic way of life has become increasingly rare.
      Many countries have converted pastures into cropland and forced nomadic peoples into permanent settlements.
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      de`com`po`si`tion
      di:kɔmpə'ziʃən
      n[U] the process by which organic substances are broken down into a much simpler form of matter
      -
      Although no two organisms decompose in the same way, they all undergo the same sequential stages of decomposition.
      The science which studies decomposition is generally referred to as taphonomy from the Greek word τάφος taphos, meaning tomb.
      One can differentiate abiotic from biotic decomposition (biodegradation).
      The former means "degradation of a substance by chemical or physical processes, e.g. hydrolysis.
      The latter one means "the metabolic breakdown of materials into simpler components by living organisms", typically by microorganisms.
      The decomposition of food, either plant or animal, called spoilage in this context, is an important field of study within food science.
      Food decomposition can be slowed down by conservation.
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      fal`la`cy
      'fæləsi
      n[C] a false idea that many people believe is true, misconception ¶ the use of poor, or invalid, reasoning for the construction of an argument
      -
      It is a common fallacy that oil and gas leaks are entirely man-made.
      I think it is a fallacy to think that 4 x 3GHz = 12GHz, granted the maths works, but you're comparing apples to oranges and the sums just aren't right, GHz can't simply be added together for every situation.
      "Penny, if you promise not to chew the flesh off our bones while we sleep, you can stay." "What?" "He's engaging in reductio ad absurdum. It's the logical fallacy of extending someone's argument to ridiculous proportions and then criticizing the result."
      When arguing with someone in an attempt to get at an answer or an explanation, you may come across a person who makes logical fallacies.
      An arguer who uses ad hominems (Latin for "to the man") attacks the person instead of the argument.
      The phrase pathetic fallacy is a literary term for the attributing of human emotion and conduct to all aspects within nature. It is a kind of personification that is found in poetic writing when, for example, clouds seem sullen, when leaves dance, when dogs laugh, or when rocks seem indifferent.
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      o`be`di`ent
      əu'bi:diənt
      adj doing what a person, law, or rule says you must do
      -
      There can be no doubt that Mary was a good woman and obedient to God.
      She won't look at us much, and is shaky and nervous sometimes, even though she remains perfectly obedient.
      Even though your dog is obedient, it is required under ordinance that you keep your dog on a leash.
      She's pushy and he's whipped (extremely obedient to one's girlfriend. Also pussy-whipped).
      The soldiers stood at attention disciplined, and obedient.
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      short`hand
      'ʃɔ:thænd
      n[U] a system of fast writing ¶ a shorter way of saying or referring to sth
      -
      Shorthand is an abbreviated symbolic writing method that increases speed and brevity of writing as compared to a normal method of writing a language.
      The process of writing in shorthand is called stenography, from the Greek stenos (narrow) and graphē or graphie (writing).
      It has also been called brachygraphy, from Greek brachys (short) and tachygraphy, from Greek tachys (swift, speedy), depending on whether compression or speed of writing is the goal.
      Many forms of shorthand exist. A typical shorthand system provides symbols or abbreviations for words and common phrases, which can allow someone well-trained in the system to write as quickly as people speak.
      Tombstone of Heinrich Roller, inventor of a German shorthand system, with a sample of his shorthand
      If you write something down in longhand, you write it by hand using complete words and normal letters rather than typing it or using shortened forms or special symbols.
      Just because you use "75%" as a shorthand for "I'm pretty sure" doesn't mean you are thinking probabilistically.
      Use 192.168.1.128/25 instead of a specific IP address. That is shorthand for 192.168.1.128 with a netmask of 255.255.255.128.
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      re`source`ful
      ri'zɔ:sfəl
      adj good at finding effective ways to deal with problems
      -
      She's a very resourceful manager.
      Jackals are known for being highly adaptable and resourceful.
      Arab Americans had an average IQ of 110-115, I'm sure they would be resourceful enough to steer U.S. foreign policy in a pro-Arab/anti-Israel direction.
      Dad's solutions were resourceful and creative, he'd developed those skills through years of farming, and growing up during the war when everything was scarce.
      This is a man who is incredibly resourceful and resilient. I just had a hard time believing that he would quit like that.
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