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HOW TO USE THE DICTIONARY

Learn what the dictionary tells you about words.

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Some compound words (like bus rapid transit, dog whistle, or identity theft) don’t appear on the drop-down list when you enter them into the search window. If a compound term doesn’t appear in the drop-down list, try entering the term into the search window and then hit the search button (instead of the “enter” key). Alternatively, begin searches for compound terms with a quotation mark.

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THE USAGE PANEL

The Usage Panel is a group of nearly 200 prominent scholars, creative writers, journalists, diplomats, and others in occupations requiring mastery of language. The Panelists are surveyed annually to gauge the acceptability of particular usages and grammatical constructions.

The Panelists

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Go to our Crossword Puzzle Solver and type in the letters that you know, and the Solver will produce a list of possible solutions.

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AMERICAN HERITAGE DICTIONARY APP

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INDO-EUROPEAN & SEMITIC ROOTS APPENDICES

Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:

Indo-European Roots

Semitic Roots

The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.

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OPEN DICTIONARY PROJECT

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See word lists from the best-selling 100 Words Series!

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100 Words
100 Words to Make You Sound Smart

Did you know that brilliant communication is only 100 words away?

The editors of the American Heritage® Dictionaries are pleased to present the newest title in the best-selling 100 Words series, 100 Words to Make You Sound Smart. Whether you need to ace an interview, give a speech at a wedding, attend a dinner party, or impress a date, just a quick browse through this book and you'll be on your way to sounding articulate, educated, and literate. 100 Words to Make You Sound Smart is the perfect resource for anyone who wants to sound sharp, sophisticated, and in the know.

A colorful variety of words have been chosen, including handy words of just one syllable (such as glib) and words derived from the names of famous people (such as Freudian slip and Machiavellian). There are expressions from popular culture (Catch-22) and words that date back to classical civilization (spartan and stoic). Each word is clearly defined and shown in context with quotations from magazines, books, newspapers, movies, TV shows, and speeches.


Below is a complete list of the words in 100 Words to Make You Sound Smart:

accolade
acrimony
angst
anomaly
antidote
avant-garde
baroque
bona fide
boondoggle
bourgeois
bravado
brogue
brusque
byzantine
cacophony
camaraderie
capricious
carte blanche
Catch-22
caustic
charisma
cloying
déjà vu
dichotomy
dilettante
disheveled
élan
ennui
epitome
equanimity
equivocate
esoteric
euphemism
fait accompli
fastidious
faux pas
fiasco
finagle
Freudian slip
glib
gregarious
harbinger
hedonist
heresy
idiosyncratic
idyllic
indelicate
infinitesimal
insidious
junket
kitsch
litany
lurid
Machiavellian
malaise
malinger
mantra
maudlin
mercenary
minimalist
misnomer
narcissist
nirvana
non sequitur
nouveau riche
oblivion
ogle
ostentatious
ostracize
panacea
paradox
peevish
perfunctory
philistine
precocious
propriety
quid pro quo
quintessential
red herring
revel
rhetoric
scintillating
spartan
stigma
stoic
suave
Svengali
sycophant
teetotaler
tête-à-tête
tirade
tryst
ubiquitous
unrequited
untenable
vicarious
vile
waft
white elephant
zealous


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