What does miniature mean?

Definitions for miniature
ˈmɪn i ə tʃər, -ˌtʃʊər, ˈmɪn ə tʃərminia·ture

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word miniature.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. miniature, illuminationnoun

    painting or drawing included in a book (especially in illuminated medieval manuscripts)

  2. miniature, toyadjective

    a copy that reproduces a person or thing in greatly reduced size

  3. miniatureadjective

    being on a very small scale

    "a miniature camera"


  1. miniaturenoun

    A small version of something; a model of reduced scale.

    There was a miniature of a whaling ship in a glass bottle over the mantlepiece.

  2. miniaturenoun

    A small, highly detailed painting, a portrait miniature.

  3. miniaturenoun

    The art of painting such highly detailed miniature works.

  4. miniaturenoun

    An illustration in an illuminated manuscript.

  5. miniaturenoun

    A musical composition which is short in duration.

    Sacha composed a miniature for strings as a final project at the conservatory.

  6. miniaturenoun

    A token in a game representing a unit or character.

    Jack had dozens of miniatures of Napoleanic footsoldiers painted in detailed period regalia for his wargames.

  7. miniatureadjective

    Smaller than normal.

    I find miniature dogs annoying; they seem to yap more than full-size dogs.

  8. Etymology: From the miniatura (manuscript illumination), from miniare (to illuminate), from the miniāre (to colour red), from minium (red lead).

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Miniaturenoun

    Etymology: miniature, French.

    The water, with twenty bubbles, not content to have the picture of their face in large, would in each of these bubbles set forth the miniature of them. Philip Sidney, b. ii.

    If the ladies should once take a liking to such a diminutive race, we should see mankind epitomized, and the whole species in miniature: in order to keep our posterity from dwindling, we have instituted a tall club. Joseph Addison, Guard.

    The hidden ways
    Of nature would’st thou know? how first she frames
    All things in miniature? thy specular orb
    Apply to well dissected kernels: lo!
    Strange forms arise, in each a little plant
    Unfolds its boughs: observe the slender threads
    Of first beginning trees, their roots, their leaves,
    In narrow seeds describ’d. Philips.

    Here shall the pencil bid its colours flow,
    And make a miniature creation grow. John Gay.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Miniature

    originally, a painting in colors such as those in mediaeval manuscripts; in modern times, any very small painting, especially a portrait

  2. Miniature

    greatly diminished size or form; reduced scale

  3. Miniature

    lettering in red; rubric distinction

  4. Miniature

    a particular feature or trait

  5. Miniatureadjective

    being on a small; much reduced from the reality; as, a miniature copy

  6. Miniatureverb

    to represent or depict in a small compass, or on a small scale

  7. Etymology: [It. miniatura, fr. L. miniare. See Miniate, v.,Minium.]


  1. Miniature

    The word miniature, derived from the Latin minium, red lead, is a picture in an ancient or medieval illuminated manuscript; the simple decoration of the early codices having been miniated or delineated with that pigment. The generally small scale of the medieval pictures has led secondly to an etymological confusion of the term with minuteness and to its application to small paintings especially portrait miniatures, which did however grow from the same tradition and at least initially use similar techniques. Apart from the Western and Byzantine traditions, there is another group of Asian traditions, which is generally more illustrative in nature, and from origins in manuscript book decoration also developed into single-sheet small paintings to be kept in albums, which are also called miniatures, as the Western equivalents in watercolor and other mediums are not. These include Persian miniatures, and their Mughal, Ottoman and other Indian offshoots.

Chambers 20th Century Dictionary

  1. Miniature

    min′i-a-tūr, or min′i-tūr, n. a painting on a very small scale, on ivory, vellum, or thick paper: a small or reduced copy of anything.—adj. on a small scale: minute.—v.t. to represent on a small scale.—n. Min′iaturist, one who paints miniatures. [It. miniaturaminiare, to write with red lead—L. minium, vermilion.]

Etymology and Origins

  1. Miniature

    So called because this early species of hand-painted portraiture originated in the head of the Madonna or of a saint that formed the initial letter of the beautifully illuminated rubrics produced by the monks styled the “Miniatori,” because their paints were made out of minium, or red lead.

Matched Categories

How to pronounce miniature?

How to say miniature in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of miniature in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of miniature in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of miniature in a Sentence

  1. Banani Ray:

    No one and nothing outside of you can give you salvation, or free you from the misery. You have to light your own lamp. You have to know the miniature universe that you yourself are.

  2. Melanie Bailey:

    We would like to get funding to make this technology more portable using miniature mass spectrometers. We are also working on a quantitative method.

  3. Chris Lee:

    If you create miniature goals for yourself, you have something to look forward to when you exercise, so it's not just another boring workout, think of it as unlocking a new game level or superpower. Some simple examples are nailing a handstand, push-up or pull-up.

  4. David Long:

    They show miniature flares across the surface of the Sun, which look like campfires that are millions of times smaller than the solar flares that we see from Earth, dotted across the surface, these small flares might play an important role in a mysterious phenomenon called coronal heating, whereby the Sun's outer layer, or corona, is more than 200 - 500 times hotter than the layers below.

  5. Matt Groening:

    Love is a perky elf dancing a merry little jig, then suddenly he turns on you with a miniature machine gun.

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Translations for miniature

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"miniature." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 27 Mar. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/miniature>.

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