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Pythagoras is said to have been the first philosopher to apply the term "cosmos" (Greek κόσμος) to the Universe, perhaps referring to the starry firmament. The Ancient Greek natural philosopher Archimedes, in his essay "The Sand Reckoner," estimated the diameter of the cosmos to be equivalent in stadia to what we call two light years.
The word derives from the Greek term κόσμος (kosmos), literally meaning "well-ordered" or "ornament" and metaphorically "world," and is antithetical to the concept of chaos in it's ugly state. Today, the word is generally used as a synonym of the Latin loanword "Universe" (considered in its beautifully-ordered aspect). The word cosmetics originates from the same root. In many Slavic languages such as Russian, Polish, Bulgarian, and Serbian, the word kosmos (космос) also means "outer space."
Cosmology is the study of the cosmos in several of the above meanings, depending on context. All cosmologies have in common an attempt to understand the implicit order and beauty within the whole of being. In this way, most religions and philosophical systems have a cosmology.
In physical cosmology, the term cosmos is often used in a technical way, referring to a particular spacetime continuum within the (postulated) multiverse. Our particular cosmos, the observable universe, is generally capitalized as the Cosmos.
In theology, the term can be used to denote the created Universe, not including the creator. In Christian theology, the word is also used synonymously with aion to refer to "worldly life" or "this world" as opposed to the afterlife or World to Come. The cosmos as originated by Pythagoras is parallel to the Zoroastrian term aša, the concept of a divine arrangement, or divinely fashioned creation.
- Cosmic Logos
- Cosmic View
- Cosmic Zoom
- Russian cosmism
- Cosmos: A Personal Voyage (Carl Sagan's television documentary series)
- Macrocosm and microcosm
- Megaverse (disambiguation)
- Omega point (de Chardin)
- Omega point (Tipler)
- Omniverse (disambiguation)
- Cosmos – an Illustrated Dimensional Journey from microcosmos to macrocosmos – from Digital Nature Agency
- JPL Spitzer telescope photos of macrocosmos
- Macrocosm and Microcosm, in Dictionary of the History of Ideas
- Encyclopedia of Cosmos This is in Japanese.
- Cosmos(Russian) Illustrated Encyclopedia of Cosmos and Cosmic Law
- Greene, B. (1999). The Elegant Universe: Superstrings, Hidden Dimensions, and the Quest for the Ultimate Theory. W.W. Norton, New York
- Hawking, S. W. (2001). The Universe in a Nutshell. Bantam Book.
- Yulsman, T. (2003). Origins: The Quest for our Cosmic Roots. Institute of Physics Publishing, London.