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[hem-i-sfeer] /ˈhɛm ɪˌsfɪər/
(often initial capital letter) half of the terrestrial globe or celestial sphere, especially one of the halves into which the earth is divided.
a map or projection representing one of these halves.
a half of a sphere.
Anatomy. either of the lateral halves of the cerebrum or cerebellum.
the area within which something occurs or dominates; sphere; realm.
Origin of hemisphere
1325-75; < Latin hēmisphaerium < Greek hēmisphaírion; replacing Middle English emysperie < Old French emispere < Latin Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for hemisphere
  • The left cerebral hemisphere controls movement of the right side of the body.
  • To a certain extent, lack of greater trade volumes is merely an indicator of the small size of southern hemisphere economies.
  • This is a gripping, expertly told story of one of the most complicated foreign policy relationship in the western hemisphere.
  • Fortunately, his wife Geraldine welcomed the fact that much of his research would take place in the southern hemisphere.
  • Seasonal changes in snow cover mostly occur in the northern hemisphere.
  • Normally, oil stocks decline over the winter in the northern hemisphere, thanks to heavy use of heating oil.
  • At the time of transfer, the rubber hemisphere is stretched out flat.
  • While the technology is designed to monitor a specific area, it could also be used to monitor an entire hemisphere of the brain.
  • As the southern-hemisphere summer turns to autumn, the priority is shelter.
  • The left side of her body-controlled by the right hemisphere-was paralyzed.
British Dictionary definitions for hemisphere


one half of a sphere
  1. half of the terrestrial globe, divided into northern and southern hemispheres by the equator or into eastern and western hemispheres by some meridians, usually 0° and 180°
  2. a map or projection of one of the hemispheres
either of the two halves of the celestial sphere that lie north or south of the celestial equator
(anatomy) short for cerebral hemisphere
Derived Forms
hemispheric (ˌhɛmɪˈsfɛrɪk), hemispherical, adjective
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for hemisphere

late 14c., hemysperie, in reference to the celestial sphere, from Latin hemisphaerium, from Greek hemisphairion, from hemi- "half" (see hemi-) + sphaira "sphere" (see sphere). Spelling reformed 16c. Of the Earth, from 1550s; of the brain, 1804.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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hemisphere in Medicine

hemisphere hem·i·sphere (hěm'ĭ-sfēr')

  1. A half of a symmetrical spherical structure as divided by a plane of symmetry.

  2. Either of the lateral halves of the cerebrum; a cerebral hemisphere.

hem'i·spher'ic (-sfēr'ĭk, -sfěr'-) or hem'i·spher'i·cal adj.
The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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hemisphere in Science
  1. One half of a sphere, formed by a plane that passes through the center of the sphere.

  2. Either the northern or southern half of the Earth as divided by the equator, or the eastern or western half as divided by a meridian, especially the prime meridian.

  3. One half of the celestial sphere as divided by any of various great circles, especially the celestial equator and the ecliptic. See more at celestial sphere.

  4. See cerebral hemisphere.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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hemisphere in Culture

hemisphere definition

Any half of the Earth's surface.

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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