a tall tale


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tall tale

A greatly exaggerated or particularly imaginative story or account of something, such that it is difficult to believe. My uncle has always been fond of telling tall tales about his time overseas. I used to believe him when I was a kid, but now I've learned to just laugh along.
See also: tale, tall

a tall tale

BRITISH, AMERICAN or

a tall story

BRITISH
COMMON A tall tale or a tall story is a very exciting or extreme event that someone tells you about but that you think is probably not true. He was very convincing, and some of his college chums believed his tall tales. `She told my guests a tall story about our relationship,' he said. `She claimed we'd been in love three years.' Note: `Tall' used to be used to describe language that was considered extremely formal or exaggerated.
See also: tale, tall
References in periodicals archive ?
A tall tale about real people: Red Liz (Queen Elizabeth I) captures pirate Granny O'Malley's son, and Granny goes to London to rescue him in a sparkling scene of manners and mores.
Anglers love a tall tale, so it's entirely appropriate that Allan Sekula's monumental photo cycle "Fish Story" has been a talking point since its appearance at last summer's Documenta 11.