parent

noun
par·​ent | \ ˈper-ənt How to pronounce parent (audio) \

Definition of parent

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : one that begets or brings forth offspring just became parents of twins
b : a person who brings up and cares for another foster parents
2a : an animal or plant that is regarded in relation to its offspring The parent brings food to the chicks.
b : the material or source from which something is derived Latin is the parent of several languages.
c : a group from which another arises and to which it usually remains subsidiary a parent company

parent

verb
parented; parenting; parents

Definition of parent (Entry 2 of 2)

transitive verb

: to be or act as the parent of : originate, produce

intransitive verb

: to be or act as a parent

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from parent

Noun

parent adjective
parental \ pə-​ˈren-​tᵊl How to pronounce parental (audio) \ adjective
parentally \ pə-​ˈren-​tᵊl-​ē How to pronounce parentally (audio) \ adverb
parentless \ ˈper-​ənt-​ləs How to pronounce parentless (audio) \ adjective

Examples of parent in a Sentence

Noun

My parents live in New York. The form must be signed by a parent or guardian of the child. The parent brings food to the chicks. The new plant will have characteristics of both parent plants.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

He is predeceased by his parents Lewis A Bailey and Bernice Kilner, his half-brother Robert Root and his wife of 68 years Helen McGuire. Orlando Sentinel, OrlandoSentinel.com, "Deaths in Central Florida: 6/16," 16 June 2019 He is predeceased by his parents Lewis A Bailey and Bernice Kilner, his half-brother Robert Root and his wife of 68 years Helen McGuire. orlandosentinel.com, "Deaths in Central Florida: 6/15," 15 June 2019 The ceremony began with home videos and words from his parents about a young boy with an incredible natural ability. Betsy Helfand, Twin Cities, "Twins retire No. 7 uniform of Joe Mauer, ‘a kid from St. Paul’," 15 June 2019 Shortly after watching La Crosse Central play its first game in UW’s team camp, Gard met with brothers Johnny and Jordan Davis and their parents. Jeff Potrykus, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Davis brothers from La Crosse commit to play basketball for Wisconsin," 15 June 2019 The Smiths are also parents to daughter London, 7, and son Lincoln Monarch, 5. Anika Reed, USA TODAY, "Granger Smith supporters raise over $88K in honor of late son with tribute t-shirt," 14 June 2019 Cyrus Vance, Robert Mueller, and Amy Berman Jackson may well be good parents, loving spouses, loyal friends, and charitable individuals. Dennis Prager, National Review, "Leftism Makes People Meaner," 11 June 2019 Gone are the days of dads who have never changed a diaper, and yet people are still surprised that men can be as capable parents as women. Bethanie Baynes, refinery29.com, "You Know What Dads Don't Need This Father's Day? Momsplaining," 10 June 2019 So yes, these other two couples are parents of toddlers. Amy Dickinson, The Mercury News, "Ask Amy: I want them out of our life because of playdate unfairness," 8 June 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

South Dakota star Chris Nilsen balances parenting with pole vaulting. oregonlive.com, "On Track Town, Cravon Gillespie, Jessica Hull and the NCAA Chamionships: Oregon track & field rundown," 4 June 2019 To take a shower, make coffee, schedule a doctor’s appointment, take a work call, text your best friend, or do absolutely anything that can give you a break from the omnipresent need-fulfillment that is parenting young children. Laura Turner, Glamour, "The Big Problem With the New Screen Time Guidelines for Kids," 26 Apr. 2019 People younger than that are routinely trusted with life-and-death situations in a huge array of contexts, ranging from parenting to military service. Matthew Yglesias, Vox, "It’s ridiculous that it’s unconstitutional for Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez to run for president," 12 Dec. 2018 Hood, who was Temple’s leading rusher last season, was one of four Owls players parenting young children in 2017, including Hood’s former roommate and fellow running back Ryquell Armstead. Washington Post, "School, fatherhood, football connect former Temple teammates," 15 June 2018 Just as there were rules on the field, so too were there rules on how to parent a son. Kate Stone Lombardi, Good Housekeeping, "Studies Show Boys Who Are Close to Their Mothers Do Better, Physically and Psychologically," 30 Apr. 2019 And that isn’t (just) a dig on Tucker’s parenting abilities. Jennifer Wright, Harper's BAZAAR, "Despite What Tucker Carlson Thinks, Women Aren't Something to Possess," 19 Mar. 2019 Besides data, the report recommended the state recruit more families suited to foster pregnant or parenting teens and boost training for case workers who feel ill-equipped to discuss reproductive health. Allie Morris, Houston Chronicle, "Texas Child Protection leader slams foster care pregnancy report," 25 May 2018 The proximity could prove useful as the former couple continues to co-parent their two kids, Taylor and Brayden. Taysha Murtaugh, Country Living, "See Inside Tarek El Moussa's Bachelor Pad Home Following Divorce From Christina," 2 Aug. 2018

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

Noun

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Verb

1663, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

History and Etymology for parent

Noun

Middle English, borrowed from Anglo-French & Latin; Anglo-French, borrowed from Latin parent-, parens "father or mother, progenitor, ancestor," probably from an aorist participle of parere "to give birth to, bring into being, produce" — more at parturient entry 1

Verb

derivative of parent entry 1

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about parent

Statistics for parent

Last Updated

20 Jun 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for parent

The first known use of parent was in the 15th century

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for parent

parent

noun

English Language Learners Definition of parent

: a person who is a father or mother : a person who has a child
: an animal or plant that produces a young animal or plant
: something out of which another thing has developed

parent

noun
par·​ent | \ ˈper-ənt How to pronounce parent (audio) \

Kids Definition of parent

1 : a father or mother of a child
2 : an animal or plant that produces offspring

parent

noun
par·​ent | \ ˈpar-ənt, ˈper- How to pronounce parent (audio) \

Medical Definition of parent

1 : one that begets or brings forth offspring
2 : the material or source from which something is derived

Other Words from parent

parent adjective
parental \ pə-​ˈrent-​ᵊl How to pronounce parental (audio) \ adjective

Keep scrolling for more

parent

noun
par·​ent

Legal Definition of parent

1a : a person who begets or brings forth offspring especially : the natural parents of a child born of their marriage
b : a person who legally adopts a child
c : a person or entity that owes to a child a legally imposed duty of support
d : a stepparent where designated by statute
2 : an entity or group that gives rise to or acquires another usually subsidiary entity or group a parent company specifically : a corporation that owns a required minimum percentage of the stock of another corporation — compare affiliate

Other Words from parent

parent adjective
parental \ pə-​ˈren-​təl How to pronounce parental (audio) \ adjective
parentally adverb

Keep scrolling for more

More from Merriam-Webster on parent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with parent

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for parent

Spanish Central: Translation of parent

Nglish: Translation of parent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of parent for Arabic Speakers

Britannica.com: Encyclopedia article about parent

Comments on parent

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

WORD OF THE DAY

to take the place or position of

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words for Summer: A Quiz

  • a closeup of a sunflower
  • Which of the following words means “of or relating to summer”?
Spell It

Can you spell these 10 commonly misspelled words?

TAKE THE QUIZ
Syn City

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

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

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