Word Pairs


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We all know what twins and triplets are. Most of us are [familial / familiar] with the terms quadruplets and quintuplets. But what is the word to [describe / ascribe] nine babies being born [to / at] the same time? The answer is... nonuplets. A 25-year-old Malian woman, Halima Cisse, has given [birthing / birth] to nine healthy babies. This is a new record. The [impervious / previous] record was by a woman in the US who delivered eight babies (octuplets) at a single birth. People in Mali were [avidly / vividly] following the progress of Ms Cisse's pregnancy and she was inundated [to / with] well wishes. Malians were not the only [one / ones] who were pleasantly surprised when doctors announced the nonuplets. Ms Cisse was [told / announced] she was only carrying seven babies (septuplets) [after / followed] having scans.

Ms Cisse's husband told the BBC that she is [in / on] good health and that the babies (five boys and four girls) were doing [well / good] . Fanta Siby, Mali's health minister, congratulated the couple [in / on] the "happy outcome". He also [praised / prised] medical teams in Morocco, which is where Ms Cisse gave birth. He also [thanked / pleased] Mali's president for the "political leadership and [generous / generosity] " which "expedited" support for Halima. The [outcome / income] is wonderful news as it was a little touch-and-go in the [fast / early] stages of the pregnancy. Gynecologists in Mali were concerned about Ms Cisse's welfare and the chances of her babies' survival. They [ought / sought] the help of the hospital in Morocco where they believed she would receive better [pro- / pre-] and postnatal care.

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