pre·​con·​cep·​tion | \ ˌprē-kən-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce preconception (audio) \

Definition of preconception

1 : a preconceived idea
2 : prejudice

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Synonyms for preconception


prejudgment, prepossession

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Examples of preconception in a Sentence

I came to the lecture without any preconceptions. tried to go into the training sessions without any preconceptions

Recent Examples on the Web

The mind is halted at whatever verifies its preconceptions. Nikhil Sonnad, Quartz, "How to not watch the second 2020 Democratic primary debates," 31 July 2019 Those preconceptions can often be completely wrong. Cassie Werber, Quartz at Work, "How to have great conversations with strangers," 25 June 2019 Jennifer Nansubuga Makumbi’s magisterial first novel Kintu continually diverts us from our preconceptions about Africa. The New York Review of Books, "Namwali Serpell," 2 Mar. 2019 Those preconceptions have gotten in the way of research on reproductive strategies and genitalia evolution, according to Marie Herberstein, a biologist at Macquarie University in Australia. Quanta Magazine, "Why Evolution Reversed These Insects’ Sex Organs," 30 Jan. 2019 Part of the problem is that human responses to scent are modified by personal preference and preconceptions about what a particular aroma is supposed to do. April Long, Marie Claire, "Aromatherapy Perfumes: Do They Really Work?," 20 Feb. 2019 But these days the country is challenging those preconceptions, celebrating its diversity, its youthful spirit and its embrace of innovation. Clay Risen, New York Times, "Canadian Whisky’s Long-Awaited Comeback," 11 Jan. 2018 Political controversies are mainly the manifestations of warring preconceptions and worldviews long in the making. Barton Swaim, WSJ, "‘Fault Lines’ Review: How Did We Get Here?," 13 Jan. 2019 Over the course of the movie, the participants — drawn from a variety of ages and racial backgrounds — acknowledge and break down their preconceptions about one another. Ben Kenigsberg, New York Times, "4 Film Series to Catch in N.Y.C. This Weekend," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'preconception.' 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 preconception

1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for preconception

Last Updated

9 Aug 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for preconception

The first known use of preconception was in 1625

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More Definitions for preconception



English Language Learners Definition of preconception

: an idea or opinion that someone has before learning about or experiencing something directly


pre·​con·​cep·​tion | \ -kən-ˈsep-shən How to pronounce preconception (audio) \

Medical Definition of preconception

: occurring prior to conception preconception genetic counseling

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More from Merriam-Webster on preconception

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with preconception

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for preconception

Spanish Central: Translation of preconception

Nglish: Translation of preconception for Spanish Speakers

Comments on preconception

What made you want to look up preconception? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


recurring in steady succession

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