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Alternative Spellings

chalariah, choleria, cholera, kholerye, chalera


  • Plague or cholera (literal or metaphorical)
  • "wreck," in the phrase "nervous choleria." A person who behaves wildly or badly, such as a mischievous child.

Example Sentences

  • "he said Leo was acting like a nervous chaleria. It stopped the conversations and Sam sheepishly says said 'that's what my grandmother would say.'"(
  • "My boss is such a chaleria, but I can't afford to quit my job."
  • "She destroyed my marriage -- a choleria on her!"

Languages of Origin



כאָלערע kholere 'cholera'

Who Uses This

Older: Jews who are middle-aged and older
Ashkenazim: Jews with Ashkenazi heritage


North America




Yiddish dictionaries define this word (often kholera without the "i") as cholera. The use in the phrase "nervous wreck" seems to be an American innovation. One contributor believes that the etymology is that a chaleria came to mean a person to avoid at all costs because they were (or as if they were) infected with cholera.

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