Definition of provoking in English:



  • 1Causing annoyance; irritating.

    ‘there is evidence of provoking conduct and loss of self-control’
    • ‘It was a strange, provoking, deliberately self-contradictory tale, which instantly sparked heated commentary.’
    • ‘This was a most provoking part of the conference and stimulated a lengthy debate afterwards.’
    • ‘That'd be a list not of the most linked to (the most popular, we call it), but the most provoking sites.’
    • ‘Although this is provoking for us, some assistance is better than none.’
    • ‘Ekta Manchandan draws attention to beauty imagery clichés in a provoking series of photographs that show women applying make up in front of mirrors.’
    • ‘They have created an astonishing and provoking array of teapots in various media that often look nothing like a teapot in the traditional sense of the word.’
    • ‘It was like Lizzy to be so provoking to the poor young man.’
    • ‘It's very provoking to me, however.’
    • ‘But according to Iraqi exiles, the jubilation in Baghdad was low key, perhaps to avoid provoking reprisals.’
    • ‘Was it meant to be a provoking statement?’
    • ‘James has some very provoking thoughts on the matter, so I'd recommend reading the whole thing.’
    • ‘There is much to learn in life Phil, don't be so quick to push aside the comments of others just because the words are provoking.’
    • ‘The spokesman said that the advent of the colorful and provoking advertisements has increased the number of bus travelers considerably.’
    • ‘Clutching it tightly and pressing it against her chest, the lady exhaled as she attempted to rid herself of these provoking thoughts.’
    • ‘The Baptist Quarterly Review, for example, declared that employers had been "arrogant and provoking" and condemned their use of private military forces to smash strikes.’
    • ‘Of the 48 foods incriminated, artificial colourings and preservatives were the most common provoking substances.’
    • ‘I know nothing about Discordians or Discordian theory, so I am intrigued as to what it was that you found so provoking?’
    • ‘Indeed, 7 Stories has all the makings of an absurdist comedy, but beneath its veil of irreverence lurks a vehicle for lofty, provoking ideas.’
    • ‘It is a provoking visual image.’
    • ‘"We've been covering the news for so long, our reporters know better than to have said anything that might have been incendiary or provoking," the source said.’
  • 2in combination Giving rise to the specified reaction or emotion.

    • ‘And it is not meant to be entertaining; it is meant to be thought provoking.’
    • ‘The sessions, attended by current and past officers, were thought provoking and productive.’
    • ‘The column is thought provoking.’
    • ‘I hope that we all find it thought provoking or at least entertaining.’
    • ‘However, the Trouts have skillfully created a spectacle as beautiful as it is thought provoking.’
    • ‘After explaining the context, we pose a series of questions regarding common factors that are intended to be thought provoking.’
    • ‘It is never easy in Parliament when we have to deal with these serious and thought provoking, conscience provoking, issues.’
    • ‘The challenges he faces in writing a new-age bestseller are thought provoking.’
    • ‘I thought it was really thought provoking.’
    • ‘It's long, but it's thought provoking in many ways.’
    • ‘Your article was quite thought provoking.’
    • ‘The double life I have led as an academic and service worker has been thought provoking.’
    • ‘But I found the Guardian Leader articles on Tuesday and today extremely thought provoking and useful.’
    • ‘This book is short, easy to understand and thought provoking but rather unadventurous, drawing its raw material only from the established architectural canon.’
    • ‘All are thought provoking.’
    • ‘His articles are wonderfully crafted and thought provoking.’
    • ‘I found this chapter well organized and thought provoking.’
    • ‘His keynote address was thought provoking.’
    • ‘He does so in a way that is accessible to the average reader but that is still thought provoking and interesting.’
    • ‘Its examination of the concept of non-violent action is thought provoking.’