A copy is a reproduction of something — it looks identical to the original. You might ask your sister to make a copy of your nephew's adorable painting so you can hang it on your fridge.

You can use the word copy in several different ways. Your doctor's office may keep a copy of your insurance card on file, and they may copy it again every year. This verb form of copy means "to replicate or reproduce." You can also copy down what your teacher says in class — in this case, you're not making an identical copy, but writing the basic ideas. The Medieval Latin root, copia, "reproduction or transcript," comes from the Latin word copia, "plenty."

Primary Meanings of copy

a thing made to be similar or identical to another thing
reproduce or make an exact copy of
matter to be printed; exclusive of graphical materials
Full Definitions of copy

n a thing made to be similar or identical to another thing

“she made a copy of the designer dress”
“the clone was a copy of its ancestor”
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anamorphism, anamorphosis
a distorted projection or perspective; especially an image distorted in such a way that it becomes visible only when viewed in a special manner
carbon, carbon copy
a copy made with carbon paper
cast, casting
object formed by a mold
duplicate, duplication
a copy that corresponds to an original exactly
autotype, facsimile
an exact copy or reproduction
something copied or derived from an original
clone, knockoff
an unauthorized copy or imitation
miniature, toy
a copy that reproduces a person or thing in greatly reduced size
slightly modified copy; not an exact copy
a photographic copy of written or printed or graphic work
a copy of a movie on film (especially a particular version of it)
any four copies; any of four things that correspond to one another exactly
replica, replication, reproduction
copy that is not the original; something that has been copied
one of three copies; any of three things that correspond to one another exactly
xerox, xerox copy
a copy made by a xerographic printer
backup, computer backup
(computer science) a copy of a file or directory on a separate storage device
counterpart, similitude, twin
a duplicate copy
death mask
a cast taken from the face of a dead person
block, cylinder block, engine block
a metal casting containing the cylinders and cooling ducts of an engine
fake, postiche, sham
something that is a counterfeit; not what it seems to be
counterfeit, forgery
a copy that is represented as the original
life mask
a cast taken from the face of a living person
match, mate
an exact duplicate
a photocopy made on a Photostat machine
a nonfunctional replica of something else (frequently used as a modifier)
Type of:
a creation that is a visual or tangible rendering of someone or something

n a reproduction of a written record (e.g. of a legal or school record)

Type of:
written account, written record
a written document preserving knowledge of facts or events

v reproduce or make an exact copy of

copy the genetic information”
Type of:
double, duplicate, reduplicate, repeat, replicate
make or do or perform again

v reproduce someone's behavior or looks

“Children often copy their parents or older siblings”
imitate, simulate
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conform to, follow
behave in accordance or in agreement with
imitate with mockery and derision
take off
mimic or imitate in an amusing or satirical manner
mime, mimic
imitate (a person or manner), especially for satirical effect
model, pattern
plan or create according to a model or models
follow, take after
imitate in behavior; take as a model
strive to equal or match, especially by imitating
go by
be or act in accordance with
ape, caricature
represent in or produce a caricature of
represent another person with comic intentions
burlesque, parody, spoof
make a parody of
pattern, make, regulate, set, measure, or estimate according to some rate or standard
sovietise, sovietize
model a country's social, political, and economic structure on the Soviet Union
Type of:
make a copy or equivalent of

v make a replica of

copy that drawing”
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make multiple copies of
make a reproduction or copy of
copy by following the lines of the original drawing on a transparent sheet placed upon it; make a tracing of
back up
make a copy of (a computer file) especially for storage in another place as a security copy
copy on a duplicator
make multiple identical copies of
mimeo, mimeograph
print copies from (a prepared stencil) using a mimeograph
make copies on a Roneograph
Type of:
create, make
make or cause to be or to become

v copy down as is

“The students were made to copy the alphabet over and over”
copy again
copy out
copy very carefully and as accurately as possible
Type of:
mark or trace on a surface

n matter to be printed; exclusive of graphical materials

written matter
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(computer science) a copy of the contents of a computer storage device; sometimes used in debugging programs
fair copy
a clean copy of a corrected draft
copy to fill space between more important articles in the layout of a magazine or newspaper
core dump
(computer science) dump of the contents of the chief registers in the CPU; usually used for debugging
Type of:
text, textual matter
the words of something written

n material suitable for a journalistic account

“catastrophes make good copy
Type of:
information (data or ideas or observations) that can be used or reworked into a finished form

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