GRE Vocabulary: Using Word Roots

GRE Vocabulary: Using Word Roots

Vocabulary is tested in many ways on the GRE which is why it’s important to build your GRE-level vocabulary as you study for the exam. During the Verbal section, your knowledge of vocabulary will be directly tested with Sentence Equivalence, Text Completion, and Reading Comprehension questions. Many students find GRE Verbal to be one of the most challenging sections on the test because of the breadth of vocabulary tested. Good old fashioned memorization can be an effective strategy, but it’s time-consuming and may not be the most efficient course of action, especially if you only have a month or two until your GRE test date. One way to increase your GRE vocabulary knowledge is to study word roots. Learning word roots will help you recognize the basic meaning of GRE-level words, enhancing your test prep.

[ KEEP READING: How to Study for the GRE in Two Months ]

How do word roots help you build your GRE vocabulary?

Word roots can help you in two major ways on the GRE. First, instead of learning one word at a time, you can learn a whole group of words that contain a certain root. They’ll be related in meaning, so if you remember one, it will be easier for you to remember others. Second, roots can often help you decode an unknown GRE word. If you recognize a familiar root, you could get a good enough grasp of the word to answer the question. 

Keep reading for a list of word roots that will give you the component parts of many typical GRE vocabulary words. This list is a starting point and a quick review, not an exhaustive guide (though it is lengthy!). Roots are given in their most common forms, with their most common or broadest definitions; often, other forms and meanings exist. Similarly, the definitions for the words given as examples may be incomplete, and other senes of those words may exist. To boost your GRE Verbal prep, get in the habit of looking up unfamiliar words in a good, current dictionary—whether on paper or on the Internet—and be sure to check their etymologies while you’re there.  

[ RELATED: Top 52 GRE Vocabulary Words ]


GRE Vocabulary Root List

Unlock access to our free GRE Vocabulary Root List.

GRE Vocabulary: Kaplan’s Root List


A/AN: not, without
agnostic: one who believes the existence of God is not provable
amoral: neither moral nor immoral; having no relation to morality
atrophy: the wasting away of body tissue
AB: off, away from, apart, down
abdicate: to renounce or relinquish a throne
abject: cast down; degraded
abstract: conceived apart from concrete realities, specific objects, or actual instances
abstruse: hard to understand; secret, hidden

ABLE/IBLE: capable of, worthy of
changeable: able to be changed
combustible: capable of being burned; easily inflamed 
AC/ACR: sharp, bitter, sour
acerbic: sour or astringent in taste; harsh in temper
acid: something that is sharp, sour, or ill-natured
acrimonious: caustic, stinging, or bitter in nature
acumen: mental sharpness; quickness of wit
ACT/AG: to do, to drive, to force, to lead
agile: quick and well-coordinated in movement; active, lively
pedagogue: a teacher

AD: to, toward, near (often the d is dropped and the first letter to which a is prefixed is doubled.)
accede: to yield to demand; to enter office
addict: to give oneself over, as to a habit or pursuit
adjoin: to be close or in contact with
AL/ALI/ALTER: other, another
alias: an assumed name
allegory: figurative treatment of one subject under the guise of another
altruist: a person unselfishly concerned for the welfare of others
AM: love
amateur: a person who engages in an activity for pleasure rather than financial or professional gain
amity: friendship; peaceful harmony
amorous: inclined to love, esp. sexual love
AMBI/AMPHI: both, on both sides, around
ambidextrous: able to use both hands equally well
ambient: moving around freely; circulating
ambiguous: open to various interpretations
AMBL/ABUL: to go, to walk
ambulance: a vehicle equipped for carrying sick people (from a phrase meaning “walking hospital”)
ambulatory: of, pertaining to, or capable of walking
perambulator: one who makes a tour of inspection on foot
ANIM: of the life, mind, soul, breath
animosity: a feeling of ill will or enmity
equanimity: mental or emotional stability, especially under tension
magnanimous: generous in forgiving an insult or injury
annals: a record of events, esp. a yearly record
annual: of, for, or pertaining to a year; yearly
perennial: lasting for an indefinite amount of time
ANT/ANTE: before
antecedent: existing, being, or going before
antedate: precede in time
antediluvian: belonging to the period before the biblical flood; very old or old-fashioned
ANTRHO/ANDR: man, human
androgen: any substance that promotes masculine characteristics
androgynous: being both male and female
misanthrope: a person who hates humans or humanity
APO: away
apocalypse: revelation; discovery; disclosure
apogee: the highest or most distant point
apostasy: a total desertion of one’s religion, principles, party, cause, etc. 
ARCH/ARCHI/ARCHY: chief, principal, ruler
anarchy: a state or society without government or law
monarchy: a government in which the supreme power is lodged in a sovereign
oligarchy: a state or society ruled by a select group
ARD: to burn
ardent: burning; fierce; passionate
ardor: flame; passion
arson: the crime of setting property on fire
AUTO: self
autonomy: independence or freedom
autocrat: an absolute ruler


BE: about, to make, to surround, to affect (often used to transform words into transitive verbs)
belie: to misrepresent; to contradict
belittle: to make small; to make something appear smaller
bemoan: to lament; to moan for
BEL/BELL: beautiful
belle: a beautiful woman
embellish: to make beautiful; to ornament
BEN/BENE: good
benediction: act of uttering a blessing
benefit: anything advantageous to a person or thing
benign: having a kindly disposition 
BI/BIN: two
biennial: happening every two years
bilingual: able to speak one’s native language and another with equal facility
binocular: involving two eyes
BON/BOUN: good, generous
bona fide: in good faith; without fraud
bountiful: generous
BREV/BRID: short, small
abbreviate: to shorten
breviloquent: laconic; concise in one’s speech
brevity: shortness
BURS: purse, money
bursar: treasurer
bursary: treasury
disburse: to pay


CAD/CID: to fall, to happen by chance
cascade: a waterfall descending over a steep surface
coincidence: a striking occurrence of two or more events at one time, apparently by chance
recidivist: one who repeatedly relapses, as into crime
CAP/CIP/CEPT: to take, to get
capture: to take by force or stratagem
percipient: having perception; discerning; discriminating 
precept: a commandment or direction given as a rule of conduct
CAP/CAPIT/CIPIT: to head, headlong
capital: the city or town that is the official seat of government 
capitulate: to surrender unconditionally or on stipulated terms
precipice: a cliff with a vertical face
concord: agreement; peace, amity
concordance: agreement, concord, harmony
discord: lack of harmony between persons or things
CED/CEED/CESS: to go, to yield, to stop
accede: to yield to a demand; to enter office
cessation: a temporary or complete discontinuance
incessant: without stop
CELER: speed
accelerant: something used to speed up a process
celerity: speed; quickness
CERN/CERT/CRET/CRIM/CRIT: to separate, to judge, to distinguish, to decide
certitude: freedom from doubt
discrete: detached from others, separate
hypocrite: a person who pretends to have beliefs that she does not
CHROM: color
chromatic: having to do with color
chromosome: genetic material that can be studied by coloring it with dyes
CHRON: time
anachronism: something that is out-of-date or belonging to the wrong time
chronic: constant, habitual
chronometer: a highly accurate clock or watch
circuitous: roundabout, indirect
circumspect: cautious; watching all sides
CIS: to cut
exorcise: to seek to expel an evil spirit by ceremony
incisive: penetrating, cutting 
CLA/CLO/CLU: to shut, to close
claustrophobia: an abnormal fear of enclosed places
cloister: a courtyard bordered with covered walks, esp. in a religious institution
preclude: to prevent the  presence, existence, or occurrence of
CLAIM/CLAM: to shout, to cry out
clamor: a loud uproar
disclaim: to deny interest in or connection with
proclaim: to announce or declare in an official way
CLI: to lean toward
climax: the most intense point in the development of something
disinclination: aversion, distaste
Proclivity: inclination, bias
CO/COL/COM/CON: with, together
commensurate: suitable in measure, proportionate
conciliate: to placate, win over
connect: to bind or fasten together
contrary: opposed to; opposite
countermand: to retract an order
corps: a body (an organized group) of troops
corpulent: obese; having a lot of flesh
incorporation: combining into a single body
COSM: order, universe, world
cosmology: a theory of the universe as a whole 
cosmopolitan: worldly
microcosm: a small system that reflects a larger whole
COUR/CUR: running, a course
concur: to agree
cursory: going rapidly over something; hasty; superficial
incursion: a hostile entrance into a place, esp. suddenly 
accretion: an increase by natural growth
accrue: to be added a matter of periodic gain
excrescence: an outgrowth
CRED: to believe, to trust
credo: any formula of belief
credulity: willingness to believe or trust too readily
CULP: fault, blame
culpable: deserving blame or censure
inculpate: to charge with fault
mea culpa: through my fault; my fault


DAC/DOC: to teach
didactic: intended for instruction
indoctrinate: to imbue a person with learning
DE: away, off, down, completely, reversal
defame: to attack the good name or reputation of
deferential: respectful; to yield to judgment
defile: to make foul, dirty, or unclean
DEM: people
democracy: government by the people
endemic: peculiar to a particular person or locality
pandemic: general, universal
DI: day
diurnal: daily
quotidian: everyday; ordinary
DI/DIF/DIS: away from, apart, reversal, not
diffuse: to pour out and spread, as in a fluid
dilatory: inclined to delay or procrastinate
dissipate: to scatter wastefully
DIGN: worth
condign: well deserved; fitting; adequate
dignitary: a person who holds a high rank or office
disdain:  to look upon or treat with contempt
DOL: to suffer, to pain, to grieve
doleful: sorrowful, mournful 
dolorous: full of pain or sorrow, grievous
indolence: a state of being lazy or slothful
DUB: doubt
dubiety: doubtfulness
dubious: doubtful
indubitable: unquestionable 
DULC: sweet
dulcet: sweet; pleasing
dulcified: sweetened; softened
dulcimer: a musical instrument
DYS: faulty, abnormal
dysfunctional: poorly functioning
dyspepsia: impaired digestion
dystrophy: faulty or inadequate nutrition or development


E/EX: out, out of, from, former, completely
efface: to rub or wipe out; surpass, eclipse
extricate: to disentangle, release
EPI: upon
epidermis: the outer layer of the skin
epigram: a witty or pointed saying tersely expressed
epilogue: a concluding part added to a literary word
EQU: equal, even
equation: the act of making equal
iniquity: gross injustice; wickedness
ERR: to wander
errant: wandering or traveling, especially in search of adventure
erratic: deviating from the proper or usual course in conduct
ESCE: becoming
convalescent: recovering from illness
obsolescent: becoming obsolete
EU: good, well
euphemism: pleasant-sounding term for something unpleasant
euphony: pleasantness of sound


FAB/FAM: to speak
affable: friendly, courteous
defame: to attack the good name of 
ineffable: too great for description in words; that which much not be uttered
FATU: foolish
fatuity: foolishness; stupidity
fatuous: foolish; stupid
infatuated: swept up in a fit of passion impairing one’s reason
FI/FID: faith, trust
affidavit: a written statement on oath
fiduciary: of a trust; held or given in trust
infidel: disbeliever in the supposed true religion
FLU/FLUX: to flow
confluence: merging into one
effluence: flowing out of (light, electricity, etc.)
mellifluous: pleasing, musical
FULG: to shine
effulgent: shining forth 
refulgent: radiant; shining
FUS: to pour
diffuse: to spread widely or thinly
profuse: lavish, extravagant, copious
suffuse: to spread throughout or over from within


GEN: birth, creation, race, kind
congenital: existing or as such from birth 
progeny: offspring, descendants 
GNI/GNO: to know
ignoramus: a person lacking knowledge, uninformed
prognosis: to forecast, especially of disease
GRAT: pleasing
gratuity: money given for good service
ingratiate: to bring oneself into favor
GREG: flog
aggregate: a number of things considered a collective whole
egregious: remarkably bad; standing out from the crowd
gregarious: sociable; enjoying spending time with others


HAP: by chance
haphazard: at random
hapless: without luck
HER/HES: to stick
adherent: able to adhere; believer or advocate of a particular thing
coherent: logically consistent; having waves in phase and of one wavelength
inherent: involved in the constitution or essential character of something
HOL: whole
catholic: universal
holograph: a document written entirely by the person whose name it’s in
holistic: considering something as a unified whole
HYPER: over, excessive
hyperactive: excessively active
hyperbole: purposeful exaggeration for effect
HYPO: under, beneath, less than
hypochondriac: one affected by extreme depression of mind or spirits, often centered on imaginary physical ailments 
hypocritical: pretending to have beliefs one does not
hypodermic: relating to the parts beneath the skin


ICON: image, idol
iconic: being representative of a culture or movement
iconoclast: one who attacks established beliefs; one who tears down images
iconology: symbolism
IN/IM: in, into (often the m is dropped and the first letter to which i is prefixed is doubled)
incarnate: given a bodily, esp. a human, form
influx: the act of flowing in 
intrinsic: belonging to a thing by its very nature
IN/IM: not, without
indigent: poor, needy, lacking in what is needed
indolence: showing a disposition to avoid exertion; slothful
innocuous: not harmful or injurious


JECT: to throw, to throw down
abject: utterly hopeless, humiliating, or wretched
conjecture: formation of opinion on incomplete information
eject: to throw out, expel
JOC: joke
jocose: given to joking; playful
jocular: in a joking manner; funny
jocund: merry; cheerful
JUD: to judge
abjudicate: to act as a judge
judicious: having good judgment
JUR: law, to swear
abjure: to renounce an oath
adjure: to beg or command
perjury: willful lying under oath


LAUD: praise, honor
laudable: praiseworthy
laudatory: expressing praise
LAV/LAU/LU: to wash
ablution: act of cleansing
antediluvian: before the biblical flood; extremely old
deluge: a great flood of water
LEC/LEG/LEX: to read, to speak
legible: readable
lexicographer: a writer of dictionaries
lexicon: a dictionary
LECT/LEG: to select, to choose
eclectic: selecting ideas, etc. from various sources
predilection: preference, liking
LI/LIG: to tie, to bind
liable: legally responsible; bound by law
lien: the right to hold a property due to an outstanding debt
ligature: a connection between two letters; a bond
LIBER: free
liberality: generosity
libertine: one who follows one’s own path, without regard for morals or other restrictions
LITH: stone
acrolith: a statue with a stone head and limbs (but a wooden body)
lithography: a printing process that originally involved writing on a flat stone
lithology: the study of rocks and stones
megalith: a very big stone
LOC/LOG/LOQU: word, speech, though
colloquial: of ordinary or familiar conversation
elocution: art of clear and expressive speaking
grandiloquent: pompous or inflated in language
loquacious: talkative
LUD/LUS: to play
allude: to refer casually or indirectly
delude: to mislead the mind or judgment of, deceive
elude: to avoid capture or escape defection by


MACRO: great, long
macrobiotics: a system intended to prolong life
macrocephalous: having a large head
macrocosm: the universe; a large system that is reflected in at least one of its subsets 
MAG/MAJ/MAX: big, great
magnanimous: generous in forgiving an insult or injury
magnate: a powerful or influential person
maxim: an expression of general truth or principle 
MAL/MALE: bad, ill, evil, wrong
maladroit: clumsy; tactless
malapropism: humorous misuse of a word
malfeasance: a misconduct or wrongdoing often committed by a public official
malign: to speak harmful untruths about, to slander
MEGA: large, great
megapolis: a very large city
megaton: explosive power equal to 1000 tons of TNT
MICRO: very small
microbe: a very small organism
micron: a millionth of a meter
MIN: small
diminution: the act or process of diminishing
minutiae: small or trivial details
MIS: bad, wrong, to hate
misadventure: bad luck; an unlucky accident
misanthrope: one who hates people or humanity
mischance: bad luck; an unlucky accident
MIS/MIT: to send
emissary: a messenger or agent sent to represent the interests of another
remit: to send money
MOLL: soft
emollient: something that softens or soothes (e.g., a lotion)
mollify: sooth; soften; calm
MON/MONIT: to remind, to warn
admonish: to counsel against something; caution
premonition: forewarning, presentiment
remonstrate: to say or please in protest, object, or reproof
monarchy: rule by a single person
monograph: a scholarly study of a single subject
monomania: an obsession with a single subject
MOR/MORT: death
immortal: not subject to death
moribund: dying, decaying
MORPH: shape
amorphous: without definite form; lacking a specific shape
anthropomorphism: attribution of human characteristics to inanimate objects, animals, or natural phenomena 
MULT: many
multiplex: having many parts
multitudinous: very many; containing very many; having very many forms
MUT: to change
commute: to substitute; exchange; interchange
immutable: unchangeable, invariable


cognate: related by blood; having a common ancestor
nascent: starting to develop
NIHIL: nothing, none
annihilate: wipe out; reduce to nothing
nihilism: denial of all moral beliefs; denial that existence has any meaning
NOC/NOX: harm
innocuous: not harmful or injurious
noxious: injurious or harmful to health or morals
NOCT/NOX: night
noctambulant: walking at night; sleepwalking
nocturne: a dreamlike piece of music; a painting set at night
nomenclature: a system of names; systematic naming
nominal: existing in name only; negligible 
renown: fame; reputation
NON: not
nonentity: something that doesn’t exist; something that isn’t important
nonpareil: something with no equal
neologism: a newly coined word, phrase, or expression
neophyte: a beginner; a new convert; a new worker
neoplasm: a new growth in the body; a tumor


OB: toward, to, against, over
obfuscate: to render indistinct or dim; darken
obsequious: overly submissive
obstinate: stubbornly adhering to an idea, inflexible
obstreperous: noisily defiant, unruly
OMNI: all
omnibus: an anthology of the works of one author or of writings on related subjects
omnipotent: all powerful
omnipresent: everywhere at one time
ONER: burden
onerous: burdensome; difficult
onus: a burden; a responsibility


PAC/PEAC: peace
appease: to bring peace to
pacify: to ease the anger or agitation of
PALP: to feel
palpable: capable of being felt; tangible
palpate: to feel; to examine by feeling
palpitate: to beat quickly, as the heart; to throb 
PAN/PANT: all, everyone
panegyric: formal or elaborate praise at an assembly
panoply: a wide-ranging and impressive array or display

PAR: equal
disparage: to belittle, speak disrespectfully about
parity: equally, as in amount, status, or character
PARA: next to, beside
paragon: a model of excellence
parody: to imitate for purpose of satire
PAU/PO/POV/PU: few, little, poor
paucity: smallness of quantity; scarcity; scantiness
pauper: a person without any personal means of support
puerile: childish, immature
pusillanimous: lacking courage or resolution
PEC: money
impecunious: having no money; penniless
peculation: embezzlement
pecuniary: relating to money
PED/POD: foot
antipodes: places that are diametrically opposite each other on the globe
impede: to retard progress by means of obstacles or hindrances
PEL: to drive, to push
dispel: to drive away; to disperse
impel: to force; to drive forward
PER: completely
perforate: to make a way through or into something 
perfunctory: performed merely as routine duty
pertinacious: resolute, persistent
PET/PIT: to go, to seek, to strive
impetuous: characterized by sudden or rash action or emotion
petulant: showing sudden irritation, esp. over some annoyance
PHIL: love
bibliophile: one who loves or collects books
philatelist: one who loves or collets postage stamps
PHON: sound
euphony: the quality of sounding good
polyphony: the use of simultaneous melodic lines to produce harmonies in musical compositions
PLAC: to please
complacent: self-satisfied, unconcerned
complaisant: inclined or disposed to please
implacable: unable to be pleased
POLY: many
polyandry: the practice of having multiple husbands 
polyglot: someone who speaks many languages
POT: to drink
potable: drinkable; safe to drink; a drink
potation: drinking; a drink
PRI/PRIM: first
primal: original; most important
primeval: ancient; going back to the first age of the world
PROB: to prove, to test
approbation: praise, consideration
opprobrium: the disgrace incurred by shameful conduct
probity: honesty, high-mindedness
proximate: nearby; coming just before or just after
proximity: nearness; distance
protagonist: the main character in a play or story
prototype: the first version of an invention, on which later models are based
PUG: to fight
impugn: to challenge as false
pugilist: a fighter or boxer
pugnacious: to quarrel or fight repeatedly
PUNC/PUNG/POIGN: to point, to prick, to pierce
compunction: a feeling of uneasiness for doing wrong
expunge: to erase, eliminate completely
punctilious: strict or exact in the observance of formalities
PYR: fire
pyre: a bonfire, usually for burning a dead body
pyrosis: heartburn


quadrille: a square dance involving four couples
quart: one-fourth of a gallon
QUIE/QUIT: quiet, rest
acquiesce: to comply, give in 
quiescence: the condition of being at rest, still, inactive
quinquennial: a five-year period
quintuple: five times as many


deracinate: to uproot
radish: a root vegetable
RAMI: branch
ramiform: branchlike
RECT: straight, right
erect: upright; starting up straight
rectitude: moral uprightness; moral straightness
REG: king, rule
interregnum: a period between kings 
regent: one who serves on behalf of a king; one who rules
regicide: killing a king; one who kills a king
RETRO: backward
retroactive: extending to things that happened in the past
retrofit: to install newer parts into an older device or structure
RUB/RUD: red
rubella: German measles; a disease marked by red spots
rubicund: reddish; rosy-cheeked
RUD: crude
rude: uncivilized; impolite
rudimentary: undeveloped


sacrament: something regarded as possessing sacred character
sacrilege: the violation of anything sacred
sanctify: to make holy
SAG/SAP/SAV: taste, thinking, discerning
sagacious: perceptive; discerning; insightful
sage: wise
sapient: wise
savant: a learned person
SAL/SIL/SAULT/SULT: to leap, to jump
assault: a sudden or violent attack
exult: to show or feel triumphant joy
SALU: health
salubrious: healthful
salutary: healthful
SALV: to save
salvage: to save; something saved or recovered
salvation: being saved
savior: one who saves
SAN: healthy
sane: mentally healthy
sanitarium: a place of healing
SANG: blood
consanguinity: being related by blood
sanguinary: bloody; bloodthirsty
SAT: enough
dissatisfied: feeling that one does not have enough
sate: to fill
saturate: to fill completely; to entirely satisfy
SCI: to know
conscience: the inner sense of what is right or wrong, impelling one toward right action
omniscient: knowing everything
prescient: having knowledge of things before they happen
SE: apart, away
secede: to withdraw formally from an association
sedition: incitement of discontent or rebellion against a government
SEC/SEQU/SUE/SUI: to follow
non sequitur: an inference or a conclusion that does not follow from the premises
obsequious: fawning
SED/SESS/SID: to sit, to settle
assiduous: diligent, persistent, hardworking (literally, “sitting down” to business)
insidious: intended to entrap or beguile; lying in wait to entrap
SEMI: half
semicircle: half a circle
semiconscious: only partly conscious; half awake
SEN: old
senate: the highest legislative body (from “council of elders”)
senescent: getting old
senile: relating to old age; experiencing memory loss or other age-related mental impairments
SENS/SENT: to feel, to be aware
dissent: to differ in opinion, esp. from the majority
insensate: without feeling or sensitivity
presentiment: a feeling that something is about to happen
SOL: alone
desolate: deserted; laid waste; left alone
isolate: to set apart from others
soliloquize: talk to oneself; talk onstage as if to oneself
solipsism: the belief that the only thing that really exists, or can really be known, is oneself
SOL: to loosen, to free
absolution: forgiveness for wrongdoing
dissolute: indifferent to moral restraints
SOL: sun
parasol: an umbrella that protects from the sun
solarium: a sunroom; a room with windows for taking in the sun
SOMN: sleep
somnambulist: a sleepwalker
somniferous: sleep-inducing
somniloquist: one who talks while asleep
somnolent: sleep-inducing; sleepy; drowsy
SOPH: wisdom
philosopher: one who studies logic, beauty, truth, etc.; one who seeks wisdom
sophisticated: complex; worldly; experienced
insurgent: rising up in revolution; rushing in
insurrection: rising up in armed rebellion
surge: to rise up forcefully, as ocean waves
SPEC/SPIC: to look, to see
circumspect: watchful and discreet, cautious
conspicuous: easily seen or noticed; readily observable
specious: deceptively attractive
SUA: sweet, pleasing, to urge
assuage: to make less severe, ease, relieve
suave: smoothly agreeable or polite; sweet
SUB/SUP: below, under
subliminal: existing or operating below the threshold of consciousness
subsidiary: serving to assist or supplement
suppose: to put down as a hypothesis; to use as the underlying basis of an argument; to assume
SUMM: highest, total
consummate: highly qualified; complete; perfect
summit: highest point
SUPER/SUR: over, above
supercilious: arrogant, haughty, condescending
superfluous: extra, more than necessary
SYM/SYN: together
symbiosis: living together in a mutually beneficial relationship
symposium: a meeting at which ideas are discussed


TAC/TIC: to be silent
reticent: disposed to be silent or not to speak freely
tacit: unspoken understanding
taciturn: uncommunicative
TEND/TENS/TENT/TENU: to stretch, to thin
attenuate: to weaken or reduce in force
extenuating: making less serious by offering excuses
THEO: god
apotheosis: glorification, glorified ideal
theocracy: a form of government in which a deity is recognized as the supreme ruler
THERM: heat
thermal: relating to heat; retaining heat
thermonuclear: relating to a nuclear reaction that takes place at high temperatures
TOR/TORQ/TORT: to twist
contort: to twist; to distort
distort: to pull out of shape, often by twisting; to twist or misrepresent facts 
extort: to wring money, property, or services out of somebody using threats or force
TORP: stiff, numb
torpid: numbed; sluggish
torpor: numbness; listlessness; apathy
TOX: poison
antitoxin: an antibody that counteracts a given poison
toxic: poisonous
TRANS: across, beyond
intransigent: refusing to agree or compromise
transcendent: going beyond ordinary limits
transgress: to violate a law, command, or moral code


ULT: last, beyond
penultimate: second-to-last 
ulterior: beyond what is immediately present; future; beyond what is stated; hidden
ultimate: last; final
UMBR: shadow
adumbrate: to foreshadow; to sketch; to overshadow
penumbra: a shaded area between pure shadow and pure light
umbrage: shade; shadow; displeasure; resentment
UN: not
unseen: not seen
unusual: not usual; exceptional; strange
UND: wave
abound: to be plentiful; to overflow (from water flowing in waves)
inundate: to flood
undulate: to move in a wavelike way
UNI/UN: one
unanimous: of one mind; incomplete accord
uniform: of one kind; consistent
US/UT: to use
abuse: to use wrongly or improperly
usurp: to seize and hold
utilitarian: efficient, functional, useful


VAIL/VAL: strength, use, worth
ambivalent: being caught between contradictory feelings of equal power or worth
avail: to have force; to be useful; to be of value
convalescent: recovering strength; healing
VEN/VENT: to come or to move toward
adventitious: accidental contravene: to come into conflict with
convene: to assemble for some public purpose
VER: truth
aver: to affirm, to declare to be true
veracious: habitually truthful
verisimilitude: the appearance or semblance of truth
VERB: word
proverb: an adage; a byword; a short, commonly known saying
verbatim: exactly as stated; word-for-word
verbiage: excessive use of words; diction
VERD: green
verdant: green with vegetation; inexperienced
verdure: fresh, rich vegetation
VI: life
convivial: sociable
viable: capable of living
vivacity: the quality of being lively, animated, spirited
VIL: base, mean
revile: to criticize with harsh language
vile: loathsome, unpleasant
vilify: to slander, to defame
VIRU: poison
virulent: acrimonious; very bitter; very poisonous
viruliferous: containing a virus
VOC/VOK: call, word
advocate: to support or urge by argument
convoke: to call together
vocabulary: the stock of words used by or known to a particular person or group
vociferous: crying out noisily
VOL: wish
benevolent: characterized by or expressing goodwill
malevolent: characterized by or expressing bad will
volition: free choice, free will; act of choosing
VOLU/VOLV: to roll, to turn
convolution: a twisting or folding
voluble: easily turning; fluent; changeable
VOR: to eat
carnivorous: meat-eating
omnivorous: eating or absorbing everything
voracious: having a great appetite