Definition of imitate in English:

Share this entry


Pronunciation: /ˈiməˌtāt/


1Take or follow as a model: his style was imitated by many other writers
More example sentences
  • Are the arts condemned, in short, whatever fertility one attributes to their techniques, to the eternal monotony of imitating the first models?
  • While handing over the charter to the President, the students were conscious of the fact that the youth imitated their role models in films and therefore sensitising film actors and directors was the most apt thing to do.
  • The company is providing a business model widely imitated by other corporations, especially its competitors.
emulate, copy, model oneself on, follow, echo, parrot
informal rip off, knock off, pirate
1.1Copy (a person’s speech or mannerisms), especially for comic effect: she imitated my Scottish accent
More example sentences
  • There is nothing wrong in imitating mannerisms found in every human being.
  • That is, motivated by prestige and upward mobility, lower class women try to imitate the speech of the upper class but miss the target and end up with affrication rather than frication.
  • He had grown fairly adept at imitating Jimjim's clipped speech.
mimic, do an impression of, impersonate, ape;
parody, caricature, burlesque, travesty
informal take off, send up, make like, mock
formal personate
1.2Copy or simulate: synthetic fabrics can now imitate everything from silk to rubber
More example sentences
  • But some simulations imitate real people and economies more closely than others, just as some physics models produce more authentic collisions.
  • At its most basic, a paramilitary group was structured to resemble or imitate a command or military organization.
  • They learn from doing, from a simulated experience that very closely imitates real life scenarios.



Pronunciation: /ˈimədəb(ə)l/
Example sentences
  • What I'll be working with tomorrow, then, is not a model provided by a film, or even by a filmmaker, but an abstract idea that I've not really had laid out before me in any concrete, imitable way.
  • To keep out the cold, in imitable British style, three-quarter-length car coats are back in tweed, cashmere and wool, featuring velvet collars.
  • It sees him tackling the Bible in his own imitable style.


Mid 16th century: from Latin imitat- 'copied', from the verb imitari; related to imago 'image'.

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: im·i·tate

Share this entry

What do you find interesting about this word or phrase?

Comments that don't adhere to our Community Guidelines may be moderated or removed.