jitters, the n.
1. extreme nervousness, a state of emotional and often physical tension, agitation.
|Dawn Ginsbergh’s Revenge 84: Applebaum retorted that the mere mention of Harvard gave him the starboard jitters.|
|Coll. Stories (1990) 293: This suspense was giving him the jitters.‘His Last Day’ in|
|Courtship of Uncle Henry 26: Gave us the jitters hiding behind the sheets just like he had been hit over the head.|
|Really the Blues 183 I even made myself lose that Woodmansten Inn job [...] but still the jitters wouldn’t quit me.|
|Jennings’ Diary 135: You’re giving me the jitters – talking like a chronic old misery.|
|Real Bohemia 64: Vicious cycles get started: Seconals to go to sleep with, Dexedrines to wake up with, and alcohol during the day for the jitters.|
|Start in Life (1979) 325: There’d been a terrible rash of early marriages at work among the nineteen-year-olds, and I sometimes got the liver-jitters at Claudine’s seriousness.|
|Memphis-Nam-Sweden 132: You’re the one who’s got the jitters.|
|Rum, Bum and Concertina (1978) 68: I had the mild jitters.|
|Dark Spectre (1996) 18: This gave the car salesmen the jitters. If the house got busted their careers would be over.|
|Turning (2005) 75: He told himself it was the rain that kept him at bay but in truth he had the jitters.‘Small Mercies’ in|
2. (US) a hangover, delirium tremens.
|‘A Nose for News’ in Goulart (1967) 215: The way the furniture looks when you wake up with the jitters and a bad hangover.|
|Heart is a Lonely Hunter (1986) 26: ‘The jitters –’ he said.|