Difficult Words : Denizen, Demagogue, Depravity, Deprecate, Deride and Derogatory





Difficult Words: Denizen, Demagogue, Depravity, Deprecate, Deride and Derogatory

Demagogue (DEM uh GAWG) n: a leader of the people, but more a rabble rouser

A demagogue is a leader, but not in a good sense of the word. He manipulates the public to support his aims, but he is little different from a dictator. A demagogue is often a despot.




Depravity (di prav ii tee) n: extreme wickedness or corruption

Mrs. Prudinkle wondered whether the depravity of her class of eight-year-olds was the result of their watching Saturday morning television.




Denizen (DEN i zun) n: inhabitant

To be a denizen of a restaurant is to go there often, so often that people begin to wonder whether you live there.

Fish are sometimes referred to as denizens of the deep. Don't refer to them this way yourself. The expression is a cliché.

To exhibit depravity is to be depraved.




Deprecate (DEP ruh KAT) v: to express disapproval of

To deprecate a colleague's work is to risk making yourself unwelcome in your colleague’s office.

"This stinks!" is a deprecating remark.

The critic's deprecating comments about my new novel put me in a bad mood for an entire month.

To be self-deprecating is to make little of one's own efforts often in the hope that someone else will say. “No, you’re well!"

For another meaning of depreciate, see appreciate.




Deride (di RIDE) v: to ridicule; to laugh at contemptuously

Barry derided Barbara's driving ability after their hair-raising trip down the twisting mountain road.

Sportswriters derided Columbia's football team which hadn't won a game in many years.

The boss derided his secretary mercilessly, so she poisoned him. She was someone who could not accept derision (di RIZH un).




Derogatory (di ROG uh TOHR ee) adj: disapproving; degrading

Derogatory remarks are negative remarks expressing disapproval. They are nastier than merely critical remarks.

Oliver could never seem to think of anything nice to say about anyone. Virtually all his comments were derogatory.

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