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a phrase that attracts or is meant to attract attention.
a phrase, as a slogan, that comes to be widely and repeatedly used, often with little of the original meaning remaining.
Contemporary Examples

For those wondering, this vanishing middle ground is where the book gets its catch-phrase title.
Welcome to Tyler Cowen’s Future of Genius Machines Robert Herritt September 16, 2013

“Mean Girls” is the catch-phrase du jour, with a new breed of “expert” looking to cash in.
What Makes Mean Girls Tick Jessica Bennett August 11, 2011

Historical Examples

When the Swiss invented a catch-phrase they did not drop it in a hurry.
William Tell Told Again P. G. Wodehouse

There was never a catch-phrase, “Have you seen the French President?”
If I May A. A. Milne

Simpson had mentioned the situation so many times that it had become a catch-phrase with us.
Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 146, April 1, 1914 Various

The reader is never allowed to forget the catch-phrase of Micawber or the moral look of Pecksniff.
Materials and Methods of Fiction Clayton Hamilton

a well-known frequently used phrase, esp one associated with a particular group, etc


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  • Catch red-handed

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