Quiz: Remember the definition of mal de mer?


[uh-rouz] /əˈraʊz/
verb (used with object), aroused, arousing.
to stir to action or strong response; excite:
to arouse a crowd; to arouse suspicion.
to stimulate sexually.
to awaken; wake up:
The footsteps aroused the dog.
verb (used without object), aroused, arousing.
to awake or become aroused:
At dawn the farmers began to arouse.
1585-95; a-3 + rouse1, modeled on arise
Related forms
arousability, noun
arousable, adjective
[uh-rou-zuh l] /əˈraʊ zəl/ (Show IPA),
arouser, noun
nonarousal, noun
overarousal, noun
rearousal, noun
rearouse, verb, rearoused, rearousing.
semiarousal, noun
subarousal, noun
unarousable, adjective
unaroused, adjective
unarousing, adjective
well-aroused, adjective
Can be confused
arose, arouse.
1. animate; inspirit, inspire; incite, provoke, instigate; stimulate, kindle, fire.
1. calm. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for arousal
  • They rated each ritual's frequency and the level of arousal involved.
  • It is primarily based on physical arousal and lasts as long.
  • Apparently, success in the sleepy subjects required activation of the hippocampus together with basic arousal circuits.
  • So first one area that brings people together is some kind of arousal, right.
  • But the phenomenon of early arousal may be widespread.
  • If so, she might not be able to handle that state of arousal and hence, pees in her crate.
  • Sleep, for example, is a change in your arousal state.
  • More rigorous studies might have looked for signs of physical arousal in the presence of various stimuli.
  • Tactile arousal threshold of sleeping king penguins in a breeding colony.
  • Low arousal, measured along a continuous scale between these endpoints.
British Dictionary definitions for arousal


(transitive) to evoke or elicit (a reaction, emotion, or response); stimulate
to awaken from sleep
Derived Forms
arousal, noun
arouser, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for arousal

1827, "action of arousing, a being awakened" from arouse + -al (2). Sexual association is from c.1900.



1590s, "awaken" (transitive), from a- (1) "on" + rouse. Related: Aroused; arousing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
Encyclopedia Article for arousal

in psychology, the stimulation of the cerebral cortex into a state of general wakefulness, or attention. Activation proceeds from various portions of the brain, but primarily from the reticular formation, the nerve network in the midbrain that monitors ingoing and outgoing sensory and motor impulses. Activation, however, is not the same as direct cortical stimulation by specific sense receptors, such as being awakened by noise. It involves, rather, a complex of impulses that are both internal and external to the body. Electroencephalography (EEG) measures the degree of arousal.

Learn more about arousal with a free trial on
Encyclopedia Britannica, 2008. Encyclopedia Britannica Online.
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for arouse

Most English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for arousal

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with arousal

Nearby words for arousal