Dictionary

hysteria

noun hys·te·ria \his-ˈter-ē-ə, -ˈtir-\

: a state in which your emotions (such as fear) are so strong that you behave in an uncontrolled way

: a situation in which many people behave or react in an extreme or uncontrolled way because of fear, anger, etc.

Full Definition of HYSTERIA

1
:  a psychoneurosis marked by emotional excitability and disturbances of the psychic, sensory, vasomotor, and visceral functions
2
:  behavior exhibiting overwhelming or unmanageable fear or emotional excess <political hysteria>
hys·ter·ic \-ˈter-ik\ noun
hys·ter·i·cal \-ˈter-i-kəl\ also hysteric adjective
hys·ter·i·cal·ly \-i-k(ə-)lē\ adverb
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Examples of HYSTERIA

  1. A few of the children began to scream, and soon they were all caught up in the hysteria.
  2. Wartime hysteria led to many unfair accusations of treachery.
  3. The spreading of the disease caused mass hysteria in the village.

Origin of HYSTERIA

New Latin, from English hysteric, adjective, from Latin hystericus, from Greek hysterikos, from hystera womb; from the Greek notion that hysteria was peculiar to women and caused by disturbances of the uterus
First Known Use: 1801

Other Psychology Terms

fetish, hypochondria, intelligence, mania, narcissism, neurosis, pathological, psychosis, schadenfreude, subliminal
HYSTERIC Defined for Kids

hysteria

noun hys·te·ria \hi-ˈster-ē-ə\

Definition of HYSTERIA for Kids

:  a state in which emotions (as fear or joy) are so strong that a person acts in an uncontrolled way
Medical Dictionary

hysteria

noun hys·te·ria \his-ˈter-ē-ə, -ˈtir-\

Medical Definition of HYSTERIA

1
a :  a psychoneurosis marked by emotional excitability and disturbances of the psychic, sensory, vasomotor, and visceral functions without an organic basis b :  a similar condition in domestic animals
2
:  behavior exhibiting overwhelming or unmanageable fear or emotional excess

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