Etymology
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aggravate (v.)

1520s, "make heavy, burden down," from Latin aggravatus, past participle of aggravare "to render more troublesome," literally "to make heavy or heavier, add to the weight of," from ad "to" (see ad-) + gravare "weigh down," from gravis "heavy" (from PIE root *gwere- (1) "heavy"). The literal sense in English has become obsolete; meaning "to make a bad thing worse" is from 1590s; colloquial sense "exasperate, annoy" is from 1610s. The earlier English verb was aggrege "make heavier or more burdensome; make more oppressive; increase, intensify" (late 14c.), from Old French agreger.

To aggravate has properly only one meaning — to make (an evil) worse or more serious. [Fowler]
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aggravated (adj.)
1540s, "increased, magnified," past-participle adjective from aggravate. Meaning "irritated" is from 1610s; that of "made worse" is from 1630s. The earlier adjective was simply aggravate "threatened" (late 15c.), from the Latin past participle.
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reaggravate (v.)

also re-aggravate, 1610s, "to make still heavier" (a sense now obsolete), from re- "again" + aggravate. The same word was used late 15c. as a past-participle adjective meaning "censured a second time." Related: Reaggravated; reaggravating; reaggravation.

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aggravating (adj.)
1670s, "making worse or more heinous" (implied in aggravatingly), present-participle adjective from aggravate (v.). Phrase aggravating circumstances is recorded from 1790. Weakened sense of "provoking, annoying" is by 1775. An earlier adjective in the sense "troublesome, causing difficulty" was Middle English aggravaunt (mid-15c.)
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*gwere- (1)
gwerə-, Proto-Indo-European root meaning "heavy."

It forms all or part of: aggravate; aggravation; aggrieve; bar (n.4) "unit of pressure;" bariatric; baritone; barium; barometer; blitzkrieg; brig; brigade; brigand; brigantine; brio; brut; brute; charivari; gravamen; grave (adj.); gravid; gravimeter; gravitate; gravity; grief; grieve; kriegspiel; guru; hyperbaric; isobar; quern; sitzkrieg.

It is the hypothetical source of/evidence for its existence is provided by: Sanskrit guruh "heavy, weighty, venerable;" Greek baros "weight," barys "heavy in weight," often with the notion of "strength, force;" Latin gravis, "heavy, ponderous, burdensome, loaded; pregnant;" Old English cweorn "quern;" Gothic kaurus "heavy;" Lettish gruts "heavy."
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gravitate (v.)

1640s, "exert weight; move downward" (obsolete), from Modern Latin gravitare (16c. in scientific writing), from Latin gravitas "heaviness, weight," from gravis "heavy" (from PIE root *gwere- (1) "heavy"). Meaning "be affected by gravity" is from 1690s. Figurative sense "be strongly attracted to, have a natural tendency toward" is from 1670s. Related: Gravitated; gravitating. The classical Latin verb was gravare "to make heavy, burden, oppress, aggravate."

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-ate (2)
verbal suffix for Latin verbs in -are, identical with -ate (1). Old English commonly made verbs from adjectives by adding a verbal ending to the word (such as gnornian "be sad, mourn," gnorn "sad, depressed"), but as the inflections wore off English words in late Old and early Middle English, there came to be no difference between the adjective and the verb in dry, empty, warm, etc. Thus accustomed to the identity of adjectival and verbal forms of a word, the English, when they began to expand their Latin-based vocabulary after c. 1500, simply made verbs from Latin past-participial adjectives without changing their form (such as aggravate, substantiate) and it became the custom that Latin verbs were Englished from their past participle stems.
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