leg·end | \ˈle-jənd \

Definition of legend 

1a : a story coming down from the past especially : one popularly regarded as historical although not verifiable the legend of a lost continent Arthurian legends

b : a body of such stories a place in the legend of the frontier

c : a popular myth of recent origin the legend of the Loch Ness monster

d : a person or thing that inspires legends a baseball legend

e : the subject of a legend its violence was legend even in its own time— William Broyles Jr.

2a : an inscription or title on an object (such as a coin) The quarter bore the legend "In God We Trust".

b : caption sense 2b The legend identifies the various parts of the illustrated anatomy.

c : an explanatory list of the symbols on a map or chart

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Examples of legend in a Sentence

I don't believe the legends I've heard about this forest. the legend of a lost continent He has become a baseball legend. The gravestone bears the legend “Rest in Peace.”
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Recent Examples on the Web

According to legend, the great sword Excalibur was imposing and beautiful. Jonathan Schifman, Popular Mechanics, "The Entire History of Steel," 9 July 2018 According to legend, Pat, weary of hot dogs, suggested that Harry go to a store and buy some beef. Joseph A. Gambardello, Philly.com, "Philly cheesesteak: Everything you need to know," 5 July 2018 Trump said, referring to golf legend Phil Mickelson. Gregg Re, Fox News, "Trump touts progress on military, veterans issues at armed forces charity dinner," 3 July 2018 A week ago, former Chiefs linebacker Tamba Hali was talking up quarterback Patrick Mahomes on the NFL Network and made the comparison to Packers legend Brett Favre. Pete Grathoff, kansascity, "Brett Favre's former teammate 'beginning to buy into the hype' about Patrick Mahomes," 2 July 2018 PGA Tour Grill will pay homage to the late professional legend Arnold Palmer who lived in Central Florida and owned the Bay Hill golf course. Kyle Arnold, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Foxtail Coffee, craft beer coming to Orlando airport's new south terminal," 22 June 2018 Losing to a legend such as Dixon is hardly something to be embarrassed by, but there's no doubt Penske will be looking to avenge last year's defeat. Jim Ayello, Indianapolis Star, "Penske poised to avenge last season's disappointment at Road America," 22 June 2018 Alpine Valley Music Theatre has been the host to legends. Piet Levy, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Alpine Valley Music Theatre is back in business after no-show season, but struggles remain," 21 June 2018 According to legend, this browsing area derived its name from the fact that practically every man, woman and child living there was an habitual pipe smoker. John Kelly, Washington Post, "There will be blood: Some District neighborhoods once sported memorable names," 19 June 2018

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

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for legend

Middle English legende, from Anglo-French & Medieval Latin; Anglo-French legende, from Medieval Latin legenda, from Latin, feminine of legendus, gerundive of legere to gather, select, read; akin to Greek legein to gather, say, logos speech, word, reason

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Dictionary Entries near legend


leg bye

leg drop





Statistics for legend

Last Updated

18 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for legend

The first known use of legend was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of legend

: a story from the past that is believed by many people but cannot be proved to be true

: a famous or important person who is known for doing something extremely well

: a list that explains the symbols on a map


leg·end | \ˈle-jənd \

Kids Definition of legend

1 : an old story that is widely believed but cannot be proved to be true

2 : a person or thing that is very famous for having special qualities or abilities a baseball legend

3 : a list of symbols used (as on a map)

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