In Vocabulary Builder 21 | Cardiff Giant episode, you will learn the words: anecdote, consolidate, counterfeit, docile, dominate, entreat, fallible, fickle, fugitive, grimy, iota, maul, potential, radiant, rural, substantial, tactful, tamper, ultimate, and uncertainty.


anecdote(n.) a short account of an incident in someone’s life
consolidate(v.) to combine, unite; to make solid or firm
counterfeit(n.) an imitation designed to deceive; (adj.) not genuine, fake; (v.) to make an illegal copy
docile(adj.) easily taught, led, or managed; obedient
dominate(v.) to rule over by strength or power, control; to tower over, command due to height
entreat(v.) to beg, implore, ask earnestly
fallible(adj.) capable of being wrong, mistaken, or inaccurate
fickle(adj.) liable to change very rapidly, erratic; marked by a lack of constancy or steadiness, inconsistent
fugitive(n.) one who flees or runs away; (adj.) fleeting, lasting a very short time; wandering; difficult to grasp
grimy(adj.) very dirty, covered with dirt or soot
iota(n.) a very small part or quantity
maul(v.) to beat or knock about, handle roughly; to mangle; (n.) a heavy hammer
potential(adj.) possible, able to happen; (n.) something that can develop or become a reality
radiant(adj.) shining, bright; giving forth light or energy
rural(adj.) relating to farm areas and life in the country
substantial(adj.) large, important; major, significant; prosperous; not imaginary, material
tactful(adj.) skilled in handling difficult situations or people, polite
tamper(v.) to interfere with; to meddle rashly or foolishly with; to handle in a secret and improper way
ultimate(adj.) last, final; most important or extreme; eventual; basic, fundamental
uncertainty(n.) doubt, the state of being unsure

Podcast Episode


Disclaimer: I am using an automatic transcript service as it is not possible for me to do it on my own and I cannot afford human transcription at the moment. The service claims to have about 95% accuracy, which means there will still be some mistakes, so my apologies for having a less than perfect transcript, but I hope I can afford human transcription soon and this problem will be solved. However, the service is pretty good and the transcript will prove to be almost perfect.

Welcome to a new episode from English plus podcast. And in today’s episode, we will talk about the card of giant. We will talk about some words from this story. And of course, don’t forget that you will have 20 words you can learn. If you follow the link you find in the description of the episode, along with the transcript and the downloadable PDF exercises and the interactive exercises you can find on my website.

[00:00:25] So without further ado, Let’s start with our story. Cardiff giant in 1869 near the door town of Cardiff in a rural area of New York state workers digging a well unearth, a giant human light figure. The Cardiff giant as it came to be known was more than 10 feet tall and appeared to be of ancient origin.

[00:00:52] The discovery created a national sensation. Was the Cardiff giant, one of the greatest scientific discoveries of the century, a number of people thought it was. Newspaper reporters called it the eighth wonder of the world, William Newell, who owned a farm on which the discovery was made erected a tent around the giant and charged admission to view it.

[00:01:17] Thousands came then a group of prominent Syracuse, New York business people. So the potential for making even greater profits, they purchased a three fourths interest in the card of giant for $30,000. And moved it to Syracuse where it could attract even larger drew crowds. At this point, some anthropologists began to express uncertainty about the authenticity of the giant.

[00:01:45] Shortly thereafter, it was exposed as a counterfeit, a hoax engineered by George Hall, a tobacco farmer and cigar manufacturer whole had bought a large block of gypsum, a white mineral, and had had two sculptors carved from it. The likeness of a human being. He then attended to every detail to give the statue an aged look when the giant was complete whole and Newell had buried it.

[00:02:15] Holds Cardiff giant was the ultimate American anthropological. Ironically, people still wanted to see the fake. It was moved to Albany and then to New York city it’s water in his attempt to buy the giant, the great promoter PT Barnum had an imitation man made Barnum’s fake was soon drawing, larger crowds than the original.

[00:02:38] Over the years, the Cardiff giant has been displayed by its many owners in 1948. The giant was moved to the farmers’ museum in Cooperstown, New York, where you can still see it today. So that was our story about Cardiff giant. But now let’s focus on the words we want to learn from the story. Let’s start with the very first word and that is rural.

[00:03:03] Are you are a L in the store. We said in 1869 near the town of Cardiff in a rural area of New York state. So we’re talking about a rural area. We’re not talking about the city. Rural places are far away from large towns or cities. So when we talk about a rural area of New York state, we are talking about a place that is not in the city.

[00:03:30] It is in the countryside, a place far away from large towns. And we can use rule as well to talk about the features, which are typical of areas that are far away from large towns or cities. Like we say, rural life or rural way of life. So that was our first word. Now let’s move to the next word potential in the story we said, then a group of prominent Syracuse, New York business people.

[00:03:55] So the potential for making even greater or profits. So they bought a three 14 interest in the card of giant for $30,000. They sold the potential potential is spelled P O T E N T I L. They saw the potential. When we talk about potential, we’re not talking about something you can see now, but something you can see that is going to happen in the future.

[00:04:22] There is a great possibility for this thing to happen. And it’s usually a good thing. We use potential to say that someone or something is capable of developing into the particular kind of person or thing mentioned. Now here, they saw the possible. The potential of great profit. So they bought a three-fourths interest in the card of giant for $30,000.

[00:04:46] So that was our second word potential. Now for our next word, uncertainty, U N C E R T a I N T Y uncertainty. In our story, we said at this point, some anthropologists began to express uncertainty about the authenticity of the giant. The authenticity, how original it is. Is it original? Is it fake? They started to express uncertainty.

[00:05:16] Do you think they were sure about that or they had their doubts when you are certain, when you you’re talking about certain things, you’re talking about sure. Things you’re talking about, things you are confident of, but uncertainty is a state of doubt about the future or about what is the right thing to do.

[00:05:35] In our context, it’s not about the future. It is about the authenticity, the originality of the giant. And they were right, because that is our next word. Shortly thereafter, it was exposed as a counterfeit. Counterfeit is spelled C O U N T E R F E I T. So we see anthropologists who expressed uncertainty about the authenticity of the giant war.

[00:06:04] Right. Because soon thereafter, it was exposed as a counterfeit and counterfeit. Mostly we use it with money, but we can use it with anything else. We can use counterfeit money, goods, or documents. These are not genuine. They’re not original. They’re not real. They’re fake. So counterfeit money, goods or documents are not genuine, but have been made to look exactly like genuine ones in order to deceive people.

[00:06:31] So there’s nothing innocent about counterfeit money, goods, or documents they were made on purpose to deceive people. So here are the Cardiff giant turned out to be a counterfeit was not real. It was fake. And now for our last word for today, and that is ultimate in our story. We said holds card of giant was the ultimate American anthropological hoax, the ultimate U L T I M a T E ultimate.

[00:07:00] And we use ultimate to describe the most important or powerful thing of a particular kind. And we can also use ultimate to describe the most extreme and unpleasant example of a particular thing. Like in our case, but we can also use ultimate to describe the best possible example of a particular thing.

[00:07:18] Well, we’re talking here about a hoax, so it could be the best possible example of a hoax, which is a bad thing. So you could take it anyway, whether it’s the most extreme and unpleasant example of a particular thing or the best possible example of a particular thing, both of them work in this context.

[00:07:36] And that is the meaning of ultimate. So these were our words for today, rural potential uncertainty, counterfeit, and ultimate. And I hope you learned something new in this story about the card of giant, whether you know about it, or do you, you haven’t, this was the ultimate American anthropological hoax.

[00:07:55] Don’t forget that you can find the transcript of this episode in the link. I’m going to leave you in the description and you can also find the interactive activities. You can practice the words you learned here, and don’t forget. These are only five words we talked about in the episode, but there are 15 more waiting for you.

[00:08:12] There are 20 words for you to learn this week from English plus vocabulary builder. But you can find the whole list on my website, along with the interview active activities and the downloadable PDF that you can use to make these words permanent in your active vocabulary bank. This is your host, Danny.

[00:08:29] Thank you very much to another episode from English plus podcast. I will see you next time.

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