Microcosmos

microcosm

[mahy-kruh-koz-uhm]
noun
1.
a little world; a world in miniature (opposed to macrocosm ).
2.
anything that is regarded as a world in miniature.
3.
human beings, humanity, society, or the like, viewed as an epitome or miniature of the world or universe.
Also called microcosmos [mahy-kruh-koz-muhs, -mohs] .


Origin:
1150–1200; Middle English microcosme < Medieval Latin mīcrocosmus < Greek mīkròs kósmos small world. See micro-, cosmos

microcosmic, microcosmical, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
Cite This Source Link To microcosmos
Collins
World English Dictionary
microcosm or microcosmos (ˈmaɪkrəʊˌkɒzəm, ˌmaɪkrəʊˈkɒzmɒs)
 
n
1.  a miniature representation of something, esp a unit, group, or place regarded as a copy of a larger one
2.  man regarded as epitomizing the universe
 
[C15: via Medieval Latin from Greek mikros kosmos little world]
 
microcosmos or microcosmos
 
n
 
[C15: via Medieval Latin from Greek mikros kosmos little world]
 
micro'cosmic or microcosmos
 
adj
 
micro'cosmical or microcosmos
 
adj

Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 10th Edition
2009 © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009
Cite This Source
Etymonline
Word Origin & History

microcosm
1426, "human nature, man viewed as the epitome of creation," lit. "miniature world," from M.Fr. microcosme, from M.L. microcosmus, from Gk. mikros "small" + kosmos "world" (see cosmos). General sense of "a community constituting a world unto itself" is attested from 1526.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source
American Heritage
Cultural Dictionary

microcosm definition


A representation of something on a much smaller scale. Microcosm means “small world,” and in the thought of the Renaissance, it was applied specifically to human beings, who were considered to be small-scale models of the universe, with all its variety and contradiction. (Compare macrocosm.)

The American Heritage® New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
Cite This Source
Copyright © 2014 Dictionary.com, LLC. All rights reserved.
  • Please Login or Sign Up to use the Recent Searches feature