IELTS® Vocabulary List

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Words that start with w
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wart keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wart/ [w.ao1.r.t]

Definition: A small, hard, benign growth on the skin, caused by a virus.

Example sentences:

  • The skin cells in the warts releases thousands of viruses, so close skin-to-skin contact can pass on the infection.

weathering keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/weath-er-ing/ [w.eh1.dh.er0.ih0.ng]

Weathering is the breaking down or dissolving of rocks and minerals on Earth’s surface. Water, ice, acids, salt, and changes in temperature are all agents of weathering.

weigh on keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/weigh on/ [no ipa available]

Weigh on is to be oppressive or disheartening to someone. It is to express sadness. When someone tells you a sad story, it may weigh on your shoulders, meaning to make you sad and not be able to forget it. Anything that weighs on you makes you unhappy. For example, “It really weighed on my mind when I found out her father died.”

Example sentences using “weigh”:

  • The bad news is really weighing on me.
  • I can tell that something is weighing on his mind. (This means that he's worried about something)
  • He's under huge pressure at work and it's really weighing on him.
  • The responsibility of her new job had begun to weigh on her.
  • The high price of property weighs heavily on many businesses.
well-suited keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/well-suit-ed/ [no ipa available]

Definition: to be complementary or appropriate

Example sentences:

  • The experienced principal was well-suited for the job of superintendent of schools.
  • The design of the building is well-suited to its surroundings.

wide-ranging keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wide-rang-ing/ [no ipa available]

Definition: Covering an extensive range:

Example sentences:

  • Members of Parliament hate having this sort of wide-ranging power sneaked past them as much as you do.

winter solstice keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/win-ter sol-stice/ [no ipa available]

The winter solstice is the shortest day of the year. Solstices are opposite on either side of the equator, so the summer solstice in the Northern Hemisphere is the winter solstice in the Southern Hemisphere, and vice versa.

withstand keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/with-stand/ [w.ih0.th.s.t.ae1.n.d]

Definition: resist or confront with resistance

Example sentences:

  • Though not every painting has withstood the test of time, some of the works ended up being quite significant.
  • Building methods in many other developing countries can withstand gravity and wind but have limited resistance against very strong earthquakes.

wreak keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wreak/ [r.iy1.k]

Definition: Cause (a large amount of damage or harm):

Example sentences:

  • The Category 5 storm wreaked havoc, doing more than $20 billion in damage and making it by far the costliest hurricane ever in United States history.

wavelength keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wave-length/ [w.ey1.v.l.eh2.ng.th]

Definition: The distance between successive crests of a wave, especially points in a sound wave or electromagnetic wave:

Example sentences:

  • Unfortunately, Earth's atmosphere blocks almost all wavelengths in the electromagnetic spectrum. The most powerful telescopes in the world, spanning all wavelengths of the electromagnetic spectrum, were retooled and reprogrammed to observe the dying star. Visible light consists of a ‘rainbow’ or spectrum of electromagnetic waves of different wavelengths.

weigh in keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/weigh in/ [no ipa available]

There are two phrases:

  • weigh in on
  • weight in at

If you weigh in on a plan, decision, or discussion, you offer your opinion in a discussion or argument.

Examples sentences:

  • The President's political advisers also weighed in on the plan.
  • Sometimes parents weigh in on disagreements between their children, or sometimes they let them sort it out themselves. 
  • In serious discussions on talk-shows, the producers often get experts to weigh in on an array of subjects.

If someone weighs in at a particular weight, for example before competing in a sports competition, their weight is measured at that amount.  For example, when there is a weigh-in on the day of a boxing match, each competitor is weighed to check their weight before the match.

Example sentence:​

  • The fighter weighed in at 250 pounds.
well-adapted keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/well-adapt-ed/ [no ipa available]

Definition: having been made or adjusted to fit suitably into an environment, situation, etc

Example sentences:

  • Polar bears are well adapted to cold weather.

wetland keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wet-land/ [w.eh1.t.l.ae2.n.d]

Definition: Land consisting of marshes or swamps; saturated land.

Example sentences:

  • Dredging and drying a wetland can create more land for homes, businesses, or agriculture.

widespread keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/wide-spread/ [w.ay1.d.s.p.r.eh1.d]

Something is widespread is common over a wide area or among many people. The preposition “among”, “throughout” and “in” are often used after the word widespread. Here are example sentences:

  • Illiteracy is widespread among the poor.
  • The view that Obama is a Muslim is more widespread among his political opponents than among his backers.
  • Growth will be widespread throughout several occupations in this group.

 

Collocations 

widespread popularity

  • A person such as Oprah, or Gandhi, or Michael Jackson, who has widespread popularity, is loved by many far and wide.
  • The piano blues and jazz of the 1910s and 1920s  didn't find its way into print during the years of its first creation, so it never gained the widespread popularity among amateur and mainstream professional musicians.

widespread disease

  • A widespread disease is one that many people have––the flu epidemic of 1919 was deadly and widespread, killing between 50 and 100 million people in every corner of the world.

widespread opposition

  • There was widespread opposition to the plan.

widespread public interest

  • There is widespread public interest in the election.

 

 

 

withdraw keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/with-draw/ [w.ih0.dh.d.r.ao1]

Definition: Remove or take away (something) from a particular place or position

Example sentences:

  • In fact the smog lifted about 10 years ago, after ageing fleets of cars and buses were withdrawn and industries were removed from the centre.

worthwhile keyboard_arrow_downkeyboard_arrow_up
/worth-while/ [w.er1.th.w.ay1.l]

Definition: Worth the time, money, or effort spent

Example sentences:

  • We thought this would be a fun way of raising some money for a worthwhile cause.

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