The Last Leaf

the last leafThis story by William Porter, better known by the pen-name O. Henry, is one of those rare stories that most readers never forget. Two young women trying to make a name for themselves as artists share an apartment in New York City. One of them becomes very sick, and makes up her mind that she will die when the last leaf falls from an ivy plant growing on the wall opposite her bedroom window. An unlikely figure living in the same building helps to save her. He is an old, alcoholic, failed artist who rarely has a nice word for anyone. However, his act of kindness comes at a very high cost.

English Learner Vocabulary Help

The words and expressions in our Intermediate level Simplified English story which are not in our 1800 word list are: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , and .

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author(n: author pl authors) The person who has written something; someone who writes books or stories, especially a person who has written many books or stories. I enjoyed the book, but I can't remember the name of its author. 3000

bay(n: bay pl bays) A large area of water that is part of an ocean or lake and partly surrounded by land. They went fishing in the bay. 4000

blank(adj: blank, blanker, blankest) Clear, without any writing, marks, or pictures. 2000

canvas(n: canvas pl canvases) 1. A strong, rough cloth that is used to make bags, tents, sails, etc. 2. A specially prepared piece of cloth on which a picture can be painted by an artist. 6000

crazy(adj: crazy, crazier, craziest) 1. Mentally ill; affected with madness or insanity. 2. Very foolish or unreasonable. 3000

fever(n: fever pl fevers) 1. A body temperature that is higher than normal; an illness causing a higher than normal body temperature. 2. A state of excited emotion or activity. There was a fever of activity in the hours before the enemy attacked. 3. A state of great enthusiasm or interest. Every fall the town develops football fever. 5000

funeral(n: funeral pl funerals) The ceremony held for a dead person before their body is put in the ground [buried] or burned [cremated]. 3000

(n: hall pl halls) 1. A room or passage at the entrance to a house. 2. A long, narrow passage inside a building with doors that lead to rooms on each side; also called a hallway or corridor 1000

entrance hall hallway

illustrate(v: illustrate, illustrates, illustrated, illustrating) 1. To provide (a book, lecture etc) with pictures, diagrams etc. 2. To make the meaning of something that you say or write clearer by providing an example. 3000
(n: illustration pl illustrations) A picture, diagram or example that serves to make something easier to understand.

ivy(n: ivy pl ivies) A type of climbing plant with small shiny leaves that often grows up trees and walls. The fence was covered with ivy. 4000

knit(v: knit, knits, knitted, knitting) To to make (a piece of clothing) from wool,etc. by using long needles or a special machine. 4000

lantern(n: lantern pl lanterns) A light for outdoors that has a glass covering to protect it from the wind, rain, etc. and can be carried by a handle. 8000

masterpiece(n: masterpiece pl masterpieces) A great book, painting, piece of music, movie, etc; one of the best examples of creative or artistic work of its kind. 7000

maze(n: maze pl mazes) A complicated set of connected paths, often surrounded by walls or hedges, from which it is difficult to find the way out. 8000

nonsense(n: nonsense, noncount) Foolishness; words or ideas that are foolish or untrue. 3000

pneumonia(n: pneumonia, noncount) A serious disease that affects the lungs and makes it difficult to breathe. 5000

pose(v: pose, poses, posed, posing) To stand, sit, or lie down in a particular position as a model for a photograph, painting, etc. Everyone posed for the group photo. 3000

statue(n: statue pl statues) A figure usually of a person or animal that is made from stone, metal, etc. (รูปปั้น) 6000

stir(v: stir, stirs, stirred, stirring) To mix (something) by making circular movements in it with a spoon or similar object. He put milk and sugar into his coffee and stirred it. (คนให้เข้ากัน) 3000

streetcar(n: streetcar pl streetcars) A vehicle that travels on roads on metal tracks and is used for carrying passengers. (ถนนรถ)

tune(n: tune pl tunes) A series of musical notes that produce a pleasing sound when played, sung, whistled, etc. (ทำนอง) 2000

vine(n: vine pl vines) A plant that has very long stems and that grows along the ground or up and around something such as a wall or tree. (เถาวัลย์) 6000

whisper(n: whisper pl whispers) A very quiet sound, especially something said. (การกระซิบ; การส่งเสียงเบา ๆ)
(v: whisper, whispers, whispered, whispering) To speak or say something very softly. (กระซิบ) 5000

police whistlinggirl whistling(n: whistle pl whistles) A device through which air or steam is forced to produce a very high and loud sound. The policeman blew his whistle. (นกหวีด)
(v: whistle, whistles, whistled, whistling) 1. To produce a very high, often musical, sound by forcing air through your lips or teeth. He whistled a happy tune. (ผิวปาก) 2. To make such a sound with a whistle or by passing quickly through the air. The bullet whistled past his head. (ทำให้เกิดเสียงหวีดหวิว) 3. (of the wind) To blow with such a sound. (พัดให้เกิดเสียงหวีดหวิว) 3000

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