Definition of maniacal in US English:



  • 1Exhibiting extremely wild or violent behavior.

    ‘a maniacal dictator’
    ‘John burst into maniacal laughter’
    • ‘The entire perfectly edited sequence is like a dream, or a maniacal live-action cartoon.’
    • ‘They now have a platform to voice their social and political views coupled with catchy, playful, and borderline maniacal music.’
    • ‘They do have some chemistry, but the real issue is this maniacal boyfriend.’
    • ‘He was the film's almost maniacal drill instructor.’
    • ‘I worked hard to portray him as less maniacal than he actually is.’
    • ‘They both get to play like mysterious, maniacal pixies.’
    • ‘It's hard to be scared of a maniacal puppet.’
    • ‘I heard his maniacal giggle across the house, together with the wails of his baby.’
    • ‘The other characters are all maniacal, annoying, or plot devices.’
    • ‘He just so happened to be involved in a local camera club when he runs into the maniacal miss.’
    1. 1.1informal Exhibiting or denoting obsessive enthusiasm.
      ‘his maniacal obsession with conspiracy theories’
      • ‘According to his critics, the artist had sacrificed everything to his maniacal desire to show off his drawing.’
      • ‘His privacy is his most treasured possession, an obsession that borders on maniacal.’
      • ‘He bleats out disjointed, love-affirming clichés like "I'll always be here for you!" with an almost maniacal energy, regardless of context.’
      • ‘It is obvious that certain outstanding facts about her early life cast her relentlessly maniacal analyses of interpersonal relationships into a much different light.’
      • ‘His maniacal obsession with work, and the contained fury of his working methods, are beautifully conveyed.’
      • ‘I enjoy the excess of precision, a kind of maniacal exactitude of language, a descriptive madness.’
      • ‘With a single-mindedness that borders on the maniacal, the substitute decides to get to the city somehow and bring the boy back.’
      • ‘They found themselves confronting a sterility in literature, with its maniacal emphasis on form, which rhymed with progress and the accelerating emphasis on technology.’
      • ‘The players complement each other's maniacal energy with genuine communication and empathy.’
      • ‘He has a self-proclaimed maniacal commitment to organic foods.’
    2. 1.2Psychiatry archaic Suffering from mania.
      ‘maniacal patients’
      • ‘The nature of the maniacal attacks varies with the period at which they occur.’
      • ‘In typical mania, this is commonly observed, from one to three months prior to the maniacal explosion.’
      • ‘The patient may be very irritable, have delusions and hallucinations, and sometimes become maniacal.’
      • ‘Maniacal excitement may be found in a number of psychoses.’
      • ‘Partial recoveries are also noted, where the patient ceases to be maniacal but exhibits an undue excitability.’