pre-dawn (adj.) Look up pre-dawn at Dictionary.com
1940, from pre- + dawn (n.).
pre-eclampsia (n.) Look up pre-eclampsia at Dictionary.com
also preeclampsia, 1903, from pre- + eclampsia. Related: Pre-eclamptic (1896).
pre-elect (v.) Look up pre-elect at Dictionary.com
1560s, from pre- + elect (v.). Related: Pre-elected; pre-electing.
pre-election (n.) Look up pre-election at Dictionary.com
1580s, from pre- + election.
pre-electric (adj.) Look up pre-electric at Dictionary.com
1894, from pre- + electric.
pre-eminence (n.) Look up pre-eminence at Dictionary.com
also pre-eminence, c. 1200, from Late Latin praeeminentia "distinction, superiority," from Latin praeeminentem (nominative praeeminens), present participle of praeeminere "transcend, excel," literally "project forward, rise above," from prae "before" (see pre-) + eminere "stand out, project" (see eminent).
pre-eminent (adj.) Look up pre-eminent at Dictionary.com
also preeminent, mid-15c., from Medieval Latin preeminentem, from Latin praeeminentem (nominative praeeminens), present participle of praeeminare "to transcend, excel," literally "to project forward, rise above" (see pre-eminence). Related: Pre-eminently; preeminently.
pre-empt (v.) Look up pre-empt at Dictionary.com
also preempt, 1830, "secure by pre-emtion," back-formation from pre-emption, originally American English. In the broascasting sense, it is attested from 1965, American English, a euphemism for "cancel." Related: pre-empted; preempted.
pre-emption (n.) Look up pre-emption at Dictionary.com
also preemption, c. 1600, literally "the right of purchasing before others," from pre- "before" + emption.
pre-emptive (adj.) Look up pre-emptive at Dictionary.com
also preemptive, 1806, "pertaining to preemption;" from pre-emption + -ive. Specifically of an attack on an enemy who is plotting his own attack, 1958, a term from the Cold War. Related: Pre-emptively; preemptively.
pre-emptory (adj.) Look up pre-emptory at Dictionary.com
also preemptory, 1822, "relating to pre-emption," from pre-emption + -ory.
pre-engage (v.) Look up pre-engage at Dictionary.com
"bind in advance by promise," 1640s, from pre- + engage (v.). Related: Pre-engaged; pre-engaging.
pre-exist (v.) Look up pre-exist at Dictionary.com
1590s, from pre- + exist. Related: Pre-existed; pre-existing.
pre-existence (n.) Look up pre-existence at Dictionary.com
1650s, from pre- + existence.
pre-existing (adj.) Look up pre-existing at Dictionary.com
also preexisting, 1590s, past participle adjective from pre-exist. The medical insurance pre-existing condition is attested from 1942.
pre-law (adj.) Look up pre-law at Dictionary.com
"of or pertaining to study in preparation for law school," 1961, American English, from pre- + law (school).
pre-med (n.) Look up pre-med at Dictionary.com
"undergraduate student in preparation for medical school," 1934, from premedical. From 1941 as "a major in preparation for medical training." As an adjective from 1936.
pre-op (n.) Look up pre-op at Dictionary.com
1913 as short for pre-operative (preparation).
pre-order (v.) Look up pre-order at Dictionary.com
1630s, from pre- + order (v.). Marked in OED 2nd ed. as "rare." Related: Pre-ordered; pre-ordering.
pre-owned (adj.) Look up pre-owned at Dictionary.com
1961, American English, from pre- + owned. A euphemism for used.
pre-position (v.) Look up pre-position at Dictionary.com
"to position beforehand," 1946, from pre- + position (v.). Related: Pre-positioned; pre-positioning.
Pre-Raphaelite (n., adj.) Look up Pre-Raphaelite at Dictionary.com
c. 1848, in reference to the "brotherhood" (founded 1847) of Holman Hunt, Dante Gabriel Rossetti, John Everett Millais, and others (seven in all) who, encouraged by Ruskin, sought to revive the naturalistic spirit of art in the age before Raphael Sanzio (1483-1520).
pre-record (v.) Look up pre-record at Dictionary.com
1937, from pre- + record (v.). Related: Pre-recorded; pre-recording.
pre-registration (n.) Look up pre-registration at Dictionary.com
also preregistration, 1901, from pre- + registration.
pre-release (adj.) Look up pre-release at Dictionary.com
1916, in reference to motion pictures, from pre- + release (n.).
pre-teen (adj.) Look up pre-teen at Dictionary.com
also preteen, 1926, from pre- + teen. As a noun, "pre-teen person," from 1962. Sub-teen (1944) also was used.
preach (v.) Look up preach at Dictionary.com
at first in late Old English predician, a loan word from Church Latin; reborrowed 12c. as preachen, from Old French preechier "to preach, give a sermon" (11c., Modern French précher), from Late Latin praedicare "to proclaim publicly, announce" (in Medieval Latin "to preach"), from Latin prae "before" (see pre-) + dicare "to proclaim, to say" (see diction). Related: Preached; preaching. To preach to the converted is recorded from 1867 (form preach to the choir attested from 1979).
preacher (n.) Look up preacher at Dictionary.com
c. 1200, from Old French preecheor "preacher" (Modern French prêcheur), from Latin praedicatorem (nominative praedicator) "public praiser, eulogist," literally "proclaimer" (see preach). Slang short form preach (n.) is recorded by 1968, American English.
preachment (n.) Look up preachment at Dictionary.com
late 14c., "a preaching;" earlier "an annoying or tedious speech" (c. 1300); see preach (v.) + -ment. Related: Preachments.
preachy (adj.) Look up preachy at Dictionary.com
1819, from preach + -y (2). Related: Preachiness.
preamble (n.) Look up preamble at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Old French preambule (13c.) and directly from Medieval Latin preambulum, neuter adjective used as a noun, properly "preliminary," from Late Latin praeambulus "walking before," from Latin prae- "before" (see pre-) + ambulare "to walk" (see amble (v.)).
preamplifier (n.) Look up preamplifier at Dictionary.com
1929, from pre- + amplifier. Shortened form pre-amp is attested from 1957.
preassembly (n.) Look up preassembly at Dictionary.com
1921, from pre- + assembly.
prebend (n.) Look up prebend at Dictionary.com
early 15c., from Old French prebende, earlier provende (12c.) and directly from Medieval Latin prebenda "allowance," from Late Latin praebenda "allowance, pension" (see provender). Related: Prebendary.
Precambrian (adj.) Look up Precambrian at Dictionary.com
also Pre-Cambrian, 1861, from pre- + Cambrian.
precarious (adj.) Look up precarious at Dictionary.com
1640s, a legal word, "held through the favor of another," from Latin precarius "obtained by asking or praying," from prex (genitive precis) "entreaty, prayer" (see pray). Notion of "dependent on the will of another" led to extended sense "risky, dangerous, uncertain" (1680s). "No word is more unskillfully used than this with its derivatives. It is used for uncertain in all its senses; but it only means uncertain, as dependent on others ..." [Johnson]. Related: Precariously; precariousness.
precatory (adj.) Look up precatory at Dictionary.com
1630s, from Late Latin precatorius "pertaining to petitioning," from precatorem "one who prays," agent noun from precari "to pray" (see pray).
precaution (n.) Look up precaution at Dictionary.com
c. 1600, from French précaution (16c.) and directly from Late Latin praecautionem (nominative praecautio) "a safeguarding," from past participle stem of Latin praecavere "to guard against beforehand," from prae "before" (see pre-) + cavere "to be one's own guard" (see caution (n.)). The verb meaning "to warn (someone) in advance" is from c. 1700.
precautionary (adj.) Look up precautionary at Dictionary.com
1720, from precaution + -ary.
precautious (adj.) Look up precautious at Dictionary.com
1680s, from precaution + -ous. Related: Precautiously; precautiousness.
precede (v.) Look up precede at Dictionary.com
early 15c., "lead the way; occur before," from Middle French preceder and directly from Latin praecedere "to go before," from prae "before" (see pre-) + cedere "to go" (see cede). Meaning "to walk in front of" is late 15c.; that of "to go before in rank or importance" is attested from mid-15c. Related: Preceded; preceding.
precedence (n.) Look up precedence at Dictionary.com
late 15c., "a being a precedent," from precedent (n.) + -ence. Meaning "fact of preceding another, right of preceding another" is from c. 1600.
precedent (n.) Look up precedent at Dictionary.com
early 15c., "case which may be taken as a rule in similar cases," from Middle French precedent, noun use of an adjective, from Latin praecedentum (nominative praecedens), present participle of praecedere "go before" (see precede). Meaning "thing or person that goes before another" is attested from mid-15c. As an adjective in English from c. 1400. As a verb meaning "to furnish with a precedent" from 1610s, now only in past participle precedented.
precedented (adj.) Look up precedented at Dictionary.com
1650s, past participle adjective from precedent, which is attested as a verb from 1610s.
precent (v.) Look up precent at Dictionary.com
"to lead others in singing," 1732, from Latin praecantare "to sing before," or a back-formation from precentor.
precentor (n.) Look up precentor at Dictionary.com
1610s, from Late Latin praecentor "a leader in singing," from Latin praecantare "to sing before," from prae "before" (see pre-) + canere "to sing" (see chant (v.)). For change of vowel, see biennial.
precept (n.) Look up precept at Dictionary.com
late 14c., from Old French percept, percet (12c.), from Latin praeceptum "maxim, rule of conduct, order," noun use of neuter past participle of praecipere "give rules to, order, advise," literally "take beforehand," from prae "before" (see pre-) + capere (past participle captus) "to take," from PIE root *kap- "to grasp" (see capable). For change of vowel, see biennial.
preception (n.) Look up preception at Dictionary.com
1610s, from Latin praeceptionem (nominative praeceptio) "a previous notion, preconception," literally "a taking beforehand," noun of action from past participle stem of praecipere (see precept).
preceptor (n.) Look up preceptor at Dictionary.com
early 15c., "tutor, instructor" (earliest reference might be to "expert in the art of writing"), from Latin praeceptor "teacher, instructor," agent noun from praecipere (see precept). Medical training sense attested from 1803.
preceptorship (n.) Look up preceptorship at Dictionary.com
1764, from preceptor + -ship.