noun, plural allergies.
an abnormal reaction of the body to a previously encountered allergen introduced by inhalation, ingestion, injection, or skin contact, often manifested by itchy eyes, runny nose, wheezing, skin rash, or diarrhea.
hypersensitivity to the reintroduction of an allergen. Compare anaphylaxis.
Informal. a strong dislike or aversion, as toward a person or activity: He has an allergy to hard work.

1910–15; < Greek áll(os) other + -ergy < Greek -ergia, equivalent to érg(on) activity + -ia -y3 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
allergy (ˈælədʒɪ)
n , pl -gies
1.  a hypersensitivity to a substance that causes the body to react to any contact with that substance. Hay fever is an allergic reaction to pollen
2.  informal aversion: he has an allergy to studying
[C20: from German Allergie (indicating a changed reaction), from Greek allos other + ergon activity]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
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Word Origin & History

1911, from Ger. Allergie, coined 1906 by Clemens E. von Pirquet (1874-1929), Austrian pediatrician, from Gk. allos "other, different, strange" (from PIE *al- "beyond;" see alias) + ergon "activity" (see urge (v.)).
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Medical Dictionary

allergy al·ler·gy (āl'ər-jē)
An abnormally high acquired sensitivity to certain substances, such as drugs, pollens, or microorganisms, that may include such symptoms as sneezing, itching, and skin rashes.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
allergy   (āl'ər-jē)  Pronunciation Key 
An abnormally high immunologic sensitivity to certain stimuli such as drugs, foods, environmental irritants, microorganisms, or physical conditions, such as temperature extremes. These stimuli act as antigens, provoking an immunological response involving the release of inflammatory substances, such as histamine, in the body. Allergies may be innate or acquired in genetically predisposed individuals. Common symptoms include sneezing, itching, and skin rashes, though in some individuals symptoms can be severe. See also anaphylactic shock.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

allergy definition

A highly sensitive reaction of the body to certain substances, such as pollen, that are present in amounts that do not affect most people. Common indications of allergy include sneezing, skin rashes, itching, and runny nose.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
The field of food allergy has, in fact, become rife with controversy.
Never underestimate the power of a springtime allergy.
Cleaning your carpet with non-toxic solutions eases allergy and asthma symptoms.
Bears little or no pollen-a boon to allergy sufferers-and no fruit.
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