verb (used with object), piqued, piqu·ing.

  1. to affect with sharp irritation and resentment, especially by some wound to pride: She was greatly piqued when they refused her invitation.
  2. to wound (the pride, vanity, etc.).
  3. to excite (interest, curiosity, etc.): Her curiosity was piqued by the gossip.
  4. to arouse an emotion or provoke to action: to pique someone to answer a challenge.
  5. Archaic. to pride (oneself) (usually followed by on or upon).

verb (used without object), piqued, piqu·ing.

  1. to arouse pique in someone: an action that piqued when it was meant to soothe.


  1. a feeling of irritation or resentment, as from a wound to pride or self-esteem: to be in a pique.
  2. Obsolete. a state of irritated feeling between persons.


  1. a feeling of resentment or irritation, as from having one’s pride wounded

verb piques, piquing or piqued (tr)

  1. to cause to feel resentment or irritation
  2. to excite or arouse
  3. (foll by on or upon) to pride or congratulate (oneself)


  1. a score of 30 points made by a player from a combination of cards held before play begins and from play while his opponent’s score is nil


  1. to score a pique (against)


  1. a close-textured fabric of cotton, silk, or spun rayon woven with lengthwise ribs

n.1530s, “fit of ill feeling,” from Middle French pique “a prick, sting, irritation,” noun of action from piquer (see pike (n.2)). v.“to excite to anger,” 1670s, from French piquer “to prick, sting” (see pike (n.2)). Softened meaning “to stimulate, excite” is from 1690s. Related: Piqued; piquing.

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