from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. A foolish or eccentric person.
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. One who is cracked or impaired intellectually; a crazy fellow.
Sorry, no etymologies found.
True, Esther had bashed him with a cook pot, but one great advantage in having a peckerwood crackbrain on your side was the fact that his motivations had nothing to do with rationality.
Whether it was some crackbrain scribbler who tried to prove Poe
Such a crackbrain as thou art, I never saw the like to it.
No doubt it is a sad thing for a man to part with his self-control, but I happen to hold a brief for the crackbrain, and I say that there is not any man living who can afford to be too contemptuous, for no one knows when his turn may come to make a disastrous slip.
I envy those stolid people who can talk so contemptuously of frailty -- I mean I envy them their self-mastery; I quite understand the temperament of those who can be content with a slight exhilaration, and who fiercely contemn the crackbrain who does not know when to stop.
Because I’m going to prove I’m the biggest crackbrain of all, if it’s the last thing I do.
To be sure, I would tell him how kindly I had myself been used upon that dry land he was so much afraid of, and how well fed and carefully taught both by my friends and my parents: and if he had been recently hurt, he would weep bitterly and swear to run away; but if he was in his usual crackbrain humour, or (still more) if he had had a glass of spirits in the roundhouse, he would deride the notion.
The good Henry Fullerton had long walked in darkness; doubts had been presented to him; jibes and sneers had hailed upon him; all sorts of mean detractors had tried to label him as visionary, or crackbrain, or humbug, or even as money-grub: and now the clouds that obscured the wild path along which he had fared with such forlorn courage were all lifted away, and he saw the fulfilment of the visions which had tantalized him on doleful nights, when effort seemed vain and hope dead.
Every crackbrain, every seditious scribbler, all the agitators were elected ... very few enlightened or prudent men, and still fewer of the nobles, were chosen. "
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