preamble

noun pre·am·ble \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl , prē-ˈam- \
Updated on: 22 Nov 2017

Definition of preamble

1 : an introductory statement; especially : the introductory part of a constitution or statute that usually states the reasons for and intent of the law
2 : an introductory fact or circumstance; especially : one indicating what is to follow

Examples of preamble in a Sentence

  1. The preamble to the U.S. Constitution begins by saying “We the People of the United States, in order to form a more perfect union, …”.

  2. His early travels were just a preamble to his later adventures.

Recent Examples of preamble from the Web

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

Origin and Etymology of preamble

Middle English, from Middle French preambule, from Medieval Latin preambulum, from Late Latin, neuter of praeambulus walking in front of, from Latin prae- + ambulare to walk

preamble Synonyms



PREAMBLE Defined for English Language Learners

preamble

noun

Definition of preamble for English Language Learners

  • : a statement that is made at the beginning of something (such as a legal document) and usually gives the reasons for the parts that follow

  • : something that comes before and leads to something else


PREAMBLE Defined for Kids

preamble

noun pre·am·ble \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl \

Definition of preamble for Students

: an introduction (as to a law) that often gives the reasons for what follows

Law Dictionary

preamble

noun pre·am·ble \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl, prē-ˈam- \

legal Definition of preamble

: an introductory statement (as to a contract); especially : the introductory part of a constitution or statute that usually states the reasons for and intent of the law
Note: While preambles do not state law and therefore are not judicially enforceable, they are used to determine legislative intent when interpreting statutes.

Origin and Etymology of preamble

Middle French preambule, from Medieval Latin preambulum, from Late Latin, neuter of preambulus walking in front of, from Latin prae- + ambulare to walk


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