consternation

Consternation is a noun that can stop you in your tracks because it means "a sudden, alarming amazement or dread that results in utter confusion; dismay."

If you have a sense of consternation you have become afraid, disoriented, or completely befuddled. It comes from the Latin roots con- and -sternare, which means "spread out." Picture all of your thoughts strewn about, nothing makes sense and you might experience a state of consternation. Like the nightmare about the class you forgot to go to in high school and now you have to take the final exam!

Definitions of consternation
  1. noun
    fear resulting from the awareness of danger
    synonyms: alarm, dismay
    see moresee less
    type of:
    fear, fearfulness, fright
    an emotion experienced in anticipation of some specific pain or danger (usually accompanied by a desire to flee or fight)
Word Family
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