Definition of folklore in English:



  • 1[mass noun] The traditional beliefs, customs, and stories of a community, passed through the generations by word of mouth.

    • ‘Anne has been collecting stories and information from old people for the folklore collection.’
    • ‘Her Artwork is informed by an interest in the folklore traditions associated with landscape.’
    • ‘The first concerns social historians' attitudes towards the folklore corpus.’
    • ‘Some jingles have entered the folklore of the nation.’
    • ‘Both have collected folklore from Bab for the past three decades.’
    • ‘Social investigators concentrated on the social problems of the south, whereas folklore collectors often focused on the north.’
    • ‘Such political implications in popular culture suggest a direction of considerable importance for feminism and for folklore studies.’
    • ‘Much of the international folklore scholarship in those years was conducted in German.’
    • ‘The folklore corpus has been used by historians and anthropologists alike as a historical source.’
    • ‘A number of essays are especially relevant for folklore studies.’
    • ‘The brass band played traditional army marches as well as folklore motifs and jazz pieces.’
    • ‘Today, he is largely forgotten as a folklore collector and his publications are little known or read.’
    • ‘The folklore festival and training camp for children is full of activities that connect them with the past.’
    • ‘Here he encouraged students to collect folklore from their home communities and established an archive for the material.’
    • ‘I can save the researchers many years of time by passing on the folklore of the area.’
    • ‘The official figure was fifteen rebels dead, but later local folklore had it as high as seventy.’
    • ‘Ancient folklore has it that even Setanta was legless more than once.’
    • ‘Myth, folklore and inaccuracy cloud this event, yet it still has the potency to cause controversy.’
    • ‘So there's a lot of folklore surrounding the notion of flu shots making you sick.’
    • ‘The time is the 1920s, and Hurston the character is in town to collect local folklore.’
    mythology, lore, oral history, tradition, folk tradition
    legends, fables, myths, folk tales, folk stories, old wives' tales
    mythus, mythos
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1A body of popular myths or beliefs relating to a particular place, activity, or group of people.
      ‘Hollywood folklore’
      • ‘Hurston's ethnography of African American folklore and folkways was published in 1935.’
      • ‘Jewish folklore suggests it adds strength while fasting.’
      • ‘In Bulgarian folklore tradition, masked games serve as ritual blessings for good health, fertility and well-being.’
      • ‘The scoreline shook the rugby world and gave Otley an indelible place in rugby union folklore.’
      • ‘Expect plenty of Russian folklore and myth and a chance to sing Russian Christmas song Father First.’
      • ‘Probably the most well-known twentieth-century trickster, Shine is an epic figure in African American folklore.’
      • ‘Devi's life story, which has revolved around caste conflicts, has entered Indian folklore.’
      • ‘Her favourite Bulgarian band is D2, and she has an ear for the tunes of traditional Bulgarian folklore.’
      • ‘In any case the cricket folklore among this cricket crazy populace stands to be enriched.’
      • ‘Two popular supernatural figures in Iraqi folklore are the Tanttel and the Su'luwwa.’
      • ‘The album's tracks are a contemporary interpretation of Bulgarian folklore and Orthodox music.’
      • ‘In American folklore, however, the same activity is associated with modern Greeks.’
      • ‘There is no doubt had he been given the opportunity, he would have written himself into Australian cricket folklore.’
      • ‘They will also be claiming a place in football folklore.’
      • ‘Dazzling feats from the turbo-charged toes of Michael Owen have yielded many unforgettable moments in football folklore.’
      • ‘It was not widely supported when it began, but because of the way its leaders were treated, it has passed into Irish folklore.’
      • ‘African folklore has extolled water in the highest esteem.’
      • ‘Narratives in the Bible and Native American folklore are prime examples.’
      • ‘It consists of a systematic survey of the lake monster theme in the legends and popular folklore of Québec.’
      • ‘With that one remarkable delivery Warne has carved his name in cricket folklore.’


Mid 19th century: from folk + lore.