adjective myth·i·cal \ ˈmi-thi-kəl \
variants: or mythic play \-thik\
|Updated on: 12 Aug 2018

Definition of mythical

1 : based on or described in a myth especially as contrasted with history
2 usually mythical : existing only in the imagination : fictitious, imaginary
  • constructed a mythical all-star team
3 usually mythic : having qualities suitable to myth : legendary
  • the twilight of a mythic professional career
  • —Clayton Riley


play \-thi-k(ə-)lē\ adverb

Examples of mythical in a Sentence

  1. Hercules was a mythical hero who was half man and half god.

  2. gods fighting in a mythical battle in the sky

  3. The sportswriters picked a mythical all-star team.

  4. The benefits of the new policy proved to be mythical.

Recent Examples of mythical from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of mythical

mythical, from Late Latin mȳthicus "of myth, legendary" (borrowed from Greek mȳthikós, from mŷthos "utterance, tale, myth" + -ikos 1-ic) + 1-al; mythic, borrowed from Late Latin mȳthicus

Synonym Discussion of mythical

fictitious, fabulous, legendary, mythical, apocryphal mean having the nature of something imagined or invented. fictitious implies fabrication and suggests artificiality or contrivance more than deliberate falsification or deception.
    • fictitious characters
fabulous stresses the marvelous or incredible character of something without necessarily implying impossibility or actual nonexistence.
    • a land of fabulous riches
legendary suggests the elaboration of invented details and distortion of historical facts produced by popular tradition.
    • the legendary exploits of Davy Crockett
mythical implies a purely fanciful explanation of facts or the creation of beings and events out of the imagination.
    • mythical creatures
apocryphal implies an unknown or dubious source or origin or may imply that the thing itself is dubious or inaccurate.
    • a book that repeats many apocryphal stories

MYTHICAL Defined for English Language Learners


Definition of mythical for English Language Learners

  • : based on or described in a myth

  • : existing only in the imagination

MYTHICAL Defined for Kids


adjective myth·i·cal \ ˈmi-thi-kəl \

Definition of mythical for Students

1 : based on or told of in a myth
  • a mythical hero
2 : imaginary
  • a mythical town

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fullness to the point of excess

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