words with extra power
8. ominous. Threatening, or seeming to promise evil or harm. Our
teacher’s ominous suggestion that we should get a good night’s sleep
before our next test scared us into studying harder.
9. pompous. Puffed up with vanity and pretending to be grand
and elegant. The political candidate lost the race because of his huge
promises and pompous speeches that voters felt were insincere.
10. sadistic. Finding pleasure in being cruel. Billy, our class bully, was
feared because of his sadistic delight in making fun of weaker boys.
11. sardonic. Ironically humorous; sarcastically mocking. Homer
Simpson is a sardonic husband, making fun of his wife and kids all the
12. sophisticated. Worldly wise, educated, and experienced. A stu-
dent with a sophisticated vocabulary is assured easier essay writing as
well as higher grades.
PRACTICE 1: IDENTIFYING POWERFUL ADJECTIVES
Fill in each blank with the adjective from this lesson that ﬁts the description.
The ﬁrst letter of each correct answer has been provided.
1. John always seems to speak easily and know
what he is talking about.
2. The band forgot to tune their instruments,
and the result was a horrible kind of noise.
3. Sally was determined to improve the rights
of women, and believed in this set of beliefs. f _________________
4. Billy was known for his cruelty and was often
accused of enjoying insulting others.
5. Jeremy was always trying too hard to please
the people he wanted for friends.