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gestate (verb) (of a child or the young of an animal) the process of developing in mother's womb before birth; (of an idea or a plan) in the process of developing.
Experts say that it takes fourteen years for the germ causing leprosy to gestate. That is, once the germ enters the human body, it develops to its full form only in fourteen years, and then only its effects are seen on the victim. A human baby takes about nine months to gestate, that is, it grows for about nine months in its mother's womb before it is delivered. An idea, a scheme, a project etc., starts developing in a person's mind when it gestates. During the period it gestates in, it gradually grows in their mind until it takes some definite form and is made public. A project gestates if it is still in the process of being planned and shaped by the experts concerned.
- Different animals take different periods to gestate. The larger the size of the animal the longer its young one takes to grow in its mother's womb and is littered.
- The design and estimate of the dam gestated for two years before it was given a concrete shape.