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A cosplayer of Sailor Moon.


Borrowed from Japanese コスプレ (kosupure), which is a contraction of コスチュームプレイ (kosuchūmu purei), equivalent to an English blend of costume +‎ play.



cosplay (countable and uncountable, plural cosplays)

  1. (uncountable) The art or practice of costuming oneself as a (usually fictional) character.
    • 2003, Cosplay Girls: Japan's Live Animation Heroines:
      Men, of course, also participate in cosplay and all its attending events, but women make up the greater numbers.
    • 2006, Frenchy Lunning, Mechademia 1: Emerging Worlds of Anime And Manga, page 75:
      The environments and spaces created for and by cosplay provide cosplayers with a variety of spaces for social interactions.
    • 2010, Antonia Levi, Mark McHarry, Dru Pagliassotti, Boys' Love Manga, page 5:
      It didn't take long for anime cons and cosplay to become a part of popular culture fandom in the West []
  2. (countable) A skit or instance of this art or practice.
    • 2010, Sarah Lynne Bowman, The Functions of Role-playing Games, page 29:
      Central to the activity of cosplay is elaborate costuming, though some cosplays are enacted using a game system.
    • 2010, Anne Cooper-Chen, Cartoon Cultures: The Globalization of Japanese Popular Media, page 121:
      According to a student from France who went to Japan to study Japanese, "Universities in France are like Halloween when otaku students engage in these cosplays. They take Japanese language because of anime, but they see after a few classes that it's hard and not fun. Many drop out" (author interview, 2009).
    • 2012, Dan Hunter, Ramon Lobato, Megan Richardson, Amateur Media: Social, cultural and legal perspectives:
      Popular cosplays include, for example, characters from the Final Fantasy range of games []



cosplay (third-person singular simple present cosplays, present participle cosplaying, simple past and past participle cosplayed)

  1. (intransitive) To costume oneself as a character.
    She cosplayed at the manga convention.
  2. (transitive) To costume oneself as (a character).
    She cosplayed Sailor Moon at the manga convention.

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cosplay m or f (in variation) (uncountable)

  1. cosplay (art of dressing as characters)
  2. cosplay (instance of dressing as a character)


For quotations of use of this term, see Citations:cosplay.

Related terms[edit]



cosplay m (uncountable)

  1. cosplay