HSPT Verbal : Synonyms: Adjectives and Adverbs

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for HSPT Verbal

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Example Questions

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Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives And Adverbs

"Inelastic" most nearly means __________.

Possible Answers:

metallic

rubbery

resilient

wooden

rigid

Correct answer:

rigid

Explanation:

In its physical sense, the word "elastic" means bendable or flexible. Hence, we use it to describe things like "elastic bands" that are used for gathering together items. When something is "inelastic" it is not flexible in that way. The "in-" prefix is a privative prefix, meaning that it means not. (This is much like the prefix "un-.") Therefore, something that is "inelastic" could be said to be rigid.

Example Question #2 : Synonyms: Adjectives Describing Appearance, Materiality, And Sensory Imagery

"Chimerical" most nearly means __________.

Possible Answers:

amazing

lucid

laconic

inorganic

illusory

Correct answer:

illusory

Explanation:

A "chimera" is a kind of mythological creature, but generally the word has come to signify something that cannot possibly occur or exist in reality. Therefore, when something is described as being "chimerical," it is an illusion—something "illusory."

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives Describing Appearance, Materiality, And Sensory Imagery

"Scintillating" most nearly means __________.

Possible Answers:

engrossing

fecund

languid

beautiful

luminous

Correct answer:

luminous

Explanation:

The word "scintillating" comes from the Latin word for "spark" (as in a spark of fire or light). Something that is scintillating has the kind of spark or glow of such a fire. Therefore, it means bright. Something that is "luminous" is very bright or enlightened.

Example Question #51 : Synonyms

Synonyms: Select the one word or phrase whose meaning is closest to the word in capital letters.

MACABRE

Possible Answers:

Gruesome

Panicked

Understated

Protective

Methodical

Correct answer:

Gruesome

Explanation:

“Macabre” means gruesome, horrifying, or pertaining to death, so "gruesome" is the correct answer. None of the other answers are close in meaning to “macabre”. “Understated” means modest or simple. “Protective” means defensive or shielding. “Panicked” means frightened. “Methodical” means systematic. 

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives Describing Appearance, Materiality, And Sensory Imagery

Select the answer choice that is closest in meaning to the word in capital letters.

OPULENT

Possible Answers:

Opaque

Sumptuous

Putrid

Benevolent

Complex

Correct answer:

Sumptuous

Explanation:

"Opulent" is an adjective that means lavish, and since "sumptuous" means expensive-looking, it is the answer choice closest in meaning to "opulent," so it is the correct answer.

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives Describing Appearance, Materiality, And Sensory Imagery

Select the answer choice that is closest in meaning to the word in capital letters.

IMPERVIOUS

Possible Answers:

Insignificant

Unaffected

Stained

Flawless

Independent

Correct answer:

Unaffected

Explanation:

"Impervious" means not letting things pass through, or unaffected by something. One might write, "While everyone else got sick, Michael seemed impervious to germs."

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives And Adverbs

Select the answer choice that is closest in meaning to the word in capital letters.

SINEWY

Possible Answers:

Brief

Vulgar

Upright

Ecstatic

Stringy

Correct answer:

Stringy

Explanation:

"Sinewy" means tough, stringy, or strong.

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives Describing Appearance, Materiality, And Sensory Imagery

Select the answer choice that is closest in meaning to the word in capital letters.

GARISH

Possible Answers:

Severe

Delightful

Frightening

Proper

Lurid

Correct answer:

Lurid

Explanation:

"Garish" means too bright and showy, and the correct answer "lurid" means having a color so bright that it is unpleasant. The other choices do not have similar definitions: "delightful" means fun and joyful, "proper" means appropriate, "severe" means harsh, and "frightening" means scary.

Example Question #61 : Synonyms

"Cogent" most nearly means __________.

Possible Answers:

cultured

compelling

active

amazing

precarious

Correct answer:

compelling

Explanation:

The word "cogent" is generally used to describe an argument that someone might be making. It means logical or convincing. An example sentence would be, "After he presented the facts, his argument seemed to be quite cogent. Therefore, I agreed with his decision and followed his instructions." Such an argument is also "compelling," meaning something like irresistible—as though the argument is so strong that it cannot be "overcome."

Example Question #1 : Synonyms: Adjectives And Adverbs

"Abstract" most nearly means __________.

Possible Answers:

intelligent

pedantic

distinct

intuitive

theoretical

Correct answer:

theoretical

Explanation:

The word "abstract" literally means to pull away from. (Surprisingly, it comes from the same root as the word "tractor.") An abstract idea "pulls away" information from our immediate experience into more general categories of thought. It is therefore somewhat theoretical or conceptual in nature. The "abstract" notion of "human person" is very general and theoretical in comparison with a concrete person who stands directly in front of us.

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