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maternal

[muh-tur-nl]
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adjective
  1. of, pertaining to, having the qualities of, or befitting a mother: maternal instincts.
  2. related through a mother: his maternal aunt.
  3. derived from a mother: maternal genes.
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Origin of maternal

1475–85; < Medieval Latin māternālis, equivalent to Latin mātern(us) (māter mother1 + -nus adj. suffix) + -ālis -al1
Related formsma·ter·nal·ism, nounma·ter·nal·is·tic, adjectivema·ter·nal·ly, adverbnon·ma·ter·nal, adjectivenon·ma·ter·nal·ly, adverbqua·si-ma·ter·nal, adjectivequa·si-ma·ter·nal·ly, adverbun·ma·ter·nal, adjectiveun·ma·ter·nal·ly, adverb
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Examples from the Web for maternalism

Historical Examples

  • Esmé patted the other's head with an absurd and delightful affectation of maternalism.

    The Clarion

    Samuel Hopkins Adams


British Dictionary definitions for maternalism

maternal

adjective
  1. of, relating to, derived from, or characteristic of a mother
  2. related through the mother's side of the familyhis maternal uncle
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Derived Formsmaternalism, nounmaternalistic, adjectivematernally, adverb

Word Origin

C15: from Medieval Latin māternālis, from Latin māternus, from māter mother
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition © William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012

Word Origin and History for maternalism

maternal

adj.

late 15c., from Old French maternel (14c.), from Vulgar Latin *maternalis, from Latin maternus "maternal, of a mother," from mater "mother" (see mother (n.1)).

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper

maternalism in Medicine

maternal

(mə-tûrnəl)
adj.
  1. Relating to or characteristic of a mother.
  2. Inherited from one's mother.
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The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.