adverb or adjective

be·​fore·​hand bi-ˈfȯr-ˌhand How to pronounce beforehand (audio)
: in anticipation
: in advance
: ahead of time : early

Example Sentences

Recent Examples on the Web Sources claimed that the pair split a few weeks beforehand. Wendy Geller, Peoplemag, 11 May 2023 In cases like Morton’s, where someone may be incapacitated for a long time, Klajbor said estate planning beforehand might be the best, proactive approach. Talis Shelbourne, Journal Sentinel, 20 Apr. 2023 Start with a warm-up Just as with traditional exercise, Adkinson warms up beforehand, doing various stretches. Melanie Radzicki Mcmanus, CNN, 7 Apr. 2023 If a significant political figure (or even a compelling gadfly) runs in the primaries, then the incumbent is effectively doomed in November or beforehand. Walter Shapiro, The New Republic, 3 Apr. 2023 Pro tips: While some forest areas have a sliver of cellphone service, get familiar with the loop beforehand and be prepared to navigate with offline maps. Patrick Connolly, Orlando Sentinel, 2 Apr. 2023 Smoked beforehand, the chicken’s wood flavors add a new, welcome dimension to the cheesy torpedo. Cesar Hernandez, San Francisco Chronicle, 15 Mar. 2023 Consumers can book their visit beforehand via mobile app, eliminating the hassle of calling and speaking with a representative. Jeff Fromm, Forbes, 22 Feb. 2023 In speeches at the conference, and in comments in the days beforehand, their tone resembled the 2017 security conference, which took place less than a month after Donald Trump was sworn in as president promising an America-first agenda that didn’t appreciate traditional alliances such as NATO. Paul Kane, Washington Post, 18 Feb. 2023 See More

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'beforehand.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

13th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

Time Traveler
The first known use of beforehand was in the 13th century

Dictionary Entries Near beforehand

Cite this Entry

“Beforehand.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 5 Jun. 2023.

Kids Definition


be·​fore·​hand -ˌhand How to pronounce beforehand (audio)
: ahead of time : in advance

More from Merriam-Webster on beforehand

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