In this new topic, I'm going to provide much information about some common words and their different synonyms and variations and I do hope this will help you increase your Vocabulary and use the English language productively.
******************************* 1/ Good and very good
Instead of saying that something is good or very good, try to use more precise and interesting adjectives to describe things:
* Delicious/ tasty food.
*an exciting/ entertaining/absorbing movie
*a pleasant/ an enjoyable trip
* an absorbing/ a fascinating/ an informative book.
* a skilful/ talented/ fine player.
In conversation you can also use words like: great, super, wonderful, lovely and excellent.
******************************* 2/ Nice and very nice:
Instead of saying that something is nice or very nice, you can use more precise and interesting adjectives to describe things:
* pleasant/perfect/beautiful weather
* a cosy/ a comfortable/ an attractive room.
*a pleasant/ an interesting/ an enjoyable experience.
* expensive/ fashionable/ smart clothes.
*a kind/ a charming/ an interesting man.
* the party was fine
In conversation you can also use great, wonderful, lovely and (in British English) brilliant.
******************************* 3/ Bad and very bad:
Instead of saying that something is bad or very bad, try to use more precise nad interesting adjectives to describe things:
*an unpleasant/ a foul/ a disguisting smell.
* appalling/ dreadful/ severe weather.
*an unpleasant/ a frightening/ a traumatic experience.
*a terrible/ serious/horrific accident.
*a wicked/ an evil/ an immoral person
* an awkward/ an embarrassing/ a difficult situation.
* difficult/ appalling conditions
* to refer to your health, you can say:
I feel unwell/ sick/ terrible; I don’t feel (very) well.
In conversation, words like terrible, horrible, awful and dreadful can be used in most situations to mean ‘very bad’.
4/ Words that mean ‘break’:
Burst : The balloon hit a tree and burst. Crack : The ice started to crack. Crumble : Crumble the cheese into a bowl. Cut : He cut the wire in two. Fracture : He fell and fractured his hip. Shatter : The vase hit the floor and shattered. Smash : Vandals had smashed two windows Snap : I snapped the pencil in half. Split : The bag had split open on the way home. Tear : She tore the letter into pieces.
NB.All the above verbs except cut can be used with or without an object.
***************************** 5/ To cry:
To cry is the most general word for producing tears when you are unhappy or hurt, or when you are extremely happy.
To sob means to cry noisily, taking sudden, sharp breaths.
To wail means to cry in a loud high voice .
To whimper means to cry making low, weak noises.
To weep means to cry quietly for a long time.
To be in tears means to be crying.
To burst into tears means to suddenly begin to cry.
To cry your eyes out means to cry a lot or for a long time, because you are very sad.
*********************************** 6/ Expressions on your face:.
To beam is to have a big happy smile on your face.
To frown is to make a serious, angry or worried expression by bringing your eyebrows closer together so that lines appear on your forehead.
To glare or glower is to look in an angry, aggressive way.
To grimace is to make an ugly expression with your face to show pain, disgust, etc.
To scowl is to look at someone in an angry or annoyed way.
To smirk is to smile in a silly or unpleasant way that shows that you are pleased with yourself, know something that other people do not know, etc.
To sneer is to show that you have no respect for someone by turning your upper lips upwards.
These words can also be used as nouns. For instance: she looked up with a puzzled frown – He gave me an icy glare – a grimace of pain…
****************************** 7/ Using your hands:
These verbs describe different ways of touching things:
Feel : I felt the bag to see what was in it. Finger : She fingered the silk delicately. Handle : Hnadle the fruit with care. Rub : She rubbed her eyes wearily. Stroke : The cat loves being stroked. Pat : He patted my arm and told me not to worry. Tap : Someone was tapping lightly on the door. Squeeze : I took his hand and squeezed it.
You can use these verbs to describe taking something quickly.
Grab : I grabbed his arm to stop myself from falling. Snatch :She snatched the letter out of my hand.
These verbs describe holding things tightly:
Clasp : Her hands were clasped behind her head. Clutch :The child was clutching a doll in her hand. Grasp : Grasp the rope with both hands and pull. Grip : He gripped his bag tightly.
8/ Different ways of laughing:
Cackle : to laugh quietly, especially because you are thinking about something funny.
Giggle :to laugh in a silly way because you are amused, embarrassed or nervous.
Guffaw :to laugh noisily
Roar :to laugh very loudly
Snigger/snicker :to laugh in a quiet unpleasant way, especially at something rude or at someone’s problems or mistakes.
Titter : to laugh quietly, especially in a nervous or embarrassed way.
You can also be convulsed with laughter or dissolve into laughter when you find something very funny. In British English people also shriek with laughter or howl with laughter.
If you want to talk about a small amount or one example of something that is normally an uncountable noun, there is a range of words you can use. You must choose the right one to go with the substance you are talking about.
Piece and (British informal) bit are very general words and can be used with most uncountable nouns: a piece of paper/ wood/ string / cake / fruit / meat / work / research / advice * a bit of paper / work / chocolate / luck .
A slice is a thin flat piece : a slice of bread / cake / salami / cheese / pie / apple * (figurative) a slice of life.
A chunk is a thick, solid piece : a chunk of cheese/bread/rock * a chunck of land (= a fairly large piece)
A lump is of something solid without any particular shape : a lump of coal / rock / mud.
A fragment is a very small piece of something that is broken or damaged : fragments of glass * (figurative) fragments of conversation . It can also be used with countable nouns to mean a small part of something: A fragment of the story.
A speck is a tiny piece of powder : a speck of dust / dirt. You can also say : a speck of light.
A pinch is as much as you can hold between your finger and thumb : a pinch of salt / cinnamon.
A portion is enough for one person : a portion of chicken.
* The rich aroma of fresh coffee. * A herb with a delicate fragrance. * A rose’s sweet perfume. * The scent of wild flowers.
* Nasty household odours. * The stench of rotting meat. * The stink of stale sweat. * The reek of beer and tobacco.
12/ Teach and teacher
* Teach : John teaches French at the local school – she taught me how to change a tyre.
* Educate : Our priority is to educate people about the dangers of drugs.
* Instruct : Members of staff should be instructed in the use of fire equipments.
* Train : She’s a trained midwife - He’s training the British Olympic swimming team.
* Coach : He’s the best football player I ever coached – She coaches some of the local children in math ( British English)
*Tutor : She tutors some of the local children in math ( American English
* Teacher :school / college teachers.
* Instructor : a swimming / science instructor.
* Trainer : a horse trainer – Do you have a personal trainer
* Coach : a football coach.
* Tutor : tutors working with migrant children.
13/ Saying that somebody is thin
Thin is the most usual word : Steve is tall and thin and has brown hair. It is sometimes used with a negative meaning Mother looked thin and tired after her long illness.
The following words all express praise or admiration
Slim means pleasantly thin. It often used to describe women who have controlled their weight by diet or exercise She has a beautifully slim figure.
A slender girl or woman is thin and graceful.
A lean man is thin and fit.
Willowy describes a woman who is attractively tall and thin.
The following words are more negative in their meaning
Skinny means very thin, often in a way that is not attractive : a skinny little kid.
Bony describes parts of the body when they are so thin that the bones can be seen: the old man’s bony hands.
Scrawny suggests that a person is thin, weak and not attractive: a scrawny old woman.
Gauntdescribes a person who is a little too thin and looks sad or ill. Underweight is used in medical contexts to describe people who are too thin because they are ill or have not had enough food: women who smoke risks giving birth to underweight babies.
Emaciated describes a serious condition resulting from illness or lack of food.
Anorexic is a medical term, but is now also used informally to describe a girl or woman who is so thin that you are worried about them.
It is more acceptable to talk to somebody about how thin or slim they are than how fat they are.
14/ Ways of walking
* Creep: He could hear someone creeping downstairs.
* Limp: One player limped off the field with a twisted ankle.
*Pace: I found him in the corridor nervously pacing up and down.
*Pad: She spent the morning padding about the house in her slippers.
*Plod: They wearily plodded home through the rain.
*Shuffle: The queue gradually shuffled forward.
*Stagger: They staggered out of the pub, completely drunk.
*Stomp: She stomped out of the room, slamming the door behind her.
*Stroll: Families were strolling around the park.
*Tiptoe: They tiptoed upstairs so they wouldn’t wake the baby.
*Trudge: We trudged up the hill.
15/ Types of weather
*Drizzle is fine light rain.
* A shower is a short period of rain.
* A downpour or a cloudburst is a heavy fall of rain that often starts suddenly.
*When it is raining very hard you can say that it is pouring. In formal British English, you can say it is bucketing down or chucking it down. You can also say: The heavens opened.
* A cyclone and a typhoon are types of violent tropical storms with very strong winds.
* A hurricane has very strong winds and is usually at sea.
* A monsoon is a period of very heavy rain in particular countries, or the wind that brings this rain.
* A squall is a sudden strong, violent wind, usually in a rain or snow storm.
* A tornado(or twister ‘informal’) has very strong winds which move in a circle, often with a long narrow cloud.
* A whirlwind moves very fast in a spinning movement and causes a lot of damage.
* A blizzard is a snow storm with very strong winds.
* Tempest is used mainly in literary terms to describe a violent storm.
16/ A bar of chocolate
If you want to describe a whole unit of a particular substance, or a group of things that are normally together, for example when you buy them, you need to use the correct word.
* A bar of soap/ choclate; a candy bar.
* A block of ice / stone / wood.
* A bolt / roll / length of fabric.
* A loaf of bread.
* A cube of ice/ sugar; an ice/ sugar cube.
* A roll of film / carpet.
* A slab of marble / concrete.
* A stick of gum
* A bunch of bananas / grapes.
* A bunch / bouquet of flowers.
* A bundle of papers/ sticks.
* A set/ bunch of keys .
* A set of chairs / glasses / clothes
17/ Actions expressing emotions
Often parts the body are closely linked to paticular verbs. The combination of the verb and part of the body expresses an emotion or attitude. These are few examples:
If you click your fingers, you’re trying to remember something.
If you click your tongue, you’re annoyed.
If you drum / tap your fingers, you’re impatient.
If you hang your head, you’re ashamed.
If you lick your lips, you’re anticipating something good or you’re nervous.
If you nod your head, you’re agreeing.
If you bite your lips, you’re nervous
If you clench your fist, you’re angry or aggressive.
If you purse your lips, you’re disapproving.
If you raise your eyebrows, you’re inquiring or surprised.
If you scratch your head, you’re puzzled.
If you shake your head, you’re disagreeing.
If you shrug your shoulders, you’re doubtful or indifferent.
If you stamp your feet, you’re angry.
If you wrinkle your nose, you’re feeling dislike or distate.