Definition of icon
1 : a usually pictorial representation : image
2 [Late Greek eikōn, from Greek] : a conventional religious image typically painted on a small wooden panel and used in the devotions of Eastern Christians
3 : an object of uncritical devotion : idol
5a : a sign (such as a word or graphic symbol) whose form suggests its meaningb : a graphic symbol on a computer display screen that represents an object (such as a file) or function (such as the command to delete)
Examples of icon in a Sentence
Click on the icon to open your e-mail program.
He has become an icon in the movie business.
a singer who has become a pop icon
The Statue of Liberty has become an American cultural icon.
Recent Examples of icon from the Web
After quickly becoming prominent as a House member in his first election in 1982, Mr. McCain won the Senate seat given up by the Arizona icon Barry Goldwater in 1986.
Gucci, Rae and Uzi have all become pop culture icons with millions of views on YouTube.
Lewis, who is a Civil Rights icon, was there to have a conversation with former Obama campaign manager and CNN host David Axelrod about Lewis’ experiences leading the Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee (SNCC).
NO ONE knew quite how the accident happened: how at some point in the 1970s Heathcote Williams set himself alight on the doorstep of his lover, Jean Shrimpton, an icon of the age, and ended up in Charing Cross hospital.
An international fashion icon gunned down in broad daylight on Miami Beach’s most famous street.
Women forced to practice Chaupadi in Nepal are banished from the home—barred from touching food, religious icons, cattle and men—and forced into a monthly exile sleeping in basic huts.
As a celebrity and a pop-culture icon, Trump was riding higher than ever.
There's a good story behind why post-punk icon Tommy Stinson, the jittery, compulsive and combustible engine of the Replacements, is bringing his acoustic tour to Louisville's Surface Noise Records.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'icon.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Origin and Etymology of icon
Latin, from Greek eikōn, from eikenai to resemble
First Known Use: 1572See Words from the same year
Definition of icon-
: image iconolatry
Origin and Etymology of icon-
Greek eikon-, eikono-, from eikon-, eikōn
ICON Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of icon for English Language Learners
computers : a small picture on a computer screen that represents a program or function
: a person who is very successful and admired
: a widely known symbol
ICON Defined for Kids
Definition of icon for Students
1 : a widely known symbol The Statue of Liberty has become an icon of freedom.
2 : a person who is very successful or admired a pop icon
3 : a religious image usually painted on a small wooden panel
4 : a small picture or symbol on a computer screen that represents a function that the computer can perform
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up icon? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).