• synonyms


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  1. coming or occurring before something else; prior: the previous owner.
  2. Informal. done, occurring, etc., before the proper time; premature: Aren't you a little previous with that request?
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  1. previous to, before; prior to: Previous to moving here she lived in Chicago.
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Origin of previous

1615–25; < Latin praevius going before, equivalent to prae- pre- + vi(a) way + -us adj. suffix
Related formspre·vi·ous·ly, adverbpre·vi·ous·ness, noun


See more synonyms for on Thesaurus.com
1. earlier, former, preceding, foregoing.
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words

then, already, formerly, heretofore, once, hitherto, antecedently, ahead, ante, back, before, beforehand, erstwhile, fore, forward, one-shot

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British Dictionary definitions for previously


  1. (prenominal) existing or coming before something else in time or position; prior
  2. (postpositive) informal taking place or done too soon; premature
  3. previous to before; prior to
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Derived Formspreviously, adverbpreviousness, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Latin praevius leading the way, from prae before + via way
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 previously



1620s, from Latin praevius "going before," from prae "before" (see pre-) + via "road" (see via). Related: Previously.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper