apoc·​ry·​pha | \ ə-ˈpä-krə-fə How to pronounce apocrypha (audio) \

Definition of apocrypha

1 : writings or statements of dubious authenticity
2 capitalized
a : books included in the Septuagint and Vulgate but excluded from the Jewish and Protestant canons of the Old Testament — see Bible Table
b : early Christian writings not included in the New Testament

Examples of apocrypha in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Even Steve Jobs wouldn’t let his kids play with iPads, or so the apocrypha goes. Carter Bays, Good Housekeeping, 6 June 2022 Why complicate a perfectly fun bunch of sequels with the strictures of continuity and apocrypha? Adam Rogers, Wired, 11 Feb. 2021 Where Nay’s book was something of a meditation on Patriotic themes in Mormon teaching, the Bundy additions — this post-2014 apocrypha — change the entire document. Leah Sottile, Longreads, 18 May 2018

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

First Known Use of apocrypha

1539, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for apocrypha

borrowed from Medieval Latin, neuter plural (for scripta apocrypha "uncanonical writings") of Late Latin apocryphus "secret, of doubtful authenticity, uncanonical," borrowed from Greek apókryphos "hidden, concealed, obscure," verbal adjective of apokrýptein "to hide (from), keep hidden (from)," from apo- apo- + krýptein "to conceal, hide" — more at crypt

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The first known use of apocrypha was in 1539

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Last Updated

18 Jun 2022

Cite this Entry

“Apocrypha.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/apocrypha. Accessed 14 Aug. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on apocrypha

Nglish: Translation of apocrypha for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about apocrypha


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