Insanity
Insanity In*san"i*ty, n. [L. insanitas unsoundness; cf. insania insanity, F. insanite.] 1. The state of being insane; unsoundness or derangement of mind; madness; lunacy. [1913 Webster]

All power of fancy over reason is a degree of insanity. --Johnson. [1913 Webster]

Without grace The heart's insanity admits no cure. --Cowper. [1913 Webster]

2. (Law) Such a mental condition, as, either from the existence of delusions, or from incapacity to distinguish between right and wrong, with regard to any matter under action, does away with individual responsibility.

Syn: {Insanity}, {Lunacy}, {Madness}, {Derangement}, {Alienation}, {Aberration}, {Mania}, {Delirium}, {Frenzy}, {Monomania}, {Dementia}.

Usage: Insanity is the generic term for all such diseases; lunacy has now an equal extent of meaning, though once used to denote periodical insanity; madness has the same extent, though originally referring to the rage created by the disease; derangement, alienation, are popular terms for insanity; delirium, mania, and frenzy denote excited states of the disease; dementia denotes the loss of mental power by this means; monomania is insanity upon a single subject. [1913 Webster]


The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Insanity — • The dividing line between sanity and insanity, like the line that distinguishes a man of average height from a tall man, can be described only in terms of a moral estimate Catholic Encyclopedia. Kevin Knight. 2006. Insanity     Insanity …   Catholic encyclopedia

  • insanity — in·san·i·ty n 1: unsoundness of mind or lack of the ability to understand that prevents one from having the mental capacity required by law to enter into a particular relationship, status, or transaction or that releases one from criminal or… …   Law dictionary

  • insanity — insanity, lunacy, psychosis, mania, dementia are the leading general terms denoting serious mental disorder. Insanity as a technical term belongs to law rather than to medicine. It is used to cover a wide variety of mental disorders, all of which …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • insanity — [in san′ə tē] n. pl. insanities [L insanitas < insanus] 1. the state of being insane; mental illness or derangement, usually excluding amentia: not a technical term 2. Law any form or degree of mental derangement or unsoundness of mind,… …   English World dictionary

  • insanity — 1580s, state of being insane, from L. insanitatem (nom. insanitas) unhealthfulness, noun of quality from insanus (see INSANE (Cf. insane)). Meaning extreme folly is from 1844 …   Etymology dictionary

  • insanity — [n] mental illness; foolishness aberration, absurdity, alienation, craziness, delirium, delusion, dementia, derangement, distraction, dotage, folly, frenzy, hallucination, hysteria, illusion, inanity, irrationality, irresponsibility, lunacy,… …   New thesaurus

  • insanity — 1. (insanity) (578↑, 71↓) Doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result. Working a job and expecting to get rich is insanity. Author: 513 http://insanity.urbanup.com/238533 2. (insanity) (451↑, 62↓) doing something over and… …   Urban English dictionary

  • Insanity — For other uses, see Insanity (disambiguation). Insane redirects here. For other uses, see Insane (disambiguation). Engraving of the eighth p …   Wikipedia

  • insanity — The term is a social and legal term rather than a medical one, and indicates a condition which renders the affected person unfit to enjoy liberty of action because of the unreliability of his behavior with concomitant danger to himself and others …   Black's law dictionary

  • insanity — The term is a social and legal term rather than a medical one, and indicates a condition which renders the affected person unfit to enjoy liberty of action because of the unreliability of his behavior with concomitant danger to himself and others …   Black's law dictionary

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