Can you write two sentences each for the words: seize, hoard, termagant, precarious, melancholy, avarice, extort, ostentatious, parsimony, and efface?

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This is an interesting assignment. You have been asked to review a list of vocabulary words and demonstrate your understanding of what the word means and how to relate it to Romanticism in literature and the arts.

Step 1. The first step to completing this assignment is to make sure that you understand the definition of the word itself before placing it in the context of romanticism. A good source is the Merriam-Webster dictionary. For example, Merriam-Webster defines “avarice” as an “excessive or insatiable desire for wealth or gain” or “a strong desire to have or get money.” Merriam-Webster even includes a kids' definition that indicates that avarice is a “strong desire for riches.”

Step 2. Make sure you truly understand what the word means. Look at the synonyms the dictionary provides and see if you could substitute the word for these synonyms in a sentence. Merriam-Webster indicates that “greediness” is a synonym for avarice. Understanding words that can be used in place of your vocabulary word should help you better understand the word itself.

Step 3. Similarly, understanding the word’s antonym —a word with the opposite meaning—is also likely to help you understand the word. Merriam-Webster generally provides examples of opposite words. An antonym for avarice is “generosity.” For example:

She ate all the cupcakes at her birthday party with avarice and left none for her guests.

Use the antonym:

She showed extreme generosity towards the guests at her birthday party, making sure they were served cupcakes before eating one herself.

Step 4. Now that you understand how to use the vocabulary word, connect it to the theme of Romanticism. The Encyclopedia Britannica says that Romanticism is characterized by “a deepened appreciation of the beauties of nature; a general exaltation of emotion over reason and of the senses over intellect.” Romanticism emphasizes emotions over rationale thinking. With this in mind, you can move to the next step to complete the assignment.

Step 5. Think of ways to use the word in connection with literature of the Romantic movement and compose two sentences. We can use another vocabulary word, melancholy, to go through all the steps and make sure you understand how to approach this assignment.

Merriam-Webster defines melancholy as “depression of spirits” and “causing unhappiness.” The kids' definition is “sad sense.” Merriam-Webster provides an example: “I'll be melancholy if you go.” A synonym and antonym, respectively, are “heartbreaking” and “hopeful.”

To use the word melancholy in the context of romantic literature, consider the following sentence:

“She was melancholy seeing the sunset as it made her realize that her time outdoors enjoying the beauty of nature was coming to a close until the next day.”

Step 6 (optional). See if you can find examples of the vocabulary word in any of the books on your reading assignment connected to Romanticism.

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