impersonate (v.) 1620s, "to invest with a personality," from assimilated form of L. in- "into, in" (see IN- (Cf. in-) (2)) + persona "person." Sense of "to assume the person or character of" is first recorded 1715. Earlier in same sense was personate (1610s). Related: Impersonated; impersonating.

Etymology dictionary. 2014.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • impersonate — im·per·son·ate /im pər sə ˌnāt/ vt at·ed, at·ing: to assume (another s or a fictitious identity) without authority and with fraudulent intent impersonate a police officer impersonated a public servant by saying he was from the water department… …   Law dictionary

  • impersonate — [im pʉr′sə nāt΄] vt. impersonated, impersonating 1. Now Rare to represent in the form of a person; personify; embody 2. to act the part of; specif., a) to mimic the appearance, manner, etc. of (a person) for purposes of entertainment b) to… …   English World dictionary

  • Impersonate — Im*per son*ate, v. t. [imp. & p. p. {Impersonated}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Impersonating}.] 1. To invest with personality; to endow with the form of a living being. [1913 Webster] 2. To ascribe the qualities of a person to; to personify. [1913 Webster] …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • impersonate — play, *act Analogous words: imitate, mimic, ape, *copy: simulate, counterfeit, feign (see ASSUME): caricature, burlesque (see under CARICATURE n) …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • impersonate — [v] pretend to be another act, act a part, act like, act out, ape, assume character, ditto*, do, do an impression of, double as, dress as, enact, fake, imitate, make like*, masquerade as, mimic, mirror, pass oneself off as*, perform, personate,… …   New thesaurus

  • impersonate — ► VERB ▪ pretend to be (another person) for entertainment or fraud. DERIVATIVES impersonation noun impersonator noun. ORIGIN from IN (Cf. ↑in ) + Latin persona person …   English terms dictionary

  • impersonate — UK [ɪmˈpɜː(r)səneɪt] / US [ɪmˈpɜrs(ə)nˌeɪt] verb [transitive] Word forms impersonate : present tense I/you/we/they impersonate he/she/it impersonates present participle impersonating past tense impersonated past participle impersonated 1) to… …   English dictionary

  • impersonate — verb /ɪmˈpɜːsəneɪt/ a) To manifest in corporeal form, or in ones own person or body. The conman managed to impersonate several executives. b) To pretend to be (a different person), to assume the identity of. Syn: embody, personate …   Wiktionary

  • impersonate — im|per|son|ate [ımˈpə:səneıt US ə:r ] v [T] 1.) to pretend to be someone else by copying their appearance, voice, and behaviour, especially in order to deceive people ▪ Do you know it is a very serious offence to impersonate a police officer? 2.) …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • impersonate — [[t]ɪmpɜ͟ː(r)səneɪt[/t]] impersonates, impersonating, impersonated VERB If someone impersonates a person, they pretend to be that person, either to deceive people or to make people laugh. [V n] He was returned to prison in 1977 for impersonating… …   English dictionary

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