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swaddling clothes

plural noun
1.
clothes consisting of long, narrow strips of cloth for swaddling an infant.
2.
long garments for an infant.
3.
the period of infancy or immaturity, as of a person, or incipience, as of a thing:
Nuclear energy is still in its swaddling clothes.
4.
rigid supervision or restriction of actions or movements, as of the immature:
new nations that are freeing themselves of their swaddling clothes.
Also called swaddling bands (for defs 1, 2).
Origin of swaddling clothes
1525-1535
1525-35
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for swaddling-bands
Historical Examples
  • He rises girt in the swaddling-bands of the tomb, once more to walk in the light of the living.

    Memories of Bethany John Ross Macduff
  • The helplessness of the French infant in its swaddling-bands means the liberty of the nurse—that is the whole explanation.

    Letters of Two Brides Honore de Balzac
  • I myself was thought beautiful by the women at one time—when I was in my swaddling-bands.

    Romola George Eliot
  • He tosses them aside as the swaddling-bands of the Church's infancy—childish fetters, too weak to hold the limbs of grown men.

  • The art of advertising being then in its swaddling-bands, this specimen of it struck its hearers as really creditable.

    Gideon's Band George W. Cable
  • Lay aside the swaddling-bands of your imperfections, conform your lives to the highest ideals of uprightness and truth.

  • Since the time was ripe, Wahaska did presently burst its swaddling-bands.

    The Price Francis Lynde
British Dictionary definitions for swaddling-bands

swaddling clothes

plural noun
1.
long strips of linen or other cloth formerly wrapped round a newly born baby
2.
restrictions or supervision imposed on the immature
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Difficulty index for swaddling clothes

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Word Value for swaddling

15
18
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Nearby words for swaddling-bands