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

  • n. The condition of a woman in the process of giving birth.
  • adj. Of or intended for use during childbirth: a lying-in hospital.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • n. The final stages of pregnancy; accouchement.
  • adj. of, or relating to childbirth

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • n. The state attending, and consequent to, childbirth; confinement.
  • n. The act of bearing a child.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • n. Confinement in childbed.
  • Pertaining to childbirth; obstetrical: as, a lying-in hospital.

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

  • n. concluding state of pregnancy; from the onset of contractions to the birth of a child


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The visitor, fascinated by the man's passion and occasional lucidity, discovers that he was a doctor at the lying-in wards of the General Hospital: Professor Ignaz Semmelweiss, who ran afoul of his colleagues by insisting that the very high incidence of fatal childbed fever could be checked if the doctors washed their hands before examining the patients.

    The Birth of Love by Joanna Kavenna

  • I did not see what good an unmarried gentlewoman would be at a lying-in, but I did not argue.

    Secrets of the Tudor Court

  • Such derangement may begin any time after conception, and may end after delivery or continue after birth, wrote physician George Man Burrows in 1828; some women “are insane on every pregnancy or lying-in, others only occasionally.”


  • When they were finished, Epstein spoke with Will and asked him about the arrangements that had been made for Carolines lying-in.

    The Lovers

  • But thou, - why thus unwashed and clad in foul attire, now that the days of thy lying-in are accomplished?


  • “A bonny errand it is,” said old Lucky Simson, “to carry away a lying-in woman as a gled [Footnote: Or Kite.] would do a clocking-hen.”

    The Surgeon's Daughter

  • She was taken to the lying-in room and attended by two midwives, four maids, Balhamel the physician and the crone named Dyldra, who was profound in the lore of herbs, and by some considered a witch.

    Archive 2008-09-01

  • They had them, indeed, for every profession, for every action of life, for children, marriageable girls, married, and lying-in women: they had even the god Peditum; and finally, they idolized their emperors.

    A Philosophical Dictionary

  • When the operation was performed, and all the Sichemites, or Sechemites, were lying-in of the pains consequent thereupon, the holy patriarchs Simeon and Levi cut all their throats one after another.

    A Philosophical Dictionary

  • One cannot help but compare this lengthy recovery from childbirth with the immediate return to productive work by plebeian women after a nine-day lying-in period.

    Gutenber-e Help Page


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