, ) or cliche
is a phrase, expression, or idea that has been overused to the point of losing its intended force or novelty, especially when at some time it was considered distinctively forceful or novel. The term is most likely to be used in a negative context. It is frequently used in modern culture to reference an action or idea that is expected or predictable based on a prior event.
A cliché is also a term historically used in printing, for a printing plate cast from movable type
. This is also called a stereotype
. When letters were set one at a time it made sense to cast a phrase used over and again as one single slug of metal. That constantly repeated phrase was known as a cliché.
It is a cliché that most clichés are true, but then, like most clichés, that cliché is untrue.
— Stephen Fry
in his book Moab Is My Washpot