leg·​end | \ ˈle-jənd How to pronounce legend (audio) \

Definition of legend

1a : a story coming down from the past especially : one popularly regarded as historical although not verifiable the legend of a lost continent Arthurian legends
b : a body of such stories a place in the legend of the frontier
c : a popular myth of recent origin the legend of the Loch Ness monster
d : a person or thing that inspires legends a baseball legend
e : the subject of a legend its violence was legend even in its own time— William Broyles Jr.
2a : an inscription or title on an object (such as a coin) The quarter bore the legend "In God We Trust".
b : caption sense 2b The legend identifies the various parts of the illustrated anatomy.
c : an explanatory list of the symbols on a map or chart

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Synonyms for legend


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Examples of legend in a Sentence

I don't believe the legends I've heard about this forest. the legend of a lost continent He has become a baseball legend. The gravestone bears the legend “Rest in Peace.”
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Recent Examples on the Web Angels pitcher/home run spectacle Shohei Ohtani grew his legend. BostonGlobe.com, 17 July 2021 Well, part of that is because of the legend himself, Bruce Lee, who was one of our pioneers, just like Jackie Chan is. Lacey Vorrasi-banis, EW.com, 8 July 2021 According to its own legend, the company began life as a sheet metal business before evolving into something much more sophisticated and technology led. Trevor Clawson, Forbes, 29 June 2021 Tucker Barnhart built a reputation as one of the best defensive catchers in the sport and his play in the ninth inning Thursday was just another story in his legend. Bobby Nightengale, The Enquirer, 4 June 2021 Ditto Javier Báez, who homered twice Monday, overcame another slow start offensively and added to his legend with the reverse baserunning play in Pittsburgh that went viral. Paul Sullivan, chicagotribune.com, 31 May 2021 Adam Vinatieri, the man who built his legend on clutch postseason kicks in New England and then cemented it by becoming the NFL’s all-time leading scorer in Indianapolis, is retiring after 24 years in the NFL. Joel A. Erickson, The Indianapolis Star, 26 May 2021 Morrison sings free of his own legend yet is more himself than ever — and ahead of his famous imitators. Armond White, National Review, 19 May 2021 That couldn’t have been the start of his legend, though. Greg Moore, The Arizona Republic, 15 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'legend.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of legend

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for legend

Middle English legende, from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French legende, from Medieval Latin legenda, from Latin, feminine of legendus, gerundive of legere to gather, select, read; akin to Greek legein to gather, say, logos speech, word, reason

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Time Traveler for legend

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The first known use of legend was in the 14th century

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Dictionary Entries Near legend

leg drop



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Statistics for legend

Last Updated

22 Jul 2021

Cite this Entry

“Legend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/legend. Accessed 31 Jul. 2021.

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English Language Learners Definition of legend

: a story from the past that is believed by many people but cannot be proved to be true
: a famous or important person who is known for doing something extremely well
: a list that explains the symbols on a map


leg·​end | \ ˈle-jənd How to pronounce legend (audio) \

Kids Definition of legend

1 : an old story that is widely believed but cannot be proved to be true
2 : a person or thing that is very famous for having special qualities or abilities a baseball legend
3 : a list of symbols used (as on a map)

More from Merriam-Webster on legend

Nglish: Translation of legend for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of legend for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about legend


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