Something that's stirring is gripping or moving—it inspires some kind of powerful emotion, like Martin Luther King, Jr.'s stirring "I Have a Dream" speech.

When people sing stirring songs at church, during a protest march, or around the piano at home, they might make you cry, while a stirring public speaker often makes the crowd feel enthusiastic and roused to action. In the 15th century, this adjective had a much more literal meaning: "in active motion, or animated." The verb stir, "move, rouse, or agitate," shares a root with storm.

Definitions of stirring
  1. adjective
    exciting strong but not unpleasant emotions
    “a stirring speech”
    synonyms: soul-stirring
    arousing or capable of arousing deep emotion
  2. adjective
    capable of arousing enthusiasm or excitement
    stirring events such as wars and rescues”
    synonyms: rousing
    rousing or quickening activity or the senses
  3. noun
    agitating a liquid with an implement
    “constant stirring prevents it from burning on the bottom of the pan”
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    type of:
    the act of agitating something; causing it to move around (usually vigorously)
  4. noun
    arousing to a particular emotion or action
    synonyms: inspiration
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    type of:
    arousal, rousing
    the act of arousing
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