ag·​i·​ta·​tor | \ ˈa-jə-ˌtā-tər How to pronounce agitator (audio) \

Definition of agitator

: one that agitates: such as
a : one who stirs up public feeling on controversial issues political agitators
b : a device or an apparatus for stirring or shaking

Keep scrolling for more

Examples of agitator in a Sentence

The police arrested several anti-government agitators. a political agitator who led an unsuccessful revolt against the government
Recent Examples on the Web Keep the agitator post in for regular loads or remove it to wash bulky loads. Carolyn Forte, Good Housekeeping, 17 Aug. 2021 Plotkin, who died in 2019, was a radio commentator and home rule agitator. Washington Post, 3 July 2021 And this speaks to Pollan’s emerging role in the drug war not as an activist or agitator but a kind of culture warrior. John Semley, The New Republic, 26 July 2021 Jackson has proven to be more of a partisan agitator, as evidenced by his letter to Biden co-signed by 13 GOP colleagues. Todd J. Gillman, Dallas News, 18 June 2021 Recently, though, America appears to be auditioning a new candidate for prime agitator of profitable controversy: Elon Musk. Spencer Kornhaber, The Atlantic, 9 May 2021 This environmental agitator takes unwanted food from supermarkets, farmers markets, social events, and even rubbish bins and transforms it into wholesome meals for those in need in Lebanon, including victims of the recent Beirut port blast. Karla Alindahao, Forbes, 20 Apr. 2021 Finding the right vacuum cleaner for tile floors can be a challenge since many models have agitator or beater brushes that are too aggressive on tile. Michael Pollick,, 26 Mar. 2021 Greene's comments were a rare expression of regret by the conservative agitator, a freshman whose career has included the embrace of violent and offensive conspiracy theories and angry confrontations with progressive colleagues. Alan Fram, USA TODAY, 15 June 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'agitator.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of agitator

1663, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for agitator

agitate + -or entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More About agitator

Time Traveler for agitator

Time Traveler

The first known use of agitator was in 1663

See more words from the same year

Dictionary Entries Near agitator



agitator feed

See More Nearby Entries 

Statistics for agitator

Last Updated

8 Sep 2021

Cite this Entry

“Agitator.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 20 Sep. 2021.

Style: MLA
MLACheck Mark Icon ChicagoCheck Mark Icon APACheck Mark Icon Merriam-WebsterCheck Mark Icon

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for agitator



English Language Learners Definition of agitator

: a person who tries to get people angry or upset so that they will support an effort to change a government, company, etc.
: a device for stirring or shaking something in a machine (such as a washing machine)

More from Merriam-Webster on agitator

Nglish: Translation of agitator for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of agitator for Arabic Speakers


Test Your Vocabulary

Difficult Spelling Words Quiz

  • alphabet pasta spelling help
  • Which is the correct spelling?
How Strong Is Your Vocabulary?

Test your vocabulary with our 10-question quiz!

 AlphaBear 2

Spell words. Make bears.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!