GRE Difficult Vocabulary Words, Randomly Selected

Here is a batch of randomly-selected difficult GRE Vocabulary Words*. To see more difficult words that tend to often appear on the GRE test, refresh this page. Study, review, and try to learn as many of these words as you can so that you can attain a high score on the verbal section of the exam.

However, as with all GRE vocabulary lists, memorizing words is not the best way to acquire and retain new vocabulary words. Instead, you should read critically, extensively, and often. And, use MyGRETutor's vocab tutor to keep track of the words that you have mastered, and to brush up on those words that you might have mastered in the past but might have slightly forgotten.

WordPart of Speech  Definition

sidereal adjPertaining to the stars.
concupiscible adjDesirable; driven by sexual lust or desire.
paladin nA champion of a cause; a knight-errant.
minacious adjThreatening.
plight vTo pledge; to give one's honor; to commit to a future deed.
pastiche nA literary or musical composition imitating a previous artist, often with a satirical undertone.
tract nA religious or political propaganda pamphlet.
fatuous adjSmug, and unconsciously foolish; unreal.
degust vTo savor; to taste with appreciation.
supercilious adjDisdainful characterized by haughty scorn; arrogant. 
pugilistic adjPertaining to fighting with one's hands; referring to boxing.
proscenium nThe part of a stage that is front of curtain.
prolix adjTiring; unduly long and strung out.
recreant adjCraven; disloyal; cowardly.
impute vTo ascribe to; to reference or refer to a person.
purloined adjStolen; embezzled.
bowdlerize vTo modify; to clean up; to amend by removing certain parts.
valetudinarian nA physically weak person who is overly -- and often morbidly -- concerned about his health.
cur nA mongrel dog; a mean or cowardly person.
puissance nStrength; force; might.

*We determine the difficulty of a word by keeping track of how many people get it right on the vocabulary tutor section of MyGRETutor. Easy words are those words whose definition, on average, is selected by at least 80% of users. Medium words are those words whose definition is, on average, correctly selected between 50 and 80 percent of the time, and difficult words are those words whose definition is correctly selected less than 50% of the time.