From Middle English puberte, from Old French puberté, from Latin pūbertās (“the age of maturity, manhood”).
- (Received Pronunciation) IPA(key): /ˈpjuː.bə.ti/
Audio (Southern England) (file)
puberty (countable and uncountable, plural puberties)
- A developmental phase brought about by the action of hormones as part of the maturing process. For humans, there are three in total.
- 2014, Lewis Wolpert, Why Can't a Woman Be More Like a Man?, →ISBN:
- Girls undergoing puberty show an increase in the total output of cortisol, which is related to stress, while boys show little increase.
- (more common) The process of sexual development that produces secondary sex characteristics and makes a person capable of reproducing sexually.
- The age at which a person is first capable of sexual reproduction.
- 2009, The Development of Children Study Guide, →ISBN, page 241:
- As shown in Figure 14.4 of the textbook, children reach puberty at different ages in different countries; within those nations, children living in cities tend to reach puberty earlier than those living in rural areas.
- The period when a plant begins to flower.(The addition of quotations indicative of this usage is being sought:)
- (process of adolescence): thelarche, pubarche, growth spurt, menarche, gonadarche, adrenarche
age at which a person is first capable of sexual reproduction
- puberty in Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913
- puberty in The Century Dictionary, New York, N.Y.: The Century Co., 1911
- James A. H. Murray [et al.], editors (1884–1928), “Puberty”, in A New English Dictionary on Historical Principles (Oxford English Dictionary), volume VII (O–P), London: Clarendon Press, →OCLC, page 1557, column 3.