Definition of nervous in English:

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nervous

Pronunciation: /ˈnərvəs/

adjective

1Easily agitated or alarmed; tending to be anxious; highly strung: a sensitive, nervous person these quick, nervous birds
More example sentences
  • In addition his is always jittery, nervous and panicky, always worried, always tense, never able to relax.
  • Poppy's nervous, as there's no horror in it, and precious little angst.
  • I consider myself to be a strong person and really do feel for those who are of a nervous disposition anyway as this is terrifying enough.
Synonyms
high-strung, anxious, edgy, tense, excitable, jumpy, skittish, brittle, neurotic;
timid, mousy, shy, fearful
1.1Anxious or apprehensive: staying in the house on her own made her nervous I was nervous about my new job
More example sentences
  • We were pretty stressed and nervous about taking Arthur after the horrible accident of last weekend.
  • The days are gone when I am going to get nervous about games or worry about whether or not I play well.
  • I was, as ever, tense and nervous about the whole thing but I found it quite interesting and nicely handled.
Synonyms
anxious, worried, apprehensive, on edge, edgy, tense, stressed, agitated, uneasy, restless, worked up, keyed up, overwrought, jumpy;
fearful, frightened, scared, shaky, in a cold sweat, gun-shy
informal with butterflies in one's stomach, trepidatious, jittery, twitchy, in a state, uptight, wired, in a flap, het up, strung out, having kittens
1.2(Of a feeling or reaction) resulting from anxiety or anticipation: nervous energy
More example sentences
  • It is an excited nervous feeling though, full of expectation and anticipation.
  • The thought of his blind date gives him a rush of anticipatory nervous excitement.
  • I commented on this and was told the rashes were a nervous reaction to low-flying jets and explosions.
2Relating to or affecting the nerves: a nervous disorder
More example sentences
  • One might imagine that nervous tissue consists of nerve cells and very little else.
  • Too ill to work and plagued by nervous disorders, these victims have almost given up on life.
  • He also said the woman's case history files showed she had been treated for nervous disorders.
Synonyms
neurological, neural

Origin

Late Middle English (in the senses 'containing nerves' and 'relating to the nerves'): from Latin nervosus 'sinewy, vigorous', from nervus 'sinew' (see nerve). sense 1 dates from the mid 18th century.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: nerv·ous

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