Words Matter - Chapter 8
Exercise 1

Copyright © 2003 Laraine Flemming.
General distribution outside the classroom and redistribution are strictly prohibited.

Directions: Below are the ten words from Chapter 8. Each of the ten words is accompanied by three sentences that use a form of the word. Only one of these sentences uses the word correctly, the other two use it incorrectly. Read all three sentences. Then click the button to the left of the sentence that uses the word correctly.

You may change your answers as you see fit. When you are satisfied that all answers are correct, click the "Submit" button at the end of the exercise. You cannot resubmit the exercise after that point.

If a word in a sentence is marked by *, the word is introduced in Words Matter.

Note: If you are using the Internet Explorer as browser, the exercise will only work for version 6 or higher.

Words on Wit and Humor



Opponents of Abraham Lincoln liked to depict him as an ill-mannered buffoon.

No degree of buffoonery will ever convince me buy a sports utility vehicle.

Buffoons of football teams like to paint their faces in the colors of their favorite team.



Because Dan has such a droll and mean disposition, he never gets invited to parties.

Dinner started with a plate of drolleries that were just delicious.

We just got two kittens whose drolleries amuse the whole family.



The boy screamed when he got hit by scathingly hot fat from the grill.

He's a good-natured soul whose scathing humor makes everyone laugh.

Winston Churchill, the former Prime Minister of Britain, had a scathing wit that hurt even his friends at times.



When he lost a leg in an accident, he became a repartee and learned to work without moving around.

The host's quick repartees are a main attraction of the quiz show.

The show is so successful that it is now in its third repartee.



Flippant remarks got more than one politician's spouse into trouble.

The ups and downs of roller coasters are much too flippant for my taste.

When the conversation got into a flippant area, the guest became nervous and gave very guarded answers.



"Fools rush in where angels fear to tread" is a famous epigram by 18th century poet and satirist* Alexander Pope.

To make a good red pasta sauce, you need at least an epigram of ripe tomatoes.

The minister's epigram at the funeral moved many in the audience to tears.



Despite your malapropisms, I'm still determined to go to graduate school.

"Grasping at straws" or "scraping the barrel" are often-heard malapropisms.

In one of his typical malapropisms, Archie Bunker, the star of All in the Family, called the skull-cap worn by some Jews a "yamaha" instead of a "yarmulke."



When Bette Midler is invited to host an event, the audience should expect a zany, over-the-top performance.

No zany could believe that little green men live on Mars.

When he learned about the death of his favorite comedian, he became zany and started to cry.



It's a sad satire of our times that alcohol is involved in so many traffic accidents.

Since its start, Saturday Night Live has produced satires of whoever is the president in office.

I find it satiric when people who refuse to pay taxes are perfectly willing to use government services financed through taxes.



In exposing the flaws of the speech, the editorial went right for the jocular.

The Senator's jocularity has made him a favorite with the media.

It is jocularly said that "a picture is worth a thousand words."

Last change made to this page: February 23, 2004

Words Matter: Additional Exercises