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From Old French discrasie, from Medieval Latin dyscrāsia, from Ancient Greek δυσκρασία (duskrasía, bad temperament), from δυσ- (dus-, dys-) + κρᾶσις (krâsis, mixing”, “tempering).[1]



dyscrasy (countable and uncountable, plural dyscrasies)

  1. (countable, literally) A bodily disorder; an imbalance of the humours
    Synonym: distemper
  2. (uncountable, figuratively) Disharmony
    Synonyms: discord, disorder, dissonance


  • 1829, John Mason Good, The study of medicine, page 413:
    But such a practice must not be attempted indiscriminately, and should indeed be used with great caution : for it has fallen to the author’s lot to know of not a few instances, in which the constitution has been so completely broken down by the very onset of this energetic plan, as to require, not two or three weeks, but many months, before the patient was re-enabled to take his station in society; to say nothing of the virulence which has been added to all the symptoms of the case, whether primary or secondary, in dyscrasies or idiosyncrasies which are hostile to the use of mercury.
  • 1885, Homer Irvin Ostrom, A Treatise on the Breast, and Its Surgical Diseases (second edition; A.L. Chatterton & Co.), page 92:
    Have we not here the source from which dyscrasies spring?


Related termsEdit


  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 dyscrasy, n.” listed in the Oxford English Dictionary, second edition (1989)