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or pre-eminent

[pree-em-uh-nuh nt] /priˈɛm ə nənt/
eminent above or before others; superior; surpassing:
He is preeminent in his profession.
Origin of preeminent
late Middle English
1400-50; late Middle English < Latin praeēminent- (stem of praeēminēns), present participle of praeēminēre to project forward, be prominent. See pre-, eminent
Related forms
preeminently, adverb
distinguished, peerless, supreme.
Synonym Study
See dominant. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for pre-eminent
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • He has been pre-eminent in the establishment and development of institutions.

  • She was pre-eminent in courage and military skill, and was the leader of the Hellenes.

    Timaeus Plato
  • The eleventh chapter of the Hebrews is a pre-eminent Scripture.

  • Words like "pre-eminent," divided for the same reason, have already been noted.


    Paul Allardyce
  • They would remain the great, pre-eminent centre of national authority.

    Home Rule Harold Spender
British Dictionary definitions for pre-eminent


extremely eminent or distinguished; outstanding
Derived Forms
pre-eminence, noun
pre-eminently, adverb
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for pre-eminent

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.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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