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from Ancient Greek μακρός (makrós, long) + κεφαλή (kephalḗ, head).


macrocephalic (comparative more macrocephalic, superlative most macrocephalic)

  1. Having an abnormally large or elongated head.
    • 1873, John Wells Foster, Pre-Historic Races of the United States, Chicago: S.C. Griggs & Co., Chapter 9, p. 327,[1]
      In 1849, M. Rathke stated that artificially-formed skulls had been found near Kertch, in the Crimea, and called attention to certain passages in the works of Hippocrates and Strabo, overlooked by medical writers, in which these authors speak of the practice of modifying the shape of the head by means of bandages, as being in use among the macrocephalic (long-headed) Scythians.
    • 1937, H. G. Wells, Star Begotten, Chapter 6, § 2,[2]
      This intimation, breaking through his resistances, evoked first the dread of an abnormal child, prematurely wise, macrocephalic, with dreadful tentacular hands.... So his essential humanity presented the thing.
    • 1979, Philip Roth, The Ghost Writer, New York: Farrar, Straus & Giroux, Part I,
      [] that I couldn’t return her gaze directly had also to do with this unharmonious relation between body and skull, and its implication, to me, of some early misfortune, of something vital lost or beaten down, and, by way of compensation, something vastly overdone. I thought of a trapped chick that could not get more than its beaked skull out of the encircling shell. I thought of those macrocephalic boulders the Easter Island heads.
    • 2003, Mary Jane West-Eberhard, Developmental Plasticity and Evolution, Oxford University Press, Part II, Chapter 11, p. 228,[3]
      The males of P. portalis [bees] are strikingly dimorphic: fewer than 50% of them are “normal” winged males that mate with females at flowers, and the remainder are large, flightless, macrocephalic fighters that remain in the natal nest, where they fight to the death with competitors.
    • 2010, Susan Klugman and Susan J. Gross, “Ashkenazi Jewish Screening in the Twenty-first Century,” in Anthony R. Gregg and Joe Leigh Simpson (eds.), Genetic Screening and Counseling, an issue of Obstetrics and Gynecology Clinics of North America, March 2010, Volume 37, No. 1, p. 40,[4]
      TSD is a neurodegenerative disorder that presents in the first year of life and is fatal in early childhood. [] Infants are classically macrocephalic because of storage material accumulation in the brain and have the characteristic cherry red spot on their macula.
  2. (geography) Characterized by a disproportionate concentration of population and activities in a single centre, to the detriment of other areas.
    • 2003, Michael Bess, The Light-Green Society: Ecology and Technological Modernity in France, 1960-2000, University of Chicago Press, Part I, Chapter 2, p. 49,[5]
      In 1947, the geographer Jean-François Gravier published a book that became an instant sensation: Paris et le désert français. Gravier argued that France was becoming a seriously deformed nation, a macrocephalic invalid: Paris, the megalopolis, was sucking all the lifeblood from the provinces, leading to a dangerous imbalance between center and periphery.
    • 2007, R. Kalra, “High Technology and Urban Development in Bangalore, India,” in Jay D. Gatrell and Neil Reid (eds.), Enterprising Worlds: A Geographic Perspective on Economics, Environments & Ethics, Dordrecht: Springer, p. 74,[6]
      Several developing countries are characterized by rapid urbanization, macrocephalic urban systems, high urban densities and various socio economic and environmental problems.

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