Definition of mythos in US English:



  • 1A myth or mythology.

    • ‘A really obvious example of this happened when the Romans invaded Greece, and ultimately adopted a modified version of the Greek mythos.’
    • ‘Much of the traditional Arthurian mythos has simply been left out.’
    • ‘In this unique, austere interpretation of the Arthurian mythos, there isn't a shot or a camera movement that doesn't represent thought - and love.’
    • ‘The Vulcan of the Islamic mythos was named Jabr.’
    folk tale, story, folk story, legend, tale, fable, saga, allegory, parable, tradition, lore, folklore
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    1. 1.1 (in literature) a traditional or recurrent narrative theme or plot structure.
      • ‘For Frye this meant that there were four archetypal plot modes, or mythoi, that characterized Western literature.’
      • ‘As is well known, a powerful mythos surrounds this film, based on the popularity - with both black and white audiences - of the title character as well as the great financial success of the film.’
      • ‘This is the central mythos, the guiding narrative, of modernity of course.’
      • ‘This is the mythos of tragedy, combined with a glorious transcendence of conflict.’
      • ‘So don't be surprised if there are gaps and holes in the whole mythos stemming from the ‘prequels’.’
      storyline, story, chain of events, scenario, action, thread
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    2. 1.2 A set of beliefs or assumptions about something.
      ‘the rhetoric and mythos of science create the comforting image of linear progression toward truth’
      • ‘But the popular perception of Margaret as the woman who renounced the ‘man she loved’ for the sake of Church and Crown, was part and parcel of the royal mythos for over forty years.’
      • ‘The fact that she is on record as being sexually experimental simply feeds into that mythos.’
      • ‘I told them both about my crusade to spread the word of sustainability and debunk the mythos about long-haired, granola-eating folk that surrounds it.’
      • ‘The mythos about travel as something special is discussed in relation to seeking the foreign, plus the assumed positive effects of travel and its role in the civilizing process.’
      • ‘Really otherwise uninteresting people can be celebrities; it deconstructs the whole mythos.’


Mid 18th century: from Greek.