What does birthright mean?

Definitions for birthright

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word birthright.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. birthrightnoun

    a right or privilege that you are entitled to at birth

    "free public education is the birthright of every American child"

  2. birthright, patrimonynoun

    an inheritance coming by right of birth (especially by primogeniture)

  3. birthrightnoun

    personal characteristics that are inherited at birth


  1. birthrightnoun

    something owed since birth, due to inheritance.

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Birthrightnoun

    The rights and privileges to which a man is born; the right of the first born.

    Etymology: from birth and right.

    Thy blood and virtue
    Contend for empire in thee, and thy goodness
    Shares with thy birthright. William Shakespeare, All’s well that ends well.

    And hast been found
    By merit, more than birthright, Son of God. John Milton, Parad. Lost, b. iii. l. 308.

    I lov’d her first, I cannot quit the claim,
    But will preserve the birthright of my passion. Thomas Otway, Orph.

    While no baseness in this breast I find,
    I have not lost the birthright of my mind. John Dryden, Aurengz.

    To say, that liberty and property are the birthright of the English nation, but that if a prince invades them by illegal methods, we must upon no pretence resist, is to confound governments. Joseph Addison, Whig Examiner.


  1. Birthright

    Birthright is the concept of things being due to a person upon or by fact of their birth, or due to the order of their birth. These may include rights of citizenship based on the place where the person was born or the citizenship of their parents, and inheritance rights to property owned by parents or others. The concept of a birthright is ancient, and is often defined in part with concepts of both patriarchy and birth order. For example, "[t]hroughout the Bible the concept of a birthright is absolutely intertwined with the firstborn. That is, the firstborn inherits the birthright and has expectations of primogeniture", which historically referred to the right, by law or custom, of the firstborn legitimate child to inherit the parent's entire or main estate in preference to shared inheritance among all or some children, any illegitimate child or any collateral relative. In the seventeenth century, English activist John Lilburne used the term with respect to the rights of Englishmen "to connote all that is due to a citizen" of England, which "is claimed from English law to higher authorities". The term was similarly popularized in India by self-rule advocate Bal Gangadhar Tilak in the 1890s, when Tilak adopted the slogan coined by his associate Kaka Baptista: "Swaraj (self-rule) is my birthright and I shall have it." The term then "attained the status of a political slogan".In the context of the rights of citizenship, "[t]he term birthright signals not only that membership is acquired at birth or on grounds of birth, but also that membership is presumptively a lifelong status for the individual and continuous across generations for the citizenry as a collective". Birthright citizenship has long been a feature of English common law. Calvin's Case, was particularly important as it established that, under English common law, "a person's status was vested at birth, and based upon place of birth—a person born within the king's dominion owed allegiance to the sovereign, and in turn, was entitled to the king's protection." This same principle was accepted by the United States as being "ancient and fundamental", i.e., well-established common law, as stated by the Supreme Court in its 1898 interpretation of the Fourteenth Amendment to the United States Constitution in United States v. Wong Kim Ark: "the Fourteenth Amendment affirms the ancient and fundamental rule of citizenship by birth within the territory, in the allegiance and under the protection of the country, including all children here born of resident aliens, with the exceptions or qualifications (as old as the rule itself) of children of foreign sovereigns or their ministers, or born on foreign public ships, or of enemies within and during a hostile occupation of part of our territory, and with the single additional exception of children of members of the Indian tribes owing direct allegiance to their several tribes".The concept of birthright descending from participation in a particular culture is demonstrated in the Birthright Israel program, initiated in 1994. The program provides free trips to visit Israel to persons who have at least one parent of recognized Jewish descent, or who have converted to Judaism through a recognized Jewish movement, and who do not actively practice another religion. They must also be between the ages 18 to 32, post-high-school, have neither traveled to Israel before on a peer educational trip or study program past the age of 18 nor have lived in Israel past the age of 12.


  1. birthright

    A birthright is a right or privilege that a person is entitled to from birth or by lineage, often related to inheritance, rank, or personal, familial, or national privileges and prerogatives.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Birthrightnoun

    any right, privilege, or possession to which a person is entitled by birth, such as an estate descendible by law to an heir, or civil liberty under a free constitution; esp. the rights or inheritance of the first born


  1. Birthright

    The team finds a fugitive colony of Jaffa women, who must prey on other Jaffa to acquire symbiotes.

Matched Categories

How to pronounce birthright?

How to say birthright in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of birthright in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of birthright in Pythagorean Numerology is: 2

Examples of birthright in a Sentence

  1. Ted Cruz for what:

    So [Trump] recently came out against birthright citizenship, I've had that position for many years, back in 2011 when I was running for the U.S. Senate, i said very explicitly then, we should end birthright citizenship, and I still think that's the right position.

  2. Jessica Levinson:

    Trump thinks ‘our country is going to hell.’ Well, there is likely little more than a chance in hell that we are going to amend the Constitution, amending the Constitution is one of the most serious things that lawmakers can do. Therefore the path to doing it is rightfully arduous. I would put the chances … as beyond a longshot. To be sure, changing the Constitution, the supreme law of the land, would require a two-thirds vote in Congress, then ratification from three-fourths of state legislatures. It could also be changed through a constitutional convention in which at least 34 states convene to vote on an amendment, which would then need ratification from a minimum 38 states. Trump since announcing his candidacy in mid-June has made illegal immigrants from Mexico a top concern and has suggested several solutions -- including a wall along the southern border and the change to birthright citizenship.

  3. Oprah Winfrey, O Magazine:

    In every aspect of our lives, we are always asking ourselves, How am I of value? What is my worth? Yet I believe that worthiness is our birthright.

  4. Murty BVNS:

    Happiness is everybody's birthright

  5. Marco Rubio:

    When it comes to Ted, he has changed his position on immigration all over the place, i mean, he used to be against birthright citizens -- or he used to be for birthright citizenship; now he says he's against it.

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Translations for birthright

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"birthright." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 23 Sep. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/birthright>.

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    a blue dye obtained from plants or made synthetically
    • A. anil
    • B. dint
    • C. flair
    • D. crate

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