imitate

verb im·i·tate \ ˈi-mə-ˌtāt \

Definition of imitate

imitated; imitating
transitive verb
1 :to follow as a pattern, model, or example
2 :to be or appear like :resemble
3 :to produce a copy of :reproduce
4 :mimic, counterfeit
  • can imitate his father's booming voice

imitator

play \ˈi-mə-ˌtā-tər\ noun

Examples of imitate in a Sentence

  1. Her style has been imitated by many other writers.

  2. He's very good at imitating his father's voice.

  3. She can imitate the calls of many different birds.

Recent Examples of imitate from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of imitate

Latin imitatus, past participle of imitari — more at image

imitate Synonyms

Synonym Discussion of imitate

copy, imitate, mimic, ape, mock mean to make something so that it resembles an existing thing. copy suggests duplicating an original as nearly as possible.
    • copied the painting and sold the fake as an original
imitate suggests following a model or a pattern but may allow for some variation.
    • imitate a poet's style
mimic implies a close copying (as of voice or mannerism) often for fun, ridicule, or lifelike imitation.
    • pupils mimicking their teacher
ape may suggest presumptuous, slavish, or inept imitating of a superior original.
    • American fashion designers aped their European colleagues
mock usually implies imitation with derision.
    • mocking a vain man's pompous manner

IMITATE Defined for English Language Learners

imitate

verb

Definition of imitate for English Language Learners

  • : to make or do something the same way as (something else)

  • : to do the same thing as (someone)

  • : to copy (someone's or something's behavior, sound, appearance, etc.)


IMITATE Defined for Kids

imitate

verb im·i·tate \ ˈi-mə-ˌtāt \

Definition of imitate for Students

imitated; imitating
1 :to follow as a pattern, model, or example
  • He tried to imitate the older boys.
2 :to be or appear like :resemble
  • The vinyl imitates leather.
3 :to copy exactly :mimic
  • She can imitate bird calls.


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