- (used chiefly of viviparous mammals) the young of an animal in the womb or egg, especially in the later stages of development when the body structures are in the recognizable form of its kind, in humans after the end of the second month of gestation.
Origin of fetus
Examples from the Web for foetus
By the end of the eighth month the foetus has thickened out.Sex
In some cases the malleus of the foetus differs strikingly from that of the adult.The Vertebrate Skeleton
Sidney H. Reynolds
On the relative weights of the right and left sides of the body in the foetus.Parallel Paths
Thomas William Rolleston
He can not first examine the foetus and then stop the hemorrhage.
If the foetus goes on growing in this case, we have an abdominal pregnancy.
- a variant spelling of fetus
- the embryo of a mammal in the later stages of development, when it shows all the main recognizable features of the mature animal, esp a human embryo from the end of the second month of pregnancy until birthCompare embryo (def. 2)
Word Origin and History for foetus
late 14c., "the young while in the womb or egg," from Latin fetus (often, incorrectly, foetus) "the bearing, bringing forth, or hatching of young," from Latin base *fe- "to generate, bear," also "to suck, suckle" (see fecund).
In Latin, fetus sometimes was transferred figuratively to the newborn creature itself, or used in a sense of "offspring, brood" (cf. Horace's "Germania quos horrida parturit Fetus"), but this was not the basic meaning. Also used of plants, in the sense of "fruit, produce, shoot." The spelling foetus is sometimes attempted as a learned Latinism, but it is not historic.
- The unborn young of a viviparous vertebrate having a basic structural resemblance to the adult animal.
- In humans, the unborn young from the end of the eighth week after conception to the moment of birth.
- The unborn offspring of a mammal at the later stages of its development, especially a human from eight weeks after fertilization to its birth. In a fetus, all major body organs are present.