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or nerve-wracking

[nurv-rak-ing] /ˈnɜrvˌræk ɪŋ/
extremely irritating, annoying, or trying:
a nerve-racking day; a nerve-racking noise.
Origin of nerve-racking
1805-15 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for nerve-wracking
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Coming up, straight up a hundred and twenty-five feet, had been nerve-wracking.

    Hour of Enchantment Roy J. Snell
  • "You're a nerve-wracking woman, Lyad," Belchik said unhappily.

    Legacy James H Schmitz
  • To Greg Hunter the siege of the orbit-ship had been a nerve-wracking game of listening and waiting for something to happen.

    Gold in the Sky Alan Edward Nourse
  • But Janet preferred not to listen to the wind; it was too mournful, too nerve-wracking.

    Janet Hardy in Hollywood Ruthe S. Wheeler
  • With the knowledge that what one sees, one hits, it is a nerve-wracking experience.

  • He'd taken on the lonely, nerve-wracking job of service station attendant just to see what it offered.

    Acid Bath Vaseleos Garson
  • Suddenly a nerve-wracking, ear-piercing vibration filled the room.

    A Son of the City Herman Gastrell Seely
  • It was a night of agony by thirst, of nerve-wracking bomb explosions, and of bayonet jabs in the dark.

    New Zealanders at Gallipoli Major Fred Waite
British Dictionary definitions for nerve-wracking


very distressing, exhausting, or harrowing
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for nerve-wracking

also nervewracking, 1867, from nerve + present participle of wrack (v.).



also nerveracking, 1812, from nerve + present participle of verbal sense of rack (n.1).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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