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critical period

(psychol) a period in a lifetime during which a specific stage of development usually occurs. If it fails to do so, it cannot readily occur afterwards
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Examples from the Web for critical period
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Not one in a thousand could do so, with such an exposure at the critical period of his sickness.

  • Apart from this critical period, life at Darmstadt bored him considerably.

    Victorian Worthies George Henry Blore
  • This critical period drew forth many examples of great and confiding liberality, as well as some of a very opposite character.

    The Greville Memoirs Charles C. F. Greville
  • Some assistance is needed at the outset to tide it past the critical period.

    Monopolies and the People Charles Whiting Baker
  • It is a critical period,—she has reached the breaking point.

  • Lyad had been locked in her cabin again as the critical period approached.

    Legacy James H Schmitz
  • John Bratiano is the sole trustee of the nation at the most critical period of its history.

    England and Germany Emile Joseph Dillon
Contemporary definitions for critical period

a time in a person's development in which a certain skill or characterized would be most readily acquired

Usage Note

psychology's 21st Century Lexicon
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