hys·​ter·​ics hi-ˈster-iks How to pronounce hysterics (audio)
plural in form but singular or plural in construction
: a fit of uncontrollable laughter or crying

Examples of hysterics in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web On the night of June 7, 2021, Murdaugh called the police in hysterics. Andrea Marks, Rolling Stone, 25 Jan. 2023 The unexpected loss sends the party into hysterics, with Benoit suspecting foul play as the lights of the compound go out—a melodramatic flair Miles had originally concocted to coincide with the dinner. Lauren Puckett-Pope, ELLE, 23 Dec. 2022 DeLonge, Barker and Hoppus cause hysterics around town and turn heads from running round totally naked, with the exception of socks and sneakers. Starr Bowenbank, Billboard, 13 Dec. 2022 While folks always think The Lost Daughter actress' looks are incredible, this bold one had them in hysterics. Adrianna Freedman, Good Housekeeping, 10 Dec. 2022 More free speech on Twitter ‘will literally kill people,’ cry the hysterics. Nate Hochman, National Review, 3 Dec. 2022 Brecken Merrill does a fantastic job in a claustrophobic scene as Tate struggles to get out of the car wreck, as well as his subsequent shock and hysterics while searching for his mother. William Earl, Variety, 13 Nov. 2022 Her melismatic runs sent a female congregant into spasms of holy hysterics. Robert Marovich, WSJ, 10 Sep. 2022 His mother, instead of reacting with the usual ecstasy of the Initiates, had gone into hysterics, threatening to expose everything, to denounce them. Benjamin P. Russell, New York Times, 17 Oct. 2022 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'hysterics.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1664, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of hysterics was in 1664

Dictionary Entries Near hysterics

Cite this Entry

“Hysterics.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/hysterics. Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition


noun singular or plural
hys·​ter·​ics his-ˈter-iks How to pronounce hysterics (audio)
: a fit of uncontrollable laughter or crying

Medical Definition


noun, plural in form but singular or plural in construction
hys·​ter·​ics -ˈter-iks How to pronounce hysterics (audio)
: a fit of uncontrollable laughter or crying : hysteria

More from Merriam-Webster on hysterics

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