Barron's SAT High-Frequency Word List

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Abate

Abate v. subside or moderate. Rather than leaving immediately, they waited for the storm to abate. Abatement, N.

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Aberrant

Aberrant adj. abnormal or deviant. Given the aberrant nature of the data, we came to doubt the validity of the entire experiment.

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Abrasive

Abrasive adj. rubbing away; tending to grind down. Just as abrasive cleaning powders can wear away a shiny finish, abrasive remarks can wear away a listener's patience. Abrade v.

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Abridge

Abridge v. condense or shorten. Because the publishers felt the public wanted a shorter version of War and Peace, they proceeded to abridge the novel.

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Absolute

Absolute adj. sparing in eating and drinking; temperate. Concerned whether her vegetarian son's abstemious diet provided him with sufficient protein, the worried mother pressed food on him.

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the worried mother pressed food on him.Abstemious • Abstemious adj. spring in eating and drinking. 4/23/12 . temperate. Concerned whether her vegetarian son's abstemious diet provided him with sufficient protein.

To him. he had never missed a meal. hunger was an abstract concept. 4/23/12 . not concrete. nonrepresentational.Abstract • Abstract adj. theoretical.

4/23/12 . difficult to understand. obscure. profound. not because she understands them but because she wants her friends to think she does. She carries around abstruse works of philosophy.Abstruse • Abstruse adj.

We asked our guide whether the ruins were accessible on foot. easy to approach. applaud. 4/23/12 . Acdaim v.Accessible • Accessible adj. obtainable.

4/23/12 . n. acclaim. every American victory in the Olympics and lamented every American defeat acclamation.Acclaim • Acclaim v. applaud. announce with great approval. The NBC sportscasters acclaimed .

Accolade • Accolade n. award of merit. 4/23/12 . In the world of public relations a "Clio" is the highest accolade an advertising campaign can receive.

recognize. 4/23/12 . admit. Although I acknowledge that the Beatels’ tunes sound pretty dated nowadays. I still prefer them to the “gangsta” rap songs my brothers play.Acknowledge • Acknowledge v.

she immediately acquiesced. 4/23/12 . n. Acquiescence. adj. When we asked her to participate in the play. agree without protesting.Acquiesce • Acquiesce v.. assent. acquiescent.

Acrimony.Acrimonious • Acrimonious adj. The candidate attacked his opponent in highly acrimonious terms. n. bitter in words or manner. 4/23/12 .

4/23/12 . brief and severe. keen. The acute young doctor realized immediately that the gradual deterioration of her patient's once-acute hearing was due to a chronic illness.Acute • Acute adj. not an acute one. quickly perceptive.

Adherent • Adherent n. supporter. the senator's onetime adherents quietly deserts him. In the wake of the scandal. 4/23/12 . follower.

Adjacent • Adjacent adj. neighboring. adjoining. You will find questions based on this reading passage located on the adjacent page. 4/23/12 .

skillful. 4/23/12 . nimble. The juggler's admirers particularly enjoyed his adroit handling of difficult balancing tricks.Adroit • Adroit adj.

Adulation • Adulation n. admiration. 4/23/12 . flattery. The rock star relished the adulation she received from her groupies and yesmen.

The young wrestler struggled to overcome his adversary.Adversary • Adversary n. opponent. 4/23/12 .

The recession had a highly adverse effect on Father's investment portfolio: he lost so much money that he could no longer afford the butler and the upstairs maid. n. Adversity. hostile. unfavorable. 4/23/12 .Adverse Adverse adj.

Advocate Advocate v. plead for. 4/23/12 . Noted abolitionists such as Frederick Douglass and Sojourner Truth advocated the eradication of the Southern institution of slavery. Also n. urge.

dealing with or capable of appreciation of the beautiful. Aesthete. n. 4/23/12 .Aesthetic Aesthetic adj. artistic. The beauty of Tiffany's stained glass appealed to Esther's aesthetic sense.

was amazed at how affable his new employer was. 4/23/12 . warmly friendly Accustomed to cold.Affable Affable adj. aloof supervisors Nicholas. easily approachable.

4/23/12 .Affinity Affinity n. natural liking. similarity. Octavia felt an immediate affinity for the folk dancers she met. their love of dance was hers as well. kinship.

Despite Tom's affirmations of innocence. solemn pledge by one who refuses to take an oath. 4/23/12 . positive assertion. Aunt Polly still suspected he had eaten the pie.Affirmation Affirmation n. confirmation.

attacker. 4/23/12 .Aggressor Aggressor n. Before you punish both boys for fighting. see weather you can determine which one was the aggressor.

4/23/12 . Heather's attempts to alienate Amy from Ellen failed because the two friends had complete faith in one another. make hostile. separate.Alienate Alienate v.

he was rapidly gaining weight and could go home in a couple of weeks.Alleviate Alleviate v. relieve. though he'd been born prematurely. The doctor's reassuring remarks alleviated June's fears for the baby. 4/23/12 .

4/23/12 . standoffish. instead of joining in their conversations.Aloof Aloof adj. he remained silent and aloof. reserved. His classmates thought James was a snob because. apart.

Eugene Lang performed a truly altruistic deed. 4/23/12 . Altruism.Altruistic • Altruistic adj. unselfishly generous. n. In providing tutorial assistance and college scholarships for hundreds of economically disadvantaged youths. concerned for others.

The proctor's ambiguous instructions thoroughly confused us. we didn't know which columns we should mark and which we should leave blank. 4/23/12 . unclear or doubtful in meaning. Ambiguity. n.Ambiguous Ambiguous adj.

Torn between loving her parents on minute and hating them the next. the state of having contradictory or conflicting emotional attitudes. adj. Ambivalent. she was confused by ambivalence of her feelings.Ambivalence Ambivalence n. 4/23/12 .

improve.Ameliorate Ameliorate v. 4/23/12 . make more satisfactory. Carl became a union organizer because he wanted to join the fight to ameliorate the working conditions in the factory.

generally for the better.Amend • Amend v. change. Hoping to amend his circumstances. Luong lft Vietnam for the United States. 4/23/12 . correct.

we shall send you a copy. lacking shape or definition. right now. formless. our plans are still amorphous. 4/23/12 .Amorphous Amorphous adj. As soon as we have decided on our itinerary.

abundant.Ample • Ample adj. Bond had ample opportunity to escape. Why did he let us catch him? 4/23/12 .

Analogous.Analogy • Analogy m.adj. parallelism.analogy compares the body's immune system to an army whose 'defending troops are the lymphocytes or white blood cells. similarity. A well-known . 4/23/12 .

Anarchist Anarchist n. advocate of abolishing authority. 4/23/12 . person who seeks to overturn the established government. Katya maintained she wished only to make changes in our government. Denying she was an anarchist. not to destroy entirely. Anarchy. n.

Rather than make concrete proposals for welfare reform. short account of an amusing or interesting event. Anecdotal.Anecdote Anecdote n. 4/23/12 . adj. President Ronald Reagan told anecdotes about poor people who became wealthy despite their impoverished backgrounds.

active enmity. the reform candidate seemed almost to invite the animosity of the party's leaders. 4/23/12 . By advocating cuts in campaign spending and limits on congressional powers.Animosity Animosity n.

Antagonism. opposed. hostile. n. Despite his lawyers' best efforts to stop him. 4/23/12 . the angry prisoner continued to make antagonistic remarks to the judge.Antagonistic Antagonistic adj.

4/23/12 . medicine to counteract a poison or disease.Antidote Antidote n. the local poison control hotline told Marge how to minister the antidote. When Marge's child accidentally swallowed some cleaning fluid.

Antiquated • Antiquated adj. Philip had grown so accustomed to editing his articles on word processor that he thought typewriters were to antiquated for him to use. old-fashioned. n. 4/23/12 . Antiquity. obsolete.

contrast. innocence the antithesis of guilt. 4/23/12 . Good is the antithesis of evil. direct opposite of or to.Antithesis • Antithesis n.

adj. lack of caring. she could not understand the apathy of people who never bothered to vote. A firm believer in democratic government. indifference.Apathy Apathy n. 4/23/12 . Apathetic.

Ted invented apocryphal tales of his adventures in the big city. untrue.Apocryphal Apocryphal adj. To impress his friends. made up. 4/23/12 .

4/23/12 . However. relieve. they couldn't calm him until they appeased his hunger by giving him a bottle.Appease Appease v. Tom and Jody tried to appease their crying baby by offering him one toy after another. pacify or soothe.

4/23/12 . increase in worth. which appreciated in value considerably over the years. be thoroughly conscious of.Appreciate Appreciate v. Little Orphan Annie truly appreciated the stocks Daddy Warbucks gave her. be thankful for.

capture. adj. 4/23/12 .Apprehension Apprehension n. fear. discernment. Apprehension. The tourist refused to drive his rental car through downtown Miami because he felt some apprehension that he might be carjacked.

4/23/12 .Arable Arable adj. The first settlers wrote home glowing reports of the New World. praising its vast acres of arable-land ready for the plow. fit for growing crops.

randomly selected without any reason. unreasonable or capricious. The coach claimed the team lost because the umpire made some arbitrary calls.Arbitrary Arbitrary adj. 4/23/12 . based solely on one's unrestricted will or judgment.

Archaic Archaic adj. 4/23/12 . "Methinks.“ ”thee. antiquated." and “thou” are archaic words that are no longer part of our standard vocabulary.

inspired by her enthusiasm for the cause. Ardent. passion. soon all her fellow demonstrators were busily making posters and handing out flyers. 4/23/12 . Katya's ardor was catching. heat. zeal.Ardor Ardor n. adj.

dry. barren. 4/23/12 .Arid Arid adj. The cactus has adapted to survive in an arid environment.

Convinced that Emma thought she was better than anyone else in the class. arrogant. pride. haughtiness. adj. 4/23/12 . Ed rebuked her for her arrogance.Arrogance Arrogance n.

effective. Her articulate presentation of the advertising campaign impressed her employers so much that they put her in charge of the project. Also v.Articulate Articulate adj. distinct. 4/23/12 .

either handmade or massproduced. 4/23/12 . discovered in the ruins of Asia Minor but came to no conclusion about the culture they represented. Archaeologists debated the significance of the artifacts. object made by human beings.Artifact Artifact n.

as opposed to artist.Artisan Artisan n. manually skilled worker. Elderly artisans from Italy trained Harlem teenagers to carve the stone figures that would decorate the new wing of the cathedral 4/23/12 . craftsman.

controlling influence.Ascendancy Ascendancy n. 4/23/12 . leaders of religious cults maintain ascendancy over their followers by methods that can verge on brainwashing.

self-indulgent young man felt oddly drawn to the ascetic life led by members of some monastic orders. practicing self-denial.Ascetic Ascetic adj. The wealthy. Also n. austere. 4/23/12 .

long for. Because he aspired to a career in professional sports. n.Aspire Aspire v. 4/23/12 . Aspiration. seek to attain. Philip enrolled in a graduate program in sports management.

he had assuaged his appetite but not his grief.Assuage Assuage v. satisfy (hunger). ease or lessen(pain). soothe (anger). One gallon later. tried to assuage his heartache by indulging in ice cream. 4/23/12 . Jilted by Jane. Dick.

Astute Astute adj. Expecting Miss Marple to be woolly-headed old lady. wise. 4/23/12 . Inspector Craddock was startled by the astute observations she made. shrewd.

Stan's biceps had atrophied somewhat. n.Atrophy Atrophy v. however. After three months in a cast. Also. waste away. he was sure that if he pumped iron for a while he would soon build them up. 4/23/12 .

as their interpreter and helping them deal with American society. considerate.Attentive Attentive adj. acting . thoughtful. Thuy is very attentive to her Vietnamese-speaking parents. 4/23/12 . paying attention.

I attribute her success in science to the encouragement she received from her parents. explain. 4/23/12 . ascribe.Attribute Attribute v.

n. 4/23/12 . death-defying leap to freedom. Audacity. daring.Audacious Audacious adj. bold. Audiences cheered as luke Skywalker and Princess leia made their audacious. escaping Darth Vader's troops.

salary by selling Tupperware at parties and at friends' homes. 4/23/12 . Beth augmented her inadequate. increase.Augment Augment v. add to.

sternness. Austere. severity. adj. lack of luxuries. 4/23/12 . somewhat forbidding group. their demeanor reflected their austerity. The bishops charged with conducting the heresy inquiry were a solemn. strict economy.Austerity Austerity n.

Forced to obey the dictates of the authoritarian regime. 4/23/12 . Also n. the people had no control over their won destiny. nondemocratic.Authoritarian Authoritarian adj. favoring or exercising total control.

Although the University of California at Berkeley is just one part of the state university system.Autonomous Autonomous adj. in many ways Cal Berkeley is autonomous. self-governing. for it runs several programs that are not subject 4/23/12 .

Their mutual aversion was so great that they refused to speak to one another. firm dislike.Aversion Aversion n. 4/23/12 .

trite. 4/23/12 . n. hackneyed. Was it Pendleton's stale plot or his cliche-ridden dialogue that made his play seem so banal? Banality. commonplace.Banal Banal adj.

Bane Bane n. lack of public transportation is the bane of urban life. 4/23/12 . cause of ruin.

give a false impression. hard-bitten exterior belied his inner sensitivity 4/23/12 . His coarse.Belie Belie v. contradict.

Parents should not belittle their children's early attempts at drawing. disparage. make fun of.Belittle Belittle v. but should encourage their efforts 4/23/12 .

quarrelsome.Belligerent Belligerent adj. Whenever he had too much to drink.he became belligerent and tried to pick fights with strangers. . 4/23/12 .

4/23/12 . Fezziwag was a benevolent employer who wished to make Christmas merrier for young Scrooge and his other employees.Benevolent Benevolent adj. generous. Mr. charitable.

shrewd observer of human nature. not malignant. Though her benign smile and gentle bearing made Miss Marple seem a sweet little old lady. 4/23/12 . kindly.Benign Benign adj. favorable. in reality she was a tough-minded.

Bequest n. Although Maud had intended to bequeath the family home to her nephew.Bequeath Bequeath v. leave to someone by a will. hand down. 4/23/12 . she died before changing her will.

prejudiced.Biased Biased adj. 4/23/12 . slanted. Because the judge played gold regularly with the district attorney's father. we feared he might be might be biased.

dull. soothing. mild.Bland Bland adj. Blandness. stick to a bland diet. n. 4/23/12 . Unless you want your stomach lining to be eaten away.

the Dodgers were the holiest of holies.Blasphemy Blasphemy n. sacrilege. In my father's house. Blasphemous. cursing. irreverence. to cheer for another team was to utter words of blasphemy. adj. 4/23/12 .

reinforce. support. The debaters amassed file boxes full of evidence to bolster their arguments.Bolster Bolster v. 4/23/12 .

I wouldn't mind Bob's being such a braggart if I felt he'd done anything worth bragging about. 4/23/12 . boastful person.Braggart Braggart n.

It takes brawn to become a champion weight lifter. adj. 4/23/12 . sturdiness. muscular strength. Brawny.Brawn Brawn n.

4/23/12 . briefness. conciseness.Brevity Brevity n. you are charged for every word. Brevity is essential when you send a telegram or cablegram.

Buttress Buttress v. The attorney came up with several farfetched arguments in a vain attempt to buttress his weak case. 4/23/12 . Also n. support. prop up.

inharmonious. n. Do the students in the orchestra enjoy the cacophonous sounds they make when they're tuning up? I don't know how they can stand the racket. Cacophony.Cacophonous Cacophonous adj. 4/23/12 . discordant.

wheedle. Cajolery. 4/23/12 . n. Diane tried to cajole her father into letting her drive the family car. coax.Cajole Cajole v.

likely. 4/23/12 . Her conventional suit was one calculated to appeal to the conservative judges. Lexy’s choice of clothes to wear to the debate tournament was carefully calculated.Calculated • Calculated adj. deliberately planned.

candid. adj. The candor with which Gene spoke during the job interview impressed us all. it was clear he held nothing back.Candor Candor n. frankness. 4/23/12 .

incalculable. The storm was capricious.Capricious Capricious adj. 4/23/12 . changing its course constantly. fickle.

burlesque. distortion. The caricatures he drew away emphasized a personal weakness of the people he burlesqued also v. 4/23/12 .Caricature Caricature n.

critical.Censorious Censorious adj. 4/23/12 . Censorious people delight in casting blame.

4/23/12 . Also n. blame.Censure Censure v. criticize. The senator was censured for his inappropriate behavior.

4/23/12 . Lou thought he had a good chance of doing so. certainty. Though there was no certitude of his getting the job.Certitude Certitude n.

When they realized that the Wizard didn't know how to get them back to Kansas.Charlatan Charlatan n. pretender to knowledge. Dorothy and her companions were indignant that they'd been duped by a charlatan. quack. 4/23/12 .

4/23/12 .Chronicle Chronicle v. report. Also n. record (in chronological order). The gossip columnist was paid to chronicle the latest escapades of socially prominent celebrities.

courteous and polite. Although Internal Revenue Service agents are civil servants. they are not always civil to suspected tax cheats. Civility. having to do with citizens or the state. n 4/23/12 .Civil Civil adj.

Clamor
Clamor n. noise. The clamor of the children at play outside made it impossible for her to take a nap. Also v.

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Clemency
Clemency n. disposition to be lenient; mildness, as of the weather. Why did the defense lawyer look pleased when his case was sent to Judge Bland's chambers? Bland was known for her clemency toward first offenders. Clemency, adj.

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Coercion
Coercion n. use of force to get someone's compliance. They forced him to obey, but only by using great coercion, coerce, v.

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The statue of the Minuteman commemorates the valiant soldiers who fought in the Revolutionary War.Commemorate Commemorate v. 4/23/12 . honor the memory of.

The prosecutor presented a well reasoned case. but the defense attorney's compelling arguments for leniency won over the jury. irresistible in effect. 4/23/12 .Compelling Compelling adj. overpowering.

We planned to compile a list of the words most frequently used on the SAT examinations. accumulate.Compile Compile v. assemble. 4/23/12 . gather.

The design for the new school had to be in compliance with the local building code. not defiance. readiness to yield. 4/23/12 . I expect compliance. conformity in fulfilling requirements.Compliance Compliance n. v. When I give an order. Comply.

mental calmness. Even the latest crisis at work failed to shake Nancy's composure. 4/23/12 .Composure Composure n.

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