- abnormally furious; ferocious: a mad bull.
- affected with rabies; rabid: a mad dog.
OTHER WORDS FOR mad
Idioms about mad
Origin of mad
synonym study for mad
usage note for mad
historical usage of mad
The Old English forms are from the Germanic adjective gamaidaz “changed for the worse, abnormal.” The element maid- in gamaidaz is from Proto-Indo-European moi-, a variant of the root mei-, moi- “to change, exchange, go, move,” extended with a dental suffix ( -d in Germanic, -t elsewhere). The same suffixed variant moit- appears in Latin mūtāre “to change, exchange, give and receive in exchange.” Sicilian Greek (therefore likely to be influenced by Latin) has the noun moîtos “thanks, favor, reward,” which is possibly a borrowing from Old Latin moitus.
The progression of senses of mad starts with its original sense in Old English, “troubled in mind, demented.” The senses “rabid (dog),” “foolish or unwise,” and “overcome by desire or eagerness” are all recorded from around 1300. Mad in the sense “enraged, angry” arose after about 1400. This sense of mad is the usual colloquial term in the United States (the British are more likely to use angry ) and has been condemned by the arbiters of usage since the late-18th century. The sense “wildly lively, merry” is an Americanism, associated with jazz and African Americans, and dates to the early 1940s.
like mad (initially, for mad ) is quite old, from the 14th century. We take it today to mean “with great haste or energy,” but the original meaning was more literal: “in the manner of one who is mad.”
OTHER WORDS FROM mad
Other definitions for mad (2 of 3)
Other definitions for mad (3 of 3)
How to use mad in a sentence
When he has called the police in the past, they have not responded, or responded “mad late.”
From righteous fury to faux indignation, everything we got mad about in 2014—and how outrage has taken over our lives.
The house decays around Amelia and Samuel, their world narrows and becomes mad, undealable with.
We fight over their ownership and control, as if reality were a resource as scarce as the water and oil in Mad Max.
This year's shockers: no Amy Poehler, nothing for 'Mad Men,' and a whole lot of love for virgins and transgenders.15 Enraging Golden Globe TV Snubs and Surprises: Amy Poehler, 'Mad Men' & More|Kevin Fallon|December 11, 2014|DAILY BEAST
Then she won, and went half mad with the joy and excitement, but the joy didn't last long.Rosemary in Search of a Father|C. N. Williamson
Mankind, mad with the energy of activity, would be seen to pursue the fleeing phantom of insatiable desire.The Unsolved Riddle of Social Justice|Stephen Leacock
Irene's been down to the train to meet you three times and she's sure fighting mad by this time.The Homesteader|Oscar Micheaux
Your mad career generally ended in a crowd and a free fight of confetti.The Joyous Adventures of Aristide Pujol|William J. Locke
Some who would face a mad bull coolly enough spring with disgust from a cockroach or a centipede.Hunting the Lions|R.M. Ballantyne
British Dictionary definitions for mad (1 of 2)
- unusually ferociousa mad buffalo
- afflicted with rabies
Derived forms of madmaddish, adjective
Word Origin for mad
British Dictionary definitions for mad (2 of 2)
Other Idioms and Phrases with mad
In addition to the idioms beginning with mad
- mad about
- mad as a hatter
- mad as a hornet
- made for each other
- made of money
- made to measure
- made to order
- mad rush
- crazy (mad) about
- drive someone crazy (mad)
- hopping mad
- like crazy (mad)
- stark raving mad