(?), n. [L. aemulatio: cf. F. mulation.] 1. The endeavor to equal or to excel another in qualities or actions; an assiduous striving to equal or excel another; rivalry.
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A noble emulation heats your breast.
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2. Jealous rivalry; envy; envious contention.
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Such factious emulations shall arise.

3. imitation (of an admired model) for the purpose of improving one's own qualities.

[Chivalry was] an ideal which, if never met with in real life, was acknowledged by all as the highest model for emulation.
Thomas Bulfinch (Mythology)

4. (Computers) the imitation of the actions of a computer system or component, especially a processor, by means of a computer program, with the goal of predicting the behavior and performance characteristics of that system without actually manufacturing it.

1996 marked the year that emulation became a mainstream design verification tool.
Computer Design (editorial, 1998)

Syn. -- Competition; rivalry; contest; contention; strife. -- Emulation, Competition, Rivalry. Competition is the struggle of two or more persons for the same object. Emulation is an ardent desire for superiority, arising from competition, but now implying, of necessity, any improper feeling. Rivalry is a personal contest, and, almost of course, has a selfish object and gives rise to envy. "Competition and emulation have honor for their basis; rivalry is but a desire for selfish gratification. Competition and emulation animate to effort; rivalry usually produces hatred. Competition and emulation seek to merit success; rivalry is contented with obtaining it." Crabb.
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