at first

Initially, at the start, as in At first the berries were green, but when they ripened they turned bright red. [Second half of 1500s]


Nearby words

  1. at each other's throats,
  2. at ease,
  3. at every turn,
  4. at face value, take,
  5. at fault,
  6. at first blush,
  7. at first hand,
  8. at full tilt,
  9. at gunpoint,
  10. at half-mast

The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company.

Examples from the Web for at first

  • Even Mr. Seward, cautious and conservative diplomat as he was, at-first "opposed any concession or surrender of the prisoners."