Friday, 26 October 2012


An expression followed by four words is given in each of the questions. The expression carries the meaning of one the words. Find out the word and mark its corresponding letter as the answer.

1. A hastily made obstacle to preventing entering:

(A)fancying, (B) Balustrade, (C) Barricade, (D) Bastion

2. One who evaluates or judges fine arts:

(A) Adjudicator, (B) Artisan, (C) Critique, (D) Connoisseur.

3. Capable of reducing pain:

(A) Seductive, (B)Palliative, (C) Fugitive, (D) Vindictive.

4. A collection of parts into a mass of sum-total:

(A) Aggregate, (B) (A) Adjudicator, (B) Artisan, (C) Critique, (D) Connoisseur.

5. Having a quarrelsome character:

(A) Haughty, (B) Opponent, (C) Belligerent, (D) Salubrious.

6. Careful watching over possible wrong doing:

(A) Supervision, (B) Surveillance, (C) Servitude, (D) Reconnaissance.

7. Concerned with practical ideas or views:

(A) Orthodox, (B) Pragmatic, (C) Sensitive, (D) Apprehensive.

8. Showy but of little value:

(A) luxurious, (B) decorative, (C) Extrovert, (D) Trumpery.

9. Long lasting deep bitterness or ill-will:

(A) Rancour, (B) Grouse, (C)Empathy, (D) Enormity.

10. Very much concerned and anxious:

(A) Sombre, (B) Conciliatory, (C)impetuous, (D)Solicitous.


1.C, 2.D, 3. B, 4. A, 5. C, 6. B, 7. B, 8. D, 9. B, 10. D.

Note : You have forty words here. Refer ALD Oxford or Cambridge find out the exact word meaning of all the forty.

Contact the Library for the CD of the dictionary.

Sunday, 21 October 2012

Sentence Completion 2 blaks -2

Each question has a sentence with two blanks followed by five pairs of words. From the choices select the pair that completes the sentence.

1. The _____ production of the crop was affected by the prevailing _________ .

a)Daily ….. trend, b). Untimely…. Condition, c). Crop…. Flood, d). Seasonal….. loss, e). Seasonal…. Drought

2. While the world was ______ to the happenings in Washington and new York, America’s political class was-_____ by the attacks.

a).watching ….. worried, b). alert…. concerned, c).vigilant…. disturbed, d). averse….. excited, e) glued…. Devastated.

3. The one thing that kept the______ in good spirits at the otherwise disappointing Agra summit was the special bar for the ______ at the Mughal Sheraton.

a) press ….. people, b) scribes…. media, c) journalists…. commoners, d) reporters…..meeting,e) visitors…. Media.

 4. We are truly _____ to the many hands and hearts that made this book _______

a) obliged ….. plausible, b) honoured….feasible, c) beholden ……credible, d) grateful……. Possible e)thankful….. flexible.

5. I was felling rather ________ when I ______ a yellow envelop on the table.

a) happy ….. discerned, b) jubilant….. glimpsed, c) ecstatic…… perceived, d) miserable…… spotted, d) upset…. Glared at.


1. Production of crop is affected by ‘flood’ or ‘drought’. But option C is incorrect because of the word ‘crop’ in the first blank. Choice ‘e’ is apt .

2. ‘watching” is not followed by ‘to’ . So option 1 is incorrect. Option 2 is inapt because, ‘’concerned’ is not followed by ‘by’. The world was ‘glued’ to the happenings in Washington and it was likely that America’s political class was ‘devastated’ by the attacks.

3. It cannot be said that the ‘special bar for the people’ will keep the ‘press in good spirits’. Similarly, ‘the bar for the commoners’ is not likely to keep the ‘press in good spirits’. Choice ‘d’ and ‘e’ are absurd. Choice (b) is logical because ‘a bar for the media is likely to keep the scribes (journalists) in good spirits.

4. The first word of options a), d) and e) are possible in the first blank. But ‘plausible’ and ‘flexible’ do not make sense in the second blank. Hence (a) and (e) are in correct. Choice (d) is apt.

5. The first words of all the five choices are possible in the first blank, but the word ‘spotted’ is the only appropriate choice in the second blank because the reference is ‘to merely see’ the envelop. The words ‘discern’(=see or hear with great difficulty), ‘perceive’ (=become aware of) are comparatively inappropriate in the second blank.

confusing Words

Choose the best pairs of words/phrases

1. Doctors and paramedical staff in all emergency wards had their hands filled/had their hands full trying to receive blood splattered victims, many of them brought in semi-conscious state from the sites/sights of the bomb blast.

2. Freedom of speech and expression may be propagated by most countries, but institutions are wary/weary when practised inopportunely.

3. The vibrant economy is a reflection success of India’s middle and upper classes who form the engine which is driving the country’s development and evoke /invoke the image of a ‘shining India’.

4. Ramanuja’s compassion for suffering humanity made him consolidate the system of Visistadvata into exclusive/inclusive philosophy which is apparent from a perusal/ pursuance of many incidents of his life.

5. If inflation is not controlled quickly troubles will ensue/ issue for the government from several quarters.


1. ‘To have one’s hands full’ means to be busy with. It is the right expression. ‘site’ is the places where as ‘sights’ implies ability to see.

2. ‘wary’ means to be circumspect while ‘weary’ means tired.

3. An image is ‘evoked’ (cause something to occur) ‘invoke’ is to call upon and it does not suit the context.

4. The context indicates that Ramanuja devised an not an exclusive (= pertaining to a select few) but an inclusive (=pertaining to all) philosophy. “perusal” is a scrutiny of something and “ pursuance’ means continuation of something.

5. “Ensue” is apt here which means ‘develop as a consequence’.

Sentence Completion - 2 Blanks1

Each question has a sentence with two blanks followed by five pairs of words. From the choices select the pair that completes the sentence.

1. In our village herbs grow is ------ but there is a ----- of palatable vegetables.

(1) abundance… dearth, (2) luxury… gang, (3) seasons … draught, (4) magnitude…. Lot,  (5) affluence ……scarcity.

2. He tried to pass the ---- money at the bank as if it were----- .

(1) stolen… illegitimate, (2) bogus… genuine, (3) collected … supplied, (4) dishonest…. counterfeit,  (5) ill-gotten ……legitimate.

3. When he was ridiculed he was --- but he regained ----- very soon.

(1) happy… friendship, (2) worried… little, (3) chagrined … composure, (4) lost…. nothing,  (5) sad ……happiness

4. She was --- in needle work but ---- in arranging the wares.

(1) distressful…. attentive, (2) abominable… humane, (3) outlandish … urbane, (4) dextrous…. clumsy, (5) talented ……untidy.

5. His lifestyle made him --- but his recourse to medicine made him look ---.
(1) lanky… lean, (2) obese… emaciated, (3) fantastic … lunatic, (4) diabetic…. acrobatic,  (5) stout ……gangling.

6. Her dress was --- though she lived in --- surroundings.

(1) gorgeous… tidy, (2) splendid … evasive, (3) immaculate … squalid, (4) showy…. shabby, (5) attractive ……neat.

7. It was --- of you to make such --- remarks in the meeting.

(1) impudent… impromptu, (2) foolish… wholesome, (3) legitimate … unwanted, (4) part…. impartial, (5) polite ……rude.

8. The American society is said to be ---- whereas Indian society is ----.

(1) active… impassive, (2) licentious… liberal, (3) permissive … restrictive, (4) off-line…. wayward, (5) catholic ……broad-minded.

9. I --- him because of his ----- behavior.

(1) congratulate… gory, (2) hate… hasty, (3) admit … stupid, (4) detest…. supercilious, (5) adore ……obnoxious.


10. The news about the bank --- threw the financial market into a

(1) fraud… turmoil, (2) account… epidemic, (3) cheating … confidence, (4) safety…. Suspicion, (5) scam ……excitement


1. The two points of the sentence are separated by a conjunction “but”, indicating that the words in the blanks should be contrasting. Hence the words ‘abundance’ (=excess, surfet) and dearth (= scarcity) are apt. Option 4 is ruled out because it cannot be said that ‘herbs grow in affluence’.

2. The structure of the sentence indicates that contrasting words fit into the blanks. Choice 2 is the most apt in the context. “bogus’ money can be passed as “legitimate’’. The words “stolen”, “illegitimate” (= illegal), “collected’, and “supplied’ , “dishonest and ‘counterfeit”(= fake), ‘ill gotten’ and ‘legitimate’ (= legal) do not make sense in the blank.

3. One is likely to be chagrined (= annoyed) on being ridiculed. But not “happy’, ‘worried’, ‘sad’, or ‘lost’. Choice 3 is the most logical.

4. The conjunction “but” indicates that contrasting words fit into the blanks. Hence ‘dextrous’ (= showing neat skill) and ‘clumsy’ are apt.

5. The structure of the sentence indicates that contrasting words fit into the blanks. Hence ‘obese’ and ‘emaciated’ (= lean ) are apt. Option 5 is inapt in comparison.

6. The structure of the sentence indicates that contrasting words fit into the blanks. Option 3 is the most logical in the given blanks. In spite of the ‘squalid’ (= filthy) surroundings in which she lived, her dress is immaculate (= completely tidy). The remaining options do not make sense.

7. Unwanted remarks are not ‘legitimate’ (= legal), ‘rude’ remarks are not ‘partial’, but ‘impromptu’ (= impulsive) remarks are certainly ‘impudent’ (= disrespectful, cheeky).

8. The conjunction “whereas” indicates that contrasting words fit into the blanks. Hence the words ‘restrictive’ and ‘permissive’ are not apt in the context. The words ‘licentious’ (= immoral) and ‘liberal (= open-minded) , ‘off-line’ (= not connected to computer), and ‘wayward’ (= disobedient) , ‘catholic’ (= liberal) and ‘broad minded are inappropriate.

9. A person is ‘detested’ (=hated) for his ‘supercilious’ (= haughty) behavior and not ‘hasty’.

10. A bank ‘fraud’ is likely to throw the financial market into a ‘turmoil’. The remaining options are illogical.
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Saturday, 22 September 2012


A man is worried that his wife is losing her hearing, so he consults a doctor. The doctor suggests that he try a simple at-home test on her: Stand behind her and ask her a question first from twenty feet away, next from ten feet, and finally right behind her.

So the man goes home and sees his wife in the kitchen facing the stove. He says from the door, “What’s for dinner tonight?”

No answer.

Ten feet behind her, he repeats, “What’s for dinner tonight?”

Still, no answer.

Finally, right behind her he says, “What’s for dinner tonight?”

And his wife turns around and says, “For the third time—chicken!”

2. A 103-year-old woman in Wales is the oldest Facebook user. It just goes to show you that you’re never too old to waste your precious time.

3. Jean Paul, a Cajun, moved to Texas and bought a donkey from an old famer for $100. The farmer agreed to deliver the donkey the next day. The next day the farmer drove up and said, “Sorry, but I got some bad news. The donkey died.”

“Well then, just give me my money back.”

“Can’t do that, I went and spent it already.”

“OK then, just unload the donkey.”

“What are you gonna do with him?”

“I’m gonna raffle him off.”

“You can’t raffle off a dead donkey!”

“Sure, I can. Watch me. I just won’t tell anyone he’s dead.”

A month later the farmer met up with the Cajun and asked, “What happened with the dead donkey?”

“I raffled him off. I sold 500 tickets at $2 a piece and made a profit of $898.”

“Didn’t anyone complain?”

“Just the guy who won. So I gave him his $2 back.”

4. A woman goes to a spiritualist—a medium. She wants to get in touch with the spirit of her dead husband. The medium goes into a trance and after a while a voice comes out.

“Barbara,” it says, “Are you there?”

“That’s Jack,” the wife says, “I’d know his voice anywhere. Jack, tell me…where you are…is it nice?”

“Barbara, it’s absolutely gorgeous…The sky is beautiful blue with pretty white clouds…

and the cows…Barbara, I really wish you could see these cows. Brown cows, black cows, white cows—such beautiful cows I’ve never seen, never in my whole life.”

“But… Jack, I didn’t know they had cows in Heaven.”

“Who’s talking about Heaven? I’m a bull in Argentina!”

5.There was a young fellow of Kochi,

Who lived with three wives at one time.

When asked: “Why the third?”

He replied: “One’s absurd,

And bigamy, sir, is a crime.”

6. Three old men were sitting on a front porch comparing their memories. The first one says “I remember being in a stroller, I must have been two.

The second one says “I remember standing up in the crib and looking around.”

The third one says “You both have lousy memories, I remember going to a picnic

with my dad and coming home with my mom.”

7. Why aren’t elephants allowed in the swimming pool?

Because they can’t keep their trunks up.

8. The wife was in front of the divorce judge and said, “All I’m asking is that my husband should leave me the way he found me.”

Slightly taken aback, the judge said, “But lady, that’s impossible.”

“Why impossible?” she persisted. “He found me as a widow, didn’t he?”

9. If everyone owned a horse, the country would be more stabilized.

10. A Sunday school teacher was discussing the Ten Commandments with her five and six-year-olds. After explaining the commandment to “Honor thy father and mother,” she asked, “Is there a commandment that teaches us how to treat our brothers and sisters?”

One little boy replied, “Thou shalt not kill.”

11. Why can’t you eat carrots with fingers?

Carrots don’t have fingers.

12. Scientists think they can now clone an all-white zebra. Isn’t that called a horse?

PS: If you have some jokes or anecdotes pl send them.  We can share it.                       

Omission of Articles

Omission of the Articles:
Cases Where Articles are Not Used

The articles are not used:

1. Before proper, material and abstract nouns used in a general sense:

London, France, Tom, gold, rice, honesty, virtue

Paris is the capital of France. (NOT The Paris is …)

Gold is a precious metal. (NOT The gold is a …)

Honesty is the best policy.

But we say, the United States, the United Arab Emirates etc.

2. Before a common noun used in its commonest sense:

Man is mortal.

Iron is a useful metal.

3. In certain phrases made up of a preposition + noun:

Examples are: on foot, at school, from top to bottom, at home, in bed, by train, by car, in debt, in hand, on earth, at noon, on board, in jest, at best, at worst etc.

He is in debt. (NOT He is in the debt.)

He is at school. (NOT He is at the school.)

He spent the whole day in bed.

4. In certain phrases consisting of a transitive verb and its object:

Give ear, set sail, take heart, send word, catch fire, take offence, leave office, leave home, leave office etc.

He took offence at my words. (BUT NOT He took the offence at my words.)
She left home in the morning. (BUT NOT She left the home in the morning.)

5. Before the names of continents, countries, capes, cities, towns, days, months, arts, languages, sciences, some diseases etc.

January, March, physics, English, Tokyo, Beijing, Delhi, Tuesday, Friday, Asia, America etc.

December is a cold month.

English is spoken all over the world.

6. Before common nouns when they go in pairs:

Both husband and wife received serious injuries.

7. Before plural nouns used to denote a class:

Apples are red.

Camels are useful animals.

Warm clothes are necessary in cold climates.

8. Before the nouns following kind of:

What kind of flower is it? (NOT What kind of a flower is it?)

9. Before meal-time

He was at dinner.

Breakfast was served at night. (BUT NOT The breakfast was served at night.)

Some special points

Compare the pairs of sentences given below:

I have a black and white cow. (Only one cow)

I have a black and a white cow. (Two cows)

The secretary and accountant is present. (Here the nouns secretary and accountant refer to the same person.)

The secretary and the accountant were present. (Here the repetition of the articles implies that the secretary and the accountant are different persons.)

( Reference:Encyclopadea of Idioms and usage; Oxford  UTY Press)
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Sunday Idioms- 20

The English language is one of the vastest and most vivid languages in the world. It is made up of over 1.5 million words. Over and above that, the same word can have a variety of different meanings depending on the context it is put in; two (or more) words can have the exact same spelling but are pronounced differently, depending on their meanings.

Today's article will mainly focus on those combinations of words which are commonly referred to as idioms or idiomatic expressions . It is important to point out that idioms use language in a non-literal (and sometimes metaphorical) way.

The meaning of the idiomatic expression cannot be deduced by looking at the meaning of the individual words that it is made up of' (Cambridge Encyclopaedia of the English Language, David Crystal). Another important feature to point out is that idioms are fixed, which means that people cannot just decide to make up their own.

The following is a list of some of the most widely-used idioms in everyday English and their meanings.

Idioms, can you guess their meanings? (Answers below)

1. A penny for your thoughts

2. Add insult to injury

3. A hot potato

4. Once in a blue moon

5. Caught between two stools

6. See eye to eye

7. Hear it on the grapevine

8. Miss the boat

9. Kill two birds with one stone

10. On the ball

11. Cut corners

12. To hear something straight from the horse's mouth

13. Costs an arm and a leg

14. The last straw

15. Take what someone says with a pinch of salt

16. Sit on the fence

17. The best of both worlds

18. Put wool over other people's eyes

19. Feeling a bit under the weather

20. Speak of the devil!


1. This idiom is used as a way of asking someone what they are thinking about.

2. When people add insult to injury, they make a bad situation even worse.

3. This idiom is used to speak of an issue (especially in current affairs) which many people are talking about.

4. This is used when something happens very rarely.

5. When someone finds it difficult to choose between two alternatives.

6. This idiom is used to say that two (or more people) agree on something.

7. This means ‘to hear a rumour' about something or someone.

8. This idiom is used to say that someone missed his or her chance at something.

9. This means ‘to do two things at the same time'.

10. When someone understands the situation well.

11. When something is done badly to save money. For example, when someone buys products that are cheap but not of good quality.

12. To hear something from the authoritative source.

13. When something is very expensive.

14. The final problem in a series of problems.

15. This means not to take what someone says too seriously. There is a big possibility that what he/she says is only partly true.

16. This is used when someone does not want to choose or make a decision.

17. All the advantages.

18. This means to deceive someone into thinking well of them.

19. Feeling slightly ill.

20. This expression is used when the person you have just been talking about arrives.
Now,frame sentences and send them to me to be published in your  name.

                                (Courtesy of Elanguest Language School)