simulacrum was our Word of the Day on 07/24/2016. Hear the podcast!
Did You Know?
It's not a figment of your imagination; there is a similarity between simulacrum and simulate. Both of those English words derive from simulare, a Latin verb meaning "to copy, represent, or feign." In its earliest English uses, simulacrum named something that provided an image or representation (as, for instance, a portrait, marble statue, or wax figure representing a person). Perhaps because a simulacrum, no matter how skillfully done, is not the real thing, the word gained an extended sense emphasizing the superficiality or insubstantiality of a thing.
Origin and Etymology of simulacrum
Middle English, from Latin, from simulare
First Known Use: 15th century
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