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Incite vs Instigate vs Abet vs Foment

Incite, instigateabetfoment are comparable when they mean to spur on to action or to excite into activity.

Incite stresses stirring up and urging on; frequently it implies active prompting.

Instigate, in contrast with incite, unequivocally implies prompting and responsibility for the initiation of the action; it also commonly connotes underhandedness and evil intention; thus, one may be incited but not instigated to the performance of a good act; one may be incited or instigated to the commission of a crime.

Abet tends to lose its original implication of baiting or hounding on and to emphasize its acquired implications of seconding, supporting, and encouraging.

Foment stresses persistence in goading; thus, one who incites rebellion may provide only the initial stimulus; one who foments rebellion keeps the rebellious spirit alive by supplying fresh incitements.