From Middle English vexen, from Old French vexer, from Latin vēxāre (“disturb, agitate, annoy”). Displaced native Middle English grillen (“to vex, annoy”) from Old English grillan. Doublet of quake.
vex (third-person singular simple present vexes, present participle vexing, simple past and past participle vexed or (archaic) vext)
- (transitive, now rare) To trouble aggressively, to harass.
- (transitive) To annoy, irritate.
- (transitive) To cause (mental) suffering to; to distress.
- (transitive, rare) To twist, to weave.
- (intransitive, obsolete) To be irritated; to fret.
- (transitive) To toss back and forth; to agitate; to disquiet.
vex (plural vexes)
- (Scotland, obsolete) A trouble.