View synonyms for vexed


[ vekst ]


  1. irritated; annoyed:

    The shop's customers were often vexed at the slow sales clerks.

  2. much discussed or disputed; difficult to resolve or understand; contentious:

    The mining rights for that area are a vexed issue.

  3. afflicted by torment or trouble (often used in combination):

    Citizens showed increasing frustration with the corruption-vexed government.

  4. tossed about, as by waves or other physical forces:

    The loud, perpetual roar of the vexed waters filled the valley.


/ ˈvɛksɪdlɪ; vɛkst /


  1. annoyed, confused, or agitated
  2. much debated and discussed (esp in the phrase a vexed question )

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Derived Forms

  • vexedly, adverb
  • ˈvexedness, noun

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Other Words From

  • vex·ed·ly [vek, -sid-lee], adverb
  • vex·ed·ness noun
  • half-vexed adjective
  • un·vexed adjective

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Word History and Origins

Origin of vexed1

First recorded in 1400–50; late Middle English; vex, -ed 2

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Example Sentences

That question — the deepest and most vexed issue posed by the theory — is still the subject of arguments a century old.

So in the spirit of embracing and exploring our current state of deeply vexed uncertainty, the Vox Book Club is going to spend November reading Susan Choi’s wicked and vexing Trust Exercise.

From Vox

I sometimes feel vexed by—but also addicted to—a sense of conflict, or a sense of being at odds with myself, or my choices.

When European politics became more vexed, so did Eurovision.

A turbulent period in which national identity was always vexed by the slavery question up through 1861.

For weeks since our pilgrimage, the furious debate over the Ground Zero mosque has vexed me.

So, feeling a little vexed by the GW incident, I took the purity test.

Its record is largely that of battles and sieges, of the brave adventure of discovery and the vexed slaughter of the nations.

He felt vexed with himself for his lapse from good manners, yet hardly able to account for it.

She felt vexed with her mother, vexed with her husband, vexed on all sides; and she took refuge in her fatigue and was silent.

I was vexed that the woman of the party wore a dress evidently of French fashion: it spoiled the unity of the groupe.

She stamped her foot prettily, imperiously, vexed at my refusal to go out of that weird place the way I had entered.


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