folk·​lore | \ ˈfōk-ˌlȯr How to pronounce folklore (audio) \

Definition of folklore

1 : traditional customs, tales, sayings, dances, or art forms preserved among a people The coyote appears in much of Native American folklore. Paul Bunyan is a figure from folklore.
2 : a branch of knowledge that deals with folklore a specialist in folklore
3 : an often unsupported notion, story, or saying that is widely circulated the folklore about the health risks of computers

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Other Words from folklore

folkloric \ ˈfōk-​ˌlȯr-​ik How to pronounce folkloric (audio) \ adjective
folklorish \ ˈfōk-​ˌlȯr-​ish How to pronounce folklorish (audio) \ adjective
folklorist \ ˈfōk-​ˌlȯr-​ist How to pronounce folklorist (audio) \ noun
folkloristic \ ˌfōk-​ˌlȯr-​ˈi-​stik How to pronounce folkloristic (audio) \ adjective

Examples of folklore in a Sentence

The coyote appears in a great deal of Native American folklore. the rich folklore of Louisiana He can't tell the difference between fact and folklore.
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Recent Examples on the Web Want to know how college football folklore and traditions are born in Alabama? Joseph Goodman |, al, "‘Butch’ Baldone, the Bear’s tailor, crafted lasting Alabama legacy," 19 May 2020 Nobody is going to criticize you for not taking the mythology of Dracula seriously enough, but there's a wealth of Mexican-American religion and folklore that's being treated with an uncomfortable superficiality here. Daniel Fienberg, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Penny Dreadful: City of Angels': TV Review," 24 Apr. 2020 Talented artists such as Toriyama Sekien, his disciple Kitagawa Utamaro, and even the great Hokusai regularly produced yokai art based on folklore or literature, charming readers by visualizing what had, to that point, been invisible. Matt Alt, The New Yorker, "From Japan, a Mascot for the Pandemic," 9 Apr. 2020 The siblings’ parents arrived in gold country ready to make a fortune, bearing a trove of rituals and folklore. Mark Athitakis, USA TODAY, "Review: C Pam Zhang's ambitious novel turns the Western on its head with Chinese myth," 6 Apr. 2020 Native Americans had a tradition of naming moons based on tracking seasons as well as folklore. Isabel Garcia, House Beautiful, "A Meteor Shower and May's Super Flower Moon Will Light Up the Night Sky This Week," 4 May 2020 City of Angels takes place nearly 40 years after the original series, in 1938, and as such trades in the gothic horror of its predecessor for a more Chandler-esque film noir aesthetic, infused with traditional Mexican-American folklore. Jennifer Ouellette, Ars Technica, "Penny Dreadful: City of Angels walks a fine line between realism, the supernatural," 26 Apr. 2020 In the Guardian, the novelist Edmund White enumerated the many differences between AIDS and COVID-19, but also the haunting similarities: the rumor, misinformation, and parascientific folklore surrounding both. Masha Gessen, The New Yorker, "What Lessons Does the AIDS Crisis Offer for the Coronavirus Pandemic?," 8 Apr. 2020 Dawn’s collection includes vintage magazines, postcards and leap day Valentines that show at the time, folklore held leap year as a time for gender role reversals, when women could propose to men, and the men couldn’t refuse. oregonlive, "Oregon’s Leap Day Lady thinks about Feb. 29th 366 days of the year," 24 Feb. 2020

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

1846, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Time Traveler for folklore

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The first known use of folklore was in 1846

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Statistics for folklore

Last Updated

4 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Folklore.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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More Definitions for folklore


How to pronounce folklore (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of folklore

: traditional customs, beliefs, stories, and sayings
: ideas or stories that are not true but that many people have heard or read


folk·​lore | \ ˈfōk-ˌlȯr How to pronounce folklore (audio) \

Kids Definition of folklore

: traditional customs, beliefs, stories, and sayings

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