child·​birth | \ ˈchī(-ə)l(d)-ˌbərth \

Definition of childbirth 

: the act or process of giving birth to a baby : parturition

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Examples of childbirth in a Sentence

women who choose to undergo childbirth without the use of anesthetics and other drugs

Recent Examples on the Web

No one is immune to the messy realities of childbirth. Kayleigh Roberts, Marie Claire, "Keira Knightley Just Criticized Kate Middleton for Hiding the Reality of Childbirth," 6 Oct. 2018 For women of color, pregnancy and childbirth are often a matter of life and death. Abby Gardner, Glamour, "Black Women Are Dying During Childbirth. Sen. Kamala Harris Is Working to Change That.," 23 Aug. 2018 Knightley's essay is sure to polarize opinion, especially as not everyone experiences childbirth and pregnancy in the same way. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Keira Knightley Criticizes Kate Middleton’s Perfect Post-Baby Body Appearance," 6 Oct. 2018 And the number-one cause of death there is bleed outs after childbirth or other things. Katherine Lagrave, Condé Nast Traveler, "Innovators: Biometrics Believer Caryn Seidman-Becker, CEO of Clear, on Never Needing ID Again," 11 Sep. 2018 Women’s earnings drop significantly after childbirth, while men’s don’t. Rebecca Greenfield, The Seattle Times, "Breast pumping at work makes the gender pay gap worse," 15 Oct. 2018 The incidence of women dying before, during or shortly after childbirth in the District is more than twice the national average, according to Allen, the bill’s sponsor. Fenit Nirappil, Washington Post, "D.C. Council sends public campaign finance bill to Bowser, setting up showdown," 6 Feb. 2018 Gonzalès died in childbirth at the age of just 34; only about 120 paintings and pastels are attributed to her. Peter Saenger, WSJ, "The Triumph of Women Artists," 21 Nov. 2018 For example, in an impoverished country with a high risk of infectious disease and death in childbirth, the few wealthy citizens can avoid these risks through expensive healthcare. Cathleen O'grady, Ars Technica, "Genetics play less of a role in lifespan than we thought," 8 Nov. 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'childbirth.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of childbirth

15th century, in the meaning defined above

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Last Updated

11 Jan 2019

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Time Traveler for childbirth

The first known use of childbirth was in the 15th century

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More Definitions for childbirth



English Language Learners Definition of childbirth

: the act or process of giving birth to children


child·​birth | \ ˈchīld-ˌbərth \

Kids Definition of childbirth

: the act or process of giving birth to a child


child·​birth | \ ˈchīl(d)-ˌbərth \

Medical Definition of childbirth 

: the act or process of giving birth to a baby : parturition

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