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Staying    Vocabulary Lists

You must know the italicized, bold roots and their definitions each week.



Dissolute - Describes someone who behaves immorally or lives a loose life. The word comes from the Latin prefix dis (“away, apart”) and the verb solvere as in “loosen”. The Roman Empire may have declined because of its numerous dissolute despots, of which the most infamous was Nero.


Despot - Despot, a cruel ruler, originally meant “master of the house”, from Greek despotes. This word is a contraction of dems, “house or tribe” + potere, “to be able”. From the Greek dems, we also get the word democracy; yet a despot has no interest in sharing power with anyone else.


Vocabulary                  Definitions

1.       dissolute                  immoral

2.       despot                     tyrant

3.       dilemma                   problem, choice of two alternatives

4.       dissipated                wasted

5.       discord                    conflict

6.       devious                   deceitful, untrustworthy

7.       demeaned                degraded

8.       deign                       condescend, lower oneself

9.       denigrate                 belittle, defame

10.       disclaim                   disown

11.    dire                         disastrous

12.    despicable                hateful

13.    debased                    lowered (in quality, value, condition)

14.    disputatious            argumentative

15.    dilettante                dabbler (in the arts)

16.    demise                    death

17.    drudgery                 hard work


(17 words)

Rothstein, Evelyn. Staying at the Top. Nyack, NY: ERA/CCR Corp, 1986.