Definitions

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

  • noun All space-time, matter, and energy, including the solar system, all stars and galaxies, and the contents of intergalactic space, regarded as a whole.
  • noun A hypothetical whole of space-time, matter, and energy that is purported to exist simultaneously with but to be different from this universe.
  • noun A model or conception of the earth and everything else that exists.
  • noun The human race or a subset of it.
  • noun A sphere of interest, activity, or understanding.

from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun The totality of existing things; all that is in dynamical connection with general experience taken collectively—embracing the Creator and creation; or psychical and material objects, but excluding the Creator; or material objects only.
  • noun The whole world; all mankind; all that meets us in experience, in a loose sense.
  • noun In logic, the collection of all the objects to which any discourse refers: as, the universe of things.

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

  • noun All created things viewed as constituting one system or whole; the whole body of things, or of phenomena; the to~ pa^n of the Greeks, the mundus of the Latins; the world; creation.

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

  • noun The sum of everything that exists in the cosmos, including time and space itself; same as the Universe.
  • noun An entity similar to our Universe; one component of a larger entity known as the multiverse.
  • noun Everything under consideration.
  • noun An imaginary collection of worlds.
  • noun Intense form of world in the sense of perspective or social setting.

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

  • noun everything that exists anywhere
  • noun (statistics) the entire aggregation of items from which samples can be drawn
  • noun everything stated or assumed in a given discussion

Etymologies

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

[Middle English, from Old French univers, from Latin ūniversum, from neuter of ūniversus, whole : ūnus, one; see oi-no- in Indo-European roots + versus, past participle of vertere, to turn; see wer- in Indo-European roots.]

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French univers, from Latin universum ("all things, as a whole, the universe"), neuter of universus ("all together, whole, entire, collective, general, literally turned or combined into one"), from uni-, combining form of unus ("one") + versus ("turned"), perfect passive participle of verto ("I turn").

Examples

  • Thus if the spherical-surface beings are living on a planet of which the solar system occupies only a negligibly small part of the spherical universe, they have no means of determining whether they are living in a finite or in an infinite universe, because the “piece of universe” to which they have access is in both cases practically plane, or Euclidean.

    Chapter 31. The Possibility of a “Finite” and Yet “Unbounded” Universe

  • Specifically the notion that what we call our universe is a 4-dimensional space-time that itself is just a surface in a higher dimensional space, called a brane, a 4-brane in this case.

    Astronomers Find Black Holes Do Not Absorb Dark Matter | Universe Today

  • "The term universe in its complete physical sense applies to all matter in existence."

    Wild Dreams of Reality, 5

  • The word universe literally means everything that exists.

    George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt

  • The word universe literally means everything that exists.

    George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt

  • The word universe literally means everything that exists.

    George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt

  • The word universe literally means everything that exists.

    George’s Cosmic Treasure Hunt

  • Since the universe is virtually transparent to radiation of these wavelengths, nothing would really have happened to it: the radiation would expand in universe at the same rate as the universe is expanding.

    Press Release: The 1978 Nobel Prize in Physics

  • When we began to realize that there were other such vast aggregations of stars, we called them "island universes," but this was an obvious misnomer; since the word universe means everything there is, it can hardly have a plural.

    Yahoo! News: Business - Opinion

  • Now Hoyle may have been wrong about the steady state theory – the very term "big bang" as used to describe the beginning of the universe is his own dismissive phrase for what he regarded as a poor alternative theory – but he was no fool otherwise, and it was only his own argumentative and bloody-minded character, it is said, that prevented him from winning the Nobel prize.

    The Black Cloud by Fred Hoyle – review

Comments

Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • "In answer to the question of why it happened, I offer the modest proposal that our Universe is simply one of those things which happen from time to time."

    --Edward P. Tryon

    September 26, 2007

  • Kent Hovind once claimed that this word means "single spoken sentence" as "proof" of a Biblical creation. I guess after mangling all known fields of science, he decided to tackle etymology.

    January 4, 2009

  • There is this book about how English is really based on Biblical Hebrew starting in the garden of Eden, The Word: The Dictionary That Reveals The Hebrew Source of English (Paperback). It might interest some of us here. As far as I can tell without having read it, it is complete crap.

    January 7, 2009

  • universe is a mystery

    February 9, 2010

  • "My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all."

    -Stephen Hawking

    December 6, 2010