Definitions

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. Someone or something that very closely resembles another; someone or something easily mistaken for another.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a person who is almost identical to another

Etymologies

See ringer ("substitute") and ring the changes (Wiktionary)

Examples

  • He had jet-black hair topping a pink, cherubic face, and with the deep permanent creases of laughter lines radiating from his eyes and curving around his mouth, he was a dead ringer for the cheerful, happy-golucky extrovert who is the life and soul of the party where the guests park their brains along with their hats and coats.

    Ice Station Zebra

  • Underneath it the silhouette of a long-haired, wasp-waisted, and overly endowed woman kind of a dead ringer for Sheila swung from one side of a pole to another.

    Balancing in High Heels

  • Sons don’t resemble their fathers in every detail, I’ve noticed it time and time again, and there’s many a woman brought to bed of a son who is profoundly thankful for that fact, and expends a great deal of her postpartum energy assuring the sprog’s tata that the sprog is a dead ringer for her great-uncle Lucius Tiddlypuss.

    The First Man in Rome

  • Three men were standing around holding drinks: a Semitic-looking guy in tweeds, a small, trim number wearing a tennis sweater and white ducks, and a dead ringer composite for HIM — a silver-maned man pushing fifty, topping six feet by at least two inches, as lanky as Mal Considine but ten times as handsome.

    The Big Nowhere

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