- to learn (a role) in order to replace the regular actor or actress when necessary.
- to act as understudy to (an actor or actress): to understudy the lead.
- to act or work as an understudy.
- a performer who learns the role of another in order to serve as a replacement if necessary.
Origin of understudy
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018
Examples from the Web for under-study
And work pressed, and Flutter-Duck must under-study him in all her spare moments.The King of Schnorrers
My under-study sighed, but he knew it was of no use to make any objections.
Her under-study is there—a rude human figure behind a brass screen.Following the Equator, Complete
Mark Twain (Samuel Clemens)
This scene is an 'under-study,' by the way, of the other scene in which I read of the discovery of Sir Runan's hat.Much Darker Days
Andrew Lang (AKA A. Huge Longway)
In theatrical circles each principal performer is furnished with what is termed in the profession an under-study.
- (tr) to study (a role or part) so as to be able to replace the usual actor or actress if necessary
- to act as understudy to (an actor or actress)
- an actor or actress who studies a part so as to be able to replace the usual actor or actress if necessary
- anyone who is trained to take the place of another in case of need
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
Word Origin and History for under-study
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper