stimulate

verb

stim·​u·​late ˈstim-yə-ˌlāt How to pronounce stimulate (audio)
stimulated; stimulating

transitive verb

1
: to excite to activity or growth or to greater activity : animate, arouse
2
a
: to function as a physiological stimulus to
b
: to arouse or affect by a stimulant (such as a drug)

intransitive verb

: to act as a stimulant or stimulus
stimulation noun
stimulative adjective
stimulator noun
stimulatory adjective
Choose the Right Synonym for stimulate

provoke, excite, stimulate, pique, quicken mean to arouse as if by pricking.

provoke directs attention to the response called forth.

my stories usually provoke laughter

excite implies a stirring up or moving profoundly.

news that excited anger and frustration

stimulate suggests a rousing out of lethargy, quiescence, or indifference.

stimulating conversation

pique suggests stimulating by mild irritation or challenge.

that remark piqued my interest

quicken implies beneficially stimulating and making active or lively.

the high salary quickened her desire to have the job

Examples of stimulate in a Sentence

A raise in employee wages might stimulate production. The economy was not stimulated by the tax cuts. a hormone that stimulates the growth of muscle tissue Their discussion stimulated him to research the subject more. He was stimulated by their discussion.
Recent Examples on the Web Over-fertilizing can stimulate leafy growth at the expense of flowering and pod formation. Rita Pelczar, Better Homes & Gardens, 15 July 2024 Mars’ alignment with Uranus stimulates a sudden change of heart. USA TODAY, 15 July 2024 The social networking is really helpful to engage in stimulating conversations. Madeline Holcombe, CNN, 12 July 2024 The museum's mission is to stimulate interest in, advance knowledge of, and foster appreciation for the natural environment, with a particular emphasis on the unique natural history of Long Island's South Fork. Jordan Greene, Peoplemag, 12 July 2024 See all Example Sentences for stimulate 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'stimulate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

Etymology

Latin stimulatus, past participle of stimulare, from stimulus goad; perhaps akin to Latin stilus stem, stylus — more at style

First Known Use

1566, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of stimulate was in 1566

Dictionary Entries Near stimulate

Cite this Entry

“Stimulate.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/stimulate. Accessed 23 Jul. 2024.

Kids Definition

stimulate

verb
stim·​u·​late ˈstim-yə-ˌlāt How to pronounce stimulate (audio)
stimulated; stimulating
1
: to make active or more active : animate, arouse
stimulate industry
2
: to act on as a bodily stimulus or stimulant

Medical Definition

stimulate

transitive verb
stim·​u·​late -ˌlāt How to pronounce stimulate (audio)
stimulated; stimulating
1
: to excite to activity or growth or to greater activity
2
a
: to function as a physiological stimulus to (as a nerve or muscle)
b
: to arouse or affect by a stimulant (as a drug)
stimulative adjective
stimulatory adjective

More from Merriam-Webster on stimulate

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