drapetomania

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English[edit]

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Etymology[edit]

Coined in 1851 by Samuel A. Cartwright as a mental illness that caused black slaves to flee captivity. Ancient Greek δραπέτης ‎(drapétēs, runaway slave) + μανία ‎(manía, madness).

Noun[edit]

drapetomania ‎(uncountable)

  1. (dated) an overwhelming urge to run away (from home, a bad situation, responsibility, etc.)

Usage notes[edit]