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Longman Dictionary of Contemporary English
▪ She writes enjoyable parodies in the style of 19th century romantic novels.
▪ Tallis has written a cruel parody of Hartman's prose.
▪ U.N. observers described the election as a parody of democratic process.
▪ Ancient parody was free of any nihilistic denial.
▪ But all three novels also exhibit significant variations on parody as it has been practised in the past.
▪ It's a wicked parody of space blasters, in particular Gradius.
▪ Their faces were like the grotesque masks of street carnivals, their clothes the cruel parodies of stamping clowns.
▪ To tie in with the hubbub comes the most successful parody of the group, the Rutles.
▪ Two or three of us smile, those of us who recognize the parody.
▪ Well-meant though it was, the gesture was terrible, creating a ghastly parody of femininity.
▪ The movie parodies such classics as "Gone with the Wind" and "Casablanca."
▪ Barry now parodies himself even better than Spitting Image.
▪ For example, the ability to parody a style can be a useful skill.
▪ Four of them parody the fire brigade, pecking and pulling a piece of bread.
▪ He parodied my groping stumble across the stage to the podium and gathered up the skirt to reveal hairy legs and bloomers.
▪ He made toys that parodied her innocent amusements and those of her brothers and she trembled when he raised his leonine voice.
▪ Some companies deliberately parodied the new trade-names, safe in the knowledge they would never be taken seriously.
▪ Thus language begins to parody itself, and so does literature, as Joyce shows in the Ithaca section of Ulysses.
The Collaborative International Dictionary

parody \par"o*dy\ (p[a^]r"[-o]*d[y^]), n.; pl. Parodies (p[a^]r"[-o]*d[i^]z). [L. parodia, Gr. parw,di`a; para` beside + 'w,dh` a song: cf. F. parodie. See Para-, and Ode.]

  1. A writing in which the language or sentiment of an author is mimicked; especially, a kind of literary pleasantry, in which what is written on one subject is altered, and applied to another by way of burlesque; travesty.

    The lively parody which he wrote . . . on Dryden's ``Hind and Panther'' was received with great applause.

  2. A popular maxim, adage, or proverb. [Obs.]


parody \par"o*dy\, v. t. [imp. & p. p. parodied; p. pr. & vb. n. parodying.] [Cf. F. parodier.] To write a parody upon; to burlesque.

I have translated, or rather parodied, a poem of Horace.

Douglas Harper's Etymology Dictionary

1590s (first recorded use in English is in Ben Jonson), from or in imitation of Latin parodia "parody," from Greek paroidia "burlesque song or poem," from para- "beside, parallel to" (see para- (1), in this case, "mock-") + oide "song, ode" (see ode). The meaning "poor or feeble imitation" is from 1830. Related: Parodic; parodical.


c.1745, from parody (n.). Related: Parodied; parodying.


n. 1 A work or performance that imitates another work or performance with ridicule or irony. 2 (context archaic English) A popular maxim, adage, or proverb. vb. To make a parody of something.

  1. n. a composition that imitates somebody's style in a humorous way [syn: lampoon, spoof, sendup, mockery, takeoff, burlesque, travesty, charade, pasquinade, put-on]

  2. humorous or satirical mimicry [syn: mockery, takeoff]

  3. v. make a spoof of or make fun of

  4. make a parody of; "The students spoofed the teachers" [syn: spoof, burlesque]

  5. [also: parodied]


A parody (; also called spoof, send-up, take-off or lampoon), in use, is a work created to imitate, make fun of, or comment on an original work, its subject, author, style, or some other target, by means of satiric or ironic imitation. As the literary theorist Linda Hutcheon puts it, "parody … is imitation, not always at the expense of the parodied text." Another critic, Simon Dentith, defines parody as "any cultural practice which provides a relatively polemical allusive imitation of another cultural production or practice." Parody may be found in art or culture, including literature, music (although "parody" in music has an earlier, somewhat different meaning than for other art forms), animation, gaming and film.

The writer and critic John Gross observes in his Oxford Book of Parodies, that parody seems to flourish on territory somewhere between pastiche ("a composition in another artist's manner, without satirical intent") and burlesque (which "fools around with the material of high literature and adapts it to low ends"). Meanwhile, the Encyclopédie of Denis Diderot distinguishes between the parody and the burlesque, "A good parody is a fine amusement, capable of amusing and instructing the most sensible and polished minds; the burlesque is a miserable buffoonery which can only please the populace." Historically, when a formula grows tired, as in the case of the moralistic melodramas in the 1910s, it retains value only as a parody, as demonstrated by the Buster Keaton shorts that mocked that genre.

Usage examples of "parody".

So he invented a new antipope, Paschal III, organizing a parody of a conclave with a few ecclesiastics he collected practically off the street.

He was amused at her impatience and accurately predicted what would happen: she would seduce him and then afterward in a parody of concern she would make an extortionary offer.

In the collection he parodies some of the naive but popular futurological scenarios, while hypothesizing on ideas whose extravagance extends beyond the scope of contemporary scientific theories.

May Day festival service, celebrated by a choir of birds, who sing an ingenious, but what must have seemed in those days a more than slightly profane, paraphrase or parody of the matins for Trinity Sunday, to the praise of Cupid.

Before the Aryan groups came to prominence, there was a spree of cult violence not widely recognized as millenarian but in fact showing so many signs of the medieval form as to seem a knife-happy parody.

Soliloquized parody of a broadcast-television advertisement for shampoo, utilizing four convex mirrors, two planar mirrors, and one actress.

In nature it was wholly decorative and conventional, and consisted of crude spirals and angles roughly following the quintile mathematical tradition of the Old Ones, yet seemingly more like a parody than a perpetuation of that tradition.

He gets on the bed, straddles her, looks into her eyes when he strangles her, listens to her fight to breathe, feels her body convulsing under his in that sick parody of sex.

I must admit I was unsettled by the parody of my name being used in a trashy novel, but the whole thing was nonsense.

This was caricaturing, making a parody of her art and what she did, an unamusing joke against herself.

It had the flattish star shape of all the tailless, backboneless creatures of this world, yet with legs, arms, and head that parodied humankind.

They saw a tall, graceful girl in the droll parody of a kitchen-maid who had wiped a tearful face with a blacklead brush.

Rodolfo demanded, in an intentionally ironic parody of the typical commissa rio di polizia, given to fixed ideas and the third degree.

In the collection he parodies some of the naive but popular futurological scenarios, while hypothesizing on ideas whose extravagance extends beyond the scope of contemporary scientific theories.

The mock-heroic mingles witha variety of other terms: comic-epic, mock-epic, travesty, burlesque, parody, hudibrastic poem, and Menippean satire.