Since twins weigh about 20% less than singletons at birth, maternal smoking may be a more severe risk for them than for singletons. Therefore, the effect of maternal smoking during pregnancy on birth weight was investigated in a group of 5376 twins. All necessary information was collected by a questionnaire filled out by the mother of the twins. Gestational age explains more than 75% of the variance in birth weight. Other effects were tested with gestational age as a covariate. Apart from zygosity (DZ twins weigh more than MZ twins), birth order (first born twins weigh more than second born twins) and sex (boys weigh more than girls), there was a very significant birth weight reducing effect (more than 8%) maternal smoking as well as a significant influence of maternal age (young mothers give birth to smaller children). There were no interactions with maternal smoking. © 1994.