Meaning of shell shock in English:

shell shock

Pronunciation /ˈʃɛl ʃɒk/

Translate shell shock into Spanish


mass noun
  • 1A condition with psychological and psychosomatic symptoms resulting from exposure to active warfare, first identified in soldiers undergoing bombardment in the trenches in the First World War. Shell shock would now be regarded as a form of post-traumatic stress disorder.

    ‘in July 1917 he was sent to Craiglockhart War Hospital, suffering from shell shock’
    • ‘PTSD, once referred to as shell shock or battle fatigue, was first brought to public attention by war veterans, but it can result from any number of traumatic incidents.’
    • ‘Post-traumatic stress disorder - once known as shell shock - is sadly just as relevant as ever.’
    • ‘Appendix A is an interesting but rather detached precis of chemical warfare and shell shock.’
    • ‘His discussion of the physical reaction of the body to extreme stress rests on a handful of books and memoirs, overlooking the wealth of literature on the related phenomenon of combat stress, war neurosis, and shell shock.’
    • ‘It used to be known as shell shock but it's just as relevant today as ever.’
    • ‘It was recognised fully during the First World War - the first industrial war - under the name of shell shock or war neurosis.’
    • ‘Was it a sign of madness brought on by shell shock and imprisonment and public disgrace, the way some scholars would like to see it?’
    • ‘In the light of modern ideas about soldiery and a somewhat clearer understanding of shell shock, or post-traumatic stress disorder, most people have greeted the news with approval.’
    • ‘The only cure for shell shock was thought to be complete rest away from all the effects of war.’
    • ‘What used to be broadly referred to as shell shock and is now termed post-traumatic stress disorder has typically been discussed in relation to its effects on male soldiers.’
    • ‘Early in World War I, the term shell shock emerged to describe the array of psychiatric symptoms soldiers manifested.’
    • ‘She was diagnosed with a mild case of shell shock and was close to a complete nervous breakdown.’
    • ‘The psychological shock of seeing a man dead from combat is subtly different from seeing one dead from natural causes, a fact that led to the phenomenon called Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder, or shell shock.’
    • ‘An estimated 80,000 British men suffered from shell shock, a form of mental breakdown, while others shot themselves in the hope they would be sent home from the front, or took their own lives to escape their situation.’
    • ‘It describes the diagnostic eras of shell shock, battle fatigue, and post-traumatic stress disorder in the particular political, cultural, and medical contexts of their time.’
    • ‘A manual in 1960 urged people to understand that breakdowns were no more manageable than shell shock or battle fatigue.’
    • ‘The files disclose that many of the men were suffering from shell shock and were not in a fit mental state to answer the charges put to them.’
    • ‘Then there was Milligan's wartime trauma, when he suffered flesh wounds and shell shock in north Africa and Italy.’
    • ‘Many were repeat deserters who showed no sign of shell shock.’
    • ‘My grandmother was a nurse there in the Second World War when they were treating servicemen for burns and shell shock.’
    1. 1.1A state or feeling of severe shock or surprise.
      ‘investors' shell shock seems to be wearing off’
      • ‘he's still suffering from shell shock after his divorce’


First World War with reference to exposure to shellfire.