ad·​vance | \ əd-ˈvan(t)s How to pronounce advance (audio) \
advanced; advancing

Definition of advance

 (Entry 1 of 3)

transitive verb

1 : to accelerate the growth or progress of advance a cause
2 : to bring or move forward advance a pawn
3 : to raise to a higher rank was advanced from clerk to assistant manager
4 archaic : to lift up : raise
5 : to bring forward in time especially : to make earlier advance the date of the meeting
6 : to bring forward for notice, consideration, or acceptance : propose advance an idea
7 : to supply or furnish in expectation of repayment advance a loan
8 : to raise in rate : increase advance the rent

intransitive verb

1 : to move forward : proceed an advancing army
2 : to make progress : increase advance in age
3 : to rise in rank, position, or importance advance through the ranks
4 : to rise in rate or price advancing wages



Definition of advance (Entry 2 of 3)

1 : a moving forward halted the enemy's advances
2a : progress in development … mistaking material advance for spiritual enrichment.— H. J. Laski
b : a progressive step : improvement an advance in medical technique
3 : a rise in price, value, or amount The workers won wage advances.
4 : a first step or approach made (as to gain favor or form an acquaintance) especially : the act of speaking to someone in an effort to start a sexual relationship usually plural She rejected his advances. The report alleges that the supervisor repeatedly made unwanted/improper sexual advances towards subordinates.
5 : a provision of something (such as money or goods) before a return is received I need an advance on my salary. also : the money or goods supplied received a $100,000 advance on his new book
in advance
1 : to, toward, or in a place or position ahead sent scouts out in advance
2 : before a deadline or an anticipated event made reservations in advance
in advance of
: ahead of made preparations several days in advance of her arrival



Definition of advance (Entry 3 of 3)

1 : made, sent, or furnished ahead of time advance sales
2 : going or situated before an advance party of soldiers

Other Words from advance


advancer noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for advance

Synonyms: Verb

Synonyms: Noun

Antonyms: Verb

Antonyms: Noun

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Choose the Right Synonym for advance


advance, promote, forward, further mean to help (someone or something) to move ahead. advance stresses effective assisting in hastening a process or bringing about a desired end. advance the cause of peace promote suggests an encouraging or fostering and may denote an increase in status or rank. a campaign to promote better health forward implies an impetus forcing something ahead. a wage increase would forward productivity further suggests a removing of obstacles in the way of a desired advance. used the marriage to further his career

Examples of advance in a Sentence

Verb The car advanced slowly down the street. The sun slowly advanced across the sky. She opened the door and advanced cautiously into the room. advance the hands of a clock The film is advanced by an electric motor. The team advanced the ball steadily down the field. Our understanding of this disease has advanced rapidly in recent years. The team did not advance beyond the first round of the play-offs. The company tries to keep up with advancing technology. As he advanced in age and stature he advanced in knowledge. Noun trying to halt the enemy's advance trying to halt the enemy's advances a big advance in technology The new system represents a considerable advance over the old one. There have been few advances made in the treatment of this disease. There has been little advance made in the treatment of this disease. The workers won wage advances. a yearlong advance in stock prices Adjective an advance copy of a new book See More
Recent Examples on the Web: Verb The top two finishers in the June 7 primary will advance to a November runoff to represent Council District 2, which includes Point Loma, Ocean Beach, Mission Beach, Old Town and Clairemont. David Garrick, San Diego Union-Tribune, 11 May 2022 The winner of that quarterfinal will advance to the 2 p.m. CT Friday semifinal with No. 3 seed Tennessee on that side of the bracket. Michael Casagrande |, al, 8 May 2022 If none of the six candidates wins a majority in the primary, then the top two voter-getters will advance to the June 21 runoff. Michael R. Wickline, Arkansas Online, 8 May 2022 The top four vote getters will then advance to an August general election in which voters will be able to rank the four candidates by order of preference. Iris Samuels, Anchorage Daily News, 6 May 2022 If no one wins 50%, the top two vote-getters will advance to a run-off in the November general election. oregonlive, 2 May 2022 The top three candidates who receive a majority of votes will advance to a second round of interviews. Laura Hancock, cleveland, 26 Apr. 2022 The two, who led a crowded field of twelve candidates, will advance to a second and final round of voting on April 24. Ibtissem Guenfoud, ABC News, 11 Apr. 2022 The top four vote-getters will advance to an Aug. 16 runoff, at which point voters will rank them in order of preference. Los Angeles Times, 8 Apr. 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Smrecansky recommends buying tickets in advance at for the fourth annual Crawfish Boil on May 22. Jessi Virtusio, Chicago Tribune, 13 May 2022 Beachside Wine Festival is $119 in advance or $140 at the gate. San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 May 2022 Visitors are highly encouraged to purchase tickets online in advance via the museum's website. Tanya Wildt, Detroit Free Press, 12 May 2022 Whenever possible, plan your flights three to six months in advance to take advantage of the limited amount of lower fares. William Thornton |, al, 12 May 2022 Also assess in advance any mobility needs for your trip. Erin E. Williams, Washington Post, 12 May 2022 Booking far in advance comes with risks at a time when airlines are often readjusting their schedules to account for crew shortages. Jacob Passy, WSJ, 12 May 2022 Grand Tasting: $65 in advance or $80 on the day of the event. Dahlia Ghabour, The Courier-Journal, 12 May 2022 Guests must pre-register and pay for classes in advance. Charles Infosino, The Enquirer, 11 May 2022 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective All other outdoor panels and activities are free and do not require advance reservations. Dorany Pinedastaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 21 Apr. 2022 The three main lodges at Whistler Blackcomb require advance reservations to eat, which can be made on Vail’s Epic Mix app starting at 7 a.m. the previous day. Laura Johnston, cleveland, 14 Mar. 2022 All of the restaurants require advance reservations for dine-in. Susan Dunne,, 8 Feb. 2022 Veru is currently in discussions with the Biomedical Advanced Research and Development Authority (BARDA) and other government agencies to secure an advance purchasing agreement for the drug, pending approval from the FDA. Colin Lodewick, Fortune, 12 Apr. 2022 Tickets are available now for advance online purchase. Los Angeles Times, 12 Apr. 2022 There are more advance in-person voting locations this year. Alia Malik, ajc, 6 Apr. 2022 When Hampton watched an advance edit of the series with his family, the scenes of his tantrums left him embarrassed and frustrated. Thuc Nhi Nguyenstaff Writer, Los Angeles Times, 31 Mar. 2022 The Rose Bowl provided an advance look at what the 2022 season might look like for Jaxon Smith-Njigba in the slot, operating in an area of the field where Stroud excels. Stephen Means, cleveland, 29 Mar. 2022 See More

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'advance.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of advance


1538, in the meaning defined at sense 2


15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2a


1701, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for advance


Middle English advauncen, alteration (with initial a- taken as assimilated form of Latin ad- ad-) of avauncen, borrowed from Anglo-French avancer, going back to Vulgar Latin *abantiāre, verbal derivative of Latin abante "before, in front," from ab- ab- + ante "before" — more at ante-


derivative of advance entry 1 (or borrowed from French avance, going back to Middle French, noun derivative of avancer)


derivative of advance entry 2

Learn More About advance

Time Traveler for advance

Time Traveler

The first known use of advance was in the 15th century

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Dictionary Entries Near advance

ad valorem



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Last Updated

15 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Advance.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 16 May. 2022.

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More Definitions for advance


ad·​vance | \ əd-ˈvans How to pronounce advance (audio) \
advanced; advancing

Kids Definition of advance

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 : to move forward Advance your piece five spaces on your next turn.
2 : to help the progress of Laws were passed that advance freedom.
3 : to raise to a higher rank : promote She was advanced from teller to assistant bank manager.
4 : to give ahead of time My boss advanced me 100 dollars from my wages.
5 : propose sense 1 The candidate advanced a new plan.



Kids Definition of advance (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a forward movement Troops tried to halt the enemy's advance.
2 : progress in development : improvement advances in medicine
3 : a rise in price, value, or amount
4 : a first step or approach friendly advances
5 : money given ahead of the usual time I asked for an advance on my salary.
in advance
: before an expected event You knew a week in advance about the test.


transitive verb
advanced; advancing

Legal Definition of advance

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to supply or provide ahead of time: as
a : to give (a gift) by way of or as an advancement
b : to supply (as money) beforehand in expectation of repayment or other future adjustment



Legal Definition of advance (Entry 2 of 2)

: a provision of something (as goods or money) before a return is received also : the money or goods supplied

More from Merriam-Webster on advance

Nglish: Translation of advance for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of advance for Arabic Speakers


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