Definition of sampler in US English:



  • 1A piece of embroidery worked in various stitches as a specimen of skill, typically containing the alphabet and some mottoes.

    • ‘‘I'm entering my double wedding ring quilt, and a couple of blouses that I embroidered and my new sampler,’ Teresa said.’
    • ‘Painstakingly researched, it has been more than ten years in the making, and offers a unique survey of embroidered map samplers produced across the UK during the late eighteenth and early nineteenth centuries.’
    • ‘A sampler in wool, embroidered by Mary aged ten in 1871, put us all to shame by the intricate work she had done.’
    • ‘Keep your stitch sampler for future reference.’
    • ‘Mary's marking sampler, with six alphabets worked in black in the Quaker block style, names Alexandria as its place of origin.’
    • ‘The alphabets that embellished schoolgirl samplers signified both a girl's literacy and her future role as keeper of household textiles, which before industrialization were far more valuable than furniture.’
    • ‘Many gifts were hand-made; embroidered handkerchiefs and samplers, home-made peppermints or sugared almonds wrapped in hand-decorated paper.’
    • ‘If you are handy with a needle and embroidery floss, create a cross-stitch sampler featuring those words.’
    • ‘The Philosopher's Room is a heady mix of high art and popular culture, decorated with samplers embroidered with witty, mock-homespun proverbs.’
    • ‘Under the tutelage of the Sisters of Charity of Saint Joseph's, she would have acquired needlework skills by working a sampler or pictorial silk embroidery.’
    • ‘Although from very modest circumstances, a number of students acquired needle skills and worked samplers that were the equivalent in style and expertise to those worked in the most fashionable schools in Baltimore.’
    • ‘Instead of stealing penny sweet-meats from the local mercantilist or whiling away the hours listening to recordings of voices, these idle hooligans should be home sewing samplers by candle-light or slaving in the textile mills.’
    • ‘A delicately stitched 19th century sampler conveys the idea of women's handiwork and family bonds.’
    • ‘Moreover, it shows off the skill of the needleworker, in keeping with the tradition of samplers.’
    • ‘Surviving needlework from the school ranges from simple samplers to elaborate pictures such as Charlotte's.’
    • ‘Included are samplers, embroidered pictures, portraits, sewing implements and patterns, quilts, clothing, linens, fabric swatches, photographs, and other documents.’
    • ‘Each year for the past eight years they have mounted an exhibition devoted to samplers and embroideries.’
    • ‘Long ago, when she was a little girl, one of the servants had cross stitched for her a little sampler that now hung on the wall.’
    • ‘The girls worked simple samplers in black cross-stitches with upper- and lowercase alphabets and numbers enclosed by a zigzag border.’
    • ‘The works recall stitched samplers that proclaim folksy mottoes, like ‘Home Sweet Home.’’
    needlework, needlepoint, needlecraft, sewing, cross stitch, tatting, crochet, crewel work
    View synonyms
  • 2A representative collection or example of something.

    ‘a few superb samplers of West Indian dishes’
    • ‘This sampler of Vietnamese classics - which is based on easy techniques - gives you a taste of this intriguing cuisine.’
    • ‘A sampler of this collection was also presented during a recent show of Satya Paul at Madame Tussaud's in London.’
    • ‘On these pages, we present a gallery of contemporary Western rock gardens and a sampler of rock plants.’
    • ‘Like most sampler CDs, this collection of 15 rare tracks is hit and miss.’
    • ‘It is not, however, just a sampler drawn from past recordings.’
    • ‘Still, it's fair to say that the episodes here represent a good sampler of One Step Beyond's brand of thriller television.’
    • ‘As with all the other fodder articles in this series, we close with a sampler for the air warrior/scholar - this one a list of 10 books on air mobility.’
    • ‘Finally there is a promotional screen sampler for the music of Novocaine, two trailers for the movie, production notes, some cast and crew information and a few bonus trailers for other Artisan DVDs.’
    • ‘Other ideal sampler combinations offer a couple of intensive pampering services with a treatment that focuses on homecare.’
    • ‘Despite its wide range and the huge number of songs it examines it is, at this stage, a sampler rather than a compendium.’
    • ‘Buena Vista was a sampler for people who'd never heard Cuban music.’
    • ‘If you want to know which direction world music and rock are heading in, this 16-song sampler should definitely be in the collection.’
    • ‘I have found myself drawn to a sampler CD exposing the catalogue of another small company collecting unknown gems.’
    • ‘The whole album is a sampler of electronic music.’
    • ‘For an intriguing Indian sampler party, combine several of our recipes with ready-to-eat foods.’
    • ‘I happen to love soups, and I wish restaurants would do more with them, so I was pleased to discover that Shade offers three daily selections, and a sampler trio of small cups for the inveterate browser.’
    • ‘At Falling Rock, for example, instead of offering samplers or beer flights, bartenders help customers choose by asking questions and giving them tastes.’
  • 3A person or device that takes and analyzes samples.

    • ‘Our findings are similar to those of Crebelli et al. and Tomei et al., who obtained significant correlations between benzene and alkylbenzene exposures measured by passive personal samplers near the breathing zone.’
    • ‘Rows and rows of monitoring equipment, geological survey samplers, and other technical items Evan couldn't readily identify were the only occupants.’
    • ‘The sampler has good potential for detecting microorganisms present in numbers too small to be recovered by traditional methods, such as swab or serum sampling.’
    • ‘Paper pads have long been used as personal passive samplers to monitor pesticide exposure of farmers.’
    • ‘He and coworkers developed a method, using a chamber with microbial air samplers, to collect and quantify culturable cough-generated aerosols of M. tuberculosis.’
    • ‘Comparisons of bacterial and fungal loads by culture, from samples collected with an impaction sampler, showed Staphylococcus hemolyticus and Micrococcus lutens as the most common in indoor air.’
    • ‘A lever switches a paddle gate in the picker chute and diverts some of the harvested cotton every 20 seconds into a sampler chute for collection and later analysis.’
  • 4An electronic device for sampling music and sound.

    • ‘Since divorcing their drummer last year, the trio adopted samplers and beatboxes and has been steadily gaining a reputation as one of the best live acts in town, albeit with one of the shortest sets.’
    • ‘We program loops, samples and effects in the studio over a number of weeks and then load them into our sampler which we take out with us and sequence it all.’
    • ‘The microphone; the sampler, the phonograph, the electric guitar, the DJ, all of have infringed upon the sanctimony of contemporary popular music and came out vindicated.’
    • ‘My main sampler of choice these days is the Emagic EXS - 24, but we also have Kontakt and a GigaStudio PC setup, as well as a vast array of hardware samplers.’
    • ‘Its array of synths, samplers, drum machines and effects provide endless possibilities for sound - most importantly, unique sound.’
    • ‘I toyed with a ReWire-connected session using Reason 2.5 and had no difficulties driving numerous synthesizers, samplers and drum machines with DP's sequencer.’
    • ‘He says the book is not intended to offer advice about what equipment to buy or to replace the operation manual, but is concerned with helping one create an innovative, exciting and personal sound palate using a sampler.’
    • ‘Many samplers depend on sounds recorded or installed from other instruments.’
    • ‘The New Deal breaks the conventions of electronic music by playing breakbeat house and dance music with keyboards, drums and bass instead of sequencers, samplers or turntables - and definitely no guitars.’
    • ‘Finally we will re-sample say a 20 second sequence and place it within a program on the sampler in order to use for live performance.’
    • ‘For the naysayers that claim you can't play electronic dance music without samplers or drum machines, this performance would've been a eye-opener.’
    • ‘Later in the piece, a sampler kicks in and inserts pre-recorded fragments of an African song into the mix to create a de facto trio.’
    • ‘He cobbles together frugal astral jazz, gentle funk, and 60s pop and folk using an array of keyboards and samplers - and it's nice.’
    • ‘We're two drummers, but we're using other things, too - MS10 synth bass, sequencing and samplers.’
    • ‘‘Whether you're a drummer or keyboard player, you need to know how to use samplers, sequencing software and so on,’ he says.’
    • ‘Manning a console of five turntables and assorted hidden keyboard samplers, the former college radio DJ from the San Francisco Bay area kept a trance-like beat going throughout his performance.’
    • ‘A group of five young people, aged from 19 to 21, have spent the past year overseeing work on the studio, which includes a recording deck, mixing track, samplers and turntables.’
    • ‘The note and controller data from the guitar is sent to the sampler via MAX but no processing occurs.’
    • ‘All throughout this record, the pair combine acoustic and electric instruments with samplers and various electronic devices to build a series of intricate sonic constructions with strong evocative undercurrents.’
    • ‘The Akai sampler works nicely for that kind of cue sequence because it has multiple outputs that are connected to a Crest console that feeds the various zones.’


Middle English (denoting an example to be imitated): from Old French essamplaire ‘exemplar’.