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[ir-i-tuh-bil-i-tee] /ˌɪr ɪ təˈbɪl ɪ ti/
noun, plural irritabilities.
the quality or state of being irritable.
Physiology, Biology. the ability to be excited to a characteristic action or function by the application of some stimulus:
Protoplasm displays irritability by responding to heat.
Origin of irritability
From the Latin word irrītābilitās, dating back to 1745-55. See irritable, -ity
Related forms
nonirritability, noun
superirritability, noun Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for irritability
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • His eccentricity was a combination of absent-mindedness and irritability.

  • The work of vegetation begins first in the irritability of the bark and leaf-buds.

    Essays, First Series Ralph Waldo Emerson
  • It was impressive riding to those who knew the filly's irritability, uncertainty.

    Garrison's Finish W. B. M. Ferguson
  • The irritability of the one active cell subsided, that of the others was aroused.

    The Paliser case Edgar Saltus
  • Did you notice any symptoms of mental disturbance or irritability about him at any time?

    The Shrieking Pit Arthur J. Rees
Word Origin and History for irritability

1755, from irritable + -ity.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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irritability in Medicine

irritability ir·ri·ta·bil·i·ty (ĭr'ĭ-tə-bĭl'ĭ-tē)

  1. The capacity to respond to stimuli.

  2. Abnormal or excessive sensitivity to stimuli of an organism, organ, or body part.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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