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[tip-i-kuh l] /ˈtɪp ɪ kəl/
of the nature of or serving as a type or representative specimen.
conforming to a particular type.
Biology. exemplifying most nearly the essential characteristics of a higher group in natural history, and forming the type:
the typical genus of a family.
characteristic or distinctive:
He has the mannerisms typical of his class.
pertaining to, of the nature of, or serving as a type or emblem; symbolic.
Sometimes, typic.
Origin of typical
1605-15; < Medieval Latin typicālis, equivalent to Late Latin typic(us) (< Greek typikós, equivalent to týp(os) type + -ikos -ic) + Latin -ālis -al1
Related forms
typically, adverb
typicalness, typicality, noun
nontypical, adjective
nontypically, adverb
nontypicalness, noun
quasi-typical, adjective
quasi-typically, adverb
untypical, adjective
untypically, adverb
1. normal, average, stock, usual. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for typical
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • The fate of the ancestor had been typical of that of his descendants.

    The White Company Arthur Conan Doyle
  • In the lives of great men the typical tragedies are likely to repeat themselves.

    The Man Shakespeare Frank Harris
  • It was not the typical fur town of the Far North, but it lay at the threshold.

    The Forest Stewart Edward White
  • Edith Longworth could hardly be said to be a typical representative of the English girl.

    A Woman Intervenes Robert Barr
  • They have been largely copied as typical examples of American humour.

    A Woman Intervenes Robert Barr
British Dictionary definitions for typical


being or serving as a representative example of a particular type; characteristic: the painting is a typical Rembrandt
considered to be an example of some undesirable trait: that is typical of you!
of or relating to a representative specimen or type
conforming to a type
(biology) having most of the characteristics of a particular taxonomic group: a typical species of a genus
Also (poetic) typic
Derived Forms
typically, adverb
typicalness, typicality, noun
Word Origin
C17: from Medieval Latin typicālis, from Late Latin typicus figurative, from Greek tupikos, from tupostype
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for typical

c.1600, "symbolic, emblematic," from Medieval Latin typicalis "symbolic," from Late Latin typicus "of or pertaining to a type," from Greek typikos, from typos "impression" (see type (n.)). Sense of "characteristic" is first recorded 1850. Related: Typically.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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