sob story

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sob story (plural sob stories)

  1. (idiomatic) A sad story, especially one intended to elicit sympathy.
    • 1922, Upton Sinclair, They call Me Carpenter, ch. 14:
      "Dis picture is called De Tale o' Two Cities, and it's de French revolution. It's about a feller vot takes anodder feller's place and gits his head cut off; and say, dere's a sob story in it vot's a vunder."
    • 2006, Keith Donohue, The Stolen Child, →ISBN, p. 56:
      Mr. Martin objected at first to the bastardization of my talent, but I gave him a sob story about needing money for lessons.