from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun A lying-in woman.

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

  • noun a woman in childbirth or shortly thereafter


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • Anglia magnarum foecunda puerpera rerum, siue solum spectes nobile, siue salum;

    The Principal Navigations, Voyages, Traffiques and Discoveries of the English Nation

  • And hereof saith a noble versifier: Transit ad æthera, virgo puerpera, virgula Jesse, Non sine corpore, sed sine tempore, tendit adesse.

    The Golden Legend, vol. 4

  • The women of the Laguna Pueblo remain unwashed and in bed for four days; very early on the fifth the puerpera is washed and dressed under the superintendence of a Sheaine or priest, who walks out, followed by the women, to see the sun rise and to render thanks for her safe delivery.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • Among the Kanikars the puerpera receives as a tonic for the first day a kari (ragout) seasoned with turmeric pepper and tamarind.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • With regard to the first period the puerpera should be as unclean during the time of the bloody flow as she is during the menstrual flow, and this period after the birth of a male child is fixed at seven days, but after the birth of a female at two weeks. 3

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • It is a custom throughout Annam that the puerpera must take a medicine consisting of a decoction of laxatives and purgatives.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • It is evident enough why the ancient Israelites considered the puerpera unclean during the first days after childbirth, but it seems difficult to explain why this uncleanliness should have lasted seven days after the birth of a male and fourteen after that of a female child.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • Similar beliefs existed among many ancient people: in Athens the puerpera was considered unclean, and whoever touched her was forbidden to visit an altar; even the midwife who was present at the confinement was obliged to perform a religious cleansing of her hands at the feast of the Amphidromies, when the new-born child was carried about the family altar.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • In Japan, the puerpera is not placed in the usual recumbent position, but sits propped up by pillows, the mat upon which she was confined being left in place.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples

  • The Wakamba ordain a coitus about the third day, and after this the puerpera is considered clean.

    Labor Among Primitive Peoples


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