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

cloying adjExcessively distasteful; overly rich and sweet.
fetter vTo shackle; to chain; to bind.
scurf nScaly skin; dead epidermis matter that is shed.
beleaguer vTo besiege; to attack; harass; to best.
tacit adjTaken for granted; understood without being explicitly stated; not put into words.
patina nA green crust substance that accumulates on old bronze and copper surfaces.
platitude nA trite or banal statement; an object that is unoriginal.
degust vTo savor; to taste with appreciation.
nugatory adjWorthless; futile; trifling; unimportant.
ensconce vTo settle comfortably; place in a secure place.
trope nA figurative use of a word; the use of a rhetorical device.
glean vTo collect in small quantities; to gather over time.
supplicate vTo make a humble petition to; to pray humbly. 
demotic adjOf or for ordinary people; popular.
prosody nThe study of the metric structure of a poem or single verse; the art of versification.
obeisance nA bow; a gesture of homage.
inimical adjHostile; unfavorable; harmful; antagonistic.
doctrinaire adjFanatical; impractical; without regard to practical considerations.
arrogate vAttribute unjustly; take without right.
dint nMeans; effort; force.

*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.