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macabre adj. connected with death, and thus causing fear; gruesome
mace n. large heavy club formerly used as a weapon, usu having a head with metal spikes ,
macerate v. (cause sth to) become soft or break up by soaking
Machiavellian adj. cunning and deceitful in gaining what one wants; showing such cunning or deceit
machinations [ machination: ] an intrigue, plot, or scheme
maculated make dirty or spotty; also used metaphorically ; spot, stain, or pollute
madrigal n. songfor several voices, usu without instrumental accompaniment,on the themes of love and/or nature 16,
maelstrom n. great whirlpool
magisterial adj. having or showing authority
magistrate n. official who acts as a judge in the lowest courts; Justice of the Peace
magnanimity n. being magnanimous
magnate n. wealthy and powerful landowner or industrialist
magniloquent adj. (of words, speech) pompous-sounding ,
magnitude n. (usu large) size
maim v. wound or injure so that part of the body cannot be used
makeshift n, adj used temporarily until sth better is available
maladroit adj. not clever or skilful; clumsy; bungling
malady n. disease; illness
malaise n. general feeling of illness, without clear signs of a particular disease
malapropism ncomical confusion of a word with another, similar-sounding,word which has a quite different meaning, eg `an ingenuousmachine for peeling potatoes'
malapropos of an inappropriate or misapplied nature or kind
malcontent n, adj discontented and rebellious
malediction n. prayer that sb or sth may be destroyed, hurt, etc; curse ;
malefactor n. wrongdoer; criminal
malevolent adj. ~ wishing to do evil or cause harm to others; spiteful
malfeasance a wrongful act that the actor had no right to do; improper professional conduct
malicious adj. intended to harm others
malign v. say unpleasant or untrue things about
malignant adj. feeling or showing great desire to harm others; malevolent
malingerer n. person who malingers
malleable adj. that can be beaten or pressed into different shapes easily
malodorous adj. smelling unpleasant
mammal n. any of the class of animals that give birth to live offspring and feed their young on milk from the breast
mammoth n. large hairy type of elephant, now extinct
manacle n. one of a pair of chains or metal bands for binding the hands or feet; fetter ;
mandate n. ~ (to do sth) authority given to a party, trade union, etc by the people who support it
mandatory adj. required by law; compulsory
maneuver = manoeuvre
mange n. skin disease of hairy animals, caused by a parasite
mangle v. damage greatly, (almost) beyond recognition; mutilate
mangy adj. suffering from mange
maniacal adj. violently mad
manifest adj. ~ (fml ) clear and obvious
manifestation outward demonstration; indication
manifesto n. (publication containing a) public declaration by a political party, ruler, etc of principles and policy
manifold adj. of many types; many and various
manipulate v. control or handle with skill
mannered adj. having an unnatural style of speaking, writing, etc; affected
mannerism n. peculiar habit of behaviour, speech, etc
mantle n. loose sleeveless cloak
manumit v. (fml ) (formerly) free (a slave)
mar v. damage (sth); spoil
maraud a sudden short attack ; search for plunder
margin n. blank space round the written or printed matter on a page
marginal adj. of or in a margin
marital adj. of ahusband or wife; of marriage
maritime adj. of the sea, sailing or shipping
marked adj. clear; noticeable; easily seen
maroon adj. n brownish red
marred [ mar: ] vt. to cause harm to; spoil or impair
marrow n. soft fatty substance that fills the hollow parts of human and animal bones
marshal n. officer of high rank
marsupial n, adj of the class of mammals which includes the kangaroo, the female of which has a pouch on its body to hold its young
martial adj. of or associated with war
martinet n. person who imposes strict discipline and demands obedience to orders
martyr n. person who is killed or made to suffer greatly because of his beliefs
mash n. grain, bran, etc cooked in water until soft, used as food for animals
masochist n.
mason n. person who builds in or works with stone
masquerade n. false show; pretence
mass n. celebration of Christ's Last Supper, esp in the Roman Catholic Church
masticate v. chew (food)
mat n. piece of material, made of straw, rushes, fibre, etc, used to cover part of a floor
materialism n. 1obsession with material possessions,bodily comforts, etc while neglecting spiritual values
maternal adj. of or like a mother
matriarch n. female head of a family or tribe
matriculate v. be admitted or admit as a student to a university
matrimony n. state of being married; marriage
matrix n. mould into which molten metal, liquid, etc is poured to form shapes for eg printer's type, gramophone records, etc
maudlin adj. foolishly or tearfully sentimental or self-pitying, esp when drunk ,
maul v. ~ sb/sth (about) handle sb/sth roughly or brutally
mausoleum n. large, finely built tomb
mauve adj. n pale purple colour
maverick n. unbranded calf
mawkish adj. sentimental in a feeble or sickly way
maxim n. saying that expresses a general truth or rule of conduct, eg `Waste not, want not' ,
mayhem n. violent disorder or confusion; havoc
meager deficient in quality or quantity
mealymouthed hesitant to state facts or opinions simply and directly as from e.g. timidity or hypocrisy
meander v. follow a winding course, flowing slowly
meddlesome adj. fond of or in the habit of meddling
mediate v. ~ act as a peacemaker or go-between for two or more people, groups, etc who disagree
mediocre adj. not very good; second-rate
meditation n. deep thought, esp about spiritual matters
medium n. (pl usu media) means by which sth is expressed or communicated
medley n. piece of music made up of passages from other musical works
meek adj. humble and obedient; submissive
megalomania n. form of madness in which a person has an exaggerated view of his own importance, power, etc
melancholy n. deep sadness which lasts for some time; depression ;
melee n. confusedstruggle; confused crowd of people
mellifluous adj. sweet-sounding; (almost) musical
memento n. thing given, bought, etc and kept as a reminder (of a person, a place or an event)
memoir n. written record of events, usu based on personal knowledge
memorial n. ~ monument, plaque, ceremony, etc that reminds people of an event or a person
memorialize commemorate
menace n. threatening quality, tone, feeling, etc
menagerie n. collection of wild animals in captivity, esp in a travelling circus or for exhibition
mendacious adj. untruthful; lying
mendicant n, adj (person) getting a living by begging
menial adj. (of work) suitable to be done by servants; unskilled
mentor n. experienced and trusted adviser of an inexperienced person
mercantile adj. of trade and commerce; of merchants ;
mercenary adj. interested only in making money, etc; done from this motive
mercurial adj. (of people or their moods, etc) often changing
meretricious adj. apparently attractive but in fact valueless
merger n. joining together (esp two commercial companies)
merit n. quality of deserving praise or reward; worth; excellence
mesmerize hypnotize
metallurgical [ metallurgy: ] the scientific study of the extraction, refining, alloying, and fabrication of metals and of their structure and properties
metamorphosis n. (fml) change of form or nature, eg by natural growth or development
metaphor n. use of a word or phrase to indicate sth different from (though related in some way to) the literal meaning, as in `I'll make him eat his words' or `She has a heart of stone' I'll make him eat his wordsShe has a heart of stone
metaphysical adj. of metaphysics
mete v. mete sth out (to sb) (fml ) give or administer (punishment, rewards, etc)
meteoric adj. of meteors
meter n. device that measures the volume of gas, water, etc passing through it, time passing, electrical current, distance, etc
methodical adj. done in an orderly, logical way
meticulous adj. ~ giving or showing great precision and care; very attentive to detail
metrical adj. of or composed in verse, not prose
metropolis n. chief city of a region or country; capital
mettle n. quality of endurance or courage, esp in people or horses
miasma n. (fml ) unhealthy or unpleasant mist, etc
microcosm n. thing or being regarded as representing the universe, or mankind, on a small scale; miniature representation
migrant n, adj person or animal who migrates
migratory adj. having or of the habit of migrating
milieu n. (usu sing ) social surroundings; environment
militant adj. using force or strong pressure, or supporting their use, to achieve one's aims
militate v. ~ against sth (of evidence, facts, etc) have great force or influence to prevent sth
militia n. force of civilians who are trained as soldiers and reinforce the regular army in the internal defence of the country in an emergency
millennium n. period of 1000 years
millinery n. (trimmings for) women's hats
mime n. (in the theatre, etc) use of only facial expressions and gestures to tell a story
mimicry n. mimicking
minatory adj. threatening
mincing adj. affected
mingle v. ~ with sth/~ (together) form a mixture with sth; combine
miniature n. very small detailed painting, usu of a person
minion n. (derog or joc ) subordinate or assistant, esp one who tries to win favour by obeying a superior slavishly
minuscule adj. very small; tiny ;
minute n. one sixtieth part of an hour, equal to 60 seconds , 60
minutiae n. very small or unimportant details
mirage n. optical illusion caused by hot air conditions, esp that of a sheet of water seeming to appear in the desert or on a hot road
mire n. swampy ground or bog; soft deep mud
mirth n. merriment orhappiness; laughter
misadventure n. (piece of) bad luck; misfortune
misanthrope a person who hates or distrusts mankind
misapprehension n. under a misappre`hension not understanding correctly
miscellaneous adj. of various kinds
miscellany n. ~ varied collection of items
mischance n. (piece of) bad luck
mischief n. behaviour that is annoying or does slight damage, but is not malicious (used esp as in the expressions shown)
misconduct n. (esp law ) improper behaviour, esp of a sexual or professional kind
misconstrue v. get a wrong idea of or misinterpret (sb's words, acts, etc)
miscreant n. villain; wrongdoer ;
misdemeanor a crime less serious than a felony
miserly adj. like a miser; mean or selfish
misgivings [ misgiving: ] a feeling of uncertainty, apprehension, or doub
mishap n. unlucky accident(usu not serious)
misnomer n. wrong use of a name, word or description
misogamy hatred of marriage
misogynist n. person who hates women
missile n. object or weapon that is thrown or fired at a target
missive n. letter, esp a long or official one
mite n. very small or modest contribution or offering
mitigate v. make (sth) less severe, violent or painful; moderate
mnemonic adj. of or designed to help the memory
mobile adj. that can move or be moved easily and quickly from place to place
mock v. ~ makefun of (sb/sth), esp by mimicking him/it contemptuously; ridicule
mode n. ~ (fml ) way or manner in which sth is done
modicum n. ~ small or moderate amount of sth
modish adj. fashionable
modulate v. vary the strength, volume or pitch of
modulation toning down; changing from one key to another
mogul n. very rich, important or influential person
molecule n. smallest unit into which a substance can be divided without a change in its chemical nature
mollify v. lessen the anger of (sb); make calmer; soothe
mollycoddle v. treat (sb) with too much kindness and protection; pamper
molt the act or process of sheding hair, feathers, shell, horns, or an outer layer periodically; specifically :ECDYSIS
molten adj. melted or made liquid by heating to a very high temperature
momentous adj. very important; serious
momentum n. force that increases the rate of development of a process; impetus
monarchy n. system of government by a monarch
monastic adj. of or relating to monks or monasteries
monetary adj. of money or currency
mongrel n. dog of mixed breed
monochromatic having or consisting of one color or hue
monochrome adj. having or using images in black, white and shades of grey; black and white
monogram n. two or more letterscombined in one design and marked on handkerchiefs, notepaper, etc ,
monograph n. detailed scholarly study of one subject
monolithic adj. consisting of one or more monoliths
monotheism n. belief that there is only one God
monotony n. state of being monotonous; lack of variety that causes weariness and boredom
monumental adj. of, related to or serving as a monument
moodiness n.
moratorium n. ~ (on sth) temporary stopping of an activity, esp by official agreement
morbid adj. having or showing an interest in gloomy or unpleasant things, esp disease or death
mordant adj. very sarcastic; biting
mores n. customs or conventions considered typical of or essential to a group or communtiy
morgue n. building in which dead bodies are kept before being buried or cremated; mortuary ;
moribund adj. at the point of death; about to come to an end
morose adj. very unhappy, bad-tempered and silent; sullen
mortar n. mixture of lime or cement, sand and water, used to hold bricks, stones, etc together in building
mortician n. =undertaker
mortify v. cause (sb) to be very ashamed or embarrassed
mosaic n. picture or pattern made by placing together small pieces of glass, stone, etc of different colours
mote n. small particle, usu of dust; speck ;
motif n. decorative design or pattern
motility ability to move spontaneously and independently
motley adj. of many different types of people or things
mottled adj. marked with patches of different colours without a regular pattern
motto n. short sentence or phrase chosen and used as a guide or rule of behaviour or as an expression of the aims or ideals of a family, a country, an institution, etc
mountebank n. person who tries to cheat others by clever talk; swindler
muddle v. ~ sth (up) put sth into disorder; mix sth up
muggy adj. (of weather) oppressively warm and damp
mulct defraud a person of something; fine
multifarious adj. of many different kinds; having great variety
multiform having many forms
multilingual adj. speaking or using many languages
multiplicity n. ~ of sth large number or great variety of things
mundane adj. ordinary and typically unexciting
munificent adj. extremely generous; (of sth given) large in amount or splendid in quality
mural n. painting done on a wall
murky adj. unpleasantly dark; gloomy
murmur n. low continuous indistinct sound
muse n. the Muses the nine goddesses, daughters of Zeus or Jupiter, who protected and encouraged poetry, music, dancing, history and other branches of art and literature ,
musky adj. (smelling) like musk
muster n. assembly or gathering of people or things, esp for review or inspection
musty adj. smelling or tasting stale, mouldy and damp
mutable adj. liable to change; likely to change ;
mute adj. silent; making no sound
muted (of a sound or colour) softened
mutilate v. injure, damage or disfigure by breaking, tearing or cutting off a necessary part
mutinous adj. guilty of mutiny; refusing to obey; rebellious
mutter v. ~ (to sb) (about sth) speak or say (sth) in a low voice that is hard to hear
myopic adj. short-sighted
myriad n. extremely large number
mystic adj. of hidden meaning or spiritual power, esp in religion