Definitions for Panicˈpæn ɪk

This page provides all possible meanings and translations of the word Panic

Random House Webster's College Dictionary

pan•icˈpæn ɪk(n.; adj.; v.)-icked, -ick•ing.

  1. (n.)a sudden overwhelming fear that produces hysterical behavior and that can spread quickly through a crowd.

    Category: Psychiatry

  2. an instance, outbreak, or period of such fear.

    Category: Psychiatry

  3. an anxiety disorder characterized by feelings of impending doom and physical symptoms such as trembling and hyperventilation.

    Category: Psychiatry

  4. a sudden widespread fear that the economy is faltering, causing stock values to fall and some banks to fail, as investments and savings are hastily withdrawn.

    Category: Business

  5. Informal. someone or something that is considered hilariously funny.

    Category: Status (usage)

  6. (adj.)of the nature of, caused by, or indicating panic:

    panic selling of stocks.

  7. (cap.) of or pertaining to the god Pan.

  8. (v.t.)to affect with panic.

  9. Informal. to keep (an audience or the like) highly amused.

    Category: Status (usage)

  10. (v.i.)to be stricken with panic; become frantic with fear.

Origin of panic:

1595–1605; earlier panique < F < Gk Panikós of Pan ; see -ic


pan•icˈpæn ɪk(n.)

  1. any grass of the genus Panicum, many species of which bear edible grain.

    Category: Plants

Origin of panic:

1375–1425; late ME < L pānicum a kind of millet

Princeton's WordNet

  1. panic, terror, affright(noun)

    an overwhelming feeling of fear and anxiety

  2. panic, scare(verb)

    sudden mass fear and anxiety over anticipated events

    "panic in the stock market"; "a war scare"; "a bomb scare led them to evacuate the building"

  3. panic(verb)

    be overcome by a sudden fear

    "The students panicked when told that final exams were less than a week away"

  4. panic(verb)

    cause sudden fear in or fill with sudden panic

    "The mere thought of an isolation cell panicked the prisoners"

Kernerman English Learner's Dictionary

  1. panic(noun)ˈpæn ɪk

    ≠ calm

    There was widespread panic in the area around the explosion.; I got in a panic about all the work I had to do.

  2. panic(verb)ˈpæn ɪk

    to be too frightened to think clearly, or to cause sb to do this

    Don't panic - everyone stay calm.; Any sudden moves will panic the animals.


  1. panic(Noun)

    Overpowering fright, often affecting groups of people or animals.

  2. panic(Noun)

    Rapid reduction in asset prices due to broad efforts to raise cash in anticipation of continuing decline in asset prices.

  3. panic(Verb)

    To feel overwhelming fear.

  4. panic(Adjective)

    Pertaining to the god Pan.

  5. panic(Adjective)

    Of fear, fright etc: sudden or overwhelming (attributed by the ancient Greeks to the influence of Pan).

  6. Panic(Adjective)


  7. Origin: From panique, from πανικός. Pan is the god of woods and fields who was the source of mysterious sounds that caused contagious, groundless fear in herds and crowds, or in people in lonely spots.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Panic(noun)

    a plant of the genus Panicum; panic grass; also, the edible grain of some species of panic grass

  2. Panic(adj)

    extreme or sudden and causeless; unreasonable; -- said of fear or fright; as, panic fear, terror, alarm

  3. Panic(adj)

    a sudden, overpowering fright; esp., a sudden and groundless fright; terror inspired by a trifling cause or a misapprehension of danger; as, the troops were seized with a panic; they fled in a panic

  4. Panic(adj)

    by extension: A sudden widespread fright or apprehension concerning financial affairs


  1. Panic

    Panic is a sudden sensation of fear which is so strong as to dominate or prevent reason and logical thinking, replacing it with overwhelming feelings of anxiety and frantic agitation consistent with an animalistic fight-or-flight reaction. Panic may occur singularly in individuals or manifest suddenly in large groups as mass panic. The word panic derives from the Greek πανικός, "pertaining to shepherd god Pan", who took amusement from frightening herds of goats and sheep into sudden bursts of uncontrollable fear. The ancient Greeks credited the battle of Marathon's victory to Pan, using his name for the frenzied, frantic fear exhibited by the fleeing enemy soldiers. Prehistoric men used mass panic as a technique when hunting animals, especially ruminants. Herds reacting to unusually strong sounds or unfamiliar visual effects were directed towards cliffs, where they eventually jumped to their deaths when cornered. Humans are also vulnerable to panic and it is often considered infectious, in the sense one person's panic may easily spread to other people nearby and soon the entire group acts irrationally, but people also have the ability to prevent and/or control their own and others' panic by disciplined thinking or training. Architects and city planners try to accommodate the symptoms of panic, such as herd behavior, during design and planning, often using simulations to determine the best way to lead people to a safe exit and prevent congestion. The most effective methods are often non-intuitive. A tall column, approximately 1 ft in diameter, placed in front of the door exit at a precisely calculated distance, may speed up the evacuation of a large room by up to 30%, as the obstacle divides the congestion well ahead of the choke point.

U.S. National Library of Medicine

  1. Panic

    A state of extreme acute, intense anxiety and unreasoning fear accompanied by disorganization of personality function.

British National Corpus

  1. Nouns Frequency

    Rank popularity for the word 'Panic' in Nouns Frequency: #2025

Translations for Panic

Kernerman English Multilingual Dictionary


(a) sudden great fear, especially that spreads through a crowd etc

The fire caused a panic in the city.

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