incunabulum definition by American Heritage Dictionary
noun pl. in·cu·nab·u·la
- A book printed before 1501; an incunable.
- An artifact of an early period.
Origin: New Latin incūnābulum, from sing. of Latin incūnābula, swaddling clothes, cradle : in-, in; see in-2 + cūnābula, cradle, infancy (from cūnae, cradle; see kei-1 in Indo-European roots).
- inˌcu·nabˈu·lar adjective
Variant of incunabula
- the very first stages of anything; infancy; beginnings
- early printed books; esp., books printed before 1500
Origin: Classical Latin neuter plural , swaddling clothes, cradle origin ; from in-, in plush cunabula, neuter plural , a cradle, diminutive of cunae, feminine plural , a cradle ; from Indo-European an unverified form oinā, bed ; from base an unverified form kei-, to lie down from source home
- incunabular adjective