\ə-ˈrau̇z \
aroused; arousing

Definition of arouse 

transitive verb

1 : to awaken from sleep was aroused from a deep sleep by a loud noise

2 : to stimulate to action or to bodily readiness for activity : excite a book that has aroused debate

3 : to excite (someone) sexually : to cause sexual arousal in (someone) … girls whose perfume scent frightened him and aroused him.— Elizabeth Berg

intransitive verb

: to awake from sleep : stir

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Other Words from arouse

arousal \ə-ˈrau̇-zəl \ noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for arouse


awake, awaken, rouse, wake, waken



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Examples of arouse in a Sentence

The report aroused a great deal of public interest. The husky sound of her voice could always arouse him. Their proposal is certain to arouse the opposition.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Bottlenecks at Tesla's battery factory and assembly plant have undermined that effort, limiting the return on that investment and arousing concern that the company may need to raise more cash. Bloomberg,, "Tesla recalls early Model S cars to retrofit power-steering part," 29 Mar. 2018 The final result was a textured pixie that got gradually shorter in the public eye, without arousing suspicion. Chloe Metzger, Marie Claire, "Princess Diana Only Cut Her Hair 1/4 Inch at a Time so Fans Wouldn’t Notice," 15 June 2018 It has been found, for instance, that blue-green-yellow type colors tend to be particularly arousing. Joe Peterburger, National Geographic, "Why the Brain-Body Connection Is More Important Than We Think," 17 Mar. 2018 Even strawberry ice cream would arouse no latent anarchistic tendencies, while vanilla or peach would be soothing to the very reddest of the Reds. Linda Rodriguez Mcrobbie,, "How ice cream made America," 30 June 2018 More often than not African-Americans were the silent partners in statewide southern politics, expected to confine their ambitions to majority-minority jurisdictions where their presence would not arouse a racial backlash. Ed Kilgore, Daily Intelligencer, "Stacey Abrams and the New Democratic Coalition in the South," 23 May 2018 In tennis, few things arouse the crowd more than confrontations, especially those involving players, umpires and line judges. Cindy Shmerler, New York Times, "Tennis Moves Toward Taking the Human Element Out of Line Calls," 1 Mar. 2018 Knocks on the window did not arouse him, the state police said. Martin Weil, Washington Post, "Man suffers apparent drug overdose while on road at wheel of car," 4 Feb. 2018 Kate Mulholland, from the Crown Prosecution Service, says when suspicions were aroused, Gamoota disappeared, but authorities tracked him down. Fox News, "Judge sentences Grenfell fraudster to 18 months in prison," 1 June 2018

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

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First Known Use of arouse

circa 1616, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for arouse

a- (as in arise) + rouse

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Statistics for arouse

Last Updated

11 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for arouse

The first known use of arouse was circa 1616

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English Language Learners Definition of arouse

: to cause (an emotional or mental state)

: to excite (someone) sexually

: to wake (someone) from sleep


\ə-ˈrau̇z \
aroused; arousing

Kids Definition of arouse

1 : to awaken from sleep

2 : to cause to feel arouse anger

3 : to cause to become active or upset arouse the opposition

\ə-ˈrau̇z \
aroused; arousing

Medical Definition of arouse 

1a : to awake from sleep

b : to rouse or stimulate to action

c : to excite (someone) sexually : to cause sexual arousal in (someone)

2 : to give rise to a response aroused by a stimulus

Other Words from arouse

arousable \ə-ˈrau̇-zə-bəl \ adjective
arousability \ə-ˌrau̇-zə-ˈbi-lə-tē \ noun plural -ties

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More from Merriam-Webster on arouse

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for arouse

Spanish Central: Translation of arouse

Nglish: Translation of arouse for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of arouse for Arabic Speakers

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