Definition of diaper in English:


Syllabification: dia·per
Pronunciation: /ˈdī(ə)pər


  • 1North American A piece of absorbent material wrapped around a baby’s bottom and between its legs to absorb and retain urine and feces.
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    • Leave baby's diaper off for a few minutes and let the bottom air-dry.
    • Some parents sew a pocket in the seat of their child's pants and pad it with a piece of diaper.
    • Clean you baby's bottom with every diaper change
  • 2A linen or cotton fabric woven in a repeating pattern of small diamonds.
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    • Did you know that the word diaper is the name of the type of linen used to make what was then called a napkin or clout for a baby?
  • 2.1A repeating geometric or floral pattern used to decorate a surface.
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    • The gods and goddesses are overlarge for the spaces they occupy and rest somewhat uncertainly on plinths made up of diaper pattern.
    • The college buildings, of red brick with blue diaper patterning, are grouped around two courtyards.
    • Its decoration consists of incised lines forming a diaper pattern, interspersed with a punched design of tiny triangular forms arranged like the petals of a flower.


[with object] Back to top  
  • 1North American Put a diaper on (a baby).
    More example sentences
    • Meanwhile, the baby was checked, weighed, and diapered.
    • I'm currently reading: ‘The Trixie Update,’ a website kept by a stay at home dad chronicling the feeding, diapering, and sleeping habits of his kid.
    • These classes help prepare teens for the practical side of parenthood by teaching such skills as feeding, diapering, child safety, and other basic baby care techniques.
  • 2Decorate (a surface) with a repeating geometric or floral pattern.
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    • The dating of the border, with its pale blue relief diapering, is interesting, since it indicates when this variation of the famille verte genre was popular.


Middle English: from Old French diapre, from medieval Latin diasprum, from medieval Greek diaspros (adjective), from dia 'across' + aspros 'white'. The term seems originally to have denoted a costly fabric, but after the 15th century it was used in sense 2 of the noun; babies' diapers were originally made from pieces of this fabric, hence sense 1 of the noun (late 16th century).

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