Glossary of P-R-2

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pittance n
Any small portion or meager allowance
placate v
To bring from a state of angry or hostile feeling to one of patience or friendliness
placid adj
plagiarism n
The stealing of passages from the writings of another and publishing them as one's own
planisphere n
A polar projection of the heavens on a chart
plasticity n
The property of some substances through which the form of the mass can readily be
platitude n
A written or spoken statement that is flat, dull, or commonplace
plaudit n
An expression of applause
plausible adj
Seeming likely to be true, though open to doubt
playful adj
playwright n
A maker of plays for the stage
plea n
An argument to obtain some desired action
pleasant adj
pleasurable adj
Affording gratification
plebeian adj
pledgee n
The person to whom anything is pledged
pledgeor n
One who gives a pledge
plenary adj
plenipotentiary n
A person fully empowered to transact any business
plenitude n
plenteous adj
plumb n
A weight suspended by a line to test the verticality of something
plummet n
A piece of lead for making soundings, adjusting walls to the vertical
pluperfect adj
Expressing past time or action prior to some other past time or action
plural adj
Containing or consisting of more than one
plurality n
A majority
plutocracy n
A wealthy class in a political community who control the government by means of their money
pneumatic adj
Pertaining to or consisting of air or gas
poesy n
poetaster n
An inferior poet
poetic adj
Pertaining to poetry
poetics n
The rules and principles of poetry
poignancy n
Severity or acuteness, especially of pain or grief
poignant adj
Severely painful or acute to the spirit
poise n
polar adj
Pertaining to the poles of a sphere, especially of the earth
polemics n
The art of controversy or disputation
pollen n
The fine dust-like grains or powder formed within the anther of a flowering plant
pollute v
To contaminate
polyarchy n
Government by several or many persons of what- ever class
polycracy n
The rule of many
polygamy n
the fact or condition of having more than one wife or husband at once
polyglot adj
Speaking several tongues
polygon n
A figure having many angles
polyhedron n
A solid bounded by plane faces, especially by more than four
polysyllable adj
Having several syllables, especially more than three syllables
polytechnic adj
Pertaining to, embracing, or practicing many arts
polytheism n
The doctrine or belief that there are more gods than one
pommel v
To beat with something thick or bulky
pomposity n
The quality of being marked by an assumed stateliness and impressiveness of manner
pompous adj
Marked by an assumed stateliness and impressiveness of manner
ponder v
To meditate or reflect upon
ponderous adj
Unusually weighty or forcible
pontiff n
The Pope
populace n
The common people
populous adj
Containing many inhabitants, especially in proportion to the territory
portend v
To indicate as being about to happen, especially by previous signs
portent n
Anything that indicates what is to happen
portfolio n
A portable case for holding writing-materials, drawings, etc
posit v
To present in an orderly manner
position n
The manner in which a thing is placed
positive adj
Free from doubt or hesitation
posse n
A force of men
possess v
To own
possession n
The having, holding, or detention of property in one's power or command
possessive adj
Pertaining to the having, holding, or detention of property in one's power or command
possessor n
One who owns, enjoys, or controls anything, as property
possible adj
Being not beyond the reach of power natural, moral, or supernatural
postdate v
To make the date of any writing later than the real date
posterior n
The hinder part
postgraduate adj
Pertaining to studies that are pursued after receiving a degree
postscript n
Something added to a letter after the writer's signature
potency n
potent adj
Physically powerful
potentate n
One possessed of great power or sway
potential n
Anything that may be possible
potion n
A dose of liquid medicine
powerless adj
practicable adj
prate v
To talk about vainly or foolishly
prattle v
To utter in simple or childish talk
preamble n
A statement introductory to and explanatory of what follows
precarious adj
precaution n
A provision made in advance for some possible emergency or danger
precede v
To happen first
precedence n
Priority in place, time, or rank
precedent n
An instance that may serve as a guide or basis for a rule
precedential adj
Of the nature of an instance that may serve as a guide or basis for a rule
precession n
The act of going forward
precipice n
A high and very steep or approximately vertical cliff
precipitant adj
Moving onward quickly and heedlessly
precipitate v
To force forward prematurely
precise adj
precision n
Accuracy of limitation, definition, or adjustment
preclude v
To prevent
precocious adj
Having the mental faculties prematurely developed
precursor n
A forerunner or herald
predatory adj
Prone to pillaging
predecessor n
An incumbent of a given office previous to another
predicament n
A difficult, trying situation or plight
predicate v
To state as belonging to something
predict v
To foretell
prediction n
A prophecy
predominance n
Ascendancy or preponderance
predominant adj
Superior in power, influence, effectiveness, number, or degree
predominate v
To be chief in importance, quantity, or degree
preeminence n
Special eminence
preempt v
To secure the right of preference in the purchase of public land
preemption n
The right or act of purchasing before others
preengage v
To preoccupy
preestablish v
To settle or arrange beforehand
preexist v
To exist at a period or in a state earlier than something else
preexistence n
Existence antecedent to something
preface n
A brief explanation or address to the reader, at the beginning of a book
prefatory adj
Pertaining to a brief explanation to the reader at the beginning of a book
prefer v
To hold in higher estimation
preferable adj
More desirable than others
preference n
An object of favor or choice
preferential adj
Possessing, giving, or constituting preference or priority
preferment n
prefix v
To attach at the beginning
prehensible adj
Capable of being grasped
prehensile adj
Adapted for grasping or holding
prehension n
The act of laying hold of or grasping
prejudice n
A judgment or opinion formed without due examination of the facts
prelacy n
A system of church government
prelate n
One of a higher order of clergy having direct authority over other clergy
prelude n
An introductory or opening performance
premature adj
Coming too soon
premier adj
First in rank or position
premise n
A judgment as a conclusion
premonition n
preoccupation n
The state of having the mind, attention, or inclination preoccupied
preoccupy v
To fill the mind of a person to the exclusion of other subjects
preordain v
To foreordain
preparation n
An act or proceeding designed to bring about some event
preparatory adj
Having to do with what is preliminary
preponderant adj
preponderate v
To exceed in influence or power
prepossession n
A preconceived liking
preposterous adj
Utterly ridiculous or absurd
prerogative adj
Having superior rank or precedence
presage v
To foretell
prescience n
Knowledge of events before they take place
prescient adj
prescript adj
Prescribed as a rule or model
prescriptible adj
Derived from authoritative direction
prescription n
An authoritative direction
presentient adj
Perceiving or feeling beforehand
presentiment n
presentment n
preservation n
presumption n
That which may be logically assumed to be true until disproved
presumptuous adj
Assuming too much
pretension n
A bold or presumptuous assertion
pretentious adj
Marked by pretense, conceit, or display
preternatural adj
pretext n
A fictitious reason or motive
prevalence n
prevalent adj
Of wide extent or frequent occurrence
prevaricate v
To use ambiguous or evasive language for the purpose of deceiving or diverting attention
prevention n
prickle v
To puncture slightly with fine, sharp points
priggish adj
prim adj
Stiffly proper
prima adj
primer n
An elementary reading-book for children
primeval adj
Belonging to the first ages
primitive adj
Pertaining to the beginning or early times
principal adj
Most important
principality n
The territory of a reigning prince
principle n
A general truth or proposition
priory n
A monastic house
pristine adj
privateer n
A vessel owned and officered by private persons, but carrying on maritime war
privilege n
A right or immunity not enjoyed by all, or that may be enjoyed only under special
privity n
Knowledge shared with another or others regarding a private matter
privy adj
Participating with another or others in the knowledge of a secret transaction
probate adj
Relating to making proof, as of a will
probation n
Any proceeding designed to ascertain or test character, qualification, or the like
probe v
To search through and through
probity n
Virtue or integrity tested and confirmed
procedure n
A manner or method of acting
proceed v
To renew motion or action, as after rest or interruption
proclamation n
Any announcement made in a public manner
procrastinate v
To put off till tomorrow or till a future time
procrastination n
proctor n
An agent acting for another
prodigal n
One wasteful or extravagant, especially in the use of money or property
prodigious adj
prodigy n
A person or thing of very remarkable gifts or qualities
productive adj
Yielding in abundance
profession n
Any calling or occupation involving special mental or other special disciplines
professor n
A public teacher of the highest grade in a university or college
proffer v
To offer to another for acceptance
proficiency n
An advanced state of acquirement, as in some knowledge, art, or science
proficient adj
Possessing ample and ready knowledge or of skill in any art, science, or industry
profile n
An outline or contour
profiteer n
One who profits
profligacy n
Shameless viciousness
profligate adj
Abandoned to vice
profuse adj
Produced or displayed in overabundance
progeny n
progression n
A moving forward or proceeding in course
prohibition n
A decree or an order forbidding something
prohibitionist n
One who favors the prohibition by law of the manufacture and sale of alcoholic
prohibitory adj
Involving or equivalent to prohibition, especially of the sale of alcoholic beverages
projection n
A prominence
proletarian n
A person of the lowest or poorest class
prolific adj
Producing offspring or fruit
prolix adj
prologue n
A prefatory statement or explanation to a poem, discourse, or performance
prolong v
To extend in time or duration
promenade v
To walk for amusement or exercise
prominence n
The quality of being noticeable or distinguished
prominent adj
Conspicuous in position, character, or importance
promiscuous adj
Brought together without order, distinction, or design (for sex)
promissory adj
Expressing an engagement to pay
promontory n
A high point of land extending outward from the coastline into the sea
promoter n
A furtherer, forwarder, or encourager
promulgate v
To proclaim
propaganda n
Any institution or systematic scheme for propagating a doctrine or system
propagate v
To spread abroad or from person to person
propel v
To drive or urge forward
propellant adj
propeller n
One who or that which propels
prophecy n
Any prediction or foretelling
prophesy v
To predict or foretell, especially under divine inspiration and guidance
propitious adj
Kindly disposed
proportionate adj
Being in proportion
propriety n
Accordance with recognized usage, custom, or principles
propulsion n
A driving onward or forward
prosaic adj
proscenium n
That part of the stage between the curtain and the orchestra
proscribe v
To reject, as a teaching or a practice, with condemnation or denunciation
proscription n
Any act of condemnation and rejection from favor and privilege
proselyte n
One who has been won over from one religious belief to another
prosody n
The science of poetical forms
prospector n
One who makes exploration, search, or examination, especially for minerals
prospectus n
A paper or pamphlet containing information of a proposed undertaking
prostrate adj
Lying prone, or with the head to the ground
protagonist n
A leader in any enterprise or contest
protection n
Preservation from harm, danger, annoyance, or any other evil
protective adj
protector n
A defender
protege n
One specially cared for and favored by another usually older person
Protestant n
A Christian who denies the authority of the Pope and holds the right of special judgment

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