campus legend

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campus legend (plural campus legends)

  1. A widely circulated apocryphal or untrue story pertaining to people, events, or places on the campus of an educational institution, often having elements of humour or horror.
    The story that the library is sinking because the architect forgot to allow for the weight of the books is an old campus legend.
    • 1951, Howard Mumford Jones, "With the Technicians: The Founders of Phi Beta Kappa," The Journal of Higher Education, vol 22 no 7 (Oct), pp. 381-385.
      In campus legend, the grind, the non-athletic boy, the unattractive girl, are popularly associated with Phi Beta Kappa, but the caricature cannot be justified.
  2. A person who is renowned within a particular educational institution.
    The student union president's fearless protests made her a campus legend.
    • 1982, Jan Harold Brunvand, "Obituary: Richard M. Dorson (1916-1981)", Journal of American Folklore, vol 95 no 377 (July), pp. 347-353.
      When I had my first exposure to Dorson at MSU in his undergraduate American Folklore course in fall quarter 1954, he had become a campus legend.

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