- prime number.
- one of the equal parts into which a unit is primarily divided.
- the mark (′) indicating such a division: a, a′.
- unison(def 2).
- (in a scale) the tonic or keynote.
verb (used with object), primed, prim·ing.
verb (used without object), primed, prim·ing.
Origin of prime
Synonyms for prime
Related Words for primeheyday, pink, verdure, flower, vitality, prize, zenith, best, spring, top, elite, fat, choice, maturity, peak, flowering, height, bloom, perfection, cream
Examples from the Web for prime
Contemporary Examples of prime
Domestically, the prime minister maintains the dubious line that he is the only man who can keep the still-fragile peace.Cambodia’s Smoke-and-Mirrors Democracy
January 9, 2015
Hamish Marshall himself is a former staffer of Prime Minister Harper.How Canadian Oilmen Pinkwash the Keystone Pipeline
December 28, 2014
Castro actually flew up to Montreal to be a pallbearer at the 2000 funeral of a beloved Canadian Prime Minister, Pierre Trudeau.Canada ♥ Cuba Just Got Complicated
December 22, 2014
A prime example: your “real name” policy, which unfairly targeted the LGBTQ community.10 Things That Made Us Want to Turn Off the Internet Forever in 2014
The Daily Beast
December 15, 2014
When they were working together, 35 years ago, she was in her prime and one of the most beautiful women in the world.Alfred Hitchcock’s Fade to Black: The Great Director’s Final Days
December 13, 2014
Historical Examples of prime
The prime necessity was to save her, Mary, from the toils of the law that were closing around her.Within the Law
Look at the case of the "Hyena," as he was called in his prime.Ridgeway
Fuel consumption is a prime factor in the production of engine power.Flying Machines
W.J. Jackman and Thos. H. Russell
He had been suddenly awakened: and he was in the prime of life.The Leopard Woman
Stewart Edward White
The Prime Minister sent for Sacco, and they had a talk together.The Three Cities Trilogy, Complete
- having no factors except itself or onex² + x + 3 is a prime polynomial
- (foll by to)having no common factors (with)20 is prime to 21
- the tonic of a scale
Word Origin for prime
late 14c., "first in order," from Latin primus "first, the first, first part," figuratively "chief, principal; excellent, distinguished, noble" (source also of Italian and Spanish primo), from pre-Italic *prismos, superlative of PIE *preis- "before," from root *per- (1) "beyond, through" (see per).
Meaning "first in importance" is from 1610s in English; that of "first-rate" is from 1620s. Arithmetical sense (e.g. prime number) is from 1560s; prime meridian is from 1878. Prime time originally (c.1500) meant "spring time;" broadcasting sense of "peak tuning-in period" is attested from 1961.
"earliest canonical hour" (6 a.m.), Old English prim, from Medieval Latin prima "the first service," from Latin prima hora "the first hour" (of the Roman day). Meaning "most vigorous stage" first recorded 1530s; specifically "springtime of human life" (often meaning ages roughly 21 to 28) is from 1590s. In classical Latin, noun uses of the adjective meant "first part, beginning; leading place."
"to fill, charge, load" (a weapon), 1510s, probably from prime (adj.). Meaning "to cover with a first coat of paint or dye" is from c.1600. To prime a pump (c.1840) meant to pour water down the tube, which saturated the sucking mechanism and made it draw up water more readily. Related: Primed; priming.
In addition to the idioms beginning with prime
- prime mover
- prime of life
- prime the pump
- past one's prime