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Choose the word/phrase which is opposite in meaning to the italicized word/phrase in the sentence.
This piece of land is the most fertile and yields a good harvest each year.
a- Starting
b- Sterile
c- Worthless
d- Futile

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Last updated date: 21st Jun 2024
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Answer
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Hint: An opposite or an antonym refers to a word that is contrasting in meaning to another word. ‘Fertile’ refers to the ability of a person, plant, or an animal to conceive children or seeds.

Complete answer:
 The word, ‘fertile’ has been derived from the Latin word- Ferre, which means to bear.
We know the meaning and the origin of the word, ‘fertile’. Now, let’s look at its usage-
Example- The fertile female dog gave birth to ten puppies. Here, we can understand that the potent or reproductive female dog gave birth to ten puppies.
Let’s examine the meaning of the given options-
Option a- ‘Starting’ refers to beginning or commencing. Example- All the participants were asked to reach the starting point. ‘Starting’ is different in meaning to ‘fertile’. Hence, it is an incorrect option.
Option b- ‘Sterile’ refers to being infertile or childless. Example- The new vaccination has made him sterile. ‘Sterile’ is opposite in meaning to ‘fertile’. Hence, it is the correct option.
Option c- ‘Worthless’ refers to being inferior or valueless. Example- It was worthless asking him for help. ‘Worthless’ is different in meaning to ‘fertile’. Hence, it is an incorrect option.
Option d- ‘Futile’ refers to being useless or worthless. Example- He was scolded for his futile efforts. ‘Futile’ is different in meaning to ‘fertile’. Hence, it is an incorrect option.
The correct answer is Option ‘b’.

Note:
Some commonly known synonyms of ‘fertile’ are potent, reproductive, fruitful, etc. While some commonly known antonyms of ‘fertile’ are infertile, childless, impotent, etc.