- a short account of a particular incident or event, especially of an interesting or amusing nature.
- a short, obscure historical or biographical account.
Origin of anecdote
SynonymsSee more synonyms for anecdote on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for anecdotes
The plot was a string of anecdotes from the senseless shootings of friends that Brinsley knew.Alleged Cop Killer’s Blood-Soaked Screenplay
December 24, 2014
There was always time in our work sessions for stories and anecdotes.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days
December 13, 2014
The anecdotes all reveal something uncomfortably schizophrenic about our world…but even so: what has gotten into this woman?The Very Rich Should Divorce Very Quietly
November 6, 2014
Picasso, that volcanic talker, filled volumes with his anecdotes, aphorisms, and witticisms.Rackstraw Downes’s Art and Essays Are Two Sides of the Same Genius
June 4, 2014
I am like a human search engine of sentimental quotes and anecdotes.Read Jon Favreau’s Full Commencement Address to College of the Holy Cross
May 27, 2014
He hated to have to explain the points of his anecdotes, as, indeed, what story-teller does not?In the Midst of Alarms
These anecdotes have been related as proof that Dunmore desired Lewis beaten.Chronicles of Border Warfare
Alexander Scott Withers
Your anecdotes from Ad-Damiry and your quotations from Montaigne shall not help you.The Book of Khalid
Do you think the porter and the cook have no anecdotes, no experiences, no wonders for you?Essays, First Series
Ralph Waldo Emerson
His courtesy, his smartness, his anecdotes, his reminiscences were all Boredom.Sir Brook Fossbrooke, Volume I.
Charles James Lever
- a short usually amusing account of an incident, esp a personal or biographical one
Word Origin and History for anecdotes
1670s, "secret or private stories," from French anecdote (17c.) or directly from Greek anekdota "things unpublished," neuter plural of anekdotos, from an- "not" (see an-) + ekdotos "published," from ek- "out" + didonai "to give" (see date (n.1)).
Procopius' 6c. Anecdota, unpublished memoirs of Emperor Justinian full of court gossip, gave the word a sense of "revelation of secrets," which decayed in English to "brief, amusing stories" (1761).