GRE
3/21/2014

GRE Words Of The Day


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If you like this vocabulary learning style, you might enjoy GRE Vocab Capacity, which has 1,300 GRE words and accompanying mnemonics. There's also a list of word roots along with mnemonics to help remember them.

You can find the latest version of GRE Vocab Capacity on Amazon.com.

GRE Word Of The Day: Scrupulous


scrupulous (adjective): having integrity; being exact.


Think: scrape the poop


If you were scrupulous, you would have scraped the poop from your dog off my lawn without my asking.


Synonyms: principled, conscientious, conscionable

GRE Word Of The Day: Recapitulate


recapitulate (verb): to summarize.

Think: recap

The recap on the nightly news recapitulated the major events of the day.

Synonyms: encapsulate, epitomize, synopsize

GRE Word of the Day: Querulous


querulous (queer-yuh-lus) (adjective): whiny.

Think: quarrel with us.

We’d hang out with you more, but you’re so querulous that you always want to quarrel with us!

GRE Word of the Day: Partisan


partisan (adjective): having allegiance to a particular side or cause, usually without question.

Think: party’s son.

The chairman of the Democratic party’s son was unsurprisingly partisan in his political views.

GRE Word of the Day: Nascent


nascent (adjective): recently formed or developed.

Think: new car scent.

I jumped into the nascent BMW that had just come off the assembly line and smelled the bestnew car scent I’d ever smelled.

Synonyms: incipient, budding

GRE Word of the Day: Minatory


minatory (adjective): threatening.

Think: Minotaur.

In Greek mythology, the Minotaur – a creature with the head of a bull and the body of a man – was minatory because it ate people.

synonyms: baleful, foreboding, portentous, dire

GRE Word of the Day: Lachrymose


lachrymose (lack-kruh-mos) (adjective): tearful; mournful.

Think: lack Christmas.

If you lack Christmas presents, I don’t blame you for being lachrymose.

Fun fact: your tear ducts are your lacrimal glands.

GRE Word of the Day: Inculcate


inculcate (in-cull-kate) (verb): to teach by constant repetition and warning.

Think: in cult.

In the cult of Scientology, they inculcated Tom Cruise until he was brainwashed.

Synonyms: imbue, ingrain, inoculate

GRE Word of the Day: Hidebound


hidebound (adjective): ultra-conservative; inflexible.

Think: hide-bound.

The Republican candidate’s views were so hidebound that a hide-bound caveman dressed in animal skins would probably vote for him.

GRE Word of the Day: Grandstand


grandstand (verb): to show off.

Think: handstand.

Be honest: if you’re doing a handstand, you’re doing it to grandstand.

GRE Word of the Day: Fecund


fecund (fee-cund) (adjective): fruitful; inventive.

Think: feces under.

Spreading manure, or feces, under your crops as fertilizer will lead to a more fecund harvest.

GRE Word of the Day: Ebullient


ebullient (e-bully-ent) (adjective): lively and cheerful.

Think: Red Bull

After I chugged a giant Red Bull, my fatigue lifted and I became ebullient.

Etymology: from the Latin ebullire – to bubble out.

GRE Word of the Day: Dilatory


dilatory (dill-a-tory) (adjective): slow to act.

Think: delay.

If I have to write a paper, I’m dilatory and will delay starting it until the night before it’s due.

GRE Word of the Day: Celerity


celerity (sa-lear-ity) (noun): quickness

Think: accelerate

After Cee Lo switched to an all-celery diet, he lost 30 lbs. His celerity increased as did his ability to accelerate.

GRE Word of the Day: Baleful


baleful (bale-full) (adjective): threatening harm.

Think: Christian Bale.

I’m not a big Christian Bale fan – he always has a baleful look on his face – like he wants to fight you.

synonyms: pernicious, foreboding, minatory, portentous, dire

GRE Word of the Day: Acquisitive


acquisitive (ac-quis-i-tive) (adjective): eager to acquire and possess; greedy

Think: acquire

The acquisitive billionaire wanted to acquire every company he saw.

Synonyms: mercenary; rapacious; avaricious

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Zephyr


zephyr (zeh-fur) (noun): a gentle breeze

Think: zebra fur

The summer evening zephyr was as soft as zebra fur.

Synonym: waft

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Behemoth


behemoth (bee-HEE-muth) (noun): something huge

Think: beast mammoth

One really large beast was the woolly mammoth, a behemoth that lived during the ice age.

Synonyms: mastodon; dreadnought

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Wizened


wizened (wise-end) (adjective): shrunken and wrinkled, usually due to age

Think: wizard

Wizards like Gandalf and Dumbledore are usually wizened since they’re really old.

Synonyms: withered; gnarled

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Vociferous


vociferous (vo-ci-fur-us)(adjective):  loud

Think: voice for us

The announcer’s loud voice, for us, was too vociferous.

Synonyms: caterwauling; obstreperous; yawping

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Ubiquitous


ubiquitous (you-bick-quit-us) (adjective): existing everywhere

Think: you big quidditch

You big quidditch fans have made the Harry Potter sport ubiquitous on college campuses.

Synonyms: quotidian; universal

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Variegated


variegated (vary-ig-ated) (adjective): varied

Think: varied

The autumn leaves in Vermont are known for their variegated colors; last year, they varied from red to yellow to orange.

Synonyms: prismatic; multihued; polychromatic

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Trepidation


trepidation (treh-pid-a-shun) (noun): fear

Think: trap

The haunted house filled me with trepidation; I feared a trap would be sprung on me at any moment.

Synonyms: consternation; foreboding

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Solipsistic


solipsistic (soul-lip-sis-stick) (adjective): being extremely self centered

Think: sold lipstick

The model whose image sold lipstick became solipsistic due to all the compliments she received.

Synonyms: egocentric

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Repugnant


repugnant (re-pug-nant) (adjective): gross

Think: ugly pug

Although some people think pugs’ upturned faces and wheezing are cute, many find the breed to be repugnant.

Synonyms: abhorrent; odius; noisome

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Quiescent


quiescent (qui-es-sent) (adjective): at rest

Think: quiet

The hibernating bear was both quiet and quiescent.

Synonyms: torpid; inert

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Peripatetic


peripatetic (perry-pat-tet-ick) (adjective): wandering; traveling; constantly moving from place to place

Think: pitter-patter

The mouse in my house is peripatetic since I’m constantly hearing the pitter-patter of his little feet in the walls.

Synonyms: vagrant; ambulatory; gallivanting

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Obstreperous


obstreperous (ob-strep-er-is) (adjective): stubbornly resistant to control; noisy

Think: strep

The bacteria that cause strep throat are so obstreperous that many people take antibiotics for the condition.

Synonyms: caterwauling; vociferous; blatant

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Nugatory


nugatory (nugget-tori) (adjective): unimportant

Think: McNuggets

Eating chicken McNuggets is nugatory for good health; their health benefits could be said to be negative.

Synonym: piddling; futile

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Maelstrom


maelstrom (mail-strom) (noun): something violently powerful; a whirlpool

Think: mail-storm.

Spam emails flock to my inbox like a maelstrom; reading the mail storm would suck up all of my time.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Lurid

lurid (lure-id) (adjective): melodramatic; sensational; shocking.

Think: lure in.

The lurid neon silhouette of a naked woman was designed to lure in lonely gentlemen.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Jocose


jocose (joe-coase) (adjective): given to joking.

Think: joke coach.

The first thing I look for when I’m hiring a joke coach is a jocose personality.

Synonyms: jocund

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Importune


importune (im-poor-tune) (verb): to nag; to persistently insist.

Think: I’m poor tune.

The homeless man singing on the subway importuned us for money with his “I’m poor tune”.

synonyms: beseech, entreat, implore

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Hubris


hubris (hew-briss) (noun): excessive pride or self-confidence.

Think: huge breasts.

After getting implants, the girl developed hubris because her huge breasts attracted all kinds of attention.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Gumption


gumption (GUMP-shin) (noun): drive; initiative; courage

Think: Forrest Gump.

Forrest Gump showed gumption by playing football, starting a shrimp business, and running across the country.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Fastidious


fastidious (fass-TID-e-us) (adjective): difficult to please; having a meticulous attitude

Think: fast to tidy.

My fastidious roommate gets mad if I am not fast to tidy up after myself.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Eschew


eschew (ess-SHOE) (verb): to avoid.

Think: Ah-choo!

Eschew people who say “Ahchoo!” unless you want to catch a cold.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Diffident


diffident (DIFF-i-dent) (adjective): hesitant to speak due to lack of confidence

Think: difficult dentures

I’m only diffident because my difficult dentures make it hard to speak clearly.

synonyms: demure, retiring, self-effacing

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Cacophony


cacophony (cah-COUGH-o-knee) (noun): unpleasant, loud sounds.

Think: cough.

All the coughs from the tuberculosis ward formed a sickening cacophony.

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Badger


badger (BADGE-er) (verb): to annoy or pester

Think: bad jerk

Good jerks can get laughs, but a bad jerk will just badger you with his attempts at humor.

synonyms: harry, heckle, plague

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Aberration


aberration (ab-ur-A-shun) (noun): something unusual or unexpected

Think: a bare Asian

A bare Asian would be an aberration; Asians usually wear clothes.

synonyms: anomaly, oddity

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Abate


abate (uh-BATE) (verb): to lessen or reduce.

Think: rebate

The mail-in rebate on my new mobile phone will abate the high cost.

synonyms: ebb, subside, wane

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Abashed


abashed (uh-BASHED) (adjective): embarrassed.

Think: Bashful

Bashful the dwarf was so abashed when Snow White kissed him that he blushed.

synonyms: discomfited, disconcerted, fazed

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Abase


abase (uh-BASE) (verb): to degrade.

Think: a base

When making out with someone, if you give up a base too quickly then you just abase yourself.

synonyms: debase, lessen, vitiate

GRE Vocabulary Mnemonic of the Day: Clangorous


clangorous (CLANG-or-us) (adjective): noisy.


Think: clang


I love my son, but his third-grade orchestra is so clangorous that it sounds like they’re all just clanging on their instruments instead of playing the music.


synonyms: clamorous, clattering, uproarious


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