fer·til·i·ty | \(ˌ)fər-ˈti-lə-tē \

Definition of fertility 

1 : the quality or state of being fertile

2 : the birthrate of a population

Examples of fertility in a Sentence

She studied the effects of pollution on the fertility of the local fish population. The doctor ordered a test of his fertility. The area is known for its soil fertility. the fertility of his imagination
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Recent Examples on the Web

The Brussels Center is one of Europe's largest fertility clinics. Ariana Eunjung Cha, Washington Post, "Do ‘social’ egg freezers use their eggs? Here are new numbers from a large fertility center.," 6 July 2018 The subjects in this particular study, which has not yet been published, came from seven different fertility clinics. Heather Murphy, New York Times, "Lots of Successful Women Are Freezing Their Eggs. But It May Not Be About Their Careers.," 3 July 2018 This means that fertility doctors won’t have to harvest your eggs, much less clone you. William Saletan, WSJ, "‘She Has Her Mother’s Laugh’ Review: Biology’s Strange New World," 28 June 2018 Last fall fertility doctor Geeta Nargund and her son, Praful, opened ABC IVF, a low-cost clinic, in London. Anna Louie Sussman, Bloomberg.com, "Falling Birthrates Call for More Accessible Fertility Treatment," 18 June 2018 Nationwide, the overall fertility rate declined, from 1.82 children per woman in 2016 to 1.76 children per woman in 2017. Steve Rubenstein, San Francisco Chronicle, "California birthrate plunges to lowest level in a century," 17 May 2018 Abnormal embryos — which appear to have the wrong number of chromosomes — are almost universally considered nonviable and discarded by other fertility doctors. Ariana Eunjung Cha, Washington Post, "This fertility doctor is pushing the boundaries of human reproduction, with little regulation," 14 May 2018 My fertility doctor optimistically informed me that most patients meet their guy within six months of freezing their eggs, and urged me to try online dating. Josh Cootner, latimes.com, "Our first date ended up in a case of 'he said, she said'," 19 Jan. 2018 The ability to be in control of their own fertility and reproduction gave women a profound new autonomy over their own bodies, their health, and their sexuality. Carolyn Todd, Allure, "The History and Evolution of Birth Control in America," 12 July 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for fertility

Last Updated

31 Aug 2018

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

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More Definitions for fertility



English Language Learners Definition of fertility

: the ability to produce young

: the ability to support the growth of many plants

: the ability to produce many ideas


fer·til·i·ty | \ˌfər-ˈti-lə-tē \

Kids Definition of fertility

: the condition of being fertile soil fertility


fer·til·i·ty | \(ˌ)fər-ˈtil-ət-ē \
plural fertilities

Medical Definition of fertility 

1 : the quality or state of being fertile

2 : the birthrate of a population — compare mortality sense 2b

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Comments on fertility

What made you want to look up fertility? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


exaggeratedly or childishly emotional

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