a state of utter confusion or disorder; a total lack of organization or order.
any confused, disorderly mass: a chaos of meaningless phrases.
the infinity of space or formless matter supposed to have preceded the existence of the ordered universe.
(initial capital letter) the personification of this in any of several ancient Greek myths.
Obsolete. a chasm or abyss.
The first meaning in English was “an immeasurable and formless void, infinite darkness,” especially in reference to the state that preceded God’s Creation of the universe. The current meaning “a state of utter confusion and disorder (resembling the primordial state)” first appeared about 1533.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023
British Dictionary definitions for chaos
complete disorder; utter confusion
(usually capital) the disordered formless matter supposed to have existed before the ordered universe
- chaotic (keɪˈɒtɪk), adjective
- chaotically, adverb
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
Scientific definitions for chaos
The behavior of systems that follow deterministic laws but appear random and unpredictable. Chaotic systems very are sensitive to initial conditions; small changes in those conditions can lead to quite different outcomes. One example of chaotic behavior is the flow of air in conditions of turbulence. See more at fractal.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Cultural definitions for chaos
The New Dictionary of Cultural Literacy, Third Edition Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.