Crib / Cradle

  • Havfruen

    Senior Member
    English - American
    A cradle rocks, a crib is fixed. A cradle is for a very young infant, a crib is for a small child up to 2-3 years old.


    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    To explain a little more, a crib is a bed that is usually elevated on long legs (to make it easier for adults to put the child in and take it out) that has bars (or sometimes netting) on the sides so that the child cannot fall or climb out. Here is a picture of one.

    A cradle is usually lower is shaped like a basket. An essential feature of a cradle is that it can be rocked from side to side. If it doesn't rock, it isn't a cradle. Here is a picture of one that is fairly traditional. There are more modern designs, as well.


    Lapsed Moderator
    English-Ireland (top end)
    There is an AE/BE point to be made here - see cot.
    The AE crib is a BE cot.
    A BE cot is a rectangular bed with bars - suitable for kids up to ~3 if you're lucky.
    A BE crib is more or less equivalent to a BE cradle.

    For more clarification on BE usage, here are some examples:
    Cribs and Moses Baskets


    Moderato con anima (English Only)
    English (Singapore/UK), basic Chinese
    To muddy the waters, cot in older BE can also refer to a narrow bed. (I discovered this through talking to a speaker of Indian English.)

    When the children were little we had Moses baskets (which would be a kind of cradle), before moving into cots. We also had carry cots which are really more like cradles than cots.


    Hebrew-US English (bilingual)
    Well, if we're going on about cots, I guess someone should add that a cot in AE is a small, low bed, often one that can be folded up for storage. This is an example of a camping cot and this is a folding guest cot.
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