Definition of effigy in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈɛfɪdʒi/

noun (plural effigies)

1A sculpture or model of a person: a tomb effigy of Eleanor of Aquitaine
More example sentences
  • The exhibition includes more than 300 objects including tapestries. jewellery, stained glass, tomb effigies and sculptures, as well as paintings and illuminated books.
  • The counterpart of the English and Scottish passion for painted portraits was an almost equal obsession with sculpted effigies on tombs.
  • My naive idea of a sculptor is someone who works with clay or other materials, or chisels away at a piece of stone to create figures, busts and statues, likenesses and effigies, that only they, with their huge talent, can create.
statue, statuette, carving, sculpture, graven image, model, dummy, figure, figurine, guy;
likeness, representation, image;
bust, head
1.1A roughly made model of a person that is made in order to be damaged or destroyed as a protest: angry campaigners plan to burn an effigy of the social security minister
More example sentences
  • The protesters also burned an effigy of the House of Representatives Speaker.
  • The protestors burnt effigies representing the demons of inflation and privatisation.
  • One young graphic designer from Ennis had come to the protest with a life-size effigy of the prime minister.


burn someone in effigy

Burn a model of a person as a protest: the minister was burned in effigy
More example sentences
  • In 1793 Tom Paine, the English author of the Rights of Man, which sought to justify the French Revolution, was burned in effigy in the Market Place.
  • As colonists' anger over the Stamp Act built, a tax official was burned in effigy from the limbs of an elm estimated to be 120 years old.
  • Figures representing the Mexican and US presidents were burned in effigy.


Mid 16th century: from Latin effigies, from effingere 'to fashion (artistically)', from ex- 'out' + fingere 'to shape'.

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: ef¦figy

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