Part of speech: noun
Origin: Greek, mid-16th century
A very typical example of a certain person or thing.
(in Jungian psychology) a primitive mental image inherited from the earliest human ancestors, and supposed to be present in the collective unconscious.
Examples of Archetype in a sentence
"Her prized tulips appeared to be the perfect archetype of the species."
"He was studying how children's drawings could represent certain archetypes."
Popularity Over Time
In Greek, “arkhetupon” means “something moulded first as a model.” This definition transfers to the English word, archetype, as a standard example, or an imitation of the original. In literature, art, and mythology, an archetype is a recurrent symbol. If it’s immediately recognizable, it just might be an archetype.
Did you Know?
Swiss psychologist Carl Jung believed that humans share a collective unconscious, represented by archetypes, or primitive mental images. Jungian archetypes include the wise old man, the child, the mother and the maiden.