has-been

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English[edit]

Pronunciation[edit]

Noun[edit]

has-been (plural has-beens)

  1. (pejorative) A person, especially one formerly popular or influential, who continues in their field after their popularity or effectiveness has peaked and is now in decline.
    • 1986 (Jan 6), John Gantz, "Things Look Better in the Long View", InfoWorld, 7 (52) / 8 (1), page 19
      I think Apple Computer is a has-been.
    • 2009, William Shatner, Up Till Now: The Autobiography, page 338
      Is it better to never be than to be and eventually become a has-been?

Usage notes[edit]

  • Typically said of professionals or celebrities whose prime is behind them.

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