: of or belonging to very early times <primitive cultures>
: of or belonging to an early stage of development <primitive tools>
Word Root of PRIMITIVE
The Latin word primus, meaning “first,” gives us the root prim. Words from the Latin primus have something to do with being first. Anything primary comes first in importance or order. Anything primeval belongs to a period of time that came first, before the present. Anything primitive also belongs to an earlier time.
Medical Definition of PRIMITIVE
: closely approximating an early ancestral type : little evolved
: belonging to or characteristic of an early stage of development <primitive cells>