- a picture, description, etc., ludicrously exaggerating the peculiarities or defects of persons or things: His caricature of the mayor in this morning’s paper is the best he’s ever drawn.
- the art or process of producing such pictures, descriptions, etc.
- any imitation or copy so distorted or inferior as to be ludicrous.
verb (used with object), car·i·ca·tured, car·i·ca·tur·ing.
- to make a caricature of; represent in caricature.
- a pictorial, written, or acted representation of a person, which exaggerates his characteristic traits for comic effect
- a ludicrously inadequate or inaccurate imitationhe is a caricature of a statesman
- (tr) to represent in caricature or produce a caricature of
1749, from caricature (n.). Related: Caricatured; caricaturing.
1748 (figurative), 1750 (literal), from French caricature (18c.), from Italian caricatura “satirical picture; an exaggeration,” literally “an overloading,” from caricare “to load, exaggerate,” from Vulgar Latin carricare “to load a car” (see charge (v.)). The Italian form had been used in English from 1680s and was common 18c.
In art or literature, portrayal of an individual or thing that exaggerates and distorts prominent characteristics so as to make them appear ridiculous. Caricature is commonly a medium for satire.