step·​child | \ ˈstep-ˌchī(-ə)ld How to pronounce stepchild (audio) \

Definition of stepchild

1 : a child of one's wife or husband by a former partner
2 : one that fails to receive proper care or attention is no longer a stepchild in the family of nations— F. R. Smith

Examples of stepchild in a Sentence

The school has long been the forgotten stepchild of the state university system.
Recent Examples on the Web The worker, who was 50 years old, left behind a wife and five children, as well as two stepchildren. Stephanie Toone, ajc, "BREAKING: Fourth Amazon worker reportedly dies from COVID-19," 6 May 2020 Rosacea tends to be like the red-haired stepchild of the dermatological world. April Long, Town & Country, "The Simplest Natural Remedies for Rosacea," 9 Apr. 2020 He has not been charged or arrested in connection with his missing stepchildren. Elisha Fieldstadt, NBC News, "Lori Vallow's niece knows where missing kids are, is involved in doomsday cult, ex alleges," 25 Feb. 2020 He is survived by his sons, James Drury, Jr. and musician Timothy Drury, as well as three stepchildren, four grandchildren and several great-grandchildren. Patrick Ryan, USA TODAY, "James Drury, star of NBC's long-running Western series 'The Virginian,' dies at 85," 6 Apr. 2020 Marx Foods, the retail face of restaurant supplier North American Meats & More, has always been the company’s stepchild, accounting for 5% of its business last month, says CEO Justin Marx. Naomi Tomky, Fortune, "Left with tons of premium food amid coronavirus shutdown, restaurant suppliers turn to consumers to stay afloat," 1 Apr. 2020 Additionally, stepchildren Anthony and fiancé Catherine, Natalie, Matthew and Julia Summa., "Donald G. Dixon," 21 Nov. 2019 Aside from Peg, Gronau is survived by his two daughters, Gretchen and Jacki, two stepchildren, Rodd Specketer and Melanie Walsh, and 11 grandchildren. Daniel I. Dorfman,, "Family, colleagues remember longtime Lake Bluff Park District board member following death," 3 June 2019 Conner-Houser, whose son and stepchildren attend a Scottsdale school, also holds a master's degree in public health. Lily Altavena, azcentral, "Parents, teachers and students are petitioning these schools to close over coronavirus," 13 Mar. 2020

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

before the 12th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2

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The first known use of stepchild was before the 12th century

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Last Updated

22 May 2020

Cite this Entry

“Stepchild.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 4 Jun. 2020.

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How to pronounce stepchild (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of stepchild

: your wife's or husband's child by a past marriage or relationship : a stepson or stepdaughter
: someone or something that does not receive enough care or attention

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More from Merriam-Webster on stepchild

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with stepchild

Spanish Central: Translation of stepchild

Nglish: Translation of stepchild for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of stepchild for Arabic Speakers

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