Definition of hysteric in US English:

hysteric

noun

  • 1hystericsinformal A wildly emotional and exaggerated reaction.

    ‘the child has been seized with regular fits of hysterics at bedtime’
    • ‘Peter's wink sent Jes right back into convulsions and minor hysterics.’
    • ‘I admit unashamedly I'd like for this statement to be met with grand hysterics, someone to shriek out ‘DON'T DO IT!’’
    • ‘But his mission is complicated by Louis' quirks and emotional hysterics.’
    • ‘Sadly for Burnside, such hysterics are less impressive when introduced by a diarist who lacks the wit to spell check her ‘murmour’ ed offerings.’
    • ‘If I went to a crowded place I would go into hysterics because everyone's voices and emotions were pounding inside my skull.’
    • ‘I'm prone to hysterics and don't think clearly.’
    • ‘Through it all, though, Utidjian is superb, capable of generating power not from volume or hysterics, but from the subtlest expression.’
    • ‘Then, with the camera still rolling, there was general hysterics and the question ‘Does Derek win the twenty pounds?’’
    • ‘Some ragas such as Darbari-kanhara, Khamaj and Pooriya are strongly recommended for defusing tension in mind, particularly in case of hysterics.’
    • ‘It would simply be helpful if the neighbours could resign themselves to an approximately similar exercise, with fewer tantrums and hysterics.’
    • ‘When frenzy and hysterics threaten, just keep telling yourself that smiling's a better facial aerobic than frowning.’
    • ‘She played a sullen nutcase prone to hysterics and evil giggles.’
    • ‘Lopez is completely inept when it comes to playing out the hysterics that this mellow-dramatic insipid thriller so often demands of her.’
    • ‘She got a second Oscar nod, as Best Supporting Actress, for her wildly funny hysterics in Allen's Husbands and Wives.’
    • ‘Again: why should I take these hysterics seriously?’
    • ‘And the young actress doesn't rely on hysterics and overacting (as others might) to convey Maria's desperation.’
    • ‘Heck, we even had a great time at my brother's wedding - no hysterics or drama (well, there was behind the scenes, but more on that later).’
    • ‘But then I recalled our parking lot hysterics of this weekend and my angry words to him about how he can't be bothered to read my writing.’
    • ‘And you know intellects are most prone to emotional distress, as proven by your own hysterics.’
    hysteria, wildness, feverishness, irrationality, frenzy, loss of control, loss of reason
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1 Uncontrollable laughter.
      ‘this started them both giggling and they fled upstairs in hysterics’
      • ‘He was a real wind up merchant with a wicked sense of humour - he had everyone in hysterics and he will be very sadly missed.’
      • ‘Marty and his gang had gone into hysterics at her slight tantrum.’
      • ‘Candace doubled up with laughter and lay on the floor in hysterics, still in control of the beam.’
      • ‘DJ and Michael go into fits of hysterics, rolling around on the floor.’
      • ‘Perhaps the worst thing about this show was not the acts themselves, but the fact that the audience was in hysterics.’
      • ‘The audience was in hysterics and applauding their heads off and I think they were on their feet, which was rare back then.’
      • ‘Ollie falls backwards in hysterics onto the bed and promptly falls off, stepping right onto his laptop which had been left open on the floor.’
      • ‘And then all the male guests returned to the stage, each of them bare-chested too, as the audience went into hysterics.’
      • ‘Or maybe they're all quietly doubled up in hysterics behind me.’
      • ‘I'm in hysterics right now over the useful British phrases.’
      • ‘Like a woman loosing all sanity, I began to laugh in hysterics.’
      • ‘But eventually it made it to Canada, where my teenaged friends and I would watch it in total hysterics after school.’
      • ‘As we passed it around, reading aloud, we were in hysterics.’
      • ‘Kayla laughed in hysterics as her skates slid up under her and she landed on her bottom.’
      • ‘I was literally rolling on the floor in hysterics.’
      • ‘For some reason, that put me and my friends Dan and Ali in hysterics.’
      • ‘I was in hysterics of course, and as a joke I said the temperature the next day would probably be six degrees across the nation.’
      • ‘I was laughing in hysterics, yet utterly disgusted!’
      • ‘His emotions took hold and he burst into hysterics, warranting a quick response from the Takavaran commander.’
      • ‘GW's facial expressions had us in constant hysterics and the quote of the night had to have been calling the terrorists ‘haters’.’
      fits of laughter, gales of laughter, peals of laughter, uncontrollable laughter, convulsions, fits, guffawing, howling
      View synonyms
  • 2A person suffering from hysteria.

    • ‘But is this an essential and important difference between the hysteric and the artist?’
    • ‘Because hysteria has no organic causes, the hysteric imitates the lesions of other illnesses.’
    • ‘Spontaneous outbursts, to his mind, are for fools, hysterics and chat show guests.’
    • ‘A hysteric who seems paraplegic behaves as if he has forgotten that he has legs; he has lost the mental representation of a part of his body.’
    • ‘According to Renata Salecl, the male hysteric asks, ‘What kind of mask am I wearing… Am I a man or a woman?’’
    • ‘Going into that conversation I tended to view all the big pushers of regime change as warmongers, hysterics or trouble-makers.’
    • ‘A lot of people accused him of being a hysteric, a hypochondriac, a man who exploited death, kind of a Cassandra.’
    • ‘These are stagy comic types: the critic, the fop, and the hysteric.’
    • ‘As a hysteric, she highlights the insights that psychoanalysis can offer - and its shortcomings - in understanding black female subjectivity.’
    • ‘Brother Egbert responded in the calm, patient tone of someone addressing a hysteric.’
    • ‘Thank goodness there aren't any hysterics around here.’
    • ‘The Dialogues concern a young noblewoman, Blanche de la Force, an hysteric afraid of just about everything.’
    • ‘While some German critics decry her as an eloquent hysteric, others praise her cold yet incisive observations of human lives and loves.’
    • ‘Mabel, who could easily have been turned into a hysteric, is handled sympathetically.’
    • ‘For these reasons, she is an incurable hysteric.’
    • ‘Who do these hysterics think they are persuading?’
    • ‘By Christensen's era, religion gave way to science, and a new form of otherness evolved: the female hysteric.’
    • ‘‘You do not have cancer,’ he said, as if counselling an hysteric.’
    • ‘This goal is achieved in the film's narrative by transforming Billie Holiday into a hysteric.’
    • ‘As a hysteric, Beloved mimics dominant ideas about madness as well as orthodox definitions of gender and race.’

adjective

  • another term for hysterical (sense 2)
    • ‘Kal's eyes widened as he came to a pause before bursting into a series of hysteric laughter.’
    • ‘Amid the piercing screams and almost hysteric laughter Chris escaped to quietly phone his wife.’
    • ‘He said with a sly grin as Emerald busted out into hysteric laughter.’
    • ‘He heard Sora's mocking, hysteric laughter in his ear.’

Origin

Mid 17th century (as an adjective): via Latin from Greek husterikos ‘of the womb’, from hustera ‘womb’ (hysteria being thought to be specific to women and associated with the womb).

Pronunciation

hysteric

/həˈsterik//həˈstɛrɪk/