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Provoke   /prəvˈoʊk/   Listen
Provoke

verb
(past & past part. provoked; pres. part. provoking)
1.
Call forth (emotions, feelings, and responses).  Synonyms: arouse, elicit, enkindle, evoke, fire, kindle, raise.  "Raise a smile" , "Evoke sympathy"
2.
Evoke or provoke to appear or occur.  Synonyms: call forth, evoke, kick up.
3.
Provide the needed stimulus for.  Synonym: stimulate.
4.
Annoy continually or chronically.  Synonyms: beset, chevvy, chevy, chivvy, chivy, harass, harry, hassle, molest, plague.  "This man harasses his female co-workers"



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"Provoke" Quotes from Famous Books



... on Frank's making some peculiarly insulting remark in a low tone, his pent-up ire boiled forth, and, in the madness of his fury, he seized on his cousin with a strength that passion rendered irresistible. "You've tried to provoke me to this all the evening—you will have it, you dastardly coward! you WILL ...
— Louis' School Days - A Story for Boys • E. J. May

... till by their own praise they spoil the effect of the praise that others give them. For some tickle and puff themselves up by self-praise, while others, malignantly holding out the small bait of eulogy, provoke others to talk about themselves, while others again ask questions and put inquiries, as was done to the soldier in Menander, merely to ...
— Plutarch's Morals • Plutarch

... fear, well and good. If not, Isaacson would stand a scene, provoke a scandal, even defy Nigel for his own sake. Would ...
— Bella Donna - A Novel • Robert Hichens

... And then she will purr, And thus show her thanks For my kindness to her; I'll not pinch her ears, Nor tread on her paw, Lest I should provoke her To use her sharp claw; I never will vex her, Nor make her displeased, For Pussy can't bear To ...
— Pinafore Palace • Various

... upon the inhabitants thereof, even all the curses that are written in the book which they have read before the king of Judah. Because they have forsaken me, and have burned incense unto other gods, that they might provoke me to anger with all the works of their bands; therefore is my wrath poured out upon this place and it shall not ...
— Stories of the Prophets - (Before the Exile) • Isaac Landman

... inexpressibly relieved, though, if he had really investigated the reports which may have come to his ear, the reality could have been nothing to what his suspicions might have conceived. But, though my spirits rose high at my unexpected escape, I had not courage myself to provoke the discussion, and remained silent to ...
— Guy Mannering, or The Astrologer, Complete, Illustrated • Sir Walter Scott

... you mean, Dr Crofts? What is it you are saying? Why do you talk that nonsense, trying to see if you can provoke me?" ...
— The Small House at Allington • Anthony Trollope

... that he was, the Taiko[u] Hideyoshi must have realised the difficulties confronting his House. The formidable power he had created in the North was no small part of them. On several occasions he sought a quarrel with Iyeyasu; sought to humiliate him in small ways, to lower his prestige and provoke an outbreak. Such was the trifling incident of the lavish donation required of Iyeyasu to the Hachiman shrine at Kamakura. But Hideyoshi, as with Elizabeth of England, looked rather to the balance of cost against result, always with ...
— Bakemono Yashiki (The Haunted House) - Tales of the Tokugawa, Volume 2 (of 2) • James S. De Benneville

... our joys provoke, The fiend of nature join'd his yoke, 15 And rush'd in wrath to make our isle his prey; Thy form, from out thy sweet abode, O'ertook him on his blasted road, And stopp'd his wheels, and look'd his rage away. I see recoil his sable steeds, 20 That bore him swift to salvage deeds, Thy tender ...
— The Poetical Works of William Collins - With a Memoir • William Collins

... head in his goblet. "When you wish to disarm a serpent, it is best to provoke him into striking at once, and so draw the poison ...
— The Thrall of Leif the Lucky • Ottilie A. Liljencrantz

... has never alluded to Byron at all. Shelley's lampoon—a singular instance of the random blows of a noble spirit, striking at what, if better understood, it would eagerly have revered— Wordsworth seems never to have read. Nor did the violent attacks of the Edinburgh and the Quarterly Reviews provoke him to any rejoinder. To "English Bards and Scotch Reviewers"—leagued against him as their common prey—he opposed a dignified silence; and the only moral injury which he derived from their assaults lay in that sense of the absence of trustworthy ...
— Wordsworth • F. W. H. Myers

... to fate's approaching hour, Intrigues, or fights for wealth or power, And slumb'ring dangers dare provoke: And he who tott'ring scarce sustains A century's age, plans future gains, And feels ...
— Translations of German Poetry in American Magazines 1741-1810 • Edward Ziegler Davis

... for further investigations on the psychic side. Charcot had affirmed the power, not only of physical traumatism, but even of psychic lesions—of moral shocks—to provoke its manifestations, but his sole contribution to the psychology of this psychic malady,—and this was borrowed from the Nancy school,—lay in the one word "suggestibility"; the nature and mechanism of this psychic process he ...
— Studies in the Psychology of Sex, Volume 1 (of 6) • Havelock Ellis

... some success. He was profoundly conscious that any connection with the Joliffes would be derogatory to his dignity; he feared that the discrepancy between their relative positions was sufficiently marked to attract attention, if not to provoke hostile criticism. People would certainly say that an architect was marrying strangely below him, in choosing a landlady's niece. If he were to do such a thing, he would no doubt be throwing himself away socially. His father, who was dead, had been a Wesleyan pastor; and his mother, who ...
— The Nebuly Coat • John Meade Falkner

... fraternal law Which shares the common bale and bliss, No sadder lot could Folly draw, Or Sin provoke from ...
— The Complete Works of Whittier - The Standard Library Edition with a linked Index • John Greenleaf Whittier

... it,' she pleaded. In truth, the apology troubled her deeply where the offence had left no pain. She wished it had never been spoken The thought of it had power to provoke tears long after. ...
— In the Roaring Fifties • Edward Dyson

... mine or he would have died. Leaving him safe in his den, I pushed on toward my own claim, in the teeth of a terrific gale, the cold growing each moment more intense. "The sunset regions" at that moment did not provoke me ...
— A Son of the Middle Border • Hamlin Garland

... soft, white hands and fair complexion, and no match for him, whereupon the young Frenchman drew his sword to give him a taste of his quality. He flourished it around his opponent's head, occasionally stratching his face and hands, until he was covered with wounds and blood, but he could not provoke him to draw his weapon and defend himself. After complimenting him with the name of "coward," he told him to go about his business, advising him in future to be more careful of his conduct and less boastful ...
— The Bay State Monthly, Volume I. No. VI. June, 1884 - A Massachusetts Magazine • Various

... and take a party division. So far as the ordinary business of the session was concerned, the Ministry might get on well enough, for there must have been a considerable amount of routine work which would not provoke the Opposition to a trial of strength; but if chance or hostile strategy should bring about at any moment a controversy which called for a strictly party division, then the Government must go down. Nothing can ...
— A History of the Four Georges and of William IV, Volume IV (of 4) • Justin McCarthy and Justin Huntly McCarthy

... further astonishment his rich Irish voice could be heard upraised in picturesque malediction. What was Rigden doing to them inside the tank to provoke such profanity from them both? The rest of us scrambled to find ...
— Life in a Tank • Richard Haigh

... thoughts. He is aware of God's displeasure against the sons of Levi and Israel for marrying strange wives, and this has caused him to look about warily and with good circumspection "into the grounds and principall agitations which should thus provoke me to be in love with one, whose education hath bin rude, her manners barbarous, her generation accursed, and so discrepant in all nurtriture from myselfe, that oftentimes with feare and trembling, I have ended my private ...
— Baddeck and That Sort of Thing • Charles Dudley Warner

... instructions. An ox knoweth its lord, an ass its master's duty, But Israel will not know me, nor my conditions. Oh, froward people, given all to superstitions, Unnatural children, expert in blasphemies, Provoke me into hate, by their idolatries. Take heed to my words, ye tyrants of Sodoma, In vain ye offer your sacrifice to me. Discontent I am with you beasts of Gomorrah And have no pleasure when I your offerings see. I abhor your fasts ...
— Everyman and Other Old Religious Plays, with an Introduction • Anonymous

... humor, or rendered impressive by the striking way in which they express thought, e.g. "The foolish and the dead alone never change their opinion." A pun, digression, or out-of-the-way allusion may occasionally provoke readers, but onlookers have frequently noticed that few wrinkle their brows while reading his critical essays, and that a pleased expression, such as photographers like, is almost certain to appear. He has the rare faculty of making his ...
— History of American Literature • Reuben Post Halleck

... into my hands it lacked but an hour of sunset. The beach was alive with angry rollers, while the Termagant was still under easy sail, hovering up and down the coast before my factory, evidently meditating the propriety of another pill to provoke my notice. ...
— Captain Canot - or, Twenty Years of an African Slaver • Brantz Mayer

... it is anything but complimentary to the lady it mentions," I remarked. "He must have had, or imagined he had, some desperate grievance, to provoke him to the use of such plain language in regard to one he can still ...
— The Leavenworth Case • Anna Katharine Green

... gift, this trusting of the secret To him, were both—to state my frank opinion— Steps that you took too lightly; he can lead you To any length, with these for hostages; And since he holds you at such disadvantage, You'd be still more imprudent, to provoke him; So you must ...
— Tartuffe • Jean-Baptiste Poquelin Moliere

... the excitable temperament with which he was endowed. In the intervals of his study his nervous system, under the stimulus of games or controversial dispute, would become so tense with excitement as to provoke remark. Nor may we in the retrospect fail to discover in this quality of mind and temper the premonitions of that malady which finally prevailed over the lucid understanding, and rational activities ...
— James Otis The Pre-Revolutionist • John Clark Ridpath

... Clive, hanging his head down, "I know I shouldn't have done it. But Barnes Newcome would provoke the patience of Job; and I couldn't bear to have ...
— The Newcomes • William Makepeace Thackeray

... be saved. I will give you a scripture or two, I mean to show you that Christ, by commanding that his mercy should in the first place be offered to the biggest of sinners, has a design thereby to encourage and provoke others to come ...
— The Jerusalem Sinner Saved • John Bunyan

... recent lamentable experiences—an item which I am constrained to believe the author thereof regarded as being of a humorous character, but in which no right-minded person could possibly see aught to provoke mirth—I have abandoned my original resolution and shall now lay ...
— Fibble, D. D. • Irvin Shrewsbury Cobb

... He earnestly wished to avoid a duel, but McCarty continued to provoke him, with the hope of compelling him to fight. This he finally decided to do. He left his home without revealing his intentions and on reaching Washington made his final preparations with great deliberation. "The Chief of Selma" fell February ...
— History and Comprehensive Description of Loudoun County, Virginia • James W. Head

... his Uncle, "I would jes' as soon that yo' didn' have anythin' to do with it near hyeh. I don' want to see any little differences between families, such as census-takin' is likely to provoke." ...
— The Boy With the U.S. Census • Francis Rolt-Wheeler

... it was useless to say this to de Loubersac, blinded by love as he was; but his aim—a rather Machiavellian one—was to sow seeds of suspicion in the heart of this lover, which would drive him to provoke an explanation, and force Wilhelmine to speak out, for she must surely know the facts relating to ...
— A Nest of Spies • Pierre Souvestre

... condemnatory instance to the hardened consciences of His hearers. Probably the very purpose of the book was to show Israel that the despised and yet dreaded heathen were more susceptible to the voice of God than they were: 'I will provoke you to jealousy by them which are no people.' The story was a smiting blow to the proud exclusiveness and self-complacent contempt of prophetic warnings, which marked the entire history of God's people. As Ezekiel was told: 'Thou are not sent ... to many peoples of a strange speech ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture - Ezekiel, Daniel, and the Minor Prophets. St Matthew Chapters I to VIII • Alexander Maclaren

... fete among the students, always being placed in the seat of honor at the head of the table, and joining in all the fun of those merry reunions. For a time she treated all alike as comrades, and accepted no compliments save those so extravagant as to provoke general laughter. Gradually, however, it came to be understood among the students that Minette made an exception in the case of Arnold Dampierre, and that on occasions when they happened to break up in pairs he was ...
— A Girl of the Commune • George Alfred Henty

... they cannot fail to penetrate and soften even the heart which is habitually insensible to the ever-watchful providence of Almighty God. In the midst of a civil war of unequalled magnitude and severity which has sometimes seemed to invite and provoke the aggressions of foreign states; peace has been preserved with all nations, order has been maintained, the laws have been respected and obeyed, and harmony has prevailed everywhere except in the theatre ...
— The Papers And Writings Of Abraham Lincoln, Complete - Constitutional Edition • Abraham Lincoln

... that he had neglected the usual offering only increased the feeling of envy and annoyance which filled the unsuccessful hunter's heart. The Evil Spirit at that moment entering his body, his temper fairly flew away, and he sought some pretence to provoke a ...
— The Old Santa Fe Trail - The Story of a Great Highway • Henry Inman

... reply, and expressed himself as willing to abide by the consequences. It was "fighting language between fighting men"—a quarrel which Hamilton had been seeking for five years and which he had done everything in his power to provoke—and Burr promptly sent a challenge. Hamilton as promptly accepted it, named pistols at ten paces as the weapons, and at seven o'clock on the morning of July 11, 1804, the two men faced each other on the heights of Weehawken, overlooking New York bay. Both fired ...
— American Men of Action • Burton E. Stevenson

... prosing more and more, I might dive much deeper, and disclose other thoughts, propose questions the reader might be puzzled to answer, and deduce arguments that might startle his prejudices, or, perhaps, provoke his ridicule, because he could not comprehend them; but ...
— Agnes Grey • Anne Bronte

... cultivate their minds. To be able to discuss such things was a part of their education. They were expected to describe all they saw, fluently and pleasantly, but without criticism enough to require thought and provoke argument, which is apt to be tedious; and thus was formed the habit of chatting in the genial light frothy way which does duty for conversation in society. Geraldine had not exaggerated when she called Miss Blackburne's ...
— The Beth Book - Being a Study of the Life of Elizabeth Caldwell Maclure, a Woman of Genius • Sarah Grand

... words, oppressed our breast with dismay and dread. Ardently he would have us believe that at this juncture he was thinking of us only—of us wondering, alone, ignorant of danger, and hidden blindly under the earth. His purpose was to provoke the two Luga-renos to shoot, so that we should be warned by the reports. Besides, an opportunity for escape might yet present itself in some most unlikely way, perhaps at the very last moment. Had ...
— Romance • Joseph Conrad and F.M. Hueffer

... bewildering and contradictory theories to be met with in books, pamphlets, and reviews concerning St. Patrick's native country are calculated to provoke a spirit of weary incredulity and impatience. However, when presenting this book to the public, we may quote the late Canon O'Hanlon's plea for adventurous writers who still endeavour to solve the problem: "The question of St. ...
— Bolougne-Sur-Mer - St. Patrick's Native Town • Reverend William Canon Fleming

... provoke a fight, all that was necessary when the unappreciated portion of his name was flung at him and was not sufficient to awaken his ire, was to throw out our chests, hold back our shoulders, curve our arms and say in a throaty voice, "Who's going ...
— South American Fights and Fighters - And Other Tales of Adventure • Cyrus Townsend Brady

... neighbors, it was incumbent on them to persevere in those of their ancestors. The voice of oracles, the precepts of philosophers, and the authority of the laws, unanimously enforced this national obligation. By their lofty claim of superior sanctity the Jews might provoke the Polytheists to consider them as an odious and impure race. By disdaining the intercourse of other nations, they might deserve their contempt. The laws of Moses might be for the most part frivolous or absurd; yet, since they had been received during many ages by a large society, ...
— The History of The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire - Volume 2 • Edward Gibbon

... advocate, in a great hurry to get married, to the disgust of his rivals, the leading his bride to the altar to the clang of bells and the sound of music, so timed as to provoke the qualms of diarrhoea. In the evening, after the ball, comes he into the nuptial chamber, where should be reposing his lovely bride. No longer is she a lovely bride—but a fury—a wild she-devil, who, seated in an armchair, refuses ...
— Droll Stories, Volume 1 • Honore de Balzac

... not only office, but I fear even one's life, it would be difficult to preserve. That's why these lists are called office-philacteries. This Hsueeh family, just a while back spoken of, how could your worship presume to provoke? This case in question affords no difficulties whatever in the way of a settlement; but the prefects, who have held office before you, have all, by doing violence to the feelings and good name of these people, come ...
— Hung Lou Meng, Book I • Cao Xueqin

... father. I wish this horrid noise wouldn't go on in my head. Don't worry me, Nurse. I know it was my fault. I wouldn't listen to the warning, and I would provoke her, but don't scold me now until I ...
— Polly - A New-Fashioned Girl • L. T. Meade

... certainly very much in this to provoke Mrs Crawley. It was not only that she knew well that her cousin would give ample and immediate attention, and lend himself thoroughly to the matter without any idea of payment,—but that she could not quite believe that ...
— The Last Chronicle of Barset • Anthony Trollope

... Bessie?" asked Dolly suddenly, as they reached the house. She was plainly concerned and surprised, and Eleanor, rather startled, since she had seen nothing in Bessie to provoke such a question, ...
— The Camp Fire Girls on the March - Bessie King's Test of Friendship • Jane L. Stewart

... commenced a short but extraordinary conflict. Bearing up his horse as he swam, with the bridle in his teeth, the bold rider threw his left hand upon the stern of the vessel, and brandishing his cudgel in the right, seemed to provoke both parties to the combat. Desborough, who had risen from the stern at his approach, stood upright in the centre, his companion still paddling at the bows; and between these two a singular contest now ensued. Armed with the formidable knife which he had about his person, the settler made the ...
— The Canadian Brothers - or The Prophecy Fulfilled • John Richardson

... character-drawing in one of Mr. Henry James's novels, The Portrait of a Lady, where Gilbert Osmond, a selfish dilettante, finding that he cannot make a great success or attain a great position, devotes himself to trying to mystify and provoke the curiosity of the world by retiring into a refined seclusion, and professing that it affords him an exquisite kind of enjoyment. The hideous vulgarity of his attitude is not at first sight apparent; he deceives the heroine, who is a considerable heiress, into thinking that here, at last, ...
— At Large • Arthur Christopher Benson

... a situation that might provoke alarm. He was voluntarily placing himself in the power of men whom his class had driven from the upper air into these drear abodes. To them he could only be known as a persecutor. Yet such was the impression which he had formed of their gentleness and meekness that he had no fear of harm. ...
— The Martyr of the Catacombs - A Tale of Ancient Rome • Anonymous

... guide upon the ground to recover his breath, and point out what was next to be done. Nectabanus was both frightened and angry; but he had felt himself as completely in the power of the robust knight as an owl in the claws of an eagle, and therefore cared not to provoke him to any further display of ...
— The Talisman • Sir Walter Scott

... whom she naturally looked for protection, combined to divide her attention and bewilder her inexperienced mind. The partiality of her royal admirer had begun to excite observation, to awaken curiosity, and to provoke the malignant passions which, under an affected concern for decorum, assumed the guise of virtue. The daily prints teemed with hints of the favour of Mrs. Robinson with "one whose manners were resistless, and whose smile was victory." These circumstances, added to the constant ...
— Beaux and Belles of England • Mary Robinson

... prepared with unclarified honey. Cow-heels and Calves' feet are sometimes mixed with unsugared leches and Jellies. Furmity with venison, mortrewes, jussell, &c., are good. Other out-of-the-way soups set aside. Such isa flesh feast in the English way. Sauces. Sauces provoke a fine appetite. Have ready Mustard for brawn, &c., Verjuice for veal, &c., Chawdon for cygnet and swan, Garlic, &c., for beef and goose, Ginger for fawn, &c., Mustard and sugar for pheasant, &c., Gamelyn for heronsew, &c., Sugar and Salt for brew, &c., Gamelyn for bustard, &c., Salt ...
— Early English Meals and Manners • Various

... audience teaches all Christian missionaries and controversialists a needed and neglected lesson. We should accentuate points of resemblance rather than of difference, to begin with. We should not run a tilt against even errors, and so provoke to their defence, but rather find in creeds and practices an ignorant groping after, and so a door of entrance for, the truth which we seek ...
— Expositions of Holy Scripture: The Acts • Alexander Maclaren

... the old men sat long, in brooding over what should be done. They feared the gods, but were afraid, also, to provoke their ruler to wrath. They finally decided that the maiden's life should be spared, but that for a whole day, from sunrise to sunset, she should stand in the market-place, with a crown of sharp thorns pressed down hard upon her head. The crowd should be allowed to ...
— Dutch Fairy Tales for Young Folks • William Elliot Griffis

... preceptors. How could he risk such a grave imprudence? And yet there was no time to lose in reproaches. Nero begged for advice: Seneca and Burrhus were silent, but they, also frightened, asked of themselves what Agrippina would do. Would she not provoke a colossal scandal, which would ruin everything? An expedient, the same one, occurred to both of them: but so sinister was the idea that they dared not speak it. This time, however, both the philosopher and the general were deceived as well as Nero: ...
— Characters and events of Roman History • Guglielmo Ferrero

... which have happened or will happen in the world will always be found to be in proportion to the number and weight of the causes, whether REAL or PRETENDED, which PROVOKE or INVITE them. If this remark be just, it becomes useful to inquire whether so many JUST causes of war are likely to be given by UNITED AMERICA as by DISUNITED America; for if it should turn out that United America will probably give the fewest, then it will follow that in ...
— The Federalist Papers • Alexander Hamilton, John Jay, and James Madison

... moralist or an historian; he paints them with a zest for pruriency worthy of Bayle or Brantome. It was an occasion for a wise scepticism to register grave doubts as to the infamous stories of Procopius. A rehabilitation of Theodora is not a theme calculated to provoke enthusiasm, and is impossible besides from the entire want of adequate evidence. But a thoughtful writer would not have lost his time, if he referred to the subject at all, in pointing out the moral improbability ...
— Gibbon • James Cotter Morison

... care, through him I've grown. And less my God to honour than I ought: Through him my every thought On a frail beauty blindly have I thrown; In this my counsellor he stood alone, Still prompt with cruel aid so to provoke My young desire, that I Hoped respite from his harsh and heavy yoke. But, ah! what boots—though changing time sweep by, If from this changeless passion nought can save— A genius proud and high? Or what Heaven's other envied gifts to have, If ...
— The Sonnets, Triumphs, and Other Poems of Petrarch • Petrarch

... Stamford, if he were to get up after me, would say: 'Well, if all this be true—if we have done all these injurious things, if we have created all this irritation in the United States—will it not be likely that this irritation will provoke a desire for vengeance, and that the chances of war are greatly increased by it?' I do not know whether the chances of war are increased, but I will say that not only is war not certain, but it is to the ...
— Speeches on Questions of Public Policy, Volume 1 • John Bright

... for God's sake have a little sense and stand by your word; this crowd has had all it can endure, and if you do any more to provoke it, the consequences will be on you. And while you're about it, see that the saloons are closed and kept closed until this trouble is settled. And keep your people out of the way—don't let them go about showing ...
— King Coal - A Novel • Upton Sinclair

... Hannah, and it is said she "provoked her sore, to make her fret" (1 Sam. 1: 6). There are some people who delight in twitting others about some fault or physical defect, or because of lack of ability or something of that sort. If they see that this causes us to fret, it only increases their desire to provoke us. Then again, some people like to make sport of others, and tease them; and if they see that some one can not hear it well, if it frets him and worries him, this only increases their delight. I have heard such people say, "I just like to tease So-and-so; he can not stand it at ...
— Heart Talks • Charles Wesley Naylor

... long ends of his huge mustache, and indulging in a variety of ridiculous gestures indicative of exaggerated rage and fury, which are irresistibly funny—all the more so because there is nothing whatever to provoke this display of ferocity. Finally he stops in front of the footlights, strikes an attitude, and delivers himself thus: "For to-day, Scapin, I am willing to let my man-killer here have a little rest, so that there may be an opportunity to get all its ...
— Captain Fracasse • Theophile Gautier

... authority, which still preserved some pretensions to independence, and the arbitrary will of the conqueror, resolved to govern the world, Rome included. We at last reach the moment when the excess of arrogance was about to provoke the effect of contrary wills. We shall now see the Pope captive, the Spanish people in insurrection, the climate and deserts of Russia leagued together against the tyrannical master of Europe. England had never accepted the yoke; and she had everywhere ...
— Worlds Best Histories - France Vol 7 • M. Guizot and Madame Guizot De Witt

... necessary to live in the presence of the continually repeated threat: "If the law passes, if the measure is adopted, if the election takes place, if you do not do all I want, if you do not yield to all my caprices, I leave you, I constitute myself an independent State, I provoke the formation of a rival Confederacy." The worst causes are the readiest to threaten in this style; having nothing reasonable to say in their own favor, they willingly proceed to violence, and the saying ...
— The Uprising of a Great People • Count Agenor de Gasparin

... applied in any manner more useful to the country, and when this is done and our naval force sufficiently strengthened and our militia armed we need not fear that any nation will wantonly insult us or needlessly provoke hostilities. We shall more certainly preserve peace when it is well understood that ...
— A Compilation of the Messages and Papers of the Presidents - Section 1 (of 2) of Volume 3: Andrew Jackson (Second Term) • James D. Richardson

... dear Rosencrantz and Guildenstern! Moreover that we much did long to see you, The need we have to use you did provoke Our hasty sending. Something have you heard Of Hamlet's transformation; so I call it, Since nor the exterior nor the inward man Resembles that it was. What it should be, More than his father's death, that thus hath put him So much from the understanding of himself, I cannot dream of: I entreat ...
— Hamlet, Prince of Denmark • William Shakespeare [Collins edition]

... of a politician, Miss Weems," said Arthur, "although I take our country's differences much at heart. I shall surely not provoke discussion with you, like our friend Harold, upon an unpleasant subject, while you give me carte blanche to enjoy your conversation upon themes more congenial to ...
— Fort Lafayette or, Love and Secession • Benjamin Wood

... the knights have degenerated. Two of them are quarreling over a captured Greek girl, and so forth. La Valette, the grandmaster, institutes stern measures of reform to restore the ancient morale of the order, and these provoke intrigue and opposition. The defenders of Fort St. Elmo ask to be relieved, on the ground that the place cannot be held. La Valette decides that St. Elmo must be defended to the last: it is a case where a few must be ...
— The Life and Works of Friedrich Schiller • Calvin Thomas

... arrived from foreign countries containing promises of men and money, the discontented in the provinces had leagued together in order to provoke a fresh rebellion. By means of these letters and other documents which were scattered abroad, hopes were raised that M. de Miremont, the last Protestant prince of the house of Bourbon, would bring them reinforcements ...
— Massacres Of The South (1551-1815) - Celebrated Crimes • Alexandre Dumas, Pere

... your personal dislikes, Rupert, to provoke you to speak of a fellow-scholar in that way—and a young lady, too," corrected the ...
— Cressy • Bret Harte

... quarters where resentment may have been cherished because of his activity in the Long Island Traction field. This is one of the Street's 'clover patches' and the success which the newcomer seemed to be meeting did not provoke great pleasure." ...
— Twelve Men • Theodore Dreiser

... how the grace that gilds an honored name, Gives a strange zest to that loquacious dame Whose ready tongue and easy blundering wit Provoke fresh uproar at each happy hit! Note how her humour into strange grimace Tempts the smooth meekness ...
— As I Remember - Recollections of American Society during the Nineteenth Century • Marian Gouverneur

... the Filipino, "when you know more, you'll feel like making a noise. Let me assure you that no friend will hear if you do call. But any great amount of noise on your part might provoke me, and that would not be wise ...
— Uncle Sam's Boys in the Philippines - or, Following the Flag against the Moros • H. Irving Hancock

... regarding his political views and position. He still believed in the Republic which would come to stay after the inevitable overthrow of the Napoleonic rule. He and his friends did not intend to provoke a revolution, but they held themselves in readiness for the moment when it should come, as it necessarily must, and fully resolved this time not to give it up again to the plunder of base conspirators. In principle he agreed with the logical conclusions of socialism; ...
— My Life, Volume II • Richard Wagner

... able to avoid an occasional outbreak of splenetic patriotism. The greatness and the generosity of France are the hobby-horse on which they ride with such a fanfare of trumpets as to provoke the ridicule of the passer-by. Madame de Bourboulon, as a woman, may be excused her little bit of sarcasm, though she must have known and ought to have remembered what has been done and endured by English missionaries in the name and for the sake ...
— Celebrated Women Travellers of the Nineteenth Century • W. H. Davenport Adams

... with whom?" interrupted the statesman. "Russia we can watch and hold. We are rather nearer to its western frontier than Delhi is, and we could throttle its Baltic trade at five hours' notice. France and Holland are not inclined to provoke our hostility; they would have everything to lose by ...
— When William Came • Saki

... to raise a silly laugh, provoke others by gross affronts, and cause serious danger ...
— The Fables of Phdrus - Literally translated into English prose with notes • Phaedrus

... into hot argument (their usual method of conversation), leaving the young people to themselves, and, Ben with intent to provoke the grave little wife to laughter, told a funny story which ...
— Money Magic - A Novel • Hamlin Garland

... to these supposed agents, with whom in the sunshine of his prosperity he was but little occupied, that in the bosom of his calamity he addressed his prayers; he thanked them, however, for their favours, fearing lest their ingratitude might farther provoke their fury: thus when assailed by disaster, when afflicted with disease, he invoked them with fervor: he required them to change in his favor the mode of acting which was the very essence of beings; ...
— The System of Nature, Vol. 2 • Baron D'Holbach

... regarded as close and sincere friends had trodden upon all the past and attacked him abominably, as though he were the veriest scum of the earth. Some in the earlier stages of the affair had hypocritically feigned sympathy, in order to provoke his confidence, and had then turned round to hold him up to execration and ridicule. One or two had behaved so badly that he had refused ever to receive them at his ...
— With Zola in England • Ernest Alfred Vizetelly

... one of the strongest was Falstaffe, who wrote in direct opposition to Steele's "Sir John Edgar", openly attempting to provoke that knight to a journalistic contest. But Edgar gave scant attention to his essays, though they were vigorously written and presented strong arguments in defense of the Lord Chamberlain's intervention in Drury Lane ...
— The Theater (1720) • Sir John Falstaffe

... recital of their beliefs provoke a smile, our amusement will soon be checked by the thought of the little progress which has been made in the last two hundred years, towards solving the same problem. The origin of evil, the ineradicable tendency of the human heart to sin and do evil, the mournful spectacle of ruin and desolation ...
— The Two Hundredth Anniversary of the Settlement of the Town of New Milford, Conn. June 17th, 1907 • Daniel Davenport

... the Royal Family, destitute of these familiar arts; or that she presumed so great a lady could scarcely stand in need of such ordinary accomplishments. In whatever way Mrs Jarley received the response, it did not provoke her to further questioning, or tempt her into any more remarks at the time, for she relapsed into a thoughtful silence, and remained in that state so long that Nell withdrew to the other window and rejoined her grandfather, who was ...
— The Old Curiosity Shop • Charles Dickens

... measure of a Cast, which often happened between them; for this Perez, being a person of a hot and fiery brain, without any judgment or understanding, would take the least occasion in the world to contend with and provoke the Inca .... Being no longer able to endure his rudeness, the Inca punched him on the breast, and bid him to consider with whom he talked. Perez, not considering in his heat and passion either his own safety or the safety of his Companions, ...
— Inca Land - Explorations in the Highlands of Peru • Hiram Bingham

... the power of it in myself? If so, and if thou sufferest for thy profession, thou sufferest, not only for righteousness, but also for righteousness' sake. Dost thou thus practise, because thou wouldest be taught to do outward acts of righteousness, and because thou wouldest provoke others to do so too? Dost thou show to others how thou lovest righteousness, by taking opportunities to do righteousness? How is it, dost thou show most mercy to thy dog, 36 or to thine enemy, to thy swine, or to the poor? Whose naked ...
— The Works of John Bunyan • John Bunyan

... accursed antichrist. They pronounced him a tyrannical usurper of the popedom, a wolf that had stolen into the fold. They called upon him to descend at once from the throne which he occupied without canonical title; if repentant, he might find mercy; if he persisted he would provoke the indignation of God, of the apostles St. Peter and St. Paul, and all of the saints, for his violation of the Spouse of Christ, the common Mother of the Faithful. It was signed by thirteen cardinals. The more ...
— The Great Events by Famous Historians, Volume 07 • Various

... deceived into thinking that his success was final. He accepted the protestations of obedience which were spontaneously offered him, but he undertook no further expedition of importance either to restrain or to provoke his enemies: the restricted rule which satisfied his exemplar Ramses II. ought, he thought, to be sufficient for ...
— History Of Egypt, Chaldaea, Syria, Babylonia, and Assyria, Volume 5 (of 12) • G. Maspero

... child!" Mrs. Flower would exclaim, as sometimes she caught them exchanging comments in this way. "And your father, there, is just as bad," she would say, impatient to provoke somebody. ...
— Young Lives • Richard Le Gallienne

... the recent article of Jeffrey ... I suppose the long and the short of it is, that he wishes to provoke me to reply. But I won't, for I owe him a good turn still for his kindness by-gone. Indeed, I presume that the present opportunity of attacking me again was irresistible; and I can't blame him, knowing what human nature is."—Letter ...
— The Works of Lord Byron, Volume 6 • Lord Byron

... seriously embarrassed the home and colonial governments, by thus breaking the peaceful understanding between the nations; and further, that he used his high position to provoke a rebellion, and deliberately deceived the home Government that he might be able to carry out his own personal plans. The Government in England is declared to be entirely innocent of any knowledge of the affair, but two officers of ...
— The Great Round World and What Is Going On In It, Vol. 1, No. 39, August 5, 1897 - A Weekly Magazine for Boys and Girls • Various

... bound, upon his table, and running rapidly through the four Gospels and the Acts of the Apostles, point out to him a long series of supernatural events there recorded; and show him that in their nature they are precisely the same as those modern miracles which provoke his disgust or contempt. You remind him, first of all, that our Lord Jesus Christ is the Head of the Church, and that all His people are made like Him, in His life and His sufferings, as well as in His glory; ...
— The Life of St. Frances of Rome, and Others • Georgiana Fullerton

... heart to do it,—yet, though you were dead and gone, I'd show you I'd a spirit, and marry again directly. Not but what it's ridiculous my talking in such a way, as I shall go long before you; still, mark my words, and don't provoke me with any will of that sort, or I'd do it- -as I'm a living woman in this bed ...
— Mrs. Caudle's Curtain Lectures • Douglas Jerrold

... fall upon himself alone, saying, "these sheep (the people) what have they done?" We may ask the same of the rank and file of our army. What have they done? It was not they who ordained the war, and so far as personal influence may have gone to provoke war, many of those who sit at home at ease are more to blame than the men who believe that they are obeying the call of duty when they offer themselves for perils, for hardships, wounds, sickness, and lingering as well ...
— Native Races and the War • Josephine Elizabeth Butler

... Americans do just as they like, and no one is ever surprised. The explanation is quite simple: "They are Americans." I have often noticed little faults of manners or breeding, which would shock one in a representative of an older civilisation, pass quite unnoticed, or merely provoke a ...
— My First Years As A Frenchwoman, 1876-1879 • Mary King Waddington

... Isthmus were anxious to have the negotiations ended and the digging begun. In October the President wrote to an intimate friend hoping that there might be a revolt of the Isthmus against Colombia, though disclaiming any intent to provoke one. The friend made the wish public over his own name, but before it appeared in print the revolt had taken place. It was known in advance to the State Department, which telegraphed on November 3, 1903, asking when it was to be precipitated. It took place later on ...
— The New Nation • Frederic L. Paxson

... may even be record of the fact somewhere, though I have found none in Lightfoot's Notes of the Assembly, nor in Gillespie's, nor in Baillie's Letters. But the peal was coming, and this daring challenge to the Assembly in his Bucer tract may have helped to provoke it. ...
— The Life of John Milton Vol. 3 1643-1649 • David Masson

... lookers-on at this dance. It was all monkey capers, but all with a meaning to the Indians beyond the perception of the whites. The Indian spectators made their remarks from their couches as the solemn mockeries proceeded, and the object of the remarks seemed to be to provoke the dancers to laugh by making fun, and the object of the dancers to provoke the fun-makers to laugh by performing extravagant caricatures with ...
— Continental Monthly , Vol I, Issue I, January 1862 - Devoted to Literature and National Policy • Various

... the brute with whom she has been quarrelling. A moment, there is silence in the hall; but only for a moment. The girl is picked up by one of her companions—a few rough jokes at her expense—and all goes on as before. Such scenes are of too frequent occurrence to provoke comment. Observe that couple descending the steps; a handsome, almost noble-looking man, but upon whose countenance is stamped the mark of a dissolute life—upon his arm, a female, her face hidden from view by a dark veil. They advance to the bar. The gentleman whispers ...
— The Secrets Of The Great City • Edward Winslow Martin

... His occasions of sorrow amongst his spiritual joys. The faith is embraced, notwithstanding the prince's example; and by what means. Divers conversions. He declares against the Bonzas. The Bonzas oppose the Christian religion. He answers the arguments of the Bonzas. The Bonzas provoke the king against the Christians. The number of Christians is augmented together with the reputation of the saint. He sends a Japonian Christian to the kingdom of Bungo; and for what reason. He departs from Amanguchi, and goes for Bungo. He falls sick with overtravelling himself; and after a little ...
— The Works of John Dryden, Volume XVI. (of 18) - The Life of St. Francis Xavier • John Dryden

... after many years, I find that it has not lost its power to provoke the most side-splitting laughter; and the same may be said of 'A Tramp Abroad' and 'Following the Equator', which, whilst not so boisterously comical, exhibit greater mastery and restraint. His own luck, as Mark Twain observed on one occasion, had ...
— Mark Twain • Archibald Henderson

... day I tried to provoke Lagrange into a quarrel, but the wily rascal, as if divining my intentions, only shrugged his shoulders and smiled in the cold and sarcastic manner peculiar to him. This enraged me greatly, and after applying the most abusive epithets to him, I finally struck him. But all availed nothing; ...
— Venus in Boston; - A Romance of City Life • George Thompson

... short time all these objections will provoke a smile, and I shall be asked to suppress them, together with my commentary on them, in future editions of this work. But at the present time they have a right to exist, and to be dealt with, although indeed it is not very easy to give a direct, clear and ...
— Spontaneous Activity in Education • Maria Montessori

... city all police pickets had been withdrawn, since their presence would only provoke disturbance and bloodshed. And the bazaar people were parading the streets, headed by an impromptu army of young hotheads, carrying lathis, crying their eternal 'Hai!' and 'Jai!' with extra special 'Jai's' for the 'King of Germany' and ...
— Far to Seek - A Romance of England and India • Maud Diver

... horrid events," continued Mr. Shellabarger, "not to revive frightful memories, or to bring back the impulses towards the perpetual severance of this people which they provoke. I allude to them to remind us how utter was the overthrow and the obliteration of all government, divine and human, how total was the wreck of all constitutions and laws, political, civil and international. I allude to them to ...
— Twenty Years of Congress, Volume 2 (of 2) • James Gillespie Blaine

... at his execution in order to preserve his body from the hands of the surgeons, which of all things he dreaded. And in order to avoid being anatomised, he affronted the court at the Old Bailey, at the time he received sentence of death, intending as he said to provoke them to hang him in chains, by which means he should escape the mangling of the surgeon's knives, which to him seemed ten thousand times worse than death itself. Thus confused he passed the last moments of his life, and with much ado recollected himself ...
— Lives Of The Most Remarkable Criminals Who have been Condemned and Executed for Murder, the Highway, Housebreaking, Street Robberies, Coining or other offences • Arthur L. Hayward

... said, as they were talking about it one afternoon after Minnie had gone home, "How far her saintliness will carry her. You all say that she never gets provoked except with me. Well, I promise you, I'll provoke her; I know her, and exactly how long any impression lasts with her. I suppose she's been attending some revival meeting and got this wonderful sweetness there, but I'll scatter it, I ...
— Hollowmell - or, A Schoolgirl's Mission • E.R. Burden

... shoulders. "You are behaving like a child of six, and really, if you go on, you will provoke me into treating you as such. The attitude you have chosen to adopt is neither sensible nor dignified, let me tell you. You resent my presence here. Very well; but you cannot prevent it. Would it not be much wiser of you either to submit to ...
— The Top of the World • Ethel M. Dell

... he said, 'and he knows very well what he is about. We have officially requested him to leave, and he sails from Newcastle on Monday. He will be shadowed wherever he goes, and we hope to provoke more outbreaks. He is a very ...
— Greenmantle • John Buchan

... lofty imagination, his work gives us little enlightenment except in so far as it shows a fine feeling for masses of color and problems of light. Though excellent portrait-painters, Ravesteyn (1572?-1657) and De Keyser (1596?-1679) do not provoke enthusiasm. They were quiet, conservative, dignified, painting civic guards and societies with a knowing brush and lively color, giving the truth of physiognomy, but not with that verve of the artist so conspicuous in Hals, nor with that unity of the group ...
— A Text-Book of the History of Painting • John C. Van Dyke

... with ruin smoke, And province after province feels the yoke. Already on our conquer'd castle's height The Danish watchfires redden all the night, Soon, soon, their inroads will our fate decide— Haste, let us spread th' eventful tidings wide, Arm every hand, provoke the lingering fight; And woe to him, that joys not at the sight! By this dread tree, which many an age has stood Unshaken, and survived the subject wood, Which never pruner's steel has dared invade, Nor venturous woodman lopp'd the hallow'd shade; By this dread tree I swear, ...
— Gustavus Vasa - and other poems • W. S. Walker

... not to admit that a favorable wind had arisen until the last possible moment. He did not wish to be taken by the strong British fleet waiting for him outside the harbor, and he desired, as he said, in order to provoke war between Holland and England, "to try the patience of the English party to the last bit of strain it would bear by keeping my anchorage in Dutch waters on plea of distress, and at the same time I wished to be ready for instant departure ...
— Paul Jones • Hutchins Hapgood

... conscious of a great agitation of mind, which I schooled myself to hide from the eyes of my guards, forcing myself to eat the breakfast for which I had no appetite. It would have eased me to pace up and down my room, but I forbore even from this, so that no restlessness might provoke their curiosity or suspicion. I sat for hours on my bed, awaiting the time for our attempt. The men brought me my midday meal: one of them made a brutal remark on my pallor; and then the door was shut, and they settled themselves to ...
— Humphrey Bold - A Story of the Times of Benbow • Herbert Strang

... taught them to subdue their foes, Cou'd order teach, and their high sp'rits compose: To ev'ry duty you'd their minds engage, Provoke their courage, ...
— The Lives of the Poets of Great Britain and Ireland (1753) - Volume II • Theophilus Cibber

... lawyers practicing at the M. bar to defend them. The offense charged was only assault and battery; but the evidence showed a conspiracy to inflict great violence on the person of the prosecutor, who had done nothing to provoke it, and that the attempt to effect it was followed by severe injury to him. The prosecutor was an original. He had been an old-field school-master, and was as conceited and pedantic a fellow as could be found in a summer's day, ...
— The Wit and Humor of America, Volume VII. (of X.) • Various

... told without overstepping the bounds of propriety and moderation, with her and there a studied manifestation of enthusiasm intended to provoke emulation. ...
— Mademoiselle Fifi • Guy de Maupassant

... church, he is very much mistaken. He may go his way, and I shall go mine. Let him preach at me as much as he will; I shall go to church all the more for that, to show him that I am not afraid." And so the Lord's warnings harden his heart, and provoke him to set his face like a flint, and become all ...
— Sermons on National Subjects • Charles Kingsley

... his good counselor protested: "Don't do anything idiotic, Ferragut; don't hunt the enemy, don't provoke him. Simply defend ...
— Mare Nostrum (Our Sea) - A Novel • Vicente Blasco Ibanez

... and addressed thee, saying, 'Do thou with thy wife bear me.' Thou didst what I bade, without the least scruple, O king! I became filled with delight at this. The gifts of wealth I made could not provoke thy anger. Pleased with thee, O king, I created with the aid of my Yoga puissance that forest which thyself with thy wife didst behold here. Listen, O monarch, to the object I had. For gratifying thee and thy queen I caused thee to have a glimpse of heaven. All those things which thou hast ...
— The Mahabharata of Krishna-Dwaipayana Vyasa, Volume 4 • Kisari Mohan Ganguli

... awoke, and the vapour had penetrated the mineral layer heaped up at the bottom of the crater. But would the subterranean fires provoke any violent eruption? This was an event which could not be foreseen. However, even while admitting the possibility of an eruption, it was not probable that the whole of Lincoln Island would suffer from it. The flow of volcanic matter is not ...
— The Secret of the Island • W.H.G. Kingston (translation from Jules Verne)

... you at Florence, though I don't wonder that you have forgotten it after so many yeirs. I would not have it talked of, for I find some grave personages are offended -with the liberties I have taken with so imperial a head. What could provoke them to give a column Christian ...
— The Letters of Horace Walpole Volume 3 • Horace Walpole

... producing his three hundred and fifty-four Bastards there, and not careful of Church matters at all,—had expressed his indignant surprise. And now, it would seem nevertheless, though the title remains where it was, the function has fallen to another, who actually does it: a thing to provoke ...
— History Of Friedrich II. of Prussia, Volume IV. (of XXI.) - Frederick The Great—Friedrich's Apprenticeship, First Stage—1713-1728 • Thomas Carlyle

... innocence. She had propitiated, ignored, eluded the more feminine amenities of fate. Of course, she had had her bad moments. She had been sorry, sometimes, and she had been sick; but on the whole her powers had been splendidly recuperative. She had shown none of those naked tender spots that provoke destiny to strike. And with it all she had preserved, perhaps too scrupulously, the rules laid down for such as she. She had kept her own place. She had never attempted to invade the sanctuaries set apart for ...
— The Immortal Moment - The Story of Kitty Tailleur • May Sinclair

... them. If they will to Angers, they must to Angers. But if I find trouble in Angers when I come, I will hang some one high. Don't scowl at me, man!"—in truth, the look of hate in Father Pezelay's eyes was enough to provoke the exclamation. "Some one, and it shall not be a bare patch on the crown will ...
— Count Hannibal - A Romance of the Court of France • Stanley J. Weyman

... we rested idly for another time of sleep. Occasionally we made a tentative tower attack which came to nothing. Tarrano waited; his barrage remained the same. We tried to provoke a move from ...
— Tarrano the Conqueror • Raymond King Cummings



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