noun, plural in·fan·cies.

  1. the state or period of being an infant; very early childhood, usually the period before being able to walk; babyhood.
  2. the corresponding period in the existence of anything; very early stage: Space science is in its infancy.
  3. infants collectively.
  4. Law. the period of life to the age of majority, 21 years at common law but now usually 18; minority; nonage.

noun plural -cies

  1. the state or period of being an infant; childhood
  2. an early stage of growth or development
  3. infants collectively
  4. the period of life prior to attaining legal majority (reached at 21 under common law, at 18 by statute); minority nonage

late 14c., from Anglo-French enfaunce and directly from Latin infantia “early childhood,” literally “inability to speak,” from infantem (see infant).


  1. The earliest period of childhood, especially before the ability to walk has been acquired.
  2. The state of being an infant.

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