Some dictionaries say that the word "story" as a general noun means "past, past event, part of what was before". Does it mean we can use it abstractly to mean "history, what is past" without an article? For instance:

  • Those ideas are story now.

Edit: I did a Google search and Google books check but didn't find any relevant examples of such usage, still I am eager to know if it is anyway possible to use "story" in place of "history" to describe something which is now past.

  • I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it's about a mishearing / mistranscription - story for history. Aug 28, 2018 at 17:19
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    @FumbleFingers I don't mishear or mistranscript, I'm no that dumb. I know what "history" means, I particularly asked about "story" in the same sense or meaning. Aug 28, 2018 at 17:21
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    I see two people have seen fit to upvote your comment, but it cuts no ice with me. You cite the usage as a "for instance", but provide no meaningful evidence that your example actually occurs in the real world. FWIW I've just searched Google Books for are story now, which returns just 7 hits. Of which the only one where I can read the context is some Filipino poet. Compare that to 2,370 hits for are history now. Aug 28, 2018 at 17:43
  • It would probably help if you specified which sense of "history" you are talking about here. History has many meanings and usages. "That is history" is a very specific usage.
    – Eddie Kal
    Aug 28, 2018 at 18:02
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    @FumbleFingers I'm interpreting the "for instance" as an example sentence SovereignSun made up themselves to illustrate a potential use case. It's not a "I've seen this - is it correct?" question, but instead a "From my limited knowledge of what this word means, I think I could create new sentences like this. Would I be correct in doing so?" -- I might ask SovereignSun to better reference the sources for the quoted definitions, but I don't think ELL should be limited to only "How to correctly read English" questions. "How to correctly write English" should be on topic, too.
    – R.M.
    Aug 28, 2018 at 20:38

2 Answers 2


No, to answer your question bluntly.

Those ideas are history now. [That's the idiomatic expression: to be history].

History has many stories to tell. In fact, much of history are accounts (or stories) told my historians or by people who have experienced some aspect of it. Some are true, others not.

  • The whole story of the JFK assassination is not yet known.
  • His war stories [accounts of what happened to him] are inspiring.
  • Agreed. Note that in these usages 'story' is a countable noun, and 'history' is not.
    – John Feltz
    Aug 28, 2018 at 17:18

While I agree that you can't use "story" as you're trying to, be aware of "storied":

1 : decorated with designs representing scenes from story or history a storied tapestry

2 : having an interesting history : celebrated in story or history a storied institution

In a stretch, you might be able to use "Those ideas are storied now". But be prepared to clarify what you mean.

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