verb (used with object), teased, teasing.
to irritate or provoke with persistent petty distractions, trifling raillery, or other annoyance, often in sport.
to pull apart or separate the adhering fibers of (wool or the like), as in combing or carding; comb or card, as wool; shred.
to ruffle (the hair) by holding it at the ends and combing toward the scalp so as to give body to a hairdo.
to raise a nap on (cloth) with teasels; teasel.
Also, teaser. Television Slang. a short scene or highlight shown at the beginning of a film or television show to attract the audience's attention.
verb (used without object), teased, teasing.
to provoke or disturb a person or animal by importunity or persistent petty annoyances.
a person who teases or annoys.
the act of teasing or the state of being teased.

before 1000; Middle English tesen (v.), Old English tǣsan to pull, tear, comb; cognate with Middle Low German tesen, Old High German zeisan to pluck

teasable, adjective
teasableness, noun
teasingly, adverb
outtease, verb (used with object), outteased, outteasing.
unteased, adjective

1. trouble, disturb, vex; harass. See bother.

1. mollify.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
tease (tiːz)
1.  to annoy (someone) by deliberately offering something with the intention of delaying or withdrawing the offer
2.  to arouse sexual desire in (someone) with no intention of satisfying it
3.  to vex (someone) maliciously or playfully, esp by ridicule
4.  (tr) to separate the fibres of; comb; card
5.  (tr) to raise the nap of (a fabric) with a teasel
6.  (US), (Canadian) Also: backcomb to comb the under layers of (the hair) towards the roots to give more bulk to a hairstyle
7.  (tr) to loosen or pull apart (biological tissues, etc) by delicate agitation or prodding with an instrument
8.  a person or thing that teases
9.  the act of teasing
[Old English tǣsan; related to Old High German zeisan to pick]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Word Origin & History

O.E. tæsan "pluck, pull apart" (fibers of wool, flax, etc.), from W.Gmc. *taisijanan (cf. Dan. tæse, M.Du. tesen, Du. tezen "to draw, pull, scratch," O.H.G. zeisan "to tease, pick wool"). The original sense is of running thorns through wool or flax to separate, shred, or card the fibers.
The figurative sense of "vex, worry, annoy" emerged 1619. For similar sense development, see heckle. Hairdressing sense is recorded from 1957. Noun meaning "one who teases" is first recorded 1852; specifically as short for cock-teaser it was in use by 1976. Teaser "short sample, introductory advertisement" is attested from 1934
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

tease (tēz)
v. teased, teas·ing, teas·es
To separate the structural parts of a tissue, as with a needle, in order to prepare it for microscopic examination.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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Example sentences
The sons teased her all the time and roared with boisterous pleasure when she
  gave them back sharp hits.
The warm breeze tickled and teased our noses perfumed with sweet honeysuckle
  infused with freshly mowed lawns.
Theorists of how these developments interlace and how the causal factors are to
  be teased apart disagree profoundly.
Those multiple factors can be teased out and studied, but no one yet has
  committed the resources to do so.
Related Words
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