‘Woman who is with (the mother)’, probably from mid (with) + wife (woman).


  • IPA: /'mɪd.waɪf/




Midwife (plural midwives)
  1. A person, usually a woman, who is trained to assist women in childbirth, but who is not a physician.
    A hundred years ago, a midwife would bring the baby into the world - going to a hospital to deliver a baby was either impossible or unheard of.
  2. (rare, figuratively) Someone who assists in bringing about some result or project.



to Midwife

Third person singular
midwives or, rarely midwifes

Simple past
midwived or, rarely midwifed

Past participle
[[midwived or, rarely midwifed]]

Present participle
midwiving or, rarely midwifing

to Midwife (third-person singular simple present midwives or, rarely midwifes, present participle midwiving or, rarely midwifing, simple past and past participle midwived or, rarely midwifed)
  1. (transitive) To act as a midwife
  2. (transitive) (figuratively) to facilitate the emergence of
    But the bigger objective was to help Iraqis midwife a democratic model that could inspire reform across the Arab-Muslim world and give the youth there a chance at a better future.
    Thomas L. Friedman. "Attention: Baby on Board." New York Times. April 13, 2010.

Usage notesModificar

While elementary students are taught "replace 'f' with 'v'," the mistake resulting in "widwifed" is made often enough in informal/colloquial language to indicate the rule is not consistently followed.


The translations below need to be checked and inserted above into the appropriate translation tables, removing any numbers. Numbers do not necessarily match those in definitions. See instructions at Help:How to check translations.

Related termsModificar

See alsoModificar

fr:midwife ko:midwife io:midwife it:midwife ka:midwife sw:midwife hu:midwife ml:midwife no:midwife pl:midwife ru:midwife simple:midwife sv:midwife ta:midwife te:midwife vi:midwife zh:midwife

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