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Chris Lele

SAT Vocab Friday – It’s Not What You Think!

Many SAT words are totally misleading. You think they mean one thing, but then they mean something completely different. Go figure! The thing is the SAT loves these words because it knows that students (at least most) are going to make a wrong guess concerning the meaning of a word. But not you—at least for these five words.



Nope, don’t worry—nothing is getting blown up. Bombastic is all about trying to sound fancy so you can impress others. Like, if you start trying to drop SAT words in class when your teacher asks you a question that you don’t know. You may fool some of your classmates, but your teacher knows that you are trying to be bombastic.



This word has nothing to do with Columbus and the ancient Romans. Well, actually it does have something to do with the ancient Romans in that it came from Latin histrionicus, which means actor. To be histrionic is to be overly emotion and melodramatic, you know, like a drama-queen.

Even though she always got straight A’s, Millie would always engage histrionics at the end of each calculus test, banging her head against her desk and saying how she had totally failed.



Nope, this word is not about that one guy Greg—assuming you know somebody named Greg. Or maybe it is about that Greg, if he happens to be always hanging out with others. Somebody who is gregarious is sociable. You’ll never see them hanging out alone after school.



I know each country has one and they flutter all over the place when it is really windy. But I’m talking about a different flag, the verb (and no it doesn’t mean to wave a flag). To flag is to become tired.

Whenever Harry flagged during his road trips, he’d stop at a gas station, pick up some Red Bull, and then hit the road, the rock station playing full volume (please do not copy Harry).


About Chris Lele

Chris Lele is the GRE and SAT Curriculum Manager (and vocabulary wizard) at Magoosh Online Test Prep. In his time at Magoosh, he has inspired countless students across the globe, turning what is otherwise a daunting experience into an opportunity for learning, growth, and fun. Some of his students have even gone on to get near perfect scores. Chris is also very popular on the internet. His GRE channel on YouTube has over 8 million views.

You can read Chris's awesome blog posts on the Magoosh GRE blog and High School blog!

You can follow him on Twitter and Facebook!

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