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2017 Word of the Year

miniature

[min-ee-uh-cher, -choo r, min-uh-cher] /ˈmɪn i ə tʃər, -ˌtʃʊər, ˈmɪn ə tʃər/
noun
1.
a representation or image of something on a small or reduced scale.
2.
a greatly reduced or abridged form or copy.
3.
a very small painting, especially a portrait, on ivory, vellum, or the like.
4.
the art of executing such a painting.
5.
an illumination in an illuminated manuscript or book.
adjective
6.
being, on, or represented on a small scale; reduced.
Idioms
7.
in miniature, in a reduced size; on a small scale:
The zoo exhibition offered a jungle in miniature.
Origin of miniature
1580-1590
1580-90; < Italian miniatura miniature painting < Medieval Latin miniātūra, equivalent to miniāt(us) (see miniate) + -ūra -ure; sense development perhaps influenced by Latin base min- (see mini-, minor)
Related forms
superminiature, adjective
Synonyms
6. minute, microscopic, diminutive, tiny, minuscule.
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for miniature
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Can our sweet Sylph be going to heaven, to seek the original of the miniature?

    Sylph Etherege Nathaniel Hawthorne
  • She took a miniature from his neck, and I drew his purse and watch from him and handed them to her.

    Ned Myers James Fenimore Cooper
  • Lucy Ann did her miniature cooking with great seriousness and care.

    Tiverton Tales Alice Brown
  • I declined the tray; so he placed it on his own knees, to act as a miniature table.

    The Room in the Dragon Volant J. Sheridan LeFanu
  • He was caught in the miniature rapid at the bottom of the pool.

    White Fang Jack London
British Dictionary definitions for miniature

miniature

/ˈmɪnɪtʃə/
noun
1.
a model, copy, or similar representation on a very small scale
2.
anything that is very small of its kind
3.
a very small painting, esp a portrait, showing fine detail on ivory or vellum
4.
a very small bottle of whisky or other spirits, which can hold 50 millilitres
5.
an illuminated letter or other decoration in a manuscript
6.
in miniature, on a small scale: games are real life in miniature
adjective
7.
greatly reduced in size
8.
on a small scale; minute
Word Origin
C16: from Italian, from Medieval Latin miniātūra, from miniāre to paint red, (in illuminating manuscripts); from minium
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 miniature
n.

1580s, "a reduced image," from Italian miniatura "manuscript illumination or small picture," from past participle of miniare "to illuminate a manuscript," from Latin miniare "to paint red," from minium "red lead," used in ancient times to make red ink, a word said to be of Iberian origin. Sense development is because pictures in medieval manuscripts were small, but no doubt there was influence as well from the similar-sounding Latin words that express smallness: minor, minimus, minutus, etc.

adj.

"small," 1714, from minature (n.). Of dog breeds, from 1889. Of golf, from 1893.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Word Value for miniature

11
14
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