ISEE Upper Level Verbal : Synonyms

Study concepts, example questions & explanations for ISEE Upper Level Verbal

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Example Questions

Example Question #38 : Synonyms: Prefixes

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

EXTROVERTED

Possible Answers:

Calculating

Precocious

Radical

Reserved

Outgoing

Correct answer:

Outgoing

Explanation:

The prefix "extro-" means outside, so it makes sense that “extroverted” means outgoing and gregarious. As for the other answer choices, "reserved" means shy and inhibited or unavailable because something is being kept for someone specific; “calculating” means cunning, ruthless, crafty, and shrewd; “radical” means holding or supporting extreme reform; and "precocious" means developing and learning at an advanced rate.

Example Question #39 : Synonyms: Prefixes

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

DEFUNCT

Possible Answers:

Suppressed

Inoperative

Hampered

Disorderly

Considerate

Correct answer:

Inoperative

Explanation:

The prefix "de-" can mean away or remove, and the rest of the word, "-funct," is related to the Latin term meaning work (think of the English word "function"). It thus makes sense that "defunct" means no longer working or "inoperative." As for the other answer choices, "suppressed” means held down, repressed, or crushed; “disorderly” means out of control; “hampered” means impeded, obstructed, or slowed down; and "considerate" means thinking of other people's feelings when making decisions or deciding how to act.

Example Question #40 : Synonyms: Prefixes

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

CONSTITUTE

Possible Answers:

sign

oversee

legalize

establish

decriminalize

Correct answer:

establish

Explanation:

The word “constitute” is comprised of two parts that you likely know. The prefix “con-” means “with” and is found in “concur” as well as in the related “cum-” form in “cumulative” and the “com-” form in “commune.” The “-stitute” comes from the Latin for “to stand” or “to set up.” The United States “Constitution” is so named because it “sets up” the whole nation out of the parts from which it is “constituted.” The word can also mean “to be a part out of a whole,” as in, “The small group constituted a minority in the larger society.”

Example Question #41 : Synonyms: Prefixes From Latin

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

CONVIVIAL

Possible Answers:

Skipping

Sociable

Audible

Roaring

Intoxicated

Correct answer:

Sociable

Explanation:

The word “convivial” literally means “living with.” It is derived from the prefix “con-”, meaning “with” and the base “-vivial,” which is related to a cluster of words signifying life or living such as “vivacious,” “survive,” and “revive.” When someone is “convivial,” he or she is friendly or sociable. It is this latter sense that is found among the possible answers.

Example Question #42 : Using Prefixes, Suffixes, And Roots To Identify Synonyms

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

PROGRESSIVE

Possible Answers:

Exorbitant

Developing

Libertine

Destined

Futuristic

Correct answer:

Developing

Explanation:

The word “progressive” is related to words like “regress” and “digression.” It is comprised of two roots, both of which are likely familiar. The prefix “pro-” here means “forward.” The “-gress” comes from the Latin word for “to step.” The words “grade” and “gradual” both come from this same base, as do the aforementioned words. The word “progress” means “a step forward” in the sense of advancing some activity or cause. The word “progressive” has many uses, though they all are related to this sense of “advancing.” A “progressive” idea is often one that looks to advance or make better the world. It often comes with the additional sense of being “enlightened” (sometimes implying, unfairly, that those who hesitate to make such changes are not as high-minded). Among the options provided, “developing” most closely fits the sense of “advancing.”

Example Question #81 : Synonyms

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

ATHEIST

Possible Answers:

Nonbeliever

Heretic

Scientist

Immoralist

Secularist

Correct answer:

Nonbeliever

Explanation:

The word “atheist” means “one who does not believe in the existence of any god. The “a-” prefix here is privative, making the word to mean the opposite of the base “theist.”

The base itself means “one believing in God.” It is found in other words like “theology” (the study of God or gods) and “pantheism” (the belief that the world and God are identical). Likewise, the “th” becomes “d” in some contexts like “deity” and “deism.” Among the options given, the best is “nonbeliever.” Do not be tricked by the other options that are at most accidentally related to the word “atheist.”

Example Question #44 : Using Prefixes, Suffixes, And Roots To Identify Synonyms

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

ANTECEDENT

Possible Answers:

Precursor

Appreciation

Predicate

Intention

Maneuver

Correct answer:

Precursor

Explanation:

"Antecedent" is a noun that means "a thing or event that existed before or logically precedes another," so we need to pick out another answer choice that means something like "forerunner." "Predicate" may look like a potentially correct answer because both it and "antecedent" have meanings specific to grammar. ("Antecedent" can also mean "a word, phrase, clause, or sentence to which another word (especially following a relative pronoun) refers.") However, "predicate" does not mean the same thing as "antecedent," so it cannot be the correct answer. "Precursor," a noun which means "a person or thing that comes before another of the same kind; a forerunner," is the answer choice that is closest in meaning to "antecedent," so "precursor" is the correct answer.

Example Question #45 : Using Prefixes, Suffixes, And Roots To Identify Synonyms

EULOGY

Possible Answers:

Oration

Panegyric

Discussion

Kindness

Funeral

Correct answer:

Panegyric

Explanation:

Often, one speaks of a “eulogy” being delivered at a funeral, but such speeches are not necessarily limited to those occasions. The word is comprise of the prefix “eu-” and “-logy.” The former means “good.” It is found in the word “euphony,” meaning “good sounding.” The “-logy” portion of “eulogy” means “words” as found in the English word “logic.” For these reasons, “eulogy” generally means a speech given in praise of someone. A panegyric is likewise such a positive speech.

Example Question #46 : Using Prefixes, Suffixes, And Roots To Identify Synonyms

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

INTERMISSION

Possible Answers:

Interval

Task

Expedition

Conspiracy

Accomplishment

Correct answer:

Interval

Explanation:

The “-mission” portion of “intermission” is related to Latin root words for “to send.” The word “transmit” literally means “to send across (from one area to another).” The prefix “inter-” means “between.” “Interscholastic” sports are sports between two schools. An intermission is a period of time that is placed “between” two things, for instance, between two acts in a play. The word “interval,” though somewhat more vague than this sense, is the best option among those given.

Example Question #47 : Using Prefixes, Suffixes, And Roots To Identify Synonyms

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

REFUGE

Possible Answers:

Shelter

Exile

Prisoner

Rescued

Fleeing

Correct answer:

Shelter

Explanation:

The word “refuge” is derived from the prefix “re-”, here implying the sense of “back” and the base “-fuge.” The “-fuge” base is related to English words like “fugitive” and “refugee.” It is derived from the Latin for “to flee.” “Refuge” thus means “to flee back(ward).” A place that is a refuge is one to which someone flees for protection. For example, one could say, “The child fled to its mother’s arms as a refuge from its fear.” Of course, the word could be used to refer to a building, location, or anything else of that sort.

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