agent-provocateur

agent provocateur

[ey-juhnt pruh-vok-uh-tur; French a-zhahn praw-vaw-ka-tœr]
noun, plural agents provocateurs [ey-juhnts pruh-vok-uh-tur; French a-zhahn praw-vaw-ka-tœr] .
a secret agent hired to incite suspected persons to some illegal action, outbreak, etc., that will make them liable to punishment.

Origin:
1875–80; < French: inciting agent; see provocation, -eur

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World English Dictionary
agent provocateur (aʒɑ̃ prɔvɔkatœr)
 
n , pl agents provocateurs
a secret agent employed to provoke suspected persons to commit illegal acts and so be discredited or liable to punishment

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