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The word model is used in various contexts meaning something (abstract or physical) that represents 'the real thing'. It is often a simplified version, but it can also mean an especially good example; a physical model of something large is usually smaller, and of something very small is larger.

A physical model of something that can move, like a vehicle or machine, may be completely static, or have parts that can be moved manually, or be powered. A physical model may show inner parts that are normally not visible.

The purpose of a physical model on a smaller scale may be to have a better overview, for testing purposes, as hobby or toy.

The purpose of a physical model on a larger scale may be to see the structure of things that are normally too small to see properly or to see at all, for example a model of an insect or of a molecule.

A physical model of an animal shows how it is built without it walking or flying away, and without danger, and if the real animal is not available. A soft model of an animal is popular among children and some adults as cuddly toy[?].

A model of a human may be a doll or a statue.

The word model has applications throughout science with variations according to the subject matter under discussion. In general, it indicates an object which we study, not for its intrinsic interest, but because it is a formalized or simplified representation of a class of phenomena which can be studied easily. See also Model theory.

Model is also a term for persons employed as human props in art, fashion, cosmetics, etc. -- see model (person).

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