- serving to provoke; causing annoyance.
Origin of provoking
- to anger, enrage, exasperate, or vex.
- to stir up, arouse, or call forth (feelings, desires, or activity): The mishap provoked a hearty laugh.
- to incite or stimulate (a person, animal, etc.) to action.
- to give rise to, induce, or bring about: What could have provoked such an incident?
- Obsolete. to summon.
Origin of provoke
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for provoking
The outrage that Walker is provoking is of a less exciting variety this time around.Cheese Head Guv's Sleazy Past
August 28, 2014
The government wanted to avoid "making the public uneasy or provoking North Korea," according to the paper.Japan Prepares to Shoot North Korean Missiles Out of the Sky
Angela Erika Kubo, Jake Adelstein
April 10, 2014
Another shovels strings of rubber bands into his mouth like spaghetti, provoking more caterwauling from the judges.The Most Depressing Show on Earth: Amongst the Clowns of Newark
March 16, 2014
But the British were to blame for provoking the Jews and Arabs to fight each other, the two tour guides agree, laughing.Jaffa: A Tale Of Two Lands
Lauren Gelfond Feldinger
February 16, 2014
Indeed, if this was self-destructive, then provoking another stand-off—during an election year, no less—would be suicidal.Finally! The Republican Fever Is Broken
October 16, 2013
But again, in a provoking manner, he reminded me of the prohibition.Clarissa, Volume 1 (of 9)
Oh, this has been the gladdest, most provoking day of my life, for I had only a moment with him.The Bacillus of Beauty
I was provoked, and I married in hopes of provoking the man I loved.Tales And Novels, Volume 3 (of 10)
I am detained in town by provoking, tiresome, but necessary business.Tales And Novels, Volume 8 (of 10)
The clerk looked at it with provoking composure, and then compared it with some papers.A Woman Intervenes
- to anger or infuriate
- to cause to act or behave in a certain manner; incite or stimulate
- to promote (certain feelings, esp anger, indignation, etc) in a person
- obsolete to summon
Word Origin and History for provoking
1520s, "that incites or instigates," present participle adjective from provoke. Meaning "irritating, frustrating" is attested from 1640s. Related: Provokingly.