A single very brief appearance, especially by a prominent celebrity in a movie or song.
To appear in a cameo role.
Borrowed from Italian cammeo, from Medieval Latin camaeus, of Unknown origin. The movie sense is short for “cameo role” referring to a famous person who was playing no character, but him or herself. Like a cameo brooch — a low-relief carving of a person’s head or bust — the actor or celebrity is instantly recognizable. More recently, it has come to refer to any short appearances, whether as a character or as oneself. camaieu.
Modern English dictionary
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