Simple Definition of provoke
: to cause the occurrence of (a feeling or action) : to make (something) happen
: to cause (a person or animal) to become angry, violent, etc.
Full Definition of provoke
Examples of provoke in a sentence
His remarks provoked both tears and laughter.
He just says those things because he's trying to provoke you.
The animal will not attack unless it is provoked.
Synonym Discussion of provoke
synonyms see in addition irritate
PROVOKE Defined for Kids
Definition of provoke for Students
1 : to cause to become angry <Don't provoke your sister.>
2 : to bring about <The joke provoked a smile.>
Word Root of provoke
The Latin word vox, meaning “voice,” and the related word vocāre, meaning “to call”, give us the root voc or vok. Words from the Latin vox or vocāre have something to do with the voice or with calling. Anything vocal is produced by the voice. A vocation is the work that someone is called to do as a job. To evoke is to call forth. To invoke is to call on for aid or protection. To provoke is to call forth another's anger. The word voice also has vox as its root.
Medical Definition of provoke
: to induce (a physical reaction) <ipecac provokes vomiting>
Legal Definition of provoke
1 : to incite to anger
2 : to provide the needed stimulus for
Seen and Heard
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