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Flashcards in GRE Vocab Crash Course Deck (36):
1

Define:

burnish
(bur-nish)

v. to polish or make shine
n. a shiny appearance

The store owner's son's only job was to burnish the statues in the window every day.

2

Define:

buttress
(but-riss)

n. a supporting structure
v. to support or encourage

The parents decided to buttress the after-school programs that were in danger of ending by making donations.

3

Define:

equivocate
(i-kwiv-uh-keyt)

v. to make vague, unclear statements

The mayor equivocated when confronted about his use of public funds.

4

Define:

paragon
(par-uh-gon)

n. a model of excellence

The man was a paragon of virtue who had never stolen so much as a loaf of bread in his life.

5

Define:

cacophony
(kuh-kof-uh-nee)

n. unpleasant, discordant sounds

The orchestra's first attempt to play together was a cacophony of jarring notes.

6

Define:

mawkish
(maw-kish)

adj. very sentimental

The group of graduating seniors was a mawkish sight, crying and taking hundreds of pictures.

7

Define:

cajole
(kuh-djohl)

v. to make someone do something with flattery or promises

Mother cajoled her into driving the other children to school, promising to make her favorite dinner.

8

Define:

dogmatic
(dawg-matt-ik)

adj. rigidly fixed in opinion or expression in an arrogant manner

The dogmatic theorist refused to listen to any other possibilities.

9

Define:

calibrate
(kal-ih-brehyt)

v. to check or balance the scale of a measuring device with a standard scale

The new thermometer needed to be calibrated before it could be used.

10

Define:

perdition
(per-dish-uhn)

n. a state of final spiritual ruin, loss of soul, damnation
n. hell

Poor moral choices led Johnny down the road to perdition.

11

Define:

beseech
(bih-seech)

v. to request urgently

The dying man beseeched his family to visit him.

12

Define:

canny
(can-ee)

adj. careful; shrewd

John was a canny negotiator; no matter how bad his bargaining position, he would always come out on top.

13

Define:

seminal
(sem-uh-nl)

adj. original and influential

The seminal works of the artist developed into a new style of interpretation.

14

Define:

cantankerous
(can-tang-kurr-us)

adj. difficult to handle; ill-tempered

The worst part about working in customer service was having to deal with irate, cantankerous callers.

15

Define:

semantic
(suh-man-tick)

adj. related to the meaning of words

Susan felt that the abortion debate had become too focused on semantic arguments.

16

Define:

serrate
(sare-ate)

adj. having toothed edges ("serrated" is an alternate form of the adj.)

Kate used the serrate edge of the knife to cut through the tough meat.

17

Define:

sever
(sev-er)

v. to cut off

Unfortunately, to prevent the infection from spreading, the doctors had to sever the infected parts of the hand.

18

Define:

sinuous
(sin-you-us)

adj. twisting and winding
adj. not direct

The sinuous path through the mountains was probably the most dangerous route to take.

19

Define:

solicitude
(suh-liss-ih-tood)

n. caring about others' well being

Though she claims not to have any feelings for Julio, she showed a great deal of solicitude when she learned of his illness.

19

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20

Define:

solidarity
(sol-ih-dare-ih-tee)

n. a feeling of camaraderie with others due to shared goals

Several townspeople expressed solidarity with the union members by protesting with them.

21

Define:

soluble
(sol-yuh-bull)

adj. capable of being dissolved in a liquid
adj. capable of being solved

Certain medicines are soluble in water so they can be taken with ease.

22

Define:

solvent
(sol-vunt)

adj. able to meet financial obligations
n. a substance that can dissolve other substances

To remain solvent, the business was forced to sell its overseas operations.

23

Define:

soporific
(sop-uh-riff-ik)

adj. able to cause sleepiness
n. a substance that causes sleepiness

Bill's new cold medication has soporific side effects that interfere with his ability to drive.

24

Define:

emulate
(em-yuh-lehyt)

v. to try to imitate or exceed another's actions

Nancy wanted to emulate her older sister and so began to study more often.

25

Define:

enamor
(ih-nam-er)

v. to make infatuated; to cause to love

He was so enamored of her that he thought about her every day.

26

Define:

endemic
(in-dem-ik)

adj. originating in, native to, particular to

There are some deadly diseases that are endemic to the tropics.

27

Define:

endow
(in-dow)

v. to give (esp. an inheritance or genetic trait)

Christine's mother endowed her with beautiful green eyes.

28

Define:

dour
(doo-er)

adj. harsh; gloomy, forbidding
adj. stern, humorless

The old headmaster never had anything but a dour expression to offer.

29

Define:

enervate
(in-er-vehyt)

v. to make weaker

The heat enervated the soccer players' strength with each passing minute, and by halftime most were in no condition to continue playing.

30

Define:

insouciant
(in-soo-see-uhnt)

adj. unconcerned, nonchalant, lighthearted

Michael's insouciant attitude towards schoolwork led to poor test grades.

31

Define:

evince
(ih-vins)

v. to clearly prove something, to indicate

Her choice not to enter into an argument with him evinced her maturity.

32

Define:

enfranchise
(in-fran-chahyz)

v. to give rights of citizenship, esp. the right to vote

When women were finally enfranchised, spontaneous celebrations occurred throughout the country.

33

Define:

filigree
(fil-ih-gree)

n. an ornamental work, esp. delicate and lacelike
v. to adorn

The wine glass was filigreed with a delicate pattern of grape vines.

34

Define:

engender
(in-djen-dur)

v. to cause, to lead to

The poor ventilation in the factory engendered health problems amongst the workers.

35

Define:

apocryphal
(uh-pok-ruh-fuhl)

adj. of dubious origin; of doubtful authenticity

I believe all stories of alien abduction are apocryphal.