preamble

noun
pre·​am·​ble | \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl How to pronounce preamble (audio) , prē-ˈam- \

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

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Examples of preamble in a Sentence

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, …”. His early travels were just a preamble to his later adventures.
Recent Examples on the Web Without any preamble Nohria brought up the rift between Tata Trusts (led by Ratan Tata) and Tata Sons (led by Cyrus Mistry). Deepali Gupta, Quartz India, "The board meeting that ousted Cyrus Mistry as Tata group chief," 23 Dec. 2019 A year ago, the former Denver South and CU Buffs star spent the last week of December getting his right wrist surgically repaired, the preamble to a winter of rest and rehab. Sean Keeler, The Denver Post, "Broncos RB Phillip Lindsay: 2020 should be even better, “now that I’m healthy enough” to polish my game," 31 Dec. 2019 But while the preamble to Game 7 was a touch pedestrian, the most recent Finals matchup between Boston and Los Angeles packed in the drama in a major way. Michael Shapiro, SI.com, "Ranking the Best NBA Finals of the Past Decade," 16 Sep. 2019 However, these first three episodes have felt almost like an extended preamble to some greater adventure—one that's finally beginning. Darren Orf, Popular Mechanics, "'The Mandalorian' Professes Its Love for Baby Yoda," 22 Nov. 2019 So pardon the long preamble before answering your question on Steven Montez. Mark Kiszla, The Denver Post, "Lunch Special: If Broncos QB Brandon Allen keeps winning, will Drew Lock not play this season?," 4 Nov. 2019 Carey will turn 50 next spring, so her holiday tour this season is just a preamble to what should be a big blowout to celebrate. John Adamian, courant.com, "Mariah Carey bringing holiday cheer to Mohegan," 6 Dec. 2019 The preamble to this year’s Big Ten championship game comes next week when Wisconsin visits the Horseshoe. Andy Greder, Twin Cities, "Pioneer Press Big Ten football picks: Week 8," 18 Oct. 2019 The good news is that the middling preamble made the finale, and coach Jim Calhoun’s final title, that much more unforgettable. Dan Greene, SI.com, "Ranking the College Basketball National Champions of the Decade," 2 Oct. 2019

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.

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First Known Use of preamble

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for 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

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Time Traveler for preamble

Time Traveler

The first known use of preamble was in the 14th century

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Statistics for preamble

Last Updated

8 Feb 2020

Cite this Entry

“Preamble.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/preamble. Accessed 17 Feb. 2020.

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More Definitions for preamble

preamble

noun
How to pronounce preamble (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of preamble

somewhat formal
: 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

noun
pre·​am·​ble | \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl How to pronounce preamble (audio) \

Kids Definition of preamble

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

preamble

noun
pre·​am·​ble | \ ˈprē-ˌam-bəl, prē-ˈam- How to pronounce preamble (audio) \

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.

History and Etymology for 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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