microcosm


microcosm
/muy"kreuh koz'euhm/, n.
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 /muy'kreuh koz"meuhs, -mohs/.
[1150-1200; ME microcosme < ML microcosmus < Gk mikròs kósmos small world. See MICRO-, COSMOS]

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      (from Greek mikros kosmos, “little world”), a Western philosophical term designating man (human being) as being a “little world” in which the macrocosm, or universe, is reflected. The ancient Greek idea of a world soul (e.g., in Plato) animating the universe had as a corollary the idea of the human body as a miniature universe animated by its own soul. The notion of the microcosm dates, in Western philosophy, from Socratic times ( Democritus specifically referred to it)—i.e., from the 5th century BC. Propagated especially by the Neoplatonists, the idea passed to the Gnostics, to the Christian scholastics, to the Jewish Kabbalists, and to such Renaissance philosophers as Paracelsus. The supposed analogy between the whole and its parts served not only to develop a cosmology in which the reality of the individual received due attention but was also fundamental to astrology and other fields in which belief in a metaphysical relationship between man and the rest of nature is postulated. In later philosophy the monadology (monad) of G.W. Leibniz presented a comparable view of man and the universe; and, in the 19th century, Rudolf Lotze chose Mikrokosmus as the title of his major work on the theory of knowledge and reality.

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Universalium. 2010.

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  • MICROCOSM — (from Gr. mikros kosmos; small world ), term in the Western philosophical tradition referring to man as an epitome of the universe (the macrocos) in his parts and structure. The Arabic (ʿālam ṣaghīr), Hebrew (olam katan), and Latin (mundis minor) …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Microcosm — may refer to: Macrocosm and microcosm, a philosophical idea Microcosm (CERN), a museum near Geneva, Switzerland Microcosm (video game), a 1993 shoot em up by Psygnosis Microcosm Ltd, a UK software protection company Microcosm (clock), a unique… …   Wikipedia

  • microcosm — MICROCÓSM, (rar) microcosmuri, s.n. (livr.) Reprezentare redusă a Universului. ♦ Omul, considerat ca o reprezentare redusă a Universului; lumea interioară a omului. [var.: microcósmos s.n.] – Din fr. microcosme, lat. microcosmus. Trimis de… …   Dicționar Român

  • Microcosm — Mi cro*cosm, n. [F. microcosme, L. microcosmus, fr. Gr. mikro s small + ko smos the world.] 1. A little world; a miniature universe. Hence (so called by Paracelsus), a man, as a supposed epitome of the exterior universe or great world. Opposed to …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • microcosm — (n.) c.1200, mycrocossmos (modern form from early 15c.), human nature, man viewed as the epitome of creation, lit. miniature world, from M.Fr. microcosme and in earliest use directly from M.L. microcosmus, from Gk. mikros small (see MICA (Cf.… …   Etymology dictionary

  • microcosm — ► NOUN 1) a thing regarded as encapsulating in miniature the characteristics of something much larger. 2) humankind regarded as the epitome of the universe. DERIVATIVES microcosmic adjective. ORIGIN from Greek mikros kosmos little world …   English terms dictionary

  • microcosm — [mī′krō kä΄zəm] n. [ME microcosme < ML microcosmus < LGr mikros kosmos, little world: see MICRO & COSMOS] a little world; miniature universe; specif., a) man regarded as an epitome of the world b) a community regarded as a miniature or… …   English World dictionary

  • Microcosm —  Pour l’article homonyme, voir Microcosm (jeu vidéo).  Microcosm Informations géographiques …   Wikipédia en Français

  • microcosm — n. in microcosm (the whole nation in microcosm) * * * in microcosm (the whole nation in microcosm) …   Combinatory dictionary

  • microcosm — mi|cro|cos|m [ˈmaıkrəukɔzəm US krouka: ] n [Date: 1100 1200; : Medieval Latin; Origin: microcosmus, from Greek mikros kosmos small world ] a small group, society, or place that has the same qualities as a much larger one →↑macrocosm microcosm of… …   Dictionary of contemporary English

  • microcosm — UK [ˈmaɪkrəʊˌkɒz(ə)m] / US [ˈmaɪkrəˌkɑzəm] noun [countable] Word forms microcosm : singular microcosm plural microcosms formal something small that contains or represents all the features or qualities of something larger microcosm of: The village …   English dictionary


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