adjective, mad·der, mad·dest.
- abnormally furious; ferocious: a mad bull.
- affected with rabies; rabid: a mad dog.
verb (used with object), mad·ded, mad·ding.
verb (used without object), mad·ded, mad·ding.
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Idioms for mad
Origin of mad
SYNONYMS FOR 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
Words nearby mad
British Dictionary definitions for mad as a hatter (1 of 2)
n acronym for US
British Dictionary definitions for mad as a hatter (2 of 2)
adjective madder or maddest
- unusually ferociousa mad buffalo
- afflicted with rabies
verb mads, madding or madded
Derived forms of madmaddish, adjective
Word Origin for mad
Medical definitions for mad as a hatter
Idioms and Phrases with mad as a hatter (1 of 2)
Also, mad as a March hare. Crazy, demented, as in She is throwing out all his clothes; she's mad as a hatter. This expression, dating from the early 1800s, alludes to exposure to the chemicals formerly used in making felt hats, which caused tremors and other nervous symptoms. The variant, dating from the 14th century, alludes to the crazy behavior of hares during rutting season, mistakenly thought to be only in March.
Idioms and Phrases with mad as a hatter (2 of 2)
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