[ roo-muh-tiz-uhm ]

  1. any disorder of the extremities or back, characterized by pain and stiffness.

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Origin of rheumatism

1595–1605; <Latin rheumatismus catarrh, rheum <Greek rheumatismós, equivalent to rheumat- (stem of rheûma;see rheum) + -ismos-ism

Words Nearby rheumatism

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use rheumatism in a sentence

  • Père Bracasse was ill, suffering from rheumatism, bronchitis, fever and corns.

  • (b) Acute infectious diseases, especially rheumatism and typhoid fever.

    A Manual of Clinical Diagnosis | James Campbell Todd
  • rheumatism was the one malady that sometimes affected mother Martha's health.

    Dorothy at Skyrie | Evelyn Raymond
  • I wish we were at home, and I was comfortably laid up in our damp garret, with a fine twinging fit of the rheumatism.

    The Battle of Hexham; | George Colman
  • When his infirmities began with rheumatism and bad digestion, she nursed him as if she had been his daughter.

    Skipper Worse | Alexander Lange Kielland

British Dictionary definitions for rheumatism


/ (ˈruːməˌtɪzəm) /

  1. any painful disorder of joints, muscles, or connective tissue: Compare arthritis, fibrositis

Origin of rheumatism

C17: from Latin rheumatismus catarrh, from Greek rheumatismos; see rheum

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