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[tit-l-eyt] /ˈtɪt lˌeɪt/
verb (used with object), titillated, titillating.
to excite or arouse agreeably:
to titillate the fancy.
Synonyms: rouse, tempt, tease.
to tickle; excite a tingling or itching sensation in, as by touching or stroking lightly.
Origin of titillate
1610-20; < Latin tītillātus, past participle of tītillāre to tickle; see -ate1
Related forms
titillation, noun
titillative, adjective
untitillated, adjective
untitillating, adjective
Can be confused
tantalizing, titillating.
titillate, titivate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for titillate
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • She has spent hours in the hot kitchen trying to concoct some dainty that may titillate that sickly palate.

    Doctor Cupid Rhoda Broughton
  • Whether or no the involutions of the "Golden Bowl" will titillate his arcane sensibilities.

    Instigations Ezra Pound
  • It must be more strongly spiced to titillate a jaded palate.

    Expositions of Holy Scripture Alexander Maclaren
  • Out of the dense formations of endless fast food chains, Simon's novelties were to titillate the jaded restaurant goer.

    The Land of Look Behind Paul Cameron Brown
  • When that palled, this came to titillate the jaded desires with a new form of gratification.

  • This gave me a good opportunity to titillate both sides of his neck, and he sprang round again.

    Mass' George George Manville Fenn
  • I don't care for books that only titillate one's imagination.

    Mount Royal, Volume 2 of 3 Mary Elizabeth Braddon
British Dictionary definitions for titillate


verb (transitive)
to arouse, tease, interest, or excite pleasurably and often superficially
to cause a tickling or tingling sensation in, esp by touching
Derived Forms
titillating, adjective
titillatingly, adverb
titillation, noun
titillative, adjective
Word Origin
C17: from Latin tītillāre
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
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Word Origin and History for titillate

1610s, back-formation from titillation. Related: Titillated; titillating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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