Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • adjective Of or relating to the nerves or nervous system.
  • adjective Stemming from or affecting the nerves or nervous system.
  • adjective Easily agitated or distressed; high-strung or jumpy.
  • adjective Marked by or having a feeling of unease or apprehension.
  • adjective Vigorous in style or feeling; spirited.
  • adjective Archaic Strong; sinewy.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • Full of nerves.
  • Sinewy; strong; vigorous; well-strung.
  • Possessing or manifesting vigor of mind; characterized by force or strength in sentiment or style: as, a nervous historian.
  • Of or pertaining to the nerves; seated in or affecting some part of the nervous system: as, a nervous disease; a nervous impulse; a nervous action.
  • Having the nerves affected; having weak ordiseased nerves; easily agitated or excited; weak; timid.
  • In botany, same as nerved.
  • Synonyms Forcible.
  • Timorous, excitable, high-strung.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • adjective Possessing nerve; sinewy; strong; vigorous.
  • adjective Possessing or manifesting vigor of mind; characterized by strength in sentiment or style; forcible; spirited.
  • adjective Of or pertaining to the nerves; seated in the nerves
  • adjective Having the nerves weak, diseased, or easily excited; subject to, or suffering from, undue excitement of the nerves; easily agitated or annoyed.
  • adjective Sensitive; excitable; timid.
  • adjective Apprehensive.
  • adjective (Med.) a low form of fever characterized by great disturbance of the nervous system, as evinced by delirium, or stupor, disordered sensibility, etc.
  • adjective (Anat.) the specialized coördinating apparatus which endows animals with sensation and volition. In vertebrates it is often divided into three systems: the central, brain and spinal cord; the peripheral, cranial and spinal nerves; and the sympathetic. See Brain, Nerve, Spinal cord, under Spinal, and Sympathetic system, under Sympathetic, and Illust. in Appendix.
  • adjective a condition of body characterized by a general predominance of mental manifestations.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • adjective Easily agitated or alarmed; on edge or edgy.
  • adjective Apprehensive, anxious, hesitant, worried.
  • adjective Relating to or affecting the nerves.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adjective easily agitated
  • adjective excited in anticipation
  • adjective of or relating to the nervous system
  • adjective unpredictably excitable (especially of horses)
  • adjective causing or fraught with or showing anxiety

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, sinewy, containing nerves, from Latin nervōsus, sinewy, from nervus, sinew; see nerve.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Latin nervōsus

Examples

  • It is hardly necessary to say that the functions of the nervous system are completely deranged, indeed, +nervous twitchings+ of the +eyelids+,

    Manhood Perfectly Restored Prof. Jean Civiale's Soluble Urethral Crayons as a Quick, Painless, and Certain Cure for Impotence, Etc.

  • I am growing nervous (how you will laugh!) -- but it is true, -- really, wretchedly, ridiculously, fine-ladically _nervous_.

    Life of Lord Byron, Vol. 2 (of 6) With His Letters and Journals

  • Actually, people don, t really know the meaning of the term nervous breakdown.

    On Healthy Living

  • The term nervous breakdown is not a medical term and is not listed as a psychiatric disorder in any medical text It is a publicly non-medically coined term used in common language and speech to indicate a highly stressed state of mind

    We Blog A Lot

  • The term nervous breakdown is not a medical term and is not listed as a psychiatric disorder in any medical text It is a publicly non-medically coined term used in common language and speech to indicate a highly stressed state of mind

    We Blog A Lot

  • PT, I don't know how low your exercise level went, but I've found that if I'm completely sedentary, I have a strong impulse towards what I call nervous eating-- it's very clear that I really want the stimulation rather than being hungry.

    Can Overweight Women Trust Their Doctors?

  • Less than two weeks after the convention, the running mate held a news conference, Eagleton denied any drinking problems, but did acknowledge he had been hospitalized three times for what he called nervous exhaustion and had received electroshock therapy.

    CNN Transcript Jun 10, 2008

  • In a brand-new interview posted on "TheDailyBeast. com," Jennifer is telling all about her suffering, what she calls a nervous breakdown, also why she would consider sending her twins to a Scientology school, and the real reason she sold pictures of the twins for a reported $6 million.

    CNN Transcript Oct 7, 2008

  • And I want to begin with what Jennifer Lopez a well-known celebrity profiler named Kevin Sessums about having what she called a nervous breakdown when she was shooting a movie back in 2002.

    CNN Transcript Oct 8, 2008

  • Christina, he would have believed my delicate condition was the reason for what he referred to as my nervous disposition.

    Castles and The Lion’s Lady

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