copycat

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English[edit]

Alternative forms[edit]

Etymology[edit]

From copy + cat (person). It has been in use since at least 1896, in Sarah Orne Jewett's The Country of the Pointed Firs.

Noun[edit]

copycat (plural copycats)

  1. (informal) One who imitates others' work without adding ingenuity.

Translations[edit]

Adjective[edit]

copycat (comparative more copycat, superlative most copycat)

  1. Imitative; unoriginal.
    • 1997, “The Atlantic monthly”: 
      "Because of my size, I was a natural leader in junior high school. Gangs are the most copycat of subcultures. It used to be zoot suits; now it's tattoos. When I was thirteen, I got a tattoo"
    • 1997, Daniel Miller, Capitalism: an ethnographic approach:
      As one executive put it: Now in the beverage market we are to a great extent very copycat.
    • 2009, Alan Cole, Fathering your father: the Zen of fabrication in Tang Buddhism:
      It was that very copycat kind of "grandfather stealing" that makes Jinjue's text look like the son of Du Fei's Record, even as it works to push Du Fei's "father-text" out of the way.

Verb[edit]

copycat (third-person singular simple present copycats, present participle copycatting, simple past and past participle copycatted)

  1. To act as a copycat; to copy in a shameless or derivative way