Last Night

last nightToday’s story is a tribute to author James Salter who died three days ago. Preparing 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. 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.

Pre-Intermediate Vocabulary Help

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

Intermediate Vocabulary Help

The words and expressions in our Intermediate level Simplified English story which are not in our 1800 word list are: , , blouse, brassiere, , , , , darling, , , , , , jewelry, lipstick, lung, make-up, , nightgown, , relief, , , sigh, , , stain, , , syringe, , , uterus, vein, and vodka.

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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. (รีบ) 2000

imagine(v: imagine, imagines, imagined, imagining) To form a picture of something in your mind that is not there or not real. (จินตนาการ)
(n: imagination pl imaginations) 1. The ability to form a picture in your mind of something that you have not seen or experienced; the ability to think of new things. You can find a solution if you use a little imagination. 2. Something that only exists or happens in your mind. Is it just my imagination, or is it getting warm in here? 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. (คม; ฉลาด) 2000

jewelry(n: jewelry, noncount; British jewellery) Decorative objects (rings, bracelets, necklaces, earrings, etc.) that people wear on their body. (เครื่องเพชรพลอย)
(n: jeweler pl jewelers; British jeweller) A person that makes, repairs, or sells jewelry. (คนขายเพชรพลอย) 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. (ลิปสติก) 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. (ของเหลว) 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] (ปอด) 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. (เครื่องสำอาง) 13000

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

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

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

nightgown(n: nightgown pl nightgowns) A loose dress that is worn in bed, especially by women and girls; also called a nightdress. (ชุดนอน) 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. (เท) 2. [only with 'it' as subject] To rain heavily. It was pouring this morning. (ฝนตกหนัก) 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. (การผ่อนคลาย) 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. (พรม) 4000

shake your head(v: shake, shakes, shook, shaken, shaking 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. (ส่ายหัว)

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. (ถอนหายใจ) 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. (ความเงียบ)
(adj: silent) Used to describe someone or something that is not making noise. (เงียบ)
(adv: silently) In a silent way. (อย่างเงียบ ๆ) 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

bare(adj: bare, barer, barest) 1. Not having a covering. bare feet; bare floors; bare skin 2. Empty The cupboard was bare. 3. Worn thin. The carpet is a bit bare. 3000

barely(adv: barely) By a very little; only just; almost not. Used to say that something was almost not possible or almost did not happen. 3000

cabinet(n: cabinet pl cabinets) A piece of furniture used for storing things that has doors and shelves and sometimes drawers. 2000

closet(n: closet, pl closets) A usually small room that is used for storing things (such as clothing, towels, or dishes). The sheets and blankets are in the hall closet. 3000

confuse(v: confuse, confuses, confused, confusing) To make someone uncertain or unable to understand something.
(n: confusion pl confusions) The feeling that you have when you do not understand what is happening, what is expected, etc.
(adj: confusing) Difficult to understand; not clear. 2000

(n: crack pl cracks) 1. A split or break in something that creates lines in its surface but does not separate it into pieces. (รอยแตก) 2. A sudden loud, sharp sound, such as when ice breaks or lightning strikes. (เสียงแตกเปรี้ยง)
(v: crack, cracks, cracked, cracking) 1. To make or cause a crack in something. The mirror cracked when she dropped it. (แตกร้าว) 2. To hit or press (something) so hard that it breaks apart or opens suddenly. He cracked open the eggs. (กะเทาะออก) 3. [of a voice] To change sharply in tone or pitch, especially because of strong emotion. Her voice cracked as she told them about the accident. 2000

cracked cup cracking eggs

enormous(adj: enormous) Very great in size or amount; huge. They live in an enormous house. 2000

farewell(n: farewell pl farewells) 1. Something that you say to a person who is leaving; goodbye. She wished me farewell. 2. An act of leaving. I will take my farewell of this place tomorrow.
(adj: farewell) Done when someone is leaving, ending a career, etc. A farewell concert/dinner. 6000

fold(v: fold, folds, folded, folding) To bend one part of something such as cloth, paper etc. over or against another part. 3000
To fold your arms or hands means to put one arm or hand over the other arm or hand in a way that keeps them together.

inject(v: inject, injects, injected, injecting) To force a liquid medicine or drug into someone or something by using a special needle. The medicine is injected directly into the muscle. (ฉีดยา) 3000

jam(n: jam pl jams) A sweet food made of fruit and sugar thickened by boiling. A jar of strawberry jam. (แยม) 2000

meet(v: murmur, murmurs, murmured, murmuring) 1. To say (something) in a quiet and soft voice. He murmured something about having to get home. (บ่นพึมพำ)
(n: singular) A quiet, continuous sound, such as that of running water or low voices. There was a low murmur among the crowd. (เสียงพึมพำ) 7000

razor(n: razor pl razors) A tool or device with a sharp edge that is used to shave or cut hair from the face, body, or head. (มีดโกน) 5000

robot(n: robot pl robots) A machine that can do the work of a person and that works automatically or is controlled by a computer. The cars are put together by robots. (หุ่นยนต์)
(adj: robotic) Of or relating to robots. A robotic arm was used to mix the chemicals. 6000

saucer(n: saucer pl saucers) A small, round dish that you put a cup on. (จานรอง) 6000

sob(v: sob, sobs, sobbed, sobbing) 1. To cry noisily while taking in short, sudden breaths. (สะอื้นสะอื้น) 2. To say something while doing this. (ส่งเสียงร่ำไห้) 7000

sociable(adj: sociable) Liking to be with and talk to other people. They are sociable people who enjoy having parties. (ชอบ สังคม) 4000

stare(v: stare, stares, stared, staring) To look at someone or something directly for a long time without moving your eyes, often with eyes wide open. She was staring out the window. (จ้องมอง) 3000
To 'stare' can suggest looking at someone or something in a rude way because you think they are strange or shocking. Don't stare at people, it's not polite. A word with a similar meaning, 'gaze' suggests looking steadily at someone or something while being deep in thought. She gazed lovingly into his eyes.

strawberry(n: strawberry pl strawberries) A small, soft, juicy red fruit that grows on a low plant with white flowers. (ผลสตรอเบอรี่) 5000

talkative(adj: talkative) Describes someone who talks a lot or enjoys having conversations with people. (ช่างพูด) 9000

underwear(n: underwear, noncount) Clothing that is worn next to your skin and under other clothing. You should pack a change of underwear. (ชุดชั้นใน) 5000

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