I was besides myself with joy


Senior Member
vietnam vietnamese
Would you please explain "besides myself with joy" in this sentence.
"I was besides myself with joy when my father said the car was at my disposal."
Thank you very much.
  • panjandrum

    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    Beside myself:
    So far out of my normal mental state, due to any extreme emotion, as to feel like or appear to be a different person - "beside" the original.


    English, Australia
    From "Dictionary of Word Origins" by Jordan Almond
    "Beside himself. Why do we describe a distraught person as being 'beside himself'? Because the ancients believed that soul and body could part and that under great emotional stress the soul would actually leave the body. When this happened a person was 'beside himself
    Apparently the word "beside" had a different meaning hundreds of years ago. It doesn't make sense in modern english. It is simply a phrase that we have kept using.

    "Beside" was formerly (15th through 19th centuries) used in phrases to mean "out of a mental state or condition, as 'beside one's patience, one's gravity, one's wits'" (Oxford Engl. Dict.), and that use survives only in "'beside oneself': out of one's wits, out of one's senses."
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