Guide to Literary Terms

Start Your Free Trial

Download Guide to Literary Terms Study Guide

Subscribe Now


Folklore - the long-standing and traditional beliefs, legends, and customs of a people. It is a general term for the verbal, spiritual, and material aspects of any culture that are transmitted orally, by observation, or by imitation, and passed on and preserved from generation to generation with constant variations shaped by memory, immediate need or purpose, and the degree of individual talent. Not only does folklore entertain, but it passes on the culture and behavior models of a people, which psychologist Carl Jung called “the collective unconscious.” Folklore is comprised of folk tales.

The term comes from Old English folc which became...

(The entire section is 200 words.)