[ prahy-mawr-dee-uh l ]
/ praɪˈmɔr di əl /


constituting a beginning; giving origin to something derived or developed; original; elementary: primordial forms of life.
Embryology. first formed.
pertaining to or existing at or from the very beginning: primordial matter.

Origin of primordial

1350–1400; Middle English < Late Latin prīmōrdiālis of the beginning. See primordium, -al1

Related forms

pri·mor·di·al·i·ty [prahy-mawr-dee-al-i-tee] /praɪˌmɔr diˈæl ɪ ti/, nounpri·mor·di·al·ly, adverb

Can be confused

primal primeval primordial Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for primordial

British Dictionary definitions for primordial


/ (praɪˈmɔːdɪəl) /


existing at or from the beginning; earliest; primeval
constituting an origin; fundamental
biology of or relating to an early stage of developmentprimordial germ cells


an elementary or basic principle

Derived Forms

primordiality, nounprimordially, adverb

Word Origin for primordial

C14: from Late Latin prīmōrdiālis original, from Latin prīmus first + ōrdīrī to begin
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

Medicine definitions for primordial


[ prī-môrdē-əl ]


Being or happening first in sequence of time; primary; original.
Belonging to or characteristic of the earliest stage of development of an organism or part.
Relating to a primordium.

The American Heritage® Stedman's Medical Dictionary Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.