"with child," 1545, from L. prægnantem (nom. prægnans, originally prægnas) "with child," lit. "before birth," probably from præ- "before" + root of gnasci "be born." Used much earlier in Eng. in fig. senses (1413); the late record probably reflects its status as a taboo word,
which it somewhat retained until c.1950; modern euphemisms include anticipating, enceinte, expecting, in a family way, in a delicate (or interesting) condition. Slang preggers is recorded from 1942. O.E. terms included mid-bearne, lit. "with child;" bearn-eaca, lit. "child-adding" or "child-increasing;" and geacnod "increased." Among c.1800 slang terms for "pregnant" were poisoned (in ref. to the swelling).