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prevail

[pri-veyl]
verb (used without object)
  1. to be widespread or current; exist everywhere or generally: Silence prevailed along the funeral route.
  2. to appear or occur as the more important or frequent feature or element; predominate: Green tints prevail in the upholstery.
  3. to be or prove superior in strength, power, or influence (usually followed by over): They prevailed over their enemies in the battle.
  4. to succeed; become dominant; win out: to wish that the right side might prevail.
  5. to use persuasion or inducement successfully: He prevailed upon us to accompany him.
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Origin of prevail

1350–1400; Middle English prevayllen to grow very strong < Latin praevalēre to be more able, equivalent to prae- pre- + valēre to be strong; see prevalent
Related formspre·vail·er, noun

Synonyms

Antonyms

3. lose.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

British Dictionary definitions for prevailer

prevail

verb (intr)
  1. (often foll by over or against) to prove superior; gain masteryskill will prevail
  2. to be or appear as the most important feature; be prevalent
  3. to exist widely; be in force
  4. (often foll by on or upon) to succeed in persuading or inducing
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Derived Formsprevailer, noun

Word Origin

C14: from Latin praevalēre to be superior in strength, from prae beyond + valēre to be strong
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

Word Origin and History for prevailer

prevail

v.

c.1400, "be successful; be efficacious," from Old French prevaleir (Modern French prévaloir) and directly from Latin praevalere "be stronger, have greater power," from prae "before" (see pre-) + valere "have power, be strong" (see valiant). Spelling in English perhaps influenced by avail. Related: Prevailed; prevailing.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper