: an image or representation especially of a person; especially : a crude figure representing a hated person
Did You Know?
An earlier sense of effigy is "a likeness of a person shaped out of stone or other materials," so it's not surprising to learn that effigy derives, by way of Middle French, from the Latin effigies, which, in turn, comes from the verb effingere ("to form"), a combination of the prefix ex- and fingere, which means "to shape." Fingere is the common ancestor of a number of other English nouns that name things you can shape. A fiction is a story you shape with your imagination. Figments are shaped by the imagination, too; they're something you imagine or make up. A figure can be a numeral, a shape, or a picture that you shape as you draw or write.
"At one meeting, he remembers, the leader of a competing company was hung in effigy as employees cheered." — Evan Bush, The Seattle Times, 25 Feb. 2018
"On the gathering's penultimate day, the giant effigy—or Man, as it is known—is set ablaze during a raucous, joyful celebration." — John Rogers and Janie Har, The Chicago Sun-Times, 28 Apr. 2018
Test Your Vocabulary with M-W Quizzes
Word Family Quiz
Fill in the blanks to complete an adjective that is derived from fingere and that denotes things that are related to pottery or that are malleable: f _ c _ i _ e.VIEW THE ANSWER
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