Simple Definition of prevalent
: accepted, done, or happening often or over a large area at a particular time : common or widespread
Examples of prevalent in a sentence
Sweden is known as a nation ridden by suicide and alcoholism, but those problems are no more prevalent here than in most European countries. —John Harris, Rolling Stone, 14 Nov. 2002
Teams seem to him better coached, players more skilled, the strategy even more defensive, the opportunities less prevalent, the game less ripe. —Alec Wilkinson, ESPN, 16 Apr. 2001
So prevalent were grave robberies that the pharaohs' loyal retainers often spirited away their masters' remains for reinterment in secret graves. —Paul Martin, National Geographic Traveler, March 1999
Throughout the Mediterranean culture, which was the matrix of our own, the tree was a prevalent embodiment of the Mother Goddess; … —Francis DuPlessix Gray, UTNE Reader, November/December 1987
a custom that was once prevalent here
Those teaching methods are still prevalent at some schools.
a fashion that is prevalent among teenagers
Did You Know?
Many diseases that were prevalent a century ago have been controlled by advances in medicine. Smallpox was prevalent on several continents for many centuries, and when Europeans brought it with them to the Americas, it killed more American Indians than the armed settlers did. But prevalent doesn't just describe diseases. One ideal of male or female beauty may be prevalent in a particular society and quite a different ideal in another. In the 1950s and '60s, there was a prevalent notion that if you went swimming less than an hour after eating you might drown because of stomach cramps—which goes to show that not every prevalent idea is exactly true.
Origin and Etymology of prevalent
Latin praevalent-, praevalens very powerful, from present participle of praevalēre
First Known Use: 1576
PREVALENT Defined for Kids
Definition of prevalent for Students
: accepted, practiced, or happening often or over a wide area <prevalent beliefs>
Seen and Heard
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