swaddling clothes

See synonyms for swaddling clothes on Thesaurus.com
plural noun
  1. clothes consisting of long, narrow strips of cloth for swaddling an infant.

  2. long garments for an infant.

  1. the period of infancy or immaturity, as of a person, or incipience, as of a thing: Nuclear energy is still in its swaddling clothes.

  2. rigid supervision or restriction of actions or movements, as of the immature: new nations that are freeing themselves of their swaddling clothes.

Origin of swaddling clothes

First recorded in 1525–35
  • Also called swaddling bands (for defs. 1, 2).

Words Nearby swaddling clothes

Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use swaddling clothes in a sentence

  • I reached for the things—swaddling clothes I called them—and Severnius helped me to array myself in them.

    Unveiling a Parallel | Alice Ilgenfritz Jones and Ella Marchant
  • When opened for the purpose of grasping the sugar, the body, which is hollow, discloses the image of a baby in swaddling clothes.

  • Otherwise, he is reduced to a state of mental infancy, and kept in intellectual swaddling clothes.

  • The new life of science was feeble at first, and remained long in its swaddling clothes.

  • I have yet to hear of the birth of this infant navy, for which we have not yet begun to make swaddling clothes.

    Richard Carvel, Complete | Winston Churchill

British Dictionary definitions for swaddling clothes

swaddling clothes

pl n
  1. long strips of linen or other cloth formerly wrapped round a newly born baby

  2. restrictions or supervision imposed on the immature

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