provoke

pro|voke [prəˈvəuk US -ˈvouk] v [T]
[Date: 1300-1400; : French; Origin: provoquer, from Latin provocare, from vocare 'to call']
1.) to cause a reaction or feeling, especially a sudden one
provoke a protest/an outcry/criticism etc
The proposal provoked widespread criticism.
The decision to invade provoked storms of protest.
provoke debate/discussion
The novel has provoked fierce debate in the US.
provoke sb into (doing) sth
She hopes her editorial will provoke readers into thinking seriously about the issue.
provoke sb to do sth
Emma, though still at school, was provoked to help too.
2.) to make someone angry, especially deliberately
The dog would not have attacked if it hadn't been provoked.
provoke sb into (doing) sth
Paul tried to provoke Fletch into a fight.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Provoke — Pro*voke , v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Provoked}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Provoking}.] [F. provoquer, L. provocare to call forth; pro forth + vocare to call, fr. vox, vocis, voice, cry, call. See {Voice}.] To call forth; to call into being or action; esp., to… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • provoke — 1 Provoke, excite, stimulate, pique, quicken, galvanize can all mean to rouse one into doing or feeling something or to call something into existence by so rousing a person. Provoke stresses a power in the agent or agency sufficient to produce… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • provoke — pro·voke /prə vōk/ vt pro·voked, pro·vok·ing 1: to incite to anger 2: to provide the needed stimulus for pro·vok·er n Merriam Webster’s Dictionary of Law. Merriam Webster. 1996 …   Law dictionary

  • provoke — [prə vōk′, prōvōk′] vt. provoked, provoking [ME provoken < MFr provoquer < L provocare, to call forth < pro , PRO 2 + vocare, to call < vox, VOICE] 1. to excite to some action or feeling 2. to anger, irritate, or annoy 3 …   English World dictionary

  • provoke — [v1] make angry abet, abrade, affront, aggravate, anger, annoy, bother, bug*, chafe, enrage, exasperate, exercise, foment, fret, gall*, get*, get on one’s nerves*, get under one’s skin*, grate, hit where one lives*, incense, incite, inflame,… …   New thesaurus

  • Provoke — Pro*voke , v. i. 1. To cause provocation or anger. [1913 Webster] 2. To appeal. Note: [A Latinism] [Obs.] Dryden. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • provoke — early 15c., from O.Fr. provoker (14c., Fr. provoquer), from L. provocare call forth, challenge, from pro forth (see PRO (Cf. pro )) + vocare to call (see VOICE (Cf. voice)) …   Etymology dictionary

  • provoke — ► VERB 1) stimulate or cause (a strong or unwelcome reaction or emotion) in someone. 2) deliberately annoy or anger. 3) incite to do or feel something, especially by arousing anger. ORIGIN Latin provocare to challenge …   English terms dictionary

  • provoke */*/ — UK [prəˈvəʊk] / US [prəˈvoʊk] verb [transitive] Word forms provoke : present tense I/you/we/they provoke he/she/it provokes present participle provoking past tense provoked past participle provoked 1) to deliberately try to make someone angry He… …   English dictionary

  • provoke — transitive verb (provoked; provoking) Etymology: Middle English, from Anglo French *provoker, provocher, from Latin provocare, from pro forth + vocare to call, from voc , vox voice more at pro , voice Date: 14th century 1. a. archaic to arouse to …   New Collegiate Dictionary

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