instigate

[ in-sti-geyt ]
/ ˈɪn stɪˌgeɪt /

verb (used with object), in·sti·gat·ed, in·sti·gat·ing.

to cause by incitement; foment: to instigate a quarrel.
to urge, provoke, or incite to some action or course: to instigate the people to revolt.

Origin of instigate

1535–45; < Latin instīgātus past participle of instīgāre to goad on, impel, equivalent to in- in-2 + -stīg- goad, prick (akin to stigma, stick2) + -ātus -ate1

Related forms

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for instigate

British Dictionary definitions for instigate

instigate

/ (ˈɪnstɪˌɡeɪt) /

verb (tr)

to bring about, as by incitement or urgingto instigate rebellion
to urge on to some drastic or inadvisable action

Derived Forms

instigatingly, adverbinstigation, nouninstigative, adjectiveinstigator, noun

Word Origin for instigate

C16: from Latin instīgāre to stimulate, incite; compare Greek stizein to prick
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012