from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Of or involving imitation.
  • adj. Not original; derivative.
  • adj. Tending to imitate.
  • adj. Onomatopoeic.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Imitating; copying; not original.
  • adj. Modelled after another thing.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Inclined to imitate, copy, or follow; imitating; exhibiting some of the qualities or characteristics of a pattern or model; dependent on example; not original
  • adj. Formed after a model, pattern, or original.
  • adj. Designed to imitate another species of animal, or a plant, or inanimate object, for some useful purpose, such as protection from enemies; having resemblance to something else
  • n. A verb expressive of imitation or resemblance.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Imitating or inclined to imitate or copy.
  • Aiming at imitation; exhibiting or designed to exhibit an imitation of a pattern or model.
  • Formed after or presenting a similitude of a model, pattern, or original.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. marked by or given to imitation
  • adj. (of words) formed in imitation of a natural sound
  • adj. not genuine; imitating something superior


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • He was even vexed at what I translated by the term imitative harmony.

    Frederic Chopin as a Man and Musician

  • “Let's designate this to be what we call the imitative art [mimêtikon]”; everything else in the large genus can go by some other name (267a).

    Plato's Aesthetics

  • “calloo-calloo” — a mimetic term imitative of the most frequent notes of the bird.

    My Tropic Isle

  • The so-called imitative status of PIE *pneu- to s...

    The trouble with the PIE 1st & 2nd person plural endings

  • The so-called imitative status of PIE *pneu- "to sneeze"

    The so-called imitative status of PIE *pneu- "to sneeze"

  • Paleoglot: The so-called imitative status of PIE *pneu- "to sneeze"

    The so-called imitative status of PIE *pneu- "to sneeze"

  • The types of techne that most resemble our modern concept of art are those that are “mimetic” or imitative, that is, that reproduce the look of an object or that express an idea in narrative or drama.

    Feminist Aesthetics

  • Poets working in what Plato called the imitative poetic media, epic and tragedy, were of course unable to reply in kind (though some passages of tragic lyric reflect a critical reaction to current philosophical speculation), but Pindar complained that the natural philosophers (tous physiologous) were 'harvesting the fruit of wisdom unripe.'

    The Theater of Ethics

  • Even when the Brussels influence was most direct the flowers and sprays were placed inartistically, while the scroll copies of the early Flemish schools can only be termed the imitative handiwork of a child.

    Chats on Old Lace and Needlework

  • A variant of linguistic associationism is the imitative, that is to say, the theory of the onomatopoeia, which the same philologists deride under the name of the "bow-wow" theory, after the imitation of the dog's bark, which, according to the onomatopoeists, gives its name to the dog.

    Aesthetic as Science of Expression and General Linguistic


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