Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 5th Edition.

  • noun A condition or place of great disorder or confusion.
  • noun A disorderly mass; a jumble.
  • noun The disordered state of unformed matter and infinite space supposed in some cosmogonic views to have existed before the ordered universe.
  • noun Chaos theory.
  • noun Mathematics A dynamical system that has a sensitive dependence on its initial conditions.
  • noun Obsolete An abyss; a chasm.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A vacant space or chasm; empty, immeasurable space.
  • noun The confused or formless elementary state, not fully existing, in which the universe is supposed to have been latent before the order, uniformities, or laws of nature had been developed or created: the opposite of cosmos.
  • noun A confused mixture of parts or elements; confusion; disorder.
  • noun In the language of the alchemists, the atmosphere: first so used by Paracelsus.
  • noun [capitalized] The void of unformed matter personified and deemed by some among the Greeks as the oldest of the gods.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun Archaic An empty, immeasurable space; a yawning chasm.
  • noun The confused, unorganized condition or mass of matter before the creation of distinct and orderly forms.
  • noun Any confused or disordered collection or state of things; a confused mixture; confusion; disorder.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun obsolete A vast chasm or abyss.
  • noun The unordered state of matter in classical accounts of cosmogony
  • noun Any state of disorder, any confused or amorphous mixture or conglomeration.
  • noun obsolete, rare A given medium; a space in which something exists or lives; an environment.
  • noun mathematics Behaviour of iterative non-linear systems in which arbitrarily small variations in initial conditions become magnified over time.
  • noun fantasy One of the two metaphysical forces of the world in some fantasy settings, as opposed to law.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • noun (Greek mythology) the most ancient of gods; the personification of the infinity of space preceding creation of the universe
  • noun the formless and disordered state of matter before the creation of the cosmos
  • noun a state of extreme confusion and disorder
  • noun (physics) a dynamical system that is extremely sensitive to its initial conditions

Etymologies

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

[Middle English, formless primordial space, from Latin, from Greek khaos.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

Borrowed from Ancient Greek χάος (khaos, "vast chasm, void")

Examples

Comments

New comments are temporarily disabled while we update our database.

  • An entirely separate concept from anarchy. Best illustrated, perhaps, by Ian Malcolm in Jurassic Park. See also butterfly effect.

    December 26, 2006

  • winner of the contest held sepcifically for youths.

    In the justification given, it is mentioned that 'chaos' means as much as a' void' - definitely not what I think when I see my room...

    April 26, 2008

  • I am not tired or sad

    I see whiteness, towers of chaos

    I touch the ink, my palms a paradise of speech.

    - Qassim Haddad, 'Space'.

    September 16, 2008

  • The Chaos and The Chaos

    August 12, 2009

  • Chaos in Singapore.

    January 11, 2010