One of the mysteries of the English language finally explained.
An attack of anxiety.‘I had a crise de nerfs before the first performance’
- ‘Few were hardy enough to be fixedly stared at by Thomas Carlyle for forty-five seconds without suffering a crise de nerfs.’
- ‘Many of these scares ended in laughter, the Frenchmen ragging us for our crises de nerfs, but they did not quite like it themselves, lying helpless in bed.’
- ‘She would have a crise de nerfs did she think Brian were in danger.’
- ‘Any minor setback sets off a crise de nerfs, a fit of the vapours turning any mishap into a crisis.’
- ‘Is Edward Rochester a man to whom we entrust Jane Eyre with confidence, should she suffer a crise de nerfs later in life?’
French, literally ‘crisis of nerves’.
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