English Words in Action, Group F

(a variety of English words which have developed through history and are currently used in our modern age)

English vocabulary quizzes in random order from easy to more difficult for greater word skills.

Simply click on this banner (or the following link) and you will be on your way to stimulate your brain for greater word comprehension with quizzes based on some of the words in this unit.

frenzied (adjective), more frenzied, most frenzied
Pertaining to a great and often wild or uncontrolled activity: There is often a frenzied crowd of people who are in stores buying things just before Christmas.
A reference to being very excited or enthusiastic.
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Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
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fresco (FRES koh) (s) (noun); frescoes, frescos (pl)
The art of painting on fresh, moist plaster with pigments dissolved in water: Michelangelo created amazing frescos on the ceiling of the chapel.

The fresco on the wall depicted lovely pastoral scenes.

fresco (verb), frescoes; frescoed, frescoing
To paint onto wet plaster on a wall and/or a ceiling: Leonard and his fellow workers frescoed artistic scenes on the walls for the art exhibition.
fresh (adjective), more fresh, most fresh
1. That which is new to one's experience or not encountered before: The playwright included a lot of fresh material in his new drama.
2. Recently made, produced, or harvested; not stale or spoiled: Fresh bread is available at the local bakery every morning, except on Sunday.
3. Not preserved, as by canning, smoking, or freezing: The store is providing fresh vegetables from local farms.
4. Not saline or salty: Having fresh water is essential to good health.

It was so good to taste fresh meat and fresh water again after the trip in the desert.

5. Not yet used or soiled; still clean: Sally took out a fresh sheet of paper from the desk to write a letter to her friend.
6. Free from impurity or pollution; pure: It's wonderful when Sean can open the windows and get some fresh air in the apartment.
7. Being improperly sassy, insolent, or a smart-aleck: The boy's mother sent him to his room because of his fresh behavior.
frivolity (fri VAHL i tee) (s) (noun), frivolities (pl)
1. Something that is silly, clownish, and not serious: As long as it lasted, they wined and dined with happy frivolity.
2. Thoughtlessness or irresponsibility: Earl's mother couldn't understand the frivolity of his behavior.
3. Foolish behavior or actions; the state of being trivial and unimportant: Helena spends a lot of money on the latest fashions and other frivolities.
4. Etymology: from Latin: frivolus, "silly, empty, trifling"; from friare, "to break, to rub away, to crumble".
frivolous (FRIV uh luhs) (adjective), more frivolous, most frivolous
1. Silly, impractical, or whimsical: At least twice a year, Antonio bought something frivolous just to satisfy his ego.
2. Petty, superficial, nonsensical: Kimberly kept wondering why Lorna would marry such a frivolous guy.
frump (s) (noun), frumps (pl)
A woman who wears unattractive clothes or does not make an effort to appear pleasing or appealing to the senses: Madelin was a homeless frump who could not afford to buy better dresses.
An unattractive woman.
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Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

funnies, funny papers (pl) (noun)
Usually humorous sketches or drawings that present a story or a political commentary, typically appearing in a newspaper or in a booklet form: Some people not only enjoy reading the funnies in the newspapers, but also in a variety of comic books.

Jennifer and her family always look forward to seeing the comics in their funny papers.

funny (adjective), funnier, funniest
1. That which causes laughter or amusement: Henry told some funny stories that made everyone laugh.
2. Anything that is intended or designed to amuse: The comedian told some of the funniest jokes that Mollie has ever heard.
3. Strangely or suspiciously odd; in an abnormal manner: Alisa was behaving in a funny way.

Laurel's car has been making a funny sound lately.

4. Experiencing odd bodily sensations: Norman told the doctor about the funny sensations in his chest.
5. Beyond or deviating from the usual or what is normally expected: Susana's voice has a funny twanging sound.
funny bone (s) (noun), funny bones (pl)
A place at the back of the elbow where a person feels a painful tingling sensation when it is hit or it hits against something: William hit his funny bone on the edge of the door and it was not a pleasant feeling!
furbish (verb), furbishes; furbished; furbishing
1. To polish or to make bright by cleaning or rubbing: Michael was furbishing his car so it would be clean and shiny again after it was splattered by other vehicles on the highway during the rainstorm the day before.
2. To make something new or to restore it in order to make it serviceable or attractive again: Lucinda furbished her table top by getting rid of the scratches and putting new polish on it.
furlough (s) (noun), furloughs (pl)
1. A leave for a vacation or absence from duty with pay: More often, a furlough is granted to members of the military forces so they can travel on vacation.
2. A temporary layoff from work: With the government shutdown, people are forced to take a furlough without pay.
3. The documents or authorization papers showing that a person is permitted to take a leave of absence: The sergeant had his furlough in his jacket to show that he had permission by his unit to go home on leave to be with his family for two weeks.
4. Etymology: from Dutch verlof, "permission"; from Middle Dutch ver-, "completely, for" + <>laf, lof, "permission".
furlough (verb), furloughs; furloughed; furloughing
1. To grant or give permission to take a leave of absence: In the U.S. military, members are often furloughed (with pay) so they can take care of special issues or be with their families, etc.
2. To lay off workers for economic reasons: The government had to furlough many workers without pay because of the shutdown and that caused many of them to have serious financial problems.
Smokey the bear is furloughed.

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furtive (adjective), more furtive, most furtive
1. A reference to being secret and trying to take actions to escape being noticed: Danny was sneaking furtive glances at his watch during the business conference to see how much longer he would have to sit there before he could go home.
2. Descriptive of someone who is sly, shifty, or stealthy: The man's furtive behavior at the bank apparently was enough to get the management to alert the police.

In New York City, there is a claim that at least half the stops and searches of blacks and Latinos by the police are done because of their "furtive movements" or behaviors.

3. Referring to covert or sneaky activities; especially, when a person, who is in the process of stealing, doesn't want to be caught: Debora was furtive as she engaged in her illegal activities of shoplifting in the store.
3. Etymology: derived from the Latin furtivus, "stolen" from furtum, "theft, secret action".
Pertaining to an attempt to do something secretly or in a sneaky way.
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Relating to being sly and stealthy.

Conveying a sneaky way of doing something.
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Go to this Word A Day Revisited Index
so you can see more of Mickey Bach's cartoons.

furtively (adverb), more furtively, most furtively
Slyly or secretly in manner or behavior: The woman furtively returned the library book that she had taken last month without checking it out.

Links to all of the groups of English words in action, Groups A to Z.

You may see the bibliographic list of sources of information for these words in action.