Asperger syndrome

[ as-per-ger ]
/ ˈæs pər gər /

noun Psychiatry.

a developmental disorder characterized by severely impaired social skills, repetitive behaviors, and often, a narrow set of interests, but not involving delayed development of linguistic and cognitive abilities: now considered one of the autism spectrum disorders.

Also As·per·ger's syn·drome [as-per-gerz] /ˈæs pər gərz/.

Origin of Asperger syndrome

named after Hans Asperger, 1906–80, Austrian pediatrician, who described it in 1944

Also called As·per·ger's, Asperger's disorder. Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

British Dictionary definitions for asperger's syndrome

Asperger's syndrome

/ (ˈæspɜːɡəz) /


a form of autism in which the person affected has limited but obsessive interests, and has difficulty relating to other people

Word Origin for Asperger's syndrome

C20: after Hans Asperger (20th century), Austrian physician who first described it

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 asperger's syndrome

Asperger's Syndrome

1981, in reference to Austrian pediatrician Hans Asperger (1906-1980), who described it in 1944 (and called it autistic psychopathy; German autistischen psychopathen). A standard diagnosis since 1992; recognition of Asperger's work was delayed, perhaps, because his school and much of his early research was destroyed by Allied bombing in 1944.

The example of autism shows particularly well how even abnormal personalities can be capable of development and adjustment. Possibilities of social integration which one would never have dremt of may arise in the course of development. [Hans Asperger, "Autistic psychopathy in Childhood," 1944]
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for asperger's syndrome

Asperger's syndrome

[ ăspər-gərz ]


A pervasive developmental disorder, usually of childhood, characterized by impairments in social interactions and repetitive behavior patterns.

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

Science definitions for asperger's syndrome

Asperger's syndrome

[ ăspər-gərz ]

A developmental disorder characterized by impairment in social interactions and repetitive behavior patterns. It is named after its identifier, Austrian psychiatrist Hans Asperger (1906-1980).
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.