copy

noun
\ ˈkä-pē How to pronounce copy (audio) \
plural copies

Definition of copy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : an imitation, transcript, or reproduction of an original work (such as a letter, a painting, a table, or a dress)
2 : one of a series of especially mechanical reproductions of an original impression also : an individual example of such a reproduction
3 archaic : something to be imitated : model
4a : matter to be set especially for printing
b : something considered printable or newsworthy used without an article remarks that make good copy— Norman Cousins
c : text especially of an advertisement
5 : duplicate sense 1a a copy of a computer file a copy of a gene

copy

verb
copied; copying; copies

Definition of copy (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to make a copy or duplicate of copy a document copy a computer file
2 : to model oneself on
3 in radio/military communications : to acknowledge receipt of (a message) The operator of the Titanic was busy figuring his accounts and did not bother to copy the message. A little later in the afternoon, another ship named the Baltic called the Titanic to tell her about icebergs that were in her way.— Rev. Robert P. Lawrence

intransitive verb

1 : to make a copy
2 : to undergo copying the map did not copy well
3 in radio/military communications : to acknowledge receipt and understanding of a message "Block the road with your car. Take no other action. … No resistance, do you copy? Over."— Stephen King

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Choose the Right Synonym for copy

Noun

reproduction, duplicate, copy, facsimile, replica mean a thing made to closely resemble another. reproduction implies an exact or close imitation of an existing thing. reproductions from the museum's furniture collection duplicate implies a double or counterpart exactly corresponding to another thing. a duplicate of a house key copy applies especially to one of a number of things reproduced mechanically. printed 1000 copies of the lithograph facsimile suggests a close reproduction often of graphic matter that may differ in scale. a facsimile of a rare book replica implies the exact reproduction of a particular item in all details a replica of the Mayflower but not always in the same scale. miniature replicas of classic cars

Verb

copy, imitate, mimic, ape, mock mean to make something so that it resembles an existing thing. copy suggests duplicating an original as nearly as possible. copied the painting and sold the fake as an original imitate suggests following a model or a pattern but may allow for some variation. imitate a poet's style mimic implies a close copying (as of voice or mannerism) often for fun, ridicule, or lifelike imitation. pupils mimicking their teacher ape may suggest presumptuous, slavish, or inept imitating of a superior original. American fashion designers aped their European colleagues mock usually implies imitation with derision. mocking a vain man's pompous manner

Verb

copy, imitate, and mimic mean to make something so that it resembles something else. copy means trying to duplicate a thing as much as possible. Copy this drawing exactly. imitate means that a person uses something as an example but does not try to make an exact copy. They imitated the actions of their parents. mimic means carefully copying something (as a person's voice) often for the purpose of making fun of it. The comedian mimicked a popular singer.

Examples of copy in a Sentence

Noun

The novel has sold more than a million copies. She got a job writing advertising copy. All copy must be submitted by 5 p.m.

Verb

She copied the design on a piece of paper. Copy the file to your hard drive. The bills are designed to prevent copying by counterfeiters. We caught him copying the answers out of the book. We caught him copying out of the book. The speech was copied word for word. His music was copied widely. Their competitors soon copied the idea.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

And L’Amour’s widow, daughter and even the family’s publishing attorney will attend to honor the late, great Western writer whose work has sold more than 325 million copies. John Wenzel, The Know, "From Stephen King to Helen Thorpe, Colorado Authors’ Hall of Fame honors literary legacy," 12 Sep. 2019 The English-language edition of the novel has sold more than 8 million copies worldwide. Alexandra Alter, New York Times, "‘I’m Too Old to Be Scared by Much’: Margaret Atwood on Her ‘Handmaid’s Tale’ Sequel," 5 Sep. 2019 Since then, copies have been popping up across town. USA TODAY, "Space dummy, Bigfoot denial, pumped-up pumpkin: News from around our 50 states," 2 Sep. 2019 His series of children’s books, The Chronicles of Narnia, has sold over 100 million copies in over 40 languages. Joseph Loconte, National Review, "C. S. Lewis: Oxford Don vs. the Devil," 31 Aug. 2019 Smart move by all; the game has sold more than 130 million copies and is the league’s second-largest source of licensing revenue, behind only apparel. The Si Staff, SI.com, "100 Figures Who Shaped the NFL’s First Century," 28 Aug. 2019 Her eight children’s books (published in the 1930s and '40s) have sold 60 million copies and spurred an entire chunk of the American culture pie: a beloved TV series, pageants, plays, musicals, cookbooks, and more. Elena Nicolaou, refinery29.com, "Little House, Big Fans: These People Really, Really Love Laura Ingalls Wilder," 24 Aug. 2019 The pop star’s seventh studio album is now available to stream, and physical copies will be in stores everywhere Friday, including deluxe editions of Lover available at Target and on her official website. Lauren Huff, EW.com, "Taylor Swift's album Lover is officially here — listen now," 23 Aug. 2019 Passengers can also apply for the discount retroactively by providing a copy of the death certificate or a letter from the attending physician or hospital. Jessica Puckett, Condé Nast Traveler, "How to Get a Bereavement Fare From an Airline," 7 Aug. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Margo George, a Bay Area lawyer who is the co-chair of the defender’s legislative committee, said the group did not want to see other county prosecutors around the state copying the tactic. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Bill to block DA from demanding defendants give up future rights passes Legislature," 13 Sep. 2019 In that case, the mass shooter posted his manifesto on 8chan, along with a link to a Facebook Live broadcast so people could watch and copy the footage of him killing 51 people. Alyssa Newcomb, Fortune, "8chan Tells Congress It’s ‘Voluntarily’ Offline. What’s Next for the Message Board Favored by Mass Shooters," 5 Sep. 2019 But then Stephens emailed Karpf and copied George Washington University’s provost. Hannah Knowles, Washington Post, "Bret Stephens is still talking about bedbugs — and now, the language of the Holocaust," 31 Aug. 2019 Each Torah is carefully created, copying the 304,805 letters exactly from the original scroll. Jamie Swinnerton, Houston Chronicle, "Chabad of The Woodlands celebrates milestone with new Torah," 29 Aug. 2019 Stephens, in an email, scolded Karpf for his comment and copied the provost at the professor's university. Rebecca Morin, USA TODAY, "'Tough guy!': Trump mocks NYT columnist Bret Stephens for bedbug reaction," 28 Aug. 2019 Along with the grim-looking photo, each features some copy serving as an explanation of that character and their place in the story. Chris Thilk, The Hollywood Reporter, "Lionsgate Bets on Durability of 'Angel Has Fallen' to Keep Franchise Going," 23 Aug. 2019 Twitter: @techchronicle Apple tried to make its new credit card attractive, copying the heft and sleekness of higher-end cards like the Chase Sapphire. SFChronicle.com, "APFN-US--Apple Card-Special Care," 22 Aug. 2019 According to public records and interviews, Greenbrier lawyers penned the request to the Ethics Commission and took it to the governor’s office, where staff copied it onto the governor’s letterhead, and Justice signed it. Ken Ward Jr., ProPublica, "Welcome to the Greenbrier, the Governor-Owned Luxury Resort Filled With Conflicts of Interest," 15 Aug. 2019

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

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First Known Use of copy

Noun

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Verb

14th century, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for copy

Noun

Middle English copie, from Anglo-French, from Medieval Latin copia, from Latin, abundance — more at copious

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More Definitions for copy

copy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of copy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that is or looks exactly or almost exactly like something else : a version of something that is identical or almost identical to the original
: one of the many books, magazines, albums, DVDs, etc., that are exactly the same and are produced to be sold or given to the public
: written information that is to be published in a newspaper, magazine, etc.

copy

verb

English Language Learners Definition of copy (Entry 2 of 2)

: to make a version of (something) that is exactly or almost exactly like the original : to make a copy or duplicate of (something)
: to write (something) down exactly as it appears somewhere else
: to use (someone else's words or ideas) as your own

copy

noun
\ ˈkä-pē How to pronounce copy (audio) \
plural copies

Kids Definition of copy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : something that is made to look exactly like something else : duplicate a copy of a letter a copy of a painting
2 : one of the total number of books, magazines, or papers printed at one time She owns a copy of a popular atlas.
3 : written material to be published

copy

verb
copied; copying

Kids Definition of copy (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : to make a duplicate of

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More from Merriam-Webster on copy

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with copy

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for copy

Spanish Central: Translation of copy

Nglish: Translation of copy for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of copy for Arabic Speakers

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