• synonyms


[sam-pler, sahm-]
See more synonyms for sampler on Thesaurus.com
  1. a person who samples.
  2. a piece of cloth embroidered with various stitches, serving to show a beginner's skill in needlework.
  3. a collection of samples, selections, etc.: a sampler of French poetry.
  4. an electronic device that digitally encodes and stores samples of sound.
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Origin of sampler

1250–1300; Middle English samplere < Old French essamplere, exemplaire < Latin exemplārium exemplar
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words for sampler

figurative, descriptive, emblematic, revealing, lace, decoration, tapestry, brocade, needlepoint, quilting, canvasser, sampler, adornment, needlework, tracery, bargello, arabesque, crochet, tatting, cross-stitch

Examples from the Web for sampler

Historical Examples of sampler

  • But the room was empty; the lamp was turned down; the sampler was pushed aside.

    The Manxman

    Hall Caine

  • I can do that in a way at home over my sampler or my white seam.

  • I thought of catamounts and bears; and then I thought of my sampler.

  • She ought to work a sampler and learn the letters to mark her own clothes.

    A Little Girl in Old Salem

    Amanda Minnie Douglas

  • The decorative and the useful were evenly balanced in sampler making.

British Dictionary definitions for sampler


  1. a person who takes samples
  2. a piece of embroidery executed as an example of the embroiderer's skill in using a variety of stitches: often incorporating numbers, letters, and the name and age of the embroiderer in a decorative panel
  3. music a piece of electronic equipment used for sampling
  4. a recording comprising a collection of tracks from other albums, intended to stimulate interest in the featured products
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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 sampler


"embroidery specimen by a beginner to show skill," 1520s, from sample (n.); earlier "pattern, model, example to be imitated" (early 14c.). The connecting notion is probably "piece of embroidery serving as a pattern to be copied, or to fix and retain the pattern." As "a collection of samples" from 1912.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper