agent provocateur

noun agent pro·vo·ca·teur \ ˈä-ˌzhäⁿ-prō-ˌvä-kə-ˈtər , ˈā-jənt- \
Updated on: 15 Nov 2017

Definition of agent provocateur

plural agents provocateurs play \ˈä-ˌzhäⁿ-prō-ˌvä-kə-ˈtər, ˈā-jən(t)s-prō-\
: one employed to associate with suspected persons and by pretending sympathy with their aims to incite them to some incriminating action

Examples of agent provocateur in a Sentence

  1. The government used agents provocateurs to try to undermine the opposition party.

Origin and Etymology of agent provocateur

borrowed from French, literally, "provoking agent"


AGENT PROVOCATEUR Defined for English Language Learners

agent provocateur

noun

Definition of agent provocateur for English Language Learners

  • : a person employed to encourage people to break the law so that they can be arrested


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