Quiz: You'd Need A PhD To Know The Meaning Of These 22 Words

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No dictionaries allowed!

See how wide your vocabulary really is by taking this quiz and choosing the correct meaning of several challenging words.

 May 15, 2018
1 of 22What does this word mean?
Tirade
A person who pleads for another person
A speech of violent denunciation
To increase by natural growth
2 of 22What does this word mean?
Vilify
To embellish
To dispose of
To spread negative information about
3 of 22What does this word mean?
Quaint
Huge
Expensive
Attractively old-fashioned
4 of 22What does this word mean?
Parallel
Original type
Large
Side by side
5 of 22What does this word mean?
Negligent
Lack of attention or concern
Being of questionable authenticity
Showing little emotion
6 of 22What does this word mean?
Sobriety
The state of being sober
A disparaging remark
Something causing misery or death
7 of 22What does this word mean?
Maxim
A type of bird
An insult
A saying that is widely accepted
8 of 22What does this word mean?
litigant
Someone involved in litigation
A person who repairs shoes
An indirect way of expressing something
9 of 22What does this word mean?
Foil
Play boisterously
Separate or cut with a tool
Hinder or prevent
10 of 22What does this word mean?
Debacle
A feeling of deep regret
A sudden and violent collapse
A passage through which water can pass
11 of 22What does this word mean?
Construe
Make sense of
Give over to another for care
Feeling or expressing pain
12 of 22What does this word mean?
Alias
An insufficient quantity
Extreme greed for material wealth
A name that has been assumed temporarily
13 of 22What does this word mean?
Candor
Being honest and straightforward
Expose while ridiculing
Charge falsely
14 of 22What does this word mean?
Ambivalent
Extremely thin
Uncertain
No longer in force or use
15 of 22What does this word mean?
Cleave
Showing ill humor
The act of deceiving
Separate or cut with a tool
16 of 22What does this word mean?
Rife
Written in the form of letters
Abundant
Anything short-lived
17 of 22What does this word mean?
Bashful
Open to interpretation
Steadiness of mind under stress
Self-consciously timid
18 of 22What does this word mean?
Preclude
Make worse
Give expression to
Make impossible
19 of 22What does this word mean?
Complement
Something that makes amends for something else
Demanding immediate attention
Something added to embellish
20 of 22What does this word mean?
Gratuitous
Unnecessary
Still in existence
Based on incorrect reasoning
21 of 22What does this word mean?
Instigate
Infringe upon
Provoke
Credit to
22 of 22What does this word mean?
Trite
Only partly in existence
Repeated too often
Impossible to deny
WOMEN.COM | Quiz Facts

Even those who pride themselves on their English skills and believe that they know the meaning of just about all the words in the English language can struggle with knowing true definitions. Some words are so complicated that you just have no idea what they could possibly mean. Others sound too similar to a word that you do know, and you get confused between their meanings. Then there are those false friends, who sound like they pertain to one thing but they actually have nothing to do with it and mean something totally different. Basically, even English professors have trouble with certain words! The only problem is that some of these words are extremely common, and not knowing what they mean when they come up in conversation is, well, embarrassing. So how many of these notoriously tricky words do you know? Do you know what it means when someone goes on a tirade? How about what it means to vilify someone? Do you know when to really describe something as being quaint, or when a person is really being negligent and when they’re not? Do you know what sobriety means, or what a maxim actually is? How about what exactly constitutes a litigant, and when you can be classified as really foiling someone’s plans? Take this quiz to find out if you really know the difference between debacle and rife, and what it means to instigate something. Find out how much you really know about some of the hardest words in the English language now!