ancient

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ancient history

slang Something that is very outdated or totally forgotten (often in favor of a more recent development). Oh, Jack is ancient history, we broke up weeks ago! Her interest in photography is ancient history now that she's started doing yoga.
See also: ancient, history

(as) ancient as the hills

Very old. Oh, she's ancient as the hills, she can't hear us. Why don't we ever sing new songs? Those hymns are as ancient as the hills.
See also: ancient, hill

the Ancient of Days

A name for the Christian God, as used in Daniel 7:9 in the Bible. So many people get lost in the consumer frenzy of Christmas that they forget to celebrate it as the moment when the Ancient of Days came to Earth in human form.
See also: ancient, days, of

ancient history

Fig. someone or something from so long ago as to be completely forgotten or no longer important, as a former relationship. Bob? I never think about Bob anymore. He's ancient history. His interest in joining the army is now ancient history.
See also: ancient, history

ancient history

A past event, as in She's talking about her sea voyage, but that's ancient history, or And then there was his divorce, but you don't want to hear ancient history. This hyperbolic idiom transfers the field of ancient history to a much-repeated tale.
See also: ancient, history

the ancient of Days

a biblical title for God, taken from Daniel 7:9.
See also: ancient, days, of

ancient (or old) as the hills

of very long standing or very great age.
Hills are used in the Bible as a metaphor for permanence.
See also: ancient, hill

ancient history

n. someone or something completely forgotten, especially past romances. (see also history.) That business about joining the army is ancient history.
See also: ancient, history
References in classic literature ?
The ancient historians all employed one and the same method to describe and seize the apparently elusive- the life of a people.
Instead of the former divinely appointed aims of the Jewish, Greek, or Roman nations, which ancient historians regarded as representing the progress of humanity, modern history has postulated its own aims- the welfare of the French, German, or English people, or, in its highest abstraction, the welfare and civilization of humanity in general, by which is usually meant that of the peoples occupying a small northwesterly portion of a large continent.
They were the spike and ornaments of an ancient German helmet.
We dug about for a short time with our cutlasses until I became convinced that a city had stood upon the spot at some time in the past, and that beneath our feet, crumbled and dead, lay ancient Devonport.
For a moment, as the three parties stood together in the ancient temple, in the glare of many torches, no one spoke.
Suffice it to say that means were at once taken to get the golden image out of the cave of the ancient city.
The ancients well understood the utility of a communication between the Red Sea and the Mediterranean for their commercial affairs: but they did not think of digging a canal direct, and took the Nile as an intermediate.
Well, Captain, what the ancients dared not undertake, this junction between the two seas, which will shorten the road from Cadiz to India, M.
It was a dug-out, as ancient and dilapidated as its owner, and, in order to get into it without capsizing, Daughtry wet one leg to the ankle and the other leg to the knee.
The ancient obediently dipped his paddle and started pottering an erratic course in the general direction of the cluster of lights that marked the Makambo.
About daylight we passed Shiloh, where the Ark of the Covenant rested three hundred years, and at whose gates good old Eli fell down and "brake his neck" when the messenger, riding hard from the battle, told him of the defeat of his people, the death of his sons, and, more than all, the capture of Israel's pride, her hope, her refuge, the ancient Ark her forefathers brought with them out of Egypt.
We halted a moment at the ancient Fountain of Beira, but its stones, worn deeply by the chins of thirsty animals that are dead and gone centuries ago, had no interest for us--we longed to see Jerusalem.
Thus it comes that ancient and extinct genera are often in some slight degree intermediate in character between their modified descendants, or between their collateral relations.
The Kendal green, though its date is more ancient, ought surely to be as dear to our feelings, as the variegated tartans of the north.
The deep deposit of dust which he had noticed upon the blocks as he had first removed them from the wall had convinced him that even if the present occupants of the ancient pile had knowledge of this hidden passage they had made no use of it for perhaps generations.