Synonym Chooser

How does the verb incite contrast with its synonyms?

Some common synonyms of incite are abet, foment, and instigate. While all these words mean "to spur to action," incite stresses a stirring up and urging on, and may or may not imply initiating.

inciting a riot

When could abet be used to replace incite?

In some situations, the words abet and incite are roughly equivalent. However, abet implies both assisting and encouraging.

aiding and abetting the enemy

When would foment be a good substitute for incite?

The meanings of foment and incite largely overlap; however, foment implies persistence in goading.

fomenting rebellion

Where would instigate be a reasonable alternative to incite?

While in some cases nearly identical to incite, instigate definitely implies responsibility for initiating another's action and often connotes underhandedness or evil intention.

instigated a conspiracy

Thesaurus Entries Near incite

Cite this Entry

“Incite.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Oct. 2023.

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