from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • n. A child in the earliest period of life, especially before he or she can walk.
  • n. Law A person under the legal age of majority; a minor.
  • adj. Of or being in infancy.
  • adj. Intended for infants or young children.
  • adj. Newly begun or formed: an infant enterprise.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. A very young human being, from birth to somewhere between six months and two years of age, needing almost constant care and/or attention.
  • n. A minor.
  • n. A noble or aristocratic youth.
  • v. To bear or bring forth (a child); to produce, in general.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Of or pertaining to infancy, or the first period of life; tender; not mature.
  • adj. Intended for young children.
  • n. A child in the first period of life, beginning at his birth; a young babe; sometimes, a child several years of age.
  • n. A person who is not of full age, or who has not attained the age of legal capacity; a person under the age of twenty-one years; a minor.
  • n. Same as Infante.
  • transitive v. To bear or bring forth, as a child; hence, to produce, in general.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. child during the earliest period of its life; a young child. See infancy.
  • n. In law, a person who is not of full age; specifically (in Great Britain, the United States, etc.), one who has not attained the age of twenty-one years.
  • n. A noble youth. See child, n., 8.
  • Of, pertaining to, characterized by, or characteristic of infancy; hence, tender; infantile; incipient: as, infant beauty; infant fortunes.
  • Of or pertaining to the legal state of infancy; minor.
  • Figuratively, not yet fully grown; still in an early stage of development or growth: as, infant colonies; an infant bud.
  • To bring forth as an infant; hence, to give origin or rise to.
  • n. A royal prince or princess of Spain or Portugal: as, the Infant Don Philip: not necessarily the heir to the throne. See infante, infanta.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a very young child (birth to 1 year) who has not yet begun to walk or talk


Middle English, from Old French enfant, from Latin īnfāns, īnfant-, from īnfāns, not able to speak, young : in-, not; + fāns, present participle of fārī, to speak.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Latin īnfantem, accusative masculine singular of īnfāns, nominal use of the adjective meaning 'not able to speak', from īn- ("not") + fāns, present participle of for ("to speak"). The verb is from Anglo-Norman enfanter, from the same Latin source. (Wiktionary)



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