• synonyms


noun Psychiatry.
  1. an abnormal fear of being in crowds, public places, or open areas, sometimes accompanied by anxiety attacks.
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Origin of agoraphobia

First recorded in 1870–75; agora1 + -phobia
Can be confusedacrophobia agoraphobia claustrophobia
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for agoraphobia

Contemporary Examples of agoraphobia

Historical Examples of agoraphobia

  • Agoraphobia, for instance, is the fear of crossing an open place.

  • Glare-blindness, gravity-legs, and agoraphobia were excuses for a lot of things, when a man was just back from Big Bottomless.

    The Hoofer

    Walter M. Miller

  • The sufferer from agoraphobia cannot bring himself to cross alone an open field or square.

    Why Worry?

    George Lincoln Walton, M.D.

  • In the Moon's slight gravity, a man is really adjusted to existence when he has a well-developed case of agoraphobia.


    William Fitzgerald Jenkins

  • I put down her immunity to agoraphobia as just another evidence that she was already mad.

British Dictionary definitions for agoraphobia


  1. a pathological fear of being in public places, often resulting in the sufferer becoming housebound
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Derived Formsagoraphobic, adjective, noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for agoraphobia


"fear of open spaces," 1873, from German Agorophobie, coined 1871 by Berlin psychiatrist Carl Westphal (1833-1890) from Greek agora "open space" (see agora) + -phobia "fear." Related: Agoraphobe; agoraphobic.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

agoraphobia in Medicine


  1. Phobia of open or public places.
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Related formsag′o•ra•phobic adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.