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From Latin mimicus, from Ancient Greek μιμικός (mimikós, belonging to mimes), from μῖμος (mîmos, imitator, actor); see mime.


  • IPA(key): /ˈmɪm.ɪk/
  • (file)
  • Rhymes: -ɪmɪk


mimic (third-person singular simple present mimics, present participle mimicking, simple past and past participle mimicked)

  1. To imitate, especially in order to ridicule.
    • 2013 June 1, “A better waterworks”, in The Economist[1], volume 407, number 8838, page 5 (Technology Quarterly):
      An artificial kidney these days still means a refrigerator-sized dialysis machine. Such devices mimic the way real kidneys cleanse blood and eject impurities and surplus water as urine.
  2. (biology) To take on the appearance of another, for protection or camouflage.



The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Wiktionary:Entry layout#Translations.


mimic (plural mimics)

  1. A person who practices mimicry, or mime.
  2. An imitation.



mimic (not comparable)

  1. Pertaining to mimicry; imitative.
    • 1603, Michel de Montaigne, chapter 12, in John Florio, transl., The Essayes, [], book II, printed at London: By Val[entine] Simmes for Edward Blount [], OCLC 946730821:
      I think every man is cloied and wearied, with seeing so many apish and mimicke trickes, that juglers teach their Dogges, as the dances, where they misse not one cadence of the sounds or notes they heare [].
    • 1667, John Milton, “Book 5”, in Paradise Lost. A Poem Written in Ten Books, London: Printed [by Samuel Simmons], and are to be sold by Peter Parker [] [a]nd by Robert Boulter [] [a]nd Matthias Walker, [], OCLC 228722708; republished as Paradise Lost in Ten Books: The Text Exactly Reproduced from the First Edition of 1667: [], London: Basil Montagu Pickering [], 1873, OCLC 230729554:
      Oft, in her absence, mimic fancy wakes / To imitate her.
    • (Can we date this quote by Wordsworth and provide title, author's full name, and other details?)
      And there, with fingers interwoven, both hands
      Pressed closely palm to palm and to his mouth
      Uplifted, he, as through an instrument,
      Blew mimic hootings to the silent owls,
      That they might answer him.
  2. Mock, pretended.
  3. (mineralogy) Imitative; characterized by resemblance to other forms; applied to crystals which by twinning resemble simple forms of a higher grade of symmetry.

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