10 SAT Vocabulary Words in Pictures

And Sample Sentences

I hope this list will be beneficial to you if you are already thinking about and preparing for the verbal section of the SAT. It may perhaps be helpful to intermediate and advanced students studying English as a second or foreign language or those wanting to improve their vocabulary for other reasons. We all learn in different ways, and it might help you remember definitions to have a visual association with the word.

It’s hard to illustrate some more abstract words with a picture alone, but the picture and sample sentence together tell a story.

All vocabulary words and their definitions came from the Barron’s SAT Vocabulary Word flashcards. The sample sentences are my own.

1. Rancor

Photo by Raychan on Unsplash

Rancor — lasting resentment

Mei-li was filled with rancor as she pondered all of the events that had gone wrong in her life lately.

2. Confound

Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash

Confound — throw into confusion or bewilder

Toby was confounded when he discovered his bicycle was not where he had left it.

3. Embellish

Photo by Lou Levit on Unsplash

Embellish — (1) make more beautiful (2) make a story more interesting by adding (generally fictitious) details.

The chessmen were embellished with intricate carvings.

4. Peripheral

Photo by Illumination Marketing on Unsplash

Peripheral — (1) related to the surface or outer part (2) of minor importance

Using his peripheral vision, Jean-Pierre, the French bulldog, watched as the neighbor’s ginger cat, Lola, approached.

5. Inadvertently

Photo from Freestocks on Unsplash

Inadvertently — In a manner exhibiting a lack of attention, unintentionally

While reaching to put the star on the top of the tree, Candace inadvertently knocked her elbow into a ball ornament, causing it to crash to the floor and break.

6. Frugality

Photo from Kevin McCutcheon on Unsplash

Frugality — carefulness in spending money or using resources

Emily was known for her frugality. While friends went out for pizza, she often had a cheap meal of packaged ramen noodles.

7. Obdurate

Photo by Vidar Nordli-Mathison on Unsplash

Obdurate — (1) stubbornly persistent in resisting persuasion (2) unsympathetic

No matter how his young mistress tugged at his leash, the pug remained obdurate, standing and staring at the hot dog stand across the street.

8. Antagonism

Photo by Morning Brew on Unsplash

Antagonism — active resistance, hostility

After the incident, Amber felt such antagonism towards everyone, she unfriended her entire friend list.

9. Emulate

Photo by Rifqi Ali Ridho on Unsplash

Emulate — attempt to equal or outdo, imitate

She tried to emulate the style of her favorite painters.

10. Lavish

Photo by Obi Onyeador on Unsplash

Lavish — occurring or produced in abundance, opulent, luxurious

The host lavished lavish desserts on his guests.

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