WORD LISTS

Challenge, List 8

November 30, 2022
This list of challenge words features some of the hardest words that you will encounter in the Verbal Reasoning section of the GRE. These are words that typically appear less frequently across different academic disciplines, so you are less likely to have encountered them before. Master these difficult words and watch your GRE score soar!
bacchanalian
In 1687, the minister Increase Mather, who believed that Christmas celebrations derived from the bacchanalian excesses of the Roman holiday Saturnalia, decried those consumed "in Revellings, in excess of wine, in mad mirth."
bawdy
During the 1920’s, according to the history the War kids recounted from their parents, War was a wild, bawdy place of dance halls and gambling houses.
bedizen
Is it too much to speculate that beneath the swirling tattoos, asymmetrically trimmed hair, and bedizened robes, you would recognize someone much closer to yourself, at least in certain respects, than your own ancestors?
cadge
When they served grilled cheese or chicken sandwiches for lunch, I would cadge extras from the children who hardly ever cleaned their plates.
carping
Despite the carping of younger critics, he remained ever faithful to his Romantic Realist principles.
cornucopia
Long rows of tables display a cornucopia of cheeses, olives, oils and bright vegetables and fruits, honeys and jams, and of course Marseille soaps.
evocative
Food souvenirs are food, but they’re also souvenirs, and as such are evocative of people and places.
extemporaneous
Many of the app’s users appear charmingly unpolished, posting shaky videos that cut their faces off at their foreheads or chins as they deliver breathless extemporaneous monologues.
feral
“There may very well be feral giraffes and feral hippos living in Tokyo and a polar bear living freely in Calcutta. We just don’t believe there was a tiger living in your lifeboat.”
gauche
“I’m gauche and awkward, I dress badly, I’m shy with people. I warned you in Monte Carlo how it would be. You think I’m not right for Manderley.”
interregnum
Oliver Cromwell headed the new English Commonwealth, and the period known as the English interregnum, or the time between kings, began.
meretricious
“Let us be thought over-much plain and simple, even bare, rather than gaudy, flashy, cheap and meretricious. Let us manifest the taste of gentlemen.”
minuscule
Microplastics— minuscule bits of bottles, bags, synthetic fibers and other plastic waste that have broken up in the environment—are influencing Earth’s climate as they circulate through the atmosphere.
peregrination
And thus the writer’s euphoric westward peregrinations, by motor car, kindled a new spirit of domestic US travel: On the Road rather than On the Railroad.
preempt
When she attended a talk with him, he would make sure to say it could have been better, or that the first ten minutes were boring, as though to preempt her own criticisms.
refulgent
There are few directors around with as much command of material culture as Coppola, who imbues the setting’s silks, crinolines, glassware and candle wax with refulgent depth and texture.
simian
Those monkeys had been infected with simian fever and would have died anyway.
tangential
So, I was listening to him talk and waiting for an opportunity to tell him—but he just kept talking and talking, and it was strange and tangential and boring.
tutelary
He appears as the protector of his younger self and as a kind of tutelary deity, infusing the story of his own life with a potent and implicitly political lesson.
valedictory
There was no farewell tour, and they released a valedictory song — “We All Go Back to Where We Belong” — that is among the most beautiful in the band’s catalog.

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