Definition of mythical in English:



  • 1Occurring in or characteristic of myths or folk tales.

    ‘one of Denmark's greatest mythical heroes’
    • ‘Incidentally, the ancients had another cause for being grateful to this mythical hero.’
    • ‘Even the country's national symbol - the dragon - is a mythical beast.’
    • ‘Their entire surfaces were carved with mythical beasts and classic Viking patterns.’
    • ‘According to one legend, a mythical hero named Bochica introduced culture and civilization to the people living around Bogotá.’
    • ‘I recognize that another current movie has done well by inventing a language for mythical beings, but is it really necessary that the vampires talk in vampirish?’
    • ‘The Gorgon was a mythical creature who portrayed the darkest aspects of the feminine: revenge, hatred, lust for power, bitterness and self hatred.’
    • ‘They represented deities, mythical creatures, imaginary beasts, and recognizable fauna imbued with symbolic meanings.’
    • ‘In China, the unicorn is a symbol of perfect goodness - a mythical beast with a lifespan of a thousand years.’
    • ‘One corner had the Chinese symbol for fire, the other something that looked like part of a mythical beast.’
    • ‘Like the mythical phoenix, which arose in its own ashes, the ram was chosen as a natural symbol of resurrection because of its ability, when shorn, to replenish its stock of wool.’
    • ‘She was teased up to the age of 7 because she used to believe in monsters and mythical beasts.’
    • ‘Yet another use of a grotesque image can be seen in the carvings of two mythical beasts that perch on top of the great medieval cathedral of Notre Dame in Paris, France.’
    • ‘I had always thought that the Centaur was a mythical beast, but obviously the Greek aristocracy know where to find them.’
    • ‘Ivory statues of mythical beasts with emerald eyes lined the way.’
    • ‘What myth is being alluded to and what is the name of the mythical horse so raised?’
    • ‘The school was named after a mythical creature in the hope it would appeal to youngsters at the school.’
    • ‘All sorts of things have inspired names for performance cars over the years, from animals and winds to exotic locations, mythical beasts and motor racing personalities.’
    • ‘Only subsequently did it go back to Europa, the mythical princess abducted by Zeus.’
    • ‘I would search for other mythical beasts like him.’
    • ‘That night I found myself staring at a carved masterpiece that decorated the ceiling, with snarling beasts and mythical creatures.’
    legendary, mythological, fabled, fabulous, folkloric, fairy-tale, storybook, chimerical
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    1. 1.1Idealized, especially with reference to the past.
      ‘a mythical age of contentment and social order’
      • ‘Instead he recalls a mythical past of gentlemanly villains with hearts of gold.’
      • ‘He sees too many journalists as focused on a mythical past when things were better, at least in hindsight.’
      • ‘They crave books which confirm mythical notions of a magnificent past, in which villains and heroes are clearly drawn in black and white.’
      • ‘Most anthropologists would recognize much writing about community in public health as idealized if not mythical.’
      • ‘Many call for a retreat to a mythical past when, they claim, national governments regulated and controlled the economy in the interests of all.’
      • ‘He spent the rest of his life creating a mythical past to fill the void.’
      • ‘Contemporary Dutch teams should be judged on their own merits and not allowed to bask in the reflected glory of a mythical past.’
      • ‘His protest involves, however, no retreat into a mythical golden age and sternly rejects any hints of aestheticism.’
      • ‘It's a story that occurs in what many of us take to be the mythical past - so what does it have to tell us today?’
      • ‘The next day after the demonstration class, we discussed his modern interpretation of the mythical past and of a cult figure.’
      • ‘We cannot go back to a mythical golden age of a white Christian society ruled by British law and traditions.’
      • ‘The anti-capitalism of the protesters on the streets of Seattle represented not the old dream of human liberation, but a fear of the future and a determination to flee back into a mythical past.’
      • ‘We are not going to turn back the clock to a, probably mythical, Golden Age.’
      • ‘We know that we cannot return to some mythical time in the past when nature was in balance, and static.’
      • ‘Advocates of this doctrine did not propose a ‘return’ to some mythical American past.’
      • ‘It is burdensome if the twenty-first century primitive artist is supposed to have escaped the march of history to help the rest of us treasure some mythical past.’
      • ‘To say that, I recognise, is to risk appearing as a reactionary, someone constantly harking back to a mythical golden age.’
      • ‘This knee-jerk nostalgia for nursing's mythical golden age simply will not do.’
      • ‘All going well, it could be the perfect antidote to those who are insisting that we return to some mythical, homogenised past.’
      • ‘Television thus becomes a cultural and historical watershed allowing people to create a mythical past.’
      fabled, heroic, ancient, traditional, fairy-tale, storybook, romantic, mythological
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    2. 1.2Fictitious.
      ‘a mythical customer whose name appears in brochures promoting the bank's services’
      • ‘These stories are inventive and mythical, but never frightening - in fact, it is their slightly humorous quality that lends them much of their charm.’
      • ‘And rightly have they named the experience Xanadu, the mythical land where the wildest fantasy comes true.’
      • ‘Happily, we don't have to invent this mythical band as the Sadies fit the bill pretty neatly.’
      • ‘That is a mythical invention of judges, who were forced to invent something to cope with some political compromises put through by David Lange.’
      • ‘The event might be entirely mythical but if the myth expresses a true relationship, then for us it is as valuable as a factual incident.’
      • ‘Drug advertising uses strong imagery to fabricate mythical associations between medical conditions and branded drugs.’
      • ‘A couple of years ago the Disney Channel invented this on-air mythical place called Zoog Disney.’
      • ‘The mythical plumber has been named Piotr and is very dangerous.’
      • ‘Whatever happened to the days when TV shows used mythical place names?’
      • ‘The Curmudgeon is a satirical column based on fictitious characters in a mythical village.’
      • ‘The heroes are mythical figures, but they are also real.’
      imaginary, fictitious, make-believe, fantasy, fanciful, invented, fabricated, made-up, unreal, untrue, non-existent
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