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Word: Travail

Travail [Verb]

Sentence: Storytelling has long been a favorite hobby of many of Margaret Atwood’s characters. For some, it’s a way to distance themselves from painful memories while mythologizing mundane triumphs and travails; for others, it’s a means of discovering their own identities, a way of connecting the dots in their lives, of turning random points of light into something resembling a starry constellation. (Source: www.nytimes.com)

Meaning: To engage in work of a painful or laborious nature

How To Remember?

The word “ail” is used to describe when one is feeling ill or feeling pain. The “-ail” of “Travail” should remind you of that. Additionally, “Travail” sounds a lot like “Travel” – a venture requiring effort. So, the word “Travail” should remind you of a difficult journey resulting in pain during the process.

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Picture Credit: forums.ubi.com

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Word: Propitiate

Propitiate [Verb]

Sentence: That story, set on a planet far, far away, depicts a bloody, class-riven society that sacrifices its young to propitiate ancient gods, and a chilling assassination plot involving a blind killer. (Source: www.nytimes.com)

Meaning: Appease or make peace with someone by doing or offering something that pleases him/her

How To Remember? 

The part “-piti-” in the word “Propitiate” should remind you of pity. So, you need pity from a “Pro-“, that is, a professional. You are at his/her mercy. Now a professional can be very hard to please, isn’t it? You would have to mollify him/her. You would have to placate him/her. You would have to propitiate him/her.

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Picture Credit: www.talesbeyondbelief.com

[In many parts of the world, animal sacrifices are made to propitiate the Gods or God – number depending on the religion one is born to or chooses to follow – so as to get a good harvest or weather a calamity.]

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