GRE Vocab

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  1. Abate
    To reduce in amount, degree, or severity

    "As the hurricane's force abated, the winds dropped and the sea became calm"
  2. Abscond
    To leave secretly

    "The patron absconded from the restaurant without paying his bill by sneaking out the back door"
  3. Adulterate
    To make impure

    "The chef made his ketchup last longer by adulterating it with water"
  4. Aesthetic
    Concerning the appreciation of beauty

    "Followers of the aesthetic movement regarded the pursuit of beauty as the only true purpose of art"
  5. Aggrandize
    To increase in power, influence, and reputation

    "The supervisor sought to aggrandize herself by claiming that the achievments of her staff were actuallly her own"
  6. Amalgamate
    To combine; to mix together

    "Giant industries amalgamated with Mega Products to form Giant-Mega products inc."
  7. Ameliorate
    To make better; to improve

    "The doctor was able to ameliorate the patients suffering using painkillers"
  8. Anachronism
    Something out of place in time

    "The aged hippie used anachronistic phrases like 'groovy' and 'far out' that had not been popular for years"
  9. Analogous
    Similar or alike in some way; equivalent to

    "In the Newtonian construct for explaining the existence of God, the universe is analogous to a mechanical timepiece, the creation of a divinely intelligent 'clockmaker'"
  10. Antipathy
    Extreme dislike

    "The antipathy between the French and the English regularly erupted into open warfare"
  11. Arbitrate
    To judge a dispute between two opposing parties

    "Since the couple could not come to agreement, a judge was forced to arbitrate their divorce proceedings"
  12. Ardor
    Intense and passionate feeline

    "Bishop's ardor for the landscape was evident when he passionately described the beauty of the scenic Hudson Valley"
  13. Assuage
    To make something unpleasant less severe

    "Serena used aspirin to assuage her pounding headache"
  14. Attenuate
    To reduce in force or degree; to weaken

    "The Bill of Rights attenuated the traditional power of governments to change laws at will"
  15. Audacious
    Fearless and daring

    "Her audacious nature allowed her to fulfill her dream of skydiving"
  16. Austere
    Severe or stern in appearance; undecorated

    "The lack of decoration makes military barraks seem austere to the civillian eye"
  17. Banal
    Predictable, cliched, boring

    "He used banal phrases like 'Have a nice day' or 'Another day another dollar'"
  18. Bolster
    To support; to prop up

    "The presence of giant footprints bolstered the argument that Sasquatch was in the area"
  19. Bombastic
    Pompous in speech and manner

    "The ranting of the radio talk-show host was monstly bombastic; his boasting and outrageous claims had no basis in fact"
  20. Cacophony
    Harsh, jarring noise

    "The junior high orchestra created an almost unbearable cacophony as they tried to tune their instruments"
  21. Capricious
    Changing one's mind quickly and often

    "Queen Elizabeth I was quite capricious; her courtiers could never be sure which of their number would catch her fancy"
  22. Castigate
    To punish or criticize harshly

    "Many Americans are amazed at how harshly the authorities in Singapore castigate perpetrators of what would be considered minor crimes in the United States"
  23. Catalyst
    Something that brings about a change in something else

    "The imposition of harsh taxes was the catalyst that finally brought on the revolution"
  24. Caustic
    Biting in wit

    "Dorothy Parker gained her reputation for caustic wit from her cutting, yet clever, insults"
  25. Chauvinist
    Someone prejudiced in favor of a group to which he or she belongs
  26. Chicanery
    Deception by means of craft or guile

    "Dishonest used-car salespeople often use chicanery to sell their beat-up old cars"
  27. Cogent
    Convincing and well reasoned

    "Swayed by the cogent argument of the defense, the jury had no choice but to acquit the defendant"
  28. Convoluted
    Intricate and complicated

    "Although many people bought 'A Brief History of Time', few could follow its convoluted ideas and theories"
  29. Corroborate
    To provide supporting evidence

    "Fingerprints corroborated the witness's testimony that he saw the defendant in the victim's apartment"
  30. Credulous
    Too trusting; gullible

    "Although some four-year-olds believe in the Easter Bunny, only the most credulous nine-year-olds also believe in him"
  31. Decorum
    Appropriateness of behavior or conduct; propriety

    "The countess complained that the vulgar peasants lacked the decorum appropriate for a visit to the palace"
  32. Deference
    Respect, courtesy

    "The respectful young law clerk treated the Supreme Court justice with the utmost deference"
  33. Deride
    To speak of or treat with contempt; to mock

    "The awkward chld was often derided by his 'cooler' peers"
  34. Desiccate
    To dry out thoroughly

    "After a few weeks of lying on the desert's baking sands, the cow's carcass became completely desiccated"
  35. Desultory
    Jumping from one thing to another; disconnected

    "Diane had a desultory academic record; she had changed majors 12 times in the last 3 years"
  36. Diatribe
    An abusive, condemnatory speech

    "The trucker bellowed a diatribe at the driver who had cut him off"
  37. Diffident
    Lacking self-confidence

    "Steve's diffident manner during the job interview stemmed from his nervous nature and lack of experience in the field"
  38. Dilatory
    Intended to delay

    "The congressman used dilatory measures to delay the passage of the bill"
  39. Dilettante
    Someone with an amateurish and superficial interest in a topic

    "Jerry's friends were suck dilettantes that they seemed to have new jobs and hobbies every week"
  40. Dirge
    A funeral hymn or mournful speech

    "Melville wrote the poem 'A dirge for James McPherson' for the funeral of a union general who was killed in 1864"
  41. Disabuse
    To set free; to free from error

    "Galileo's observations disabused scholars of the notion that the sun revolved around the earth"
  42. Disparate
    Fundamentally different; entirely unlike

    "Although the twins appear to be identical physically, their personalities are disparate"
  43. Dissemble
    To present a false appearance; to disguise one's real intentions or character

    "The villain could dissemble to the police no longer- he admitted the deed and tore up the floor to reveal the body of the old man"
  44. Dissonance
    A harsh and disagreeable combination, often of sounds

    "Cognitive dissonance is the inner conflict produced when long standing beliefs are contradicted by new evidence"
  45. Dogma
    A firmly held opinion, often a religious belief

    "Linus's central dogma was that children who believe in the Great Pumpkin would be rewarded"
  46. Dogmatic
    Dictatorial in one's opinions

    "The dictator was dogmatic- he, and only he, was right"
  47. Dupe
    To decieve a person who is easily decieved
  48. Elegy
    A sorrowful poem or speech

    "Although Thomas Gray's 'Elegy written in a Country Churchyard' is about death and loss, it urges its readers to endure this life and to trust in spirituality"
  49. Eloquent
    Persuasive and moving, especially in speech

    "The Gettysburg Address is moving not only because of its lofty sentiments but also because of its eloquent words"
  50. Enervate
    To reduce in strengh

    "The guerrillas hoped that a series of surprise attacks would enervate the regular army"
  51. Engender
    To produce, cause, or bring about

    "His fear and hatred of clowns was engendered when he witnessed the death of his father at the hands of a clown"
  52. Enigma
    A puzzle; a mystery

    "Speaking in riddles and dressed in old robes, the artist gained a reputation as something of an enigma"
  53. Enumerate
    To count, list, itemize
  54. Emulate
    To copy, to try to equal or excel
  55. Condone
    To overlook, pardon, or disregard
  56. Dilate
    To make larger; to expand
  57. Ephemeral
    Lasting a short time

    "The lives of mayflies seem ephemeral to us, since the flies' average life span is a matter of hours"
  58. Equivocate
    To use expressions of double meaning in order to mislead

    "When faced with criticism of her policies, the politician equivocated and left all parties thinking she agreed with them"
  59. Erratic
    Wandering and unpredictable

    "The plot took a series of erratic turns"
  60. Erudite
    Learned, scholarly, bookish

    "The annual meeting of philosophy professors was a gathering of the most erudite, well-published individuals in the field.
  61. Esoteric
    Known or understood by only few

    "Only a handful of experts are knowledgeable about the esoteric world of particle physics"
  62. Estimable

    "Most people consider it estimable that Mother Theresa spent her life helping the poor of India"
  63. Eulogy
    Speech in praise of someone

    "His best friend gave the eulogy, outling his many achievments and talents"
  64. Euphemism
    Use of an inoffensive word or phrase in place of a more distasteful one

    "The funeral director preffered to use the euphamism 'sleeping' instead of the word 'dead'"
  65. Exacerbate
    To make worse
  66. Exculpate
    To clear from blame; prove innocent

    "The adversarial legal system is intended to convict those who are guilty and to exculpate those who are innocent"
  67. Exigent
    Urgent; requiring immediate action

    "The patient was losing blood so rapidly that it was exigent to stop the source of bleeding"
  68. Exonerate
    To clear of blame
  69. Explicit
    Clearly stated or shown; forthright in expression
  70. Fanatical
    Acting excessively enthusiastic; filled with extreme, unquestioned devotion
  71. Fawn
    To grovel

    "The understudy fawned over the director in hopes of being cast in the part on a permanent basis"
  72. Fervid
    Intensely emotional; feverish

    "The fans of Maria Callas were unusualy fervid , doing anything to catch a glimpse of the great opera singer"
  73. Florid
    Excessively decorated or embellished
  74. Foment
    To arouse or incite

    "The protesters tried to foment feeling against the war through their speeches and demonstrations"
  75. Frugality
    A tendency to be thrifty or cheap
  76. Garrulous
    Tending to talk a lot

    "The garrulous parakeet distracted its owner with its continuous talking"
  77. Gregarious
    Outgoing, sociable

    "She was so gregarious that when she found herself alone, she felt quite sad"
  78. Guile
    Deceit or trickery

    "Since he was not fast enough to catch Road Runner on foot, Coyote resorted to guile in an effort to trap his enemy"
  79. Iconoclast
    One who opposes established beliefs, customs, and institutions

    "His lack of regard for traditional beliefs soon established him as an iconoclast"
  80. Imperturbable
    Not capable of being disturbed
  81. Impervious
    Impossible to penetrate; incapable of being affected

    "A good raincoat will always be impervious to moisture"
  82. Impetuous
    Quick to act without thinking

    "It is not good for an investment broker to be impetuous, since much thought should be given to all the possible options"
  83. Implacable
    Unable to be calmed down or made peaceful

    "His rage at the betrayal was so great that he remained implacable for weeks"
  84. Inchoate
    Not fully formed; disorganized

    "The ideas expressed in Nietzsche's mature work also appear in an inchoate form in his earliest writing"
  85. Ingenuous
    Showing innocence or childlike simplicity

    "She was so ingenuous that her friends feared that her innocence and trustfulness would be exploited when she visited the big city"
  86. Inimical
    Hostile, unfriendly

    "Even though the children had grown up together, they were inimical to each other at school"
  87. Innocuous

    "Some snakes are poisonous but most species are innocuous"
  88. Insipid
    Lacking interest or flavor

    "The critic claimed that the painting was insipid, containing no interesting qualities at all"
  89. Intransigent
    Uncompromising; refusing to be reconciled

    "The professor was intransigent on the deadline, insisting that everyone turn in the assignment at the same time"
  90. Inundate
    To overwhelm; to cover with water

    The tidal wave inundated Atlantis, which was lost beneath the water.
  91. Irascible
    Easily made angry

    "Attila the Hun's irascible and violent nature made all who dealt with him fear for their lives"
  92. Laconic
    Using few words
  93. Lament
    To express sorrow
  94. Laud
    To give praise; to glorify
  95. Lavish
    To give unsparingly (v); extremely generous or extravagant (adj)
  96. Loquacious
  97. Malinger
    To evade responsibility by pretending to be ill

    "A common way to avoid the draft was by malingering- pretending to be mentally or physically ill so as to avoid being taken by the Army"
  98. Misanthrope
    A person who dislikes people
  99. Mitigate
    To soften; to lessen

    "A judge may mitigate a sentence if she decides that a person committed a crime out of need"
  100. Mollify
    To calm or make less severe

    "Their argument was so intense that is was difficult to believe any compromise would mollify him"
  101. Monotony
    Lack of variation
  102. Obdurate
    Hardened in feelining; resistant to persuasion

    "The president was completely obdurate on the issue, and no amount of persuasion would change his mind"
  103. Obsequious
    Overly submissive and eager to please

    "The obsequious new associate made sure to compliment her supervisor's tie and agree with him on every issue"
  104. Obstinate
    Stubburn, unyielding

    "The obstinate child could not be made to eat any food he disliked"
  105. Obviate
    To prevent; to make unnecessary

    "The river was shallow enough to wade across at many points, which obviated the need for a bridge"
  106. Occlude
    To stop up; to prevent the passage of

    "A shadow is thrown across the earth's surface during a solar eclipse, when the light from the sun is occluded by the moon"
  107. Onerous
    Troublesome and oppressive; burdensome

    "The assignment was so extensive and difficult to manage that it proved onerous to the team im charge of it"
  108. Opprobrium
    Public disgrace

    "After the scheme to embezzle the eldely was made public, the treasurer resigned in utter opprobrium"
  109. Ostentation
    Excessive showiness

    "The ostentation of the Sun King's court is evident in the lavish decorations of his palace at Versailles"
  110. Paradox
    A contradiction or dilema

    "It is a paradox that those mose in need of medical attention are often those least able to obtain it"
  111. Paragon
    Model of excellence or perfection

    "She is the paragon of what a judge should be: honest, intelligent, hardworking, and just"
  112. Pedant
    Someone who shows off learning

    "The graduate instructor's tedious and excessive commentary on the subject soon gained her a reputation as a pedant"
  113. Perfidious
    Willing to betray one's trust

    "The actress's perfidious companion revealed all of her intimate secrets to the gossip columnist"
  114. Perfunctory
    Done is a routine way; indifferent

    "The machinelike bank teller processed the transaction and gave the waiting customer a perfuctory smile"
  115. Philanthropy
    Charity; a desire or effort to promote goodness

    "New York's Metropolitan Museum of Art owes much of its collection to the philanthropy of private collectors who willed their estates to the museum"
  116. Placate
    To soothe or pacify
  117. Plastic
    Able to be molded, altered, or bent
  118. Pragmatic
    Practical as opposed to idealistic

    "While daydreaming gamblers think they can get rich by frequenting casinos, pragmatic gamblers realize that the odds are heavily stacked against them"
  119. Precipitate
    To throw violently or bring about abruptly; lacking deliberation

    "Upon learning that the couple married after knowing each other only 2 months, friends and family members expected such a precipitate marriage to end in divorce"
  120. Prevaricate
    To lie or deviate from the truth

    "Rather than admit that he had overslept again, the employee prevaricated and clained that heavy traffic had prevented him from arriving at work on time"
  121. Prodigal
    Lavish, wasteful

    "The prodigal son quickly wasted all of his inheritance on a lavish lifestyle devoted to pleasure"
  122. Pristine
    Fresh and clean; incorrupted

    "Since concerted measure had been taken to prevent looting, the archeological site was still pristine when researchers arrived"
  123. Proliferate
    To increase in number quickly

    "Although she only kept 2 guini pigs initially, they proliferated to such an extent that she soon had dozens"
  124. Propitiate
    To conciliate; to appease

    "The management propitiated the irate union by agreeing to raise the wages for its members"
  125. Propriety
    Correct behavior; obedience to rules and customs

    "The aristocracy maintained a high level of propriety, adhering to even the most minor social rules"
  126. Prudence
    Wisdom, caution, or restraint

    "The college student exhibited prudence by obtaining practical experience along with her studies, which greatly strengthened her resume"
  127. Pungent
    Sharp and irritating to the senses

    "The smoke from the burning tires was extremely pungent to the senses"
  128. Quiescent

    "Many animals are quiescent over the winter months, minimizing activity in order to conserve energy"
  129. Rarefy
    To make thinner or sparser

    "Since the atmosphere rarefies as altitudes increase, the air at the top of very tall mountains is too thin to breathe"
  130. Repudiate
    To reject the validity of

    "The old woman's claim that she was Russian royalty was repudiated when DNA tests showed she was of no relation to them"
  131. Reticent
    Silent, reserved

    "Physically small and reticent in her speech, Joan Didion often went unnoticed by those upon whom she was reporting"
  132. Rhetoric
    Effective writing or speaking
  133. Soporific
    Causing sleep of lethargy

    "The movie proved to be so soporific that soon loud snores were heard throughout the theater"
  134. Specious
    Deceptively attractive, seemingly plausible but fallacious

    "The student's specious excuse for being late sounded legitimate but was proved otherwise when her teacher called her home"
  135. Stigma
    A mark of shame or discredit
  136. Stolid
    Unemotional; lacking sensitivity
  137. Sublime
    Lofty or grand

    "The music was so sublime that it transformed the rude surroundings into a special place"
  138. Tacit
    Done without using words

    "Although not a word had been said, everyone in the room knew that a tacit agreement had been made about which course of action to take"
  139. Taciturn
    Silent, not talkative

    "The clerk's taciturn nature earned him the nickname 'Silent Bob'"
  140. Tirade
    Long, harsh speech or verbal attack
  141. Torpor
    Extreme mental and physical sluggishness

    "After surgery, the patient experienced torpor until the anesthesia wore off"
  142. Transitory
    Temporary, lasting a brief time

    "The reporter lived a transitory life, staying in one place only long enough to cover the current story"
  143. Vacillate
    To sway physically, to be indecisive

    "The customer held up the line as he vacillated between ordering chocolate chip or rocky road ice cream"
  144. Venerate
    To respect deeply

    "In traditional Confucian society, the young venerate their elders, deferring to the elders' wisdom and experience"
  145. Veracity
    Filled with truth and accuracy

    "She had a reputation for veracity, so everyone trusted her description of events"
  146. Verbose

    "The professor's answer was so verbose that his student forgot what the original question had been"
  147. Vex
    To annoy

    "The old man who loved peace and quiet was vexed by his neighbor's loud music"
  148. Volatile
    Easily aroused or changeable; lively or explosive

    "His volatile personality made it difficult to predict his reaction to anything"
  149. Waver
    To fluctuate between choices
  150. Whimsical
    Acting in a fanciful or capricious manner; unpredictable

    "The ballet was whimsical, delighting the chidren with its imaginative characters and unpredictable sets"
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GRE Vocab
2012-05-26 17:21:33
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GRE Vocab
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