provocative

[ pruh-vok-uh-tiv ]
/ prəˈvɒk ə tɪv /

adjective

tending or serving to provoke; inciting, stimulating, irritating, or vexing.

noun

something provocative.

Origin of provocative

First recorded in 1375–1425; late Middle English word from Late Latin word prōvocātīvus. See provocation, -ive
Related forms
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for provocative

British Dictionary definitions for provocative

provocative

/ (prəˈvɒkətɪv) /

adjective

acting as a stimulus or incitement, esp to anger or sexual desire; provokinga provocative look; a provocative remark
Derived Formsprovocatively, adverbprovocativeness, noun
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 provocative

provocative


adj.

mid-15c., "eliciting," from Middle French provocatif (15c.) and directly from Late Latin provocativus "calling forth," from provocat-, past participle stem of Latin provocare (see provoke). Specifically of sexual desire from 1620s. Related: Provocatively; provocativeness. The earliest appearance of the word in English is as a noun meaning "an aphrodisiac" (early 15c.).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper