back·​story ˈbak-ˌstȯr-ē How to pronounce backstory (audio)
: a story that tells what led up to the main story or plot (as of a film)

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Din Djarin The bounty-hunting gunslinging space dad travels the galaxy in a post-Empire world with a tragic backstory and son Grogu in tow. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, 24 May 2023 Queen Charlotte gives a bit more insight into the backstory behind the queen's right hand man and his love life. Olivia Evans, Women's Health, 12 May 2023 On the other hand, the new movie centers on something small and quiet: the backstory of Rocket Raccoon. Michael O'sullivan, Washington Post, 28 Apr. 2023 There, Suarez highlighted his profile and backstory as the Hispanic son of a former Miami mayor and the Republican executive of a major American city, who was easily reelected in 2021. Chris Boccia, ABC News, 25 Apr. 2023 Certain key elements of backstory, including the origins of Mrs. Davis and her connection to Simone's father, are held back longer than necessary. Kristen Baldwin,, 20 Apr. 2023 But ever since it was first optioned by the poet Robert Burns in the late 1700s, the haggis backstory has been monopolized by Scotland and the Scots, sometimes mischievously. Angus Mackinnon, CNN, 3 Apr. 2023 That backstory involves Elgin's grief over his dead wife and his choice to leave his daughter Kira (Chloe Coleman) for one last heist, drawn by the promise of acquiring a resurrection tablet that could bring his wife back to life. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, 31 Mar. 2023 Unfortunately, this movie pretty much consists of figures sans backstory or much personality killing others with even less of either, in episodes minus any particular flair for action or suspense. Dennis Harvey, Variety, 29 Mar. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'backstory.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1982, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of backstory was in 1982

Dictionary Entries Near backstory

Cite this Entry

“Backstory.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 2 Jun. 2023.

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