noun uni·verse \ ˈyü-nə-ˌvərs \
Updated on: 9 Jan 2018

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
3 : population 4
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

Examples of universe in a Sentence

  1. How many stars are there in the universe?

  2. It means more to me than anything else in the entire universe.

  3. She is convinced that parallel universes exist.

  4. He creates his own universe in his novels.

  5. New York City is the center of the publishing universe.

Recent Examples of universe from the Web

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.

Origin and Etymology of 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

universe Synonyms

cosmos, creation, macrocosm, nature, world
Related Words
existence, reality
Near Antonyms
nothingness, void

UNIVERSE Defined for English Language Learners



Definition of universe for English Language Learners

  • the 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

UNIVERSE Defined for Kids


noun uni·verse \ ˈyü-nə-ˌvərs \

Definition of universe for Students

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

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to cause to suffer severely from hunger

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