The noun world usually refers to the earth, including both the planet itself and the organisms that live on it. If you say, "I want to get out and see the world," you want to go everywhere and see everything.

World can also mean someone's individual experiences — your world changed when you got a cat — or one particular region or group, like an actor famous throughout the Spanish-speaking world. While today you can use the words world and earth interchangeably, world originally meant just human experience; the Old English wer, or man, plus ald, or age, together formed weralt: the age of man.

Definitions of world

n the 3rd planet from the sun; the planet we live on

“he sailed around the world
Earth, earth, globe
Example of:
terrestrial planet
a planet having a compact rocky surface like the Earth's; the four innermost planets in the solar system

n everything that exists anywhere

cosmos, creation, existence, macrocosm, universe
closed universe
(cosmology) a universe that is spatially closed and in which there is sufficient matter to halt the expansion that began with the big bang; the visible matter is only 10 percent of the matter required for closure but there may be large amounts of dark matter
natural order
the physical universe considered as an orderly system subject to natural (not human or supernatural) laws
the natural physical world including plants and animals and landscapes etc.
Type of:
natural object
an object occurring naturally; not made by man

n a part of the earth that can be considered separately

“the outdoor world
“the world of insects”
Type of:
part, piece
a portion of a natural object

n the concerns of this life as distinguished from heaven and the afterlife

“they consider the church to be independent of the world
earth, earthly concern, worldly concern
Type of:
something that interests you because it is important or affects you

n all of the living human inhabitants of the earth

“all the world loves a lover”
human beings, human race, humanity, humankind, humans, man, mankind
Type of:
group, grouping
any number of entities (members) considered as a unit
homo, human, human being, man
any living or extinct member of the family Hominidae characterized by superior intelligence, articulate speech, and erect carriage

n people in general considered as a whole

populace, public
the segment of the public that is easily influenced by mass media (chiefly British)
Type of:
(plural) any group of human beings (men or women or children) collectively

n people in general; especially a distinctive group of people with some shared interest

“the Western world
academe, academia
the academic world
Grub Street
the world of literary hacks
Type of:
class, social class, socio-economic class, stratum
people having the same social, economic, or educational status

n all of your experiences that determine how things appear to you

“his world was shattered”
“we live in different worlds
real life, real world
the practical world as opposed to the academic world
Type of:
the content of direct observation or participation in an event

adj involving the entire earth; not limited or provincial in scope

“a world crisis”
global, planetary, world-wide, worldwide
concerning or belonging to all or at least two or more nations

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