1. stirred emotionally; agitated: An excited crowd awaited the arrival of the famed rock group.
  2. stimulated to activity; brisk: an excited buying and selling of stocks.

verb (used with object), ex·cit·ed, ex·cit·ing.

  1. to arouse or stir up the emotions or feelings of: to excite a person to anger; actions that excited his father’s wrath.
  2. to arouse or stir up (emotions or feelings): to excite jealousy or hatred.
  3. to cause; awaken: to excite interest or curiosity.
  4. to stir to action; provoke or stir up: to excite a dog by baiting him.
  5. Physiology. to stimulate: to excite a nerve.
  6. Electricity. to supply with electricity for producing electric activity or a magnetic field: to excite a dynamo.
  7. Physics. to raise (an atom, molecule, etc.) to an excited state.


  1. emotionally aroused, esp to pleasure or agitation
  2. characterized by excitementan excited dance
  3. sexually aroused
  4. (of an atom, molecule, etc) occupying an energy level above the ground state

verb (tr)

  1. to arouse (a person) to strong feeling, esp to pleasurable anticipation or nervous agitation
  2. to arouse or elicit (an emotion, response, etc); evokeher answers excited curiosity
  3. to cause or bring about; stir upto excite a rebellion
  4. to arouse sexually
  5. physiol to cause a response in or increase the activity of (an organ, tissue, or part); stimulate
  6. to raise (an atom, molecule, electron, nucleus, etc) from the ground state to a higher energy level
  7. to supply electricity to (the coils of a generator or motor) in order to create a magnetic field
  8. to supply a signal to a stage of an active electronic circuit

1650s, “magnetically or electrically stimulated;” modern sense of “agitated” attested 1855; past participle adjective from excite. Related: Excitedly.


mid-14c., “to move, stir up, instigate,” from Old French esciter (12c.) or directly from Latin excitare “rouse, call out, summon forth, produce,” frequentative of exciere “call forth, instigate,” from ex- “out” (see ex-) + ciere “set in motion, call” (see cite). Of feelings, from late 14c. Of bodily organs or tissues, from 1831. Main modern sense of “emotionally agitate” is first attested 1821.

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