Last Night

last nightPreparing for death is a sensitive topic, especially the question of changing the law to allow euthanasia for those for whom the last days of life are becoming unbearable. James Salter‘s short story “Last Night” was built around this theme. As the plot develops we see that the main character is not the loyal and loving husband that we first thought. He turns out to be a heartless adulterer who rapes his mistress as his wife lies upstairs on her death bed. However, he is in for a surprise the next morning as the title of the story takes on a new meaning.

English Learner Vocabulary Help

The words and expressions in our Pre-Intermediate level Simplified English story which are not in our 1200 word list are: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and .

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ancient(adj: ancient) 1. Of great age; very old. 2. Of, coming from, or belonging to a time that was long ago in the past. 3000

blouse(n: blouse pl blouses) An often formal shirt-like piece of clothing for women and girls. She wore a blouse and a skirt to work. 5000

brassiere(n: brassiere pl brassieres; informal bra pl bras) A piece of clothing that is worn by women under other clothes to cover and support the breasts. 5000

breast(n: breast pl breasts) Either one of the two soft parts on a woman's chest that produce milk when she has a baby. 3000

breath(n: breath pl breaths) The air that you take into your lungs and send out from your lungs. His breath smells like garlic. 3000
(idiom: hold your breath) To stop breathing for a short time, such as when you dive into water.
(idiom: take a deep breath) To take a lot of air into your lungs.

breathe(v: breathe, breathes, breathed, breathing) To move air into and out of your lungs; to inhale and exhale. He was breathing hard from running.
(phrasal verb: breathe deeply) To take a lot of air into your lungs. 3000

darling(adj: darling) Greatly loved. This is my darling daughter, Sara.
(n: darling pl darlings) A person you love very much. She was mother's little darling. Often used as a form of address to someone you love: How was your day, darling? 4000

especially(adv: especially) 1. To a great extent, very much; more than usually. He wasn't an especially clever person. 2. Used to single out one person, thing, or situation over all others; particularly. The soup was especially delicious. 1000

hurry(v: hurry, hurries, hurried, hurrying) To [cause to] to move, act, or go quickly. I must hurry or I will be late for the train. 2000

imagine(v: imagine, imagines, imagined, imagining) 1. To form a picture of something in your mind that is not there or not real. I can imagine how you felt. 2. To see or hear etc something which is not true or does not exist. There is no-one there. You're just imagining things! 3. To think; to suppose. I imagine that he will be late. 1000

intelligent(adj: intelligent) Clever; having or showing the ability to easily learn or understand things or to deal with new or difficult situations. She asked some intelligent questions. He's a hard worker but he's not very intelligent. 2000

jewelry(n: jewelry, noncount; British jewellery) Decorative objects [rings, bracelets, necklaces, earrings, etc.] that people wear on their body.
(n: jeweler pl jewelers; British jeweller) A person that makes, repairs, or sells jewelry. 3000

lipstick(n: lipstick pl lipsticks) A type of make-up that is spread on the lips and that comes in the form of a stick. She was wearing bright red lipstick. 5000

liquid(n: liquid pl liquids) A substance that is able to flow freely; fluid, not solid but not a gas. Water and milk are liquids. 3000

lung(n: lung pl lungs) Either one of the two organs that people and animals use to breathe air. He filled his lungs with the clean, fresh air. She shouted at the top of her lungs. [=she shouted as loudly as possible] 3000

make-up(n: make-up or makeup, noncount) Substances [such as lipstick or powder] used to make someone's face look more attractive. She put on some makeup before the party. 13000

memory(n: memory pl memories) Something from the past that is remembered. 2000

necklace(n: necklace pl necklaces) A piece of jewelry that is worn around your neck. 6000

nervous(adj: nervous) Having or showing feelings of being worried and afraid about what might happen.
(adv: nervously) In a nervous way. 3000

nightgown(n: nightgown pl nightgowns) A loose dress that is worn in bed, especially by women and girls; also called a nightdress. 13000

pour(v: pour, pours, poured, pouring) 1. To [cause to] flow in a steady stream. She poured the milk into a bowl. Water poured down the wall. People were pouring out of the factory. 2. [only with 'it' as subject] To rain heavily. It was pouring this morning. 2000

relief(n: relief, noncount) 1. A pleasant and relaxed feeling that someone has when something unpleasant stops or does not happen. Much to everyone's relief, the airplane landed without any problems. 2. The removal or reducing of something that is painful or unpleasant. Exercise is an excellent source of stress relief. 2000

rug(n: rug pl rugs) A piece of thick, heavy material smaller than a carpet that is used to cover a section of a floor. Take off your shoes so you don't make the rug dirty. 4000

shake your head(idiom: shake your head) To turn your head from side to side as a way of answering “no” or of showing disagreement or that you will not do something.

sigh(v: sigh, sighs, sighed, sighing) To take in and let out a long, loud breath in a way that shows you are bored, disappointed, unhappy, relieved, etc. 4000

silence(n: silence, noncount) 1. A period of time when there is no sound. The teacher asked for silence in the room. I find it hard to sleep unless there is complete silence.
(adj: silent) Used to describe someone or something that is not making noise.
(adv: silently) In a silent way. 3000

stain(n: stain pl stains) A mark made on a surface, a piece of clothing, etc., that is very hard or impossible to remove. She has an ink stain on her shirt. (คราบ) 3000

syringe(n: syringe pl syringes) A medical instrument used to inject fluids into the body or draw them from it, sometimes having a needle for giving injections. (กระบอกฉีด; เข็มฉีดยา) 7000

translate(v: translate, translates, translated, translating) To change words from one language into another language. He translated the book from French into English. (แปล) 3000
(n: translator pl translators) A person who translates. (นักแปล)

uterus(n: uterus pl uteri or uteruses) The organ in women and some female animals in which babies develop before birth; the womb. (มดลูก) 11000

vein(n: vein pl veins) Any one of the tubes that carry blood from different parts of the body back to the heart. (เส้นเลือดดำ) 5000

vodka(n: vodka, noncount) A strong, clear alcoholic drink that is originally from Russia. (เหล้าวอดก้า) 6000

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