Take the 2-minute tour ×
English Language & Usage Stack Exchange is a question and answer site for linguists, etymologists, and serious English language enthusiasts. It's 100% free, no registration required.

What does the term "legend has it" specifically mean? Does it just mean "There is a legend which says...", or does it mean "There is a legend which is actually accurate in saying..."?

My understanding is that a legend "has it" when it's factually accurate. Is this correct?

share|improve this question
add comment

4 Answers 4

up vote 4 down vote accepted

"[Legend] has it" in this usage simply means says or states.

It could be expanded to "has it down as", or is probably best rephrased as has already been stated as "according to [legend]".

share|improve this answer
add comment

It means "according to legend" and has no bearing on accuracy. It's similar to saying "rumor has it."

share|improve this answer
    
+1: Although, as some of the other answerers mentioned, the fact that you're calling it a "legend" does mean that you have your doubts about its accuracy. (otherwise you wouldn't be classifying it as "legend") –  advs89 Apr 3 '11 at 22:59
add comment

My understanding, from most of the usage I have seen, is that it means the former. As in, "...a legend which says...". However, I think the phrase is most often used for popular legends.

share|improve this answer
add comment

In terms of truthfulness, it only implies that other people would corroborate the story. In other words, you say it in place of the more desperate, "I am not making this up!". It does not imply factuality.

share|improve this answer
add comment

Your Answer

 
discard

By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.