1844, from model (n.).
1570s, "likeness made to scale; architect's set of designs," from Middle French modelle (16c., Modern French modèle), from Italian modello "a model, mold," from Vulgar Latin *modellus, from Latin modulus "a small measure, standard," diminutive of modus "manner, measure" (from PIE root *med- "take appropriate measures").
Sense of "thing or person to be imitated" is 1630s. Meaning "motor vehicle of a particular design" is from 1900 (such as Model T, 1908; Ford's other early models included C, F, and B). Sense of "artist's model" is first recorded 1690s; that of "fashion model" is from 1904. German, Swedish modell, Dutch, Danish model are from French or Italian.
1660s, "fashion in clay or wax," from model (n.). Earlier was modelize (c. 1600). From 1915 in the sense "to act as a fashion model, to display (clothes)." Related: Modeled; modeling; modelled; modelling.
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