The plural of sheep is sheep. This is 'fractal-like' definition contained within our vocabulary. Here is a photoshopped visual of that same fractal concept.
A fractal is an object or quantity that displays 'self-similarity'. When you look closer at a single subject you see that its made up of plurals of the same configuration.
In a somewhat technical sense this happens on all scales and on all levels of our existence. The object need not exhibit exactly the same structure at any level of magnification, but the same "type" of structures must appear on all scales.
Basically, a fractal is any pattern that reveals greater complexity as it is enlarged. Thus, fractals graphically portray the notion of 'worlds within worlds' which has obsessed Western culture from its tenth-century beginnings.
Tomorrow let's look at dry stone walls as exhibiting some of these obvious fractal properties.