DIMENSIONS: EVALUATION / Perspective
Used of an object, activity, condition, etc., which is assumed to illustrate a certain principle, law, or standard
R E F E R E N C E S
Example n. 1. one of a number of things, or a part of something, taken to show the character of the whole. 2. a pattern or model, as of something to be imitated or avoided: to set a good example. 3. as Instance, serving for illustration; specimen. 4. an instance illustrating a rule or method, as a mathematical problem proposed for solution. 5. an instance, esp. of punishment, serving as a warning to others; warning: Public executions were meant to be examples to the populace. 6. a precedent; parallel case: an action without example. -v.t. 7. Rare. to exemplify [used in the passive]. [ME exa(u)mple < MF example < L exempl(um), akin to eximere to take out [ex- EX-1 + emere to buy, orig. take]; r. ME exemple < L, as above]
-Syn. 1. Example, Sample, Specimen refer to an indvidual phenomenon taken as representative of a type, or to a part representative of the whole. Example is used of an object, activity, condition, etc., which is assumed to illustrate a certain principle, law, or standard: a good example of baroque architecture. Sample, used mainly in a concrete reference, refers to a small portion of a substance or to a single representative of a group or type which is intended to show what the rest of the substance or the group is like: a sample of yarn. Specimen usually suggests that the ŮsampleÓ chosen is intended to serve a scientific or technical purpose: a blood specimen; zoological specimens. 2. See ideal. 3. See case1.
[Urdang, Laurence, ed. Random House Dictionary of The English Language. New York: Random House, 1968.]
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