Definition of born in English:

born

adjective

  • 1Existing as a result of birth:

    ‘she was born in Aberdeen’
    ‘I was born with a sense of curiosity’
    ‘a newly born baby’
    • ‘Lottie was exposed to the CMV virus before her birth and was born with significant brain damage.’
    • ‘Two in a hundred children in Basra are now being born with birth defects.’
    • ‘She was born with a rare birth defect that left her with a huge growth on her neck and has spent most of her early life in hospital.’
    • ‘Joshua was one of five babies born to sailors serving on Melbourne while she was absent.’
    • ‘The baby is born with a fistula tissue which can connect the esophagus with the trachea.’
    • ‘We know the story about the baby who was born to migrant parents in an occupied country.’
    • ‘Your baby is born with reflexes, some of which disappear within a few days or weeks.’
    • ‘Furthermore, the total number of babies born to teenagers is fairly small.’
    • ‘I think it stems from the tradition of visiting your local shrine one month after the baby is born to do the blessing thing.’
    • ‘A baby is not born with a sweet tooth and will only have a taste for sugar if it is given at an early age.’
    • ‘Some babies are born with a squint or their eyes roll away from each other occasionally.’
    • ‘Cases of babies born with low birth weights are five per cent higher near landfill sites.’
    • ‘If both parents carry the trait there is a one in four chance of a baby being born with the condition.’
    • ‘A few years ago a beautiful little baby girl was born to a couple living together.’
    • ‘Dame Elizabeth was born to American parents and left London for Los Angeles when she was seven.’
    • ‘He was the first baby born to a British prime minister for more than a century.’
    • ‘John was one of a family of five sons and one daughter born to proud parents Jack and Bridget.’
    • ‘In Thailand pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.’
    • ‘Sometimes clefts run in families and sometimes a baby is born with a cleft without anyone else in the family having one.’
    • ‘The biggest fall in babies born to married couples has been in homes of about average income.’
    born, formerly, previously
    View synonyms
    1. 1.1[in combination] Having a specific nationality:
      ‘a German-born philosopher’
    2. 1.2[attributive] Having a natural ability to do a particular job:
      ‘he's a born engineer’
      • ‘He thrived in the training and displayed the natural attributes of a born soldier.’
      • ‘For a born chef, it must be nice to pour your talent into a meal, and then to see, up close, a customer's appreciation.’
      • ‘He was a born soldier, and in the end he found his way back to his true calling.’
      • ‘Are you a born investment banker?’
      • ‘Are you a born athlete?’
      • ‘Morse was not a born scientist; he was an educated man who had a love for art.’
      • ‘Hannah writes like a born novelist, with a calm, seductive style and an almost Chekovian vision of subtle humour and generosity.’
      • ‘He did not own anything that could make him a born leader — no birthright, no pedigree and certainly no extraordinary attributes.’
      • ‘Counting himself neither a born athlete nor a born writer, Irving resolved to work that much harder.’
      • ‘His classmates remembered him as a born leader, an achiever, a magnetic personality.’
      born, naturally gifted, untaught
      View synonyms
    3. 1.3[predicative, with infinitive] Perfectly suited or trained to do a particular job:
      ‘men born to rule’
      • ‘hen there are some lawyers who become judges because they were born to be judges.’
      • ‘She says she was born to teach; now she runs her own school.’
      • ‘She was born to help and serve and she did not expect for any reward or recognition.’
      • ‘Although both of them believe they were born to lead, they were able to temper their leadership desires, in order to cooperate in whatever environments they were in, Arvey said.’
      • ‘He was born to be an actor, and when he conscientiously set himself to a task he could blend his genius with a thoroughly sound and intelligent craftsmanship.’
      • ‘She was born to be a goalie.’
      • ‘Whether struggling with drugs, alcohol, or some other compulsion, this series will help people discover that they were born to be free.’
      • ‘He was born to serve and served his primary constituency diligently.’
      • ‘"He was born to teach," says Julius, an assistant research scientist emeritus in the Department of Epidemiology.’
      • ‘Although she was convinced early on that she was born to be an artist, she was rarely at ease with herself.’
      • ‘t shows teachers how to create and deliver curriculum that helps all students become the motivated, successful natural learners they were born to be!’
      • ‘Balcon felt he was born to be a soldier.’
      • ‘Leading work-expert Nick Williams has identified the twelve principles of the work we were born to do.’
      • ‘He was born to break the rules.’
    4. 1.4 (of an organization, movement, or idea) brought into existence:
      ‘on 1 January 1992, the new company was born’
      • ‘The idea was born to inspire Bradford residents to attempt new challenges.’
      • ‘It was on the streets of east London over a century ago that the labour movement was born.’
      • ‘In large measure this had to do with the circumstances in which the Association movement was born.’
      • ‘After all, the organisation was born out of industrial struggles in the early 1980s.’
      • ‘There are the jolly good ideas born out of late-night-by-the-Aga desperation.’
      • ‘It took a long time from the moment when the idea was born to the point when the work was actually started.’
      • ‘And so was born the idea for the show which culminated with The Dave Gorman Collection.’
      • ‘The concept was born in early September, when Rick and Hood called Holdren to help write an impromptu play.’
      • ‘So was born the idea of placing himself on a diet, which in turn gave birth to The Obvious Diet Book.’
      • ‘In Seattle at the very end of the 20th century a new anti-capitalist movement was born.’
      • ‘It is tempting to assume that a movement born in reaction to injustice must be just.’
      • ‘The idea has not been born out of the concern for farmers, but due to political compulsions.’
      • ‘Of course new programme ideas are born out of old programme ideas.’
      • ‘The idea for the film was born in New York City during a visit six years ago.’
      • ‘The idea was born when Prince William enjoyed a pint of cider in the hotel's Road Hole Bar last summer.’
      • ‘This new Islamist movement was born with the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan in 1979.’
      • ‘The constitution was not born from fear of national authority, as Republicans maintain.’
      • ‘The idea was born from the damage done to the local tourist industry in the wake of the foot and mouth disease outbreak.’
      • ‘These ideas, though born in England, were first taken up in America and France.’
      • ‘And it is from statements like yours that ideas like liberal media bias are born.’
    5. 1.5born of Existing as a result of (a particular situation or feeling):
      ‘his work is born of despair’
      • ‘The argument against it is rich with logic and reason, while the argument for it is born of compassion and love.’
      • ‘She has a certain fondness for Xavier, born of his apparent helplessness in the face of getting by.’
      • ‘What happened at Bristol was a "tragedy born of high hopes and ambitions", the report of the independent inquiry claims.’
      • ‘Whereas alchemy attests to an optimistic future born of destruction, for Sebald there is no such certainty.’
      • ‘Though born of necessity, Duffy's invention is more than a short-term measure.’
      • ‘Most feel that failure to diversify and a complacency born of the plant's long history have sounded its death knell.’
      • ‘This was less a political protest against war, than a frustrated tantrum born of the left's own sense of exclusion.’
      • ‘He did not lack confidence, indeed he oozed it as now he oozes sweat, but it was a confidence born of ambition, not arrogance.’
      • ‘Their economic prescriptions are born of a moral philosophy that says debt is bad and more debt is worse.’
      • ‘His more recent vehicle, the Hunter Foundation, is a creature born of his obsession with Carnegie.’
      • ‘It is the epitome of true elegance, born of centuries of survival with grace.’
      • ‘Some might say this is a complete waste of time, but it is born of hope, not despair, and I will keep trying.’
      • ‘Francisco de Goya foresaw the nightmares born of the Enlightenment.’
      • ‘Theirs is an impotent, childish rage, born of a sense of failure and a resentment of American power.’
      • ‘You and your friends will share extraordinary bonds, born of surviving desperate situations.’
      • ‘Most of the interviews conducted with locals at the time involved humor born of fear.’
      • ‘Oh, how I shall miss her laugh and wonderful wisdom, born of so much experience and an innate sensitivity to life.’
      • ‘In a bond born of tears, six mothers smile again.’
      • ‘It is being portrayed as a last resort but appears to be born of frustration with a regime and a leader the world would be better off without.’
      • ‘I'm sure that, for many of our respondents, their answers are born of what happened to them last week or last month.’

Usage

On the difference between born and borne, see bear

Phrases

  • born and bred

    • By birth and upbringing, especially with reference to someone considered a typical product of a place:

      ‘he was a Cambridge man born and bred’
      • ‘I was born and bred in Belfast but my parents are from Dungannon and I've always played for Dungannon.’
      • ‘Chili was born and bred in San Antonio and real chili never met a tomato!’
      • ‘Mr Leahy, born and bred in Dublin, was called to the bar in 1979 and made a senior counsel in 1997.’
      • ‘He is proud of the fact that he is born and bred in Durrow.’
      • ‘Tom is London born and bred, which is clear from his sound, his voice, but it isn't London-y in an overbearing way either, which is nice.’
      • ‘Being Glaswegian born and bred, I have an inexplicable dislike of Edinburgh and the thought of a day in the capital did not really appeal to me.’
      • ‘Madrid born and bred, his family were ardent Atletico fans.’
      • ‘A Langcliffe woman who was born and bred by the sea has joined the crew of a tall ship to raise funds for the Mission to Seafarers charity.’
      • ‘The first group of bombers were rather well-to-do, born and bred in Britain for the most part.’
      • ‘Based on her memories of the north-east town of Strichen, where she was born and bred, it was generally well-received.’
      • ‘Both Mike and Rita are born and bred in the Test Valley area.’
      • ‘The dog born and bred in the parish certainly proved a true champion in the final on Saturday night, June 1st.’
      • ‘What would then happen if we went riding on the land belonging to my brother and I and chased a fox, which had been born and bred on our land and had eaten our pheasants?’
      • ‘Although born and bred in Lismore, over the last two years the article has been done from our new hometown, Brisbane.’
      • ‘‘A lot of it is what I remember from my youth,’ said David, who was born and bred in Cowling.’
      • ‘He was born and bred here and was extremely well liked.’
      • ‘But it could demonstrate a twisted streak in him that he would not want to play for the country both he and his parents were born and bred in.’
      • ‘A Blade born and bred, he quite obviously couldn't have been more excited if he'd been handed the keys to Old Trafford or the Bernabeu.’
      • ‘Cleckheaton born and bred, he originally trained as a chef because his father was a pub landlord, but he decided on a career in teaching instead.’
      • ‘As a Yorkshireman, born and bred, I would always argue that the best parts of England lie within the county's boundaries.’
  • born on the wrong side of the blanket

    • Illegitimate.

      • ‘But will today's audiences care about a bed-hopping rogue born on the wrong side of the blanket who eventually finds true love?’
      • ‘Well meaning professionals believed that adopted children would benefit by being shielded from the shame of being born on the wrong side of the blanket.’
      • ‘The children born on the wrong side of the blanket came from twenty different mothers, nineteen of whom had one each, while one woman had five.’
      • ‘It is a simple story of an unfortunate who had the misfortune to be born on the wrong side of the blanket.’
      • ‘He may have been born on the wrong side of the blanket, but he's everything a proper lord should be.’
      • ‘He was born on the wrong side of the blanket, as they say.’
      • ‘There is speculation that he was born on the wrong side of the blanket, as the illegitimate son of a local squire.’
      • ‘Can you name three individuals born on the wrong side of the blanket who eventually came to wear crowns?’
      • ‘This is the story of a man born on the wrong side of the blanket, a fugitive from the King's justice, and the finest swordsman in all of France.’
      • ‘If she was perchance born on the wrong side of the blanket, then she cannot become an earl's wife.’
      born out of wedlock, born of unmarried parents
      View synonyms
  • be born with a silver spoon in one's mouth

    • Be born into a wealthy family of high social standing:

      ‘it's obvious that he wasn't raised with a silver spoon’
    • see born
      • ‘You on the other hand must have been born with a silver spoon in your mouth.’
      • ‘They think that we're born with a silver spoon in our mouth.’
      • ‘So if you were born with a silver spoon in your mouth, tell people.’
      • ‘I never lived in a block of flats, but I wasn't born with a silver spoon in my mouth either.’
      • ‘It is always being said that I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth, but that's not the case.’
      • ‘You thought I was born with a silver spoon in my mouth, is that right?’
      • ‘He is American with a fresh faced, ‘well scrubbed’ look about him but was certainly not born with a silver spoon in his mouth.’
      • ‘Although he is descended from Russian aristocracy, he was not born with a silver spoon in his mouth.’
      • ‘So what is it like to be born with a silver spoon in your mouth?’
      • ‘I presume that for most people - those who were not born with a silver spoon in their mouth - there was a time when they were poor.’
  • in all one's born days

    • Used to express surprise at something one has not encountered before:

      ‘in all my born days I've never seen the like of it’
      • ‘In the castle kitchen a great fire was blazing, and Halvor went into it, but such a kitchen he had never seen in all his born days.’
      • ‘That was the strangest thing I ever saw in all my born days.’
      • ‘“He never had a gun like this in his hand in all his born days.”’
      • ‘There she saw a pair of family-heirloom "candlewick" bedspreads, the handsomest bedspreads she had seen in all her born days.’
      • ‘Even if she did still seem mad, and possessed a voice shrill enough to crack glass, she was the most gorgeous female he'd ever seen in all his born days.’
      • ‘Finally he pushed his chair back, wiped his mouth with a sleeve that had seen such service often before and spoke: ‘Bruther, that was the best feed I ever had in all my born days.’’
      • ‘It's not going to be very difficult to convince me to attend anything at the Esplanade Studios in future, because I have never heard such amazing sound in a gig in all my born days.’
      • ‘"In all my born days, in all my experience on the job, I haven't seen anything like this."’
      • ‘She told me that in all her born days she had never had to do anything like that and that she was not intending to in the near future, either.’
      • ‘You never heard such screaming and carryin' on in all your born days!’
      • ‘Edith said she had never seen anything like it in "all her born days".’
      • ‘I never saw that degree of consistency from garden produce, not in all my born days I didn't.’
      • ‘In all my born days I have never seen a West Indies side capitulate as often, as feebly or as carelessly as this one has done time and time again.’
      • ‘‘Never in all our born days!’ the woman exclaimed.’
      • ‘You never saw such an attentive audience in all your born days.’
  • not know one is born

    • Used to convey that someone has an easy life without realizing how easy it is:

      ‘you lot without families don't know you're born’
      • ‘He doesn't know he's born!’
      • ‘What I want to say to him is that he doesn't know he's born—he works 10mins drive from where he works and doesn't start til 9:30.’
      • ‘Folks these days don't know they're born.’
      • ‘The original poster should wake up and realise that he doesn't know he's born.’
      • ‘So yes, on the whole, he doesn't know he's born and is in for the shock of his life when the baby comes.’
      • ‘She doesn't know she's born; she must live on air, that girl.’
      • ‘What a softie—he doesn't know he's born!’
  • there's one (or a sucker) born every minute

    • informal There are many gullible people.

      • ‘However, generally accepted accounting principles, in their wisdom, also give companies the flexibility to book the revenue when such claims are filed (on the assumption, I guess, that there's a sucker born every minute.)’
      • ‘Sure there's a sucker born every minute, but the alarming regularity at which these ideas conceived by the company are actually sold to clients defies comprehension.’
      • ‘There is an endless market for this kind of junk, a sucker born every minute at the very least.’
      • ‘While browsing through my spam this weekend I came across the quintessential proof that perhaps there is a sucker born every minute.’
      • ‘Astrology proves one thing and one thing only—there's one born every minute.’
      • ‘Nevertheless, the comments show that there's one born every minute.’
      • ‘Look no further than eBay, which, proving there's a sucker born every minute, is the host for auctions for ‘memorabilia’ from the Pacers-Pistons brawl.’
      • ‘As the man said—and he was in a position to know—there's a sucker born every minute.’
      • ‘What I do know is that Lynxvosmia promises Stephen true eternal life, which I guess means there really is a sucker born every minute.’
      • ‘Cheval Théâtre is selling out and, indeed, the run has been extended an extra week, proving P.T. Barnum's contention that there's a sucker born every minute.’
      • ‘There's a sucker born every minute, and every one of them will fall for any worm and virus that hits their in-box.’
      • ‘Seems as if they think that there's one born every minute.’
      • ‘There really is one born every minute!’
      • ‘‘There's a sucker born every minute,’ said P.T. Barnum, the circus impresario.’
      • ‘P.T. Barnum once volunteered a $10,000 prize to anyone who could make him the butt of his own famous phrase, ‘There's a sucker born every minute.’’
      • ‘Couple this with P.T. Barnum's claim that there's a sucker born every minute, and a substantial boutique market for pure water appears.’
      • ‘There's a sucker born every minute, or something like that, and tonight I met a big one.’
      • ‘There really is one born every minute.’
      • ‘Yeah, well, there really is one born every minute and there were two of us out shopping for vacuums that night so we just ate it right up.’
      • ‘No doubt the odd ‘valued customer’ will fall for this latest spam scam; after all, there's a sucker born every minute.’
  • i (or he, she, etc.) wasn't born yesterday

    • Used to indicate that one (or another person) is not foolish or gullible.

      • ‘April's a piece of work, but I wasn't born yesterday.’
      • ‘I've heard a few things about these things; I wasn't born yesterday, you know.’
      • ‘Kiffin is a young coach, Vic, but he wasn't born yesterday.’
      • ‘This woman starts yelling and claiming she wasn't born yesterday and they have my signature and my bankruptcy paperwork.’
      • ‘But he wasn't born yesterday; he knows how the central bank works.’
      • ‘She wasn't born yesterday; fifteen years in The Big Apple teaches you something.’
      • ‘I shook my head and she proceeded to tell me how trashy it looked and that she wasn't born yesterday.’
      • ‘Come on now, we weren't born yesterday.’
      • ‘Well, Gretel wasn't born yesterday and said, 'You know, witch, I'm not myself this morning.'’
      • ‘I wasn't born yesterday okay?’
      • ‘Nice try, but I wasn't born yesterday!’
      • ‘I wasn't born yesterday, either.’
      • ‘She knew, though; she wasn't born yesterday.’
      • ‘We baby boomers have one thing going for us in this political debate: We weren't born yesterday.’
      • ‘We weren't born yesterday, and this has been going on for quite some time.’
      • ‘I protested that I wasn’t thinking that I did and my Mom gave me a knowing look that said she wasn't born yesterday’
      • ‘I understand second guessing, I will do it at times also, but let's use this to remember that Walt wasn't born yesterday.’
      • ‘Williams says she wasn't going to let the cab driver take her, as she "wasn't born yesterday."’
      • ‘Mel, I wasn't born yesterday; now go get ready before I change my mind.’
      • ‘My baby may be ten days old, but she wasn't born yesterday.’

Origin

Old English boren, past participle of beran ‘to bear’(see bear).

Pronunciation:

born

/bɔːn/