[ prov-uh-key-shuh n ]
/ ˌprɒv əˈkeɪ ʃən /


the act of provoking.
something that incites, instigates, angers, or irritates.
Criminal Law. words or conduct leading to killing in hot passion and without deliberation.

Origin of provocation

1375–1425; late Middle English < Latin prōvocātiōn- (stem of prōvocātiō) a calling forth, equivalent to prōvocāt(us) (past participle of prōvocāre to provoke; see -ate1) + -iōn- -ion
Related formsprov·o·ca·tion·al, adjectivenon·prov·o·ca·tion, nouno·ver·prov·o·ca·tion, nounpre·prov·o·ca·tion, noun Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for provocation

British Dictionary definitions for provocation


/ (ˌprɒvəˈkeɪʃən) /


the act of provoking or inciting
something that causes indignation, anger, etc
English criminal law words or conduct that incite a person to attack another
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

Word Origin and History for provocation



c.1400, from Old French provocacion (12c.) and directly from Latin provocationem (nominative provocatio) "a calling forth, a summoning, a challenge," noun of action from past participle stem of provocare "to call out" (see provoke).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper