Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A small object, usually built to scale, that represents in detail another, often larger object.
  • noun A preliminary work or construction that serves as a plan from which a final product is to be made.
  • noun Such a work or construction used in testing or perfecting a final product.
  • noun A schematic description or representation of something, especially a system or phenomenon, that accounts for its properties and is used to study its characteristics.
  • noun A style or design of an item.
  • noun One serving as an example to be imitated or compared: synonym: ideal.
  • noun One that serves as the subject for an artist, especially a person employed to pose for a painter, sculptor, or photographer.
  • noun One that serves as the basis for a fictional character or place.
  • noun A person employed to display merchandise, such as clothing or cosmetics.
  • noun Zoology An animal whose appearance is copied by a mimic.
  • adjective Being, serving as, or used as a model.
  • adjective Worthy of imitation.
  • intransitive verb To make or construct a descriptive or representational model of.
  • intransitive verb To plan, construct, or fashion in imitation of a model.
  • intransitive verb To make by shaping a plastic substance.
  • intransitive verb To form (clay, for example) into a shape.
  • intransitive verb To display by wearing or posing in.
  • intransitive verb In painting, drawing, and photography, to give a three-dimensional appearance to, as by shading or highlighting.
  • intransitive verb To make a model.
  • intransitive verb To work or serve as a model, as in wearing clothes for display or serving as the subject of an artist.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun See the extract.
  • To form or plan according to a model; make conformable to a pattern or type; construct or arrange in a set manner.
  • To mold or shape on or as on a model; give form to by any means: as, to model a hat on a block; to model a ship; specifically, in drawing or painting, to give an appearance of natural relief to.
  • To make a model of; execute a copy or representation of; imitate in form: as, to model a figure in wax.
  • To make a model or models; especially, in the fine arts, to form a work of some plastic material: as, to model in wax.
  • To take the form of a model; assume a typical or natural appearance, or, in a drawing or painting, an appearance of natural relief.
  • noun A standard for imitation or comparison; anything that serves or may serve as a pattern or type; that with which something else is made to agree in form or character, or which is regarded as a fitting exemplar.
  • noun Specifically
  • noun A detailed pattern of a thing to be made; a representation, generally in miniature, of the parts, proportions, and other details to be copied in a complete production.
  • noun In the fine arts:
  • noun A living person who serves a painter or sculptor as the type of a figure he is painting or modeling, or poses for that purpose during the execution of the work; also, one who poses before a class to serve as an object to be drawn or painted.
  • noun In sculpture, also, an image in clay or plaster intended to be reproduced in stone or metal.
  • noun A canon, such as the sculptural canons of Polycletus and Lysippus, or the fancied rigid canons for the human form in ancient Egypt. See doryphorus and Lysippan.
  • noun A plan or mode of formation or constitution; type shown or manifested; typical form, style or method: as, to build a house on the model of a Greek temple; to form one's style on the model of Addison.
  • noun A mechanical imitation or copy of an object, generally on a miniature scale, designed to show its formation: as, a model of Jerusalem or of Cologne cathedral; a model of the human body.
  • noun Hence An exact reproduction; a facsimile.
  • noun An abbreviated or brief form. See module, 1.
  • Serving as a model.
  • Worthy to serve as a model or exemplar; exemplary: as, a model husband.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • transitive verb To plan or form after a pattern; to form in model; to form a model or pattern for; to shape; to mold; to fashion
  • noun A miniature representation of a thing, with the several parts in due proportion; sometimes, a facsimile of the same size.
  • noun Something intended to serve, or that may serve, as a pattern of something to be made; a material representation or embodiment of an ideal; sometimes, a drawing; a plan
  • noun Anything which serves, or may serve, as an example for imitation
  • noun That by which a thing is to be measured; standard.
  • noun Any copy, or resemblance, more or less exact.
  • noun A person who poses as a pattern for an artist.

Etymologies

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

[French modèle, from Italian modello, diminutive of modo, form, from Latin modus, measure, standard; see med- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Middle French modelle, from Italian modello, from Vulgar Latin modellus, diminutive form of modulus ("measure, standard"), diminutive of modus ("measure"); see mode, and compare module, modulus, mould, mold.

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Comments

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  • In my college life drawing classes, our instructor always asked the models to derobe. I suspect he meant disrobe. See Free Association.

    February 4, 2008