uni·​verse | \ ˈyü-nə-ˌvərs How to pronounce universe (audio) \

Definition of universe

1 : the whole body of things and phenomena observed or postulated : cosmos: such as
a : a systematic whole held to arise by and persist through the direct intervention of divine power
b : the world of human experience
c(1) : the entire celestial cosmos
(3) : an aggregate of stars comparable to the Milky Way galaxy
2 : a distinct field or province of thought or reality that forms a closed system or self-inclusive and independent organization
4 : a set that contains all elements relevant to a particular discussion or problem
5 : a great number or quantity a large enough universe of stocks … to choose from— G. B. Clairmont

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Examples of universe in a Sentence

How many stars are there in the universe? It means more to me than anything else in the entire universe. She is convinced that parallel universes exist. He creates his own universe in his novels. New York City is the center of the publishing universe.
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Recent Examples on the Web The revival series will consist of 10 episodes set in a new location to the Dexter universe: Iron Lake, New York, a fictional town. Madison Durham, USA TODAY, "Here's how to watch the new season of Dexter when it comes out," 23 Mar. 2021 Ozick’s own relationship to the universe is a fiercely historical and literary one. Cathleen Schine, The New York Review of Books, "The Struggle and the Scramble," 16 Mar. 2021 There was even a computer game called Mullet Hunter where the cursor became an electric razor and users scored points cutting off mullets, thereby restoring order to the universe. René A. Guzman, San Antonio Express-News, "San Antonians are embracing the COVID mullet trend. Yep, mullets are back. And they're spectacular.," 15 Mar. 2021 But there is no reason to apply that thinking to the universe as a whole. Andrew Crumey, WSJ, "‘Probable Impossibilities’ Review: An Infinitely Curious Mind," 12 Mar. 2021 Sources told the Hollywood Reporter that the story will introduce a Black Superman to the DC film universe. David Z. Morris, Fortune, "The Fortune 500 has a new Black CEO," 26 Feb. 2021 Hayden Christensen is returning to the Star Wars universe. James Hibberd, EW.com, "Hayden Christensen to play Darth Vader in new Obi-Wan Kenobi series," 10 Dec. 2020 But that adulation hasn’t automatically extended to the SBTB universe’s expansion efforts. Washington Post, "The new ‘Saved by the Bell’ has a big advantage over other reboots: It’s really good," 23 Nov. 2020 As noted, the sundry ties to the actual universe include vocal cameos by Kelly Marie Tran, Billy Dee Williams and Anthony Daniels, but the nostalgia goes a whole lot deeper than that. Brian Lowry, CNN, "'Lego Star Wars Holiday Special' takes a nostalgic tour of 'Star Wars' history," 16 Nov. 2020

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

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First Known Use of universe

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for universe

Middle English, from Latin universum, from neuter of universus entire, whole, from uni- + versus turned toward, from past participle of vertere to turn — more at worth

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Time Traveler for universe

Time Traveler

The first known use of universe was in 1589

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Statistics for universe

Last Updated

31 Mar 2021

Cite this Entry

“Universe.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/universe. Accessed 12 Apr. 2021.

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More Definitions for universe



English Language Learners Definition of universe

: all of space and everything in it including stars, planets, galaxies, etc.
: an area of space or a world that is similar to but separate from the one that we live in
: the people, places, experiences, etc., that are associated with a particular person, place, or thing


uni·​verse | \ ˈyü-nə-ˌvərs How to pronounce universe (audio) \

Kids Definition of universe

: all created things including the earth and heavenly bodies viewed as making up one system

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Comments on universe

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