agitate
Pronunciation
  • (RP, America) IPA: /ˈæ.dʒɪ.teɪt/
Verb

agitate (agitates, present participle agitating; past and past participle agitated)

  1. (transitive) To stir up; to disturb or excite; to perturb. [from 16th c.]
    He was greatly agitated by the news.
    • The mind of man is agitated by various passions.
  2. (transitive) To cause to move with a violent, irregular action; to shake. [from 16th c.]
    • 1830, Edward Bulwer-Lytton, Paul Clifford
      It was a dark and stormy night; the rain fell in torrents — except at occasional intervals, when it was checked by a violent gust of wind which swept up the streets (for it is in London that our scene lies), rattling along the housetops, and fiercely agitating the scanty flame of the lamps that struggled against the darkness.
    the wind agitates the sea
    to agitate water in a vessel
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To set in motion; to actuate. [16th–18th c.]
  4. (transitive, now, rare) To discuss or debate. [from 16th c.]
    • 1790, Mary Wollstonecraft, A Vindication of the Rights of Men:
      Your speech at the time a bill for the regency was agitated now lies before me.
  5. (transitive, now, rare) To revolve in the mind, or view in all its aspects; to consider, to devise. [from 17th c.]
    politicians agitate desperate designs
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