Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. An agent provocateur.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. One who engages in provocative behavior.
  • n. An undercover agent who incites suspected persons to partake in or commit criminal acts.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a secret agent who incites suspected persons to commit illegal acts

Etymologies

Borrowing from French provocateur. (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • Housh, an Internet activist and provocateur, is not an easy guy to characterize.

    RNB Roundup, Oct. 16, 2008: Religion in Politics; Battling Scientology; Church of England schism over gays; more…

  • Assuming for the sake of the argument that the website (which liked the sign) did not falsify the date of the post, that the picture was not photoshopped, and that the demonstrator was not a leftie agent provocateur, is that really enough to justify tens of thousands of smirking [expletive deleteds] like Dilan Esper calling all tea partiers ‘teabaggers’ ever after and insisting that they asked for it and that they took the name themselves?

    The Volokh Conspiracy » Racism and The Tea Partiers

  • Q: You're often called a provocateur as a director; are you upset if people don't walk out of your films?

    Brad Balfour: Defiant Danish Director Lars von Trier Tackles Antichrist

  • To this day I do not know whether the man was a lunatic, an imposter seeking money, or an agent provocateur, that is, one who imagined that he might through me inveigle M. Zola into an illegal act which would lead to prosecution and imprisonment.

    With Zola in England

  • Knepper, an openly gay political science major and a two-year columnist with the Eagle, is known as a provocateur, according to CASJC member Drew Franklin.

    ABC News: ABCNews

  • The so called provocateur that wrote the story and fabricated the story needs to be sued until he can't write ever again.

    The Full Feed from HuffingtonPost.com

  • On the other hand, if your goal is act as an fool provocateur, which is what many, if not most of us, believe, then you won't.

    Patent Law Blog (Patently-O)

  • Reasons to be Pretty is currently running at the Lyceum Theater, is known as a provocateur, but his show took things to the next level during the play's April 5 matinee.

    Broadway.Com Headlines

  • Dr. John Sullivan is well known as a provocateur, a characteristic which has both guided and distinguished our work throughout the years.

    XtremeRecruiting.tv

  • * But I'm more inclined to agree with Chris Cillizza, who says she's just playing her familiar role of "provocateur," though "demagogue" might be a better word for it.

    Happy Hour Roundup

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