Also found in: Thesaurus, Medical, Encyclopedia.


A small, representative system having analogies to a larger system in constitution, configuration, or development: "He sees the auto industry as a microcosm of the U.S. itself" (William J. Hampton).

[Middle English microcosme, a human considered as a little universe, from Middle French, from Old French, from Late Latin mīcrocosmus, from Greek mīkros kosmos : mīkros, small + kosmos, world, order.]

mi′cro·cos′mic (-kŏz′mĭk), mi′cro·cos′mi·cal (-mĭ-kəl) adj.
mi′cro·cos′mi·cal·ly adv.
American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition. Copyright © 2016 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.


in a microcosmic manner
Collins English Dictionary – Complete and Unabridged, 12th Edition 2014 © HarperCollins Publishers 1991, 1994, 1998, 2000, 2003, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2011, 2014
References in periodicals archive ?
Microcosmically, multiple cysts with dilated cystic space were filled with homogeneous acidophilus granules.
That is, to return to Lyotard, the postmodern incredulity towards metanarratives expresses itself microcosmically in postmodern fiction as an incredulity towards narrative itself and thus towards its trappings, namely, organized, linear plot and reliable, coherent points of view.
Instead of a site that microcosmically models the settler's cultivation of the country, or one that stages a Darwinian battle of different kinds, the concerns of Bethell's garden tend to be 'merely' domestic.
By deftly contrasting the stillness of the genteel atmosphere with the motion of the gin microcosmically contained in the cup, Yaeger suggests, Welty indicts the Fairchild family for their ignorance of plantation labor to the extreme; if the true story of cotton production is so omnipresent, vibrating so noticeably in their very best crockery, how can this family possibly still ignore it?
Looking at the matter macrocosmically and microcosmically the picture becomes comprehensible when one comes out of one's self, stands impartial and sees the "other" in his/her own situation; and also, when one comes out of his/her geographical set-up and judges others from the standpoint of his/her situations.
And that is the 'God relationship.' This is like a microbial version of the universe where everything is microcosmically attached and connected to the thing that is smaller to the point of nothingness.
The history of chemistry microcosmically demonstrates this trend towards disciplinary coherence.
While, microcosmically, it means rectification of injustice in personal relations between people; social justice in its macrocosmic form indicates complex and dynamic social change, in the edifice of a welfare state, aimed at: harmonizing rival claims and interests of different groups, and reconciling individual conduct with general social welfare; removing social, economic and political imbalances (and all forms of inequalities) from social order; and/or providing distributive justice and proportional equality to all, especially the deprived sections of society (Lahoti 2004, p.100; Raju 2006, p.
Microcosmically, it knows that gas phase pressure [P.sub.g] and water phase pressure [P.sub.w] are related by capillary pressure ([P.sub.c]), as expressed in the following equation:
Even so, his allusion to the "fragrant zodiac" reminds us as well that the garden, in its artifice, microcosmically suggests a greater pattern of design and correlatively a greater designer.
However, microcosmically, it may also be not the body politic but the body somantic of the poet; the garret the Brain/Mind/Soul (Dickinson uses these terms synonymously and interchangeably in many of her poems).
Here, nature gets addressed at a more formal and idealized distance, while the prosaic gets microcosmically naturalized.