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noun \ˈtīp\

Simple Definition of type

  • : a particular kind or group of things or people

  • : a particular kind of person

  • : printed letters

Full Definition of type

  1. 1a :  a person or thing (as in the Old Testament) believed to foreshadow another (as in the New Testament)b :  one having qualities of a higher category :  modelc :  a lower taxonomic category selected as a standard of reference for a higher category; also :  a specimen or series of specimens on which a taxonomic species or subspecies is actually based

  2. 2 :  a distinctive mark or sign

  3. 3a (1) :  a rectangular block usually of metal bearing a relief character from which an inked print can be made (2) :  a collection of such blocks <a font of type> (3) :  alphanumeric characters for printing <the type for this book has been photoset>b :  typeface <italic type>c :  printed lettersd :  matter set in type

  4. 4a :  qualities common to a number of individuals that distinguish them as an identifiable class: as (1) :  the morphological, physiological, or ecological characters by which relationship between organisms may be recognized (2) :  the form common to all instances of a linguistic element b :  a typical and often superior specimenc :  a member of an indicated class or variety of people <the guests were mostly urban types — Lucy Cook>d :  a particular kind, class, or group <oranges of the seedless type> <leaders of the new type…did England yeoman's service — G. M. Trevelyan>e :  something distinguishable as a variety :  sort <what type of food do you like?>

Examples of type

  1. We were not prepared to face this type of crisis.

  2. We studied various types of trees.

  3. a seedless type of orange

  4. He only likes two types of music.

  5. She likes all types of books.

Origin of type

Middle English, from Late Latin typus, from Latin & Greek; Latin typus image, from Greek typos blow, impression, model, from typtein to strike, beat; akin to Sanskrit tupati he injures and probably to Latin stupēre to be benumbed

First Known Use: 15th century

Synonym Discussion of type

type, kind, sort, nature, description, character mean a number of individuals thought of as a group because of a common quality or qualities. type may suggest strong and clearly marked similarity throughout the items included so that each is typical of the group <one of three basic body types>. kind may suggest natural grouping <a zoo seemingly having animals of every kind>. sort often suggests some disparagement <the sort of newspaper dealing in sensational stories>. nature may imply inherent, essential resemblance rather than obvious or superficial likenesses <two problems of a similar nature>. description implies a group marked by agreement in all details belonging to a type as described or defined <not all acts of that description are actually illegal>. character implies a group marked by distinctive likenesses peculiar to the type <research on the subject so far has been of an elementary character>.

Rhymes with type




Simple Definition of type

  • : to write with a computer keyboard or typewriter

  • : to find out what group something is in

Full Definition of type


  1. transitive verb
  2. 1 :  to represent beforehand as a type :  prefigure

  3. 2a :  to produce a copy ofb :  to represent in terms of typical characteristics :  typify

  4. 3 :  to produce (as a character or document) using a keyboard (as on a typewriter or computer); also :  keyboard

  5. 4 :  to identify as belonging to a type: asa :  to determine the natural type of (as a blood sample)b :  typecast

  6. intransitive verb
  7. :  to write something on a typewriter or enter data into a computer by way of a keyboard

type·able play \ˈtī-pə-bəl\ adjective

Examples of type

  1. How fast can you type?

  2. I never learned how to type.

  3. She asked her secretary to type a memo.


First Known Use of type


Seen and Heard

What made you want to look up type? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


February 11, 2016

the holder of an office

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