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[preg-nuh n-see] /ˈprɛg nən si/
noun, plural pregnancies.
the state, condition, or quality of being pregnant.
Origin of pregnancy
First recorded in 1520-30; pregn(ant)1 + -ancy
Related forms
postpregnancy, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for pregnancy
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Figure 21 shows a human embryo at the beginning of the fifth week of pregnancy.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • The phenomena of pregnancy, birth and suckling are known to all, so that I shall be brief.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • They will then cease to hide their pregnancy and to be ashamed of it.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • The hygiene of pregnancy, labor and its sequels, is of the highest importance.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
  • pregnancy and childbirth play a large part in their delirium.

    The Sexual Question August Forel
British Dictionary definitions for pregnancy


noun (pl) -cies
the state or condition of being pregnant
the period from conception to childbirth
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
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Word Origin and History for pregnancy

1520s (originally figurative), from pregnant (adj.1) + -cy. Literal use attested from 1590s.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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pregnancy in Medicine

pregnancy preg·nan·cy (prěg'nən-sē)

  1. The condition of a woman or female mammal from conception until birth; the condition of being pregnant.

  2. The period during which a woman or female mammal is pregnant. Also called cyesis.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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pregnancy in Science
  1. The condition of carrying developing offspring within the body.

  2. The time period during which this condition exists; gestation.

The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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