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1520s, from Latin anxietatem (nominative anxietas) "anguish, anxiety, solicitude," noun of quality from anxius (see anxious). Psychiatric use dates to 1904. Age of Anxiety is from Auden's poem (1947). For "anxiety, distress," Old English had angsumnes, Middle English anxumnesse.
anxiety anx·i·e·ty (āng-zī'ĭ-tē)
A state of uneasiness and apprehension, as about future uncertainties.
A cause of anxiety.
A state of intense apprehension, uncertainty, and fear resulting from the anticipation of a threatening event or situation, often to a degree that normal physical and psychological functioning is disrupted.
Eager, often agitated desire.
Emotional distress, especially that brought on by fear of failure. (See also angst.)