[ furst-bawrn ]


  1. first in the order of birth; eldest.


  1. a firstborn child.
  2. a first result or product.

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Word History and Origins

Origin of firstborn1

Middle English word dating back to 1300–50; first, born

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Example Sentences

Through no fault of his own, he’d missed out on the enviable position of firstborn.

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For example, he quotes a study that found firstborns to be “more likely to be serious, sensitive,” “conscientious,” and “good” and—this is my favorite—“fond of books.”

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Among Portuguese nobility in the 15th and 16th centuries, for example, second- and later-born sons were sent to the front as soldiers more often than firstborn sons.

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Later on, these firstborns can become “shy, even fearful,” or they become “self-reliant, independent.”

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Even a younger sibling in a multilingual family may experience language differently from a firstborn or an only child.

The christening of their firstborn Wednesday is a chance for William and Kate to honor and reward their most loyal buddies.

“Omertà,” concedes the not-firstborn son Michael writing the book.

The throne should go to the firstborn child, male or female.

Foer began writing Eating Animals when his wife, the novelist Nicole Krauss, was expecting their firstborn son.

DeMille showed three plagues—turning the Nile into blood, hail, and killing the firstborn sons.

Have mercy on thy people, upon whom thy name is invoked: and upon Israel, whom thou hast raised up to be thy firstborn.

There was in his face the combined look of a man who sees the cradle and the coffin of his firstborn.

When the father returned home, a near relative presented him with his firstborn son.

The first intimation of this was given on that awful occasion when the firstborn of the Egyptians was slain.

The mothers passion for her firstborn son was devotedly returned by him.


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