alter ego

noun al·ter ego \ ˌȯl-tər-ˈē-(ˌ)gō also -ˈe-(ˌ)gō \
Updated on: 19 Nov 2017

Definition of alter ego

: a second self or different version of oneself: such as
a : a trusted friend
b : the opposite side of a personality
  • Clark Kent and his alter ego Superman
c : counterpart 3
  • a fictional character that is the author's alter ego

Examples of alter ego in a Sentence

  1. a trusted adviser who is the President's alter ego

  2. over the years the state's other senator became his alter ego as well as his political ally

Recent Examples of alter ego from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'alter ego.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

Did You Know?

In Latin, alter ego literally means "second I". An alter ego can be thought of as a person's clone or second self. A professional alter ego might be a trusted aide who knows exactly what the boss wants done. A personal alter ego might be a close friend who is almost like a twin. Alter ego can also refer to the second, hidden side of one's own self. In Robert Louis Stevenson's classic The Strange Case of Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, Dr. Jekyll is a good-hearted, honorable man; but after taking a potion, his alter ego, the loathsome and diabolical Mr. Hyde, takes over his personality.

Origin and Etymology of alter ego

Latin, literally, second I


ALTER EGO Defined for English Language Learners

alter ego

noun

Definition of alter ego for English Language Learners

  • : a different version of yourself

  • : a close friend who thinks or feels similarly to the way you think or feel


Law Dictionary

alter ego

noun al·ter ego \ ˈȯl-tər-ˈē-gō \

legal Definition of alter ego

: second self; especially : a person or entity vicariously liable for another (as an agent)
  • had the officer been the alter ego of the corporation
  • —J. J. White and R. S. Summers
— compare instrumentality
Note: The concept of a legal alter ego is used primarily to hold the controlling parties of a corporation personally liable instead of limiting liability to the corporate entity.

Origin and Etymology of alter ego

Latin, literally, second I



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