DZ Parents VIIIA parent is a caretaker of the offspring in their own species. In humans, a parent is of a child (where “child” refers to offspring, not necessarily age). A biological parent consists of a person whose gamete resulted in a child, a male through his sperm, and a woman through her ovum. Parents are first-degree relatives and have 50% genetic overlap. A woman can also become a parent through surrogacy. However, some parents may not be biologically related to their children. An adoptive parent is one who nurtures and raises the offspring of the biological parents but is not actually biologically related to the child. Children without adoptive parents can be raised by their grandparents or other family members.

A parent can also be elaborated as an ancestor removed one generation. With recent medical advances, it is possible to have more than two biological parents.


A mother is a woman who has conceived, given birth to, or raised a child in the role of a parent. Because of the complexity and differences of a mother’s social, cultural, and religious definitions and roles, it is challenging to define a mother to suit a universally accepted definition. The male equivalent is a father.

A father is defined as a male parent of any type of offspring. The adjective “paternal” refers to father, parallel to “maternal” for mother. The verb “to father” means to procreate or to sire a child from which also derives the gerund “fathering”.

Grandparents are the parents of a person’s own parent, whether that be a father or a mother. Every sexually reproducing creature who is not a genetic chimera has a maximum of four genetic grandparents, eight genetic great-grandparents, sixteen genetic great-great-grandparents, etc. Rarely, such as in the case of sibling or half-sibling incest, these numbers are lower.

DZ Parents VIIpar·ent – [pair-uh nt, par-] – /ˈpɛər ənt, ˈpær-/
1. a father or a mother.
2. an ancestor, precursor, or progenitor.
3. a source, origin, or cause.
4. a protector or guardian.
5. Biology. any organism that produces or generates another.
6. Physics. the first nuclide in a radioactive series.

7. being the original source: a parent organization.
8. Biology. pertaining to an organism, cell, or complex molecular structure that generates or produces another: parent cell; parent DNA.

Verb (used with object):
9. to be or act as parent of: to parent children with both love and discipline.

1375-1425; late Middle English (< Middle French) < Latin parent- (stem of parēns), noun use of present participle of parere to bring forth, breed

Word Origin and History For Parent:
Early 15c. (late 12c. as a surname), from Old French parent “father, parent, relative, kin” (11c.), from Latin parentem (nominative parens) “father or mother, ancestor,” noun use of present participle of parere “bring forth, give birth to, produce,” from PIE root *pere- “to bring forth” (see pare ). Began to replace native elder after c.1500.

1660s, from parent (n.). Related: Parented ; parenting.