urban legend


: an often lurid story or anecdote that is based on hearsay and widely circulated as true
the urban legend of alligators living in the sewers

called also urban myth

Examples of urban legend in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Regardless of who’s to blame, at least this cyber urban legend has inspired some solid meme content. Andy Greenberg Dhruv Mehrotra, WIRED, 10 Feb. 2024 The online film community tends to treat Nyad as an urban legend, a movie that exists only to earn Guild nominations and cannot be seen by untrained eyes. Vulture, 23 Jan. 2024 The general plot of the movie, involving a white graduate student researching an urban legend about a Black son of a slave who was lynched for falling in love with a white woman, offers complex questions for viewers to ponder. Chris Snellgrove, EW.com, 16 Oct. 2023 The find suggests that sharks’ finely tuned sense of smell, the subject of urban legends, was already being selected for just as these predators were becoming established. Jeanne Timmons, Ars Technica, 6 July 2023 The accident spawned an grisly urban legend that Mansfield had been decapitated in the crash, though authorities later disputed this, stating though Mansfield died from severe brain and head trauma sustained in the crash, she was not decapitated. Colin Scanlon, Redbook, 4 Aug. 2023 In this urban legend, Machado portrays Dolores, released from prison after serving 16 years for dealing weed. Lorraine Ali, Los Angeles Times, 7 July 2023 Released under the auspices of Gimlet Media, the studio recently absorbed into parent company Spotify after drastic cuts, the retitled podcast riffed on the urban legend of Sweeney Todd, the mythical barber made famous by Stephen Sondheim. Alison Herman, Variety, 7 July 2023 The picture’s premise is the urban legend that a supernatural being from the afterlife will violently murder anyone who cheats on their partner. Patrick Frater, Variety, 28 July 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'urban legend.' 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

1968, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of urban legend was in 1968

Dictionary Entries Near urban legend

Cite this Entry

“Urban legend.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/urban%20legend. Accessed 25 Feb. 2024.

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