1. ORIGINS Wordlist

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término English
definición English

given name
Given name: Given/First: Joahann | Middle: Sebastian | Family/Last: Bach
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first name (American English)
My given name is Nicholas.

maiden name
'This is terribly embarrassing -- I've been married so many times, I've forgotten my maiden name.'
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a woman’s family name before she got married and started using her husband’s family name
I’m Mrs Mary Smith, but my maiden name is Mary Black.

name after
We named him after my father. | John? | No. Dad.
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give someone or something the same name as another person or thing
He was named after his father.

live up to your name
My name means "hope" in Spanish and it's a name I want to live up to.
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if someone lives up to their name, they do as well as they were expected to because of what their name or title is
The boss has certainly lived up to his name.

make a name for yourself
A man has three names: the name he inherits, the name his parents give him and the name he makes for himself.
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to become famous for something
He made a name for himself as a conductor of the Berlin Orchestra.

household name
what household name means. A brand name that is well known to the great majority of households... A very well-known public figure...
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someone who is famous
Barack Obama is a household name.

put your name forward
Volunteer Now
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to suggest formally that you should be considered for a particular job, membership of an organisation etc
He put his name forward as a candidate for governor.

clear your name
That feeling when ... you clear your name.
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to prove that you are not guilty of something
They fought for years to clear his name.

by name
He counts the stars and calls them all by name.
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using a person’s name
He was mentioned by name in the report of the accident.

in name only
Wife in name only.
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if a situation exists in name only, it does not really exist even though officially people say it does
That country is a democracy in name only.

surname
a name shared by all the members of a family
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the name that you share with your parents, or often with your husband if you are a married woman, and which in English comes at the end of your full name
The actor Michael Caine’s real surname is Micklewhite.

middle name
Hello. My name is: Middle.
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the name that is between your first name and your family name
Harry Potter’s middle name is James.

married name
Hello. My name is Married!
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a woman’s last name, when she has changed it to her husband’s name
She gave them Brenda’s married name and address.

perceptive
the ‘perceptive’ person is one who can read the non-verbal sentences and accurately match them against the person's verbal sentences.
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someone who is perceptive notices things quickly and understands situations, people’s feelings etc well – used to show approval
You’re right. That’s very perceptive of you.

inspirational
People who inspire us.
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providing encouragement or new ideas for what you should do
Jones proved an inspirational figure in Welsh rugby.

over-ambitious
'He's bitten off more than he can chew!' to try to do too much or something that is too hard for you
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Excessively ambitious. Determined to be successful, rich, powerful etc:
The over-ambitious health reform programme failed.

conscientious
Thorough, careful, or vigilant; implies a desire to do a task well...
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careful to do everything that it is your job or duty to do
A conscientious teacher may feel inclined to take work home

obstinate
not willing to be reasonable and change your plans, ideas, or behaviour. I now see that my obstinate refusal caused problems for everyone.
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determined not to change your ideas, behaviour, opinions etc, even when other people think you are being unreasonable
He was the most obstinate man I’ve ever met.

neurotic
My anxieties have anxieties.
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unreasonably anxious or afraid
He seemed a neurotic, self-obsessed man.

open-minded
New ideas
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willing to consider and accept other people’s ideas and opinions
She’s quite open-minded about what job she wants to do.

prejudiced
Yellow snow is also snow. I thought diversity was supposed to be a good thing...
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having an unreasonable dislike of someone or something, especially a dislike of a group of people who belong to a different race, sex, or religion – used to show disapproval
Some officers were racially prejudiced.

apathetic
Homeless person with a sign saying 'I need help' and a businessman with a sign saying 'I don't care!'
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not interested in something, and not willing to make any effort to change or improve things
She felt too apathetic even to move.

insensitive
I wish I could fly like a bird. WAAAA! Insensitive bastard!!!
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not noticing, or not taking the care to notice, other people’s feelings, and not realizing when they are upset or when something that you do will upset them
She’s totally insensitive to Jack’s feelings.

solitary
If one is lucky, a solitary fantasy can totally transform one million realities.
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spending a lot of time alone, usually because you like being alone
Pandas are solitary creatures.

rebellious
Some rebels are more rebellious than others.
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deliberately not obeying people in authority or rules of behaviour
He’s always had a rebellious streak (a tendency to rebel).

mature
Maturity is not measured by age. It's an attitude built by experience.
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sensible – someone, especially a child or young person, who is mature behaves in a sensible and reasonable way, as you would expect an adult to behave
We’re mature enough to disagree on this issue but still respect each other.

inquisitive
An inquisitive person is one whose brain is always buzzing, buzzing with loads and loads of questions.
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interested in a lot of different things and wanting to find out more about them
He’s a very inquisitive little boy.

considerate
putting other's needs before my own.
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always thinking of what other people need or want and being careful not to upset them
He was always kind and considerate.

circumspect
"If either of you is a Taurus, you must be circumspect in your financial dealings today."
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thinking carefully about something before doing it, in order to avoid risk
The governor was usually circumspect when dealing with the media.

conservative
The measure of intelligence is the ability to change. Conservative: not liking or accepting changes or new ideas.
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not liking changes or new ideas
He has a very conservative attitude to education.

temperamental
a temperamental woman holding computer wires and a mouse
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likely to suddenly become upset, excited, or angry – used to show disapproval
Preston is particularly good at handling temperamental people.

impetuous
Not sparring today? -Advanced practice. Pam, a bit beyond a girl like you who's ... kind of impetuous...
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tending to do things very quickly, without thinking carefully first, or showing this quality
He was high-spirited and impetuous.

easy-going
My new year resolution for 2018 is the same as last year’s and the year before: to be more easygoing.
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not easily upset, annoyed, or worried
Her easy-going nature made her popular.

gregarious
Grizzly bears are gregarious animals. And then the other guy said: Jack, that's a mighty big grizzly! Are you sure the rifle is loaded? |
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friendly and preferring to be with other people
He’s a very gregarious person.

selfish
I love me, myself and I.
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caring only about yourself and not about other people – used to show disapproval
How can you be so selfish?

liberal
Be somebody who makes everybody feel like a somebody.
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willing to understand and respect other people’s ideas, opinions, and feelings
I had quite liberal parents.

introverted
Prefers inner world. | Ideas. Wants to understand. | He's got the whole world in his head...| Learning style: think, think, think, DO, think
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someone who is introverted is quiet and shy and does not enjoy being with other people
Jenny is quite introverted and doesn’t enjoy parties.

yes-man
Would you please send in one of my yes-man to break this tie?
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someone who always agrees with and obeys their employer, leader etc in order to gain some advantage – used to show disapproval
You can’t expect Jim to disagree with the boss – he’s a complete yes-man.

whizzkid
You see, Mum, I've modified your FM-radio to be powered straight from the electric fence...
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a young person who is very skilled or successful at something
He’s a financial whizzkid in the City.

someone who is too interested in other people’s private activities – used to show disapproval
Mrs Jackson is a busybody.

chatterbox
My sister is a real chatterbox.
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someone, especially a child, who talks too much
Young John is a real chatterbox.

pain in the neck
Someone or something that is very annoying. My little sister is a pain in the neck - she never leaves me alone!
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someone who is very annoying
Joshua is a pain in the neck.

dark horse
A person whose abilities, plans, or feelings are little known to others. It's difficult to predict who will win the prize, there are two or three dark horses in the tournament.
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someone who does not tell people much about themselves, but who has surprising qualities or abilities
She’s a dark horse. I didn’t know she’d written a novel.

old hand
Be an old hand at something. Be good at something because you have done it for a long time. Miss Florence can take over your class, she's an old hand at teaching.
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someone who has a lot of experience of something
He’s an old hand at the job.

set in her ways
Set also means reluctant to change. My mother is pretty set in her ways. Although I know they are set in their ways, I'll try my best to convince them.
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having particular habits
Marc was 65 and very set in his ways.

black sheep
I just realized that I'm not the black sheep of the family. I come from a family of black sheep and I am theIr SCAPE GOAT.
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someone who is regarded by other members of their family or group as a failure or embarrassment
Amy’s always been the black sheep of the family.

life and soul of the party
If you refer to someone as the life and soul of the party, you mean that they are very lively and entertaining on social occasions, and are good at mixing with people.
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someone who enjoys social occasions and is fun and exciting to be with
We must ask Sylvia to come – she’s the life and soul of the party.

rotten apple
A bad person. Yeah, I spiled the bunch. But just once I'd like to get credit for creating a really useful metaphor.
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one person who has a bad effect on all others in a group
Oliver was the rotten apple – people started arguing when he arrived.

loose cannon
Someone who can be unpredictable; someone who speaks or acts recklessly.
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a person who cannot be controlled and who does or says things that cause problems, embarrassment, etc., for others
Don’t send John to the meeting because he’s a bit of a loose cannon.

origin of "loose cannon"
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A loose cannon was a cannon that had become free of its restraints and was rolling dangerously about the deck.

couch potato
Hey uhhh Fred, all you been doing is sitting around all day! Aren't you getting tired of this sedimentary lifestyle?
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someone who spends a lot of time sitting and watching television
He’s a bit of a couch potato.

wet blanket
Wet blanket: a negative person who spoils other people's fun. We were all having a good time untill Jack walked and started acting like a wet blanket.
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someone who seems to want to spoil other people’s fun, for example by refusing to join them in something enjoyable that they are doing
Don’t ask Sarah, she’s such a wet blanket.

big cheese
I'm the big cheese. Just call me Boss.
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an important and powerful person in an organisation – used humorously
He’s the big cheese in this business.

tough cookie
Yes, you're a tough cookie. But we have ways of making you talk. (Chew him out to make him crumble. Then milk him for every last drop of information)
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someone who is very determined to do what they want and not what other people want
Ask Alice to help, she’s a tough cookie.

capture the beauty of something
Your outer beauty will capture the eyes. Your inner beauty will capture the heart.
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to succeed in recording, showing, or describing the beauty in a situation or feeling, using words or pictures
These photographs capture the beauty of the countryside at the turn of the century.

evocative
That picture is wonderfully evocative of a hot, summer’s day.
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making people remember something by producing a feeling or memory in them

iconic
Have you seen that iconic picture of Che Guevara?
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admired by many people and thought to represent an important idea

revealing
Let us be grateful to the mirror for revealing to us our appearance only.
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something that is revealing shows you something interesting or surprising about a situation or someone’s character
The programme gave a revealing insight into her life.

striking
Striking: Attractive; impressive: a scene of striking beauty. Noticeable; sensational: a striking amount of detail.
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attractive in an unusual way that is easy to notice
A dark man with striking features walked up to me.

provocative
Provocative statement: something to make you think (and hopefully act) differently.
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provocative behaviour, remarks etc are intended to make people angry or upset, or to cause a lot of discussion
The minister’s provocative remarks were widely reported in the press.


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