Pronunciation: (pru-vûr'bē-ul),[key] —adj. 1. of, pertaining to, or characteristic of a proverb: proverbial brevity. 2. expressed in a proverb or proverbs: proverbial wisdom. 3. of the nature of or resembling a proverb: proverbial sayings. 4. having been made the subject of a proverb: the proverbial barn door which is closed too late. 5. having become an object of common mention or reference: your proverbial inability to get anywhere on time.