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myth

Line breaks: myth
Pronunciation: /mɪθ
 
/

Definition of myth in English:

noun

1A traditional story, especially one concerning the early history of a people or explaining a natural or social phenomenon, and typically involving supernatural beings or events: ancient Celtic myths [mass noun]: the heroes of Greek myth
More example sentences
  • Classic Norse myth is rife with stories concerning Loki's attempts to subvert Odin's authority, and Odin's retaliatory actions.
  • In later Greek myth Hecate is presented as the daughter of Hera and Zeus.
  • I think the timocratic structure of divinity in early Greek myth might be quite a good thing to apply to the tale of Eris, the apple and the Trojan War.
Synonyms
folk tale, story, folk story, legend, tale, fable, saga, allegory, parable, tradition, lore, folklore
technical mythos, mythus
2A widely held but false belief or idea: the belief that evening primrose oil helps to cure eczema is a myth, according to dermatologists
More example sentences
  • One of the most widely believed myths in America today is the belief that corporations are an inherent part of capitalism.
  • Allow me to dispel a few popular myths about US taxes.
  • He said the average customers were men who gambled at weekends, dispelling the popular myth that housewives were behind the rise in the popularity of poker.
2.1A fictitious or imaginary person or thing: nobody had ever heard of Simon’s mysterious friend—Anna said he was a myth
More example sentences
  • His secret masters of the world may be a myth, but imagining they exist can make for an enjoyable reading experience.
  • It should not surprise anyone if it turns out that Jean Houston's autobiography is a piece of fiction, a heroic myth spun by her imagination out of the fabric of her desires.
2.2An exaggerated or idealized conception of a person or thing: the book is a scholarly study of the Churchill myth
More example sentences
  • Idealized, regressive myths of a better, more magical time and place are a poor platform for making art.
  • There are myths and distorted concepts out there that may not be true.
  • Racial conflicts are being encouraged with vastly exaggerated figures and myths.
Synonyms
misconception, fallacy, mistaken belief, false notion, misbelief, old wives' tale, fairy story, fairy tale, fiction, fantasy, delusion, figment of the imagination;
informal story, tall story, tall tale, fib, cock and bull story, kidology

Origin

mid 19th century: from modern Latin mythus, via late Latin from Greek muthos.

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