ne·​o·​nate | \ ˈnē-ə-ˌnāt How to pronounce neonate (audio) \

Definition of neonate

: a newborn child especially : a child less than a month old

Keep scrolling for more

Synonyms for neonate


babe, baby, bambino, child, infant, newborn

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

Examples of neonate in a Sentence

the hospital has added a new wing especially for neonates

Recent Examples on the Web

The committee cited a potential risk of transferring pathogenic organisms from the woman to the neonate. Jane E. Brody, New York Times, "The Importance of Infants’ Exposure to Micro-Organisms," 5 Feb. 2018 Dines determined that the whale was a female, was a full-term neonate and likely was a week old. Erika I. Ritchie, Orange County Register, "Week-old gray whale found dead north of Main Beach in Laguna," 19 Jan. 2017 One of the most interesting aspects that has come out of William S. Brown’s research is that females stay with the babies, which are called neonates, for a week to 10 or 12 days, until the babies shed. National Geographic, "Rattlesnakes Lead 'Hungry, Horny, Gregarious' Lives," 26 June 2016

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

See More

First Known Use of neonate

1925, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for neonate

borrowed from New Latin neonatus (short for infans neonatus, neo-natus puerulus, etc.), from neo- neo- + Latin natus, past participle of nāscī "to be born" — more at nation

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about neonate

Statistics for neonate

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for neonate

The first known use of neonate was in 1925

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for neonate


ne·​o·​nate | \ ˈnē-ə-ˌnāt How to pronounce neonate (audio) \

Medical Definition of neonate

: a newborn infant especially : an infant less than a month old

More from Merriam-Webster on neonate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with neonate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for neonate

Comments on neonate

What made you want to look up neonate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


miscellaneous remnants or debris

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

The Exceptions Quiz III

  • one green toy robot amidst many red toy robots
  • Which of these words does not mean "nonsense"?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Add Diction

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!