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[adjective, noun pree-fab; verb pree-fab] /adjective, noun ˈpriˌfæb; verb priˈfæb/
something that is prefabricated, as a building or fixture:
You would never know that such an attractive house is a prefab.
verb (used with object), prefabbed, prefabbing.
to prefabricate.
Origin of prefab
1935-40; by shortening Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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Examples from the Web for prefab
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Jack Holloway landed the manipulator in front of the cluster of prefab huts.

    Little Fuzzy Henry Beam Piper
  • The first inarticulate roar was followed by a babel of voices, like a tropical cloudburst on a prefab hut.

    A Slave is a Slave Henry Beam Piper
  • Mryna thought there might be one man living in a kind of prefab somehow suspended above the rain mist.

    The Guardians Irving Cox
  • At once she went on a feminine exploring expedition of the prefab's interior, and its new, gleaming appointments.

    The Planet Strappers Raymond Zinke Gallun
  • The walls are prefab plastic sheet, the rest is standard fittings slung in and bolted down with the fastenings showing.

    The Lost Kafoozalum Pauline Ashwell
British Dictionary definitions for prefab


  1. a building that is prefabricated, esp a small house
  2. (as modifier): a prefab house
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 prefab

1937, short for prefabricated (see prefabricate). As a noun, "prefabricated housing," from 1942.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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Related Abbreviations for prefab


The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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