Most children born to a single woman?

What’s the largest number of children born to a single woman? I remember reading something about a Russian woman having 69 kids, but that can’t be right (or can it :confused: ).

Yes, it can. I do believe it’s in Guiness. None of the children were single births of course and a number of the pregnancies were triplet and quadruplet. I think the mother married at fourteen or fifteen and probably stayed fertile until her late forties.


I remember reading that entry in the Guinness Book too when I was a child. I didn’t believe it.

When I first read this, I thought, “Uh, aren’t ALL children born to a single woman? It’s not like the baby could gestate in two wombs at once…”

I must be tired.

If she married at 14 or 15, she wasn’t a single woman - so that rules her out! Boom boom!


My office once got a phone call from a single women with 10 kids looking for an apartment. She’d never been married.

The mind boggles.

The most recent Guinness Book of Records I possess is for 1991.

This edition confirms the story of the Russian woman, as follows:

The greatest officially recorded number of children born to one mother is 69 by the first of the two wives of Feodor Vassilyev (b. 1707), a peasant from Shuya, 241km east of Moscow. In 27 confinements she gave birth to 16 pairs of twins, 7 sets of triplets and 4 sets of quadruplets. The case was reported by the Monastery of Mikolskiy on 27 February 1782 to Moscow. At least 67 survived infancy and were born in the period 1725-65.

Presumably Feodor married his second wife because he wore the first one out.

It’s interesting that a) her name is not known, and b) there were no single confinements.

My first thought was “What the hell fertility pills has she been taking???”


We’re talking three hundred years ago, which automatically sets the skepticism meter to ticking feverishly. Particularly since the first report was decades after the fact. There’s no freaking way that woman could have produced four sets of quadruplets in that day and age and have basically all of the babies survive infancy. 67 out of 69 total survivals? What are the odds? Somebody was having their fun at the expense of the Monastery of Mikolskiy.