/mi ran"deuh/; also for 1, 4, Sp. /mee rddahn"dah/, n.
1. Francisco de /frddahn sees"kaw dhe/, 1750-1816, Venezuelan revolutionist and patriot.
2. Astron. a moon of the planet Uranus.
3. daughter of Prospero in Shakespeare's The Tempest.
4. a female given name: from a Latin word meaning "to be admired."
5. Law. of, pertaining to, or being upheld by the Supreme Court ruling (Miranda v. Arizona, 1966) requiring law-enforcement officers to warn a person who has been taken into custody of his or her rights to remain silent and to have legal counsel.

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(as used in expressions)
Miranda Carmen
Maria do Carmo Miranda da Cunha
Miranda Francisco de

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 innermost and smallest of the five major moons of Uranus and, topographically, the most varied of the group. It was discovered in telescopic photographs of the Uranian system in 1948 by the Dutch American astronomer Gerard P. Kuiper (Kuiper, Gerard Peter), who named it after a character in William Shakespeare's play The Tempest.

      Miranda revolves around Uranus once every 1.413 days in a nearly circular orbit at a mean distance of 129,800 km (80,654 miles) from the centre of the planet. Slightly nonspherical in shape, it has a mean diameter of about 470 km (290 miles). Miranda's density of 1.2 grams per cubic cm, which is somewhat less than those of the other major Uranian moons, suggests that it has a greater proportion of water ice to rocky material and other ices than these other bodies.

      Because of the trajectory that the U.S. Voyager 2 spacecraft followed in its flyby of Uranus in 1986 (in order for it to be redirected to Neptune), the probe had the opportunity to study Miranda more closely than any other Uranian moon. Photographs from Voyager revealed that Miranda's surface is a bizarre patchwork of winding valleys, parallel grooves, fault scarps, and cratered highlands. Such topographic features were a surprise because the moon was thought too small—being only a third the diameter of its much less topographically diverse siblings Titania and Oberon—to have experienced the extensive tectonic activity needed to fashion this varied terrain. It remains to be determined whether this activity resulted from extrinsic forces, such as one or more shattering collisions in the moon's early history, or intrinsic ones, such as eruptions from its interior caused by past tidal heating (as now occurs on Jupiter's volcanically active moon Io).

Andrew P. Ingersoll

      estado (state), northern Venezuela, bounded on the northeast by the Caribbean Sea, by the Venezuelan states of Guárico on the south and Aragua on the west, and by the Distrito Federal on the north. The mountainous northern and southern parts of the territory of 3,070 square miles (7,950 square km) are separated by the Tuy River, which flows eastward to the Caribbean. Miranda ranks high among Venezuelan states in agricultural and pastoral production, and government irrigation projects have resulted in the expansion of its large-scale farming and in the diversification of its agriculture. Almost half of the nation's cacao is grown around the Barlovento region of Miranda and neighbouring Anzoátegui, in the Tuy valley. Coffee plantations cover the higher elevations; sugarcane and citrus trees thrive on the valley floor. The state also produces bananas, corn (maize), peanuts (groundnuts), cassava, and coconuts. Miranda has a high rural population density, and the city of Caracas has expanded into neighbouring parts of northwestern Miranda. The highway network is extensive; Los Teques, the state capital and major industrial centre, lies on the Pan-American Highway. Pop. (2007 est.) 2,857,943.

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Universalium. 2010.

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