frenetic

adjective fre·net·ic \ fri-ˈne-tik \

Definition of frenetic

:frenzied, frantic
  • a frenetic attempt to beat a deadline
  • frenetic bursts of energy

frenetically

play \fri-ˈne-ti-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

freneticism

play \fri-ˈne-tə-ˌsi-zəm\ noun

frenetic was our Word of the Day on 11/26/2010. Hear the podcast!

Examples of frenetic in a Sentence

  1. The celebration was noisy and frenetic.

  2. the frenetic rush to get every member of the cast in place before the curtain went up

Recent Examples of frenetic from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'frenetic.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

When life gets frenetic, things can seem absolutely insane - at least that seems to be what folks in the Middle Ages thought. Frenetik, in Middle English, meant "insane." When the word no longer denoted stark raving madness, it conjured up fanatical zealots. Today its seriousness has been downgraded to something more akin to hectic. But if you trace frenetic back through Anglo-French and Latin, you'll find that it comes from Greek phrenitis, a term describing an inflammation of the brain. Phrēn, the Greek word for "mind," is a root you will recognize in schizophrenic. As for frenzied and frantic, they're not only synonyms of frenetic but relatives as well. Frantic comes from frenetik, and frenzied traces back to phrenitis.

Origin and Etymology of frenetic

Middle English frenetik insane, from Anglo-French, from Latin phreneticus, modification of Greek phrenitikos, from phrenitis inflammation of the brain, from phren-, phrēn diaphragm, mind


FRENETIC Defined for English Language Learners

frenetic

adjective

Definition of frenetic for English Language Learners

  • : filled with excitement, activity, or confusion : wild or frantic



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