Ten Words from The New York Times - June 5, 2013

Activities for this list:

definitions & notes only words
  1. stalemate
    a situation in which no progress can be made
    Eager to break a painful near- stalemate that has settled over the war since late last summer, they opened a front here on the arid flatlands east of the Aleppo-Damascus highway.
  2. deplete
    use up, as resources or materials
    In this way, they might deplete the ammunition and other supplies of army outposts in Idlib and Hama — sources of much of the shelling of civilian neighborhoods — so that the outposts could be defeated piecemeal.
  3. tactical
    pertaining to detailed maneuvers to achieve objectives
    After the Syrian Army was deployed into the cities in 2011, these villages assumed a tactical significance.
  4. garrison
    station in a fort
    A formerly quiet patch of not especially fertile farmland was now a buffer that insulated Hama, where the army is thickly garrisoned, and the eastern side of the Aleppo-Damascus highway, one of the military’s logistical lifelines.
  5. emblematic
    serving as a visible symbol for something abstract
    When Steve Bolyard checked out a report of black paint on some of the park’s majestic saguaros — cactuses whose towering bodies and upraised arms are as emblematic of the American West as red-rock buttes and skittering tumbleweeds — he did not expect to see ganglike calligraphy covering more of them than he could easily count.
  6. unnerving
    inspiring fear
    It was the latest example of a trend that has been unnerving park officials from Rocky Mountain National Park in Colorado to Arches in Utah and Joshua Tree in California.
  7. restitution
    a sum of money paid in compensation for loss or injury
    Mr. Ganey pleaded guilty to a felony and is paying restitution of $10,100 in monthly installments of $105.
  8. apocalyptic
    prophetic of devastation or ultimate doom
    Followers and friends called Mr. Campbell hilarious, profound, inspiring and apocalyptic, a guitar-picking, down-home country boy who made moonshine and stomped around his Tennessee cabin in cowboy boots and denim uttering streams of sacred and profane commentary that found their way into books, articles, lectures and sermons.
  9. indelible
    cannot be removed or erased
    “Brother Will, as he was called by so many of us who knew him, made his own indelible mark as a minister and social activist in service to marginalized people of every race, creed and calling,” former President Jimmy Carter said.
  10. luminary
    a celebrity who is an inspiration to others
    As a race-relations troubleshooter for the National Council of Churches from 1956 to 1963, he joined the Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., the Rev. Ralph Abernathy, James Farmer, Bayard Rustin, John Lewis and other civil rights luminaries in historic confrontations across the South.

Sign up, it's free!

Whether you're a student, an educator, or a lifelong learner, Vocabulary.com can put you on the path to systematic vocabulary improvement.