Dictionary

1early

adverb ear·ly \ˈər-lē\

: at or near the beginning of a period of time or a process, activity, series, etc.

: before the usual or expected time

ear·li·erear·li·est

Full Definition of EARLY

1
a :  near the beginning of a period of time <awoke early in the morning>
b :  near the beginning of a course, process, or series <early in his senatorial career>
2
a :  before the usual or expected time <the train arrived early>
b archaic :  soon
c :  sooner than related forms <these apples bear early>

Examples of EARLY

  1. Early in his career he moved to the city.
  2. a word first recorded early in the 17th century
  3. They were trailing by a touchdown early in the fourth quarter.
  4. The package should be arriving early next week.
  5. She arrived early to help with the preparations.
  6. I got up early to finish packing.

Origin of EARLY

Middle English erly, from Old English ǣrlīce, from ǣr early, soon — more at ere
First Known Use: before 12th century

2early

adjective

: existing or happening near the beginning of a period of time

: happening near the beginning of a process, activity, series, etc.

: coming or happening before the usual or expected time

ear·li·erear·li·est

Full Definition of EARLY

1
a :  of, relating to, or occurring near the beginning of a period of time, a development, or a series <in the early evening> <the early symptoms of the disease>
b (1) :  distant in past time
(2) :  primitive <early tools>
2
a :  occurring before the usual or expected time <an early arrival>
b :  occurring in the near future <at your earliest convenience>
c :  maturing or producing sooner than related forms <an early peach>
ear·li·ness noun

Examples of EARLY

  1. the early symptoms of the disease
  2. The early part of the book is better than the later part.
  3. We had an early spring this year.
  4. We're early. The show doesn't start for half an hour.
  5. I've always been an early riser.

First Known Use of EARLY

13th century

Early

biographical name Ear·ly \ˈər-lē\

Definition of EARLY

Ju*bal \ˈjü-bəl\ Anderson 1816–1894 Am. Confed. gen.
EARLY Defined for Kids

1early

adverb ear·ly \ˈər-lē\
ear·li·erear·li·est

Definition of EARLY for Kids

1
:  at or near the beginning of a period of time <woke up early> <early in my career>
2
:  before the usual or expected time <arrived early>

2early

adjective
ear·li·erear·li·est

Definition of EARLY for Kids

:  occurring near the beginning or before the usual time <early morning>
July 04, 2015
stringent Hear it
rigorous, strict, or severe
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