HSPT Verbal : Antonyms

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for HSPT Verbal

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Example Questions

Example Question #2 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "thrall" is __________.

Possible Answers:

trap

civilian

lord

socialite

viceroy

Correct answer:

lord

Explanation:

A "thrall" is a servant or slave to someone else. We often will also use this word in an expression like, "Peter was in thrall to his uncontrolled desire for chocolate." This means that Peter was a slave to his stomach—to his desire and love for chocolate. In contrast to this, the word "lord"—simple though it may be—is the best option. The only close option is "viceroy," which describes someone who rules in the stead of the main sovereign. We need a word that directly signifies being a lord or ruler, however, and to this end, the simple "lord" works best.

Example Question #1 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "intimates" is __________.

Possible Answers:

associates

educators

compatriots

leaders

adversaries

Correct answer:

adversaries

Explanation:

To be intimate with someone is to be close with that person. Generally speaking, when people are called "intimates," they are considered to be friends. The first contrast that comes to mind, therefore, is likely "enemies." While we do not have this as an option among the words provided for answers, we do have "adversaries," which basically means "opponents." The word comes from roots meaning turned against one another.

Example Question #2 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "heavens" is __________.

Possible Answers:

ground

inferno

condemnation

vice

grains

Correct answer:

ground

Explanation:

When used in the plural, the "heavens" are merely the sky—as in the whole contents of space. Because of the Judeo-Christian usage "heaven and hell," you are likely tempted to pick "inferno" or even "condemnation." However, the best antonym for the simple word "heavens" is the equally simple "ground." The contrast here is "heaven and earth."

Example Question #81 : Antonyms

An antonym of "deluge" is ___________.

Possible Answers:

drought

precocity

tedium

precipitation

draft

Correct answer:

drought

Explanation:

A "deluge" is a flood. It is very hard to find a tangible opposite to a flood, but we can consider the situation in which there is a lack of water. This would provide a decent antonym for us—enough to answer this question at least. Precipitation is something potentially wet (if it refers to rain or snow), and a draft does not directly signify being dry. The other two options are abstract states that do not apply to this question at all. Therefore, the best answer is "drought," describing a period of dry weather without any rain—quite the opposite of a deluge.

Example Question #2 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "sunset" is __________.

Possible Answers:

noonday

nocturne

evening

daybreak

midday

Correct answer:

daybreak

Explanation:

A direct contrast to "sunset" would be "sunrise." A number of these options are good words for saying "not-sunset"—such as "midday" and "noonday"; however, none of these are direct antonyms. The most direct contrast is found in the word "daybreak."

Example Question #7 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "equity" is __________.

Possible Answers:

singularity

distinction

justice

partiality

amenity

Correct answer:

partiality

Explanation:

"Equity" describes the character of someone who does not show favorites and is just in his or her actions. It is clearly related to words like "equality" and "equal." When someone is "impartial," he or she does not favor someone in an inequitable way. "Partiality," in contrast, is the character trait describing someone who does show such favoritism. It is therefore an excellent contrast to "equity."

Example Question #3 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "affiliation" is __________.

Possible Answers:

severance

leadership

ancestry

commerce

miscalculation

Correct answer:

severance

Explanation:

The word "filial" means related to or due from a son or daughter. Filial piety is the kind of respect that a child should have for his or her parents. To "affiliate" is to gather together into a group, as though one party is adopting another as its child. The opposite of an affiliation would then be the breaking apart of a group. To "sever" two things is to divide them. "Severance" describes the process of dividing in this way.

Example Question #8 : Antonyms: Nouns

An antonym of "generic" is __________.

Possible Answers:

expensive

popular

marketed

economical

specific

Correct answer:

specific

Explanation:

A number of the incorrect answers are trying to lead you to interpret "generic" in the sense of the kinds of store brands of food that are called "generic." In the past, you could buy such non-brand-name foods in containers that had no real labels on them—only the words naming the contents, all in black on a white background. These items are called "generic" because they fit the general description of the item—they are indeed "flakes of corn," as the box might say. The opposite of something "generic" is something that is "specific." This is the actual meaning of the word, for the pair "generic" and "specific" come from the logical notions of genus and species, as in: homo (genus) sapiens (species).

Example Question #3 : Antonyms: Nouns For Abstract Concepts

An antonym of "renaissance" is __________.

Possible Answers:

medievalism

misconduct

academy

triviality

degeneration

Correct answer:

degeneration

Explanation:

Historically, the Renaissance was a period of cultural rebirth, generally associated with the fourteenth through the sixteenth centuries. (There were also smaller renaissances in the middle ages—very important ones too!) The word comes from the literal roots meaning rebirth. The "-naissance" section of the word is related to other such words like "natal," "nativity," and "nascent." The idea of a renaissance in general is one of rebirth and cultural growth. In contrast to this, a period of degeneration is one in which things are falling apart and getting worse. Literally, the word "degeneration" means growing or developing downward.

Example Question #82 : Antonyms

An antonym of "barbarity" is __________.

Possible Answers:

morality

romanticism

misconduct

technology

civility

Correct answer:

civility

Explanation:

We generally think of barbarians when we hear the word "barbarity." This word originally came from the ancient Greek prejudice against other people. They seemed uncivilized to the ancient Greeks, who though that the "barbarians'" language sounded like "bar bar bar."  The word now has come to mean someone or something that is lacking cultural development and often also indicates cruelty. Among the options provided, "civility" is the best option. Civility refers to the manners and courtesy of someone who, generally speaking, lives in society. It comes from roots that are related to city life—as in "civilian" and "civil service."

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