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By superfoetation is meant the conception, by a woman already pregnant,

of a second embryo, resulting in the birth of two children at the same

time, differing much in their degree of maturity, or in two separate

births, with a considerable interval between. The possibility of the

occurrence of superfoetation has been doubted, but there are

well-authenticated cases which countenance the theory of a double

conception. It has been shown that the os uteri is not closed, as was

once supposed, immediately on conception. Should an ovum escape into

the uterus, it may become impregnated a month or so after a previous

conception. The most probable explanation is that the case has been one

of twins, one being born prematurely; or, on the other hand, the uterus

may have been double, and conception may have taken place in one cornu

at a later period than in the other cornu.