freak-out

[freek-out]
Also, freakout.


Origin:
1965–70; noun use of verb phrase freak out

Dictionary.com Unabridged

freak

1 [freek]
noun
1.
any abnormal phenomenon or product or unusual object; anomaly; aberration.
2.
a person or animal on exhibition as an example of a strange deviation from nature; monster.
3.
a sudden and apparently causeless change or turn of events, the mind, etc.; an apparently capricious notion, occurrence, etc.: That kind of sudden storm is a freak.
4.
Numismatics. an imperfect coin, undetected at the mint and put into circulation.
5.
Philately. a stamp differing from others of the same printing because of creases, dirty engraving plates, etc. Compare error ( def 8 ), variety ( def 8 ).
6.
Slang.
a.
a person who has withdrawn from normal, rational behavior and activities to pursue one interest or obsession: a drug freak.
b.
a devoted fan or follower; enthusiast: a baseball freak.
c.
a hippie.
7.
Archaic. capriciousness; whimsicality.
adjective
8.
unusual; odd; irregular: a freak epidemic.
verb (used without object), verb (used with object)
9.
to become or make frightened, nervous, or wildly excited: The loud noise caused the horse to freak.
Verb phrases
10.
freak out, Slang.
a.
to enter into or cause a period of irrational behavior or emotional instability, as under the influence of a drug: to be freaked out on LSD.
b.
to lose or cause to lose emotional control from extreme excitement, shock, fear, joy, despair, etc.: Seeing the dead body freaked him out.

Origin:
1555–65; 1965–70 for def 6; perhaps akin to Old English frīcian to dance


3. vagary, quirk, crotchet.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Collins
World English Dictionary
freak1 (friːk)
 
n
1.  a person, animal, or plant that is abnormal or deformed; monstrosity
2.  a.  an object, event, etc, that is abnormal or extremely unusual
 b.  (as modifier): a freak storm
3.  a personal whim or caprice
4.  informal a person who acts or dresses in a markedly unconventional or strange way
5.  informal a person who is obsessed with something specified: a jazz freak
 
vb
6.  See freak out
 
[C16: of obscure origin]

freak2 (friːk)
 
n
1.  a fleck or streak of colour
 
vb
2.  (tr) to streak with colour; variegate
 
[C17: from earlier freaked, probably coined by Milton, based on streak1 + obsolete freckt freckled; see freckle]

freak out
 
vb
informal to be or cause to be in a heightened emotional state, such as that of fear, anger, or excitement

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
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Etymonline
Word Origin & History

freak
1560s, "sudden turn of mind," perhaps related to O.E. frician "to dance" (not recorded in M.E., but the word may have survived in dialect), or perhaps from M.E. frek "bold, quickly," from O.E. frec "greedy, gluttonous." Sense of "capricious notion" (1560s) and "unusual thing, fancy" (1784) preceded that
in freak of nature (1847). The sense in health freak, ecology freak, etc. is attested from 1908. The verb meaning "change, distort" goes back to 1911.

freak out
also freakout bad psychedelic drug trip or something comparable to one, 1966 (despite an amusing coincidental appearance of the phrase dug up by the OED for 1749), from verbal phrase freak out, attested from 1965 in the drug sense; see freak. Freak (n.) "drug user" is attested from 1945.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Idioms & Phrases

freak out

  1. Experience or cause to experience hallucinations, paranoia, or other frightening feelings as a result of taking a mind-altering drug. For example, They were freaking out on LSD or some other drug. [Slang; mid-1960s]

  2. Behave or cause to behave irrationally and uncontrollably, with enthusiasm, excitement, fear, or madness. For example, The band's wild playing made the audience freak out, or It was such a close accident, it really freaked me out, or She freaked out and ended up in the psychiatric ward. [Slang; 1960s] Also see flip one's lid; wig out.

The American Heritage® Dictionary of Idioms by Christine Ammer.
Copyright © 1997. Published by Houghton Mifflin.
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Example sentences
Be calm, don't get so hyped up that you tax an already effected and taxed
  respiratory system, ie freak out and hyperventilate.
But if that happens, the market might freak out a little.
It's also strange how they freak out about droughts here in the desert.
That, and people already freak out about living underneath power lines.
Idioms & Phrases
Synonyms
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