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4 definitions found
 for Insanity
From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48 :

  Insanity \In*san"i*ty\, n. [L. insanitas unsoundness; cf.
     insania insanity, F. insanite.]
     1. The state of being insane; unsoundness or derangement of
        mind; madness; lunacy.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              All power of fancy over reason is a degree of
              insanity.                             --Johnson.
        [1913 Webster]
  
              Without grace
              The heart's insanity admits no cure.  --Cowper.
        [1913 Webster]
  
     2. (Law) Such a mental condition, as, either from the
        existence of delusions, or from incapacity to distinguish
        between right and wrong, with regard to any matter under
        action, does away with individual responsibility.
  
     Syn: Insanity, Lunacy, Madness, Derangement,
          Alienation, Aberration, Mania, Delirium,
          Frenzy, Monomania, Dementia.
  
     Usage: Insanity is the generic term for all such diseases;
            lunacy has now an equal extent of meaning, though once
            used to denote periodical insanity; madness has the
            same extent, though originally referring to the rage
            created by the disease; derangement, alienation, are
            popular terms for insanity; delirium, mania, and
            frenzy denote excited states of the disease; dementia
            denotes the loss of mental power by this means;
            monomania is insanity upon a single subject.
            [1913 Webster]

From WordNet (r) 3.0 (2006) :

  insanity
      n 1: relatively permanent disorder of the mind [ant: saneness,
           sanity]

From Moby Thesaurus II by Grady Ward, 1.0 :

  116 Moby Thesaurus words for "insanity":
     aberration, absurdity, alienation, amentia, arrested development,
     asininity, backwardness, battiness, blithering idiocy,
     brain disease, brainlessness, buffoonery, clownishness, crack-up,
     crackpottedness, crankiness, craziness, cretinism, daffiness,
     delirium, delusion, dementia praecox, derangement, desipience,
     distraction, dotage, dottiness, eccentricity, emotional disorder,
     emotional instability, fatuity, fatuousness, folly, foolery,
     foolheadedness, foolishness, frenzy, frivolity, frivolousness,
     functional nervous disorder, giddiness, goofiness, half-wittedness,
     hallucination, hysteria, idiocy, idiotism, illusion, imbecility,
     impracticality, inanity, ineptitude, infantilism, insaneness,
     irrationality, irresponsibility, lunacy, madness, maladjustment,
     mania, manic-depressive psychosis, melancholia,
     mental defectiveness, mental deficiency, mental derangement,
     mental disorder, mental handicap, mental illness,
     mental retardation, mindlessness, mongolianism, mongolism,
     mongoloid idiocy, moronism, moronity, nervous breakdown,
     nervous disorder, neurosis, niaiserie, nonsense, nugacity,
     nuttiness, paranoia, personality disorder, preposterousness,
     problems in living, profound idiocy, psychoneurosis, psychopathy,
     psychosis, queerness, reaction, retardation, retardment, sappiness,
     schizophrenia, screwiness, senselessness, silliness,
     simple-wittedness, simplemindedness, simpleness, simplicity,
     social maladjustment, stupidity, subnormality, thoughtlessness,
     triflingness, triviality, unbalance, unreasonableness, wackiness,
     weirdness, witlessness, zaniness, zanyism
  
  

From Bouvier's Law Dictionary, Revised 6th Ed (1856) :

  INSANITY, med. jur. A continued impetuosity of thought, which, for the time 
  being, totally unfits a man for judging and acting in relation to the matter 
  in question, with the composure requisite for the maintenance of the social 
  relations of life. Various other definitions of this state have been given, 
  but perhaps the subject is not susceptible of any satisfactory definition, 
  which shall, with, precision, include all cases of insanity, and exclude all 
  others. Ray, Med. Jur. Sec. 24, p. 50. 
       2. It may be considered in a threefold point of view: 1. A chronic 
  disease, manifested by deviations from the healthy and natural state of the 
  mind, such deviations consisting in a morbid perversion of the feelings, 
  affections and habits. 2. Disturbances of the intellectual faculties, under 
  the influence of which the understanding becomes susceptible of 
  hallucinations or erroneous. impressions of a particular kind. 3. A state of 
  mental incoherence or constant hurry and confusion of thought. Cyclo. 
  Practical Medicine, h. t.; Brewster's Encyclopaedia, h. t.; Observations on 
  the Deranged Manifestations of the Mind, or Insanity, 71, 72; Merl. R‚pert. 
  mots Demenoe, Folie, Imbecilite; 6 Watts & Serg. 451. 
       3. The diseases included under the name of insanity have been arranged 
  under two divisions, founded on two very different conditions of the brain. 
  Ray, Med. Jur. ch. 1, Sec. 33. 
       4.-1. The want of, or a defective development of the faculties. 1st. 
  Idiocy, resulting from, 1. Congenital defect. 2. An obstacle to the 
  development of the faculties, supervening in infancy. 2d. Imbecility, 
  resulting from, 1. Congenital defects. 2. An obstacle to the development of 
  the faculties, supervening in infancy. 
       5.-2. The lesion of the faculties subsequent to their development. In 
  this division may be classed, 1st. Mania, which is, 1. Intellectual, and is 
  general or partial. 2. Affective and is general or, partial. 2d. Dementia, 
  which is, 1. Consecutive to mania, or injuries of the brain. 2. Senile, or 
  peculiar to old age. 
       6.-There is also a disease which has acquired the name of Moral 
  insanity. (q. v.) 
       7. Insanity is an excuse for the commission of acts which in others 
  would be crimes, because the insane man has no intention; it deprives a man 
  also from entering into any valid contract. Vide Lunacy; Non compos mentis, 
  and Stock on the Law of Non Compotes Mentis; 1 Hagg. Cons. R. 417; 3 Addams, 
  R. 90, 91, 180, 181; 3 Hagg. Eccl. R. 545, 598, 600; 2 Greenl. Ev. Sec. 369, 
  374; Bouv. Inst. Index, h. t. 
  
  

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