1

maternity

play
noun ma·ter·ni·ty \mə-ˈtər-nə-tē\

Definition of maternity

plural

maternities

  1. 1a :  the quality or state of being a mother :  motherhoodb :  the qualities of a mother :  motherliness

  2. 2 :  a hospital facility designed for the care of women before and during childbirth and for the care of newborn babies

Examples of maternity in a Sentence

  1. she had such maternity at such a young age that all her classmates went to her for comfort

Recent Examples of maternity from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'maternity.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

maternity and Parts of Speech

Maternity is used as both a noun and an adjective. Maternity benefits are benefits specially provided by employers for women having babies, and usually include maternity leave, time off work. With maternity come maternal feelings, which are shown by all species of warm-blooded animals as well as a few reptiles such as crocodiles and alligators.

First Known Use of maternity

1611


2

maternity

adjective ma·ter·ni·ty

Definition of maternity

  1. 1 :  being or providing care during and immediately before and after childbirth maternity care a maternity unit

  2. 2 :  designed for wear during pregnancy a maternity dress

  3. 3 :  effective for the period close to and including childbirth maternity leave

First Known Use of maternity

1852



MATERNITY Defined for English Language Learners

maternity

play
noun

Definition of maternity for English Language Learners

  • : the state of being a mother

maternity

adjective

Definition of maternity for English Language Learners

  • : designed to be worn by a woman who is pregnant

  • : relating to the time when a woman gives birth to a baby

  • —used to refer to an area in a hospital where women who are giving birth to babies are cared for


MATERNITY Defined for Kids

maternity

play
noun ma·ter·ni·ty \mə-ˈtər-nə-tē\

Definition of maternity for Students

  1. :  the state of being a mother

Word Root of maternity

The Latin word mater, meaning “mother,” gives us the root mater or matr. Anyone or anything maternal, such as a grandparent, is related through the mother's side of the family. Maternity is the state of being a mother. A matriarch is a woman who is the mother and head of a family. A matron is a married woman who may be a mother.


Medical Dictionary

1

maternity

play
noun ma·ter·ni·ty \mə-ˈtər-nət-ē\

Medical Definition of maternity

plural

maternities

  1. :  a hospital facility designed for the care of women before and during childbirth and for the care of newborn babies


2

maternity

adjective ma·ter·ni·ty

Medical Definition of maternity

  1. 1:  being or providing care during and immediately before and after childbirth maternity care a maternity unit

  2. 2:  designed for wear during pregnancy maternity clothes

  3. 3:  effective for the period close to and including childbirth maternity leave



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