life history


Definition of life history

1 : a history of the changes through which an organism passes in its development from the primary stage to its natural death
2 : the history of an individual or thing

Examples of life history in a Sentence

studying the life history of bears
Recent Examples on the Web For a narrative set in a simulated Cuba, this is particularly insensitive to the centrality of the trans-Atlantic slave trade to the island’s real-life history and culture. Phillip Penix-tadsen, Wired, 9 Oct. 2021 While the former provides insight into what genes are turned on, the latter, measuring the chromatin state of each cell, is more akin to the life history of the cell and, ultimately, its identity. Christof Koch, Scientific American, 6 Oct. 2021 But an independent reviewer of the lab analysis warned that no definitive conclusion could be reached about this particular bighead's life history. Dan Egan,, 30 Aug. 2021 The problem: Beyond the peer reviewer's caution not to use this fish's ear bones to infer anything about its life history, ear bones don't contain any information about how a fish moved from one water body to another. Dan Egan,, 30 Aug. 2021 The fact that young tyrannosaurs had to grow into their bone-crunching abilities might have greater implications than the life history of these Cretaceous celebrities. Riley Black, Smithsonian Magazine, 2 Aug. 2021 At sentencing judges consider the facts of the case, legal parameters and a presentence investigation of the defendant that examines their life history and thoughts about the crime. Chao Xiong, Star Tribune, 23 June 2021 Senior editor Kate Wong and illustrator Cherie Sinnen present the bizarre life history of 17- and 13-year cicadas. Laura Helmuth, Scientific American, 10 May 2021 Exactly how periodical cicadas came to have these unique life history patterns is an area of active research. Kate Wong, Scientific American, 10 May 2021

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

1848, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of life history was in 1848

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Last Updated

23 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Life history.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 26 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for life history

life history


English Language Learners Definition of life history

: the full range of changes, habits, and behaviors of a living thing over the course of its life

life history


Medical Definition of life history

1a : a history of the changes through which an organism passes in its development from the primary stage to its natural death
b : one series of the changes in a life history
2 : the history of an individual's development in his or her social environment

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