icon·​ic | \ ī-ˈkä-nik How to pronounce iconic (audio) \

Definition of iconic

1 : of, relating to, or having the characteristics of an icon
2a : widely recognized and well-established an iconic brand name
b : widely known and acknowledged especially for distinctive excellence an iconic writer a region's iconic wines

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Other Words from iconic

iconically \ ī-​ˈkä-​ni-​k(ə-​)lē How to pronounce iconically (audio) \ adverb

Did You Know?

The original meaning of iconic was essentially "resembling an icon", but today it more often seems to mean "so admired that it could be the subject of an icon". And with that meaning, iconic has become part of the language of advertising and publicity; today companies and magazines and TV hosts are constantly encouraging us to think of some consumer item or pop star or show as first-rate or immortal or flawless—absolutely "iconic"—when he or she or it is actually nothing of the kind.

Examples of iconic in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

As noted by Refinery29, MAC also once had a Disney villains line, featuring a number of iconic characters including Cruella De Vil and Maleficent. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, "MAC Cosmetics Announces Disney "Aladdin" Collection," 16 Mar. 2019 But the Peanuts gang is undoubtedly well-suited for Apple's streaming service, providing iconic characters for fun, family-friendly content. Valentina Palladino, Ars Technica, "Apple to bring Charlie Brown and the Peanuts to its streaming service," 17 Dec. 2018 The writers, actors, and costume department pulled out all the stops to propel the story forward while paying homage to its iconic characters. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, "The Big Bang Theory," 25 Oct. 2018 For the most adorable mother-daughter Halloween costume, round up a pair of ears (and maybe a few more items) to dress like the iconic Disney character. Blake Bakkila, Good Housekeeping, "3 Easy Ways Mother-Daughter Duos Can DIY Their Minnie Mouse Halloween Costumes," 23 Oct. 2018 Though equally aww-inducing, Ellen's romance differs from that of her iconic character's long-running love affair with Derek Shepherd, aka Dr. McDreamy, in many ways. Samantha Drake, Country Living, "'Grey's Anatomy' Star Ellen Pompeo's Husband Chris Ivery Is Her 'Person' in Real Life," 27 Sep. 2018 Marvel will get more female heroes when Fox ’s X-Men franchise comes into Disney’s fold, offering iconic characters like Storm and Jean Grey. Aaron Back, WSJ, "Marvel Gets a Leading Woman," 18 Sep. 2018 This collaboration with The Can Van riffed on Chris Farley’s iconic Saturday Night Live character Matt Foley and inspired a fan to climb into the water in a tweed coat. Benjy Egel, sacbee, "These 15 Sacramento-area beers have the cleverest names of any released in 2018," 12 July 2018 Star Wars arguably has movie land’s largest and most passionate fan base, as loyalists heap lavish praise and reverence on iconic characters such as Princess Leia, Luke Skywalker and Darth Vader. Allison Klein, Washington Post, "Actor who played Jar Jar Binks in Star Wars says the hate for his character almost led him to suicide," 5 July 2018

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

1656, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for iconic

Last Updated

20 Mar 2019

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Time Traveler for iconic

The first known use of iconic was in 1656

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More from Merriam-Webster on iconic

Nglish: Translation of iconic for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of iconic for Arabic Speakers

Comments on iconic

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


to reflect, repel, echo, or resound

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