Definition of Old wives' tale

1. Noun. A bit of lore passed on by word of mouth.

Generic synonyms: Lore, Traditional Knowledge

Definition of Old wives' tale

1. Noun. A supposed truth that has been passed down by word of mouth ¹

2. Noun. A rumour, myth or superstition; something which is almost certainly untrue, despite acceptance by many. ¹

¹ Source:

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Lexicographical Neighbors of Old Wives' Tale

old sport
old squaw
old stager
old stick
old style
old style font
old sweat
old sweats
old time
old time used to be
old times
old timey
old wine in a new bottle
old wives' tale
old wives' tales
old women
old yellow enzyme
olde tyme
olde worlde

Literary usage of Old wives' tale

Below you will find example usage of this term as found in modern and/or classical literature:

1. Horizons: A Book of Criticism by Francis Hackett (1918)
"The Old Wives' Tale is a novel of many parts, many distinctions, of which the chief distinction is not its delightful length nor its originality of subject, ..."

2. Calcutta Review by University of Calcutta (1844)
"SOME OBSERVATIONS ON THE "MARVELLOUS" OLD WIVES' TALE T. GROVE The "marvellous" in English drama begins immediately and strikingly with the first known ..."

3. The Encyclopaedia Britannica: A Dictionary of Arts, Sciences, and General by Thomas Spencer Baynes (1888)
"... been preserved and edited by Mr Dyce :—The Chronicle History of Edward I. (published in 1593); The Sattle of Alcázar (1594); The Old Wives' Tale (1595); ..."

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