English disease

From Wiktionary, the free dictionary
Jump to navigation Jump to search


English Wikipedia has an article on:


A calque of phrases from various languages, including the French maladie anglaise, Polish angielska choroba, German englische Krankheit, and the Russian англи́йская боле́знь (anglíjskaja boléznʹ).

Proper noun[edit]

the English disease

  1. Football (soccer) hooliganism.
  2. Depression (especially suicidal).
  3. Hypochondria.
  4. Sweating sickness.
  5. Gout.
  6. Rickets.
  7. Syphilis.
  8. Bronchitis.
  9. Tuberculosis.
  10. Laziness; low motivation.
  11. Poor industrial relations and the resulting economic weakness.
  12. Masochism, especially a fondness for flagellation.
  13. Gambling.
  14. Haemophilia.
  15. Homosexuality.

Usage notes[edit]

The meaning of the phrase the English disease, as with other similar terms such as the French disease and the Italian disease, depends heavily on the context and prejudices of the speaker. This is especially the case in the pejorative sense "syphilis", in which the nationality is essentially interchangeable depending on which country the speaker wishes to disparage.