Definition of pregnant in English:



  • 1(of a woman or female animal) having a child or young developing in the uterus.

    ‘she was heavily pregnant with her second child’
    ‘she was six months pregnant’
    • ‘The practice of screening all pregnant women for syphilis in every pregnancy should continue.’
    • ‘Now she was pregnant, too young to be legally married, and some difficult decisions would have to be made.’
    • ‘Back at the centre there is a call from a young pregnant woman requiring telephone advice.’
    • ‘Midwives and pregnant women said that they found the booklets used in the intervention acceptable.’
    • ‘Free fruit through a supermarket voucher scheme is also planned for pregnant women and for preschool children.’
    • ‘A pregnant woman can transmit the infection to her baby during delivery.’
    • ‘My wife and I were overjoyed when we did a pregnancy test confirming she was pregnant with our second child.’
    • ‘The Department of Health advises pregnant women, to eat according to their appetite and to keep an eye on weight gain.’
    • ‘Boys are immunised, too, so that they won't be a source of infection to non-immune pregnant women.’
    • ‘All pregnant women, whatever their age, should be offered screening before 20 weeks.’
    • ‘Quinine alone is recommended now only for pregnant women, for whom no satisfactory alternatives exist.’
    • ‘The occurrence of pruritus in pregnant women should be the subject of routine inquiry, and when present acted on.’
    • ‘My problem now is that my youngest daughter is pregnant and she and her partner are getting married next year.’
    • ‘Anti-inflammatory drugs are among the commonest drugs prescribed to pregnant women.’
    • ‘In the United Kingdom over a quarter of pregnant women who smoke continue to do so during pregnancy.’
    expecting a baby, having a baby, with a baby on the way, having a child, expectant, carrying a child
    View synonyms
  • 2Full of meaning; significant or suggestive.

    ‘a pregnant pause’
    ‘a development pregnant with implications’
    • ‘What is left unsaid, is communicated through glances, silences and pregnant pauses.’
    • ‘There was a pregnant pause, and he continued, voice a little shaky.’
    • ‘This muteness is unsettling, somehow pregnant with infinite meaning and utterly devoid of any at all.’
    • ‘Fortunately, Shane comes to the rescue with a well timed pregnant pause - or is he asleep?’
    • ‘There was a pregnant pause, then Caitlin sighed sadly, reaching out to trace a finger over the figure on the screen.’
    • ‘There was the most pregnant of pauses as the camera panned along the faces in the panel.’
    • ‘The direction perks up in the second half but overall allows too many pregnant pauses by the actors.’
    filled, charged, heavy, fraught, replete, teeming
    meaningful, significant, eloquent
    View synonyms


Late Middle English: from Latin praegnant-, probably from prae ‘before’ + the base of gnasci ‘be born’.