Definition of gestation noun from the Oxford Advanced Learner's Dictionary



    BrE BrE//dʒeˈsteɪʃn//
    ; NAmE NAmE//dʒeˈsteɪʃn//
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  1. 1[uncountable, singular] the time that the young of a person or an animal develops inside its mother’s body until it is born; the process of developing inside the mother’s body a baby born at 38 weeks’ gestation The gestation period of a horse is about eleven months. See related entries: Pregnancy
  2. 2[uncountable] (formal) the process by which an idea or a plan develops synonym development His book was nearly twenty years in gestation.
  3. Word Originmid 16th cent. (denoting ‘an excursion on horseback, in a carriage, etc., considered as exercise’): from Latin gestatio(n-), from gestare ‘carry, carry in the womb’, frequentative of gerere ‘carry’.
See the Oxford Advanced American Dictionary entry: gestation