- a person who is among those who first enter or settle a region, thus opening it for occupation and development by others.
- one who is first or among the earliest in any field of inquiry, enterprise, or progress: pioneers in cancer research.
- one of a group of foot soldiers detailed to make roads, dig intrenchments, etc., in advance of the main body.
- Ecology. an organism that successfully establishes itself in a barren area, thus starting an ecological cycle of life.
- (initial capital letter) Aerospace. one of a series of U.S. space probes that explored the solar system and transmitted scientific information to earth.
- (initial capital letter) (formerly) a member of a Communist organization in the Soviet Union for children ranging in age from 10 to 16.Compare Komsomol, Octobrist.
- to act as a pioneer.
- to be the first to open or prepare (a way, settlement, etc.).
- to take part in the beginnings of; initiate: to pioneer an aid program.
- to lead the way for (a group); guide.
- being the earliest, original, first of a particular kind, etc.: a pioneer method of adult education.
- of, relating to, or characteristic of pioneers: pioneer justice.
- being a pioneer: a pioneer fur trader.
Origin of pioneer
SynonymsSee more synonyms on Thesaurus.com
Examples from the Web for pioneer
Peter Christopherson made the leap to life on the bandstand and became a pioneer in the industrial music genre.The Golden Age of Rock Album Covers
December 5, 2014
His great-grandfather, David Yellin, was a prominent Zionist scholar and Israeli pioneer.
The first pioneer to reach the riparian tributary where Kansas City now shimmers was, in fact, on the lam himself.Those Kansas City Blues: A Family History
October 24, 2014
So how did a popular magazine that was considered a pioneer of the genre end up getting left in the dust?It Was All a Dream: Drama, Bullshit, and the Rebirth of The Source Magazine
October 14, 2014
The video became a hit, and it led Boenish to pioneer a new type of diving—BASE.The High-Flying Secrets of BASE Jumpers
August 4, 2014
The pastoral interest is the pioneer interest of a new colony.Explorations in Australia
A pioneer is a brave fellow, with the courage of his own curiosity.Ancient Man
Hendrik Willem van Loon
Mr. Gladstone may be regarded as the pioneer of the movement.The Grand Old Man
Richard B. Cook
Why, he had promised me that I should have pioneer's rights in the realm of beauty.The Bacillus of Beauty
He wanted to be a pioneer only in financial paths; and after all, this was our mountain now.It Happened in Egypt
C. N. Williamson
- a colonist, explorer, or settler of a new land, region, etc
- (as modifier)a pioneer wagon
- an innovator or developer of something new
- military a member of an infantry group that digs entrenchments, makes roads, etc
- ecology the first species of plant or animal to colonize an area of bare ground
- to be a pioneer (in or of)
- (tr) to initiate, prepare, or open upto pioneer a medical programme
- a total abstainer from alcoholic drink, esp a member of the Pioneer Total Abstinence Association, a society devoted to abstention
- any of a series of US spacecraft that studied the solar system, esp Pioneer 10, which made the first flyby of Jupiter (1973), and Pioneer 11, which made the first flyby of Saturn (1979)
Word Origin and History for pioneer
1520s, "foot soldier who prepares the way for the army," from Middle French pionnier "foot-soldier, pioneer," from Old French paonier "foot-soldier" (11c.), from peon (see pawn (n.2)). Figurative sense of "person who goes first or does something first" is from c.1600. Related: Pioneers.
1780, from pioneer (n.). Related: Pioneered; pioneering.