noun pro·logue \ˈprō-ˌlg, -ˌläg\

: an introduction to a book, play, etc.

Full Definition of PROLOGUE

:  the preface or introduction to a literary work
a :  a speech often in verse addressed to the audience by an actor at the beginning of a play
b :  the actor speaking such a prologue
:  an introductory or preceding event or development

Variants of PROLOGUE

pro·logue also pro·log \ˈprō-ˌlg, -ˌläg\

Examples of PROLOGUE

  1. the prologue to his autobiography
  2. <unfortunately, the burglary, which he committed while still a teen, was but a prologue to a wasted life of crime>

Origin of PROLOGUE

Middle English prolog, from Anglo-French prologue, from Latin prologus preface to a play, from Greek prologos part of a Greek play preceding the entry of the chorus, from pro- before + legein to speak — more at pro-, legend
First Known Use: 14th century

Other Literature Terms

apophasis, bathos, bildungsroman, bowdlerize, caesura, coda, doggerel, euphemism, poesy, prosody


Next Word in the Dictionary: prolongPrevious Word in the Dictionary: prologosAll Words Near: prologue
How to use a word that (literally) drives some people nuts.
Test your vocab with our fun, fast game
Ailurophobia, and 9 other unusual fears