20 Advanced English Verbs For Speaking And Writing

Learn 20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing.

This English lesson is useful for students studying for IELTS, TOEFL, CAE, and other English proficiency exams, as well as those looking to improve their written and spoken English. Impress your IELTS examination by using these advanced English verbs.

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List of English verbs

20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing

In today’s English lesson, we’re going to explore 20 advanced verbs that can make your English skills even better.

These words will help you both when you’re speaking and when you’re writing. Learning these advanced English verbs will develop both your listening comprehension as well as your fluency in speaking and writing. These advanced words will help you build your vocabulary so that you can be more specific when expressing your thoughts, opinions, and ideas. 

I’ll describe each verb briefly and provide a few examples to show you how to use them. So, let’s start!


Meaning: (formal) to cancel, to officially end or eliminate something (acts, laws, etc)


Slavery was abolished in the USA with the ratification of the 13th Amendment in 1865.

Many countries have abolished the death penalty in favour of more humane alternatives.


Meaning: to claim or state something without providing concrete evidence


We allege that someone broke into the supermarket and stole the contents of the safe.

It is alleged that he killed a man in a crime of passion.


Meaning: to awaken a feeling, emotion, or interest in sb or sth; to evoke


His odd behaviour aroused the suspicion of his neighbours.

A visit to the Greek islands aroused his interest in international travel.


Meaning: talk excessively about your possessions or achievements


He boasted for weeks about the big bonus his boss gave him, and everybody was really jealous.

Children in the playground always boast about whose father has the biggest car.


Meaning: to tightly close or grip something, typically with force or determination


When I took my young son to the dentist first time, he clenched his teeth, and the dentist couldn’t examine them.

He clenched his fist in anger and was about to hit his opponent.

20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing

20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing. Improve English speaking skills. Improve English speaking skills. Upgrade your vocabulary. English grammar rules. Improve English speaking. Advanced English lessons on Zoom and Skype. Improve English speaking and writing skills. #learnenglish


Meaning: to grasp or hold onto something tightly, often with a firm grip, especially in a moment of urgency, fear, or need


He clutched the young girl’s hand so she wouldn’t run onto the road and get knocked over by a car.

The fireman ran out from the burning building clutching the dog in his arms.


Meaning: to pack a lot of items tightly into a limited space


He crammed as many clothes as possible into his cabin bag to avoid paying Ryanair’s baggage fees.

He crammed three chocolates into his mouth, so no one else could get one.


Meaning: to create, invent, or come up with a plan, idea, or method, typically to solve a problem or achieve a specific goal


He devised a clever way to increase sales in the company.

Who is going to devise a plan for the launch of our new product?


Meaning: to live in a particular place or to think about something for a long time


He likes to dwell in the countryside away from the big city.

He’s been dwelling on the past too long.


Meaning: to completely eliminate or get rid of something, typically a problem, disease, or undesirable condition


The enemies were eradicated after days of fighting.

Health organisations in many countries work hard to eradicate key diseases.

They carry out inoculations and vaccinations with the goal of eradicating measles from those countries.

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Meaning: to develop or change gradually over time, often through a process of growth, adaptation, or transformation, resulting in something more advanced or complex


He has evolved into a handsome young man over time.

The business has evolved over twenty years and is now the leading provider of those services.


Meaning: to handle something clumsily or awkwardly, often resulting in mistakes or a lack of coordination


While trying to use the new mouse, he fumbled around and made many mistakes in his emails.

She fumbled in her handbag trying to find her car keys.


Meaning: to frighten someone into doing something we want them to do


His boss always intimidated him. He used to stand over him until he finished the work.

Don’t be intimidated by his voice. He is really a kind and gentle person.


Meaning: to get rid of something, often used in the context of ships and planes


The plane circled the airport and jettisoned extra fuel before making an emergency landing.

The cruise ship jettisons wastewater into the ocean as it travels from one continent to another.


Meaning: to think deeply and carefully about something


He pondered his future over a long slow glass of wine.

She pondered his proposal over the weekend. She was not sure whether he was Mr Right.

20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing

20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing. Improve English speaking skills. Improve English speaking skills. Upgrade your vocabulary. English grammar rules. Improve English speaking. Advanced English lessons on Zoom and Skype. Improve English speaking and writing skills. #learnenglish


Meaning: to stimulate, encourage, or provoke a response, action, or thought


He prompted me that the meeting was going to take place in an hour’s time. Just in case I had forgotten.

I struggled to find the correct answer, but the teacher was able to prompt me, and I worked it out in the end.


Meaning: (formal) to cancel or revoke a law or rule


The outdated law allowing the public to graze their cattle on the city square was repealed.

The government have been approached by citizens’ representatives to repeal many outdated laws relating to women.


Meaning: to cancel or withdraw something previously granted or established


Johnny’s uncle initially named him the sole beneficiary but later revoked it due to changing circumstances.

The police had to revoke his driving license due to multiple traffic violations.


Meaning: (informal) to argue or complain about small, unimportant things


My only quibble was the distance I had to walk to the restaurant for breakfast.

They’re always quibbling about the smallest detail on the bill.

to startle

Meaning: to suddenly surprise or frighten someone


When the bird flew and hit my window I was startled as I was sleeping in the chair.

When I returned home early from work, I startled a burglar trying to break into my house.

Okay there you have it: 20 advanced English verbs for speaking and writing. 

These verbs can be quite helpful in expanding your vocabulary in English. I encourage you to select a few, practice using them, and incorporate them into your own sentences. As usual, if you need help, additional examples, or further information, please don’t hesitate to contact me at englishlessonviaskype.com

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more information

For more information on English grammar rules, English collocations and English idioms, check out the links below:

English expressions with GET

Phrasal Verbs with OFF

You can always study English advanced level at Learning English with the BBC and British Council Learn English.

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