[4] The Egyptians attributed the behavioral disturbances to a wandering uterus—thus later dubbing the condition hysteria. [17] His new theory claimed that his patients imagined the instances of sexual abuse, which were instead repressed childhood fantasies. If knowing the history of hysterical has got you reflecting on your word choices, this slideshow, “These Common Words Have Offensive Histories,” discusses many other words whose place in your vocab you may want to reconsider. [4], The ancient Greeks accepted the ancient Egyptians’ explanation for hysteria; however, they included in their definition of hysteria the inability to bear children or the failure to marry. Sander Gilman, Roy Porter, George Rousseau, Elaine Showalter, and Helen King (1993). Learn more. Compare hysteria. Informally, hysterical is also often used to refer to something “extremely funny.” Here are some other synonyms you can try: Looking for more synonyms for funny? [2] Many influential psychiatrists such as Sigmund Freud and Jean-Martin Charcot dedicated research to hysteria patients. What’s more, hysterical comes from the Greek word for “womb.” It was once thought that hysteria was a condition that only affected women—and was caused by disturbances in the uterus. Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012. irrational from fear, emotion, or an emotional shock. Using patients as props, Charcot executed dramatic public demonstrations of hysterical patients and his cures for hysteria, which many suggest produced the hysterical phenomenon[16]. Dictionary.com Unabridged characterized by cleverness or originality of invention or construction. General sense of "unhealthy emotion or excitement" is by 1839. Freud was also one of the first noted psychiatrist to attribute hysteria to men. For example, doctors put strong smelling substances on the patients’ vulvas to encourage the uterus to return to its p… We’ve got loads more at Thesaurus.com. [4], The word hysteria originates from the Greek word for uterus, hystera. [3] Theories for why hysteria diagnoses began to decline vary, but many historians infer that World War II, westernization, and migration shifted Western mental health expectations. Her hysterical caresses awakened him and the little fellow could not understand what ailed his mother. [18] The term hysterical, applied to an individual, can mean that they are emotional, irrationally upset, or frenzied. [19] When applied to a situation that does not involve panic, hysteria means that situation is uncontrollably amusing (the connotation being that it invokes hysterical laughter). when Egyptians recorded behavioral abnormalities in adult women on medical papyrus . Evolution of bodily distress disorders. [3] In addition, medical advancements explained ailments that were previously attributed to hysteria such as epilepsy or infertility. The third or fourth year represents the age limit, below which hysterical symptoms do not appear. Don't worry, we've got a great list of synonyms for you instead. [4] For example, doctors put strong smelling substances on the patients’ vulvas to encourage the uterus to return to its proper position. 1610s, "characteristic of hysteria," the nervous disease originally defined as a neurotic condition peculiar to women and thought to be caused by a dysfunction of the uterus; literally "of the womb," from Latin hystericus "of the womb," from Greek hysterikos "of the womb, suffering in the womb," from hystera "womb," from PIE *udtero-, variant of *udero- "abdomen, womb, stomach" (see uterus). [6] St. Augustine's writings suggested that human suffering resulted from sin, and thus, hysteria became perceived as satanic possession. Absentee Ballot vs. Mail-In Ballot: Is There A Difference? Before its classification as a mental disorder, hysteria was considered a physical ailment, first described medically in 1880 by Jean-Martin Charcot. [7] As doctors developed a greater understanding of the human nervous system, the neurological model of hysteria was created, which further propelled the conception of hysteria as a mental disorder. [6] Instead of admitting patients to a hospital, the church began treating patients through prayers, amulets, and exorcisms. [8] What Briquet described became known as Briquet's syndrome, or Somatization disorders, in 1971. [12][13][10], In the late nineteenth century, French neurologist Jean-Martin Charcot, attempted to tackle what he referred to as, "the great neurosis" or hysteria. [8] Following Briquet, Jean-Martin Charcot studied women in an asylum in France and used hypnosis as treatment. [3] Currently, most doctors practicing Western medicine do not accept hysteria as a medical diagnosis. Use the start of the new year as a chance to refresh your language by dropping problematic terms. [3] For example, from 1949 to 1978 annual admissions of hysteria patients in England and Wales decreased by roughly two thirds. … The Top 10 Nontraditional Christmas TV Episodes, Robin Williams, Hollywood’s Grand Jester, Is Dead at 63, The Hanging Judge of Minya, Egypt, Sentences Hundreds to Death, The Historical Nights Entertainment, Second Series. The word hysteria originates from the Greek word for “uterus,” hystera . The Egyptians attributed the behavioral disturbances to a wandering uterus—thus later dubbing the condition hysteria .