ges·ta·tion | \je-ˈstā-shən \

Definition of gestation 

1 : the carrying of young in the uterus (see uterus sense 1) : pregnancy

2 : conception (see conception sense 3) and development especially in the mind

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Other Words from gestation

gestational \je-ˈstā-shnəl, -shə-nᵊl \ adjective

Synonyms for gestation



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Examples of gestation in a Sentence

the gestation of new ideas The book has been in gestation for a long time.

Recent Examples on the Web

About one percent of pregnancies in the U.S. will end in stillbirth (or a loss after 20 weeks gestation), according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and every year about 24,000 babies die within their first year of life. Kaelyn Forde, Glamour, "What Women Who Have Experienced Loss Want to Hear on Mother's Day," 10 May 2018 To better protect infants, doctors recommend pregnant women get the Tdap vaccine between 27 and 36 weeks gestation, Blumberg said. Molly Sullivan, sacbee, "A whooping cough 'epidemic ' is looming. Here's how to keep your baby safe. | The Sacramento Bee," 16 Mar. 2018 Many of the brain areas with exaggerated folding are among the earliest to develop folds during gestation, says Ruth Carper, associate research professor of psychology at San Diego State University, who co-led the study with Müller. Rachel Zamzow, Scientific American, "Brains of Children with Autism Show Unusual Folding Patterns," 9 July 2018 About 42 percent of the cases in this outbreak were newborns infected during gestation, the W.H.O. said. Emily Baumgaertner, New York Times, "Bologna Blamed in Worst Listeria Outbreak in History," 30 Mar. 2018 Josephine Ethel Sweigart was born March 18, 2016, at just 28 weeks' gestation. Maureen C. Gilmer, Indianapolis Star, "Their baby died after 18 days, but parents turn grief into a campaign of hope on Facebook," 18 Mar. 2018 Individual states have restrictions on the procedure, including waiting periods and limits on timing, generally to before 20 to 24 weeks of gestation. Josephine Sedgwick, New York Times, "‘I Couldn’t Tell Anyone’: Women Around the World Reveal Intimate Stories of Abortion," 9 July 2018 In a typical year, Bill would put his cows in with a few bulls and nine months and 10 days later, the gestation period for a cow, 90 percent of them would give birth to calves. Josh Haner, National Geographic, "The Last Cowboys: A Cattle-Ranching Family Fights to Survive," 29 June 2018 Rather, the gestation period can be decades, as villages build up a critical mass of residents to support retailers. Neal Templin, WSJ, "What Makes Walkable Communities Work," 26 June 2018

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

1615, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for gestation

Latin gestation-, gestatio, from gestare to bear, frequentative of gerere to bear

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Dictionary Entries near gestation

Gestalt psychology







Statistics for gestation

Last Updated

13 Oct 2018

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Time Traveler for gestation

The first known use of gestation was in 1615

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English Language Learners Definition of gestation

: the time when a person or animal is developing inside its mother before it is born; also : the process of development that happens during this time

: the process by which something (such as an idea) forms and develops


ges·ta·tion | \je-ˈstā-shən \

Medical Definition of gestation 

1 : the carrying of young in the uterus from conception to delivery : pregnancy

Other Words from gestation

gestational \-shnəl, -shən-ᵊl \ adjective

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