Word of the Day

Thursday, May 01, 2003

simulacrum

\sim-yuh-LAY-kruhm; -LAK-ruhm\ , noun;
plural simulacra \sim-yuh-LAY-kruh; -LAK-ruh\
1.
An image; a representation.
2.
An insubstantial, superficial, or vague likeness or semblance.
Quotes:
Incorporating simulacra of historic buildings and exotic landscapes the Emperor saw on his extensive travels through his dominions, the villa is high-style multiculturalism.
-- Martin Filler, New York Times, December 3, 1995
It becomes harder . . . to distinguish the genuine from its simulacrum.
-- Wayne Curtis, "The Tiki Wars", The Atlantic, February 2001
The Wilson who at last recovered some of his health was a pale simulacrum of the man he had been.
-- Louis Auchincloss, Woodrow Wilson
His radiator pipe and fire hose, for example, are like washed out ghosts of real things, waxen simulacra of themselves.
-- Harvey Blume, "Bits of Beauty", The Atlantic, June 3, 1999
Origin:
Simulacrum is from the Latin, from simulare, "to make like, to put on an appearance of," from similis, "like." It is related to simulate and similar.
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