Explore CHILDREN Topic

Language: Old English
Origin: cild


child S1 W1 plural children [countable]

young person

someone who is not yet an adult [= kid]:
The hotel is ideal for families with young children.
Your interest and support are important to your child.
The film is not suitable for children under 12.
I was very happy as a child (=when I was a child).
three-year-old child/child of eight etc
For a child of five this was a terrifying experience.
parents with pre-school children (=children who are too young to go to school)
an agreement to regulate child labour (=the use of children in industry)
child killer/victim/prostitute etc (=a child who is a killer etc)
the rights of the unborn child (=a baby that is still inside its mother)


a son or daughter of any age:
I have five children, all happily married.
She lives with her husband, Paul, and three grown-up children.
Annie had always wanted to get married and have children.
Alex is an only child (=he has no brothers or sisters).
youngest/eldest child especially British English
Our youngest child, Sam, has just started university.
youngest/middle/oldest child especially American English

somebody influenced by an idea

someone who is very strongly influenced by the ideas and attitudes of a particular period of history
child of
a real child of the Sixties

somebody who is like a child

someone who behaves like a child and is not sensible or responsible - used to show disapproval:

something is child's play

used to say that something is very easy to do:
I've cooked for 200 people before now. So, tonight is child's play by comparison.

children should be seen and not heard

an expression meaning that children should be quiet and not talk - used when you disapprove of the way a child is behaving

be with child

old use to be pregnant

be heavy/great with child

old use to be nearly ready to give birth