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Take the World’s Hardest Vocabulary Test

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Over the last few years, Words for Nerds has been a regular feature in my blogs. To qualify as a Word for Nerds, it must meet three criteria —

1. The word must be in current usage, not an archaic term.
2. The word must be usable in general conversation, not a narrow, technical term.
3. The word must be very uncommon, but not totally obscure. (This is the tricky one. The perfect Word for Nerds is one which you kind of recognize, but don’t quite exactly know the meaning of.)

Many of the words on the Words for Nerds list are ones I had to look up when reading.
They’re tough; over my head, anyway, for the most part. So here’s the complete list to-date. How many of these 57 head-scratchers do you know? Give it a try, and at the end, check out the Word Sell Challenge.

The World’s Hardest Vocabulary Test

  1. Schadenfreude
  2. Defenestration
  3. Adumbrate
  4. Encomium
  5. Blandish
  6. Turpitude
  7. Fribble
  8. Solipsism
  9. Captious
  10. Protean
  1. Tenebrous
  2. Otiose
  3. Puissant
  4. Hegemony
  5. Tertiary
  6. Bathos
  7. Antediluvian
  8. Fugacious
  9. Sinecure
  10. Defalcate
  1. Heuristic
  2. Quotidian
  3. Avuncular
  4. Somnolent
  5. Juggernaut
  6. Recondite
  7. Peripatetic
  8. Parsimonious
  9. Bricolage
  10. Punctilio
  1. Numinous
  2. Grampus
  3. Transmogrify
  4. Pismire
  5. Nictitate
  6. Crenel
  7. Gravamen
  8. Insuperable
  9. Fungible
  10. Putative
  1. Palaver
  2. Panoply
  3. Aplomb
  4. Haruspice
  5. Moribund
  6. Foozle
  7. Nostrum
  8. Moil
  9. Flagitious
  10. Draconian
  1. Soporific
  2. Aril
  3. Flivver
  4. Jejune
  5. Frowzy
  6. Canard
  7. Qua

WHEW! That had to be tough. My hat’s off to anybody who knew more than ten. If you knew 20 or more, well, you have one of the best vocabularies IN THE WORLD!