• to have had a wonderful past but no present or future in the field
  • to have crossed the peak growth period
  • to have ripped already and have no further scope

Example Sentences

  1. The company is now just a has-been.
  2. I do not need to learn the tricks of my trade from a has-been.
  3. You are has-been and should now learn to listen to the people who are in-charge.
  4. A has-been will not know how to get past such a tricky situation.
  5. You think I am a has-been in this field but that is not true.
  6. My dad has-been the best but those were different times.
  7. You know nobody is going to listen to a has-been in the industry, right?
  8. I know what a has-been you are! You are cheating people by telling them that you are still in business and just as popular because you are not!
  9. Has-beens should move out of the industry so that new people get their chance too.


The phrase has been in existence since the 18th century and has become popular in use for actresses whose careers are over. The origin is speculated to be set within the glamour industry where when a career is over, the person becomes a “has-been” and is pretty much discarded. It is crude human behaviour and one which makes the fashion and glamour industry cold and heartless.

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Idiom of the Day

axe to grind

Meaning: have a private or selfish reason for doing something

Example: He should not become the chairman of the committee as he has too many axes of his own to grind. Read on


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