Etymology
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stimulate (v.)

1610s, "rouse to action," from Latin stimulatus, past participle of stimulare (see stimulation). Related: Stimulated; stimulating.

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pique (v.)

"to nettle, irritate, offend; stimulate to action by arousing envy, jealousy, etc., in a slight degree," 1670s, from French piquer "to prick, sting" (see pike (n.1)). Softened meaning "to stimulate, excite" is from 1690s. Related: Piqued; piquing.

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provoke (v.)

late 14c., provoken, in medicine, "to induce" (sleep, vomiting, etc.), "to stimulate" (appetite), from Old French provoker, provochier (12c., Modern French provoquer) and directly from Latin provocare "call forth, challenge," from pro "forth" (from PIE root *per- (1) "forward") + vocare "to call," which is related to vox (genitive vocis) "voice" (from PIE root *wekw- "to speak"). Related: Provoked; provoking. The general sense of "urge, incite, stimulate to action" is from c. 1400.

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koan (n.)

Zen paradox meant to stimulate the mind, 1918, from Japanese ko "public" + an "matter for thought."

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solicitate (v.)

1540s, from Latin solicitatus, past participle of sollicitare "to disturb, rouse, stimulate, provoke" (see solicit). Related: Solicitated; solicitating.

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goad (v.)

1570s, from goad (n.); earliest use is figurative, "incite, stimulate, instigate." Literal use by 1610s. Related: Goaded; goading.

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galvanize (v.)

1801, "stimulate by galvanic electricity," from French galvaniser, from galvanisme (see galvanism). Figurative sense of "excite, stimulate (as if by electricity)" first recorded 1853 (galvanic was in figurative use in 1807). Meaning "to coat with metal by means of galvanic electricity" (especially to plate iron with tin, but now typically to plate it with zinc) is from 1839.

He'll swear that in her dancing she cuts all others out,
Though like a Gal that's galvanized, she throws her legs about.
[Thomas Hood, "Love has not Eyes," 1845]

Related: Galvanized; galvanizing.

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tonic (n.1)

"a tonic medicine," 1799, from tonic (adj.). From 1873 (in gin and tonic) as short for tonic water (1861 as a commercial product, water infused with quinine), so called because held to aid digestion and stimulate appetite.

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stimulant (adj.)

1772, from French stimulant or directly from Latin stimulantem (nominative stimulans), present participle of stimulare "to prick, urge, stimulate" (see stimulation). As a noun from 1794.

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motivate (v.)

"to stimulate toward action, act as the inciting cause of," 1863, from motive + -ate (2); perhaps modeled on French motiver or German motivieren. Related: Motivated; motivating.

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