noun fac·sim·i·le \fak-ˈsi-mə-lē\

Definition of facsimile

  1. 1 :  an exact copy A facsimile of the world's first computer was exhibited at the museum.

  2. 2 :  a system of transmitting and reproducing graphic matter (such as printing or still pictures) by means of signals sent over telephone lines

facsimile was our Word of the Day on 07/31/2011. Hear the podcast!

Examples of facsimile in a sentence

  1. A facsimile of the world's first computer was exhibited in the museum.

  2. the family resemblance is so strong that the boy is virtually a pint-size facsimile of his father

Did You Know?

The facsimile machine (or fax machine) has been a staple of the modern office for a while now, and its name is much, much older. Fac simile is a Latin phrase meaning "make similar." English speakers began using facsimile as a noun meaning "an exact copy" in the late 1600s. In this sense, a facsimile might be a handwritten or hand drawn copy, or even a copy of a painting or statue. (Today, we also use the phrase "a reasonable facsimile" for a copy that is not exact but fairly close.) In the 1800s, people developed facsimile technology that could reproduce printed material via telegraph. Now, of course, we use telephone lines or wireless technology, and we usually call the resulting facsimile a fax.

Origin and Etymology of facsimile

Latin fac simile make similar

First Known Use: 1691

Synonym Discussion of facsimile

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

FACSIMILE Defined for English Language Learners


noun fac·sim·i·le \fak-ˈsi-mə-lē\

Definition of facsimile for English Language Learners

  • : an exact copy

FACSIMILE Defined for Kids


noun fac·sim·i·le \fak-ˈsi-mə-lē\

Definition of facsimile for Students



  1. 1 :  an exact copy

  2. 2 :  a system of sending and reproducing printed matter or pictures by means of signals sent over telephone lines

Seen and Heard

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feeling or affected by lethargy

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