Difficult Words : Eminent, Emigrate, Empirical, Emulate, Encroach and Endemic

Difficult Words: Eminent, Emigrate, Empirical, Emulate, Encroach and Endemic

Emigrate (EM uh GRATE) v: to move to a new country; to move to a new place to live; to expatriate.

At the heart of this word is the word migrate, which means to move from one place or country to another. Emigrate adds the sense of moving out of some place in particular. Pierre emigrated from France because he had grown tired of speaking French. Pierre because an émigré.

The Soviet dissidents were persecuted by the secret police, so they sought permission to emigrate.

On the other end every emigration is an immigration, or "in - migration".

When Pierre emigrated from France, he immigrated to the United States.

To emigrate is to leave one country for another; to immigrate is to arrive in one country from another.


Eminent (EM uh nunt) adj: well known and respected; standing out from all others in quality or accomplishment; outstanding

The visiting poet was so eminent that our English teacher fell to the ground before him and licked his shoes. Our English teacher thought the poet was preeminent in his field.

The entire audience fell silent when the eminent musician walked onto the stage and picked up his banjo and bongo drums.

Don't confuse this word with imminent.


Empirical (em PIR I kul) adj: relying on experience or observation; not merely theoretical

The apple-dropping experiment gave the scientists empirical evidence that gravity exists.

Huey's idea about the moon being made of pizza dough was not empirical.

We proved the pie's deliciousness empirically by eating it.


Emulate (EM yuh LATE) v: to strive to equal or excel, usually through imitation

To emulate someone is to try to be just as good as, or better than, him or her.

The American company emulated its successful Japanese competitor but never quite managed to do as well.

Little Joey imitated his athletic older brother in the hope of one day emulating his success.

I got ahead by emulating those who had gone before me.


Encroach (en KROCH) v: to make gradual or stealthy inroads into; to trespass

As the city grew, it encroached on the countryside surrounding it.

With an encroaching sense of dread, I slowly pushed open the blood- spattered door.

My neighbor encroached on my yard by building his new stockade fence a few feet on my side of the property line.


Endemic (en DEM ik) adj: native; restricted to a particular region or era; indigenous

You won't find that kind of tree in California. It’s endemic in our part of the country.

That peculiar strain of influenza was endemic in a small community in South Carolina; there were no cases anywhere else.

The writer Tom Wolfe coined the term Me Decade to describe the egocentricity endemic in the 1970s.

Go to The Difficult Words Index

Letter of Invitation| Letter of Condolence| Business Letters

Synonyms and Antonyms

Vocabulary| English Teacher| Etymology| Longest Word | Letter Writing

Proverbs| Misspelled Words| Contractions

From Eminent to HOME PAGE