Myths and more…

This lesson will help you define tale, myth, legend, superstition, fairy tale, urban myth, hoax, parable, fable and anecdote.

(a) tale  noun  a story that might be invented or difficult to believe

  • He told us a tale about buying a white castle.

(a) myth  noun  a traditional story about gods, heroes, and magic

  • Medusa isn’t a myth. I met her last week – what a woman!

(a) legend  noun  an old story, often not true, about famous people and events in the past

  • The legend of King Arthur and his broken sword has been made into many films.

(a) superstition  noun  the belief that magic or luck can affect your life

  • I wonder if black cats have superstitions about humans?

(a) fairy tale  noun  a traditional children’s story in which magic things happen

  • Reading your favourite fairy tale can bring back happy memories.

(an) urban myth  noun  a modern story that is not true but is often repeated, and believed by many to be true

  • The urban myth about a crocodile coming out of the sewers has been retold in many countries.

(a) hoax  noun  a story to deceive someone, such as when someone deliberately tells people that something bad is going to happen or that something is true when it is not

  • Stories about aliens visiting earth are obviously hoaxes, … aren’t they?

(a) parable  noun  a short, simple story that teaches or explains a moral or religious idea

  • Many parables from India seem to about tigers being wise.

(a) fable  noun  a traditional story about animals that teaches a moral lesson

  • This fable teaches us that if you have everything you should be happy with it.

(an) anecdote  noun  a short funny or interesting story about a real event or person

  • His anecdote will not be forgotten quickly.

Now watch the video lesson.