One of the most fun words to learn about are adjectives. Through adjectives you can describe anything and anyone around you. Not only do adjectives make your sentences more interesting, but they also help your readers and listeners create a mental image of what you’re trying to describe.
So let’s widen your vocabulary with these adjectives from A to Z!
Audacious generally means a willingness to take bold risks. You can say, “Not studying for an exam is an audacious move.” The word can also mean showing an impudent lack of respect, as in “an audacious retort.”
Boorish refers to being rough and bad-mannered. A person lacking in refinement may be called a boorish oaf.
Cloisters are covered walks in a convent, thus being cloistered refers to being enclosed. Cloistered can also mean being kept away from the outside world. You can say, “She has lived a cloistered life up until she got married.”
Draconian often refers to laws that are excessively strict and harsh. The word is derived from Draco, an Athenian law scribe who prescribed heavy punishments for small offenses.
This formal adjective refers to successfully being able to produce the intended effect. You can say, “The treatment has proven to be efficacious for her disease.”
When you do something flagrant, you’re doing something that’s obviously offensive and immoral. You can say, “His flagrant desires had no place in her home.”
Guttural is an adjective often used to describe the quality of one’s voice. It means that the voice is harsh, throaty, or husky.
Highfalutin is used to describe writing, speech, or ideas that are pompous or pretentious. You can say, “Her highfalutin report contained many words and little substance.”
Insidious refers to something that’s proceeding in a gradual, subtle way, but with harmful effects. If something is insidious, it means it’s sneaky and crafty, but effective in how it harms something. You can say, “His insidious ways have caused a rift in the family.”
Being jaded means being tired, bored, or lacking enthusiasm. It usually occurs when you’ve had too much of something.
An object or situation that is kaput is broken and useless.
A loutish person is uncouth and aggressive.
Though both a noun and a verb, a miscreant person is someone who behaves badly and breaks laws.
Much like a nebula, anything nebulous is considered vague or unclear. Abstract concepts can be considered nebulous, as in “the nebulous nature of his attraction.”
As with the word “obey,” obeisant refers to the movement of the body expressing deep respect and courtesy. You may say, “the courtiers were obeisant in their gestures towards the new queen.”
A picayune was a Spanish coin worth only half a real, which means it has very little value. Today, anything picayune is considered too small to be worth anything.
A quixotic person is someone who’s extremely idealistic to the point of being unrealistic and impractical. This word hails from a Don Quixote, the titular character of a novel by Miguel Cervantes. Don Quixote is obsessed with doing noble and romantic deeds, but his valiant deeds were only delusions.
Recondite is a word used to describe subjects or topics that people know very little about. For instance, a book about the different spoons used by Medieval soldiers in France might be considered recondite.
A saturnine person is one who is slow and gloomy. Likewise, a saturnine place, even, or concept is also moody and mysterious.
When something is tawdry, it’s considered showy but of cheap or poor quality. A person wearing tawdry clothing might be wearing something flashy and eye-catching, but upon closer inspection you know that it’s made of cheap stuff.
Anything ubiquitous is something that one can find anywhere. For instance, cows are as ubiquitous in the countryside as loiterers are in big cities.
Speaking of the countryside, anything related to how green and lush it is would be considered verdant. It comes from the Latin word virdis, from which the Spanish, Portuguese, Italian, and Romanian term for “green” originated.
Whimsical means playfully quaint or fanciful in an amusing way. It’s often used to describe the nature of creatures of fancy like fairies, elves, and leprechauns.
When a person is xenophobic, they are extremely prejudiced against people from other countries.
A yokelish person is one who has the characteristics of a yokel. A yokel is an uneducated and unsophisticated person from the countryside – much like a country bumpkin.
Much like the zest of a lemon, food that’s described as zesty is one that has an agreeably pungent taste.
Which of these adjectives have you never encountered before? We hope you’ve discovered lots of new ones to widen your vocabulary!