C calumny A statement about someone that is not true and is intended to damage the reputation of that person capacious Having a lot of space and able to contain a lot a capacious pocket/handbag caper To run and jump about in an energetic, happy way capitulate To accept military defeat Their forces capitulated five hours after the bombardment of the city began. caprice A sudden and usually silly wish to have or do something, or a sudden and silly change of mind or behaviour cardinal A priest of very high rank in the Roman Catholic Church Cardinals elect and advise the Pope. cataclysm An event that causes a lot of destruction, or a sudden, violent change cataract A disease in which an area of someone's eye becomes less clear so that they cannot see clearly, or the area affected in this way cavil To make unreasonable complaints, especially about things that are not important cede To allow someone else to have or own something, especially unwillingly or because you are forced to do so celerity Speed censure strong criticism or disapproval His dishonest behaviour came under severe censure. charlatan A person who pretends to have skills or knowledge that they do not have, especially in medicine cherubic Having a round, attractive face like that of a child a blonde-haired girl with a cherubic face chicanery Dishonest but attractive talk or behavior that is used to deceive people choleric Very angry or easily annoyed churlish Rude, unfriendly, and unpleasant They invited me to dinner and I thought it would be churlish to refuse. circumspect Careful not to take risks cleft An opening or crack, especially in a rock or the ground Eagles often nest in a cleft in the rocks clemency Kindness when giving a punishment The jury passed a verdict of guilty, with an appeal to the judge for clemency. coalesce To combine into a single group or thing The theory is that galaxies coalesced from smaller groupings of stars. cogent Persuasive and well expressed He makes a cogent argument for improving early childhood education. cogent Persuasive and well expressed He makes a cogent argument for improving early childhood education. cogitate To spend time thinking very carefully about a subject commandeer To take possession of or control private property by force or for military use commiserate To express sympathy to someone about some bad luck I began by commiserating with her over the defeat. comport To behave in a particular way She comported herself with great dignity at her husband's funeral. conducive Providing the right conditions for something good to happen or exist A quiet room is a more conducive atmosphere for studying. confound To confuse and very much surprise someone, so that they are unable to explain or deal with a situation conjecture A guess about something based on how it seems and not on proof There's been a lot of conjecture in the media recently about the marriage. contentious Causing or likely to cause disagreement: She has some very contentious views on education. contravene To do something that a law or rule does not allow, or to break a law or rule The company knew its actions contravened international law. contrite Feeling very sorry and guilty for something bad that you have done a contrite apology/expression contrition Feeling very sorry and guilty for something bad that you have done a contrite apology/expression copious In large amounts, or more than enough They drank copious amounts of wine. corpulent Fat a corpulent gentleman corroborate To add proof to an account, statement, idea, etc. with new information Recent research seems to corroborate his theory. counterpart A person or thing that has the same purpose as another one in a different place or organization craven extremely cowardly a craven act of terrorism credence The belief that something is true I'm not prepared to give credence to anonymous complaints. cryptic Mysterious and difficult to understand I got a cryptic text message from Sam. culpable Deserving to be blamed or considered responsible for something bad He was held culpable for all that had happened. cursory Quick and probably not detailed a cursory examination cynical Believing that people are only interested in themselves and are not sincere She has a pretty cynical view of men.