moth‧er1 S1 W1 [countable]
a female parent of a child or animal:
His mother and father are both doctors.
mother of two/three etc (=mother of two/three etc children)
Janet is a full-time teacher and a mother of two.
the relationship between mother and child
Mother said they'd met at university.
If food is scarce, the mother will feed the smaller, weaker chicks.
mother cat/bird/hen etc (=an animal that is a mother)
to care for someone as if you were their mother:
She's like a mother to them. If they need anything she always helps out.
if someone behaves like a mother hen, they try to protect their children too much and worry about them all the time
to learn something when you are a very young child:
the prayers which he had been taught at his mother's knee
the origin or cause of something:
Westminster is known as 'the mother of parliaments'.
Necessity is the mother of invention (=people have good ideas when the situation makes it necessary).
a very severe or extreme type of something, usually something bad:
I woke up with the mother of all hangovers.
6 spoken especially American English
something very large and usually very good:
a real mother of a car
7 American English taboo spoken
used to address the woman who is in charge of a convent