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GRE Vocab Week 1
Terms in this set (58)
interpret or translate
Usage- I don't know how you construed my comment as an insult. All I said was 'Wow, I never knew you could sing.'
a person's general or natural mood; tendency
Usage- She was possessed of a kind and helpful disposition- she wouldn't just help you move, she'd bring home-baked muffins to the affair.
I could really use some help in the kitchen, if you are so disposed.
whimsical, capricious; imaginary; freely imaginative rather than based on reason or reality.
Usage- The play was set in a fanciful version of NYC, one where all the cab drivers spoke perfect English and the Statue of Liberty seemed to be in the middle of the island.
disturbing, causing anxiety
Usage- He was deeply disquieted by the racism he encountered in his new neighborhood.
Mr.Ramirez's lack of emotion at his wife's death was disquieting.
Dispatch (verb, noun)
send off or deal with in a speedy way (verb); speed, promptness (noun)
Usage- So, you want to be a bike messenger? I need messengers who approach every delivery with alacrity, care, and dispatch- if the customers wanted their packages to arrive slowly, they'd use the post office.
Acting with all possible dispatch, emergency services dispatched a rescue squad to the scene.
Measure the depth of (usually of water) as with soundling line; penetrate and discover the meaning of, understand
Usage- I cannot even remotely fathom how you interpreted an invitation to sleep on my couch as permission to take my car on six-hour joyride!
loud, confused noise, especially for a long period of time
Usage- This hotel was described as a "near all the hot spots," but I didn't realize that I wouldn't be able to sleep due to the all-night din from partygoers.
possible; logical or likely; suitable
Usage- Your plan to promote our product launch with a parade is just ot feasible- we don't have the money or enough time to get the permits.
Containing a fallacy, or mistake in logic; logically unsound; deceptive
Usage- The formal study of logic can enable a student to more easily identify fallacious reasoning and, furthermore, to point out its fallacies.
free someone from a mistake in thinking
Usage- Do really believe that toilets flush one way in the Northern hemisphere and another way in the Southern? Any physicist would be happy to disabuse you of that silly notion.
Refuse to proceed or to do something
"At the company retreat, he reluctantly agreed to participate in the ropes course, but balked at walking over hot coals as a trust exercise.
morally low, mean, dishonorable; of little or no valuable; crude and unrefined; counterfeit
contradict or misrepresent
"The actress's public persona as a perky girl-next-door belied her private pension for abusing her assistance and demanding that her trailer be filled with ridiculous luxury goods."
very difficult, strenuous; severe, hard to endure
The arduous hike up rocky terrain was all worth it once the hikers reached the summit./It was an arduous winter on the prairie;the family barely survived.
Characteristic of an earlier period, ancient, primitive
The school's archaic computer system predated even floppy disks-it stored records on tape drives!/ Sometimes when you look a word up in the dictionary, certain defintions are marked "Archaic"- unless you are a Shakespeare scholar, you can safetly ignore those archaisms.
Very bold or brave, often in a rude or reckless way; extremely original
He audaciously asked for a raise after working at the company for less than two months
Make milder, relieve; soothe, pacify, or calm
After losing a million-dollar account, he tried to assuage his furious boss by pointing out that he was close to winning a new account worth at least as much.
Deep dislike, aversion, or repugnance, sometimes without reason
As an environmentalist, Mr. Subramanian had nothing but antipathy for the mining company drilling in and polluting his hometown.
Absence of law or government; chaos, or disorder
Once the dictator was assasinated, the country fell into total arachy, as none of the opposition groups were strong enough to seize power.
Based entirely on one's discretion; capricious, uncreasonable, or having no basis
The judge's rulings were truly arbitrary: one defendant got community service for stealing a television, and another got three years for the same crime./ It doesnt really matter which brand of baking soda you buy, just arbutrarily pick one so we can get out of this grocery store before dinnertime.
Pacify, satisfy, relieve; concede to be belligerent demands, sometimes at the expense of principles
My mother is so angry she wasnt the first person we called when the baby was born-I'm hoping to appease her by spending Christmas at her house this year.
Of questionable authenticity; false
I'm sorry, but this putative letter from George Washington that you found at a garage sale is clearly apocryphal-it is riddled with anachronisms (for instance, Washington was long dead b u the time silent films were invented), and also, Washington most certainly didnt refer to Martha Washington as "baby."
Ascetic (adj, noun)
Abstinent or austere in lifestyle (adj); a person who leads an austere and simple life without material pleasures, esp. Someone who does this for religious reasons (noun)
Ascetics such as monks actually take vows of poverty.
The graduate student lived an ascetic existence, her apartment containing only a futon couch and a single bowl and set of chopsticks, which she used to eat ramen noodles every night.
Known or understood by only a few; obscure, secret
To win at Jeopardy, you must be full of arcane knowledge.
The wizard's shop was full of arcana, from Latin-to-Ancient Greek dictionaries to entire books on magic spells relating only to elephants.
Rub or sprinkle oil on; make sacred, such as by a ceremony that includes applying oil to someone
After Principal Smitters raised test scores over 60% at her school, it was only a mater of time before she was anointed superintendent by a fawning school board.
severe in manner or appearance; very self-disciplined, ascetic; without luxury or ease; sober or serious
"Her design sense was so minimalist as to be austere; all white walls, wooden furniture, not a single picture, or cozy comfort everywhere."
"The teen's aberrant behavior made his family suspect that he was using drugs."
detest, regard with disgust
"I abhor you! I would rather date a fish."
give up, renounce; repudiate, recant, or shun
"To become a citizen of the US, you must abjure loyalty to the nation of your birth."
rough, suitable for grinding or polishing; causing irritation or annoyance
"Could the inside of this mascot costume be any more abrasive?"
condense or curtail; shorten by omitting parts throughout while retaining the main idea
"Our romantic vacation was abridged when the babysitter called to say that the kids were sick and we should come home."
summit, peak, highest point
"The acme of my vacation was when I finally climbed to the acme of the mountain and enjoyed the gorgeous vista."
mildly scold; caution, advise, or remind to do something
"She was an exacting boss who costigated an employee for jamming the copier, yet she merely admonished her five year old for the same offense."
declare of affirm with confidence, say
"Despite your insistence that ethics are completely situational," said the professor, "I aver that the existence of natural rights inevitably leads to certain immutable ethical boundaries."
formally give up the throne
"King Edward VIII of England famously abdicated the throne in order to marry an American divorcee.
"Her stress over spending so much money on a house abates when the real estate broker told her about the property's 15 year tax abatement."
enthusiastic, dedicated, passionate, excessively desirous
"An avid cyclist, she was on her bike every weekend, and even bought the same bike that Lance Armstrong last used in the Tour de France."
squeeze, compress; restrict the freedom
Usage: The children strongly disliked being gussied up in constrictive clothing for a formal wedding. /
Tourism isn now allowed in North Kora, but tourists must stay with official tour groups, and their movements are heavily constricted
give in, admit, yield; acknowledge reluctantly; grant or give up
Usage: The negotiations were pointless, with each side's representatives instructed by their home countries to make no concessions whatsoever
Quebec was a french concession to Britain in the Treaty of Paris in 1763./ i suppose I will have to concede the argument now that you've looked up evidence on Wikipedia
Knowledgeable about or experienced with
Usage: for an opera singer, she is unusually conversant in physics- she just explained the purpose of the Large Hadron Collider
consult, compare view; bestow or give
usage: a ph.d confers upon a person the right to be addressed as "Doctor" as well as eligibility to pursue a tenure-track professorship./
Excuse me for a moment to make a call- I can't bu this car until I confer with my spouse
unite, combine, solidify, make coherent
usage: She consolidated her student loans so she would only have to make one payment per month
As group leader, Muriel will consolidate all of our research into a single report
controversial; prone to causing arguments, especially gratuitous or petty ones
usage: The death penalty is contentious issue./
My uncle is so contentious that every attempt I made to introduce an uncontroversial topic met with failure; he ranted and raved about the weather, trees, math and my daughter's enjoyment of oatmeal
a riddle, any mystery
usage- Sherlock Holmes is famous for his ability to solve the most complex conundrums with simple observation./ The new mystery novel presents an interesting spin on the classic locked-room conundrum- how did the perpetrator get in and out of the White House without being detected?
convoluted ( adj)
twisted; very complicated
usage- Your argument is convoluted that I'm not even able to understand it enough to start critiquing it./
To get from the hotel room to the pool requires following a convoluted path up 2 staircases and down two others- to get to someplace on the same floor we started on
Usage- although she took copious notes in class, she found that she was missing a big picture that would have tied all the information together
The fertile, copious land yield a rich harvest
support, add evidence
Usage: You're telling me you were 30 miles away riding a roller coaster when the school was vandalized? I have a hard time believing that. Is there anyone who can corroborate your story?
in an opposite way; on the other hand
Usage: I am not here to argue that lack of education causes poverty. Conversely, I am here to argue that poverty causes lack of education
reconciling, appeasing, attempting to make peace
Usage: The hotel manager was horrified at how the guest had been treated, and approached him in a conciliatory manner, offering him numerous freebies and apologizing repeatedly
strengthen or support
"the general requested reinforcements to bolster the defensive line set up at the border / Some people believe that self-affirmation exercises are an effective way to bolster self-esteem and even performance"
rude, ill-mannered, or insensitive person; a peasant or country bumpkin
"Milton was such a boor that, when Jane brought him home to meet her parents, he laughed at their garden gnome and made fun of everyone's hairstyles in old family photos "Don't be so boorish!" said his mortified girlfriend."
grow or flourish rapidly; put forth buds or shoots of a plant
"The dictator was concerned about the people's burgeoning discontent and redoubled his personal security / Spending an hour a day on vocabulary studies will soon cause your lexicon to burgeon"
Buttress (verb, noun)
support encourage (verb); a support or prop especially projecting from and supporting the wall of a building (noun)"
harsh discordant or meaningless mixture of sounds
"the first day of elementary school marching band practice was nothing but cacophony, a students who hadn't learned to play their instruments at all nevertheless banged on or puffed into them"
authorized, recognized; pertaining to the canon, or body of accepted rules, standards or artistic works
"school boards often start controversies when replacing canonical books in the curriculum with modern literature; while many people think that students should read works more relevant to their lives, others point out that Moby Dick is part of the canon for a reason"
acting on impulse, erratic
"The headmaster's punishments were capricious- break the rules one day, you get a warning; break them another day, you get expelled / Who needs a plan? A date is more fun with a little caprice- let's just start driving and see what we find!"
criticize severely; punish in order to correct
"at the grocery store, the mother attracted stares when she castigated- rather than merely admonished- her child for throwing a box of instant oatmeal"
capable of corroding metal or burning the skin; very critical or sarcastic
"Wait those chemicals are caustic! You need safety gloves and goggles before performing this experiment, or else you risk not only getting your skin burned off, but some seriously caustic remarks from our chemistry teacher"
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