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From the lack of clothes worn when one is born.


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birthday suit (plural birthday suits)

  1. Used other than with a figurative or idiomatic meaning: see birthday,‎ suit.
  2. (idiomatic, often humorous) Nakedness, unclothed skin; an exposure of a human's natural anatomy without clothing.
    George embarrassed his aunt by answering the door in his birthday suit.
    • 1842, H., “Short Rides in an Author's Omnibus”, in Thomas Hood, editor, The New Monthly Magazine and Humorist, page 267:
      Nature, the universal tailor, provides for every other animal a birthday suit of clothes which is to outlast his life; but man, though so peculiarly sensitive to the assaults of the elements, is ushered into this nether sphere without any covering, in order that he may be compelled to exert his faculties, and become his own tailor, and thereby his own civilizer.
    • 1998, Paul Vaughn, “Confessions of a Naked Writer”, in Orange Coast, page 185:
      At last I'm down to the nitty-gritty, my original birthday suit. Where do I put my hands? I need pockets.
    • 2000, Denis Charles Phillips, The Expanded Social Scientist's Bestiary: A Guide to Fabled Threats to, and Defenses of, Naturalistic Social Science, page 85:
      The terms naturalistic and naturalism suffer from the fact that they have a range of meanings, covering a variety of things from the Romantic submission to nature or the collecting of butterflies to the practice of bathing on the beach clad only in one's birthday suit.
    • 2001, Tom Slattery, Immodest Proposals: Through the Pornographic Looking Glass, page 181:
      A person suddenly caught naked by the collapse of a building wall is treated quite differently than a person who intentionally “streaks” a public gathering in his or her birthday suit.

Usage notesEdit

  • Usually used in the phrase “in one’s birthday suit”, but sometimes seen alone; for example, as in “Guess what she was wearing? Her birthday suit!”


Derived termsEdit