facsimile

noun
fac·sim·i·le | \fak-ˈsi-mə-lē \

Definition of facsimile 

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

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

Keep scrolling for more

Choose the Right Synonym for 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

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.

Examples of facsimile in a Sentence

A facsimile of the world's first computer was exhibited in the museum. the family resemblance is so strong that the boy is virtually a pint-size facsimile of his father

Recent Examples on the Web

In his graphic print, now on display at the Smithsonian’s National Portrait Gallery to mark the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination, Lichtenstein produced a fierce facsimile of a man with a message. Alice George, Smithsonian, "On the Eve of his Death, Robert Kennedy Was a Whirlwind of Empathy and Internal Strife," 7 June 2018 Tibet is a real place, and Disney has gone to great lengths to immerse visitors in a facsimile of the Himalayas. Arthur Levine, USA TODAY, "Disney's Animal Kingdom celebrates 20 years," 15 Apr. 2018 Yes, Chevy’s is a national chain, but this outlet offers a bright facsimile of the river spirit. Allen Pierleoni, sacbee, "Where to go for fun and food along Sacramento's Garden Highway," 18 May 2018 The set by Rob Howell doesn’t create a realistic facsimile of the Connecticut summerhouse in which O’Neill spent his boyhood summers. Charles Mcnulty, latimes.com, "Lesley Manville and Jeremy Irons fill 'Long Day's Journey Into Night' with sorrow and savagery," 12 June 2018 Siberia for a fair facsimile of Keanu Reeves’ hardboiled crime series. Justin Lowe, The Hollywood Reporter, "'Siberia': Film Review," 13 July 2018 These meticulous facsimiles of her world are the art of someone drawn to detail and who wants things arranged just so. Katherine Fusco, The Atlantic, "Hereditary and the Monstrousness of Creative Moms," 11 July 2018 Both Davidson’s facsimile of a face and Grande’s real face got the dog-ear filter. Sarah Spellings, The Cut, "Of Course Ariana Grande Has a Sweatshirt of Pete Davidson’s Face," 29 June 2018 So in 1820, John Quincy Adams commissioned printer William Stone to make 200 facsimiles of the precious document. Brigit Katz, Smithsonian, "Copy of Declaration of Independence, Hidden Behind Wall Paper During the Civil War, Resurfaces in Texas," 21 Feb. 2018

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

See More

First Known Use of facsimile

1691, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for facsimile

from the Latin phrase fac simile "make alike," from fac, singular imperative of facere "to make, do, perform" + simile, neuter of similis "like, similar" — more at fact, same entry 1

Note: The phrase fac simile was well-known from its occurrence in one of the Distichs of Cato, a collection of proverbial wisdom (3rd-4th centuries A.D.) commonly used as a Latin textbook from the Middle Ages into the 18th century (though its meaning in the distich is different): "Qui simulat verbis, nec corde est fidus amicus, tu quoque fac simile—sic ars deluditur arte." ("If someone makes a pretense in speech and is not a true friend, you do likewise as well—and so art will be duped by art.")

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about facsimile

Listen to Our Podcast about facsimile

Phrases Related to facsimile

reasonable facsimile

Statistics for facsimile

Last Updated

7 Oct 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for facsimile

The first known use of facsimile was in 1691

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for facsimile

facsimile

noun

English Language Learners Definition of facsimile

: an exact copy

facsimile

noun
fac·sim·i·le | \fak-ˈsi-mə-lē \
plural facsimiles

Kids Definition of facsimile

1 : an exact copy

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

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on facsimile

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for facsimile

Spanish Central: Translation of facsimile

Nglish: Translation of facsimile for Spanish Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about facsimile

Comments on facsimile

What made you want to look up facsimile? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

a generally accepted meaning of a word

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Great Scrabble Words—A Quiz

  • scrabble-tiles-that-read-scrabble-quiz
  • Which of the following Q-without-U words means the number five in cards or dice?
True or False

Test your knowledge - and maybe learn something along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
SCRABBLE® Sprint

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!