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MAT Word List — General Vocabulary

Analogies involving general vocabulary (as distinguished from the vocabulary of specific academic fields) account for 15-20 percent of the Miller Analogies Test. The 165 words on this page are just the sort to which the MAT test makers resort in designing these test items. Review this list to determine the extent to which you're ready for this portion of the MAT.

NOTE: This list is here mainly to help you gauge your current knowledge of MAT-level vocabulary. Expect to find no more than a few of these words on your actual exam.
  1. abate (v) to put an end to; to decrease in amount, number, or degree
  2. aberration (n) deviation from the normal or usual
  3. abeyance (n) a condition of suspended activity
  4. abjure (v) to renounce (give up or put aside voluntarily) solemnly, esp. by formal declaration
  5. abrogate (v) to revoke, annul, or rescind
  6. acumen (n) mental keenness and acuteness; discernment
  7. adumbrate (v) to foretell, foreshadow, or prophesy vaguely
  8. affable (adj) agreeable and good-natured
  9. ambivalent (adj) indecisive due to conflicting feelings about a person or action
  10. aphoristic (adj) obvious or well-known, as regarding a general truth
  11. apprise (v) to acquaint, notify, or instruct
  12. ardent (adj) characterized by warmth of feeling; fervid; zealous
  13. asperity (n) roughness or bitterness, esp. regarding temper
  14. assail (v) to attack violently
  15. assay (n) a test or analysis to determine characteristics, esp. of a metal
  16. audacious (adj) daring or adventurous
  17. belie (v) to mislead or misrepresent
  18. beneficent (adj) producing good by acts of kindness
  19. berate (v) to scold harshly; upbraid; censure
  20. bereft (adj) deprived of; lacking
  21. blandishment (n) speech or action intended to flatter, coax, or cajole
  22. blithe (adj) lightheartedly joyful or cheerful
  23. bombast (n) pretentious, wordy speech or writing
  24. cadge (v) to sponge off of (another person); freeload; mooch
  25. capricious (adj) acting impulsively and whimsically (without care)
  26. captious (adj) inclined to find fault
  27. chary (adj) cautious; circumspect
  28. cloistered (adj) secluded; hidden away from the world
  29. cogent (adj) persuasive or compelling
  30. cogitate (v) to ponder or contemplate
  31. comely (adj) good-looking; attractive
  32. commiserate (v) to feel or express pity for another
  33. complaisant (adj) eager to please; obliging
  34. conscript (v) to select or enroll by compulsion, esp. for military service
  35. consign (v) to transfer goods to another for subsequent sale
  36. contravene (v) to act contrary to
  37. contrite (adj) repentant; regretful
  38. convivial (adj) enjoying the pleasures of companionship, eating, and drinking; jovial
  39. convoke (v) to call together for a meeting; convene
  40. corroborate (v) to support (help prove) with evidence
  41. culpable (adj) worthy or deserving of blame, as for a wrongful act; liable
  42. dally (v) to act playfully; to waste time
  43. decorous (adj) behaving in a respectful, correct manner
  44. decry (v) to belittle publicly; disparage; slander; denigrate
  45. deride (v) to make fun of or scoff at; ridicule
  46. descry (v) to catch sight of or discover by observation or investigation
  47. diatribe (n) an angry or bitter attack in speech or writing
  48. disaffect (v) to make unfriendly where a friendly relationship previously existed; estrange
  49. discomfit (v) to thwart or frustrate
  50. disinter (v) to dig up (unearth); exhume
  51. doctrinaire (adj) merely theoretical, without regard to practical considerations; dogmatic or authoritarian
  52. dote (v) to pamper adoringly and attentively; coddle
  53. duplicity (n) deception by pretending
  54. effusive (adj) gushing; characterized by unrestrained uttering (talking)
  55. elucidate (v) to clarify by illustration, explanation, or interpretation
  56. enamored (adj) in love; infatuated (having a crush); smitten
  57. encomium (n) high or glowing praise; acclaim
  58. entreat (v) to ask earnestly or urgently; beseech; implore
  59. equable (adj) even-tempered; characterized by a lack of unpleasant extremes
  60. equanimity (n) composure (dignified calmness)
  61. equivocate (v) to dodge or evade (a question or issue) through the use of ambiguous or misleading language; prevaricate
  62. errant (adj) going astray, esp. doing wrong
  63. expostulate (v) to reason with a person, esp. in order to dissuade (persuade against); remonstrate
  64. extant (adj) still in existence; not destroyed
  65. extemporaneous (adj) not planned ahead of time; impromptu; spontaneous
  66. extenuate (v) to treat as less serious or important than is apparent; mitigate
  67. fawn (v) to show affection (as a dog for its master); to court favor in a cringing or flattering manner
  68. feckless (adj) worthless or meaningless; ineffectual or weak
  69. feign (v) to intentionally give a false appearance
  70. felicitous (adj) aptly expressed; possessing the ability to express in a suitable, fitting manner
  71. flagging (adj) characterized by a decline in spirit, interest, or attention
  72. furtive (adj) sneaky or sly; stealthy; surreptitious
  73. germane (adj) pertinent; relevant
  74. gist (n) the main point of a matter
  75. glean (v) to collect (pick up) patiently — little by little; garner; cull
  76. goad (v) to urge; spur; prod
  77. gratuitous (adj) given or done freely, without compensation
  78. grudging (adj) reluctant to give
  79. harrow (v) to torment or torture; vex
  80. impart (v) to make known; to transmit, esp. information
  81. impede (v) to interfere with the progress of; hinder; obstruct; hamper
  82. impend (v) to hover or hang threateningly; loom
  83. imperious (adj) domineering or overbearing; commanding or lordly
  84. impugn (v) to call into question; to oppose as false; gainsay
  85. incise (v) to cut into
  86. incursion (n) sudden, temporary invasion; raid; attack
  87. inimical (adj) adverse or unfavorable; hostile or unfriendly
  88. inimitable (adj) without peer or match; not capable of being imitated
  89. iniquitous (adj) wicked or immoral
  90. innocuous (adj) harmless; benign; inoffensive
  91. insipid (adj) uninteresting; flavorless; flat; stale
  92. insolent (adj) showing disrespect or contempt through behavior or language
  93. intractable (adj) not easily controlled; obstinate
  94. inveigle (v) to entice or win over by ingenuity or flattery
  95. inviolate (adj) not violated; unprofaned
  96. ire (n) anger; wrath
  97. jibe (v) to be in agreement or accord
  98. lassitude (n) weariness or fatigue; languor
  99. loll (v) to lounge; loaf; laze
  100. lucid (adj) clear-minded; easily understood; bright or shiny
  101. macerate (v) to cause to waste away; to soften and break apart by moistening
  102. malinger (v) to pretend to be ill so as to avoid duty
  103. meretricious (adj) gaudy; tawdry; flashy
  104. nascent (adj) coming into existence; beginning to grow
  105. obsequious (adj) humbly or overly attentive, as to a person in authority; fawning; sycophantic
  106. occlude (v) to obstruct, shut in, or close up
  107. onerous (adj) oppressive or burdensome
  108. ossified (adj) turned to bone; fossilized
  109. ostracize (v) to exclude from a group by common consent
  110. palpable (adj) evident; obvious; manifest
  111. panegyric (n) an oration or writing of praise for a person (esp. a eulogy) or thing
  112. parsimonious (adj) excessively frugal or sparing; miserly
  113. peripatetic (adj) walking or traveling about; itinerant
  114. parry (v) to evade, dodge, or ward off (as in fencing)
  115. pedantic (adj) making an excessive show of learning; overly concerned with rules and details; didactic
  116. peruse (v) to examine or study; scrutinize
  117. pied (adj) having patches of two or more colors; particolored
  118. pithy (adj) full of substance, vigor, and meaning (as in a pithy observation or remark), usually concise and to-the-point
  119. poignant (adj) deeply affecting (moving) the emotions; keenly distressing
  120. placate (v) to quiet or calm; appease; pacify
  121. plaintive (adj) expressing sorrow or melancholy; mournful; lugubrious
  122. pliant (adj) bending or yielding readily; easily influenced; compliant; acquiescent
  123. pragmatic (adj) emphasizing practicality and realistic consequences
  124. precept (n) a direction (instruction) given as a rule or principle of conduct; maxim; axiom
  125. probity (n) integrity; uprightness; honesty
  126. proclivity (n) natural inclination of tendency; bent; disposition
  127. prodigious (adj) extraordinary, esp. in size or amount; wonderful or marvelous
  128. prolix (adj) tediously long and wordy in speech or writing
  129. propriety (n) conformity to established standards of proper behavior or manners
  130. protract (v) to draw out or lengthen in time; prolong
  131. rail (v) to complain or denounce vehemently
  132. raze (v) to tear down; demolish; level to the ground
  133. recalcitrant (adj) resisting authority or control; rebellious; refractory
  134. rectitude (n) moral virtue or strength
  135. recumbent (adj) lying down; prone; prostrate; supine
  136. regale (v) to give lavish pleasure to; delight; amuse
  137. relegate (v) to send or assign to a particular class, position or condition (especially an inferior one)
  138. repine (v) to be fretfully (agitatedly) discontent
  139. repugnant (adj) repulsive; offensive; revolting
  140. resplendent (adj) shining brilliantly or brightly
  141. sate (v) to fully satisfy an appetite or desire; satiate
  142. seemly (adj) fitting or proper with respect to propriety and good taste
  143. sere (adj) dry; withered
  144. sinecure (n) comfortable job or position requiring little work
  145. slake (v) to satisfy thirst or desire
  146. sodden (adj) soaked or drenched
  147. soporific (adj) causing sleepiness; sleepy or drowsy
  148. sordid (adj) dirty or filthy; morally shameful; meanly selfish
  149. spurious (adj) not genuine or authentic; bogus; counterfeit
  150. spurn (v) to reject with disdain; shun
  151. stanch (v) to stop the flow of
  152. stygian (adj) devilish; diabolical
  153. tacit (adj) silent; understood without being openly expressed; implicit
  154. temperance (n) showing moderation and restraint when indulging in appetites and passions
  155. temporize (v) to gain time by delaying with evasiveness or indecisiveness
  156. tout (v) to solicit support for by praising or boasting about
  157. unstinting (adj) unrestricted or unlimited in quantity, amount, or degree, esp. regarding devotion or charity
  158. untenable (adj) indefensible, esp. an argument; unreasonable; unsupportable
  159. vacillate (v) to waver in opinion or decision
  160. vagary (n) an unpredictable, erratic, or whimsical idea or occurrence; caprice
  161. vanquish (v) to conquer or subdue by superior force
  162. vex (v) to annoy, anger, or provoke; abrade; perturb
  163. vitiate (v) to impair the quality of; mar; degrade
  164. waft (v) to drift or float over water or through the air
  165. wield (v) to exercise or use, esp. a weapon or instrument; to gain control over