The Great Gatsby Vocabulary Journal

Supercilious Quote- “Now he was a sturdy straw-haired man of 30 with a rather hard mouth and a supercilious manner”(Fitzgerald 7).Definition-behaving or looking as though one thinks one is superior to others.
Intimation Quote- “But I didn’t call to him, for he gave a sudden intimation that he was content to be alone-he stretched out his arms toward the dark water in a curious way, and, far as I was from him, I could have sworn he was trembling. Involuntarily I glanced seaward-and distinguished nothing except a single green light, minute and far away, that might have been the end of a dock”(Fitzgerald 20).Definition- an indication or hint.
Contiguous Quote- “The only building in sight was a small block of yellow brick sitting on the edge of the waste land, a sort of compact Main Street ministering to it, and contiguous to absolutely nothing”(Fitzgerald 29).Definition-sharing a common border; touching.
Languid Quote- “His wife was shrill, languid, handsome, and horrible”(Fitzgerald 34).Definition- Displaying or having a disinclination for physical exertion or effort; slow and relaxed.
Vacuous Quote- “A celebrated tenor had sung in Italian, and a notorious contralto had sung in jazz, and between the numbers people were doing “stunts” all over the garden, while happy, vacuous bursts of laughter rose toward the summer sky “(Fitzgerald 51).Definition-having or showing a lack of thought or intelligence; mindless.
Turbulence Quote- “I had no sight into Daisy’s heart, but i felt that Tom would drift on forever seeking, a little wistfully, for the dramatic turbulence of some irrecoverable football game”(Fitzgerald 6).Definition-violent or unsteady movement of air or water, or of some other fluid.
Insincerity Quote- “I felt the basic insincerity of what she had said”(Fitzgerald 22).Definition-not sincere : hypocritical
impenetrable Quote- “Occasionally a line of grey cars crawls along an invisible track, gives out a ghastly creak and comes to rest, and immediately the ash-grey men swarm up with leaden spades and stir up an impenetrable cloud which screens their obscure operations from your sight”(Fitzgerald 27).Definition-impossible to pass through or enter.
effeminate Quote- “Not even the effeminate swank of his riding clothes could hide the enormous power of that body he seemed to fill those glistening boots until he strained the top lacing and you could see a great pack of muscle shifting when his shoulder moved under his thin coat”(Fitzgerald 11).Definition-(of a man) having or showing characteristics regarded as typical of a woman; unmanly.
decencies Quote- “I am still afraid of missing something if I forget that, as my father snobbishly suggested and I snobbishly repeat, a sense of the fundamental decencies is parceled out unequally at birth”(Fitzgerald 6).Definition-behavior that conforms to accepted standards of morality or respectability.
constrained Quote- “When he was gone I turned immediately to Jordan contained to assure her of my surprise”(Fitzgerald 53).Definition-severely restrict the scope, extent, or activity of.
indignant Quote- “The hall was at present occupied by two deplorably sober men and their highly indignant wives”(Fitzgerald 56).Definition-feeling or showing anger or annoyance at what is perceived as unfair treatment.
quavering Quote- “Whenever there was a pause in the song she filled it with grasping broken sobs and then took up the lyric again in a quavering soprano”(Fitzgerald 56).Definition-(of a person’s voice) shake or tremble in speaking, typically through nervousness or emotion.
provocation Quote- “We were sitting at a table with a man of about my age and a rowdy little girl who gave way upon the slightest provocation to uncontrollable laughter “(Fitzgerald 51).Definition-action or speech that makes someone annoyed or angry, especially deliberately.
infinitesimal Quote- “After an infinitesimal hesitation he included Daisy with a slight nod and she winked at me again”(Fitzgerald 18).Definition-extremely small.
Somnambulatory Quote- “Gatsby took an arm of each of us and moved forward into the restaurant, whereupon Mr. Wolfshiem swallowed a new sentence he was starting and lapsed into a somnambulatory abstraction”(Fitzgerald 10).Definition-is a wonderful word, and you may recognize the Latin roots: somnus, “sleep,” as in somniferous, “something putting you to sleep,” somnolent, “sleepy, or making you sleepy,” and Sominex, the brand name of a sleeping pill.
Denizen Quote- “This is one of his sentimental days. He’s quite a character around New York-a denizen of Broadway”(Fitzgerald 13).Definition-an inhabitant or occupant of a particular place.
Serf Quote- “Americans, while occasionally willing to be serfs, have always been obstinate about being peasantry”(Fitzgerald 8).Definition-an agricultural laborer bound under the feudal system to work on his lord’s estate.
Nebulous Quote- “He was decently clothed in a sports-shirt open at the necks, sneaker and duck of a nebulous act”(Fitzgerald 100).Definition-in the form of a cloud or haze; hazy.
Debauch Quote- “Florid man with a hard empty face the pioneer debauch”(Fitzgerald 106).Definition-destroy or debase the moral purity of; corrup
Punctilious Quote- “This quality was continuous breaking through his punctilious manner in shop of restlessness”(Fitzgerald 8).Definition-showing great attention to detail or correct behavior.
incredulous Quote- “With an effort I managed to restrain my incredulous laughter”(Fitzgerald 74).Definition-(of a person or their manner) unwilling or unable to believe something.
Luxuriated Quote- “… me with two fine growths of hair which luxuriated in either nostril”(Fitzgerald 74).Definition-enjoy oneself in a luxurious way; take self-indulgent delight
Juxtaposition Quote- “The juxtaposition of these two remakes was starting”(Fitzgerald 75).Definition-the fact of two things being seen or placed close together with contrasting effect.
Indignantly Quote- “Mr. Wolfshiens nor finished at me indignantly”(Fitzgerald 75).Definition-feeling, characterized by, or expressing strong displeasure at something considered unjust, offensive, insulting, or base
unfathomable Quote- “…. rubbing her fingers over his eyes and looking at him unfathomable”(Fitzgerald 82).Definition-incapable of being fully explored or understood.
elongating Quote- “…. for unreal on the shubbery and made their elongating slints upon the roadside wires”(Fitzgerald 86).Definition-make (something) longer, especially unusually so in relation to its width.
satisfactorily Quote- “perhaps my presence made then full more satisfactorily alone”(Fitzgerald 99).Definition-giving or affording satisfaction; fulfilling all demands or requirements
vitality Quote- “not through her own fault but because of the colossal vitality of his illusion”(Fitzgerald 101).Definition-the state of being strong and active; energy.
contemporary Quote- “Contemporary legends such as the underground pipeline to Canada”(Fitzgerald 103).Definition-living or occurring at the same time.
Lapse Quote- “lapsed despairingly into deep heat with a desolate cry”(Fitzgerald 121).Definition-a temporary failure of concentration, memory, or judgment.
Rancor Quote- “Her voice was cold but the rancor was gone from it”(Fitzgerald 139).Definition-bitterness or resentfulness, especially when long-standing.
Humidor Quote- “I found the humidor on an unfamiliar table with two stale dry cigarettes inside”(Fitzgerald 155).Definition-an airtight container for keeping cigars or tobacco moist.
Setee Quote- “The wicker of the settee soaked fashionably as she turned toward him…”(Fitzgerald 157).Definition-a long upholstered seat for more than one person, typically with a back and arms.
Elocution Quote- “practice elocution poise and how to attain it”(Fitzgerald 181).Definition-the skill of clear and expressive speech, especially of distinct pronunciation and articulation.
commensurate Quote- “Face to face for the last time in history with something commensurate to his capacity for wonder “(Fitzgerald 189).Definition-corresponding in size or degree; in proportion.
unutterable Quote- “except the one unutterable fact that it wasn’t true”(Fitzgerald 187).Definition-too great, intense, or awful to describe.
suggestiveness Quote- “summing up the sadness and suggestiveness of life in new tunes”(Fitzgerald 158).Definition- “conveying a hint,”
inexhaustible Quote- “that was the inexhaustible charm that rose and fell in it”(Fitzgerald 127).Definition-(of an amount or supply of something) unable to be used up because existing in abundance.
obligations Quote- “I’m under no obligations to you at all”(Fitzgerald 122).Definition-an act or course of action to which a person is morally or legally bound; a duty or commitment.
expostulation Quote- “The circle closed up again with a running murmur of expostulation”(Fitzgerald 146).Definition- is an expression of protest, not a rant exactly, but often lengthy
pavilions Quote- “We pushed aside curtains that were like pavilions and felt over innumerable feet of dark wall for electric light switcher”(Fitzgerald 154).Definition-a building or similar structure used for a specific purpose, in particular.
presumptuous Quote- “I think he realizes that his presumptuous little flirtation is over”(Fitzgerald 142).Definition-(of a person or their behavior) failing to observe the limits of what is permitted or appropriate.
adventitious Quote- “And the adventitious authority of his voice set key for the newspaper reports that morning”(Fitzgerald 171).Definition-happening or carried on according to chance rather than design or inherent nature.
reluctant Quote- “Gatsby and I in turn leaned down and took the small reluctant hand”(Fitzgerald 123).Definition-unwilling and hesitant; disinclined.

You Might Also Like