congenital

adjective
con·​gen·​i·​tal | \ kən-ˈje-nə-tᵊl How to pronounce congenital (audio) , kän-\

Definition of congenital

1a : existing at or dating from birth congenital deafness
b : constituting an essential characteristic : inherent congenital fear of snakes
c : acquired during development in the uterus and not through heredity congenital syphilis
2 : being such by nature a congenital liar

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Other Words from congenital

congenitally \ kən-​ˈje-​nə-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce congenitally (audio) , kän-​ \ adverb

Synonyms & Antonyms for congenital

Synonyms

born, natural

Antonyms

nonnatural

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Choose the Right Synonym for congenital

innate, inborn, inbred, congenital, hereditary mean not acquired after birth. innate applies to qualities or characteristics that are part of one's inner essential nature. an innate sense of fair play inborn suggests a quality or tendency either actually present at birth or so marked and deep-seated as to seem so. her inborn love of nature inbred suggests something either acquired from parents by heredity or so deeply rooted and ingrained as to seem acquired in that way. inbred political loyalties congenital and hereditary refer to what is acquired before or at birth, the former to things acquired during fetal development and the latter to things transmitted from one's ancestors. a congenital heart murmur eye color is hereditary

Examples of congenital in a Sentence

The irregularity in my backbone is probably congenital. a congenital liar who couldn't speak the truth if his life depended on it

Recent Examples on the Web

Like how Comey calls Trump a congenital liar, an unethical leader and a president who is obsessed with defending himself from the salacious and unverified prostitute allegations, reports The Post's Philip Rucker. Amber Phillips, Washington Post, "How James Comey transformed from Trump’s FBI director to Trump’s chief antagonist," 16 Apr. 2018 Comey describes Trump as a congenital liar and unethical leader, devoid of human emotion and driven by personal ego. Philip Rucker, Anchorage Daily News, "Comey’s memoir: Trump fixates on proving lewd dossier allegations false," 13 Apr. 2018 Throughout the book, Comey writes that Trump showed all the hallmarks of a congenital liar. NBC News, "Comey, in new book, paints Trump as a liar divorced from reality," 13 Apr. 2018 Comey describes Trump as a congenital liar and unethical leader, devoid of human emotion and driven by personal ego. Philip Rucker, chicagotribune.com, "James Comey's memoir: Trump fixates on proving lewd dossier allegations false," 12 Apr. 2018 This snaking twist of the spine can be congenital, the result of an underlying neurological condition or even a consequence of an injury, but the most prevalent type is idiopathic—meaning doctors have no idea what causes it. Lauren Depino, Glamour, "My Scoliosis Caused Me Pain and Shame—Then It Helped Me Learn to Find Alignment," 10 Apr. 2019 According to the CURE International blog, Aldrin’s condition was identified as congenital knee dislocation, which caused his knees to bed the wrong way. Alexandria Hein, Fox News, "Boy with deformed legs undergoes life-changing surgery at Tebow CURE Hospital," 27 July 2018 But with congenital radioulnar synostosis, a bony bridge forms between the two instead, connecting them together due to underdevelopment of the proximal joint, which connects the radius and ulna bones at the elbow. Sarah Valenzuela, SELF, "My Congenital Disorder Confuses a Lot of Trainers, So I Have to Be My Own Fitness Expert," 9 Nov. 2018 Common risk factors include congenital heart defects, sickle-cell disease, clotting, or immune disorders; Hudson had none of those. Kerry Cromwell, Good Housekeeping, "My Little Boy Was Just 7 Years Old When He Had a Catastrophic Stroke," 26 July 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'congenital.' 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 congenital

1796, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for congenital

Latin congenitus, from com- + genitus, past participle of gignere to bring forth — more at kin

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Statistics for congenital

Last Updated

16 May 2019

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Time Traveler for congenital

The first known use of congenital was in 1796

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More Definitions for congenital

congenital

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of congenital

: existing since birth
informal : naturally having a specified character

congenital

adjective
con·​gen·​i·​tal | \ kän-ˈjen-ə-tᵊl How to pronounce congenital (audio) \

Medical Definition of congenital

1 : existing at or dating from birth congenital deafness
2 : acquired during development in the uterus and not through heredity congenital syphilis — compare acquired sense 1, familial, hereditary

Other Words from congenital

congenitally \ -​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce congenitally (audio) \ adverb

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