W3S3 [ˈnə:vəs US ˈnə:r-] adj
1.) worried or frightened about something, and unable to relax
→↑anxious nervous about
She was so nervous about her exams that she couldn't sleep.
I wish you'd stop looking at me like that. You're making me nervous .
feel/get nervous
Paul always gets nervous whenever he has to give a presentation.
nervous smile/laugh/look/glance
'Don't be silly,' she said with a nervous laugh. 'There's no such thing as ghosts.'
By the time I got into the interview I was a nervous wreck (=was extremely nervous) .
nervous of
We were all a bit nervous of him at first (=frightened of him) .
2.) often becoming worried or frightened, and easily upset
She's a nervous, sensitive child.
The film is unsuitable for people of a nervous disposition (=who are easily frightened) .
3.) [only before noun]
related to the nerves in your body
nervous condition/illness/disorder
She was suffering from a nervous condition.
He had a nervous twitch (=his body made small, uncontrolled movements) .
4.) nervous exhaustion/strain
a mental condition in which you feel very tired, usually caused by working too hard or by a difficult emotional problem
>nervously adv
She smiled nervously.
>nervousness n [U]
Mike's nervousness showed in his voice.
WORD CHOICE: nervous, anxious, annoyed, irritated
If you are nervous , you cannot relax because you are worried about something that you have to do : I was nervous about my job interview. | He sounded really nervous when he first started speaking.
If you are anxious , you are very worried about something that may happen or may have happened, over which you feel you have no control : When she didn't come home from school her parents began to get anxious.
Do not use nervous to talk about angry feelings. Use annoyed or irritated.
If you are annoyed , you feel slightly angry with someone because of what they have done : I was annoyed that he kept me waiting.
If you are irritated , you are made slightly angry by something that keeps happening : Irritated by their giggling, he told them to be quiet.
!! If someone is irritating you, you can say that they get on your nerves (NOT 'on your nervous') : His fidgeting is getting on my nerves.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

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