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The intestinal morphology of 7-week-old pigs was investigated by light (LM) and scanning electron microscopy (SEM). The piglets were fed either a semisynthetic or a cereal-based diet. The shapes of the intestinal villi and crypts of the duodenum, jejunum and ileum were examined. The villi were predominantly tongue-shaped. In the duodenum they were also ridged, branched and folded, and in the jejunum they were also leaf-like and ridged. At places with lymph follicles, the surface of the ileum was rugged with meandering fold-like villi. The crypts of the three segments of the small intestine were mainly coiled and sometimes branched. A novel morphometric evaluation method was introduced using the enlargement factors of each villus and crypt surface. The enlargement factor for the villus surface of the duodenum, jejunum and ileum was 3.13, 3.72 and 2.71, respectively. The factor for the crypt surface of the duodenum, jejunum and ileum was 9.07, 8.94 and 6.53, respectively. Furthermore, the relative proliferation rate and the epithelial renewal index were calculated for the first time. The relative proliferation rate of the duodenum, jejunum and ileum was 32.88, 34.78 and 50.77 proliferations per mm crypt perimeter, respectively. The diets consumed had an influence on the epithelial renewal index being higher for piglets fed the cereal-based diets.