Definitions for: Irritate


[v] excite to an abnormal condition, of chafe or inflame; "Aspirin irritates my stomach"
[v] physiology and biology: excite to some characteristic action or condition, as motion, contraction, or nervous impulse, by the application of a stimulus; "irritate the glands of a leaf"
[v] cause annoyance in; disturb, esp. by minor irritations; "Mosquitoes buzzing in my ear really bothers me"; "It irritates me that she never closes the door after she leaves"



Webster (1913) Definition: Ir"ri*tate, v. t. [See 1 st Irritant.]
To render null and void. [R.] --Abp. Bramhall.


Ir"ri*tate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. Irritated; p. pr. &
vb. n. Irritating.] [L. irritatus, p. p. of irritare. Of
doubtful origin.]
1. To increase the action or violence of; to heighten
excitement in; to intensify; to stimulate.

Cold maketh the spirits vigorous and irritateth
them. --Bacon.

2. To excite anger or displeasure in; to provoke; to tease;
to exasperate; to annoy; to vex; as, the insolence of a
tyrant irritates his subjects.

Dismiss the man, nor irritate the god: Prevent the
rage of him who reigns above. --Pope.

3. (Physiol.) To produce irritation in; to stimulate; to
cause to contract. See Irritation, n., 2.

4. (Med.) To make morbidly excitable, or oversensitive; to
fret; as, the skin is irritated by friction; to irritate a
wound by a coarse bandage.

Syn: To fret; inflame; excite; provoke; tease; vex;
exasperate; anger; incense; enrage.

Usage: To Irritate, Provoke, Exasperate. These words
express different stages of excited or angry feeling.
Irritate denotes an excitement of quick and slightly
angry feeling which is only momentary; as, irritated
by a hasty remark. To provoke implies the awakening of
some open expression of decided anger; as, a provoking
insult. Exasperate denotes a provoking of anger at
something unendurable. Whatever comes across our
feelings irritates; whatever excites anger provokes;
whatever raises anger to a high point exasperates.
``Susceptible and nervous people are most easily
irritated; proud people are quickly provoked; hot and
fiery people are soonest exasperated.'' --Crabb.


Ir"ri*tate, a.
Excited; heightened. [Obs.]

Synonyms: annoy, bother, chafe, devil, get at, get to, gravel, nark, nettle, rag, rile, vex

Antonyms: soothe

See Also: aggravate, antagonise, antagonize, beset, chafe, chevvy, chevy, chivvy, chivy, displease, eat into, exacerbate, exasperate, excite, fret, fret, gall, get, grate, harass, harry, hassle, itch, molest, peeve, pinch, plague, provoke, rankle, rub, ruffle, scratch, stimulate, vellicate, worsen

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