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Alternative forms[edit]


From Dutch manneken, Middle Dutch mannekijn.



manikin (plural manikins)

  1. Alternative spelling of mannequin.
    • 1951, “New Picture,” Time, 2 April, 1951,[1]
      Best scene: Hope trying to sneak the clothes off a department-store manikin without attracting attention from the crowd outside the window.
    • 1997, American Red Cross, Sport Safety Training: Instructor’s Manual, Granada Learning Limited, p. 118,[2]
      Students should be told in advance that training sessions will involve close physical contact with manikins used by their fellow students.
  2. A little man (sometimes as a term of endearment).
    Synonyms: homunculus, midget, peewee, shorty, titman
    • c. 1599, William Shakespeare, Twelfth Night, Act III, Scene 2,[3]
      This is a dear manikin to you, Sir Toby.
    • 1727, Jonathan Swift, Gulliver’s Travels, London: Benj. Motte, Volume 1, Part II, Chapter 1, p. 31,[4]
      She was very good natur’d, and not above Forty foot high, being little for her age. She gave me the name Grildrig, which the Family took up, and afterwards the whole Kingdom. The Word imports what the Latins call Nanunculus, the Italians Homunceletino, and the English Mannikin.
    • 1852, William Makepeace Thackeray, The History of Henry Esmond, Chapter 3,[5]
      [] when he asked Harry about singing, the lad broke out with a hymn to the tune of Dr. Martin Luther, which set Mr. Holt a-laughing; and even caused his grand parrain in the laced hat and periwig to laugh too when Holt told him what the child was singing. For it appeared that Dr. Martin Luther’s hymns were not sung in the churches Mr. Holt preached at. ¶ “You must never sing that song any more: do you hear, little mannikin?” says my Lord Viscount, holding up a finger.
    • 1876, Louisa May Alcott, Rose in Bloom, Chapter 1,[6]
      “Well, my mannikin, what do you think of us?” asked Rose, to break an awkward pause.
    • 1901, H. G. Wells, The First Men in the Moon, Chapter 19,[7]
      I took a deep breath. I put my hands to the sides of my mouth. “Cavor!” I bawled, and the sound was like some manikin shouting far away.
    • 1920, G. Stanley Hall (translator), A General Introduction to Psychoanalysis by Sigmund Freud, New York: Horace Liveright, Ninth Lecture, p. 114,[8]
      I hope you will not consider the expression too anthropomorphically, and picture the dream censor as a severe little manikin who lives in a little brain chamber and there performs his duties []
  3. A three-dimensional figure, dummy or effigy representing a man or person.
    • 1851, Herman Melville, Moby-Dick, Chapter 3,[9]
      [] he fumbled in the pockets, and produced at length a curious little deformed image with a hunch on its back, and exactly the color of a three days’ old Congo baby. Remembering the embalmed head, at first I almost thought that this black manikin was a real baby preserved in some similar manner. But seeing that it was not at all limber, and that it glistened a good deal like polished ebony, I concluded that it must be nothing but a wooden idol, which indeed it proved to be.
    • 1859, Fitz James O’Brien, “The Wondersmith” in The Poems and Stories of Fitz-James O’Brien, James R. Osgood & Co., 1881, reprinted by University Press: John Wilson & Son, Cambridge, 1969, pp. 179-180,[10]
      The window [] contains the only pleasant object in the place. This is a beautiful little miniature theatre,—that is to say, the orchestra and stage. It is fitted with charmingly painted scenery and all the appliances for scenic changes. There are tiny traps and delicately constructed “lifts,” and real footlights fed with burning-fluid, and in the orchestra sits a diminutive conductor before his desk, surrounded by musical manikins, all provided with the smallest of violoncellos, flutes, oboes, drums, and such like.
    • 1910, Edith Wharton, “The Bolted Door” in Tales of Men and Ghosts, London: Macmillan, p. 40,[11]
      [] I rigged up a kind of mannikin with old coats and a cushion—something to cast a shadow on the blind. All you fellows were used to seeing my shadow there in the small hours—I counted on that, and knew you’d take any vague outline as mine.”

Further reading[edit]

  • manikin at OneLook Dictionary Search