[ mir-er ]
See synonyms for mirror on Thesaurus.com
  1. a reflecting surface, originally of polished metal but now usually of glass with a silvery, metallic, or amalgam backing.

  2. such a surface set into a frame, attached to a handle, etc., for use in viewing oneself or as an ornament.

  1. any reflecting surface, as the surface of calm water under certain lighting conditions.

  2. Optics. a surface that is either plane, concave, or convex and that reflects rays of light.

  3. something that gives a minutely faithful representation, image, or idea of something else: Gershwin's music was a mirror of its time.

  4. a pattern for imitation; exemplar: a man who was the mirror of fashion.

  5. a glass, crystal, or the like, used by magicians, diviners, etc.

verb (used with object)
  1. to reflect in or as if in a mirror.

  2. to reflect as a mirror does.

  1. to mimic or imitate (something) accurately.

  2. to be or give a faithful representation, image, or idea of: Her views on politics mirror mine completely.

  1. Music. (of a canon or fugue) capable of being played in retrograde or in inversion, as though read in a mirror placed beside or below the music.

Idioms about mirror

  1. with mirrors, by or as if by magic.

Origin of mirror

First recorded in 1175–1225; Middle English mirour, from Old French mireo(u)r, equivalent to mir(er) “to look at” + -eo(u)r, from Latin -ātor, noun suffix of agency; see mirage,see -ator

Other words for mirror

Other words from mirror

  • mir·ror·like, adjective
  • un·mir·rored, adjective

Words that may be confused with mirror

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use mirror in a sentence

  • Glass chandeliers were suspended from the roof; handsome mirrors were intermixed with the prints and pictures.

  • Grace was the Gibson type, tall and slender and fair-haired and very pretty, with a decided liking for looking in mirrors.

  • In practice it is seldom necessary to touch the adjusting screws of the mirrors themselves.

    Photographs of Nebul and Clusters | James Edward Keeler
  • The lookouts gave free vision in all directions except directly below the hull, and a series of mirrors corrected this defect.

  • Inside there was a fire burning, furs strewn about the floor, metal urns and even mirrors hung on the rough stone walls.

    Valley of the Croen | Lee Tarbell

British Dictionary definitions for mirror


/ (ˈmɪrə) /

  1. a surface, such as polished metal or glass coated with a metal film, that reflects light without diffusion and produces an image of an object placed in front of it

  2. such a reflecting surface mounted in a frame

  1. any reflecting surface

  2. a thing that reflects or depicts something else: the press is a mirror of public opinion

  1. (tr) to reflect, represent, or depict faithfully: he mirrors his teacher's ideals

Origin of mirror

C13: from Old French from mirer to look at, from Latin mīrārī to wonder at

Derived forms of mirror

  • mirror-like, adjective

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

Scientific definitions for mirror


[ mĭrər ]

  1. An object that causes light or other radiation to be reflected from its surface, with little or no diffusion. Common mirrors consist of a thin sheet or film of metal, such as silver, behind or covering a glass pane. Mirrors are used extensively in telescopes, microscopes, lasers, fiber optics, measuring instruments, and many other devices. See more at reflection.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.