an·​i·​mal·​cule | \ ˌa-nə-ˈmal-(ˌ)kyü(ə)l How to pronounce animalcule (audio) \
variants: or less commonly animalculum \ ˌa-​nə-​ˈmal-​kyə-​ləm How to pronounce animalculum (audio) \
plural animalcules also animalcula\ ˌa-​nə-​ˈmal-​kyə-​lə How to pronounce animalcula (audio) \

Definition of animalcule

: a minute usually microscopic organism

Examples of animalcule in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Van Leeuwenhoek estimated, correctly, that there were more animalcules swimming and creeping around in his mouth than there were people living in the Netherlands. Jonathan Weiner, New York Times, "Book Review Newsletter," 15 Aug. 2016

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'animalcule.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of animalcule

1662, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for animalcule

New Latin animalculum, diminutive of Latin animal

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Time Traveler for animalcule

Time Traveler

The first known use of animalcule was in 1662

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Statistics for animalcule

Cite this Entry

“Animalcule.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Dec. 2020.

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More Definitions for animalcule


an·​i·​mal·​cule | \ ˌan-ə-ˈmal-(ˌ)kyü(ə)l How to pronounce animalcule (audio) \
variants: also animalculum \ -​ˈmal-​kyə-​ləm How to pronounce animalculum (audio) \
plural animalcules also animalcula\ -​kyə-​lə How to pronounce animalcula (audio) \

Medical Definition of animalcule

: a minute usually microscopic organism

More from Merriam-Webster on animalcule

Nglish: Translation of animalcule for Spanish Speakers Encyclopedia article about animalcule

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