infancy

noun

in·​fan·​cy ˈin-fən(t)-sē How to pronounce infancy (audio)
plural infancies
1
: early childhood
2
: a beginning or early period of existence
3
: the legal status of an infant

Examples of infancy in a Sentence

She was often sick during her infancy. a skill developed in infancy She has been a member of the church since its infancy.
Recent Examples on the Web In 2001, when online-dating services such as eHarmony were still in their infancy, BlackPlanet launched a dating service that cost $19.99 a month and helped members screen their would-be love interests. Hannah Giorgis, The Atlantic, 12 Apr. 2024 Movies, from their infancy, have been in the objectifying racket. Anthony Lane, The New Yorker, 11 Apr. 2024 With the culinary program still in its infancy, the function of the fund is still being determined. Detroit Free Press, 11 Apr. 2024 Many of them have expressed fear that AI—even in its infancy—could genuinely pose a risk to their livelihoods. Jane Thier, Fortune, 3 Apr. 2024 Although an industry still in its infancy, there’s a lot of early promise for any and all who take this (dogs included). Amber Smith, Discover Magazine, 3 Apr. 2024 But many economists and officials seem dubious that A.I. — especially generative A.I., which is still in its infancy — has spread enough to show up in productivity data already. Jeanna Smialek, New York Times, 28 Mar. 2024 The technologies are only in their infancy and in a limited state of deployment but, already, watermarking has proven to be easy to bypass. Kevin Collier, NBC News, 19 Mar. 2024 Rio Grande do Sul's startup scene is still in its infancy, with approximately 300 companies mapped, according to the RS Tech report, carried out by the government alongside Instituto Caldeira. Angelica Mari, Forbes, 27 Mar. 2024

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'infancy.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

Time Traveler
The first known use of infancy was in the 14th century

Dictionary Entries Near infancy

Cite this Entry

“Infancy.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/infancy. Accessed 23 Apr. 2024.

Kids Definition

infancy

noun
in·​fan·​cy ˈin-fən-sē How to pronounce infancy (audio)
plural infancies
1
: early childhood
2
: a beginning or early period of existence

Medical Definition

infancy

noun
in·​fan·​cy ˈin-fən-sē How to pronounce infancy (audio)
plural infancies
1
: early childhood
2
: the legal status of an infant

Legal Definition

infancy

noun
in·​fan·​cy ˈin-fən-sē How to pronounce infancy (audio)
plural infancies
1
: the legal status of an infant : minority
2
: the affirmative defense of lacking legal capacity (as to make a contract or commit a crime) because of being too young and especially because one's age is below an age set by statute
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