From Longman Dictionary of Contemporary Englishrumourru‧mour British English, rumor American English /ˈruːmə $ -ər/ ●●○ noun [countable, uncountable] 1 RUMOUR/RUMORSAYinformation or a story that is passed from one person to another and which may or may not be truerumour about/of I’ve heard all sorts of rumours about him and his secretary.rumour that There’s an unsubstantiated rumour that Eddie is bankrupt.2 → the rumour millCOLLOCATIONSverbsa rumour spreadsA rumour spread that he had been killed.a rumour goes around (also a rumour circulates formal) (=a rumour is passed among people)There are a lot of rumors going around that they’re going to sell the company.Not long afterwards, ugly rumours began to circulate.rumour has it (=it is being said)Rumour has it that they plan to get married.rumours fly around (=are talked about by a lot of people)There were wild rumours flying around the office on Wednesday.hear a rumourI heard a rumour that she was leaving.spread a rumourSomeone has been spreading rumours about us.deny a rumourHe is denying rumors that he plans to drop out of the race.confirm a rumour (=say that it is true)The actor’s agent would not confirm the rumour.adjectivesfalse/unfounded He says that the rumours are completely unfounded.False rumors began to spread that troops were massing on the border.rumours are rife (=are talked about by a lot of people)Rumours were rife that the band had refused to play.a widespread rumourThe arrests followed widespread rumours of police corruption.a persistent rumour (=one that keeps being repeated for a long time)Despite persistent rumours of an affair, his wife stood by him.a strong rumour (=a rumour that is likely to be true)There is a strong rumour that the government is planning to drop the idea.a wild rumour (=one that is completely untrue)It has been a week of wild rumour and exaggeration. a malicious rumour (=a false one that someone spreads to make trouble)The claims were dismissed by the government as ‘malicious rumours’.an ugly/nasty rumour (=a rumour about something bad)Ugly rumours persisted that there had been a cover-up.an unsubstantiated rumour (=one that has not been proved to be true)These are only unsubstantiated rumours.a scurrilous rumour formal (=a damaging and false rumour)Journalists spread scurrilous rumours about the school.wild rumours (=rumours that are not likely to be true)This led to wild rumours of American involvement in the attack.COMMON ERRORS ► Don’t say ‘a rumour spreads out’. Say a rumour spreads. THESAURUSrumour British English, rumor American English noun [countable, uncountable] information or a story that is passed from one person to another and which may or may not be trueThe band denied the rumours that they may be splitting up.The truth finally came out after months of rumour.I’ve heard rumours about a ghost in the building.speculation noun [uncountable] a situation in which a lot of people are talking about something that is happening, especially something that is happening in politics or public life, and trying to guess what the truth isThere was a great deal of speculation about a possible merger involving Belgium’s largest banks.The report fuelled speculation (=caused more speculation) that he was about to resign.His future as a player has been the subject of intense speculation.gossip noun [uncountable] things that people say about what they think has happened in other people’s private lives, which is usually not trueShe tells me all the latest gossip from the office.The magazine was full of gossip about celebrities.You shouldn’t believe every piece of gossip you hear.talk noun [uncountable] something that people talk about a lot but which is not officialThe government has dismissed talk of a military strike on the country.There’s been a lot of talk of him resigning.hearsay noun [uncountable] something that you have heard from someone else, but cannot prove whether it is true or untrue – often used in legal contextsAll the accounts were based on hearsay rather than eye-witness reports.hearsay evidence
Examples from the Corpusrumour• Rumour has it that there will be major job cuts in the new year.• The possibility of penal cancellation charges in the public domain is a rumour.• I don't think he's going to resign. It's only a rumour.• Their untrained but nervous eyes, and rumour, vastly exaggerated both the ferocity and size of the advancing army.• Despite his wonderfully unattractive and humourless appearance, his exotic origins none the less gave rise to an extraordinary rumour.• You find there's nothing to it, a false rumour.• Bored dowagers with wisps snuggling on the shoulders, whispering flattery and malicious rumour in their perfectly sculpted ears.• Someone's been spreading nasty rumours about me.• The truth finally came out after months of rumour and gossip.• I report what I feel, as well as the rumour that is spreading.• The band denied the rumours that they may be splitting up.• Have you heard the rumour about him and his secretary?• If possible, track the rumour back to its origin.• What's this rumour about you and Vince Foster?• There were rumours of bombings in the northern part of the country.rumour that• There is even a rumour that a hardy blue variety will be unveiled.• It only takes a whisper of a rumour that a delivery is imminent, and cars flock to the garage.• The book just mentioned also gave rise to a rumour that Richard Baxter was about to conform.• Any truth in the rumour that Amanda's legs are going to star in a revival of Open All Hours?• There is no truth in the rumour that this tactic is being used to keep the critics at bay.• That has given momentum to the rumour that Merson and Graham clashed verbally over the player's weight on Monday.From Longman Business Dictionaryrumourru‧mour /ˈruːmə-ər/ British English, rumor American English noun [countable, uncountable] information that is passed from one person to another and which may or may not be trueA spokesman denied rumours that the company was considering abandoning the U.S. market.