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intensify; worsen; inflame; increase the severity of: Her response only exacerbated the situation.
Not to be confused with:
exasperate – annoy extremely; incense; vex; anger: She was exasperated by the noisy neighbors.
Abused, Confused, & Misused Words by Mary Embree Copyright © 2007, 2013 by Mary Embree
tr.v. ex·ac·er·bat·ed, ex·ac·er·bat·ing, ex·ac·er·bates
To increase the severity, violence, or bitterness of; aggravate: a speech that exacerbated racial tensions; a heavy rainfall that exacerbated the flood problems.
[Latin exacerbāre, exacerbāt- : ex-, intensive pref.; see ex- + acerbāre, to make harsh (from acerbus, harsh; see ak- in Indo-European roots).]
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
1. to make (pain, disease, emotion, etc) more intense; aggravate
2. to exasperate or irritate (a person)
[C17: from Latin exacerbāre to irritate, from acerbus bitter]
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
ex•ac•er•bate(ɪgˈzæs ərˌbeɪt, ɛkˈsæs-)
v.t. -bat•ed, -bat•ing.
1. to increase the severity, bitterness, or violence of (disease, ill feeling, etc.).
2. to embitter the feelings of (a person).
[1650–60; < Latin exacerbātus, past participle of exacerbāre to exasperate =ex- ex-1 + acerbāre to make bitter]
Random House Kernerman Webster's College Dictionary, © 2010 K Dictionaries Ltd. Copyright 2005, 1997, 1991 by Random House, Inc. All rights reserved.
Past participle: exacerbated
Collins English Verb Tables © HarperCollins Publishers 2011
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|Verb||1.||exacerbate - make worse; "This drug aggravates the pain"|
irritate - excite to an abnormal condition, or chafe or inflame; "Aspirin irritates my stomach"
inflame - cause inflammation in; "The repetitive motion inflamed her joint"
alter, change, modify - cause to change; make different; cause a transformation; "The advent of the automobile may have altered the growth pattern of the city"; "The discussion has changed my thinking about the issue"
|2.||exacerbate - exasperate or irritate |
anger - make angry; "The news angered him"
Based on WordNet 3.0, Farlex clipart collection. © 2003-2012 Princeton University, Farlex Inc.
verb make worse, excite, provoke, irritate, intensify, worsen, infuriate, aggravate (informal), enrage, madden, inflame, exasperate, vex, embitter, add insult to injury, fan the flames of, envenom Their poverty has been exacerbated by racial divisions.
Collins Thesaurus of the English Language – Complete and Unabridged 2nd Edition. 2002 © HarperCollins Publishers 1995, 2002
Collins Spanish Dictionary - Complete and Unabridged 8th Edition 2005 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1971, 1988 © HarperCollins Publishers 1992, 1993, 1996, 1997, 2000, 2003, 2005
Collins English/French Electronic Resource. © HarperCollins Publishers 2005
Collins German Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged 7th Edition 2005. © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1980 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1997, 1999, 2004, 2005, 2007
exacerbate[ɪgzˈæsəˌbeɪt] (frm) vt (pain) → aggravare; (relations, situation) → esacerbare, inasprire
Collins Italian Dictionary 1st Edition © HarperCollins Publishers 1995