MSU GRE Vocabulary II

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  1. dogmatic
    • adj.relying upon doctrine or dogma, as opposed to evidence
    • An example of dogmatic is insisting that a feminist view is the one and only way to look at literature.
    • She's become so dogmatic lately that arguing with her is pointless.
  2. eclectic
    • adj.selecting or employing individual elements from a variety of sources:
    • "Many modern decorators prefer an eclectic style." (n: eclecticism)
  3. efficacy
    • n.effectiveness; capability to produce a desired effect
    • An example of efficacy is when a crime bill is effective at stopping crime.
    • questioned the efficacy of the alarms in actually preventing auto theft
  4. effluent
    • adj., nthe quality of flowing out. something that flows out, such as a stream from a river (n: effluence)
    • An example of effluent is sewage dumped into the Mississippi river.
    • The factory has been accused of discharging effluent into the river.
  5. emollient
    • adj., n.softening; something that softens
    • Aloe cream that you put on sunburned skin is an example of an emollient cream.
    • An approach to resolving conflict intended to create a peace treaty that will end a war between two fighting countries is an example of an emollient approach.
  6. emulate
    • strive to equal or excel (n: emulation)
    • An example of emulate is a little boy trying to be like his father.
    • She grew up emulating her sports heroes.
  7. encomium
    • n.a formal eulogy or speech of praise
    • An example of an encomium is the speech given to the recipient of a service award presented each year by a town’s city hall.
    • the encomiums bestowed on a teacher at her retirement ceremonies
  8. endemic
    • adj.prevalent in or native to a certain region, locality, or people:
    • "The disease was endemic to the region." Don't confuse this word with epidemic.
  9. enervate
    • weaken or destroy the strength or vitality of:
    • "The heat enervated everyone."
    • (adj: enervating)
  10. engender
    • give rise to, to propagate, to cause:
    • "His slip of the tongue engendered much laughter."
  11. enigma
    • n.puzzle; mystery:
    • "Math is an enigma to me."
    • (adj: enigmatic)
  12. ephemeral
    • adj.lasting for only a brief time, fleeting (n: ephemera)
    • An example of ephemeral is a plant blossom that only lasts one day.
    • the autumnal blaze of colors is always to be treasured, all the more so because it is so ephemeral
  13. equivocal
    • adj.ambiguous; unclear; subject to more than one interpretation -- often intentionally so:
    • "Republicans complained that Bill Clinton's answers were equivocal."
    • (v. equivocate)
  14. erudite
    • adj.scholarly; displaying deep intensive learning. (n: erudition)
    • An example of erudite is a professor of literature.
    • the most erudite people in medical research attended the conference
  15. esoteric
    • adj.intended for or understood by only a few:
    • "The esoteric discussion confused some people."
    • (n: esoterica)
  16. eulogy
    • n.a spoken or written tribute to the deceased (v. eulogize)
    • An example of a eulogy is a tribute given about someone at a funeral Mass.
    • He delivered a moving eulogy at his father's funeral.
  17. exacerbate
    • increase the bitterness or violence of; to aggravate:
    • "The decision to fortify the border exacerbated tensions."
  18. exculpate
    • demonstrate or prove to be blameless: 
    • "The evidence tended to exculpate the defendant."
    • (adj: exculpatory)
  19. exorbitant
    • adj.exceeding customary or normal limits, esp. in quantity or price:
    • "The cab fare was exorbitant."
  20. explicit
    • adj.fully and clearly expressed
    • An example of explicit is someone giving very straightforward directions to a location.
    • They were given explicit instructions.
  21. extant
    • existence, still existing:
    • "The only extant representative of that species."
  22. fathom
    • n., v.a measure of length (six feet) used in nautical settings. to penetrate to the depths of something in order to understand it:
    • "I couldn't fathom her reasoning on that issue."
  23. fawn
    • seek favor or attention; to act subserviently (n, adj: fawning)
    • An example of to fawn is how a young girl acts towards a boy she likes.
    • a student who could not wait to fawn over the new teacher
  24. feign
    • give false appearance or impression:
    • "He feigned illness to avoid going to school." (adj: feigned)
  25. fervid, fervent
    • adj.highly emotional; hot:
    • "The partisans displayed a fervent patriotism."
    • (n: fervor)
  26. fledgling
    • n., adj.a baby bird; an inexperienced person; inexperienced.
    • A company that has just opened its doors and gone into business is an example of a fledgling.
    • at hockey he's still a fledgling and needs to work on his basic skating skills
  27. florid
    • adj.flushed with a rosy color, as in complexion; very ornate and flowery:
    • "florid prose."
    • An example of someone who would be described as florid is a red-faced, flushed runner whose face has turned red with exertion.
    • gave a florid speech in honor of the queen's visit
  28. floundering
    • adj.struggling:
    • "We tried to save the floundering business."
  29. garrulous
    • adj.verbose; talkative; rambling:
    • "We tried to avoid our garrulous neighbor."
  30. gossamer
    • n., adj.fine cobweb on foliage; fine gauzy fabric; very fine:
    • "She wore a gossamer robe."
  31. guile
    • n.skillful deceit:
    • "He was well known for his guile."
    • (v. bequile; adj: beguiling. Note, however, that these two words have an additional meaning: to charm (v.) or charming (adj:), while the word guile does not generally have any such positive connotations)
  32. guileless
    • adj.honest; straightforward (n: guilelessness)
    • An example of someone who is guileless is an honest and innocent girl who just arrived in a big city and who believes that everyone is as honest and good as she.
    • she was an easygoing, guileless young woman who was comfortable just being herself
  33. hapless
    • adj.unfortunate
    • An example of hapless is someone who seems to break everything they touch.
    • She plays the hapless heroine who is unlucky in love.
  34. headlong
    • adj., adv.headfirst; impulsive; hasty. impulsively; hastily; without forethought:
    • "They rushed headlong into marriage."
  35. homogenous
    • adj.similar in nature or kind; uniform:
    • "a homogeneous society."
  36. iconoclast
    • who attacks traditional ideas or institutions or one who destroys sacred images (adj: iconoclastic)
    • An example of an iconoclast is someone who destroys pictures of Jesus.
    • An example of an iconoclast is someone who protests against democracy in the U.S.
    • notorious as an iconoclast, that music critic isn't afraid to go after sacred cows
  37. impecunious
    • adj.penniless; poor
    • An example of impecunious is someone living on the street.
    • they were so impecunious that they couldn't afford to give one another even token Christmas gifts
  38. imperious
    • adj.commanding
    • An example of imperious is a demand by a new house guest that you go to the store and buy him the type of drink he enjoys.
    • an imperious little boy who liked to tell the other scouts what to do
  39. implication
    • n.insinuation or connotation (v. implicate)
    • An example of implication is the policeman connecting a person to a crime even though there is no evidence.
    • I'm offended by his implication that women can't be good at mathematics.
  40. imply
    • suggest indirectly; to entail: 
    • "She implied she didn't believe his story." (n: implication)
  41. improvidence
    • absence of foresight; a failure to provide for future needs or events:
    • "Their improvidence resulted in the loss of their home."
  42. inchoate
    • an initial or early stage; incomplete; disorganized:
    • "The act of writing forces one to clarify incohate thoughts."
  43. incorrigible
    • adj.not capable of being corrected:
    • "The school board finally decided the James was incorrigible and expelled him from school."
  44. indelible
    • adj.permanent; unerasable; strong:
    • "The Queen made an indelible impression on her subjects."
  45. ineffable
    • adj.undescribable; inexpressible in words; unspeakable
    • An example of ineffable is overwhelming sadness that one does not know how to show.
    • An example of ineffable is the name of a deity that cannot be said out of respect.
    • an ineffable beauty descends upon the canyon as the sun begins to set
  46. infer
    • deduce:
    • "New genetic evidence led some zoologists to infer that the red wolf is actually a hybrid of the coyote and the gray wolf."
  47. ingenious
    • adj.clever:
    • "She developed an ingenious method for testing her hypothesis."(n: ingenuity)
  48. ingenuous
    • adj.unsophisticated; artless; straightforward; candid:
    • "Wilson's ingenuous response to the controversial calmed the suspicious listeners."
  49. inhibit
    • hold back, prohibit, forbid, or restrain (n: inhibition, adj: inhibited)
    • An example of inhibit is locking a door to keep people from coming in.
    • You shouldn't allow fear of failure to inhibit you.
  50. innocuous
    • adj.harmless; having no adverse affect; not likely to provoke strong emotion
    • An example of innocuous is playful teasing between friends.
    • He told a few innocuous jokes.
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MSU GRE Vocabulary II
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