Word Power: Elevate Your Writing with 10 High-End Words - Part VI


We are back with part six of our series on using advanced vocabulary in writing. This piece delves into the nuances of terms such as fructuous, salubrious, and others, offering suggestions and illustrations to enhance your writing. In order to help the audience memorize all of these terms, a mnemonic device will also be provided at the conclusion. Overall, it is expected that this work will be every bit as fascinating and instructional as the previous ones in the series

Word Power: Elevate Your Writing with 10 High-End Words - Part VI

List of Words

The following words have been discussed:

  1. Captious
  2. Hegemony
  3. Salubrious
  4. Defenestrate
  5. Lagniappe
  6. Blithe
  7. Obstreperous
  8. Emulate
  9. Obdurate
  10. Fructuous


Captious describes someone who is overly critical or eager to find fault, often in a way that is petty or unjustified. A captious person might nitpick or constantly look for flaws, even in trivial matters, displaying a tendency to criticize or argue for the sake of argument rather than to seek truth or understanding.

Example: The captious critic always found fault in even the most acclaimed movies. 


Hegemony refers to the dominance or leadership of one social group, country, or organization over others. It implies not only control but also the ability to influence and shape the actions, beliefs, and practices of others, often through cultural, economic, or political means.

Example: The small country struggled to retain its cultural identity under the hegemony of its powerful neighbor. 


Salubrious describes something that is health-giving or beneficial to health. It is often used to describe an environment, climate, or lifestyle that promotes health and well-being, suggesting a positive influence on physical or mental health.

Example: After moving to the countryside, she enjoyed the salubrious effects of the clean air and tranquility. 


To defenestrate means to throw someone or something out of a window. This term is often used figuratively to describe the act of removing someone or something abruptly or forcefully from a position of power, authority, or prominence.

Example: In a fit of rage, he threatened to defenestrate the computer out of the window. 


Lagniappe refers to a small, extra gift or bonus that is given to a customer by a seller, especially in the context of Southern U.S. culture or the Caribbean. It is an unexpected or additional benefit that is provided as a gesture of goodwill or to enhance customer satisfaction.

Example: The baker added an extra cookie as a lagniappe with her purchase. 


Blithe describes someone who is carefree, cheerful, or unconcerned. It suggests a lighthearted or cheerful attitude that is not weighed down by worries or responsibilities, often implying a sense of happiness or contentment.

Example: His blithe spirit was infectious, making everyone around him feel cheerful. 


Obstreperous describes someone who is noisy, unruly, or difficult to control. It is often used to describe a person or behavior that is loud, disruptive, or defiant, especially in a way that challenges authority or disrupts order.

Example:  The obstreperous child threw a tantrum in the middle of the grocery store. 


Emulate means to imitate or strive to equal or surpass someone or something admired. It involves trying to match or surpass a model or example, often with the aim of achieving similar success, excellence, or recognition.

Example: Many athletes try to emulate the rigorous training regimen of the Olympic champion. 


Obdurate describes someone who is stubbornly resistant to change or persuasion. It suggests a person who is unyielding, inflexible, or hardened in their attitudes, opinions, or actions, often despite attempts to convince or persuade them otherwise.

Example: Despite the clear evidence, he remained obdurate in his belief that he was right. 


Fructuous describes something that is fruitful, productive, or profitable. It implies a result or outcome that is successful, beneficial, or rewarding, often in terms of yielding tangible or valuable results.

Example: The research team’s fructuous efforts led to a breakthrough in cancer treatment. 

Mnemonic Technique

Visualizing the following scenario can help you recall each word based on its place and role in the narrative. 

“In the quaint village of Lexicon, there was a captious old man named Mr. Grumble, known for his knack for finding fault in everything. He lived under the hegemony of the village’s benevolent ruler, Queen Lexine, whose rule brought salubrious prosperity to the land.

One day, Mr. Grumble decided to defenestrate his old belongings, hoping to rid himself of bad memories. Among the villagers, there was a young girl named Hope who always carried a lagniappe of kindness, offering help and smiles wherever she went.

Hope’s blithe nature often clashed with Mr. Grumble’s grouchy demeanor. In the marketplace, the obstreperous sounds of haggling merchants filled the air, but Hope moved through it all with grace, aspiring to emulate the queen’s wisdom and generosity.

The village blacksmith, an obdurate man named Iron Will, refused to change his ways of forging, despite new techniques being introduced. He believed in tradition and the fructuous results of his time-tested methods.

As the story of Lexicon unfolds, each character learns valuable lessons. Mr. Grumble discovers that his captious attitude only brings loneliness, Hope’s lagniappe of kindness earns her friends and happiness, and Iron Will’s obdurate stance is softened by the success of new ideas”. 

Links and Resources for More Words and Phrases

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