an·​ec·​dot·​al | \ ˌa-nik-ˈdō-tᵊl How to pronounce anecdotal (audio) \

Definition of anecdotal

1 : based on or consisting of reports or observations of usually unscientific observers anecdotal evidence health benefits that may be more anecdotal than factual
2a : of, relating to, or consisting of anecdotes an anecdotal biography
b : given to or skilled in telling anecdotes : anecdotic sense 2 my anecdotal uncle
3 : of, relating to, or being the depiction of a scene suggesting a story anecdotal details

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Other Words from anecdotal

anecdotally \ -​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce anecdotally (audio) \ adverb

Examples of anecdotal in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

While there’s anecdotal evidence that CBD oil, with its far-ranging anti-inflammatory properties, can help treat this autoimmune disease affecting some 7.5 million Americans, studies to date remain inconclusive. Lambeth Hochwald,, "Can CBD Relieve Psoriasis Symptoms? Here’s What Doctors Are Saying," 9 July 2019 But growing anecdotal evidence suggested the trees were threatened by overexploitation and growing populations. Alex Fox, Science | AAAS, "World’s supply of frankincense could go up in smoke," 1 July 2019 While the organization has conducted no official studies, Zimmerman said their veterans have shared anecdotal evidence that the companion animal's presence inspires significant lifestyle changes. Holly V. Hays, Indianapolis Star, "A 20-pound cat with a squeaky purr helped a veteran fight off his darkest memories," 25 June 2019 But, given some limited studies and a lot of anecdotal stories, a number of states have gone ahead and legalized medical marijuana. John Timmer, Ars Technica, "Medical marijuana vs. opioid abuse: New study questions the connection," 13 June 2019 For years, desperate patients and parents have pushed for wider access to medical marijuana products for a host of conditions including pain, post-traumatic stress disorder and epilepsy, with only anecdotal stories and limited studies on their side. Matthew Perrone,, "Marijuana-based seizure treatment gets positive review from FDA," 17 Apr. 2018 Though data is scarce, the anecdotal evidence that progressive workplaces are finally shedding outdated binary pronoun norms—in the same way several colleges already have—is fast accumulating. Lila Maclellan, Quartz at Work, "Those she/her/hers at the end of email messages are more than a passing trend," 24 June 2019 And while there may be anecdotal evidence of that here and there, that kind of story about the past gets blown far out of proportion to absolve people of having to really think about the consequences that our ancestors enslaved other humans. Shauna Stuart |,, "Hosts of NPR’s ‘White Lies’ on how ‘white’ Alabama talks about troubling history," 20 June 2019 There’s anecdotal evidence that suggests clowns help greatly with memory, language and communication and awareness of self in the present. The Washington Post, The Mercury News, "Is laughter really the best medicine? In many ways, that’s no joke.," 15 June 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'anecdotal.' 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 anecdotal

1747, in the meaning defined at sense 2a

History and Etymology for anecdotal

see anecdote

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Statistics for anecdotal

Last Updated

15 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for anecdotal

The first known use of anecdotal was in 1747

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More from Merriam-Webster on anecdotal

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with anecdotal

Spanish Central: Translation of anecdotal

Nglish: Translation of anecdotal for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of anecdotal for Arabic Speakers

Comments on anecdotal

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characterized by aphorism

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