Open main menu

Wiktionary β

See also: Meme, mémé, mème, même, mëmë, and me'me'

Contents

EnglishEdit

EtymologyEdit

Coined by Richard Dawkins in his book The Selfish Gene (1976). Shortened (after gene) from mimeme, from Ancient Greek μίμημα (mímēma, imitation, copy)[1]. The concept was later applied to the Internet by Mike Godwin[2].

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

meme (plural memes)

  1. Any unit of cultural information, such as a practice or idea, that is transmitted verbally or by repeated action from one mind to another in a comparable way to the transmission of genes.
    Synonyms: culturgen
    • 1976, Richard Dawkins, The Selfish Gene:
      Examples of memes are tunes, ideas, catch-phrases, clothes fashions, ways of making pots or of building arches.
    • 2002, Rita Carter, Exploring Consciousness, p. 242:
      Related memes tend to form mutually supporting meme-complexes such as religions, political ideologies, scientific theories, and New Age dogmas.
  2. (Internet, slang) Something, usually humorous, which is copied and circulated online with slight adaptations, including quizzes, basic pictures, video templates etc. [from 1993]
    • 2005, "darklily", OT: Livejournal (discussion on Internet newsgroup soc.sexuality.general)
      I do...but my journal is a mess. It's mostly filled with memes and my bitching about a house I am building.
    • 2012, Greg Jarboe, You Tube and Video Marketing, 2nd edition:
      The idea was to append Keyboard Cat to the end of a blooper video to "play" that person offstage after a mistake or gaffe, like getting the hook in the days of vaudeville. The meme became popular, Ashton Kutcher tweeted about it to more than 1 million followers, and more than 4,000 such videos have now been made.
    • 2013, The Guardian, (headline), 8 Feb 2013:
      Harlem Shake meme: the new Gangnam Style?

Derived termsEdit

TranslationsEdit

See alsoEdit

VerbEdit

meme (third-person singular simple present memes, present participle meming, simple past and past participle memed)

  1. (rare, Internet, slang) To turn into a meme; to use a meme, especially to achieve something in real life.
    to meme into existence
    • 2016 October 31, Andrew Marantz, “Trolls for Trump”, in The New Yorker[2], retrieved December 2, 2017:
      Scott Greer, a deputy editor of the Daily Caller, tweeted, “Cernovich memed #SickHillary into reality. Never doubt the power of memes.”
    • 2017 November 6, “David Moyes to West Ham “memed into existence by the internet””, in Football Burp[3], retrieved December 2, 2017:
      David Moyes succeeding Slaven Bilić as West Ham United manager is being memed into existence by the internet, Football Burp understands.

AnagramsEdit

Further readingEdit

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Richard Dawkins (1976) The Selfish Gene:

    We need a name for the new replicator, a noun that conveys the idea of a unit of cultural transmission, or a unit of imitation. 'Mimeme' comes from a suitable Greek root, but I want a monosyllable that sounds a bit like 'gene'. I hope my classicist friends will forgive me if I abbreviate mimeme to meme. If it is any consolation, it could alternatively be thought of as being related to 'memory', or to the French word même. It should be pronounced to rhyme with 'cream'.

  2. ^ Mike Godwin (1994-01-10), “Meme, Counter-meme”, in Wired[1]: “Not everyone saw the comparison to Nazis as a "meme" - most people on the Net, as elsewhere, had never heard of "memes" or "memetics." But now that we're living in an increasingly information-aware culture, it's time for that to change.”

CebuanoEdit

Etymology 1Edit

Onomatopoeic.

VerbEdit

meme

  1. (childish) to sleep

Etymology 2Edit

Borrowed from English meme.

NounEdit

meme

  1. a meme

ItalianEdit

NounEdit

meme m (plural memi)

  1. meme

PortugueseEdit

EtymologyEdit

Borrowed from English meme.

PronunciationEdit

NounEdit

meme m (plural memes)

  1. meme (unit of cultural information)
  2. (Internet slang) meme (humorous image, video or other media shared in the Internet)

SpanishEdit

NounEdit

meme m (plural memes)

  1. meme (unit of cultural information)

Tok PisinEdit

EtymologyEdit

Reduplication of English meh (onomatopoeia for the sound a goat makes)

NounEdit

meme

  1. goat

TurkishEdit

EtymologyEdit

  This entry lacks etymological information. If you are familiar with the origin of this term, please add it to the page per etymology instructions. You can also discuss it at the Etymology scriptorium.

Compare Azeri məmə, Turkmen määme.

NounEdit

meme (definite accusative memeyi, plural memeler)

  1. (anatomy) breast

DeclensionEdit