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proverbial

[pruh-vur-bee-uh l] /prəˈvɜr bi əl/
adjective
1.
of, relating to, or characteristic of a proverb:
proverbial brevity.
2.
expressed in a proverb or proverbs:
proverbial wisdom.
3.
of the nature of or resembling a proverb:
proverbial sayings.
4.
having been made the subject of a proverb:
the proverbial barn door which is closed too late.
5.
having become an object of common mention or reference:
your proverbial inability to get anywhere on time.
Origin of proverbial
late Middle English
1400-1450
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin prōverbiālis. See proverb, -al1
Related forms
proverbially, adverb
unproverbial, adjective
unproverbially, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for proverbially
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • I therefore lay these facts before you, an Englishman, knowing that a Briton's generosity and capabilities are proverbially equal.

    The Royal Mail James Wilson Hyde
  • Was not a Spaniard proverbially as quick to love as to jealousy?

  • Bad temper is proverbially infectious, and as soon as he was gone a scene of mutual recrimination ensued.

  • Servants are proverbially lavish and careless in this matter.

    The Young Maiden A. B. (Artemas Bowers) Muzzey
  • But the Butes, then, were proverbially notorious for their callousness and their ingratitude.

    Tobias Smollett Oliphant Smeaton
  • Time and Tide passed on—as they are proverbially said to do—without waiting for any one.

    Rivers of Ice R.M. Ballantyne
  • proverbially such acts belong to a policy that outwits itself.

    Sir William Wallace A. F. Murison
  • The Swedish and Finnish pilots are proverbially among the best in the world.

    The Land of Thor J. Ross Browne
  • "Regrets for what 'might have been' are proverbially idle," cries the historian from whom I have chiefly quoted.

    Albert Durer T. Sturge Moore
British Dictionary definitions for proverbially

proverbial

/prəˈvɜːbɪəl/
adjective
1.
(prenominal) commonly or traditionally referred to, esp as being an example of some peculiarity, characteristic, etc
2.
of, connected with, embodied in, or resembling a proverb
Derived Forms
proverbially, adverb
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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Word Origin and History for proverbially

proverbial

adj.

early 15c. (implied in proverbially.), from Late Latin proverbialis "pertaining to a proverb," from proverbium (see proverb).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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