dummy

noun
dum·​my | \ ˈdə-mē How to pronounce dummy (audio) \
plural dummies

Definition of dummy

 (Entry 1 of 3)

1a dated, offensive : a person who is incapable of speaking
b : a person who is habitually silent
c : a stupid person He's no dummy. She loves you, you dummy.
2 card games
a : the exposed hand in bridge played by the declarer in addition to his or her own hand
b : a bridge player whose hand is a dummy
3 : an imitation, copy, or likeness of something used as a substitute: such as
a : mannequin a crash test dummy
b football : a stuffed figure or cylindrical bag used for tackling (see tackle entry 2 sense 1b) and blocking practice
c entertainment : a large puppet usually having movable features (such as mouth and arms) manipulated by a ventriloquist
d chiefly British : pacifier sense 2
4 : one seeming to act independently but in reality controlled by another a dummy for the real store owner
5 printing
a : a mock-up of a proposed publication (such as a book or magazine)
b : a set of pages (as for a newspaper or magazine) with the position of text and artwork indicated for the printer (see printer sense a)

dummy

adjective

Definition of dummy (Entry 2 of 3)

1a : having the appearance of being real : artificial dummy foods in the display case
b : existing in name only : fictitious dummy corporations
2 : apparently acting for oneself while really acting for or at the direction of another a dummy director

dummy

verb
dummied; dummying

Definition of dummy (Entry 3 of 3)

transitive verb

publishing
: to make a dummy (see dummy entry 1 sense 5) of (something, such as a publication) often used with up dummied up the front page

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Synonyms & Antonyms for dummy

Synonyms: Noun

Synonyms: Adjective

Antonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Adjective

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Examples of dummy in a Sentence

Noun She loves you, you dummy. They practiced CPR on a dummy. The bomb was just a dummy. Adjective They took apart a dummy bomb. the dummy shutters on the house are actually made of vinyl and are for decoration only
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Each year, fire safety officials warn of the dangers of fireworks and stage demonstrations of dummies that catch fire and watermelons that explode. Linda Trischitta, Sun-Sentinel.com, "3 boys hurt, one loses hand, in fireworks accident, official says," 10 July 2017 Zuby said the Tesla Model S didn’t have a strong enough safety belt, and a dummy used to simulate a driver in the small overlap test moved too far forward during the crash, striking its head on the steering wheel. Diana Kruzman, USA TODAY, "Three big cars get top IIHS crash rating -- not Tesla," 6 July 2017 At NASA Langley's Landing and Impact Research Facility, ten crash test dummies were buckled into a section of airplane fuselage and dropped from the sky. Chris Clarke, Popular Mechanics, "Airline Crash Test Dummies Live a Tough Life," 6 July 2017 Nursing students practice clinical procedures using virtual reality and full-size dummies, including a birthing simulator named Lucina. Jennifer Lu, miamiherald, "From prosthetic hands to bands that jam, innovations shine at eMerge Americas," 12 June 2017 The American Heart Association employs a bunch of dummies. Jessica Roy, The Cut, "This Week in Drama: Drake vs. Josh, Spicer Fat-Shamed, and the Great CIA Snack Scandal," 23 June 2017 While the group did 100 to 120 chest compressions a minute on CPR dummies, or 30 compressions and two breaths, Metro took photos with her phone and streamed the scene on Facebook Live. Victoria St. Martin, Washington Post, "This Md. mom’s son nearly drowned. Now she’s made it a mission to help people learn CPR.," 5 July 2017 TV show host Ellen DeGeneres presented her a ventriloquist dummy named Stacy as a gift. David Frese, kansascity.com, "Amazing Macey: How a 7-year-old Kansas girl became a beloved presidential star," 30 June 2017 Baig is the co-author of iPhone For Dummies, an independent work published by Wiley. Edward C. Baig, USA TODAY, "What the first iPhone tells us about tech's future," 23 June 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective The staffer used the dummy Pages to deliver fake likes to Hernández’s posts, the digital equivalent of bussing in a fake crowd for a speech. Robert Hackett, Fortune, "At long last, Biden assembles ‘cyber dream team’," 13 Apr. 2021 One museum attendee reportedly could not hold back their frustrations against the former president and decided to take their fists to the dummy model of Trump, according to the San Antonio Express-News. Kaelan Deese, Washington Examiner, "Wax Trump figure punched and scratched at museum," 19 Mar. 2021 In contrast, there were 18 cases among those given dummy shots. Amina Khan Staff Writer, Los Angeles Times, "Coronavirus Today: The vaccination effort’s boots on the ground," 31 Mar. 2021 The vaccine appears especially protective against the worst outcomes, with no severe illnesses or hospitalizations among vaccinated study volunteers compared to eight severe cases among those given dummy shots, the company said. Lauran Neergaard, Anchorage Daily News, "AstraZeneca confirms its vaccine offers strong protection after rift with US officials," 25 Mar. 2021 The study comprised more than 30,000 volunteers, of whom two-thirds were given the vaccine while the rest got dummy shots. Maria Cheng And Lauran Neergaard, USA TODAY, "AstraZeneca says US data shows COVID-19 vaccine is effective for all ages," 22 Mar. 2021 Then they’ll be tracked for a year to see whether the vaccine works better than the dummy shots. Los Angeles Times, "Moderna begins testing its COVID-19 vaccine in children as young as 6 months," 16 Mar. 2021 But an interim analysis found 62 participants so far have been diagnosed with COVID-19 — only six of them in the group that got vaccine and the rest who received dummy shots. Lauran Neergaard, Anchorage Daily News, "Novavax says its COVID-19 vaccine works but is less effective against variants," 29 Jan. 2021 Like West Covina, Detroit had used dummy corporations to borrow money after it had been ordered to fund its pension. New York Times, "To Plug a Pension Gap, This City Rented Its Streets. To Itself.," 16 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020 The Thanksgiving practice usually concludes with Senior Tackle, when each senior addresses the team and then hits a blocking sled or tackling dummy one final time. Alan Blinder, New York Times, "College Football Changes Thanksgiving Traditions Amid Pandemic," 25 Nov. 2020 From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020 Pfizer's Data and Safety Monitoring Board -- an outside team of experts who watch the trial with a neutral eye -- unblinded the data and saw that more than 90% of those cases were in people who had gotten placebo, or dummy shots. Maggie Fox, CNN, "Pfizer coronavirus vaccine news bodes well for other coronavirus vaccines, experts say," 9 Nov. 2020 From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020 From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020 From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020 From a mask that can’t be removed once donned to a horror theme park, killer camera, werewolf and dummy that comes to life, spooky adventures abound for ages 8 and older. Kathleen Christiansen, chicagotribune.com, "TV shows to watch throughout the Halloween season," 29 Sep. 2020

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'dummy.' 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 dummy

Noun

1598, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Adjective

1846, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

circa 1928, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for dummy

Noun, Adjective, and Verb

dumb entry 1 + -y entry 4

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Statistics for dummy

Cite this Entry

“Dummy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/dummy. Accessed 18 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for dummy

dummy

noun

English Language Learners Definition of dummy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

chiefly US, informal : a stupid person
: a doll that is shaped like and is as large as a person
: a copy of a finished object that is used during practice or training

dummy

adjective

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

: looking real but not functioning or able to be used

dummy

noun
dum·​my | \ ˈdə-mē How to pronounce dummy (audio) \
plural dummies

Kids Definition of dummy

1 : something shaped like a human a clothes store dummy
2 : a doll used in a ventriloquist's act
3 : a stupid person

dummy

noun
dum·​my | \ ˈdəm-ē How to pronounce dummy (audio) \
plural dummies

Medical Definition of dummy

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : a horse lacking the ability to respond to ordinary stimuli because of cerebral damage especially following encephalomyelitis
2 : pontic
3 : placebo

dummy

adjective

Medical Definition of dummy (Entry 2 of 2)

: being a placebo those who unknowingly receive a dummy pill instead of the real thing— Nicholas Wade

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