Academic vocabulary starting with U, V, and W

ubiquitous (adj): existing or being present everywhere, especially at the same time; omnipresent

ulterior (adj): situated beyond or outside

undercut (v): to cut away the underpart of

undermine (v): to weaken

underrate (v): to undervalue

underreport (v): to report as less or fewer than is correct. Example: to underreport the enemy’s strength.

underscore (v): 1. underline. 2. emphasize

— underscore (n): underline

undertake (v): 1. to promise to accomplish. 2. to accept as a challenge

undue (adj): 1. excessive. 2. inappropriate.

undulate (v): to move like a wave or in waves; to move in a wavy pattern

unsettle (v): cause to be no longer fixed or established

urban (adj): pertaining to city

urbane (adj): elegant; sophisticated, polished, cultured, refined

vacate (v): to leave

vacuous (adj): empty; without contents; without ideas or intelligence

vain (adj): excessively proud of or concerned about one’s own appearance, qualities, achievements, etc.

vanquish (v): to conquer

vault (v): jump over; overleap; leap over (an obstacle)

— vault (n): 1. the act of jumping over an obstacle. 2. a kind of room or building: an arched structure

vegetate (v): behave like a vegetation (plant)

velvet (n): a type of expensive cloth which has smooth and soft surface

velvety (adj): smooth and soft

venerable (adj): respected because of age. Example: a venerable leader

venerate (v): to give great respect; to respect deeply

— veneration (n)

venom (n): poisonous fluid that certain animals secrete

venture (v): to put at risk; to undertake risk

— venture (n): risky undertaking

veracity (n): truthfulness

— veracious (adj): habitually speaking the truth

verbatim (adj, adv): using exactly the same words

verbose (adj): wordy; using or containing too many words

verdant (adj): green with vegetation; inexperienced

verve (n): an energetic style

vestige (n): a mark, trace, or visible evidence of something that is no longer present or in existence. Example: A few columns were the last vestiges of a Greek temple.

vestment (n): clothing; covering

vexation (n): annoyance

vicarious (adj): taking the place of another; done in place of another; acting or serving as a substitute

vigilance (n): watchfulness in guarding against danger

— vigilant (adj)

visage (n): 1. face appearance of a person. 2. look or appearance of a person

vista (n): scene, view, or panorama

visceral (adj): of the internal organs

vintage (adj): old but high quality

vivacious (adj): lively

— vivacity (n): liveliness

vivid (adj): having bright and striking color

volatile (adj): liable to sudden change

volubility (n): verbosity

— voluble (adj): verbose; fluent; having great fluency in speaking

voracious (adj): eating with greediness or in very large quantity

waffle (v): to talk vaguely; to speak equivocally

waver (v): to hesitate; to fluctuate between choices

well-doer (n): a performer of moral and social duties

whim (n): an odd or fanciful idea

— whimsical (adj): full of odd and fanciful ideas

wholly (adv): completely

winsome (adj): sweetly and innocently charming

writhe (v): to twist


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