The Meaning of Anecdote: What It Is and How To Use It

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Have you ever heard someone tell a funny anecdote? What about a long, boring anecdote that never seemed to end? 

Today, our word of the day is the word anecdote. Keep reading to learn all about what an anecdote is and how to tell one.

What Does Anecdote Mean?

Dictionary states that an anecdote is a noun that refers to a short story or account of an event. Usually, an anecdote is an interesting story, but it can also be a short historical account. The pronunciation of anecdote is ˈænɪkdəʊt.

Sometimes, a version of the word anecdote is used in crime. According to NCBI, anecdotal evidence is a type of evidence using a person’s account, experiences, or observations, as opposed to hard evidence like facts or statistics.

What Is the Etymology of Anecdote?

According to Dictionary, the word anecdote entered the English language between 1670 and 1680. This word comes from the New Latin anecdota and French anecdotes, which come from the Late Greek and Greek anékdota

This is a word that means “things that are unpublished” and refers to a set of unpublished memories of Theodora and Justinian by Procopius. It comes from the neutral plural form of anékdotos, from ékdotos, ekdidónai, and didonai.

How Can We Use Anecdote in a Sentence?

Anecdote is a fairly common word that you might hear in your daily life. Below, you will find several example sentences that contain the word anecdote. 

After studying these examples of anecdotes, try using the word anecdote in your own sentences today!

Example #1

In the courtroom, the witness gave a personal anecdote about what he saw at the scene. The short account convinced the jury that the man was guilty.

Example #2

At the company’s happy hour, the coworkers told amusing anecdotes to each other, reminiscing on all of the fun times they had together at the office.

Example #3

The child’s anecdotal evidence that he saw the other child push someone on the playground was not enough to get him in trouble. It was merely an account of an incident, which no one else could back up.

Example #4

On their date, the two people told each other humorous anecdotes. With each funny story, they grew closer and began to like each other more and more. 

Example #5

The man thought the rest of the people enjoyed his funny anecdotes, but with each amusing story, they grew more and more bored. They all thought the man was self-centered. 

What Are Translations of Anecdote?

In many languages and cultures, anecdotes are a way to learn about other people and connect with one another. To learn how to say the word anecdote in another language, you can reference this list of translations of anecdote from Nice Translator.

If you are learning another language or are trying to communicate with people in other countries, knowing how to say the word anecdote can be very helpful. Do you have anecdotes that you enjoy telling other people?

  • Croatian: anegdota
  • Chinese (Taiwan): 軼事
  • Korean: 일화
  • Malayalam: കൂരസെഡ്
  • Polish: anegdota
  • Bulgarian: анекдот
  • Welsh: hanecdot
  • Spanish: anécdota
  • Finnish: anekdootti
  • Dutch: anekdote
  • Portuguese (Brazil): anedota
  • Basque: pasadidoa
  • Tamil: குறிப்பு
  • Slovak: anekdota
  • Chinese (PRC): 轶事
  • Serbian: анегдоте
  • Hungarian: anekdota
  • Icelandic: anecdote
  • Czech: anekdota
  • Estonian: anekdoot
  • Amharic: አኒዲድ
  • Vietnamese: giai thoại
  • Urdu: کہانی
  • French: anecdote
  • Romanian: anecdotă
  • Bengali: উপাখ্যান
  • Swahili: anecdote
  • Italian: aneddoto
  • Indonesian: anekdot
  • Catalan: anècdota
  • Gujarati: હથિયાર
  • Russian: анекдот
  • Malay: anekdot
  • Lithuanian: anekdotas
  • Norwegian: anekdote
  • Greek: ανέκδοτο
  • Telugu: వృత్తాంతం
  • Hebrew: אֲנֶקדוֹטָה
  • Portuguese (Portugal): anedota
  • Arabic: حكاية طريفة
  • Thai: เรื่องเล็ก ๆ น้อย ๆ
  • Latvian: anekdote
  • Swedish: anekdot
  • Filipino: anekdota
  • Kannada: ಉಪಾಕೃತ
  • Slovenian: anekdota
  • Marathi: किस्सा
  • Hindi: उपाख्यान
  • Danish: anekdote
  • German: Anekdote
  • Japanese: 逸話
  • Ukrainian: анекдот
  • Turkish: anekdot

What Are Synonyms of Anecdote?

The word anecdote has a neutral connotation. An anecdote can be interesting or boring, happy or sad. If you are looking for a word that has the same meaning as the word anecdote but a different connotation, you can look at this list of synonyms of the word anecdote from Power Thesaurus

Try deciphering which of these words have a positive connotation, which have a negative connotation, and which are neutral. 

  • account
  • allegory
  • chronicle
  • epic
  • episode
  • fable
  • fairy tale
  • fiction
  • history
  • incident
  • joke
  • legend
  • narration
  • narrative
  • parable
  • recital
  • reminiscence
  • saga
  • short story
  • sketch
  • stories
  • story
  • tale
  • tall tale
  • yarn

What Are Antonyms of Anecdote?

If something is not an anecdote, it is a fact or a piece of evidence. To learn about all of the words that mean the opposite of the word anecdote, take a look at this list of antonyms of the word anecdote from Power Thesaurus. If you are trying to imply that something is not merely an anecdote but rather truth or fact, this list will be very helpful.

  • accuracy
  • actuality
  • actually
  • assurance
  • assuredness
  • authenticity
  • axiom
  • certainty
  • certitude
  • circumstance
  • confidence
  • conviction
  • detail
  • event
  • evidence
  • happening
  • incident
  • occurrence
  • point
  • reality
  • reliance
  • sureness
  • thing
  • truth
  • verity


The definition of anecdote (ˈæn ɪkˌdoʊt) is a noun that means a short account of an event or a short story. Sometimes, you can find the adjective form of the word anecdote, anecdotal, used to describe evidence that is based on personal experiences and not facts. 

Do you have anecdotes or fun stories you like to share with people? Many people form connections with others through sharing anecdotes, sharing memories, and finding common ground. Storytelling and sharing anecdotes have been a way for people to pass down memories for centuries and are a part of human nature.


Anecdote synonyms – 107 Words and Phrases for Anecdote | Power Thesaurus 

Fact synonyms – 1 122 Words and Phrases for Fact | Power Thesaurus 

Anecdote Definition & Meaning | 

The weakness of one – Smart Health Choices | NCBI Bookshelf

Anecdote | Nice Translator