The definition of a cliché is an often repeated or used phrase or statement that has been used so much it has become trite and kind of meaningless.
An example of a cliché is the expression of "walk a mile in another's shoes."
- A trite or overused expression or idea: “Even while the phrase was degenerating to cliché in ordinary public use &ellipsis; scholars were giving it increasing attention” (Anthony Brandt).
- A person or character whose behavior is predictable or superficial: “There is a young explorer &ellipsis; who turns out not to be quite the cliche expected” (John Crowley).
Origin of clicheFrench, past participle of clicher, to stereotype (imitative of the sound made when the matrix is dropped into molten metal to make a stereotype plate).
- The alternative spelling cliche may be used without confusion, as there is no other word in English with this spelling. (Contrast résumé, resumé.)
NounSee also: cliche
- Informal form of cliché.