tr.v. in·sti·gat·ed, in·sti·gat·ing, in·sti·gates
1. To initiate or bring about, often by inciting: instigate a public discussion of the issue; instigate an uprising.
2. To urge on; goad: tried to instigate the people to revolt.
[Latin īnstīgāre, īnstīgāt-; see steig- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2019 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.