kit·​ten | \ ˈki-tᵊn How to pronounce kitten (audio) \

Definition of kitten

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: a young cat also : an immature or young individual of various other small mammals


kittened; kittening\ ˈkit-​niŋ , ˈki-​tᵊn-​iŋ How to pronounce kitten (audio) \

Definition of kitten (Entry 2 of 2)

intransitive verb

: to give birth to kittens

Examples of kitten in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Lisa Laufman of Deerfield Beach also went back to the office recently, and can’t stop thinking about her kitten, Missy, adopted on Jan. 25. Lois K. Solomon,, "They fell in love with their pandemic pets. Now they don’t want to leave them.," 30 Apr. 2021 The used bookstore/cat lounge will be named after a baby kitten, Morti, short for Morticia, who passed away last year. Rachel Kramer Bussel, Forbes, "Bookstore And Cat Adoption Lounge Planned In Petaluma, California," 27 Apr. 2021 Recently, Martin and a colleague named Irving Lu managed to track down the identity of the real-life kitten that provided its image for their original filter. Ian Crouch, The New Yorker, "The Anguish of the Feline Webcam Filter," 25 Mar. 2021 Spot the kitten was the only passenger waiting when Cassidy Timm and Blake Ward arrived to pick her up. Claire Stremple, Anchorage Daily News, "A kitten wandered off a ferry in Juneau on a trip from the Lower 48. Now she’s reunited with her owners — in Haines.," 12 Mar. 2021 The brown-black-and-white kitten was 3 months old and already on the second of his nine lives., "Best of Harford County 2020," 28 Feb. 2021 The incident follows other virtual courtroom mishaps this year -- including when a lawyer appeared as a sad kitten on screen during a Texas court proceeding last month. Kelsie Smith And Dan Simon, CNN, "A California doctor performed surgery during a Zoom court appearance," 1 Mar. 2021 The feline, Brandy, and her owner, Charles, were separated in 2005 just months after she was adopted as a kitten. Naledi Ushe,, "Cat Reunited with Owner 15 years After the Then-Kitten Went Missing: ‘It’s Unbelievable’," 26 Feb. 2021 The gulf in prices between a Second Life kitten (about $4.30) and a Nyan Cat NFT (around $600,000) raises the question of which kind of temperament in the NFT market will outlive the other. Samanth Subramanian, Quartz, "As Covid-19 destroyed real economies, Second Life’s economy boomed," 25 Feb. 2021 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The Row, wearing a billowing white button down over a white t-shirt, beige pleated trousers with a black leather belt, and black thong kitten heels. Emily Dixon, Marie Claire, "Kendall Jenner's Pastel Yellow Co-ord Just Screams Spring," 29 Apr. 2021 Chewy shoppers adored this cat climber for its easy assembly, with many also praising it for keeping their kitten busy on long workdays. Nicole Briese, USA TODAY, "National Pet Day 2021: The best deals to shop for your dog or cat," 11 Apr. 2021 As for footwear, Michelle has traded out her kitten heels. Vogue, "How This Celebrity Stylist Is Streamlining Her Pregnancy Look," 26 Mar. 2021 Questions about dog adoptions can be emailed to; cat adoption questions can be sent to and kitten adoption questions can be submitted to Carol Kovach, cleveland, "Seven Hills Farmers Market is accepting applications for 2021 season: Sun Postings," 23 Mar. 2021 This 9-month-old boy is your typical rascally kitten: playful, curious and full of energy., "Pet of the week," 9 Jan. 2021 One serval kitten in a crate appeared lethargic, with watery eyes and diarrhea. Animals, "The black-market trade in wildlife has moved online, and the deluge is 'dizzying'," 18 Dec. 2020 The visually arresting 22-year-old looks plucked out of a Pre-Raphaelite painting with long black curly hair and old-world features, and frequently wears a vintage Oasis T-shirt and Manolo kitten heels. Liana Satenstein, Vogue, "This 22-Year-Old Is Paying for College by Selling Rare Vintage on Depop," 22 Dec. 2020 Rosario Rodriguez paused long enough to see the video of the brown kitten twice. Steve Rubenstein,, "Chalk it up to 2020: To prevent crowds, pet adoption drive at Macy’s goes virtual," 24 Nov. 2020

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


14th century, in the meaning defined above


15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for kitten


Middle English kitoun, from Anglo-French *kiton, chiton, diminutive of cat, chat cat, from Late Latin cattus

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Time Traveler for kitten

Time Traveler

The first known use of kitten was in the 14th century

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Statistics for kitten

Last Updated

3 May 2021

Cite this Entry

“Kitten.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 14 May. 2021.

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More Definitions for kitten



English Language Learners Definition of kitten

: a young cat


kit·​ten | \ ˈki-tᵊn How to pronounce kitten (audio) \

Kids Definition of kitten

: a young cat

Other Words from kitten

kittenish \ ˈki-​tᵊn-​ish \ adjective

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