Posthumous birth is the birth of a child after a biological parent is dead. Such a child is referred to as a posthumous child or posthumously born person. It is usually after the death of a father, but sometimes a baby survives the death of its mother.
Popular figures who are posthumous children include Muhammad (Prophet of Islam), Isaac Newton (English scientist), and Bill Clinton (President of the United States).
The term originally referred to children who are conceived after both parents have intercourse, but one dies before the birth of the child. However, with modern science, there are new developments. Now, conception is possible even when a parent dies. Thanks to modern science.
This process is termed posthumous conception for further categorising. This is achievable by artificial insemination or in vitro fertilization (IVF). Using either the sperm or ova stored by a parent before death. Meaning, the father or mother of this kind of child could be dead.
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In popular cases, the sperm is extracted from the corpse of the father.
Insemination involves inserting extracted sperm into a woman for fertilization and other necessary processes.
The term “in vitro” means “in glass“ or laboratory. And the sperm and ova unite outside the human body. After between 2-6 days, the fertilized egg called zygote must have undergone embryo culture. Then it is reinserted in a woman (sometimes not the same woman) for a normal pregnancy.
Louise Brown is the first person born with IVF in 1978, although both her parents were alive at the time.
Posthumous conception comes with lots of legal problems, much more than comes with posthumous birth. The issues surround the question of if the child qualifies for paternity, inheritance, and benefits.
Despite sharing preceding terms, posthumous conception is different from posthumous birth. Recently, stories of soldiers who died in battle having posthumous children have become popular.
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