A sample is a particular instantiation of a universal. Also, an example of a larger group. Often used to refer to bits of food distributed at retail supermarkets meant to entice consumers to buy larger quantities of the "sampled" product.
In the context of music, a sample is a short portion or loop of one song cut out and re-used as a musical instrument in another. Sampling forms the basis for hip hop and much of electronic music. In 1996, DJ Shadow released the first album made entirely of samples, Endtroducing. In recent years such music has soared in popularity, with multiple number-one hits and Grammy-winning songs being made entirely from samples of other songs.