a picture, image, or other representation.
Eastern Church. a representation of some sacred personage, as Christ or a saint or angel, painted usually on a wood surface and venerated itself as sacred.
a sign or representation that stands for its object by virtue of a resemblance or analogy to it.
Computers. a picture or symbol that appears on a monitor and is used to represent a command, as a file drawer to represent filing.
Semiotics. a sign or representation that stands for its object by virtue of a resemblance or analogy to it.
Also, eikon, ikon (for defs 1, 2).

1565–75; < Latin < Greek eikṓn likeness, image, figure

icon, ikon.

2. See image.
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Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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World English Dictionary
icon (ˈaɪkɒn)
1.  Also: ikon a representation of Christ, the Virgin Mary, or a saint, esp one painted in oil on a wooden panel, depicted in a traditional Byzantine style and venerated in the Eastern Church
2.  an image, picture, representation, etc
3.  a person or thing regarded as a symbol of a belief, nation, community, or cultural movement
4.  a person regarded as a sex symbol or as a symbol of the latest fashion trends
5.  a pictorial representation of a facility available on a computer system, that enables the facility to be activated by means of a screen cursor rather than by a textual instruction
[C16: from Latin, from Greek eikōn image, from eikenai to be like]

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin & History

1570s, "image, figure, representation," from L.L. icon, from Gk. eikon "likeness, image, portrait," related to eikenai "be like, look like." Eastern Church sense is attested from 1833. Computing sense first recorded 1982.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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American Heritage
Science Dictionary
icon   (ī'kŏn')  Pronunciation Key 
In a graphical user interface, a picture on the screen that represents a specific file, directory, window, or program. Clicking on an icon will start the associated program or open the associated file, directory, or window.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

icon definition

An image used in worship in the Eastern Orthodox Church and among other Christians of similar traditions. Icons depict Jesus, Mary, and the saints, usually in a severe, symbolic, nonrealistic way.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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Example sentences
The canonical winter icons, stellar snow crystals are thin plates of ice with
  six main arms, or branches.
In sum, there should be a little something for everyone in my list of
  alternative icons.
It is not too much to say that their media producers actually create and
  sustain them as pop-culture icons.
It's interesting to see how food advertising icons have morphed through the
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