babe in arms

An infant, as in She's been a family friend since I was a babe in arms. Although the word “babe” for baby has been used since the 1300s, this phrase describing a child too young to walk (and hence having to be carried) dates only from about 1900.


Nearby words

  1. babbling,
  2. babbling brook,
  3. babblingly,
  4. babcock test,
  5. babe,
  6. babe in the woods,
  7. babe-in-a-cradle,
  8. babel,
  9. babel, tower of,
  10. babelic

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Examples from the Web for babe in arms

  • There were a half dozen of them—two men, three females, and one babe-in-arms.