copy

noun
\ ˈkä-pē \
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

For extra points, borrow your copy from of your local public institution to get a whiff of what all the fuss is about. Vogue, "Need a New Read? Here Are the 4 Books We’re Loving Right Now," 15 Nov. 2018 Morton goes through the symptoms with her copy of the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders (DSM) on hand. Carolyn L. Todd, SELF, "What Mental Health Experts Want You to Know Before Watching the Buzzy New YouTube Series ‘The Mind of Jake Paul’," 12 Oct. 2018 Her potential looks to copy didn't end there though. Lauren Rearick, Teen Vogue, "Gigi Hadid Wore Her Hair in a Ponytail and Loose Waves," 5 Sep. 2018 Get your copy on newsstands now or pick up a digital subscription to read the latest in science news and innovation. Discover Magazine, "Table of Contents Sep 2018," 17 Aug. 2018 The evidence that the IRA had bought ads on Google was provided as images of ad text and in PDF format whose pages displayed copies of information previously organized in spreadsheets. Sean Gallagher, Ars Technica, "Massive scale of Russian election trolling revealed in draft Senate report," 17 Dec. 2018 Great American Read: Wednesday, July 18, at 6:30 p.m. Find out about the read and receive a copy of the list of 100 of Americans' favorite books. Courant Community, "Community News For The Windsor Edition," 10 July 2018 Eventually, the book became a New York Times bestseller, selling more than 11 million copies in 40 countries. Amanda Garrity, Good Housekeeping, "Marie Kondo's Massive Net Worth Proves That It Pays to Keep a Tidy House," 16 Jan. 2019 Pregnant Duchess Meghan was welcomed to the center in west London as it was revealed that Together, Our Community Cookbook has sold 39,000 copies in the UK alone, raising $270,000. Victoria Murphy, Town & Country, "Meghan Markle Tells the Women of the Hubb Community Kitchen She's So "Happy" to Be Pregnant," 21 Nov. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

In the real world, this means copying batches of photos and videos to the T5 is consistently fast relative to the task at hand. Jeff Dunn, Ars Technica, "The Ars Holiday Gift Guide 2018—good tech for the power user in your life," 4 Dec. 2018 The market for generics can respond to policy changes with some speed because copying a drug is much less onerous than new drug discovery and approval. The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Sticking it to Pharma—With Competition," 19 Nov. 2018 The issue if Lovren copying his trademark celebration. SI.com, "PHOTO: Salah Jokingly Demands Answers From Liverpool Teammate Lovren Over Copycat Celebration," 14 May 2018 Wouldn’t shock me if new Titans head coach Mike Vrabel copies his mentor. Eddie Brown, sandiegouniontribune.com, "NFL Mock Draft 2018: Three-round projections," 8 Mar. 2018 In the past, Facebook executives have explained that in the technology industry, copying what works is sometimes necessary. Gerrit De Vynck, chicagotribune.com, "BlackBerry sues Facebook for patent infringement over messaging," 7 Mar. 2018 And while the book was indeed mentioned in Putin’s bibliography, the report found that nearly 16 pages of the thesis were copied word-for-word from the textbook without quotation marks, page citations and footnotes. Ian Bremmer, Time, "5 Politicos With Questionable Academic Credentials," 5 Mar. 2018 The authors do not maintain that Shakespeare copied North’s manuscript, but instead drew inspiration from its pages. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Software Points to Possible Inspiration for 11 Shakespeare Plays," 9 Feb. 2018 Yahoo’s Jeff Eisenberg suggested that Kansas State seemed to have success with its various defenses against Young and that other opponents could copy that plan, which included a box-and-one and blitzing every ball screen set up for Young. Joe Juliano, Philly.com, "Kansas returns to a familiar spot, atop Big 12 | College hoops topics," 19 Jan. 2018

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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Statistics for copy

Last Updated

19 Feb 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for copy

The first known use of copy was in the 14th century

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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 \
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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