What does irritate mean?

Definitions for irritate
ˈɪr ɪˌteɪtir·ri·tate

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word irritate.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. annoy, rag, get to, bother, get at, irritate, rile, nark, nettle, gravel, vex, chafe, devilverb

    cause annoyance in; disturb, especially by minor irritations

    "Mosquitoes buzzing in my ear really bothers me"; "It irritates me that she never closes the door after she leaves"

  2. irritateverb

    excite to an abnormal condition, or chafe or inflame

    "Aspirin irritates my stomach"

  3. irritateverb

    excite to some characteristic action or condition, such as motion, contraction, or nervous impulse, by the application of a stimulus

    "irritate the glands of a leaf"


  1. irritateverb

    To provoke impatience, anger, or displeasure.

  2. irritateverb

    To introduce irritability.

  3. irritateverb

    To cause or induce displeasure or irritation.

  4. irritateverb

    To induce pain in (all or part of a body or organism).

  5. Etymology: From irritatus, past participle of irritare

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. To IRRITATEverb

    Etymology: irrito, Latin; irriter, French.

    The earl, speaking to the freeholders in imperious language, did not irritate the people. Francis Bacon, Henry VII.

    His power at court could not qualify him to go through with that difficult reformation, whilst he had a superior in the church, who, having the reins in his hand, could slacken them according to his own humour and indiscretion, and was thought to be the more remiss to irritate his cholerick disposition. Edward Hyde.

    Cold maketh the spirits vigorous, and irritateth them. Francis Bacon.

    Air, if very cold, irritateth the flame, and maketh it burn more fiercely, as fire scorcheth in frosty weather. Francis Bacon.

    When they are collected, the heat becometh more violent and irritate, and thereby expelleth sweat. Francis Bacon, Nat. Hist.

    By dash of clouds, or irritating war
    Of fighting winds, while all is calm below,
    They furious spring. James Thomson, Summer.


  1. irritate

    Irritation, in biology and physiology, is a state of inflammation or painful reaction to allergy or cell-lining damage. A stimulus or agent which induces the state of irritation is an irritant. Irritants are typically thought of as chemical agents (for example phenol and capsaicin) but mechanical, thermal (heat), and radiative stimuli (for example ultraviolet light or ionising radiations) can also be irritants. Irritation also has non-clinical usages referring to bothersome physical or psychological pain or discomfort. Irritation can also be induced by some allergic response due to exposure of some allergens for example contact dermatitis, irritation of mucosal membranes and pruritus. Mucosal membrane is the most common site of irritation because it contains secretory glands that release mucous which attracts the allergens due to its sticky nature. Chronic irritation is a medical term signifying that afflictive health conditions have been present for a while. There are many disorders that can cause chronic irritation, the majority involve the skin, vagina, eyes and lungs.


  1. irritate

    To irritate means to annoy someone or cause discomfort or slight inflammation in a part of the body. It can also refer to causing impatience, anger, or displeasure in a minor but persistent way.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Irritateverb

    to render null and void

  2. Irritateverb

    to increase the action or violence of; to heighten excitement in; to intensify; to stimulate

  3. Irritateverb

    to excite anger or displeasure in; to provoke; to tease; to exasperate; to annoy; to vex; as, the insolence of a tyrant irritates his subjects

  4. Irritateverb

    to produce irritation in; to stimulate; to cause to contract. See Irritation, n., 2

  5. Irritatenoun

    to make morbidly excitable, or oversensitive; to fret; as, the skin is irritated by friction; to irritate a wound by a coarse bandage

  6. Irritateadjective

    excited; heightened

  7. Etymology: [See 1 st Irritant.]

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Irritate

    ir′i-tāt, v.t. to make angry: to provoke: to excite heat and redness in: (Scots law) to render null and void.—n. Irritabil′ity, the quality of being easily irritated: the peculiar susceptibility to stimuli possessed by the living tissues.—adj. Irr′itable, that may be irritated: easily provoked: (med.) susceptible of excitement or irritation.—n. Irr′itableness.—adv. Irr′itably.—n. Irr′itancy, the state of being irritant: a becoming null and void.—adj. Irr′itant, irritating.—n. that which causes irritation.—n. Irritā′tion, act of irritating or exciting: excitement: (med.) the term applied to any morbid excitement of the vital actions not amounting to inflammation, often, but not always, leading to that condition.—adjs. Irr′itātive, Irr′itātory, tending to irritate or excite: accompanied with or caused by irritation. [L. irritāre, -ātum, prob. freq. of irrīre, to snarl, as a dog.]

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  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of irritate in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of irritate in Pythagorean Numerology is: 1

Examples of irritate in a Sentence

  1. Queen Victoria, in a letter to King Leopold of Belgium, April 4, 1848:

    Great events make me quiet and calm; it is only trifles that irritate my nerves.

  2. Ellen Mowry:

    Caffeine can irritate the bladder, increasing problems with urination that some people with MS already experience.

  3. Richard Rosenfeld:

    They can irritate and cause more problems than good.

  4. Glenn Harnett:

    PVC also releases gases known as volatile organic compounds, which are gases that can irritate the eyes, nose, and lungs.

  5. Max Maizels:

    Keep things that may irritate the bladder away from the diet while the bedwetting is resolving like carbonated beverages, citrus, melons, caffeinated foods.

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Translations for irritate

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"irritate." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 3 Oct. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/irritate>.

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    denote or connote
    • A. aggravate
    • B. signify
    • C. emerge
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