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macrocosm

[mak-ruh-koz-uh m]
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noun
  1. the great world or universe; the universe considered as a whole (opposed to microcosm).
  2. the total or entire complex structure of something: the macrocosm of war.
  3. a representation of a smaller unit or entity by a larger one, presumably of a similar structure.
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Origin of macrocosm

1590–1600; < French macrocosme < Medieval Latin macrocosmus. See macro-, cosmos
Related formsmac·ro·cos·mic, adjectivemac·ro·cos·mi·cal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

cosmos, whole, totality, nature, universe, world

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British Dictionary definitions for macrocosm

macrocosm

noun
  1. a complex structure, such as the universe or society, regarded as an entirety, as opposed to microcosms, which have a similar structure and are contained within it
  2. any complex entity regarded as a complete system in itself
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Compare microcosm
Derived Formsmacrocosmic, adjectivemacrocosmically, adverb

Word Origin

C16: via French and Latin from Greek makros kosmos great world
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

Word Origin and History for macrocosm

n.

c.1600, "the great world" (the universe, as distinct from the "little world" of man), from Old French macrocosme (c.1300) and directly from Medieval Latin macrocosmus, from Greek makros "large, long" (see macro-) + kosmos (see cosmos).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

macrocosm in Culture

macrocosm

A representation of something on a much larger scale. (Compare microcosm.)

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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.