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Permanent link for this word: vexatious


Pronunciation RealAudio

vexatious (vek-SAY-shuhs) adjective

1. Causing vexation or irritation.

2. A legal action instituted on insufficient grounds and brought solely to annoy the defendant.

[From Middle English vexacioun, from Latin vexation, from vexatus, past participle of vexare, to vex.]

"`When I arrived at Baker Street I found him huddled up in his armchair with updrawn knees, his pipe in his mouth and his brow furrowed with thought. It was clear that he was in the throes of some vexatious problem.'" Sir Arthur Conan Doyle, The Adventure of the Creeping Man.

This week's theme: words from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's writings.


If you put a chain around the neck of a slave, the other end fastens itself around your own. -Ralph Waldo Emerson, writer and philosopher (1803-1882)

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