from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition
- n. Ecology The condition of being stunted or dwarfed, as in certain climates.
- n. See dwarfism.
from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License
- n. Unusually small size, as a result of a developmental abnormality
from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English
- n. The condition of being abnormally small in stature; dwarfism; dwarfishness; -- opposed to
from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia
- n. Aberration from normal form by decrease in size; the character or quality of being dwarfed or pygmy; dwarfishness: opposed to gigantism.
from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.
- n. a genetic abnormality resulting in short stature
Atrophy is partial and special in its operation, nanism is general.
Again, atrophy is to be separated from that general diminution in the size of the whole plant or of distinct parts of that plant which is comprised under the term "nanism."
A characteristic phenomenon is nanism: in Sardinia there are some species that are smaller than those living outside the Island, such as the small horses on the Giara plateau, or Sardinian deer, smaller than their European "cousins".