1. To behave or run around in a wild, unruly, out-of-control manner; to be or become crazy or chaotic. We tried to have some organized games for the kids, but they all started going amok as soon as they got here. The villagers were cleaning up debris for days after the bulls went amok through the streets.
2. To become bad or go awry; to get out of control; to go haywire. This whole operation has gone amok. I don't know how we can be expected to finish by the deadline under these conditions.
3. dated To rush around in a violent, murderous frenzy. (Note: This is the phrase's original specific meaning, taken from Malay. "Amok" also has an older alternative spelling, "amuck.") Fueled by alcohol and cocaine, Dave went amok when his wife told him she'd been seeing someone else. Luckily, a neighbor called the police when they heard such a commotion.
Farlex Dictionary of Idioms. © 2015 Farlex, Inc, all rights reserved.