[kol-er-ik, kuh-ler-ik]


extremely irritable or easily angered; irascible: a choleric disposition.
  1. bilious.
  2. causing biliousness.

Origin of choleric

1300–50; Middle English colerik < Medieval Latin colericus bilious, Latin cholericus < Greek cholerikós. See cholera, -ic
Related formschol·er·i·cal·ly, chol·er·ic·ly, adverbchol·er·ic·ness, nounnon·chol·er·ic, adjectiveun·chol·er·ic, adjective

Synonyms for choleric

Antonyms for choleric Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for choleric

Contemporary Examples of choleric

Historical Examples of choleric

  • He is choleric, and a little matter doth set him in a flame, so old as he is.

    Micah Clarke

    Arthur Conan Doyle

  • The general disposition was choleric, pugnacious, litigious.

    Blood and Iron

    John Hubert Greusel

  • And as his temperament was choleric there were fellows who were actually afraid of him.

    The Shadow-Line

    Joseph Conrad

  • He was taken ashore (with choleric symptoms) and died there at the end of a week.

    The Shadow-Line

    Joseph Conrad

  • Choleric old gentlemen have been roused to frenzy over your misdeeds.

British Dictionary definitions for choleric



bilious or causing biliousness
Derived Formscholerically or cholericly, adverb
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 choleric

mid-14c., colrik, "bilious of temperament or complexion," from Old French colerique, from Late Latin cholericus, from Greek kholerikos (see choler). Meaning "easily angered, hot-tempered" is from 1580s (from the supposed effect of excess choler); that of "pertaining to cholera" is from 1834.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

Medicine definitions for choleric


[kŏlə-rĭk, kə-lĕrĭk]


Easily angered; bad-tempered.
Showing or expressing anger.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.