Skip to definition.
Get the FREE one-click dictionary software for Windows or the iPhone/iPad and Android apps

Noun: meiosis (meioses)  mI'ow-sis
  1. (genetics) cell division that produces reproductive cells in sexually reproducing organisms; the nucleus divides into four nuclei each containing half the chromosome number (leading to gametes in animals and spores in plants)
    - miosis, reduction division
  2. Understatement for rhetorical effect (especially when expressing an affirmative by negating its contrary)
    "saying 'I was not a little upset' when you mean 'I was very upset' is an example of meiosis";
    - litotes

Derived forms: meioses

Type of: cell division, cellular division, rhetorical device, understatement

Encyclopedia: Meiosis