- Date: 1545
- 1 : the original pattern or model of which all things of the same type are representations or copies : prototype; also : a perfect example
- 2 : idea
- 3 : an inherited idea or mode of thought in the psychology of C. G. Jung that is derived from the experience of the race and is present in the unconscious of the individual
An archetype (pronounced /ˈɑrkɪtaɪp/) is an original model of a person, ideal example, or a prototype upon which others are copied, patterned, or emulated; a symbol universally recognized by all. In psychology, an archetype is a model of a person, personality, or behavior.
In philosophy, archetypes since Plato at least, refer to ideal forms of the perceived or sensible things or types. Archetypes can be found in nearly all forms of literature, with their motifs being predominantly rooted in folklore.