- 1a female parent of a child or animal; a person who is acting as a mother to a child I want to buy a present for my mother and father. the relationship between mother and baby She's the mother of twins. a mother of three (= with three children) an expectant (= pregnant) mother She was a wonderful mother to both her natural and adopted children. the mother chimpanzee caring for her young
- 2the title of a woman who is head of a convent (= a community of nuns ) see also Mother Superior Idioms
nounjump to other results
when you were very young I learned these songs at my mother's knee.
at your mother's kneejump to other results
used to emphasize that something is very large, unpleasant, important, etc. I got stuck in the mother of all traffic jams.
the mother of (all) something(informal)jump to other results
a difficult new problem forces people to think of a solution to it
necessity is the mother of invention(saying)jump to other results
very much older than someone (especially used to suggest that a romantic relationship between the two people is not appropriate)
old enough to be somebody's father/mother(disapproving)jump to other results