N: 1. late 14c., “bile, melancholy” (originally the same as choler), from Middle French cholera or directly from Late Latin cholera, from Greek kholera “a type of disease characterized by diarrhea, supposedly caused by choler” (Celsus), from khole “gall, bile,” from khloazein “to be green,” from khloros (see Chloe). But another sense of khole was “drainpipe, gutter.”
Revived 1560s in classical sense as a name for a severe digestive disorder (rarely fatal to adults); and 1704 (especially as cholera morbus), for a highly lethal disease endemic in India, periodically breaking out in global epidemics, especially that reaching Britain and America in the early 1830s.
2. cholera, an acute infection of the small intestine caused by the bacterium Vibrio cholerae and characterized by extreme diarrhea with rapid and severe depletion of body fluids and salts. Cholera has often risen to epidemic proportions in sub-Saharan Africa and South Asia, particularly in India and Bangladesh. In the past two centuries, seven pandemics (global epidemics) of cholera have carried the disease to countries around the world.
Cholera is a disease that can incite populations to panic. Its reputation as a fierce and unrelenting killer is a deserved one. It has been responsible for the deaths of millions, for economic losses of immense magnitude, and for the disruption of the very fabric of society in all parts of the world. In spite of the chaos that it continues to generate, cholera is perhaps the best understood of the modern plagues.
3. The disease is not likely to spread directly from one person to another; therefore, casual contact with an infected person is not a risk for becoming ill.
- Verb + cholera: have, suffer from | catch, contract | die from/of.
- Quant.: outbreak.
- Cholera + noun: epidemic, outbreak A cholera epidemic swept the country. | toxin | case, victim.
5. Cultural Interrelation:
- Reality: German philosopher, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel (1770-1831), and The 11th President of the United States, James K. Polk (1795-1849), died of cholera.
- Fiction: The Painted Veil (2006), movie directed by John Curran; written by Ron Nyswaner, based on the novel by W. Somerset Maugham.
S: 1. OED – http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?allowed_in_frame=0&search=cholera&searchmode=none (last access: 3 September 2014). 2. EncBrit – http://www.britannica.com/science/cholera (last access: 21 May 2015). 3. CDC – http://www.cdc.gov/cholera/general/index.html (last access: 2 December 2013). 4. http://oxforddictionary.so8848.com/search1?word=cholera (last access: 20 May 2015). 5. http://www.ranker.com/list/famous-people-who-died-of-cholera/reference (last access: 21 May 2015); http://www.nytimes.com/2006/12/20/movies/20veil.html?_r=0 (last access: 21 May 2015).