This study examined the relationship between extraversion, neuroticism and rated word-arousal. High-arousal word ratings correlated with neuroticism (r = 0.37; P < 0.05). High neurotics rated high-arousal words as more arousing than low neurotics (t = 2.9; d.f. = 38; P < 0.05). Extraverts rated low-arousal words as more arousing than introverts (t = 2.2; d.f. = 38; P < 0.05). The association between high-arousal word ratings and neuroticism but not introversion suggested that rated word-arousal is primarily an index of emotionality which may not necessarily lead to the cortical arousal associated with neural consolidation.