pu·​bes·​cent | \ pyü-ˈbe-sᵊnt How to pronounce pubescent (audio) \

Definition of pubescent

1a : arriving at or having reached puberty
b : of or relating to puberty
2 : covered with fine soft short hairs — compare villous

Examples of pubescent in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web

And at school, with pubescent boys cooped up for months at a time, slurs about homosexuality were the ones most often thrown at anyone who strayed very far from the strict confines of the norm. Michael Lindsay-hogg, Town & Country, "Brando in a Blue Blazer," 22 Aug. 2013 At the time, a social worker, foster parents and therapist pigeonholed the child, known then as Christina, as a troubled, pubescent girl who acted out for attention. Samantha Young, sacbee, "Should ‘gender-affirming health care’ be on the radar for California’s foster kids?," 2 July 2018 Saedi adroitly and humorously uses these universal pubescent ordeals to contextualize Iranian culture and the immigrant experience. Jennifer Hubert Swan, New York Times, "New Y.A. Books by Women of Color Rewrite Old Cultural Scripts," 2 Mar. 2018 Helker pleaded guilty to one count of foreign distribution of child pornography involving an image of a pubescent boy and prepubescent girls. Scott Wente, Twin Cities, "Former Cottage Grove pastor pleads guilty in federal child porn case," 13 Mar. 2017 Using a trail of clues that included Deyte’s smartwatch, leaked e-mails, and Rogers’s computer, teams of pubescent cyber-forensic investigators were tasked with determining the culprit. Carrie Battan, The New Yorker, "Inside Cyber Security Awareness Week," 9 Jan. 2017 Leno by his own admission was inspired by the Brits, but his adaptation has the potential to appeal to more than pubescent boys excited by rock stars almost flipping a family car. Jeremy Hart, WIRED, "Jay Leno Brings EVs Into America’s Living Room," 18 Sep. 2009 If Carell can overcome that pubescent mustache, the underlying message is, any dream is within reach. Rebecca Keegan,, "Disney, Donald Trump, and the Dilemma of the Democrat C.E.O.," 3 Feb. 2017

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

1646, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for pubescent

Latin pubescent-, pubescens, present participle of pubescere to reach puberty, become covered as with hair, from pubes

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about pubescent

Dictionary Entries near pubescent








Statistics for pubescent

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for pubescent

The first known use of pubescent was in 1646

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for pubescent



English Language Learners Definition of pubescent

: beginning to physically develop into an adult : having reached puberty


pu·​bes·​cent | \ -ᵊnt How to pronounce pubescent (audio) \

Medical Definition of pubescent

1 : arriving at or having reached puberty
2 : of or relating to puberty

More from Merriam-Webster on pubescent

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with pubescent

Comments on pubescent

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


a device or gadget

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”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Word Winder's CrossWinder

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!