Definition of identical in English:



  • 1Similar in every detail; exactly alike.

    ‘four girls in identical green outfits’
    ‘the passage on the second floor was identical to the one below’
    • ‘For the final day, Torrance has picked an outfit identical to the one he wore while sinking that putt 17 years ago.’
    • ‘The new towns today are not identical to the blueprints that birthed them.’
    • ‘The survival rate for men in America is nearly identical to women.’
    • ‘The bakers Warburtons are running a TV commercial for a new loaf that is identical to a wholemeal loaf - except that it is white.’
    • ‘In many ways, many of the church's messages today are similar but far from identical to those preached by Martin Luther.’
    • ‘They found it in several Impressionist paintings in which some of the main visual themes were identical to myopic vision.’
    • ‘After the exam I was handed off to the saleslady; we found frames identical to my present set.’
    • ‘Some of the ‘actors’ live lives identical to the parts they play in the movie.’
    • ‘And in this film, more than any before it, the generated people look almost identical to the real thing.’
    • ‘It was otherwise identical to the other Pizza Express restaurants in every detail.’
    • ‘To the untrained ear, the Wagnerian clarinet sounds almost identical to its more modern cousin.’
    • ‘As with the prints in the palm of human beings, which varies from person to person, no cobra is identical to another, he said.’
    • ‘Each room is bright white and practically identical to the next, with only minor differences.’
    • ‘The scam is almost identical to one three years ago when a group of South Africans trying to con another Asian entrepreneur were caught in a police sting.’
    • ‘The really fascinating thing about apples, though, is that each apple is genetically identical to other apples of the same variety.’
    • ‘This show was almost identical to the afternoon show, with a song or two swapped out on the set list, plus a song from Silver as a favor to label owner, Cory.’
    • ‘Their intermarriage rate is 21%, nearly identical to that of other religious groups.’
    • ‘It's always different, and no situation is identical to anything else.’
    • ‘According to Emily's father, Ross looks almost identical to his porcelain-complexioned daughter.’
    • ‘He was playing a tune that was almost identical to Rod Stewart's Sailing but wasn't quite, presumably for copyright reasons.’
    similar, alike, indistinguishable, uniform, twin, interchangeable, undifferentiated, homogeneous, of a piece, cut from the same cloth
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1(of twins) developed from a single fertilized ovum, and therefore of the same sex and usually very similar in appearance.
      Compare with fraternal
      • ‘If one of a pair of identical twins develops leukaemia, in one out of four cases the other will also do so, within weeks or months.’
      • ‘Studies of identical twins suggest that your baseline metabolism is determined at birth.’
      • ‘Jesse and William, identical twins, were born two years later, and Tyrelle, two years after them.’
      • ‘The shared genetic identity of identical twins does not mean two persons who are simply clones of one another.’
      • ‘She took into account the different ties and shirts, and realized that the pair must be identical twins.’
      • ‘Overall, a person with a gay identical twin is at least 10 times more likely to be gay.’
      • ‘Siamese twins are identical twins who develop with a single placenta from a single zygote.’
      • ‘Born as identical twins in Wales, they grew up in the UK with a mother with major mental illness and a shared history of abuse.’
      • ‘My sister is Reese, and she's my identical twin, but our personalities are like night and day.’
      • ‘Just as identical twins are unique people, not the same person split in two.’
      • ‘Since they are identical twins, they have to be the same sex, so twin 1 might be John Smith and twin 2 might be James Smith.’
      • ‘In his place now stands Cary, Grant's identical twin brother plus an extra hundred pounds.’
      • ‘Unless you have an identical twin with extra hair to donate, you must serve as your own donor.’
      • ‘I didn't know why but having identical twins sounded so cute.’
      • ‘It is not for nothing that the fingerprints of identical twins are not identical.’
      • ‘Even identical twins do not have exactly the same interests or personality.’
      • ‘The audience will be made up of groups including identical twins and students (the rest will be confirmed).’
      • ‘They are a rare form of identical twins, which are created when a fertilised egg splits into two embryos.’
      • ‘The prenatal environment also has a major influence on differences between identical twins.’
      • ‘They were identical twins, though, and they loved each other's company.’
    2. 1.2[attributive](of something encountered on separate occasions) the same.
      ‘she stole a suitcase from the identical station at which she had been arrested before’
      • ‘The solicitor should not be exposed to two separate actions for the identical loss.’
      • ‘Does a restaurant get three stars here only if the identical restaurant would get three stars in Paris?’
      the same, the very same, one and the same, the selfsame, the very
      View synonyms
  • 2Logic Mathematics
    Expressing an identity.

    ‘an identical proposition’
    • ‘When the series terminates with the identical operation, G is said to be an integrable group; in the contrary case G is called non- integrable.’
    • ‘Two sets are said to be identical when for each element of the one set an identical element of the other set can be given.’


Late 16th century ( identical): from medieval Latin identicus, from late Latin identitas (see identity).