1. an act or instance of being born: the day of his birth.
  2. the act or process of bearing or bringing forth offspring; childbirth; parturition: a difficult birth.
  3. lineage; extraction; descent: of Grecian birth.
  4. high or noble lineage: to be foolishly vain about one’s birth.
  5. natural heritage: a musician by birth.
  6. any coming into existence; origin; beginning: the birth of Protestantism; the birth of an idea.
  7. Archaic. something that is born.

verb (used with object) Chiefly South Midland and Southern U.S.

  1. to give birth to.
  2. to assist in giving birth; act as midwife for.
  1. give birth to,
    1. to bear (a child).
    2. to initiate; originate: Her hobby gave birth to a successful business.


  1. the process of bearing young; parturition; childbirthRelated adjective: natal
  2. the act or fact of being born; nativity
  3. the coming into existence of something; origin
  4. ancestry; lineageof high birth
  5. noble ancestrya man of birth
  6. natural or inherited talentan artist by birth
  7. archaic the offspring or young born at a particular time or of a particular mother
  8. give birth
    1. to bear (offspring)
    2. to produce, originate, or create (an idea, plan, etc)

verb (tr) rare

  1. to bear or bring forth (a child)

early 13c., from a Scandinavian source, cf. Old Norse *byrðr (replacing cognate Old English gebyrd “birth, descent, race; offspring; nature; fate”), from Proto-Germanic *gaburthis (cf. Old Frisian berd, Old Saxon giburd, Dutch geboorte, Old High German giburt, German geburt, Gothic gabaurþs), from PIE *bhrto past participle of root *bher- (1) “to carry; to bear children” (cf. Sanskrit bhrtih “a bringing, maintenance,” Latin fors, genitive fortis “chance;” see bear (v.)). Suffix -th is for “process” (as in bath, death). Meaning “parentage, lineage, extraction” (revived from Old English) is from mid-13c. Birth control is from 1914; birth rate from 1859. Birth certificate is from 1842.


mid-13c., from birth (n.). Related: Birthed; birthing.


  1. The emergence and separation of offspring from the body of the mother.
  2. The act or process of bearing young; parturition.
  3. The circumstances or conditions relating to this event, as its time or location.
  4. The set of characteristics or circumstances received from one’s ancestors; inheritance.
  5. Origin; extraction.


  1. The emergence and separation of offspring from the body of its mother, seen in all mammals except monotremes.


  1. Present at birth, as a defect in a bodily structure.

see give birth to.

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