island universe

noun

: a galaxy other than the Milky Way

Examples of island universe in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web The galaxy spanning Edwin Hubble’s glass plates will be an island universe no more. WIRED, 12 Nov. 2023 Kant was right: such nebulae truly were island universes, and the Milky Way was merely one among many. Phil Plait, Scientific American, 4 Aug. 2023 That’s interesting work suggesting that island universes, as galaxies were originally called, may not be so independent after all. The Physics Arxiv Blog, Discover Magazine, 23 June 2023 The clusters will survive, but each one will become an island universe, effectively alone in a vast expanse of nothingness. Popular Mechanics, 6 June 2023 Kant coined the term island universe to describe a galaxy. Katherine Kornei, Discover Magazine, 1 Oct. 2014 This picture -- one of four peering at this gigantic island universe -- is looking into the galaxy's halo, the cloud of stars surrounding the main disk. Phil Plait, Discover Magazine, 26 July 2011 This little island universe holds far fewer stars than your average galaxy. Jake Parks, Discover Magazine, 5 Sep. 2019 Filled to the brim with hundreds of billions of stars, these island universes often seem like the most prominent occupants of space’s vast emptiness. Scientific American, 30 Aug. 2019 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'island universe.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1867, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of island universe was in 1867

Dictionary Entries Near island universe

Cite this Entry

“Island universe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/island%20universe. Accessed 10 Dec. 2023.

Kids Definition

island universe

noun
: a galaxy other than the Milky Way
Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!