It's fun and simple!
  1. Start by clicking on a news article below.
  2. Get help with TOEFL / SAT vocab words while reading.
  3. Take a quiz after you are done reading.
Want to use it on any web page anywhere?
  1. Add the ESL Reader bookmark to your browser.
  2. Go to any web page and click on the bookmark.
News / blog publishers:
Increase your traffic and user engagement using the ESL Reader Widget.

World News North America Europe Asia Latin America Mid-East Africa Live Dictionary API & Feeds About

Select Your Reading Level:   All Levels |  Easy (Simpler English) |  Medium (Intermediate) |  Hard (Advanced)

Sudan transition: Lt-Gen Burhan sworn in as Sovereign Council chief

  • dispensation: On Saturday, the TMC and civilian leaders signed a deal that should pave the way to a new democratic dispensation.
  • abide: Gen Mohamed Hamdan " Hemeti" Dagolo, the second in command in the TMC, has pledged to abide by the terms of the deal.
  • abide: Hemeti, the dominant figure in the military council, tells the BBC he will abide by the deal.
  • academy: Studied at a Sudanese military academy and later in Egypt and Jordan.

Traditional horse-racing in South Africa's Eastern Cape

  • uncommon: Image copyright Shaun Swingler Image caption Lubabalo has been racing horses since he was just five years old, which is not uncommon for a traditional jockey.
  • integral: Image copyright Shaun Swingler Image caption For more than 200 years, traditional horse-racing has been an integral part of Xhosa culture and often serves as an important rite of passage for young boys in the rural Eastern Cape, particularly across the undulating emerald hills that characterise the former apartheid " homeland" of the Transkei.
  • undulate: Image copyright Shaun Swingler Image caption For more than 200 years, traditional horse-racing has been an integral part of Xhosa culture and often serves as an important rite of passage for young boys in the rural Eastern Cape, particularly across the undulating emerald hills that characterise the former apartheid " homeland" of the Transkei.
  • rampant: The sport has undergone a considerable resurgence in recent years, against a backdrop of rampant poverty and underdevelopment.
  • protective: Image copyright Christopher Clark Image caption George believes traditional horse-racing can serve as a protective measure against the social ills that consume too many boys and young men in the Transkei.

Women 'absolutely terrified' of Donald Trump giving Afghanistan deal to the Taliban

  • coincidence: By coincidence, the women of Afghanistan this fall enter their 19th year liberated from the Taliban, whose despotic version of Islam brutally relegated them to specters in their own land.
  • relegate: By coincidence, the women of Afghanistan this fall enter their 19th year liberated from the Taliban, whose despotic version of Islam brutally relegated them to specters in their own land.
  • specter: By coincidence, the women of Afghanistan this fall enter their 19th year liberated from the Taliban, whose despotic version of Islam brutally relegated them to specters in their own land.
  • resumption: Heather Barr, a Human Rights Watch official who works with Afghan women, says " they're absolutely terrified " what might flow from a Taliban resumption of power.
  • precarious: The precarious security situation was underscored Saturday when a suicide-bomb blast in a crowded wedding hall killed 63 and wounded nearly 200, one of the most lethal attacks in Kabul this year.

Sudan generals, protest leaders sign transition deal: AFP

  • premier: Heads of state, prime ministers and dignitaries from several countries-- including Ethiopia's Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and Egypt's premier Mustafa Madbuli-- attended the ceremony in Khartoum, and the signing was met with appl ause.
  • autocrat: The agreement follows nearly eight months of protests-- initially against longtime autocrat Omar al-Bashir, who fell in April, and then against the military council that deposed him.
  • emblazon: The signing ceremony started with Sudan's national anthem, followed by a reading of verses from the Koran and the Old Testament, while the words " Sudan's joy " were emblazoned on banners.

Rival rallies as Hong Kong's divisions deepen

  • course: The new marches came as thousands of pro-government supporters-- many waving Chinese flags-- gathered in a park to condemn their opponents and support the police, a stark illustration of the polarisation now coursing through the city.
  • plunge: Ten weeks of demonstrations have plunged the international finance hub into crisis, with communist-ruled mainland China taking an increasingly hardline tone, including labelling the more violent protester actions " terrorist-like".
  • eschew: Billed as a " rational, non-violen t" protest, it is being organised by the Civil Human Rights Front, a group that eschews confrontations with police and was the driving force behind record-breaking rallies in June and July that saw hundreds of thousands of people hit the streets.
  • rubber: Battles between police firing tear gas and rubber bullets-- and hardcore protesters using rocks, Molotov cocktails and slingshots-- have since become routine in an international finance hub once renowned for stability.
  • behaviour: Deloitte and PwC posted statements on their websites saying the ad does not represent their positions and expressing opposition to violent or illegal behaviour.

Pakistan, India exchange cross-border fire after UN meet on Kashmir

  • restive: India and Pakistan exchanged " heavy" cross-border fire on Saturday, after New Delhi's move to strip the restive Kashmir region of its autonomy prompted a rare meeting of the UN Security Council.
  • poison: The two foes regularly fire potshots over the Line of Control (LoC) in the disputed Himalayan territory, which is divided between the two countries and poisoned their relations since independence in 1947.
  • maze: The transformation of Srinagar into an eerie maze of barricades, soldiers and concertinas of barbed wire has failed to stop public anger boiling to the surface.
  • wire: The transformation of Srinagar into an eerie maze of barricades, soldiers and concertinas of barbed wire has failed to stop public anger boiling to the surface.
  • boil: The transformation of Srinagar into an eerie maze of barricades, soldiers and concertinas of barbed wire has failed to stop public anger boiling to the surface.

China media says Hong Kong response 'won't repeat' Tiananmen

  • repeat: Chinese state media vowed Friday there " won't be a repeat" of the Tiananmen Square crackdown if Beijing moves to quash Hong Kong's pro-democracy protests.
  • repeat: The incident in Hong Kong won't be a repeat of the June 4th political incident in 1989," it wrote in an editorial.
  • strident: An intensifying drumbeat of propaganda and strident warnings have sparked fears that Beijing might look to intervene-- possibly militarily-- in the semi-autonomous city.
  • pariah: The brutal assault resulted in two years of economic near-stagnation as the country became an international pariah.

Border agent who called migrants 'subhuman' pleads guilty to intentionally running over migr...

  • misdemeanor: Bowen agreed to plead guilty to a misdemeanor for violating the rights of Antonin Lopez Aguilar, a 23-year-old migrant from Guatemala.
  • apprehension: "During my apprehension of ( Antonin Lopez Aguilar), I intentionally struck him with an unreasonable amount of force.
  • admonish: He was admonished or verbally reprimanded both times by his supervisor.
  • reprimand: He was admonished or verbally reprimanded both times by his supervisor.

Hong Kong's airport canceled all flights on Monday as protests raged. Here's why.

  • resign: Many Hongkongers have concerns over Beijing asserting its control and believe that Chief Executive Carrie Lam, who originally introduced the extradition legislation, must resign.
  • storm: The protests kicked off on June 9 as hundreds of thousands peacefully took to the streets until a group stormed the government headquarters, where police responded with batons and pepper spray.
  • baton: The protests kicked off on June 9 as hundreds of thousands peacefully took to the streets until a group stormed the government headquarters, where police responded with batons and pepper spray.
  • rubber: One young woman was hit in the eye with a rubber bullet by Hong Kong police during a protest.
  • blind: I am not sure whether her right eye will turn blind or not but it is totally insane and terrible," Wong tweeted.

Russians killed in missile test blast were working on 'new weapons'

  • tout: US experts have said it could be linked to testing of the " Burevestnik" cruise missile, touted by President Vladimir Putin earlier this year.
  • radiation: The military did not initially say that the accident involved nuclear equipment, stressing that radiation levels were normal afterwards.
  • invincible: In a state of the nation address earlier this year Putin announced the development of what he called " invincible" missiles, threatening to deploy them against " decision-making centres" in Western countries if there were serious threats against Russia.
  • submersible: Last month, 14 Russian navy officers were killed in a fire on a top-secret nuclear-powered submersible in circumstances that have not been fully revealed.

Boy Scouts lawsuit: Parents trust teachers and counselors, but should they?

  • fondle: The list of alleged abusers, obtained by USA TODAY, details molestation ranging from fondling to sodomy.
  • fondle: On a camping trip, Dennis came around for " bed check" and fondled him, the former Scout said, telling the child that his " parents did not deserve such a fine boy for a son.
  • ineligible: Dennis, who is deceased, is not listed in the Boy Scouts ' ineligible volunteer files, but his assistant is.
  • ineligible: He was added to the Boy Scouts ' ineligible volunteer files after sentencing.
  • ineligible: He was added to the Boy Scouts ' ineligible volunteer files after the charge.

Cathay Pacific warns staff over 'illegal protests'

  • flood: The airline was also forced to cancel dozens of flights Monday after authorities closed the airport in the afternoon when thousands of protesters flooded the facility.
  • disciplinary: S pecifically, in the current context, there will be disciplinary consequences for employees who support or participate in illegal protests," he added.
  • riot: Cathay has already suspended a pilot accused of rioting after allegedly participating in protests.
  • ire: Cathay appears to have become a target of Beijing's ire in part because some of its crew joined protests, including at the airport.

Cathay Pacific warns it could fire staff for supporting 'illegal protests'

  • termination: These consequences could be serious and may include termination of employment.
  • infuriate: The protests in Hong Kong have infuriated Beijing and left Cathay Pacific in a difficult position.
  • riot: It has already suspended a pilot who has been accused of rioting after allegedly participating in the Hong Kong protests.

Why smartphones are no longer driving the search for 'blue gold'

  • alloy: Combining it with other metals produces alloys that are immensely tough, stable under extreme temperatures and anti-corrosive.
  • speculator: That alone made it valuable, but what has made it especially precious to investors and speculators is its role in the cathodes of rechargeable batteries.
  • cathode: That alone made it valuable, but what has made it especially precious to investors and speculators is its role in the cathodes of rechargeable batteries.
  • hoard: Another factor was that several processors- largely in China and Africa- were hoarding cobalt in the hope of making a killing as the price rose.
  • appalling: These are freelance miners working in horrendous conditions, injured and sometimes dying in landslips as they work with hand-held tools under appalling conditions.

Despite warning signs, why wasn't Jeffrey Epstein on suicide watch when he died?

  • probe: The decision to remove him appears to have been a colossal error that must be thoroughly probed," Harry Litman, former U.S. attorney and deputy assistant attorney general, wrote in a stinging column in the Washington Post.
  • premature: To point fingers now at anybody would be premature I think," he said, adding that the case needs to first be investigated to identify the facts.
  • deposition: The documents included depositions of years of alleged sex acts involving underage girls.

As Police Crack Down on Moscow Protesters, Activists Work to ID Them

  • load: Loading the footage to encrypted instant messaging app Telegram, the pair implored their followers to crowdsource identities of the assailants, a rag-tag band of self-proclaimed Cossacks who delivered the beatings with impunity.
  • instant: Loading the footage to encrypted instant messaging app Telegram, the pair implored their followers to crowdsource identities of the assailants, a rag-tag band of self-proclaimed Cossacks who delivered the beatings with impunity.
  • message: Loading the footage to encrypted instant messaging app Telegram, the pair implored their followers to crowdsource identities of the assailants, a rag-tag band of self-proclaimed Cossacks who delivered the beatings with impunity.
  • assailant: Loading the footage to encrypted instant messaging app Telegram, the pair implored their followers to crowdsource identities of the assailants, a rag-tag band of self-proclaimed Cossacks who delivered the beatings with impunity.
  • impunity: Loading the footage to encrypted instant messaging app Telegram, the pair implored their followers to crowdsource identities of the assailants, a rag-tag band of self-proclaimed Cossacks who delivered the beatings with impunity.

Indian PM Vows to Spur Kashmir Development After Scrapping Special Status

  • instigate: In an address Thursday on television and radio, Modi defended revoking the constitutional provision under which Kashmir could make its own laws, saying it had impeded its progress, given rise to terrorism and was used as a weapon by rival Pakistan to " instigate some people.
  • foment: New Delhi blames Islamabad for fomenting a violent three-decade separatist insurgency in the disputed Himalayan region that both counties claim.
  • alienation: Modi has won praise in several quarters for taking a bold, decisive step that they say in the long run may address the alienation in Kashmir and integrate it with the rest of the country.
  • conciliatory: In a conciliatory statement, the Foreign Ministry urged Islamabad to reconsider its decision " so that normal channels for diplomatic communications are preserved.

19 bodies hung from bridge or hacked up in Mexico gang feud

  • legible: While the banner was not completely legible, it bore the initials of the notoriously violent Jalisco drug cartel, and mentioned the Viagras, a rival gang.
  • loath: For years, Mexican cartels had seemed loath to draw attention to themselves with mass public displays of bodies.
  • caustic: Instead, the gangs went to great lengths to hide bodies, by creating clandestine burial pits or dissolving corpses in caustic chemicals.
  • decapitate: In 2012, the Zetas drug cartel dumped 49 decapitated bodies on a highway in northern Mexico, and that same year they strung nine bodies from an overpass and left 14 severed heads near the city hall.

Trump news: President vows to release 'racism list' after being labelled 'white supremac...

  • trio: The trio of senators are among the parade of candidates who will fan out across Iowa this weekend to participate in the famed state fair and other events.
  • fan: The trio of senators are among the parade of candidates who will fan out across Iowa this weekend to participate in the famed state fair and other events.
  • pilgrimage: The focus on rural Iowa is a mainstay of presidential politics, sending candidates on a sometimes-awkward pilgrimage to the far corners of the state that holds the first-in-the-nation caucuses.
  • caucus: The focus on rural Iowa is a mainstay of presidential politics, sending candidates on a sometimes-awkward pilgrimage to the far corners of the state that holds the first-in-the-nation caucuses.

Former SS guard of Nazi camp, 92, to go on trial in Germany

  • accessory: Though he is not accused of any specific killing, Bruno Dey is charged as an accessory to those committed at Stutthof from August 1944 to April 1945 when he served as a guard there, because he helped prevent prisoners from escaping, according to the charges filed by Hamburg prosecutors.
  • wheel: When he was charged in April, prosecutors called him " a small wheel in the machinery of murd er.
  • machinery: When he was charged in April, prosecutors called him " a small wheel in the machinery of murd er.
  • starve: Prisoners were killed by being given lethal injections of gasoline or phenol directly to their hearts, shot or starved.
  • juvenile: Because of his age at the time of the alleged crimes, he will be tried in juvenile court and faces a possible six months to 10 years in prison if convicted.

President Bill Clinton: Reinstate the Assault Weapons Ban Now

  • deflect: For too long, the gun lobby and their elected allies have stalled, deflected and changed the conversation until the pressure abates and they can get back to business, heedless of the killings inevitably yet to come.
  • abate: For too long, the gun lobby and their elected allies have stalled, deflected and changed the conversation until the pressure abates and they can get back to business, heedless of the killings inevitably yet to come.
  • heedless: For too long, the gun lobby and their elected allies have stalled, deflected and changed the conversation until the pressure abates and they can get back to business, heedless of the killings inevitably yet to come.
  • pain: It pains me to see people in the culture I grew up in buy into the argument that banning weapons of war threatens the Second Amendment and their way of life.
  • delusion: We all have to stand against, not inflame, the racial, religious and gender-based bigotries that often drive the delusions of mass killers.

Kashmir crisis: Will nuclear-armed Pakistan go to war with India again?

  • champion: Pakistan's leaders have used protection of the Muslim majority residents of Kashmir as a unifying call for decades and championed Kashmiris ' right to independence.
  • hostage: Moreover, much of Pakistan's water flows through the Himalayan territory, leaving Pakistani leaders concerned their supply could be held hostage.
  • sudden: Delhi's sudden decision to revoke autonomy in Indian-administered Kashmir has therefore provoked widespread outcry, with accusations the government was blind-sided and has let Kashmiris down.
  • revoke: Delhi's sudden decision to revoke autonomy in Indian-administered Kashmir has therefore provoked widespread outcry, with accusations the government was blind-sided and has let Kashmiris down.
  • outcry: Delhi's sudden decision to revoke autonomy in Indian-administered Kashmir has therefore provoked widespread outcry, with accusations the government was blind-sided and has let Kashmiris down.

China denounces Australian lawmaker's World War Two Germany remark

  • deplore: SYDNEY (Reuters)- China said on Thursday it " strongly deplores " comments by the head of Australia's parliamentary intelligence committee, who likened the West's attitude to China to the inadequate French response to the World War Two advances of Nazi Germany.
  • mentality: The Chinese Embassy in Australia said in a statement that Australian lawmaker Andrew Hastie had a " Cold-War mentality and ideological bias".
  • liberalization: In an opinion piece in Channel 9 newspapers on Thursday, he argued the West had wrongly calculated that economic liberalization in China would lead to democratization.
  • nascent: Burgess previously headed the Australian Signals Directorate, which played a key role in Canberra's decision to ban China's Huawei from Australia's nascent 5G broadband network in 2018.

Judge greenlights libel suit against NPR over Seth Rich reports

  • defamation: Rich's parents also sued Fox News and Butowsky for defamation over their roles in the Fox reports.
  • deposition: The ruling means the lawsuit will proceed to the discovery process, including demands for documents and depositions from the journalists involved, Butowsky and others.
  • litigant: Mazzant has repeatedly been sought out by conservative litigants seeking to challenge Obama policies.

A group of tardigrades crashed into the moon in April. The indestructible critters could still be al...

  • horde: A horde of microscopic critters called tardigrades were passengers aboard the Israeli spacecraft Beresheet, which crashed into the lunar surface nearly four months ago.
  • carcass: Read More:In a lost lake 3,500 feet under the Antarctic Ice, scientists just found the carcasses of tiny creatures.
  • shelter: It's unclear whether that's what really happened, but if so, they 'd be sheltered from UV radiation and cosmic radiation, and surrounding temperatures would consistently remain sub-zero.
  • cosmic: It's unclear whether that's what really happened, but if so, they 'd be sheltered from UV radiation and cosmic radiation, and surrounding temperatures would consistently remain sub-zero.

Lithuania Jewish Community closes Vilnius synagogue over threats

  • plaque: In recent days authorities have acted to remove a plaque to one of the men and rename a street named after another-- sparking a backlash which the LJC claims has been stoked by some politicians who have called for protests.
  • incitement: In this atmosphere of rising tension and incitement to more tension, neither the LJC nor the synagogue in Vilnius have the means to insure the safety of visitors, including Holocaust survivors and their familie s.
  • insure: In this atmosphere of rising tension and incitement to more tension, neither the LJC nor the synagogue in Vilnius have the means to insure the safety of visitors, including Holocaust survivors and their familie s.
  • perish: Before World War II, the 60,000-strong Jewish community accounted for around one-third of Vil nius's residents, but most of them perished under Nazi Germany's 1941-1944 occupation.
  • plaque: Vilnius officials removed a controversial memorial plaque to Jonas Noreika on July 27 from the library building in the city centre.

Fouzi Lekjaa cleared by Caf Disciplinary Board

  • referee: The Confederation of African Football's (Caf) Disciplinary Board has decided not to punish Morocco Football Federation president Fouzi Lekjaa over an incident with an Ethiopian referee.
  • referee: The Match Commissioner Gustavo Ndong Edu, indicated that some players and officials of RS Berkane confronted the referee and other match officials," the report said.
  • culprit: Based on testimonies and official reports, the Disciplinary Board established ambiguities in the reports regarding the incident and the alleged culprit.
  • forgive: It looks unlikely that Tessema will appeal against this latest ruling after forgiving Lekjaa in late July.
  • referee: I don't want to consume much of my time in going between offices in search of disciplinary action," the Fifa referee said.

India scraps special status for Kashmir in step Pakistan calls illegal

  • revoke: NEW DELHI/SRINAGAR (Reuters)- India on Monday revoked the special status of Kashmir, the Himalayan region that has long been a flashpoint in ties with neighboring Pakistan, moving to grasp its only Muslim-majority region more tightly.
  • parliament: The entire constitution will be applicable to Jammu and Kashmir," Interior Minister Amit Shah told parliament, as opposition lawmakers voiced loud protests against the repeal.
  • loud: The entire constitution will be applicable to Jammu and Kashmir," Interior Minister Amit Shah told parliament, as opposition lawmakers voiced loud protests against the repeal.
  • ministry: Foreign ministry officials briefed envoys of several countries on the changes to the state's administrative status, saying they were aimed at promoting good governance, social justice and economic development.
  • brief: Foreign ministry officials briefed envoys of several countries on the changes to the state's administrative status, saying they were aimed at promoting good governance, social justice and economic development.

My late friend, the mayor of Mogadishu

  • brandish: It was late afternoon in Mogadishu, a few years back, and a bleary-eyed man in a dishevelled uniform was blocking my way- and brandishing a gre nade.
  • hesitant: A charming, brave, dedicated, and ridiculously modest man, with a grin usually lurking beneath his hesitant moustache.
  • energetic: Hodan was one of the most energetic, most enthusiastic people I 've ever met.
  • jewel: It was, he 'd say, a jewel of a city on Africa's Riviera.

Uganda's Stella Nyanzi bares breasts in protest at jail sentence

  • autocracy: I exposed the entrenchment of autocracy," she wrote in her most recent post, about the court case.
  • spectator: I refuse to be a mere spectator in the struggle to oust the worst dictator.
  • intolerance: This verdict is outrageous and flies in the face of Uganda's obligations to uphold the right to freedom of expression... and demonstrates the depths of the government's intolerance of criticism," said Amnesty's East Africa Director Joan Nyanyuki.

Beyoncé champions African music stars with Lion King soundtrack

  • akin: The 14-track companion piece to the Disney film is filled with sounds akin to music currently rocking the continent.
  • authentic: I wanted it to be authentic to what is beautiful about the music in Africa.
  • partner: Warner Music Group, which has a presence in South Africa, also recently partnered with Nigerian record label Chocolate City.
  • burgeon: The talent on ground is burgeoning and blooming and the international market is yearning for more," Universal Music Nigeria's general manager, Ezegozie Eze Jr, told the BBC after the company's Lagos office opened last year.
  • adorn: Nigerian visual artist Laolu Senbanjo, known for his Sacred Art of the Ori, adorned the singer and her dancers with body paint for the 2016 music video Sorry.

Cuban Cardinal Jaime Ortega, leading political figure, dead at 82

  • leverage: HAVANA (Reuters)- Roman Catholic Cardinal Jaime Ortega, who came to leverage a rare level of political influence in Cuba for someone outside the Communist Party and played a key role in the island's now-defunct detente with the United States, died on Friday at the age of 82.
  • tireless: "His tireless pastoral work and his love for Cuba led him to decisively strengthen relations between the Roman Catholic Church and the State, " the Cuban government said in a brief statement.
  • pastoral: "His tireless pastoral work and his love for Cuba led him to decisively strengthen relations between the Roman Catholic Church and the State, " the Cuban government said in a brief statement.
  • archbishop: A labor camp inmate in the 1960s when Fidel Castro's revolutionary government was rounding up religious figures and other perceived ideological enemies, Ortega became archbishop of Havana in 1981 at a time when Cuba was still officially atheist.
  • dissident: Shortly before retiring in 2016, he said there were no political prisoners in Cuba, although Cuba's leading dissident human rights organization countered there were 60, including about two dozen people held for conducting peaceful protests.

Honduras: Where climate change and mass migration have created a village of women

  • jewel: More depart every day, their first stop being the border with Guatemala, marked by the Motagua River, which flashes over the hills like a necklace of jewels.
  • blight: This, on top of fungal blight and the low price of beans, has pushed many to the edge.
  • blight: Fir stly, six years ago, the coffee was struck by fungal blight, then in 2016 the world price for beans plummeted to its lowest since 2006, the result, according to industry experts, of an over production of lower grade coffee, especially by countries such as Brazil.
  • double: Farmers now need double the amount of beans they previously required to fill a sack to take to market.
  • fungus: A farmer watches coffee beans affected by the roya fungus at a plantation in Tegucigalpa ( AFP/Getty Images).

Russia warns British media after RT fined for coverage of poisoned spy

  • poison: Russia warns British media after RT fined for coverage of poisoned spy.
  • poison: Britain said Russian military intelligence poisoned Skripal and his daughter Yulia with a Soviet-developed nerve agent known as Novichok.
  • hysteria: Russia repeatedly denied any involvement and said Britain staged the attack to stoke anti-Russian hysteria.

Water dousing of NY police officers sparks row

  • douse: New York (AFP)- President Donald Trump waded into a debate about police restraint Thursday, after two videos went viral showing officers being doused in water in New York.
  • dig: He then took a dig at New York Mayor Bill de Blasio, a candidate for the 2020 Democratic presidential nomination.
  • ridicule: Some people commented online, praising them for not inflaming the situation; others said they should not have tolerated the ridicule.