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90s Slang You Should Know


[haz-bin] /ˈhæzˌbɪn/
a person or thing that is no longer effective, successful, popular, etc.
Origin of has-been
First recorded in 1600-10 Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for has-been
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I'm fully aware, now that the war is ended, that as a has-been General who rose from the ranks, I have no marketable value.

    The Kingdom Round the Corner Coningsby Dawson
  • "We haven't a has-been in the bunch," asserted Silence quietly.

    Frank Merriwell's Son Burt L. Standish
  • Not when he is forty years old and knows that already he is a 'has-been.'

    The Fiction Factory John Milton Edwards
  • "Be careful, and don't make me a has-been," David cautioned.

    To Him That Hath Leroy Scott
  • Returned home, and friendly received in his high rank of a “has-been” and “recovered” prodigal?

    Walter Pieterse Multatuli
  • The Will-be and the has-been touch us more nearly than the Is.

  • The other player—the has-been—looked at Joes extended hand a moment as if in doubt.

  • If you don't, I can tell you that it's a fact; not a 'has-been', but an 'is'!

British Dictionary definitions for has-been


(informal) a person or thing that is no longer popular, successful, effective, etc
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Slang definitions & phrases for has-been



  1. A person who was once famous, successful, courted, etc, but is no longer so: Some hasbeens make spectacular comebacks (1786+)
  2. back number
The Dictionary of American Slang, Fourth Edition by Barbara Ann Kipfer, PhD. and Robert L. Chapman, Ph.D.
Copyright (C) 2007 by HarperCollins Publishers.
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