Archetype



the original pattern or model from which all things of the same kind are copied or on which they are based; a model or first form; prototype.
(in Jungian psychology) a collectively inherited unconscious idea, pattern of thought, image, etc., universally present in individual psyches.
Contemporary Examples

The calavera, or decorated skull, is an archetype of Mexican popular culture.
New Orleans’ Carnivalesque Day of the Dead Jason Berry October 31, 2014

He was a bit of an Owen archetype and a big influence on me as a kid.
Sam Rockwell on ‘The Way, Way Back,’ His Troubled Youth & More Marlow Stern July 4, 2013

Both men leaned on the archetype of the black “thug” to explain their fear, and both men argued that it justified their actions.
‘Stand Your Ground’ comes to South Africa? Jamelle Bouie March 3, 2014

The archetype of the disobedient Cossack who will not stoop to intimidation remains an important part of Ukrainian identity.
Cossacks: The Cowboys of Crimea Kamil Tchorek March 11, 2014

Roll Royce—you would expect nothing less from such a British archetype, right?
Nationalism on Four Wheels Clive Irving October 17, 2014

Historical Examples

He had not, however, rid himself of the notion that the archetype was a property inherent in the group.
Encyclopaedia Britannica, 11th Edition, Volume 14, Slice 1 Various

With them we think of the artificial as the archetype; the earth-born as the erratic exception.
Alarms and Discursions G. K. Chesterton

Each modern vanity here has its parallel–each luxury its archetype.
A Love Story A Bushman

In what relation does the archetype stand to the Creator himself?
Timaeus Plato

Thus, the same individual man will have not only the Self-animal and the Self-biped, but also the Self-man, as archetype.
Aristotle George Grote

noun
a perfect or typical specimen
an original model or pattern; prototype
(psychoanal) one of the inherited mental images postulated by Jung as the content of the collective unconscious
a constantly recurring symbol or motif in literature, painting, etc
n.

“original pattern from which copies are made,” 1540s, from Latin archetypum, from Greek arkhetypon “pattern, model, figure on a seal,” neuter of adjective arkhetypos “first-moulded,” from arkhe- “first” (see archon) + typos “model, type, blow, mark of a blow” (see type). Jungian psychology sense of “pervasive idea or image from the collective unconscious” is from 1919.

archetype ar·che·type (är’kĭ-tīp’)
n.

An original model or type after which other similar things are patterned.

In Jungian psychology, an inherited pattern of thought or symbolic image that is derived from the past collective experience of humanity and is present in the unconscious of the individual. Also called imago.

ar’che·typ’al (-tī’pəl) or ar’che·typ’ic (-tĭp’ĭk) or ar’che·typ’i·cal adj.
ar’che·typ’i·cal·ly adv.
archetype [(ahr-ki-teyep)]

An original model after which other similar things are patterned. In the psychology of Carl Jung, archetypes are the images, patterns, and symbols that rise out of the collective unconscious and appear in dreams, mythology, and fairy tales.

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