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From The Collaborative International Dictionary of English v.0.48:
Organism \Or"gan*ism\, n. [Cf. F. organisme.] 1. Organic structure; organization. "The advantageous organism of the eye." --Grew. [1913 Webster] 2. (Biol.) An organized being; a living body, either vegetable or animal, composed of different organs or parts with functions which are separate, but mutually dependent, and essential to the life of the individual. [1913 Webster] Note: Some of the lower forms of life are so simple in structure as to be without organs, but are still called organisms, since they have different parts analogous in functions to the organs of higher plants and animals. [1913 Webster] organismal