• synonyms


[fey-buh ld]
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  1. celebrated in fables: a fabled goddess of the wood.
  2. having no real existence; fictitious: a fabled chest of gold.
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Origin of fabled

First recorded in 1730–40; fable + -ed3
Related formsun·fa·bled, adjective


[fey-buh l]
  1. a short tale to teach a moral lesson, often with animals or inanimate objects as characters; apologue: the fable of the tortoise and the hare; Aesop's fables.
  2. a story not founded on fact: This biography is largely a self-laudatory fable.
  3. a story about supernatural or extraordinary persons or incidents; legend: the fables of gods and heroes.
  4. legends or myths collectively: the heroes of Greek fable.
  5. an untruth; falsehood: This boast of a cure is a medical fable.
  6. the plot of an epic, a dramatic poem, or a play.
  7. idle talk: old wives' fables.
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verb (used without object), fa·bled, fa·bling.
  1. to tell or write fables.
  2. to speak falsely; lie: to fable about one's past.
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verb (used with object), fa·bled, fa·bling.
  1. to describe as if actually so; talk about as if true: She is fabled to be the natural daughter of a king.
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Origin of fable

1250–1300; Middle English fable, fabel, fabul < Anglo-French, Old French < Latin fābula a story, tale, equivalent to fā(rī) to speak + -bula suffix of instrument
Related formsfa·bler, nounout·fa·ble, verb (used with object), out·fa·bled, out·fa·bling.un·fa·bling, adjective
Can be confusedfable legend myth (see synonym study at legend)

Synonyms for fable

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1. See legend.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for fabled

storied, mythical, famed, fictional, famous, fabulous, fanciful, unreal, mythological

Examples from the Web for fabled

Contemporary Examples of fabled

Historical Examples of fabled

British Dictionary definitions for fabled


  1. made famous in fable
  2. fictitious
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  1. a short moral story, esp one with animals as characters
  2. a false, fictitious, or improbable account; fiction or lie
  3. a story or legend about supernatural or mythical characters or events
  4. legends or myths collectivelyRelated adjective: fabulous
  5. archaic the plot of a play or of an epic or dramatic poem
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  1. to relate or tell (fables)
  2. (intr) to speak untruthfully; tell lies
  3. (tr) to talk about or describe in the manner of a fableghosts are fabled to appear at midnight
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Derived Formsfabler, noun

Word Origin for fable

C13: from Latin fābula story, narrative, from fārī to speak, say
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

Word Origin and History for fabled


c.1600, "unreal, invented," past participle adjective from fable (v.) "to tell tales" (late 14c.), from Old French fabler, from Latin fabulari, from fabula (see fable). Meaning "celebrated in fable" is from 1706.

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c.1300, "falsehood, lie, pretense," from Old French fable (12c.) "story, fable, tale; fiction, lie, falsehood," from Latin fabula "story, play, fable, narrative, account, tale," literally "that which is told," related to fari "speak, tell," from PIE root *bha- (2) "speak" (see fame (n.)). Sense of "animal story" (early 14c.) comes from Aesop. In modern folklore terms, defined as "a short, comic tale making a moral point about human nature, usually through animal characters behaving in human ways." Most trace to Greece or India.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper