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The English suffixes -phobia, -phobic, -phobe (of Greek origin: φόβος/φοβία ) occur in technical usage in psychology and psychiatry to construct words that describe irrational, disabling fear as a mental disorder, a phobia (e.g., agoraphobia), in biology to describe organisms that dislike certain conditions (e.g., acidophobia), and in medicine to describe hypersensitivity to a stimulus, usually sensory (e.g., photophobia). In common usage they also form words that describe dislike or hatred of a particular thing or subject. The suffix is antonymic to -phil-.

Some concepts have several words attatched to them by different authors, depending, for example, on the choice of Greek or Latin root. The fear of bees is known variously asApiphobia (from Latin apis for "honeybee") or melissophobia (from Greek melissa for "honeybee")


See also the category:Phobias.


Psychological conditions[edit | edit source]

Phobia categories[edit | edit source]

There are a number of ways to categorize phobias, none of them particularly satisfactory due to overlapping divisions. [citation needed]

According to the fourth revision of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders phobias can be classified under the following general categories:

, like the fear of medical procedures including needles and injections (Trypanophobia)


We might add in here:


Non-psychological conditions[edit | edit source]

Biology[edit | edit source]

Biologists use a number of -phobia/-phobic terms to describe predispositions by plants and animals against certain conditions. For antonyms, see here.

Prejudices and discrimination[edit | edit source]

The suffix -phobia is used to coin terms that denote a particular anti-ethnic or anti-demographic sentiment, such as Europhobia, Francophobia, Hispanophobia, and Indophobia. Often a synonym with the prefix "anti-" already exists (e.g., Polonophobia vs. anti-Polonism). Anti-religious sentiments are expressed in terms such as Christianophobia and Islamophobia.

Other prejudices include:

see also[edit | edit source]

References[edit | edit source]

  • Chris Aldrich (2002-12-02). The Aldrich Dictionary of Phobias and Other Word Families, Trafford Publishing.



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