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GRE vocabulary Flash review

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EMT Flash Review

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GRE
Vocabulary
Flash review

®

New York

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Copyright © 2011 LearningExpress, LLC.
All rights reserved under International and Pan American Copyright Conventions. Published in the United
States by LearningExpress, LLC, New York.
Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data
GRE Vocabulary flash review. — 1st ed.
p. ; cm.
ISBN- 978-1-57685-781-6
1. Vocabulary—Problems, exercises, etc. 2. Graduate
Record Examination. I. LearningExpress (Organization)
PE1449.G656 2011
428.1—dc22

2010053646

G RE V OCABULA RY

Printed in the United States of America
9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1
First Edition
For more information or to place an order, contact
LearningExpress at:
2 Rector Street
26th Floor
New York, NY 10006
Or visit us at: www.learnatest.com 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 4

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Contents
INTRODUCTION. . . . . . . . vii
About This Book. . . . xiii

A . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

B . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

C . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
D . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

1

45
57
87

E . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 123
F . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 159
G . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 173
H . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 181
I . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 189
J . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 225
K . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 229

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L . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 231
M . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 243
N . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 261
O . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 267
P . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 277
Q . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 319
R . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 327
S . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 343
T . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 379
U . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 393
V . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 397
W . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 409
Z . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 411

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Introduction

The GRE general test is designed to test applicants who are applying to graduate school. GRE
Vocabulary Flash Review includes pronunciation guides, definitions, sample sentences, and synonyms for 600 of the words that most commonly appear on the Graduate Record Examination
(GRE) general test. Studying and learning these words will help you succeed on the Verbal Reasoning sections of the exam.

About the GRE General Test

Beginning in August 2011, the Educational Testing
Service (ETS) is offering a revised version of the
GRE general test. The following information reflects the format of the revised general test; changes from the previous version of the test are also noted.
Beginning in August 2011, the GRE will include six sections. (The previous version included fewer but longer sections.)
[ vii ]

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It includes:
An Analytic Writing section, for which you will write two short essays.
■■ Two Verbal Reasoning sections, which test reading comprehension.
■■ Two Quantitative Reasoning sections, which test mathematical concepts and skills.
■■ An unidentified experimental section.
■■

Altogether, the test takes about three and a half hours to complete. The Analytic Writing section is always administered first; the other sections may follow in any order. In addition, a research section may conclude the test. As with the experimental section, your answers on this section will not count toward your final score.
Go to the ETS website for detailed information about each of these exam sections: www.ets.org/gre The Experimental Section

The experimental section may be a third Verbal
Reasoning section, or it may be a third Quantitative Reasoning section. Because this section is experimental, and only designed to test questions for use on future exams, your answers on it will not count toward your final score. However, you will not know which section is the experimental
[ viii ]

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section, so be sure to do your best on all parts of the exam.

Computer-Based Testing

All GRE general tests within the United States are administered by computer. (Only if you take the exam outside the United States, in an area where computer-based testing is unavailable, will you take a paper-based exam; these are administered a limited number of times each year.)
Beginning in August 2011, the format of the computer-based exam will allow you to change answers within a section or skip questions and go back to them later—actions that were not permitted on the previous version of the computerbased exam. Although scratch paper is permitted, the exam is administered entirely by computer.

Vocabulary on the GRE General Test

Unlike the previous version of the GRE general test, the revised version does not include antonyms or analogies—question types that test the understanding of vocabulary out of context.This is good news for you! The context provided by a sentence or passage on which each question is based will help you determine the meaning of the words you study in this book and elsewhere.
[ ix ]

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Beginning in August 2011, the Verbal Reasoning sections of the GRE general test include the following three question types.
Reading Comprehension questions test your understanding of a text. The GRE general test includes about 10 Reading Comprehension passages, ranging in length from one paragraph to several; as few as one and as many as six questions may be asked about a given passage. These will comprise about half of the questions you will see on the Verbal Reasoning sections.
There are three kinds of Reading Comprehension questions:
Some questions are traditional multiplechoice questions, in which you select one correct answer from among five choices.
■■ Some questions require you to select one, two, or three correct answers from among three choices.You cannot receive partial credit for your responses to these questions; you receive credit for your response only if you select all of the correct answers and nothing else.
■■ Some questions, require you to click on the sentence within the passage that meets a particular description.
■■

Some Reading Comprehension questions will ask directly about the meaning of words within
[x]

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a passage. However, because the strength of your vocabulary is a crucial factor in your ability to understand what you read, vocabulary study should help you prepare for Reading Comprehension questions.
For Text Completion questions, you are presented with a brief passage, from which some words have been omitted. Your task is to select the words and/or phrases that complete the passage in a way that makes sense. If the passage includes just one blank, you will be offered five choices, only one of which fills in the blank correctly. If the passage includes two or three blanks, you will be offered three choices for each blank.
For Sentence Equivalence questions, you are presented with a single sentence that includes a blank. Your task is to select two words from among the choices provided, either of which could complete the sentence in a way that makes sense. The two completed sentences will be equivalent in meaning. You cannot receive partial credit for your responses to these questions; you receive credit for your response only if you select both correct answers.
Because of their more focused format, success with Text Completion and Sentence Equivalence questions depends greatly on the strength of your vocabulary.

[ xi ]

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About this Book

The 600 words in this book are presented in alphabetical order. Each page includes three words:
On one side, the words are provided along with a guide to their pronunciation. On the reverse side, definitions, sample sentences, and synonyms are provided for each word. The pages are designed in this way so that you can quiz yourself on the meaning of each word.
The pronunciation of each word is given.
Capital letters indicate stressed syllables, and the following spellings are used to represent some common sounds. g girl

j

jelly

k

kite, cat

s

sun, celery

z

zest, cheese

zh

measure
[ xiii ]

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a

hat

e

bed

i

wish

o

mop

u

cup

ey

cake

ee

eat

ahy

bike

oh

coat

yoo

music

uh

alarm [schwa]

aw

raw

ou

mouse

oo

room

The definitions provided for the words are not comprehensive, but rather focus your attention on the meanings that are the most common— and the most commonly tested. Synonyms are provided to further clarify the meaning of each word. Because the best way to learn vocabulary is to learn it in context, a sample sentence is provided for each word, to illustrate its use.
A word about spelling: yes, it does count! Take care to note and learn the distinction between such commonly confused words as complacent and complaisant and discreet and discrete. Also note the spelling of such words as complement (as opposed to compliment) and imminent (as opposed to eminent).
[ xiv ]

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Using This Book for Vocabulary Study

In truth, vocabulary acquisition is the work of a lifetime. Don’t try to learn all 600 words in this book at once. The best approach is to study the words in sets of about 12 or 15 words (4 or
5 pages) each day. The following is a suggested program of study:
Review a set of words in the morning.
Say each word aloud. Try to think of your own sentences using the words.
■■ Write the words down on a sheet of paper, and keep the sheet with you, checking it throughout the day to familiarize yourself with the list.
■■ In the evening, quiz yourself on the meaning of the words. Use a pencil to write a check next to the words you define correctly; review the words you are unable to define, along with the words you will study the next day.
■■ Periodically quiz yourself on the words you have already studied, to check that you have learned them.
■■

A Last Word on Vocabulary Study:
Read, Read, Read
Vocabulary is learned best when it is learned in context—that’s why we’ve provided a sample
[ xv ]

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sentence for each word in this book. The more frequently you encounter words in a variety of contexts, the better you will be able to remember them, and even discern the nuances of their meaning. So, the best way to learn GRE vocabulary is to read, read, read!
If you are currently an undergraduate, you’re probably scrambling to keep up with your weekly reading assignments. As you read, pay attention to the vocabulary in each assignment.
Take the time to note and look up the meaning of words you don’t know. If you come across one of the words in this book, note the context in which it is used. You might even want to jot down the sentence on the page with the word in this book.
If you are not currently in school, the type of reading that will best prepare you for the GRE general test is nonfiction. Read the newspaper.
Read serious magazines, such as New Yorker,
The Economist, or The Nation. Read biographies.
Choose a subject that matters to you, and read everything you can find on the topic. As you read, pay attention to the vocabulary you encounter; learn the words that are new to you, and note the use of words you have learned from this book.

[ xvi ]

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GRE vocabulary Flash review

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A abate (ah-BEYT)

abdicate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(AB-di-keyt)

aberrant
(ah-BER-uhnt)

[1]

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A to make or become less in degree, intensity, value, or amount
We waited for the storm to abate before we headed out.
Synonyms: decrease, diminish, reduce, subside

to give up a right or responsibility, especially formally Elizabeth II of England would probably not have become queen if her uncle, King Edward
VIII, had not abdicated.
Synonyms: relinquish, renounce, resign

going off the usual, normal, or right way; deviating from the usual or normal type

G RE V OCABULA RY
G RE V OCABULA RY

The aberrant weather during that rainy summer left many feeling as though there had not been any summer at all.
Synonyms: abnormal, atypical, deviant, unusual

[2]

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A abeyance (uh-BEY-uhns)

abject
(AB-jekt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

abjure
(ab-JOOR)

[3]

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A a temporary state of inactivity
We kept our travel plans in abeyance and did not go until we were certain that we had enough money for the trip.
Synonyms: inactivity, recess, suspension

completely hopeless
They lost everything when their house burned down and have since lived in abject conditions, often homeless.
Synonyms: downtrodden, miserable, wretched

to formally reject, often under oath
Though she had completely changed her ways, she could not abjure her former friends.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: forswear, renounce

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[4]

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A abscond (ab-SKOND)

abstemious
(ab-STEE-mee-uhs)

abysmal

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-BIZ-muhl)

[5]

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A to leave secretly and suddenly
One minute the children were underfoot; the next minute, they absconded with all the cookies. Synonyms: disappear, escape, vanish

restrained, especially with food and alcohol
Since she began to do yoga, she has also been abstemious with both alcohol and junk food.
Synonyms: frugal, moderate, restrained, temperate

like an abyss: immeasurably great or low; hopelessly bad

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

He wrote the term paper all in one night, and the results were abysmal.
Synonyms: bottomless, vast, wretched

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[6]

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A accolade (A-kuh-LEYD)

acerbic
(uh-SUHR-bik)

accrue

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-KROO)

[7]

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A an award or other expression of honor or praise Given the number of accolades she has received for her work on stage and in film, it is surprising just how humble she is.
Synonyms: award, honor

sour or harsh in taste, mood, or temperament
He tried to hide his bad mood, but his acerbic reply gave his anger away.
Synonyms: acidic, caustic, harsh, sharp

to grow through additions
As the years accrue, so does wisdom.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: accumulate, collect, increase

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[8]

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A

acumen
(A-kyuh-muhn)

adamant
(A-duh-muhnt)

admonish

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ad-MO-nish)

[9]

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A insight or shrewdness, especially in practical matters Due to the combination of her personal warmth and business acumen, her new company was an instant success.
Synonyms: discernment, insight, judgment, perception insistent, immovable
Though the child protested, his parents were adamant: he had to be in bed by eight o’clock. Synonyms: determined, inflexible, resolute, stubborn, unyielding

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

to advise against something; to gently scold or warn
The teacher admonished the children for tracking mud down the hallways of the school.
Synonyms: advise, reprimand, warn

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A

adulation
(a-juh-LEY-shun)

adulterate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-DUHL-tuh-REYT)

aesthetic
(es-THE-tik)

[ 11 ]

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A excessive admiration, praise, or devotion; flattery The football star enjoyed the adulation of thousands of fans until it was revealed that he had cheated.
Synonyms: devotion, fawning, flattery, worship

to make impure by adding foreign or inferior elements, materials, or ingredients
Do not adulterate this cake batter by using flour of such poor quality!
Synonyms: cheapen, corrupt, dilute, weaken

having to do with beauty or the arts

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Though the morality of the movie is questionable, its aesthetic qualities are admirable: it was beautifully filmed.
Synonym: artistic

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[ 12 ]

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A

affinity
(uh-FI-ni-tee)

aggrandize

aggregate
(A-gre-guht or A-gre-GEYT)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-GRAN-dahyz)

[ 13 ]

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A an attraction, especially one based on a similarity in interests
Countless young women have read and reread
Jane Eyre, feeling an affinity for its fierce heroine.
Synonyms: affection, fondness, sympathy

to make greater in size, power, or honor; to enhance the appearance of greatness
The dictator aggrandized his power by taking control of the press and all other media.
Synonyms: glorify, hype, inflate, strengthen

(adj.) formed by grouping elements into one larger body
The aggregate power of the teammates was far greater than you might imagine based on their individual talents.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: accumulated, collective
(v.) to group elements into one larger body
We need to aggregate the survey results in order to have a clear picture of the overall data.
Synonyms: assemble, collect, combine
(n.) a body of associated elements
In the aggregate, her small daily efforts resulted in a gorgeous book of poems.
Synonyms: combination, mass, whole

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 14

[ 14 ]

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A alacrity (uh-LA-kruh-tee)

alchemy
(AL-kuh-mee)

allay

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-LEY)

[ 15 ]

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A cheerful readiness
He replied to the invitation with alacrity; he was eager for the opportunity to travel to
Puerto Rico.
Synonyms: liveliness, promptness, willingness

the power or process that can change something ordinary into something valuable; a medieval pseudoscience with the purpose of changing lead into gold
The alchemy that transformed him into a dashingly handsome man in her eyes was love.
Synonyms: enchantment, magic, sorcery

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

to put to rest; to decrease in strength or difficulty After they heard the coyotes howling, nothing but the dawn could allay their fears.
Synonyms: alleviate, calm, ease, lessen, relieve

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 16

[ 16 ]

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A alleviate (uh-LEE-vee-eyt)

alloy
(A-loi)

GRE VO CABULA RY

allure
(uh-LOOR)

[ 17 ]

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A to lessen the burden, make easier
Her calm support did much to alleviate his difficulties with the task.
Synonyms: allay, ease, lighten, relieve

a mixture of two or more different things; literally, a mixture of two or more metals or of a metal and nonmetal
Even sterling silver is actually an alloy of silver with another metal, usually copper.
Synonyms: blend, combination, composite, compound (v.) to attract

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Only the possibility that his favorite singer might perform could allure him to attend the concert. Synonyms: charm, entice, tempt
(n.) that which attracts
Easily nauseated, she could not see the allure of a roller coaster.
Synonyms: appeal, charm

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 18

[ 18 ]

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A amalgamate (uh-MAL-guh-MEYT)

ambiguous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(am-BI-gyoo-wuhs)

ambivalence
(am-BI-vuh-luhns)

[ 19 ]

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A to mix or combine into one body
The plan to amalgamate the two high schools was not well thought out, and the students did not easily unite into one school.
Synonyms: blend, incorporate, integrate, merge ill-defined or uncertain; possible to be understood in different ways
Her habitual sarcasm rendered her statement ambiguous; no one could tell if she really meant what she said.
Synonyms: cryptic, enigmatic, indefinite, indeterminate G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

uncertainty; the state of having two or more contradictory feelings about something at the same time
His ambivalence about playing the piano went on for years, and he thought about quitting every day until he enrolled at the conservatory.
Synonyms: doubt, indecision, uncertainty

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 20

[ 20 ]

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A

ameliorate
(uh-MEEL-yuh-reyt)

amenable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-ME-nuh-buhl)

amenity
(uh-ME-nuh-tee)

[ 21 ]

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A to get or make better
Her illness was ameliorated by the fact that it permitted her finally to rest and get enough sleep. Synonyms: alleviate, improve, relieve

agreeable, willing, or submissive; answerable or legally responsible; able to be examined or tested Even though it would require him to redo much of the work he had done so far, he was amenable to the change in plans.
Synonyms: cooperative, manageable; accountable

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

the quality of being agreeable; a feature that increases value or comfort
He had become so used to the general amenity of the community that the rudeness of the grocery store clerk shocked him.
Synonyms: charm, pleasantness; advantage, convenience 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 22

[ 22 ]

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A anachronism (uh-NA-kruh-ni-zuhm)

analogous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-NA-luh-guhs)

anarchy
(A-nuhr-kee)

[ 23 ]

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A a person or thing that is out of place in time
Her floor-length skirts and elaborately done up hair were anachronisms that she nevertheless pulled off with grace.
Synonym: misplacement

comparable in such a way that an analogy can be drawn
Freud viewed the mind as analogous to a steam engine, whereas today we are more likely to compare it to a computer.
Synonyms: alike, corresponding

lack of government; complete disorder

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

When the teacher was called out of the classroom, the children erupted into gleeful anarchy. Synonyms: chaos, confusion, turmoil

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 24

[ 24 ]

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A anathema (uh-NA-thuh-muh)

anodyne
(A-nuh-dahyn)

GRE VO CABULA RY

anomaly
(uh-NO-muh-lee)

[ 25 ]

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A someone or something that is cursed or disliked intensely; a curse
Except for carrots, vegetables were anathema to the toddler.
Synonyms: abomination, pariah

something that comforts; a medicine that relieves pain
The music of Bach was an anodyne to her through the months of mourning.
Synonyms: balm; painkiller

something different, irregular
His late submission was an anomaly; he was known for meeting his deadlines.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: aberration, exception, irregularity, oddity 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 26

[ 26 ]

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A antipathy (an-TI-puh-thee)

apostate
(uh-PO-steyt)

apogee

GRE VO CABULA RY

(A-puh-jee)

[ 27 ]

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A dislike, feeling against
He could not overcome his antipathy for dogs, even to date a woman who had a poodle as a pet.
Synonyms: aversion, disgust, loathing

one who renounces a previous loyalty, such as to a religion, nation, or party
Though she had many disagreements with the party, she had no plans to become an apostate.
Synonyms: defector, dissenter, heretic, nonconformist the highest point; literally, the point at which an orbiting body is farthest from Earth

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Finalizing the deal that spring was the apogee of her career thus far.
Synonyms: apex, climax, summit, zenith

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 28

[ 28 ]

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A appease (uh-PEEZ)

apprise
(uh-PRAYHZ)

GRE VO CABULA RY

approbation
(a-pruh-BEY-shuhn)

[ 29 ]

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A to bring to a state of peace
Only singing her favorite song could appease the distressed child.
Synonyms: calm, pacify, soothe

to inform
He kept the radio on at all times, to be sure he was kept apprised of the latest weather report. Synonyms: advise, enlighten, notify

formal approval
Make art to express yourself, not to win the approbation of others.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: approval, commendation, endorsement, recognition

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 30

[ 30 ]

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A appropriate (uh-PRO-pree-eyt)

archaic
(ahr-KEY-ik)

arduous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(AHR-juh-wuhs)

[ 31 ]

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A to set apart for a specific use; to take for oneself The army appropriated all vehicles in the region for military use.
Synonyms: confiscate, seize, steal, usurp

of the past; extremely old or out of date
Students think that the language of Shakespeare is archaic until they encounter the work of Chaucer, who lived about two centuries earlier.
Synonyms: ancient, obsolete, old-fashioned

extremely difficult; requiring much energy or effort G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Running a marathon is arduous enough in itself; I can’t imagine doing it as the last leg of a triathlon.
Synonyms: exhausting, grueling, strenuous

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 32

[ 32 ]

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A artless (AHRT-luhs)

ascetic
(uh-SE-tik)

asperity

GRE VO CABULA RY

(a-SPER-uh-tee)

[ 33 ]

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A natural, simple, and without artificiality; without knowledge or skill
The child artlessly won over even the crankiest adults simply by smiling at them.
Synonyms: genuine, straightforward, unaffected, uncultured strictly self-denying, often for spiritual purposes
The ascetic practices of a monk are certainly not for everyone.
Synonyms: austere, disciplined, strict

severity of tone, manner, or temper; roughness
The asperity with which she spoke revealed her anger about the situation.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: harshness, sharpness

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 34

[ 34 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

A

aspersion
(uh-SPER-zhuhn)

assiduous
(uh-SI-juh-wuhs)

assuage

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-SWEYJ)

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A a false accusation intended to do harm
He cast aspersions on his rival, but everyone could see that his wild claims were not true.
Synonyms: defamation, slander

characterized by persistent and careful attention or effort
An assiduous student, she earned the highest grades despite her learning disability.
Synonyms: attentive, constant, persevering

to decrease the intensity or severity of
Nothing but time could assuage their grief after they lost their home.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: calm, ease, relieve

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 36

[ 36 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

A astringent (uh-STRIN-juhnt)

asylum
(uh-SAHY-luhm)

attenuate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-TEN-yuh-WEYT)

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A harsh, caustic, strict
He was the only employee unafraid of the boss’s astringent tongue.
Synonyms: biting, bitter, cutting, sharp

a place or state of shelter and protection; a place for the care of the ill or insane
The refugees found asylum at the monastery.
Synonyms: refuge, retreat, sanctuary

to make thin or weak
Her enthusiasm was attenuated by the length of the event; she did not like to be kept awake so late.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: debilitate, lessen, weaken

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 38

[ 38 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

A audacious (aw-DEY-shuhs)

austere
(aw-STEER)

autonomous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(aw-TO-nuh-muhs)

[ 39 ]

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A daring, recklessly brave; inventive, unconventional I am hardly audacious enough to go scuba diving, let alone sky diving!
Synonyms: adventurous, bold, rash

somber, strict, or stern in manner or appearance
The house was plain and blended into the austere winter landscape.
Synonyms: ascetic, rigorous, serious, solemn

independent

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

There are many who wish that the city government were more autonomous and did not have to abide by the decisions made at the distant state capital.
Synonyms: self-governing, self-ruling, sovereign

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 40

[ 40 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

A avarice (A-vuh-ruhs)

aver
(uh-VUHR)

avocation

GRE VO CABULA RY

(a-vuh-KEY-shun)

[ 41 ]

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A a greed for wealth that cannot be satisfied
His avarice was a source of great discontent; he could not be happy with what he already had.
Synonyms: covetousness, greed, rapacity

to declare or prove to be true
I can aver that her story is true, because I was there and saw it happen myself.
Synonyms: affirm, assert, claim, verify

an occupation pursued for enjoyment
She pursued her avocation of designing jewelry in the evenings after returning home from her day job.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: diversion, hobby, pastime

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 42

[ 42 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

A

axiomatic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(AK-see-uh-MA-tik)

[ 43 ]

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A taken as an axiom, or self-evident truth
Until Copernicus showed otherwise, it was taken as axiomatic that the Earth was the center of the universe.
Synonyms: accepted, fundamental, given, obvious G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 44

[ 44 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

B banal (buh-NAL)

bawdy

GRE VO CABULA RY

(BAW-dee)

behemoth
(bi-HEE-muhth)

[ 45 ]

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B unoriginal, trite
The musical was unbelievably banal; the characters, plot, and music completely lacked originality. Synonyms: bland, conventional, hackneyed

obscene, often in a boisterous or humorous way Shakespeare’s language can be as bawdy as it is beautiful.
Synonyms: coarse, indecent, lewd, vulgar

something enormous in size or power

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The company was a behemoth, associated with about 1,000 brands, some of them even competing with each other.
Synonyms: beast, giant, leviathan, mammoth

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 46

[ 46 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

B belie (bi-LAYH)

bellicose
(BEH-li-kohs)

beneficent

GRE VO CABULA RY

(buh-NE-fuh-suhnt)

[ 47 ]

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B to reveal the falsehood of, contradict
His blushing face belied his claim that he did not care.
Synonyms: disprove, negate, repudiate

inclined or eager to fight
The bellicose young man picked fights on the playground nearly every day.
Synonyms: belligerent, combative, hostile, warlike doing good
Every fall, they celebrated the beneficent
Earth for its rich harvest.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: benevolent, generous, kind

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 48

[ 48 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

B blandishment (BLAN-dish-muhnt)

bolster
(BOHL-stuhr)

bombastic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(bom-BAS-tik)

[ 49 ]

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B flattery intended to persuade
The blandishments of the salesperson got the better of her judgment, and she purchased the stereo, only to return it the next day.
Synonyms: coaxing, fawning, wheedling

to give support
The coach bolstered their spirits after they played a poor first half, and ultimately they won the game.
Synonyms: brace, sustain, uphold

obnoxiously pretentious in speech or writing

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After an evening of listening to bombastic speeches, I left the award ceremony with a headache. Synonyms: pompous

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 50

[ 50 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

B boorish (BOOR-ish)

brazen
(BREY-zuhn)

broach

GRE VO CABULA RY

(brohch)

[ 51 ]

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B rude in a way that reveals insensitivity to others
He lost several friends because of his boorish behavior at the party that night.
Synonyms: bad mannered, coarse, crude

shamelessly bold
He was so brazen as to interrupt the guest speaker in the middle of her remarks.
Synonyms: audacious, cocky, impudent

to mention for the first time
Though he loved her dearly, he was too timid to broach the topic of marriage.
Synonyms: introduce, propose, suggest

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 52

[ 52 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

B bucolic (byoo-KO-lik)

burgeon
(BUHR-juhn)

burnish

GRE VO CABULA RY

(BUHR-nish)

[ 53 ]

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B having to do with shepherds or rural life
He enjoyed their vacation in bucolic northern
New England; she longed to return to the city.
Synonyms: pastoral, rural, rustic

to sprout, bloom, and grow
She burgeoned into an eager reader shortly after beginning first grade.
Synonyms: blossom, flourish

to polish, especially by rubbing
The carpenter burnished the surface of the table until it was smooth and glossy.
Synonyms: brighten, rub, shine

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 54

[ 54 ]

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B buttress GRE VO CABULA RY

(BUH-truhs)

[ 55 ]

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B to support, prop up
She listened to the anthem again and again, to buttress her courage.
Synonyms: bolster, brace, strengthen

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 56

[ 56 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C cacophony (kuh-KO-fuh-nee)

calumny
(kuh-LUM-nee)

GRE VO CABULA RY

canon
(KA-nuhn)

[ 57 ]

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C harsh, discordant sound
To her, it was powerfully stirring music; to her parents, it was unbearable cacophony.
Synonyms: discord, noise

false charges made with the intention of harming the reputation of another
Despite the falseness of the charges, the calumny ended her career in politics.
Synonyms: defamation, slander

a body of fundamental rules or standards; a set of sacred texts or other comprehensive list of texts G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Many of the books we take as part of the canon today may be forgotten in the next century. Synonyms: dogma, law, principle

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 58

[ 58 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C cant (kant)

capricious
(kuhp-REE-shuhs)

captious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(KAP-shuhs)

[ 59 ]

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C the use of trite or stock language, especially for insincere expressions of enthusiasm or piety We were disgusted with the empty cant of the politicians, who had done nothing to prevent the disaster.
Synonyms: hypocrisy, sanctimoniousness

impulsive, tending to act according to whim
He was so capricious that he rarely kept a job longer than a few months.
Synonyms: arbitrary, erratic, unpredictable

tending to find fault; designed to confuse

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The teacher’s feedback was more captious than instructive.
Synonyms: cantankerous, faultfinding, finicky, nit-picking 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 60

[ 60 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C

castigation
(kas-ti-GEY-shuhn)

catalyst
(KA-tuh-luhst)

GRE VO CABULA RY

causal
(KAW-zuhl)

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C severe criticism or punishment
The children did not expect such castigation from their gentle teacher, who later apologized for reprimanding them so harshly.
Synonyms: chastisement, discipline, invective

an agent that causes or speeds up a change or activity; literally, a substance that causes or speeds up a chemical reaction
They had talked about moving for years; her pregnancy was the catalyst that finally spurred them to take action.
Synonyms: impetus, stimulus

relating to a cause

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

She understood the causal relationship between the care she took with her studies and her grades. 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 62

[ 62 ]

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C caustic (KAWS-tik)

cavil

GRE VO CABULA RY

(KA-vil)

censure
(SEN-sher)

[ 63 ]

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C able to burn or corrode; sarcastic
Her caustic tone and sarcastic words said everything we needed to know about her thoughts about getting fired.
Synonyms: acerbic, biting, harsh

to raise minor objections
His tendency to cavil at new ideas made him a poor manager, and he was soon fired.
Synonyms: criticize, quibble

blame, formal condemnation
The censure of her colleagues did nothing to curb her illicit behavior.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: criticism, disapproval, reprimand

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 64

[ 64 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C chary (CHER-ee)

chasten
(CHEY-suhn)

chicanery

GRE VO CABULA RY

(shi-KEYN-uh-ree)

[ 65 ]

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C cautious She was chary of auditioning for another play after the last production ended in a debacle.
Synonyms: careful, restrained, wary

to correct through punishment
The children were thoroughly chastened after they spent their weekend cleaning the playground they had damaged.
Synonyms: discipline, humiliate, subdue

deception through trickery
He won the competition through chicanery, not talent.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: artifice, cheating, subterfuge

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[ 66 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C chimera (kahy-MIR-uh)

circuitous
(suhr-KYOO-uh-tuhs)

coagulate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(koh-A-gyuh-leyt)

[ 67 ]

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C a terrible illusion, an imagined monster
The chimera that haunts him at night is his idea of himself in the future.
Synonyms: delusion, mirage

going in a winding, indirect way
Though it may have been quicker to go by the highway, we enjoyed the circuitous drive to the lake.
Synonyms: rambling, roundabout

to thicken; to gather in a mass
The milk became sour and began to coagulate.
Synonyms: congeal, clot, curdle, solidify

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 68

[ 68 ]

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C coda (KOH-duh)

cogent
(KOH-juhnt)

commensurate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kuh-MEN-se-ruht)

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C the conclusion of a work of music, literature, drama, or film, often formally different from the rest of the work
We knew how the story was going to turn out long before the play reached its coda.
Synonyms: conclusion, ending, finale

very convincing and appealing to reason; relevant The senator was not able to give a cogent argument in favor of his re-election.
Synonyms: apt, compelling, persuasive, telling

equal or corresponding in measure, degree, intensity, or duration

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

If your effort is commensurate with your desire, you are likely to succeed.
Synonyms: comparable, equivalent, proportionate 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 70

[ 70 ]

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C

compendium
(kuhm-PEN-dee-uhm)

complacent
(kuhm-PLEY-suhnt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

complaisant
(kuhm-PLEY-suhnt)

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C a summary of a larger work or body of knowledge; a complete list of items
The thin volume included a compendium of all the different kinds of birds he had seen visiting the woods in his backyard.
Synonyms: abstract, digest, overview, survey

satisfied with one’s own condition
It is easy to be complacent with one’s own good fortune rather than to use it to better the lives of others.
Synonyms: self-satisfied, smug, unconcerned

inclined to please

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The girl was shy but complaisant, and soon warmed up to the company.
Synonyms: agreeable, gracious, obliging

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C

complement
(KOM-pluh-ment)

compliant

conciliatory
(kuhn-SI-lee-uh-taw-ree)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kuhm-PLAHY-uhnt)

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C something that completes or perfects
For her, coffee is a necessary complement to breakfast. Synonyms: counterpart, enhancement, supplement conforming, submissive
Stand firmly on your ground—don’t be so compliant! Synonyms: docile, obedient, obliging, yielding

tending to gain goodwill, overcome distrust
Upon hearing her conciliatory words, no one was in the mood to argue anymore.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: appeasing, civil, placating

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[ 74 ]

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C confound (kuhn-FOUND)

connoisseur
(ko-nuh-SUHR)

contention

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kuhn-TEN-shuhn)

[ 75 ]

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C to confuse thoroughly
The directions confounded her so completely that she ended up on the wrong side of town.
Synonyms: baffle, bewilder, frustrate, perplex

one who understands, appreciates, and can make judgments of an art or matter of taste
Though he claimed to be a connoisseur of twentieth century art, he could not even tell a
Picasso from a Pollock.
Synonyms: aficionado, expert, specialist

opposition, strife; an idea proposed and held in debate or argument

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The constant mishaps of her lackadaisical brother became a source of contention with her husband.
Synonyms: conflict, discord, quarrel

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[ 76 ]

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C contiguous (kuhn-TI-gyoo-wuhs)

contrite

contumacious
(kon-too-MEY-shuhs)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kuhn-TRAHYT)

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C in contact, adjoining
The state of Alaska is contiguous with Canada but not with the United States.
Synonyms: adjacent, bordering, neighboring, touching feeling or showing sorrow for wrongdoing
Though he was contrite after their argument, she was not easily willing to forgive.
Synonyms: apologetic, penitent, remorseful, sorry stubbornly rebellious

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The contumacious little girl refused to listen to reason and to wear a jacket or shoes.
Synonyms: headstrong, obstinate

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[ 78 ]

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C conundrum (kuh-NUHN-druhm)

convention
(kuhn-VEN-shuhn)

GRE VO CABULA RY

convivial
(kuhn-VI-vee-uhl)

[ 79 ]

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C a complicated problem; literally, a riddle with a pun or wordplay in its answer
The disorder in his bedroom every morning was a conundrum, until they realized that he was sleepwalking at night.
Synonyms: puzzle, riddle, trick

a meeting; an agreement; the standard or usual way of doing things
As e-mail has become the main form of written correspondence, many people are forgetting the conventions of letter writing.
Synonyms: custom, habit

enjoying company, food, and drink

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

A convivial person, she looks forward to the holidays even though they mark the beginning of winter.
Synonyms: agreeable, friendly, jovial

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 80

[ 80 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C convoluted (KON-vuh-loo-tuhd)

copious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(KOH-pee-uhs)

craven
(KREY-vuhn)

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C full of twists and turns, complicated
His convoluted directions were unnecessary; all that he needed to say was, “Turn left at the corner.” Synonyms: complex, intricate, puzzling

numerous, plentiful
She took copious notes and filled several notebooks every term.
Synonyms: abundant, extensive, generous

completely lacking in courage

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Please tell me you are not so craven as to forfeit the game rather than face your fiercest opponent. Synonyms: cowardly, fearful, timid

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[ 82 ]

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C credulous (KRE-juh-luhs)

culpable
(KUHL-puh-buhl)

cynicism

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SI-nuh-si-zuhm)

[ 83 ]

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C willing to believe; originating in credulity
As a teacher, he was far too credulous, and his students could get away with almost anything, so long as they could tell a story to explain it.
Synonyms: believing, gullible, unsuspecting

deserving blame
Though she was clearly culpable, she was never even charged for the crime.
Synonyms: blameworthy, guilty, liable

a complete lack of faith, especially in the values and motives of humans

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Despite his cynicism, he was also charming, and soon everyone was seduced by his gloomy outlook.
Synonyms: bitterness, negativism, pessimism, sarcasm 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 84

[ 84 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

C

cynosure

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SI-no-shor)

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C center of attraction
The movie star is an unapologetic cynosure; she always expects all eyes to be on her.
Synonyms: hotshot

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 86

[ 86 ]

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D dearth (duhrth)

debacle
(duh-BAH-kuhl)

debauchery

GRE VO CABULA RY

(di-BAW-chuh-ree)

[ 87 ]

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D a shortage, an inadequate supply
The dearth of clean water was due to the drought. Synonyms: deficiency, lack, scarcity

a disaster or complete failure
The play was supposed to be a tragedy, but the production was such a debacle that the audience laughed through the third act.
Synonyms: breakdown, defeat, fiasco, wreck

indulgence in physical pleasures
His life of debauchery took a toll on his body, and he looked far older than his years.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: depravity, intemperance, revelry

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[ 88 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D decorum (di-KOHR-uhm)

default
(di-FAWLT)

deference

GRE VO CABULA RY

(DEH-fuh-ruhns)

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D propriety and good taste
Please conduct yourselves with decorum during our visit to the mayor’s office.
Synonyms: civility, convention, dignity

(n.) a failure to act or fulfill an obligation
We hired him by default; none of the other applicants showed up for the interview.
Synonyms: disregard, neglect
(v.) to fail to act or fulfill an obligation
She defaulted on her mortgage payments after she lost her job.
Synonyms: evade, neglect

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

respect for and submission to the judgment or will of another, especially an elder or superior
The children treated their grandparents with deference. Synonyms: compliance, courtesy, esteem, regard 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 90

[ 90 ]

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D defunct (di-FUHNGKT)

delineate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(di-LI-nee-eyt)

demur
(di-MUHR)

[ 91 ]

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D no longer working or in use; no longer existing
The organization had been defunct for nearly a decade when she decided to revive it.
Synonyms: obsolete; extinct

to describe or portray in detail
The CEO took the time to delineate her plans for the company, so that everyone would understand the direction they would be taking in the next year.
Synonyms: characterize, depict, draw, represent to express disagreement, object

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Everyone else was enthusiastic about the project, but she demurred, saying it would never succeed.
Synonyms: oppose, refuse

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[ 92 ]

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D denigrate (de-ni-GREYT)

denouement

GRE VO CABULA RY

(DEY-noo-mawn)

derision
(di-RI-zhuhn)

[ 93 ]

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D to attack the reputation or achievements of another He did nothing but denigrate his classmates’ artwork, but could hardly tolerate the most neutral comment about his own.
Synonyms: belittle, criticize, disparage

the outcome of a story or series of events
The denouement was unsatisfying: the hero woke up, and it turned out that the entire story had been his dream.
Synonyms: conclusion, culmination, resolution

ridicule, contempt

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The poorly plotted film was the object of much derision from critics, but audiences loved it.
Synonyms: disdain, mockery, scorn

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 94

[ 94 ]

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D

derivative
(di-RI-vuh-tiv)

desiccate
(DEH-si-keyt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

desuetude
(DEH-swi-tood)

[ 95 ]

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D derived from something else, lacking in originality His first album was derivative R & B, but his second album was completely original and propelled him to fame.
Synonyms: banal, copied, imitative

to dry up
The desiccated landscape had not seen rain in months. Synonyms: dehydrate, deplete, wither

the state of no longer being in use

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After the original members of the sorority graduated, many of their rituals were forgotten and soon fell into desuetude.
Synonyms: disuse, inactivity

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 96

[ 96 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D

desultory
(DE-suhl-tohr-ee)

deterrent
(di-TUHR-uhnt)

detraction

GRE VO CABULA RY

(di-TRAK-shuhn)

[ 97 ]

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D lacking a plan or sense of purpose, disconnected
His desultory ways were maddening to her; she preferred to get right to the point.
Synonyms: aimless, chance, erratic, rambling

that which prevents
The new methods of policing the neighborhood turned out to be an effective deterrent to crime.
Synonyms: curb, hindrance, obstacle, restraint

a lessening of reputation, especially due to criticism; the act of taking away
As a result of the critics’ many detractions of the novel, it sold only a few dozen copies.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: misrepresentation, slander

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 98

[ 98 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D diaphanous (dahy-A-fuh-nuhs)

diatribe
(DAHY-uh-trahyb)

dichotomy

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dahy-KO-tuh-mee)

[ 99 ]

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D extremely fine or delicate to the point of transparency; insubstantial
The starlet’s diaphanous gown was both gorgeous and scandalous.
Synonyms: gossamer, flimsy, sheer

a critical or abusive speech or piece of writing
After taking in her boss’s long diatribe about her work, she simply quit.
Synonyms: harangue, invective, tirade

a division into two opposite or mutually exclusive groups

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The dichotomy between her words and actions was startling; to hear her talk, you’d think she could do nothing right, whereas I had never seen her do anything wrong.
Synonyms: bifurcation, difference, separation

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 100

[ 100 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D didactic (dahy-DAK-tik)

diffidence
(DI-fi-duhns)

diffuse

GRE VO CABULA RY

(di-FYOOS)

[ 101 ]

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D tending or intended to inform or teach
Because our values are so different today, the didactic novels of the past are now more humorous than instructive.
Synonyms: academic, instructive, pendantic

shyness, lack of confidence
He overcame his diffidence and gave a stirring speech at the rally.
Synonyms: hesitancy, insecurity, reluctance, reservation wordy and disorganized; not concentrated, spread around

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The lecturer was so diffuse that although she shared a wealth of information, we hardly learned anything.
Synonyms: rambling; diluted, scattered, widespread 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 102

[ 102 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D digression (dahy-GRE-shuhn)

dilettante
(DI-luh-tahnt)

dirge

GRE VO CABULA RY

(duhrj)

[ 103 ]

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D a turning away from the main course or subject
This paragraph is a digression from the main topic of the essay, but it is more interesting to me than anything else.
Synonyms: departure, diversion, wandering

a lover of or dabbler in the arts
He called himself a dilettante, but he was actually an accomplished pianist.
Synonyms: amateur, connoisseur, rookie

a slow, mournful piece of music, especially one intended for a funeral or similar occasion
The orchestra played the piece so slowly that it sounded like a dirge.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: lament, requiem

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 104

[ 104 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D

disabuse
(DIS-uh-byooz)

discerning
(di-SUHR-ning)

discordant

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dis-KOR-duhnt)

[ 105 ]

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D to clear up an error or confusion
The nutritionist worked hard to disabuse the public of the notion that vegetarians cannot get enough protein.
Synonyms: correct, debunk, enlighten

having good judgment or understanding
Only the most discerning customers can tell the difference between this fabric and real silk.
Synonyms: discriminating, insightful, knowledgeable, perceptive

not in harmony, quarrelsome

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

She was a brilliant leader who could listen to the discordant voices of the Senate and somehow find a way to compromise.
Synonyms: cacophonous, contradictory, inconsistent 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 106

[ 106 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D

discredit
(dis-KRE-duht)

discreet
(dis-KREET)

GRE VO CABULA RY

discrepancy
(dis-KRE-puhn-see)

[ 107 ]

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D to refuse to believe or cause others to disbelieve He had to discredit the ridiculous idea that with a better diet, one could get by with only five hours of sleep each night.
Synonyms: doubt, question, reject

maintaining or respecting privacy, especially about something of a delicate nature
They were so discreet about the affair that it was never discovered.
Synonyms: cautious, modest, prudent, restrained disagreement, inconsistency

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The investigation of a small discrepancy in an account revealed widespread fraud at that bank. Synonyms: conflict, difference, dissimilarity, variation 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 108

[ 108 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D

discrete
(dis-KREET)

disingenuous

disinterested
(dis-IN-truhs-tuhd)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dis-in-JEN-yoo-uhs)

[ 109 ]

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D separate, distinct
The course was given in three discrete sessions; you could attend just one or two and still follow the material.
Synonyms: apart, detached, isolated

lacking in truth, often while giving the appearance of truthfulness
Their advertising was disingenuous, featuring photographs that made their dumpy hotel look like a paradise.
Synonyms: deceitful, dishonest, insincere, hypocritical G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

not personally engaged, without emotional interest He could not participate on the jury; the victim was his cousin, and so he could not be disinterested in the outcome of the trial.
Synonyms: dispassionate, indifferent, unbiased, unconcerned 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 110

[ 110 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D disjointed (dis-JOIN-tuhd)

dismiss

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dis-MIS)

disparage
(di-SPER-ij)

[ 111 ]

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D disorderly, out of sequence
She told the story in such a disjointed way that we asked her to repeat it so that we could understand. Synonyms: confused, disconnected, incoherent, rambling to allow or cause to leave; to reject
She dismissed the proposal, saying that it would be too expensive to carry out.
Synonyms: discharge, release, send away; disregard to speak of slightingly; to lessen the reputation of

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Do not disparage your elders; they worked hard to build this community.
Synonyms: belittle, depreciate

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 112

[ 112 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D

disparate
(DIS-puhr-uht)

dissemble
(di-SEM-buhl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

disseminate
(di-SE-muh-neyt)

[ 113 ]

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D essentially different
The four musicians brought together their disparate talents and ideas to make a wild and beautiful collection of songs.
Synonyms: dissimilar, diverse, various

to put on a false appearance
The children tried to dissemble innocence, but the crumbs on their face gave them away.
Synonyms: conceal, feign, simulate

to scatter, spread around
Please disseminate the news; I want everyone to know about my candidacy.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: advertise, broadcast, disperse, publish 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 114

[ 114 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D dissident (DI-suh-duhnt)

dissolution
(DI-suh-loo-shuhn)

dissonance

GRE VO CABULA RY

(DI-suh-nuhns)

[ 115 ]

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D disagreeing with an established belief or organization Under the rule of the dictator, people kept their dissident ideas to themselves.
Synonyms: heretical, nonconforming, unorthodox

the act or process of falling apart
The dissolution of their marriage was unexpected; they had seemed so happy.
Synonyms: disintegration, rupture, separation

the clashing of ideas or sounds
The music included much dissonance, and I left the concert hall with a headache.
Synonyms: conflict, disagreement, discord

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 116

[ 116 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D distend (dis-TEND)

distill
(dis-TIL)

divest

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dahy-VEST)

[ 117 ]

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D to expand, swell
Ironically, their distended bellies are a sign of their great hunger.
Synonyms: bloat, bulge, enlarge

to extract the essence of
The professor could distill complex ideas into a simple diagram or statement.
Synonyms: concentrate, purify, refine

to strip, deprive, or free from
He divested himself of most of his wealth and went off to live in the woods.
Synonyms: dismantle, dispossess, seize

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 118

[ 118 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D divulge (dahy-VUHLJ)

doctrinaire
(dok-truh-NAIR)

dogmatic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(dawg-MA-tik)

[ 119 ]

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D to make a secret known
She refused to divulge what her sister had told her that evening.
Synonyms: admit, disclose, tell

fanatic about a doctrine or theory
A doctrinaire libertarian, she refused to pay any taxes.
Synonyms: dogmatic, fanatical, impractical, inflexible taken to expressing opinions as though they were facts

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

She was turned off by his dogmatic assertions that reading his book would completely transform her life.
Synonyms: fanatical, opinionated

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 120

[ 120 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

D dormant (DAWR-muhnt)

dross
(dros)

dupe

GRE VO CABULA RY

(doop)

[ 121 ]

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D inactive, asleep
It is hard to believe that the tulip bulbs lie dormant in the earth under the winter snow.
Synonyms: inert, latent, potential

waste, something that is inferior
The art show was so full of dross that his beautiful piece stood out.
Synonyms: refuse, scum, trash

one who is easily deceived or fooled
He was a dupe to believe all of her lies.
Synonyms: chump, fool

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 122

[ 122 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E ebullient (i-BOOL-yuhnt)

eccentric
(ek-SEN-trik)

eclectic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(e-KLEK-tik)

[ 123 ]

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E lively, enthusiastic
We soon were all carried away by her ebullient mood. Synonyms: buoyant, high-spirited, vivacious

unconventional, irregular
Her staid outfits contrasted with her eccentric ideas. Synonyms: odd, unusual, whimsical

choosing from a variety of sources; composed of a variety of styles, methods, or ideas
His taste in music was eclectic, including everything from opera to free jazz.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: assorted, diverse, varied

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 124

[ 124 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E effervescence (e-fuhr-VE-sens)

effete
(e-FEET)

efficacy

GRE VO CABULA RY

(EH-fi-kuh-see)

[ 125 ]

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 125

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E liveliness Her effervescence was not appropriate for the solemn occasion.
Synonyms: enthusiasm, excitement

without strength or character
The young men longed for war so that they could prove they had not grown effete.
Synonyms: decadent, degenerate, sterile

the ability to produce the desired effect
Her efficacy was astonishing; within three days she got the project back on track.
Synonyms: capability, competence, effectiveness

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 126

[ 126 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E effrontery (i-FRUHN-tuh-ree)

elegy
(E-luh-jee)

elicit

GRE VO CABULA RY

(i-LI-suht)

[ 127 ]

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E shameless boldness
He had the effrontery to demand a full refund, simply because he had not liked one of the performers. Synonyms: arrogance, disrespect, insolence

a poem or song expressing sorrow at the loss of one who has died
After the poet read the elegy for her mother, not an eye was dry of tears.
Synonyms: lament, requiem

to draw or bring out
Her pointed questions elicited thoughtful replies. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: evoke, obtain

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 128

[ 128 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E elixir (i-LIK-suhr)

eloquent
(EH-luh-kwuhnt)

(i-MEY-shee-ey-tuhd)

GRE VO CABULA RY

emaciated

[ 129 ]

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E a sweetened mixture of alcohol and water having medicinal qualities
He made a fortune selling an elixir that he claimed could preserve youth.
Synonyms: medicine, solution

beautifully and fluently expressive
She wrote an eloquent letter to thank her aunt for the gift.
Synonyms: articulate, expressive

made thin and week
The cat was emaciated when we found her, but now she is healthy though a bit plump.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: haggard, skinny, starved, wasted

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 130

[ 130 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E

embellish
(im-BE-lish)

emollient
(i-MOL-yuhnt)

empirical

GRE VO CABULA RY

(im-PIR-i-kuhl)

[ 131 ]

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

E to add ornamentation
He embellished the story with little exaggerations to make it more interesting.
Synonyms: adorn, decorate, enhance

having the power to soothe or make soft and supple The midwife’s emollient words encouraged the woman in labor.
Synonyms: healing, soothing; lotion, salve

based on observation or experience without resorting to theory
Your arguments are too theoretical; only empirical evidence will persuade me.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: experimental, observed, practical

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 132

[ 132 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E emulate (EM-yuh-leyt)

encomium
(en-KOH-mee-uhm)

endemic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(en-DEM-ik)

[ 133 ]

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 133

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E to try to equal or excel; to imitate
He had no desire to emulate his novelist father and instead became an accountant.
Synonyms: compete, follow, rival

praise, an expression of praise
The encomium from all the critics in the world did not matter so much to her as the praise her teacher heaped on her little book.
Synonyms: accolade, tribute

characteristic of or prevalent in a group of people or region
The Joshua tree is endemic to the Mojave
Desert; it grows nowhere else.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: aboriginal, local, regional

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 134

[ 134 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E enervate (E-nuhr-veyt)

engender
(en-JEN-duhr)

enhance

GRE VO CABULA RY

(en-HANS)

[ 135 ]

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E to reduce the strength of
The heat and humidity enervated her so much that she did not even try to accomplish anything on that day.
Synonyms: debilitate, enfeeble, weaken

to bring into existence
His unclear directions engendered confusion.
Synonyms: beget, generate, originate, produce

to improve in quality, desirability, or value
Her new hairstyle did much to enhance her appearance. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: augment, embellish, improve, intensify 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 136

[ 136 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E

enigmatic
(e-nig-MA-tik)

ennui
(ahn-WEE)

enunciate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ee-NUHN-see-eyt)

[ 137 ]

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 137

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E puzzling, mysterious
He lay in bed that night trying to sort out the meaning of her enigmatic good-bye.
Synonyms: ambiguous, perplexing

a feeling of weariness
Despite the wealth of opportunities available to me, I could not shake the feeling of ennui at the very thought of starting another job.
Synonyms: boredom, dullness, languor

to pronounce clearly; to announce
I will enunciate my intentions only after my plans are settled.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: articulate; declare, proclaim

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 138

[ 138 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E ephemeral (i-FEM-uh-ruhl)

equanimity
(e-kwuh-NI-muh-tee)

equivocate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(i-KWI-vuh-keyt)

[ 139 ]

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E lasting a short time
Pleasure may be ephemeral, but so is pain.
Synonyms: brief, fleeting, momentary, passing

mental stability under stress
The secret to her equanimity was that no matter how much she had to do, she always got enough sleep.
Synonyms: calmness, composure, equilibrium, serenity to speak without committing oneself
When I ask this next question, don’t equivocate; just say directly what is on your mind.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: dodge, evade, prevaricate

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 140

[ 140 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E errant (EH-ruhnt)

erudite
(ER-yuh-dahyt)

eschew

GRE VO CABULA RY

(e-SHOO)

[ 141 ]

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 141

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E given to wandering; tending to err
The errant child soon lost her way.
Synonyms: meandering, rambling, straying; fallible learned
The professor was erudite, not only in her own field of scholarship but also in twentiethcentury poetry.
Synonyms: educated, knowledgeable, studious

to avoid, especially for ethical or practical reasons A strict vegetarian, she eschews eggs and dairy products in addition to meat and fish.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: abstain, renounce, shun

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 142

[ 142 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E essay (e-SEY)

esoteric
(e-suh-TEH-rik)

estimable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ES-tuh-muh-buhl)

[ 143 ]

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 143

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E to attempt, to try
I have essayed neither rock climbing nor sky diving, and probably never will try either activity.
Synonyms: test, undertake

known only by the initiated
The symbolism of the Tarot is hardly as esoteric as you might think.
Synonyms: arcane, hidden, occult

capable of being estimated; worthy of respect
We practiced hard that week to prepare to face an estimable opponent.
Synonyms: admirable, reputable, respectable

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 144

[ 144 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E eulogy (YOO-luh-jee)

euphemism
(YOO-fuh-mi-zuhm)

evanescent

GRE VO CABULA RY

(e-vuh-NEH-suhnt)

[ 145 ]

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E a speech or piece of writing given in honor of someone who has died
Each of his five sons gave a brief and moving eulogy at his funeral.
Synonyms: tribute

the use of a neutral or vague word or phrase to replace a word or phrase that might offend or seem harsh or unpleasant
“To pass away” is a common euphemism for
“to die.”
Synonyms: circumlocution, delicacy, pretense

like vapor, tending to fade or vanish

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Young people do not know just how evanescent youth is.
Synonyms: fleeting, passing, temporary, transient

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 146

[ 146 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E evince (i-VINS)

evocative
(i-VO-kuh-tiv)

GRE VO CABULA RY

exacerbate
(ig-ZA-suhr-beyt)

[ 147 ]

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

E to give evidence of, reveal
That he was able to read when he was only three years old evinced his intelligence and eagerness to learn.
Synonyms: demonstrate, display, indicate, manifest, show

tending to call forth or suggest emotion or ideas Though the paintings were abstract, they were evocative of desert landscapes.
Synonyms: expressive, suggestive

to make worse

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The couple was deep in debt, and so the loss of her job only exacerbated their problems.
Synonyms: aggravate, infuriate, intensify

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 148

[ 148 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E

exact
(ig-ZAKT)

execrable
(EK-si-kruh-buhl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

exculpate
(EK-skuhl-peyt)

[ 149 ]

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E to call for and obtain, demand
The coach was so successful because she exacted the best effort from her teams.
Synonyms: compel, require

detestable, very bad
He was sentenced to a life in prison for his execrable crimes.
Synonyms: abominable, disgusting, horrible, loathsome to clear from guilt or blame
Not only was she exculpated of the charge that she had cheated on the test, but her teacher apologized profusely.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: absolve, exonerate, vindicate

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 150

[ 150 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E exhort (ig-ZORT)

existential
(eg-zi-STEN-shuhl)

exigency

GRE VO CABULA RY

(EK-suh-juhn-see)

[ 151 ]

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E to advise or urge strongly
Though he exhorted his students to attend his evening study sessions, they were poorly attended. Synonyms: admonish, beseech, encourage, recommend having to do with being and existence
The philosopher’s concerns were existential; she questioned how and why human life came to be.

that which is necessary in a given situation; an urgent situation

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

He was ill prepared for the exigencies of life abroad. Synonyms: necessity, requirement; crisis, emergency 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 152

[ 152 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E

exonerate
(ig-ZO-nuh-reyt)

expiate
(EK-spee-eyt)

explicate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(EKS-pli-keyt)

[ 153 ]

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E to clear from blame; to relieve of a responsibility
We were relieved to be exonerated of our cleaning duties that weekend.
Synonyms: absolve, exonerate, vindicate; discharge, liberate

to make amends
To expiate for their vandalism, they painted a beautiful mural over the graffiti.
Synonyms: atone, compensate, rectify

to explain in detail
In her term paper, she explicated the meaning of The Rime of the Ancient Mariner by Samuel
Taylor Coleridge.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: analyze, clarify, interpret

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 154

[ 154 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

E

expository
(ik-SPO-zuh-taw-ree)

extemporaneous
(ek-stem-puh-REY-nee-uhs)

extirpate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(EK-stuhr-peyt)

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E conveying information or explanations
She enjoyed expository writing so much that she decided to pursue a career as a journalist.
Synonyms: explanatory, informative

made, done, or said at the spur of the moment
His extemporaneous speech was both funnier and more moving than his colleague’s carefully planned one.
Synonyms: impromptu, improvised, unrehearsed

to destroy at the roots
The new police chief was determined to extirpate crime from the city.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: annihilate, demolish, eradicate, exterminate, extinguish

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 156

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

E extraneous (ek-STREY-nee-uhs)

extrapolate
(ik-STRA-puh-leyt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

extrinsic
(ek-STRIN-zik)

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E coming from without, extra
Address the main topic only; leave out any extraneous details, however entertaining they might be.
Synonyms: additional, external, foreign, superfluous, unessential

to infer, predict, or project based on given information Be careful not to extrapolate too wildly from the survey results; stick close to the data.
Synonyms: conclude, envision

originating from without

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The movie reminded the critic of his childhood, but he recognized that these memories were extrinsic to the quality of the film itself.
Synonyms: external, extraneous, unessential

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

F facetious (fuh-SEE-shuhs)

facilitate
(fuh-SI-luh-teyt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

fallacy
(FA-luh-see)

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F not serious, inappropriately jokey
The facetious tone of the guide regarding first aid was at odds with the serious of its purpose.
Synonyms: amusing, frivolous, humorous

to make easier
To facilitate the discussion, please raise your hand if you wish to speak.
Synonyms: aid, assist, expedite, promote

a deceptive or mistaken idea or belief
It is a fallacy to believe that humans evolved from chimpanzees; we do share a common ancestor, however.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: delusion, error, misconception

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[ 160 ]

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F fallow (FA-loh)

fatuous
(FA-choo-uhs)

fawning

GRE VO CABULA RY

(FAW-ning)

[ 161 ]

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F left uncultivated, inactive
The farmer let that field lie fallow this year so that it would not be depleted.
Synonyms: dormant, idle, resting

foolish
His fatuous comments during the interview made him seem untrustworthy, and so he was not hired.
Synonyms: idiotic, mindless, ridiculous, silly

showing affection or seeking favor through flattery G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Unable to trust the fawning attitudes of those around her, the celebrity relied on her family and oldest friends.
Synonyms: flattering, ingratiating, pandering

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F felicitous (fi-LI-suh-tuhs)

fervent
(FUHR-vuhnt)

filibuster

GRE VO CABULA RY

(FI-luh-buh-stuhr)

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F well expressed or well suited
Her felicitous remarks put the students at ease before the test.
Synonyms: apt, appropriate

intense
His fervent admiration of her went unreturned; she found him uninteresting.
Synonyms: ardent, heartfelt, passionate

the use of obstruction to prevent action, especially the passage of a law
Due to the filibuster by just one senator, there was no vote on the bill.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: delay, hindrance, interference, opposition 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 164

[ 164 ]

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F flag (flag)

fledgling
(FLEJ-ling)

flout

GRE VO CABULA RY

(flout)

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F to lose interest or spirit
Seeing that their enthusiasm for the hike was flagging, the guide decided that it was time to take a break.
Synonyms: dwindle, slump, wane

a beginner
I am learning Chinese, but I’m just a fledgling speaker, having studied the language for only six months.
Synonyms: novice, rookie

to neglect or treat with scorn
She showed her disrespect for her teachers by flouting their rules.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: distain, disregard, insult

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F foment (foh-MENT)

forestall
(fohr-STAWL)

fortuitous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(fawr-TOO-uh-tuhs)

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F to promote the growth of
The newspaper editor was accused of fomenting rebellion by publishing stories that were highly critical of the government.
Synonyms: agitate, cultivate, encourage, foster

to hinder or delay
The actions that the police took to forestall a riot might actually have caused it to occur.
Synonyms: prevent, thwart

lucky, happening by a lucky chance
The weather on the day of the marathon could not have been more fortuitous: partly cloudy and cool but not humid.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: accidental, fortunate

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F

fractious
(FRAK-shuhs)

frugality
(froo-GA-luh-tee)

fulminate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(fuhl-muh-NEYT)

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F tending to be quarrelsome or troublesome
The boys had a reputation for being fractious, but I never saw them be anything other than polite and well behaved.
Synonyms: unruly, rebellious, wayward, wild

the tendency to be sparing with money and other resources, not wasteful
Her tendency to indulge in expensive shoes contrasted with her frugality in all other matters.
Synonyms: conservation, economy, prudence

to denounce strongly
The preacher fulminated against gambling and other forms of idleness and waste.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: attack, condemn, criticize

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F fulsome (FUHL-sum)

furtive
(FUHR-tiv)

(FYOO-tuhl or FYOO-tahyl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

futile

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F characterized by excess
The fulsome celebration disgusted her; she would have preferred to enjoy her birthday quietly with family.
Synonyms: excessive, extravagant, grandiloquent done secretly or in an underhanded way
They stole many furtive glances into the guarded room but saw nothing.
Synonyms: cunning, sly, stealthy

useless
Their efforts to build a dam were futile, and their home was completely flooded.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: hopeless, ineffective, pointless

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G gainsay (GEYN-sey)

garrulous
(GAR-uh-luhs)

gauche

GRE VO CABULA RY

(gohsh)

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G to declare to be untrue
You cannot gainsay the fact that though he has much more to learn, he has improved a great deal.
Synonyms: contradict, deny, dispute, oppose

talkative, generally in a rambling or annoying way I was hoping to rest during the flight, but unfortunately I was seated next to a garrulous young man.
Synonyms: diffuse, verbose, wordy

lacking good manners or tact, especially due to a lack of experience

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

I am embarrassed to think how gauche it was for me to have brought up that sensitive topic in the middle of the dinner party.
Synonyms: awkward, crude, insensitive, maladroit 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 174

[ 174 ]

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G genial (JEE-nyuhl)

germane
(juhr-MEYN)

GRE VO CABULA RY

glib
(glib)

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G friendly, sympathetic
His genial manners were the result of great effort, as he actually tended to be rather grouchy. Synonyms: cheerful, cordial, easygoing, gracious, kind

relevant, appropriate
Because your concerns are germane to the topic of the meeting, I would like to ask you to speak first.
Synonyms: applicable, connected, fitting, related informal, without thought or sincerity

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

His glib comment might have been insulting, except that everyone knew that he generally did not mean what he said.
Synonyms: flip, offhand, slick

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G

goad
(gohd)

grandiloquence

GRE VO CABULA RY

(gran-DI-luh-kwuhns)

gregarious
(gri-GAR-ee-uhs)

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G to urge
He might have quit years ago if his brother had not goaded him on.
Synonyms: encourage, incite, stimulate

lofty or extravagant manner, especially in speech The children giggled at the grandiloquence of the principal’s speech on the first day of school; it would have been better for him to speak more simply.
Synonyms: bombast, grandiosity, pomposity

tending to be social

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

A gregarious young woman, she held dinner parties at her home every Friday.
Synonyms: convivial, friendly, outgoing

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[ 178 ]

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G guileless (GAHYL-uhs)

guise
(gahyz)

GRE VO CABULA RY

gullible
(GUH-luh-buhl)

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G innocent, without deceit
His phone call to his ex-girlfriend was truly guileless; he simply wanted to know whether or not she was well.
Synonyms: honest, frank, sincere, straightforward

appearance; style of dress
The spy gained entry to the office in the guise of a job applicant.
Synonyms: facade, posture, pretense

easily duped
I hope that you are not so gullible as to believe a single word of his tall tales.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: naive, trusting

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H hackneyed (HAK-need)

halcyon
(HAL-see-uhn)

hallowed

GRE VO CABULA RY

(HA-lohd)

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H lacking originality
The critics panned the film because of its hackneyed boy-meets-girl plot.
Synonyms: banal, cliche, stale, trite

calm, peaceful
I love the halcyon days of mid-August, while we are still on vacation and before the mad rush of preparations for school begins.
Synonyms: soothing, tranquil

holy, sacred
The cemetery grounds are hallowed by those who are buried there.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: blessed, venerated

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H harangue (huh-RANG)

harrowing
(HAR-oh-ing)

hedonism

GRE VO CABULA RY

(HEE-duh-ni-zuhm)

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H a rant
We were taken aback by his bitter harangue against youth.
Synonyms: diatribe, jeremiad, tirade

extremely distressing or difficult
Watching the horror movie was harrowing to her; she had no idea how her boyfriend could have enjoyed it.
Synonyms: distressing, excruciating, grievous, terrifying devotion to pleasure, the doctrine that pleasure is the greatest good
The hedonism of fraternity life enticed him.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: debauchery, indulgence

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[ 184 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

H hegemony (hi-JE-muh-nee)

heretical
(huh-RE-ti-kuhl)

heterodox

GRE VO CABULA RY

(HE-tuh-ruh-doks)

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H pervasive influence or authority
The cultural hegemony of the United States reaches every corner of the world.
Synonyms: command, domination, power

departing from accepted beliefs, characterized by heresy
In the Middle Ages, it was dangerous to profess heretical beliefs.
Synonyms: dissident, unorthodox

contrary to an accepted standard, tradition, or belief, especially in religion

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

She holds the heterodox view that the capacity for empathy evolved in humans before language did.
Synonyms: dissident, unconventional, unorthodox

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H homogeneous (hoh-muh-JEE-nee-uhs or hoh-muh-JEE-nyuhs) hubris
(HYOO-bris)

hyperbole

GRE VO CABULA RY

(hahy-PUHR-buh-lee)

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H
It took some time for him to get used to the homogeneous population of his new home; he was accustomed to the diversity of the city.
Synonyms: alike, consistent, uniform

arrogance, pride
It takes a certain amount of hubris to run for the office of the president of the United States.
Synonyms: audacity, presumption, vanity

composed of parts that are all alike; extravagant and intentional exaggeration
His claim that it took him years to read the book was hyperbole; it actually took him only two weeks to finish.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: embellishment, hype, overstatement

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I

iconoclast
(ahy-KO-nuh-klast)

idolatry
(ahy-DO-luh-tree)

imbroglio

GRE VO CABULA RY

(im-BROHL-yoh)

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I one who attacks accepted beliefs or institutions Charles Darwin delayed publication of the work introducing his theory of evolution for years, perhaps anticipating that he would be seen as an iconoclast.
Synonyms: dissident, heretic, radical, rebel

excessive or blind devotion
Her devotion to the pop star bordered on idolatry; her bedroom was covered with images of him cut from magazines.
Synonyms: adoration, adulation, fervor

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

a complicated situation or painful misunderstanding, scandal
The election devolved into an imbroglio, in which each side accused the other of fraud.
Synonyms: brouhaha, dispute, quandary

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

I

imminent
(I-muh-nuhnt)

immutable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(i-MYOO-tuh-buhl)

impair
(im-PAIR)

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I ready or about to occur
Her departure is imminent—ask her now!
Synonyms: approaching, forthcoming, impending

not subject to change
They proclaimed their immutable devotion to each other in their wedding vows.
Synonyms: constant, enduring, permanent, perpetual, unchangeable

to damage
Better to wear the ugly safety goggles than to suffer an injury that could impair your vision.
Synonyms: diminish, harm, hurt, injure

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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[ 192 ]

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I impassive (im-PA-siv)

impecunious
(im-pi-KYU-nee-uhs)

impede

GRE VO CABULA RY

(im-PEED)

[ 193 ]

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I not subject to pain, without feeling or emotion
Though he seemed impassive at the collapse of his company, his wife could see that he was in despair.
Synonyms: apathetic, dispassionate, stoic, unmoved having little or no money
The impecunious poet believed he was far happier than the wealthiest businessperson.
Synonyms: destitute, impoverished, penniless, poor to hinder, get in the way of

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

An unexpected visit from friends from out of town impeded on her plan to paint the living room. Synonyms: hamper, interfere, obstruct

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[ 194 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

I

impermeable
(im-PUHR-mee-uh-buhl)

imperturbable
(im-puhr-TUHR-buh-buhl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

impervious
(im-PUHR-vee-uhs)

[ 195 ]

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I incapable of being penetrated or passed through The jacket is coated with a substance that renders it impermeable by water.
Synonyms: impassable, impervious

incapable of being disturbed
By maintaining an imperturbable air throughout the crisis, she emerged as a steady and trustworthy leader.
Synonyms: calm, composed, immovable, unexcited not allowing entrance, incapable of being harmed or disturbed

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

He was impervious to criticism, which enabled him to experiment freely in his artwork.
Synonyms: immune, resistant, unaffected

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

I impetuous (im-PE-chuh-wuhs)

implacable
(im-PLA-kuh-buhl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

implausible
(im-PLAW-zi-buhl)

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I passionately impulsive
Her impetuous decision to go to Brazil took a moment to make, and transformed her life forever. Synonyms: impassionate, spontaneous, unexpected impossible to appease
Although the team had been eliminated from contention in the playoffs, it proved to be an implacable opponent.
Synonyms: inflexible, merciless, relentless, uncompromising, unyielding

unbelievable

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

He might have gotten away with the prank if his cover story had not been so implausible.
Synonyms: improbable, inconceivable, incredible, unreasonable

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[ 198 ]

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I

implicit
(im-PLI-suht)

implode

GRE VO CABULA RY

(im-PLOHD)

impunity
(im-PYOO-nuh-tee)

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I implied, existing as a potential within
Implicit in the many warnings that preceded their trip was the fact that their destination was a dangerous place.
Synonyms: understood, latent

to violently collapse inward
The building suddenly imploded under the weight of the snow.
Synonyms: cave in, fold

freedom from punishment or harm
Because his father was the headmaster, he thought he could break the rules with impunity.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: freedom, license, privilege

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[ 200 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

I

inadvertent
(in-uhd-VUHR-tuhnt)

inchoate
(in-KOH-uht)

incipient

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-SI-pee-uhnt)

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I unintentional, characterized by lack of thought or attention
The error was both inadvertent and catastrophic.
Synonyms: careless, negligent, thoughtless

not yet developed, incompletely formed
The first draft of her novel was an inchoate mess; with two years of revision she transformed it into a masterpiece.
Synonyms: amorphous, formless, incoherent, rudimentary coming into being

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

At this time, our travel plans are only incipient; check with us again next week and we will be able to tell you exactly where we are going and when.
Synonyms: developing, inchoate, nascent

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I incongruous (in-KON-gruh-wuhs)

inconsequential
(in-kon-suh-KWEN-shuhl)

incorporate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-KOR-puh-reyt)

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I out of place, lacking harmony, inconsistent
Her genius was such that she could compose a work for such incongruous instruments as a banjo and saxophone and have it sound not just beautiful, but inspired.
Synonyms: conflicting, discordant, incompatible

unimportant
The paper was so brilliant that the few lapses in spelling and punctuation were inconsequential.
Synonyms: insignificant, irrelevant, negligible, trivial to include, to unite in one body; to embody

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

I will incorporate your ideas into the next draft of the plan.
Synonyms: assimilate, combine, integrate

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[ 204 ]

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I

indeterminate
(in-di-TUHR-muh-nuht)

indifferent
(in-DI-fruhnt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

indigence
(IN-di-juhnts)

[ 205 ]

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I not fixed or defined, vague
The CEO was of an indeterminate age: she had gray hair and a lined face but spoke and moved with the energy of a teenager.
Synonyms: indefinite, uncertain, undetermined, unsettled

unbiased; not interested or concerned
Indifferent to the results of the election, many voters stayed home.
Synonyms: detached, disinterested, unconcerned; apathetic

complete poverty

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After losing what little they had in the earthquake, the villagers were left in a state of indigence. Synonyms: destitution, need, privation, want

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[ 206 ]

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I

indolent
(IN-duh-luhnt)

inert
(i-NUHRT)

GRE VO CABULA RY

infelicitous
(in-fi-LI-suh-tuhs)

[ 207 ]

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I lazy He was accused of being indolent when in truth he lacked energy because of illness.
Synonyms: idle, inactive, slothful, sluggish

having no power to act or move
Inert and silent as rocks, the children sat and watched TV.
Synonyms: dormant, inactive, motionless

not appropriate, awkward
Your joke about divorce was especially infelicitous, considering that our hostess and her husband have just separated.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: inapt, inappropriate, unfortunate, unsuitable 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 208

[ 208 ]

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I ingenuous (in-JEN-yuh-wuhs)

inherent
(in-HEHR-uhnt)

inimical

GRE VO CABULA RY

(i-NI-mi-kuhl)

[ 209 ]

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I characterized by childlike innocence or sincerity
When she brought a bouquet of wildflowers to thank him, the ingenuous gesture won her his devotion. Synonyms: artless, candid, naive

essential to the character or nature of
Human babies have inherent needs to suckle and be held.
Synonyms: characteristic, fundamental, intrinsic, innate hostile, like an enemy
Poor hygiene is inimical to good health.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: adverse, opposed, unfriendly, unwelcoming 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 210

[ 210 ]

5/10/11 2:55 PM

I innocuous (i-NO–kyuh-wuhs)

insensible
(in-SEN-suh-buhl)

insinuate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-SIN-yuh-weyt)

[ 211 ]

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I harmless, unlikely to offend
The dog looked fierce, but she was as innocuous as a gerbil.
Synonyms: innocent, inoffensive, unobjectionable

not able to feel or perceive; unaware
Insensible to the boredom of his students, the professor droned on and on.
Synonyms: indifferent, oblivious, unconscious, unfeeling to introduce in a subtle or gradual way; to imply Do you mean to insinuate that it was I who took the cookies from the kitchen?

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: allude, intimate, mention

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I insipid (in-SI-puhd)

insularity
(in-syuh-LA-ruh-tee)

intangible

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-TAN-juh-buhl)

[ 213 ]

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I lacking taste, dull
He may have been a charming performer, but the music he played was insipid and full of clichés. Synonyms: banal, inane, vapid

isolation; narrow-mindedness
The insularity of her views was understandable—if you considered just how little of the world she had seen.
Synonyms: bigotry, parochialism, provinciality

not tangible, incapable of being touched
The things she loved best were intangible: sunny mornings and moonlit nights.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: immaterial, impalpable, incorporeal

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I interpolate (in-TUHR-puh-leyt)

intimate
(IN-tuh-meyt)

intractable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-TRAK-tuh-buhl)

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I to add words into a conversation or text
While listening to them discuss the movie, he couldn’t help but interpolate with his enthusiasm for the acting.
Synonyms: inject, insert, interject

to communicate indirectly
Did you mean to intimate that I do not deserve the job?
Synonyms: hint, imply, suggest

not easily managed, manipulated, or cured

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The child’s difficulties in school had grown to seem intractable, but all it took to help her was a new teacher who encouraged her to read about topics that interested her.
Synonyms: obstinate, stubborn

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I

intransigent
(in-TRAN-si-juhnt)

introspection
(in-truh-SPEK-shuhn)

intrepid

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-TRE-puhd)

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I refusing to compromise
The congressman made a big show of being intransigent on the issue of budget cuts, but quickly changed his position after seeing the results of the poll.
Synonyms: inflexible, obstinate, resolute, stubborn, tenacious

looking inward at one’s own thoughts and feelings Arlo generally spent the last hour of each day in quiet introspection, sometimes listening to music and sometimes writing in his journal.
Synonyms: contemplation, reflection

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

courageous
The men who attempted to be the first to the
South Pole were all intrepid explorers, but not all of them were fortunate, and some died in the attempt.
Synonyms: bold, brave, fearless

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I

inundate
(I-nuhn-deyt)

inured

GRE VO CABULA RY

(i-NYOORD)

invective
(in-VEK-tiv)

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I to flood or overwhelm
After her controversial speech, the mayor’s office was inundated with letters, both pro and con. Synonyms: bury, drown, engulf, immerse, overflow, submerge

accustomed to difficulty or pain
By the middle of January, we were inured to the darkness and cold of the northern winter.
Synonyms: hardened, toughened

abusive language

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The invective she heaped on her colleague was completely out of proportion with the small error she had made.
Synonyms: berating, diatribe, tirade

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I

inveigh
(in-VEY)

inveigle
(in-VEY-guhl)

inveterate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(in-VEH-tuh-ruht)

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I to protest or complain
Several teachers wrote letters to the editor to inveigh against the proposed school budget cuts. Synonyms: admonish, denounce

to win over or obtain
The twins tried every trick in the book to inveigle permission from their parents to go to bed later.
Synonyms: beguile, entice, manipulate, wheedle

firmly established as a habit, practice, or feeling
An inveterate gambler, he gradually lost everything he owned over the course of a decade.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

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I irascible (i-RA-suh-buhl)

irresolute
(i-RE-zuh-loot)

itinerant

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ahy-TI-nuh-ruhnt)

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I having a hot temper, easily angered
To our surprise, our irascible neighbor lightened up after he adopted a stray dog.
Synonyms: cranky, fractious, grouchy, irritable, touchy not sure how to act
Herman was irresolute in all things, from deciding what to eat for breakfast to choosing which college to attend.
Synonyms: doubtful, hesitant, indecisive, tentative, uncertain, vacillating

going from place to place

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The itinerant preacher usually passed through our town in August.
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J jaundiced (JAWN-duhsd)

jocose
(juh-KOHS)

GRE VO CABULA RY

juggernaut
(juh-guhr-NAWT)

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J showing or feeling resentment or hostility
She walked around the gallery with a jaundiced air, bitter that her paintings were not among the work selected to be shown.
Synonyms: bitter, envious

tending to joke, characterized by joking
Your jocose spirits have certainly brightened my day!
Synonyms: humorous, jesting, merry, playful, witty a large and powerful movement or object that destroys anything in its path

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The radio personality became a political juggernaut that those in office had to reckon with.

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J junta (HOON-tuh)

juxtapose

GRE VO CABULA RY

(juhk-stuh-POHZ)

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J a group ruling a country after having seized power, a council
He was the only member of the junta who had not participated directly in the coup.
Synonyms: assembly, faction

to place together, side by side
She liked to juxtapose contrasting images in her poems.
Synonym: connect

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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K kudos GRE VO CABULA RY

(KOO-dohs)

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K fame earned or praise given for an accomplishment
Her colleagues gave her kudos for the welldeserved promotion.
Synonyms: credit, esteem

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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L laconic (luh-KO-nik)

lambaste
(lam-BAST)

lascivious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(luh-SI-vee-uhs)

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L using few words
His laconic replies of a sentence or two unfairly earned him a reputation for being rude.
Synonyms: brusque, concise, succinct

to attack violently or verbally
In the days leading up to the game, she lambasted her opponent with a series of insults and threats.
Synonyms: berate, censure

given to lust; arousing desire
Though they show nudes, these paintings are not intended to be lascivious.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: lewd, lustful, wanton

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L lassitude (LA-suh-tood)

laud
(lawd)

lethargic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(luh-THAHR-jik)

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L a lack of energy, weariness
Her lassitude during the winter contrasted greatly with her energy and high spirits during the spring and summer.
Synonyms: fatigue, languor, lethargy, listlessness to praise
At the award ceremony, the philanthropist was lauded for her generosity.
Synonyms: acclaim, celebrate, extol

drowsy, sluggish
We could not help but feel lethargic on that hot, humid, August afternoon.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: indolent, lazy, listless

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L

levee
(LEH-vee)

levity
(LEH-vi-tee)

liberal

GRE VO CABULA RY

(LI-buh-ruhl)

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L an embankment designed to prevent flooding
The levee held back the river, even through the record-breaking rainfall.
Synonyms: bank, dam

a lightness of character, attitude, or behavior
The professor’s jokes brought some levity to his discussion of the otherwise dull topic.
Synonyms: buoyancy, frivolity

characterized by generosity; not strict; tending to support political liberalism
As a philanthropist, he was liberal, often giving large gifts to his favorite causes.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: altruistic, benevolent; progressive

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L libertine (LI-buhr-teen)

libido
(luh-BEE-doh)

litany

GRE VO CABULA RY

(LI-tuh-nee)

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L a free thinker, one who is unbound by convention or morality
Though she was a serious student, she was a libertine when it came to food and wine.
Synonym: debauchee

sexual drive
He claimed that he had an uncontrollable libido, and could not therefore be expected to be faithful to just one girlfriend.
Synonyms: lust, passion

a lengthy account or recitation

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

To visit Mrs. Earnshaw was to subject oneself to a litany of complaints about everything— from her long-dead husband to the neighbor’s dog. Synonyms: catalogue, petition

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L log (lawg)

loquacious
(loh-KWEY-shuhs)

lucid

GRE VO CABULA RY

(LOO-suhd)

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L the record of a voyage or of other events or activities They studied the captain’s log in the hopes of discovering when and how the ship went astray. Synonyms: account, journal, register

tending to or characterized by excessive talk
Emily’s loquacious roommate constantly distracted her from her studies.
Synonyms: talkative, verbose, wordy

full of light; clear to the understanding

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

We were confident in our ability to complete the task after her lucid explanation of what needed to be done.
Synonyms: bright, brilliant, radiant, shining; evident, intelligible, obvious

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L

luminous
(LOO-muh-nuhs)

lustrous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(LUHS-truhs)

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L illuminated in or shining with light
The full moon cast a luminous path of light across the ocean to the horizon.
Synonyms: bright, brilliant, glowing, radiant, shining radiantly glowing
We polished the floors until they took on a lustrous sheen.
Synonyms: luminous, polished, shining

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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M
Machiavellian
(ma-kee-uh-VEH-lee-uhn)

machination
(ma-kuh-NEY-shun)

magnanimity

GRE VO CABULA RY

(mag-nuh-NI-mi-tee)

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M characterized by cunning and duplicity
Her plan to win the election was truly Machiavellian: she made many promises that she had no intention of keeping once she was in office.
Synonyms: deceitful, devious, unscrupulous

an artful or scheming act or design, which is aimed at an evil purpose
All his machinations were aimed at framing her for the crime that he himself had committed.
Synonyms: conspiracy, intrigue, strategem

the possession of a courageous spirit and noble mind

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Her magnanimity was such that she never gossiped or even worried what others said about her.
Synonyms: chivalry, generosity, philanthropy

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M malevolent (muh-LE-vuh-luhnt)

malign
(muh-LAHYN)

GRE VO CABULA RY

malinger
(muh-LING-guhr)

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M characterized by ill will or hatred
His angry glare gave away his malevolent intentions. Synonyms: evil, hateful, vicious, vindictive

to speak ill of, often falsely
They maligned her academic record with false reports of her cheating.
Synonyms: defame, misrepresent, slander

to pretend illness in order to avoid an obligation or work
His malingering cost him the friendships of many whom he had let down.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: dodge, evade, shirk

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M malleable (MA-lee-uh-buhl)

martial
(MAHR-shuhl)

maverick

GRE VO CABULA RY

(MAV-rik)

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M capable of being shaped or influenced
Her opinions were so malleable that she tended to agree with whomever she had spoken to most recently.
Synonyms: adaptable, pliable, supple, yielding

having to do with war or military life
His years in the Marines were apparent in his martial bearing.
Synonyms: military, soldierly, warlike

an independent or dissenting individual

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The senator’s reputation for being a maverick was unearned; he tended to vote with his party. Synonyms: dissenter, nonconformist

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M menagerie (muh-NA-juh-ree)

mendacious
(men-DEY-shuhs)

mercurial

GRE VO CABULA RY

(muhr-KYOOR-ee-uhl)

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M a collection of animals or the place where they are exhibited; a varied group of people
Over the past century, this zoo has grown from the menagerie of its original benefactor to a great research institution.
Synonyms: collection, exhibition

dishonest
Though the widely spread rumor of his affair was proven to be mendacious, it ruined his political career.
Synonyms: deceitful, false, insincere

characterized by quickly changing moods

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The toddler’s mercurial temperament improved when he began to nap more regularly.
Synonyms: changeable, erratic, fickle, flighty, unpredictable, volatile

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M

mesmerize
(MEZ-muh-rahyz)

metamorphosis
(me-tuh-MAWR-fuh-suhs)

GRE VO CABULA RY

meticulous
(muh-TI-kyuh-luhs)

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M to hypnotize
The music mesmerized us with its repetitive, pulsing sounds.
Synonym: spellbind

a change in physical form, substance, or character, often through supernatural means
The summertime seemed to work a metamorphosis on her, as all her anxiety about her schoolwork was lifted.
Synonyms: mutation, rebirth, transformation

taking care of details

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Her meticulous approach to language served her well in her work as an editor.
Synonyms: exacting, finicky, fussy, painstaking, scrupulous, thorough

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M mettle (ME-tuhl)

militate
(MI-luh-teyt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

minuscule
(mi-nuh-SKYOOL)

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M strength of spirit or temperament
She showed her mettle by completing the marathon. Synonyms: courage, fortitude, stamina

to work against or fight
Though the issue was settled, they continued to militate against the mayor’s choice for a deputy. tiny
The type was so miniscule that she needed a magnifying glass to read it.
Synonyms: little, miniature, minute

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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M misanthrope (MI-suhn-throhp)

miscellany
(mi-suh-LEY-nee)

misogynist

GRE VO CABULA RY

(mi-SO-juh-nist)

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M one who tends to dislike or distrust humanity
The hermit was a misanthrope who preferred the company of trees to that of humans.
Synonyms: cynic, skeptic

a collection of different writings; a varied group The small volume was a miscellany of journal entries, haiku, and to-do lists.
Synonyms: assortment, hodgepodge

one who hates women
He was a misogynist who tried to pay female employees less than their male counterparts.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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M mitigate (MI-tuh-geyt)

mnemonic
(ni-MO-nik)

mollify

GRE VO CABULA RY

(MO-luh-fahy)

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M to make less hostile or severe
Though she knew that her phobia was irrational, little could be done to mitigate her fear of even the most harmless snakes.
Synonyms: allay, alleviate, assuage, ease, moderate, mollify

(adj.) helping the memory, related to memory
Acronyms like PEMDAS can be useful mnemonic devices.
(n.) something that aids the memory
I use the mnemonic PEMDAS to help me remember the order of operations: parentheses, exponents, multiplication and division, and addition and subtraction.
Synonyms: cue, hint, prompt, reminder

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

to soften the temper or feeling
The children’s sincere apology mollified their offended neighbor.
Synonyms: appease, mellow, mitigate, pacify, placate 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 258

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M monolithic (mo-nuh-LI-thik)

morose

GRE VO CABULA RY

(muh-ROHS)

mundane
(muhn-DEYN)

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M huge, forming one giant whole
The monolithic statues on Easter Island are haunting and mysterious.
Synonyms: colossal, enormous, massive

gloomy or sullen in mood or temperament
Hating the fact that he was only getting older, he was especially morose on his birthday.
Synonyms: dour, melancholy, pessimistic

earthly, practical, ordinary

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The philosopher could speak brilliantly and at length about the most abstract ideas, but had trouble taking care of such mundane matters as washing the dishes and paying the bills.
Synonyms: banal, common, everyday, prosaic, unimaginative 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 260

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N nascent (NEY-suhnt)

nebulous
(NE-byuh-luhs)

negate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ni-GEYT)

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N just coming into existence
The crocuses were the first sign of the nascent spring. Synonyms: burgeoning, fledgling, incipient

vague
He had only nebulous ideas of what type of profession he might like to pursue.
Synonyms: confused, hazy, indefinite, indistinct, unclear

to deny the truth or existence of; to make ineffective G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The teacher’s feedback is intended to help you improve your writing, and should not be seen as negating your effort or accomplishments.
Synonyms: annul, cancel, contradict, invalidate, nullify, refute

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N neologism (nee-O-luh-ji-zuhm)

neophyte
(NEE-uh-fahyt)

nostalgia

GRE VO CABULA RY

(nuh-STAL-juh)

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N a new word
The rapid development of technology in recent years has required the creation of many neologisms. Synonym: coinage

a beginner or new convert
Though he claimed to be an expert, he made the mistakes of a neophyte.
Synonyms: novice, recruit, rookie

a state of longing for the past
I always feel such nostalgia for my childhood home when I smell the scent of baking bread.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: homesickness, longing, yearning

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N

noxious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(NOK-shuhs)

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N poisonous or corrupting
The burning garbage emitted noxious fumes.
Synonyms: deadly, injurious, harmful, pernicious, toxic

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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O

obdurate
(OB-duh-ruht)

obfuscate
(OB-fuh-skeyt)

obsequious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uhb-SEE-kwee-uhs)

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O unyielding to persuasion or softening feelings; persistent in doing wrong
Though the evidence showed otherwise, he was obdurate in his belief that his employees were stealing from the till.
Synonyms: implacable, inflexible, obstinate, stubborn to confuse or make obscure
The more information he gave us in an attempt to clarify what he was saying, the more he actually obfuscated his meaning.
Synonyms: baffle, bewilder, conceal, perplex

characterized by fawning or servile attentiveness

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Your obsequious behavior is not going to earn you any favors from the teacher; it would be better simply to attend to your studies.
Synonyms: deferential, groveling, submissive, subservient 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 268

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

O

obstinate
(OB-stuh-nuht)

obtuse

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ob-TOOS)

obviate
(OB-vee-eyt)

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O persistent in a belief or behavior; not easily remedied, changed, or controlled
The obstinate toddler refused to wear shoes.
Synonyms: determined, dogged, stubborn, unyielding lacking quickness or insight in perception or intelligence I apologize for being so obtuse, but could you please explain the procedure one more time?
Synonyms: dense, dull, imperceptive, stupid

to prevent or make unnecessary through anticipation G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Our careful preparations for the move obviated the expense of having the movers help us pack.
Synonyms: avert, hinder, preclude

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O occlude (uh-KLOOD)

odious
(OH-dee-uhs)

officious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-FI-shuhs)

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O to block off or conceal
A lunar eclipse results when the Moon occludes the light from the Sun.
Synonyms: hinder, impede, obstruct

causing or deserving of hatred
After they were found guilty of vandalism, the teens were punished for their odious behavior.
Synonyms: detestable, disgusting, loathsome, offensive, repugnant

giving service where none was asked for
Her officious contributions to the project were more a hindrance than a help, and we ended up having to redo much of what she had done.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: intrusive, meddlesome, pushy

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O onerous (OH-nuhr-uhs)

opaque
(oh-PEYK)

opprobrium

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uh-PRO-bree-uhm)

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O burdensome The homework proved to be far less onerous than we had expected, and we finished it all in less than an hour.
Synonyms: arduous, oppressive, troublesome

blocking light, dark; difficult to understand
The reading assignment was only eight pages long, but the text was so opaque that it took me two hours to read it.
Synonyms: cloudy, impenetrable, murky; concealed, incomprehensible, obscure, unclear

public disgrace or something that causes disgrace G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Fearing the opprobrium that would result if his secrets were revealed, he quietly left town, never to return.
Synonyms: dishonor, disrepute, infamy

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O oscillate (O-suh-leyt)

ostentatious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(os-tuhn-TEY-shuhs)

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O to swing back and forth; to vary in opinions, beliefs, or conditions
After her busy week was over, she found herself oscillating between a fierce desire to go out dancing and a just as fierce desire to snuggle up in bed.
Synonyms: fluctuate, vacillate

characterized by showy or pretentious display
Her philanthropy always struck me as ostentatious: done to impress others rather than for the purpose of giving itself.
Synonyms: conspicuous, extravagant, flamboyant, flashy

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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P paean (PEE-uhn)

pallid

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PA-luhd)

paragon
(PAR-uh-gon)

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P a song of praise, thanksgiving, or triumph
Beethoven’s “Ode to Joy” is a paean to the kinship of all humanity.
Synonyms: anthem, hymn, laud, ode

lacking color or energy
Brad claimed that he felt just fine, but his pallid skin indicated otherwise.
Synonyms: dull, pale, wan

an example of excellence
As a student, Gina was thought to be a paragon, but her English teacher noticed that she excelled only because she refused to take any risks.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: epitome, exemplar, nonpareil, standard 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 278

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P parody (PAR-roh-dee)

partisan
(PAHR-tuh-zuhn)

pathological

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pa-thuh-LO-ji-kuhl)

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P a work of literature, music, theater, or film that imitates the style of another, for humorous or satirical effect
The seniors performed a parody of Hamlet that had us all in stiches.
Synonyms: caricature, spoof

committed to or biased toward a party, cause, or person
It seems that partisan politics are getting in the way of the ability of Congress to get anything done.
Synonyms: factional, partial, prejudiced

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

caused by or symptomatic of disease or mental disturbance
His dread of travel was so extreme as to seem pathological. 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 280

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P

paucity
(PAW-suh-tee)

pedagogy

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PEH-duh-goh-jee)

pedantic
(pi-DAN-tik)

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P scarcity The paucity of information about the region has led many myths to take hold about it and those who live there.
Synonyms: dearth, deficiency, lack

the art or science of teaching
A successful teacher needs both a thorough grounding in his or her subject area and a solid understanding of pedagogy.
Synonyms: education, study

ostentatious and unimaginative in one’s learning
You might excite more of your students if your approach to your subject were less pedantic.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: academic, didactic, scholastic

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P penchant (PEN-chuhnt)

penury
(PEN-yuh-ree)

peremptory

GRE VO CABULA RY

(puh-REMP-tuh-ree)

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P a strong inclination
With her penchant for working with her hands, she is likely to enjoy her new job at the botanic garden. Synonyms: fondness, liking, tendency

extreme poverty
He spent his childhood in a state of such penury that it affected his health for the rest of his life.
Synonyms: dearth, destitution, indigence, scarcity allowing of no contradiction; characterized by arrogance

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After his promotion, his peremptory attitude toward his former colleagues alienated them from him.
Synonyms: imperative, unconditional; dictatorial, imperious

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P perennial (puh-RE-nee-uhl)

perfidy

perfunctory
(puhr-FUHNGK-tuh-ree)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PUHR-fuh-dee)

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P lasting a long time, persistent, constant
Their perennial complaint was that management did not budget sufficient resources for them to do their work properly.
Synonyms: continuing, everlasting, perpetual, recurrent an act of disloyalty, treachery
His scoring a touchdown for the opposing team was not an act of perfidy so much as a stupid mistake.
Synonyms: betrayal, duplicity, infidelity

done in a routine, superficial, or indifferent way

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Maggie’s perfunctory greeting indicated that we were not the visitors she was hoping to see.
Synonyms: automatic, mechanical, offhand, unthinking 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 286

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P

permeable
(PUHR-mee-uh-buhl)

pernicious

perspicacious
(puhr-spuh-KAY-shuhs)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(puhr-NI-shuhs)

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P able to be permeated or penetrated
We cannot use this fabric to make a tent because it is permeable to water.
Synonyms: absorbent, penetrable, porous

destructive or deadly
These pernicious lies could ruin more than just your career.
Synonyms: detrimental, harmful, injurious, noxious, ruinous

extremely perceptive
The perspicacious child knew long before he was told that his mother was pregnant again.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: discerning, intelligent, keen, shrewd 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 288

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P perturb (puhr-TUHRB)

peruse
(puh-ROOZ)

pervade

GRE VO CABULA RY

(puhr-VEYD)

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P to disturb mentally
I was so perturbed by that movie that I had nightmares every night for more than a week afterward. Synonyms: agitate, derange, trouble, unsettle, upset to study with attention to detail; to look over casually Please peruse the report carefully before the meeting. Synonyms: analyze, examine, inspect; browse, scan, skim

to become spread throughout

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The scent of his heavy cologne pervaded every corner of the office.
Synonyms: diffuse, infuse, permeate

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P petulant (PE-chuh-luhnt)

phlegmatic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(fleg-MA-tik)

pious
(PAHY-uhs)

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P characterized by rudeness or ill humor
The petulant child just needed some rest; after her nap, she was perfectly cheerful.
Synonyms: crabby, fractious, grouchy, irritable, moody having an unexcitable or sluggish temperament
The brothers could not have been any more different: whereas Tom was loud and quick tempered, Tim was phlegmatic.
Synonyms: apathetic, dispassionate, indifferent, lethargic, unemotional

characterized by religious devotion or by conspicuous and hypocritical virtue

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Our pious neighbor goes to church every day.
Synonyms: devout, religious, reverent, righteous, sanctimonious, scrupulous

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P pine (payhn)

pirate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PAHY-ruht)

pithy
(PI-thee)

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P to long painfully, often for something unattainable; to waste away from grief
The new father pined for his family through his first day back to work after the birth of his child. Synonyms: grieve, yearn

to take or reproduce without the right to do so
We did not pirate the recordings; the band gave us permission to distribute their work.
Synonyms: copy, plagiarize, steal

brief and meaningful
Benjamin Franklin’s proverbs are pithy statements about living well.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: cogent, expressive, pointed, succinct, terse

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P

placate
(PLEY-keyt)

plaintive
(PLEYN-tiv)

plasticity

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pla-STI-suh-tee)

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P to calm or pacify, especially by giving concessions To placate the disappointed children, the teacher promised that the outing would be rescheduled for a time after the rain cleared.
Synonyms: appease, assuage, conciliate, mollify, soothe

expressing sorrow
The plaintive call of the loon seemed to be telling of our own sadness on the morning we left the lake for good.
Synonyms: melancholy, mournful

the capacity to be changed or molded

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The play dough lost much of its plasticity after just one day, and the following day it was as hard as a rock.
Synonyms: malleability, pliancy

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P

platitude
(PLA-tuh-tood)

plethora

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PLE-thuh-ruh)

plummet
(PLUH-muht)

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P a banal or trite statement
The fortune teller studied my palm and then uttered a series of platitudes that could be true for just about anyone.
Synonym: commonplace

an excess or abundance of
The plethora of fruits and vegetables at the farmers’ market overwhelmed us; we had no idea what to choose.
Synonyms: glut, surplus

to fall or drop sharply and suddenly

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

In her terror of heights, she kept imagining herself plummeting from the edge of the loft, even though a barrier made it nearly impossible to fall off.
Synonyms: collapse, plunge

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P polemical (puh-LEM-i-kuhl)

porous
(POHR-uhs)

GRE VO CABULA RY

pragmatic
(prag-MA-tik)

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P controversial; tending toward disputes or controversy Though the essay was not intended to be polemical, it inspired many angry letters to the editor of the publication.
Synonyms: argumentative, contentious

having pores, permeable to fluids
Some rocks, like pumice, are actually porous and can absorb water.
Synonyms: absorbent, penetrable

oriented toward the practical

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Our pragmatic mother preferred to receive useful gifts for her birthday.
Synonyms: businesslike, efficient, utilitarian

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P

prattle
(PRA-tuhl)

precarious
(pri-KER-ee-uhs)

precipitate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pri-SI-puh-teyt)

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P chatter or babble
The prattle and laughter of her students filled
Ms. Shapiro’s classroom.
Synonym: idle talk

dependent on uncertain or chance circumstances
Her position at the company felt increasingly precarious as more and more of her colleagues were let go.
Synonyms: contingent, insecure, perilous, shaky, unreliable

to cause, to bring about in a rushed or sudden way; to come out of solution

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

His idle remark precipitated an argument between his parents
Synonyms: hasten, hurry, speed

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P precursor (pri-KUHR-suhr)

predilection
(pre-duh-LEK-shuhn)

GRE VO CABULA RY

preen
(preen)

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P that which precedes or anticipates another
Athenian democracy is regarded as a precursor to ours, although it functioned very differently than any democracy does today.
Synonyms: forerunner, predecessor

a preference for something
The boss’s predilection for loud jazz music was barely tolerable to anyone he worked with.
Synonyms: bias, inclination, penchant, tendency

to groom, to dress smartly; to congratulate oneself for an accomplishment

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

You may preen yourself until you look as glamorous as can be, but if you behave rudely, you will not impress.
Synonym: primp

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P premonition (pre-muh-NI-shuhn)

prescience
(PRE-shuhns)

presumptuous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pri-ZUHMP-choo-uhs)

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P a sense of anticipation of a future event
Her premonition of failure had everything to do with her anxiety and little to do with reason.
Synonyms: forewarning, presintement

foresight, through either divine means or normal human anticipation
Even though the day began without a cloud in the sky, he had the prescience to bring rain gear. Synonym: foreknowledge

overstepping bounds, such as of courtesy

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

May I be so presumptuous as to suggest that you repaint your living room walls?
Synonyms: audacious, bold, overconfident

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P prevaricate (pri-VAR-uh-keyt)

pristine
(pris-TEEN)

GRE VO CABULA RY

probity
(PROH-buh-tee)

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P to lie
Do not prevaricate about who did what or why; simply tell me how the vase got broken.
Synonyms: deceive, equivocate, misrepresent

fresh, unspoiled, clean
She gazed at the pristine canvas, enjoying the possibilities it offered while still untouched by her paints.
Synonyms: immaculate, pure

maintenance of virtue and honesty

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

In To Kill a Mockingbird, the probity of Atticus
Finch is such that he is the same man in his living room as out on the street.
Synonyms: fidelity, integrity, sincerity, uprightness

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P problematic (prob-luh-MA-tik)

proclivity
(proh-KLI-vuh-tee)

prodigal

GRE VO CABULA RY

(PRO-di-guhl)

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P posing a problem, unsettled
Your claim is problematic, insofar as it does not apply to those who earn below the median household income.
Synonyms: doubtful, questionable, uncertain

tendency
Her proclivity toward fussy tidiness was severely challenged when her baby became a spirited and messy toddler.
Synonyms: inclination, predilection, propensity

characterized by lavish, wasteful, or reckless expense; abundant

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Nature is prodigal in its resources; unfortunately, humanity is prodigal in using those resources.
Synonyms: excessive, extravagant; bountiful

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P prodigious (pruh-DI-juhs)

profligate
(PRO-fli-guht)

GRE VO CABULA RY

profuse
(pruh-FYOOS)

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P inspiring wonder; extraordinary in size or degree They celebrated the grand wedding with a prodigious feast.
Synonyms: exceptional, extraordinary, fabulous, marvelous; huge, enormous

given to dissipation or extravagance
After your profligate behavior all semester long, how could you expect anything but the poorest grades?
Synonyms: corrupt, immoral, licentious, shameless, wanton

abundant without restraint

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Their profuse compliments were as unexpected as they were welcome.
Synonyms: excessive, generous, liberal, plentiful

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P prolific (pruh-LI-fik)

propensity

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pruh-PEN-suh-tee)

propitiate
(proh-PI-shee-eyt)

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P abundantly productive, fertile
She is not only a talented writer, but prolific, completing one or two novels every year.
Synonyms: bountiful, fruitful, teeming

a natural tendency or preference
I have a propensity to eat too much when I am nervous.
Synonyms: inclination, predilection, proclivity

to gain or regain the favor of
To propitiate her boss, she began to bring him snacks and coffee in the afternoon.
Synonyms: appease, conciliate

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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P propriety (pruh-PRAHY-uh-tee)

prosaic
(proh-ZEY-ik)

proscribe

GRE VO CABULA RY

(pro-SKRAHYB)

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P the state of being proper or appropriate
Propriety in speech was so important to him that even in his most heated moments he never used harsh language.
Synonyms: appropriateness, correctness, decorum, respectability

dull, factual
She once had romantic visions of life as the editor of a literary magazine; the reality was prosaic, involving demanding production schedules and temperamental writers.
Synonyms: commonplace, unimaginative

to forbid

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After the accident, all alcoholic beverages were proscribed from the stadium.
Synonyms: banish, condemn, outlaw, prohibit

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P

pungent
(PUHN-juhnt)

purport

GRE VO CABULA RY

(puhr-POHRT)

putrefy
(PYOO-truh-fahy)

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P sharp, painful, to the point
The rejection was brief and pungent.
Synonyms: acrid, biting, caustic

to claim or pretend
This manuscript purports to be the original, but it looks like a copy to me.
Synonyms: allege, assert

to rot
The fruit that fell from the trees began to putrefy within a day or two.
Synonyms: decay, spoil, stink

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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Q

quaff
(kwof)

quagmire
(KWAG-mahyr)

qualified

GRE VO CABULA RY

(KWO-luh-feyd)

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Q to drink deeply with great enjoyment
We shall raise our glasses high in a toast and then quaff our ale in celebration!
Synonyms: down, imbibe

soft land that gives underfoot; a difficult situation
The couple was sinking in a quagmire of debt.
Synonyms: bog; predicament, quandary

to be suitable for a particular purpose; modified or restricted in some way
Her acceptance of our invitation was qualified: she could come only if she could find a ride home. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: capable, competent, proper, skillful; conditional, contingent

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Q qualm (kwom)

query
(KWEER-ee)

querulous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(KWER-uh-luhs)

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Q a feeling of apprehension or uneasiness, often for reasons of conscience or propriety
He had many qualms about living on the other side of the country from his aging parents.
Synonyms: apprehension, misgiving, uncertainty

question
Your lengthy explanation certainly answered my query, and more!
Synonym: inquiry

given to complaining
Few of his classmates liked the querulous child, which only made him more irritable.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: dissatisfied, fretful, whining

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Q quibble (KWI-buhl)

quiescent
(kwayh-EH-suhnt)

quixotic

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kwik-SAH-tik)

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Q to evade a point through ambiguous or irrelevant arguments
They quibbled over the details so long that they went over budget and failed to meet their deadline. Synonyms: bicker, equivocate

at rest, latent
My mind is hardly quiescent in sleep: my dreams are busy, sometimes even panicked.
Synonyms: dormant, inactive, motionless, quiet, still

extravagantly foolish or romantic in the pursuit of ideals

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

I am not so quixotic to think that my leadership can transform this school in just one year, but I do believe that I can make a difference.
Synonyms: chivalrous, impractical, visionary

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Q

quotidian

GRE VO CABULA RY

(kwoh-TI-dee-uhn)

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Q ordinary After our arduous journey, it was good to return to our quotidian concerns: getting the children to school and ourselves to work.
Synonyms: commonplace, daily, everyday, usual G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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R rancorous (RANG-kuh-ruhs)

rarefied

GRE VO CABULA RY

(RER-uh-fahyd)

rationale
(ra-shuh-NAL)

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R characterized by deep ill will
Over the course of a few days, their argument became so rancorous that reconciliation seemed impossible.
Synonyms: bitter, virulent

elevated; related to or appealing to a small, elite group
Vivian does not share her parents’ rarefied taste for the work of minimalist composers; she prefers rock ’n’ roll.
Synonyms: esoteric, lofty, select

the basis of an opinion or belief

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Her rationale for stealing towels from hotels was that everyone else does it too.
Synonyms: explanation, justification, reason

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R recalcitrant (ri-KAL-suh-truhnt)

recant
(ri-KANT)

GRE VO CABULA RY

recluse
(REH-kloos)

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R stubbornly defiant, unmanageable, resistant
The class of third-grade students proved to be recalcitrant to all the demands of the inexperienced substitute teacher.
Synonyms: disobedient, intractable, uncontrollable to openly and formally withdraw or disavow a statement or belief
Regrettable as they were, she refused to recant the rash statements she had made the night before.
Synonyms: nullify, retract, void

one who has withdrawn from society

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

We rarely see my brother, a recluse who lives in the woods with only his dog.
Synonym: hermit

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R

recondite
(RE-kuhn-dahyt)

redoubtable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ri-DOU-tuh-buhl)

refractory
(ri-FRAK-tuh-ree)

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R hidden, difficult to understand
Her book dealt with such recondite matters as
Kantian ethics.
Synonyms: esoteric, mysterious, obscure, profound inspiring fear or respect
He is a redoubtable scholar whose works are as entertaining as they are impressive.
Synonyms: awesome, eminent, formidable, illustrious resistant to authority; resistant to treatment

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

As refractory as a mule, he never earned his diploma because he refused to complete the necessary battery of tests.
Synonyms: disobedient, rebellious, uncontrollable, unyielding

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R refulgent (ri-FUHL-juhnt)

refute
(ri-FYOOT)

relegate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(RE-luh-geyt)

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R shining brightly
Even from a distance, the refulgent city seemed to light up the sky.
Synonyms: brilliant, gleaming, radiant

to prove wrong, to deny
He could not refute the evidence against him, and in the end, he confessed to the crime.
Synonyms: disprove, invalidate, repudiate

to banish, to assign to an insignificant or inferior place or role
After the offices were renovated, we were relegated to a central room with no windows.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: demote, displace

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R renege (ri-NEG)

reparation
(re-puh-REY-shuhn)

reproach

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ri-PROHCH)

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R to go back on a commitment
Karen reneged on her promise to come out with us only because of illness.
Synonym: default

making amends for damages or a wrong
In reparation for years of neglect, the town finally invested an unprecedented amount in the schools, streets, and park in its poorest neighborhood. Synonyms: atonement, compensation, satisfaction

(n.) an expression of disapproval or the act of expressing disapproval

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The teacher’s reproaches fell on deaf ears, and the students continued to chatter while working on their writing.
Synonyms: criticism, rebuke
(v.) to express disapproval
Trevor’s mother reproached him for failing to write a thank-you note to his grandmother.
Synonyms: admonish, criticize, disparage a depraved person

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R reprobate (RE-pruh-beyt)

repudiate
(ri-PYOO-dee-eyt)

rescind

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ri-SIND)

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R
He was a reprobate who occasionally even stole cash from his elderly mother’s purse. pariah, fiend, miscreant

to disown or reject
Consider your words carefully before you decide to publicly repudiate the claims made by your boss.
Synonyms: condemn, disown, renounce

to take away or cancel
She could not rescind the order she had mistakenly made for a bridesmaid dress in the wrong color.
Synonyms: annul, invalidate, retract, revoke

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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R reticent (RE-tuh-suhnt)

reverence
(REV-ruhnts)

rhetoric

GRE VO CABULA RY

(RE-tuh-rik)

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R tending to be uncommunicative or silent
Thinking her parents would not approve, Hannah was reticent about her plans to move to
Brazil.
Synonyms: reserved, restrained

feelings of honor or respect
Bruce treated the baseball with reverence after his favorite pitcher signed it.
Synonyms: awe, deference, veneration

the study or art of the use of language in speech or writing

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The electorate did not care for his highfalutin rhetoric and voted him out of office after just one term.

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

R

rue
(roo)

ruse

GRE VO CABULA RY

(rooz)

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R discourse to feel regret or sorrow, to wish that something had never been
I rue the day that I first took up this game: I’ve found it to be completely addictive!
Synonyms: deplore, grieve, mourn, regret

a trick
What he could not get directly through hard work, he decided to acquire indirectly through a ruse.
Synonyms: artifice, deceit, stratagem, subterfuge

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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S sage (seyj)

salubrious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(suh-LOO-bree-uhs)

sanction
(SANGK-shuhn)

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S one who is wise
They treated me as a sage simply for having worked there longer than anyone else.
Synonyms: guru, master

healthful
This purportedly salubrious drink is actually hardly more than sugar water.
Synonyms: beneficial, wholesome

to approve, give permission
I cannot believe that your parents would sanction such rude behavior.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: allow, authorize, endorse

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S sardonic (sahr-DON-ik)

satiate
(SEY-shee-eyt)

satire

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SA-tahyr)

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S disdainfully or skeptically humorous or mocking
Joseph’s sardonic attitude toward his parents’ interests was somewhat insulting, but also expected from a teenager.
Synonyms: cynical, scornful, sneering

to satisfy fully or supply to excess
This Thanksgiving dinner will surely satiate even the hungriest of us all!
Synonyms: fill, gratify, indulge

the use of irony or ridicule to expose human folly G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The novel is meant to be a satire; the author is ridiculing the views of the characters, not endorsing them.
Synonyms: irony, mockery, parody

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S saturate (SA-chuh-reyt)

savor
(SEY-vuhr)

secrete

GRE VO CABULA RY

(si-KREET)

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S to fill completely or infuse with something until nothing more can be absorbed
The air in and around the garden was saturated with the scent of lilacs.
Synonyms: drench, soak

to taste or smell with pleasure, enjoy
I eat lobster once every year, while I’m on vacation, and I savor it each time.
Synonyms: appreciate, relish

to give off or release a substance or secretion such as sweat; to hide

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The tree secreted a sticky sap from the area of the trunk that was injured.
Synonyms: discharge, emit; conceal

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S sedulous (SE-juh-luhs)

sensual
(SEN-shuh-wuhl)

sensuous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SEN-shuh-wuhs)

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S characterized or produced by perseverance
Through sedulous effort, Karen mastered conversational French in just six months.
Synonyms: diligent, industrious, tireless

related to the senses, especially with the gratification of or indulgence in the senses or appetites Their interest in each other was purely sensual, and so their relationship was passionate but brief. Synonyms: carnal, materialistic

affecting the senses, aesthetically gratifying to the senses

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The singer was beloved for her sensuous style.
Synonyms: luxurious, pleasurable

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S sentient (SEN-shee-uhnt)

servile

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SUHR-vahyl)

shard
(shahrd)

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S conscious, able to perceive
The forest seemed to be haunted, as though the trees were sentient.
Synonym: aware

submissive, like a slave
Though yours is the lowest position in the firm, there is no need to behave in such a servile way, especially if you hope to be promoted.
Synonyms: abject, obedient, subservient

a fragment of a hard or brittle substance

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

After he glued together the shards of the broken vase, the resulting vessel was off-kilter and oddly beautiful.
Synonym: scrap

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S singular (SING-gyuh-luhr)

skeptic
(SKEP-tik)

solicitous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(suh-LI-suh-tuhs)

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S unique, unusual
Leonardo da Vinci’s genius was singular; who else has been so talented in so many different disciplines? Synonyms: exceptional, individual, odd, peculiar

a person who is given to skepticism, who tends to doubt or disbelieve
When it comes to matters of faith, I tend to be a skeptic; I prefer to believe only when there is evidence for belief.
Synonyms: disbeliever, doubter

showing concern or care; eager

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

I was irritated by their overly solicitous questions and fussing after my illness.
Synonyms: anxious, attentive, careful, worried

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S solvent (SOL-vuhnt)

soporific

GRE VO CABULA RY

(soh-puh-RI-fik)

sordid
(SAWR-did)

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S
(adj.) able to pay debts; having the power of dissolving After two difficult years, business was good again and at last we were solvent. stable (n.) a substance, usually a liquid, in which other substances can be dissolved
Water is a solvent for a variety of substances, such as salt.

tending to cause sleep, related to sleep or sleepiness While I am energized by the music of Bach, my husband finds it soporific and often actually falls asleep while listening to it.
Synonyms: calming, dull, hypnotic, soothing

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

characterized by baseness, filthy
The story of his ascent to power was a sordid one of greed, betrayal, and even murder.
Synonyms: degenerate, miserable, squalid, vile

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S

sparse
(spahrs)

specious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SPEE-shuhs)

spectrum
(SPEK-truhm)

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S thinly settled or grown, meager
After the long, dry summer, the grass was sparse underfoot.
Synonyms: inadequate, scanty, skimpy

having the appearance of goodness or truth, attractive in a deceptive way
Despite her specious arguments, the candidate attracted an enthusiastic following.
Synonyms: false, illusory, misleading, plausible

a series or range of related things or ideas
Roxanne has a wide spectrum of interests, including everything from martial arts to bird watching. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: continuum, span

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S spendthrift (SPEND-thrift)

sporadic
(spuh-RA-dik)

spurious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SPYOOR-ee-uhs)

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S a person who spends wastefully
One of my uncles is frugal and has accumulated a staggering fortune, and the other is a spendthrift who has accumulated a staggering debt.
Synonyms: spender, squanderer

happening occasionally or irregularly
The children were given to sporadic bursts of enthusiasm that their teacher was determined to cultivate.
Synonyms: isolated, occasionally, scattered

not genuine or true

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Not wanting to hurt his feelings, she gave a spurious reason for rejecting his invitation to the movies.
Synonyms: contrived, counterfeit, deceitful, deceptive 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 360

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S

squalid
(SKWO-lid)

squander
(SKWON-duhr)

GRE VO CABULA RY

static
(STA-tik)

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S filthy from neglect or poverty
Once anything makes its way into my little brother’s squalid bedroom, it rarely makes its way out.
Synonyms: disgusting, miserable, sordid

to spend or use wastefully, to scatter
You worked hard to earn that money, so don’t squander it on silly things like video games!
Synonyms: dissipate, misuse, waste

showing a lack of change or movement
In literature, a static character is one who is the same from the beginning to the end of the story. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: fixed, inactive, unchanging

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S

stigma
(STIG-muh)

stint
(stint)

stipulate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(STI-pyuh-leyt)

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S a mark or sign of disgrace
Wendy bore the stigma of having been fired from three jobs, until she found a suitable career and thrived.
Synonyms: blemish, brand, scar, stain

a period of time spent doing a specific activity
I had a brief stint in college but dropped out to start my own business.
Synonym: term

to set conditions of agreement, to make a specific demand
The printer stipulated that the files should be ready no later than the last day of June.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: contract, designate, require, settle

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S

stoic
(STOH-ik)

stolid
(STO-lid)

stratified

GRE VO CABULA RY

(STRA-tuh-fahyd)

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S not showing feeling
Our mother’s stoic attitude toward her struggle to make a living for our family was an inspiration to us.
Synonyms: dispassionate, indifferent, philosophic, self-controlled

having or showing no feelings
Nobody understood what she saw in him, but she knew that his stolid exterior hid a sensitive soul. Synonyms: impassive, indifferent, unemotional

arranged in layers or hierarchical classes

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The stratified cliffs of the Grand Canyon display a record of geological time.
Synonym: ordered

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S

striated
(STRAHY-ey-ted)

strident
(STRAHY-duhnt)

GRE VO CABULA RY

strut
(struht)

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S marked with grooves, scratches, or stripes
The striated rocks give evidence of the glaciers that once covered this region, scraping and scoring any exposed surfaces as they moved. Synonyms: furrowed, streaked, striped

characterized by harsh and insistent sound, commanding attention
His strident voice could be heard throughout the entire building.
Synonym: loud

to walk in a proud or pompous way

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Now that Henry is the boss of our division, he struts around as though he owns the place.
Synonyms: flaunt, parade, swagger

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S

stupefy
(STOO-puh-fahy)

stymie
(STAHY-mee)

GRE VO CABULA RY

subpoena
(suh-PEE-nuh)

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S to make stupid or numb; to astonish
This economics textbook is so dull that it stupefies more than it instructs.
Synonyms: benumb, daze, deaden; bewilder, confound, flabbergast

to get in the way of
Our ambitions were stymied by our lack of funds. Synonyms: block, hinder, impede, obstruct, thwart a written command to appear in court
Unless the judge issues a subpoena, there is no way I will appear in court.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonym: summons

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S subside (suhb-SAHYD)

substantiate
(suhb-STAN-shee-eyt)

subtle

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SUH-tl)

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S to settle down or become quiet
Before long, the storm had subsided and the sun appeared.
Synonyms: abate, diminish

to give evidence for or prove; to give form to
It took six weeks of research for her to gather the evidence to substantiate her claims, and the resulting article won several awards.
Synonyms: demonstrate, establish; embody, materialize delicate or elusive, difficult to perceive or understand; insightful, skillful

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The argument was so subtle that I had to read the essay several times to appreciate its conclusions. Synonyms: indistinct, suggestive; penetrating, perceptive 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 372

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S subversive (suhb-VUHR-siv)

succinct
(suhk-SINGKT)

succor

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SUH-kuhr)

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S tending to undermine, intending to overthrow
Because their aims were subversive, they distributed the pamphlets quietly, so as not to call the attention of the authorities.
Synonyms: destructive, rebellious

precise, using few words
His succinct explanation was far more helpful than anything in our 48-page manual.
Synonyms: blunt, concise, pithy

relief or help; that which gives relief or help
The missionaries vowed to give succor to the poor. G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: aid, assistance

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S

superfluous
(soo-PUHR-floo-uhs)

supersede
(soo-puhr-SEED)

supplant

GRE VO CABULA RY

(suh-PLANT)

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S more than what is needed, extra, unnecessary
Though I’m certainly grateful, your praise of my performance was superfluous; being able to make music is joy enough in itself.
Synonyms: excessive, expendable, gratuitous

to take the place or position of, displace
In the twentieth century, the physics that followed from Einstein’s theories superseded Newtonian physics. Synonyms: replace, succeed, supplant

to take the place of, especially by force, through treachery, or through superiority

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

The rebels overthrew the government, only to supplant one tyranny with another.
Synonyms: overthrow, succeed, supersede, undermine, uproot

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S supposition (suh-puh-ZI-shuhn)

surfeit
(suhr-feht)

synthesis

GRE VO CABULA RY

(SIN-thuh-suhs)

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S the act of supposing or something that is supposed Your supposition that I am not up to the job seems to be based more on stereotypes than on familiarity with my work.
Synonyms: assumption, hyphothesis

an excessive amount or indulgence in something December seems to be characterized by a surfeit in all things: food, drink, and gifts.
Synonyms: glut, overindulgence, satiety, surplus G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

the combination of different things or ideas to form one substance or whole
The show was a remarkable synthesis of different art forms: drama, music, and dance combined in one extravagant spectacle.
Synonyms: amalgamation, integration, unification

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T tacit (TA-suht)

tangential

tautological
(taw-tuh-LO-ji-kuhl)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(tan-JENT-shuhl)

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T expressed or done without words, implied
No words on the matter were actually spoken between our neighbors and us; we simply came to a tacit agreement that any apples that fell onto our yard from their tree were ours.
Synonyms: implicit, silent, suggested, unspoken

touching or connected only slightly, as a tangent line
Her paper was marred by the inclusion of too much information that was only tangential to her main point.
Synonyms: digressive, divergent, incidental

characterized by unnecessary repetition

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Always saying “a variety of different things” is tautological because the word variety already implies difference; you can simply say “a variety of things.”
Synonym: redundant

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T

tenacity
(tuh-NA-suh-tee)

tenet

GRE VO CABULA RY

(TE-nuht)

tenuous
(TEN-yuh-wuhs)

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T persistence Against all odds, with great tenacity, and not a little luck, she worked her way through college.
Synonyms: determination, resolve

a principle or belief, especially one held by a particular group of people
The main tenet of attachment theory is that the healthy development of a child requires the secure attachment to at least one caregiver.
Synonyms: doctrine, precept

thin in form or density; lacking substance, strength, clarity, or a sound basis in reasoning

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

We questioned her tenuous reasons for her three-day absence, but she refused to clarify her story.
Synonyms: flimsy, rare; questionable, unsubstantial, vague, weak

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

T terse (tuhrs)

tirade
(TAHY-reyd)

tome

GRE VO CABULA RY

(tohm)

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T concise, sometimes abruptly so
His terse reply hinted at darker reasons for his condition, and so I did not press him to say more. Synonyms: brief, curt, pithy, succinct

a long and angry speech
Our neighbor subjects all visitors to a tirade on the perceived wrongdoings of his ex-wife.
Synonyms: diatribe, harangue, invective

a large, weighty, or scholarly book; one volume of a larger work

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

What she originally envisioned as a brief novella developed into a 600-page tome, dramatizing the lives and relationships of some half-dozen characters.
Synonym: opus

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T

torpor
(TAWR-puhr)

torque
(tawrk)

tortuous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(TAWRCH-wuhs)

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T a state of mental and physical inactivity accompanied by a loss of feeling; a lack of energy
During my illness, the fever did not trouble me so much as the torpor—I hate to be slowed down! Synonyms: apathy, dullness, lethargy

a force that causes twisting or rotation, or the measurement of this force
The carpenter’s drill supplied enough torque to drive screws into the very dense wood.
Synonyms: force, rotation

having many twists or turns; characterized by indirect methods

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

We made our way back and forth up the tortuous path through the woods.
Synonyms: circuitous, crooked, winding; convoluted, devious

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T

tout
(tout)

tractable

transgression
(tranz-GREH-shuhn)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(TRAK-tuh-buhl)

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T to solicit support for, to promote
Mr. Franklin takes every opportunity to tout the accomplishments of his three grandchildren.
Synonyms: acclaim, herald, praise

easily led, trained, or controlled; easily handled
He has a tractable dog that learns tricks easily.
Synonyms: docile, submissive, yielding; malleable

an act of violating a command or law or of going beyond some limit
Although our transgression was unintentional, we still had to pay a fine for breaking the law.
Synonyms: breach, crime, sin, violation

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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T transient (TRAN-shuhnt)

translucent
(tranz-LOO-suhnt)

trenchant

GRE VO CABULA RY

(TREN-chuhnt)

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T passing swiftly in and out of existence, lasting or staying only a short time
Though they seem long, the days of summer are transient, and before you know it, winter has come again.
Synonyms: ephemeral, fleeting, temporary, transitory allowing the passage of light but diffusing it so that objects on the other side are not clearly visible; clearly understandable; clear
Translucent panels were set into the wall, so that you could see blurry figures passing through the hallway on the other side.
Synonyms: semitransparent; lucid

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

keen, articulate, or perceptive (describing language or a person); energetic, effective; sharply defined
His trenchant criticism could be hard to take, but the students who listened were better writers for it.
Synonyms: caustic, cutting; vigorous; clear-cut, distinct 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 390

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5/10/11 2:55 PM

T

truculent
(truh-kyuh-luhnt)

tryst

GRE VO CABULA RY

(trist)

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T feeling or showing ferocity; deadly, harsh, or aggressive The discipline of playing football transformed the truculent boy into a mild young man; he reserved his aggression for the field.
Synonyms: brutal, cruel, fierce, savage; belligerent, hostile

an appointment to meet, especially one made secretly between lovers
In the myth of Pyramus and Thisbe, a tryst between the two lovers ends in tragedy when Pyramus believes that Thisbe has been devoured by a lioness.
Synonyms: date, engagement, rendezvous

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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U ubiquitous (yoo-BI-kwi-tuhs)

uncanny

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uhn-KA-nee)

unfeigned
(uhn-FEYND)

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U existing everywhere at once
That hit song was ubiquitous all summer long:
I heard it at the beach, at the grocery store, waiting on line at the deli, and on the radio just about every time I turned it on.
Synonyms: omnipresent, pervasive, widespread

seeming to be supernatural in nature, extraordinary She had an uncanny way of knowing that someone was seriously ill, sometimes even before the person knew of the illness him or herself. Synonyms: eerie, mysterious, spooky, weird

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

genuine, sincere
I love to be with children, because their delight is always unfeigned and spontaneous.
Synonyms: honest, real, true, unaffected

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U untenable (uhn-TEN-uh-buhl)

urbane

GRE VO CABULA RY

(uhr-BEYN)

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U incapable of being defended (describing an argument or belief); unsuitable for occupation
The more evidence we gathered, the more clearly we saw how untenable our original hypothesis was, and it took us several months to devise another one.
Synonyms: illogical, indefensible, unsound

polite, polished, or elegant in manner
When I was new to the city and unaccustomed to sophisticated conversation, I was thoroughly intimidated by his urbane wit.
Synonyms: civilized, cultured, elegant, refined, sophisticated G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA
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V vacillate (VA-suh-leyt)

vacuous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(VA-kyuh-wuhs)

vapid
(VA-puhd)

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V to sway or fluctuate; to waver in feeling or hesitate in making a decision
Roberta vacillated for so long that by the time she decided to go to the show, the tickets were all sold out.
Synonyms: oscillate, stagger, swing; alternate, hedge, pause

empty, lacking ideas or seriousness, idle
I’ve been known on occasion to indulge in those ridiculous paperback romances—the more vacuous, the better.
Synonyms: foolish, inane, purposeless, silly, stupid G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

lacking energy or flavor
The conversation at the dinner party that night was as vapid as the tasteless meal.
Synonyms: dull, flat, insipid, tedious

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V

variegated
(VER-ee-uh-gey-tuhd)

venerate

GRE VO CABULA RY

(VE-nuh-reyt)

veracity
(vuh-RA-suh-tee)

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V marked by a variety of colors; varied
I love the variegated landscape in autumn.
Synonyms: kaleidoscopic, motley, mottled; assorted, diverse, mixed

to regard with reverence, to honor
The basketball star was venerated by the citizens of the small town where he grew up.
Synonyms: revere, worship

truthfulness or accuracy
She was a scrupulous journalist, and when she could not check the veracity of the claim, she struck all mentions of it from her article.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: authenticity, credibility, honesty

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V verbose (vuhr-BOHS)

vexation
(vek-SEY-shuhn)

viable

GRE VO CABULA RY

(VAHY-uh-buhl)

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V tending to use more words than necessary, wordy Warren tends to write verbose e-mails that nobody in the company has the time to read.
Synonyms: garrulous, long-winded, loquacious

the act of troubling or agitating; the state of being troubled or agitated
To be alive is to experience vexation; you will be happier if you accept that you will encounter annoyances. Synonyms: annoyance, irritation, nuisance

capable of living, growing, and developing; able to function properly

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Though the idea was brilliant, it also involved a greater expense than was viable, given our budget at the time.
Synonyms: functioning; feasible, possible, practicable, reasonable, workable

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V vigilant (VI-juh-luhnt)

vilify
(VI-luh-fahy)

GRE VO CABULA RY

virtuoso
(vir-choo-OH-soh)

[ 403 ]

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V alert, watchful
Tourists must be vigilant when walking through that part of town, as the locals there tend to be especially hostile toward foreigners.
Synonyms: attentive, guarded, wary

to slander
How dare you vilify my name in the newspaper when you are the one who has been squandering city funds.
Synonyms: attack, censure, defame, denigrate, disparage (n.) one who excels at an art

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Picasso was a virtuoso who continuously explored different styles, materials, and themes.
Synonyms: genius, master, prodigy
(adj.) displaying excellence
The audience erupted in applause for the pianist’s virtuoso performance of the Liszt étude.
Synonyms: masterful, skilled

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V virulent (VIR-uh-lunt)

viscous

vituperative
(vi-TOO-puh-ruh-tiv)

GRE VO CABULA RY

(VIS-kuhs)

[ 405 ]

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V poisonous, highly infective, or deadly; malicious or harsh
The 1918 influenza virus was especially virulent, resulting in a pandemic that killed some 50 million people. Synonyms: destructive, noxious; hostile, spiteful

adhesive, sticky, thick (describing a liquid)
This varnish is viscous when applied and dries to a hard gloss in just a few hours.
Synonyms: gelatinous, gummy

characterized by harsh or abusive language
The vituperative editorial put the mayor on the defensive.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: abusive, derisive, scolding

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[ 406 ]

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V

vogue
(vohg)

volatile
(VO-luh-tl)

voracious

GRE VO CABULA RY

(vaw-REY-shuhs)

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V something that is in fashion, currently popular, or favored
If there was ever a time when Mrs. Henderson’s hairstyle was in vogue, it was long before any of us was born.
Synonyms: fashion, mode, popularity

evaporating easily; explosive, changeable
Fearing the substitute teacher’s volatile temper, the children were quiet and obedient.
Synonyms: gaseous; capricious, unstable

having a large appetite, insatiable
The film festival briefly satisfied their voracious appetite for new movies.

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

Synonyms: avid, gluttonous, ravenous

7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 408

[ 408 ]

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W warranted (WAW-ruhn-tuhd)

wary
(WER-ee)

waver

GRE VO CABULA RY

(WEY-vuhr)

[ 409 ]

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W justified Your angry outburst at the child was simply not warranted; he is only two years old and simply does not know any better.
Synonyms: authorized, sanctioned

cautious, watchful, on guard
Our cat is wary of visitors, often hiding when they first arrive.
Synonyms: attentive, vigilant

to sway back and forth; to become unsteady, shake, or tremble; to vacillate in making a decision or in opinion

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

In the twenty-first mile of the marathon, she wavered in her determination to complete the race, but the spectators cheered her on.
Synonyms: flutter, wobble; alternate, fluctuate

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W/
Z

welter
(WEL-tuhr)

whimsical
(HWIM-zi-kuhl)

zealous

GRE VO CABULA RY

(ZE-luhs)

[ 411 ]

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W/
Z
(v.) to roll or toss, as in waves; to wallow or become immersed or involved
The children weltered about in the piles of fallen leaves.
Synonyms: heave, tumble
(n.) a state of disorder, a jumble
The check was lost in the welter of books and papers that cluttered her desk.
Synonyms: confusion, tormoil

full of whims, characterized by sudden and eccentric ideas
She designs fabrics with whimsical patterns that are suitable for children’s clothing.
Synonyms: fanciful, playful, wayward

G RE VRE V OCABURY RY
G OCABULA LA

characterized by passionate loyalty and zeal for a person or idea
A zealous fan of the handsome young rock star, she traveled from city to city to see him perform. Synonyms: ardent, dedicated, devoted, impassioned 7031_ GREVOC_ Flash Review[FIN].indd 412

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