backstory

noun
back·​story | \ ˈbak-ˌstȯr-ē \

Definition of backstory 

: a story that tells what led up to the main story or plot (as of a film)

Examples of backstory in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

One of the most meaningful pieces in Gaines's own home has a pretty unexpected backstory. Emma Bazilian, House Beautiful, "Joanna Gaines Told Us The Best Advice From Her New Book," 8 Nov. 2018 There’s a giant backstory of personal hardship with being in my body and sexuality and even abuse that makes this song a really beautiful and healing and empowering song. Tamara Fuentes, Seventeen, "Alyson Stoner is All Grown Up and She Wants Disney To Grow Up, Too," 14 Sep. 2018 Like many secure schools in the U.S., Littleton has a backstory. Lara Sorokanich, Popular Mechanics, "What Littleton Learned," 1 Aug. 2018 There are no scenes of Mideast war slipped in here to give him a visible backstory. Colin Covert, kansascity, "‘Leave No Trace’ is a quietly moving story of family love," 12 July 2018 In a mock job-recruitment study, participants acting as employers were given a backstory about their company with both relevant and irrelevant details about the company’s history and current programs. Eric Vanepps, Time, "The Best Way to Get People to Tell the Truth, According to Science," 11 July 2018 Bring your wine-loving pals to the tiny haley.henry, where the wines are all from small-production vineyards, and each has a backstory. Lauren Daley, BostonGlobe.com, "How to do summer in Boston like a local," 15 June 2018 The very cool helmeted bounty hunter of the original Star Wars trilogy got a backstory in the prequels, thus losing some of his mysterious presence. Brian Truitt, USA TODAY, "Going 'Solo': Here are 5 more characters who need their own 'Star Wars' spinoffs," 29 May 2018 There was an amazing backstory and history — the Canadians had won the last four Olympic gold medals. Jeff Seidel, Detroit Free Press, "Olympics 2018: Farmington Hills' Keller watches hockey gold from box," 22 Feb. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of backstory

1982, in the meaning defined above

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about backstory

Statistics for backstory

Last Updated

8 Jan 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for backstory

The first known use of backstory was in 1982

See more words from the same year

More from Merriam-Webster on backstory

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with backstory

Nglish: Translation of backstory for Spanish Speakers

Comments on backstory

What made you want to look up backstory? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

marked by shyness and lack of polish

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Liar, Liar Quiz

  • alt-5761dbe2ba986
  • Someone who pretends to be sick in order to avoid work is a:
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!