30 GRE Words Beginning with “Q” “R” and “S” – 30 Words

quixotic

not sensible about practical matters

That’s a quixotic task at best, intended to illustrate possible outcomes rather than to provide precise forecasts, said Mr. Masters at Bernstein.
New York Times (Jun 8, 2013)
reconcile

bring into consonance or accord

In reality, reconciling Islamist theories with an economy perilously close to collapse has been difficult.
New York Times (May 2, 2013)
redundant

more than is needed, desired, or required

Such data is difficult to purge. As quickly as employees create content, corporate technology teams routinely make redundant backup copies.
Forbes (Jul 30, 2013)
refined

cultivated and genteel

Adam and Eve are not about blood-sucking and murder – but refined lovers of literature, science, music and learning in general.
Seattle Times (May 25, 2013)
rein

keep in check

“This shows why we need to review and rein in unfair town hall parking rules,” he said.
BBC (Jul 31, 2013)
remedial

tending or intended to rectify or improve

Last week, two police officers told me several colleagues were in heavily attended remedial classes for those who fail to record enough stops and arrests.
New York Times (May 28, 2012)
resolute

firm in purpose or belief

Never in my years has any president been so determined and resolute and outspoken on this subject.
Washington Post (Feb 21, 2013)
restive

impatient especially under restriction or delay

The delegates got so restive as he droned on – the phrase commentators used – that they actually cheered at the words “in closing.”
New York Times (Sep 4, 2012)
reverence

a feeling of profound respect for someone or something

But reverence has long since gone out of fashion, having been replaced in our culture by a pervasive ironic distance.
Slate (Apr 15, 2013)
robust

sturdy and strong in form, constitution, or construction

Facebook’s robust earnings numbers propelled company shares as much as 20% higher, and they’ve been going up ever since.
Time (Jul 31, 2013)
row

an angry dispute

Japan is embroiled in a bitter row over islands with China and is deeply concerned by North Korea’s nuclear ambitions.
BBC (Jul 26, 2013)
ruinous

extremely harmful; bringing catastrophe

And talk of shutting down the government – let alone actually going through with it – has proven counterproductive, even ruinous, to Republicans in the past.
Reuters (Jan 15, 2013)
rumination

a calm, lengthy, intent consideration

Like many an American road trip, the journey creates its own metaphor, familiar locales triggering memories and ruminations of years past.
Seattle Times (May 23, 2012)
sartorial

of or relating to tailoring or clothing

Sartorially, he favors unflashy suits and wiry John Lennon–style glasses.
Newsweek (Apr 29, 2013)
scant

less than the correct or legal or full amount

Reading these scant pages – I wish the curators had included more – is fascinating, but unsettling too.
The Guardian (Jul 13, 2013)
scathing

marked by harshly abusive criticism

In a scathing dissent joined by one other colleague, Judge Denny Chin declared Aereo to be a “sham” designed to circumvent U.S. copyright law.
Time (Jul 17, 2013)
schism

division of a group into opposing factions

Rebel forces, drawn largely from Syria’s Sunni majority, are far from united, with schisms along religious, geographic, political and economic lines.
Washington Post February 10, 2013
scrupulous

having ethical or moral principles

Through the years Ms. Raitt has been a scrupulous musician with a conscience, supporting human rights, feminist and environmental causes and playing countless benefit concerts.
New York Times (Mar 30, 2012)
sham

something that is a counterfeit; not what it seems to be

The whole edifice depends on tax havens and the webs of shell companies, artificial entities, fake transactions and sham trusts.
The Guardian (Jun 16, 2013)
skittish

unpredictably excitable, especially of horses

This shifting, mercurial work, alive with gurgling rhythmic figures and skittish violin bursts, was inspired by three Chagall paintings of Old Testament subjects.
New York Times (Jun 12, 2012)
sporadically

in an irregular or unpredictable manner

While anti-anarchist laws were sporadically enforced at first, they kicked in for real after the Russian Revolution.
Salon (Apr 27, 2013)
static

not in physical motion

His own static paintings look cramped in comparison to his animated work, and very much of their time.
The Guardian (Jan 9, 2013)
stigmatize

condemn or openly or formally or brand as disgraceful

He also says the way Japanese stigmatize failure prevents people from taking risks and starting up new firms.
Time (Oct 21, 2012)
stunning

causing bewilderment, shock, or insensibility

It is also stunning how little thought society has given to raising kids with two working parents.
Scientific American (Jul 21, 2013)
subjective

taking place within the mind and modified by individual bias

Food aversions are generally subjective, but there are definitely trends in unpopular textures.
The Guardian (Jul 2, 2013)
subtle

difficult to detect or grasp by the mind or analyze

However, most keepers are able to pick up on subtle hints that might indicate an animal isn’t feeling well.
Scientific American (Jul 18, 2013)
subversion

the act of overthrowing or destroying, as a government

These characters, led by rebel extraordinaire Guy Debord, were dead set on cultural subversion, changing the world through art and ideas.
BBC (Mar 2, 2011)
superfluous

more than is needed, desired, or required

A marked tendency in the new movements is to throw overboard superfluous technical baggage.
James Huneker
surpass

be or do something to a greater degree

Both measures surpassed previous record highs hit in late May.
BBC (Jul 11, 2013)
synoptic

presenting a summary or general view of a whole

The first three Gospels are usually called the Synoptic Gospels, because they give us one synopsis or common view of our Lord’s work.
Leighton Pullan

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