I am looking for a verb, idiom or proverb that describes a situation that somebody tries to make two parties angry from each other.

I found that mischief-maker means a person who create troubles for others but it doesn't really mean what I am looking for.

  • There's "pick a fight", but that's usually on the part of one party.
    – Hot Licks
    Nov 8, 2015 at 7:05
  • @HadiRj "stir up a fight (between two people, etc.)"...
    – Elian
    Nov 8, 2015 at 9:04

3 Answers 3


drive a wedge between: cause disagreement or hostility between:

'Clearly, terrorism is about driving a wedge between east and west.'


Instigator is an exceptional word to use.
Cambridge Dictionary Online defines instigator as such:

A ​person who ​causes something to ​happen, ​especially something ​bad.


Another word you can use is provoker and foment.
You can see the definitions here and here.


The collocation to sow discord might work:

discord: tension or strife resulting from a lack of agreement; dissension.

(AHD, Google Ngram)

Another old expression comes from the Bible: to sow strife or plant the seeds of strife (depending on the translation).

A froward man soweth strife: and a whisperer separateth chief friends.

(King James Bible, Proverbs 16:28)

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