verb (1)
pre·​date | \ (ˌ)prē-ˈdāt How to pronounce predate (audio) \
predated; predating; predates

Definition of predate

 (Entry 1 of 2)


verb (2)
pre·​date | \ pri-ˈdāt How to pronounce predate (audio) \
predated; predating; predates

Definition of predate (Entry 2 of 2)

: to prey on (something or someone) Animals predate other animals in nature, but that is hardly commensurate with a massive worldwide farming industry that breeds species purely for our purpose.— Jenny Diski Are high-profile men that sexually predate women finally starting to lose immunity?— Alex McKinnon All cats may predate but those living indoors have little opportunity to do so.— Kevin Stafford There are many species that predate on pigeons and doves.— Revati

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Synonyms & Antonyms for predate

Synonyms: Verb (1)

antecede, antedate, forego, precede, preexist

Antonyms: Verb (1)

follow, postdate, succeed

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Examples of predate in a Sentence

Verb (1)

modes of transportation that predate the car the native people who predated European settlers in America

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

That was kind of fascinating to think my property predated the revolution. Jon Kelvey,, "Thursday was Jim McCarron Day in towns around Carroll County," 19 July 2019 The department has a history of complaints and investigations into employee conduct that predates Bessler's tenure. Paulina Pineda, azcentral, "Former Tempe Public Works Director Don Bessler sues city for age discrimination," 17 July 2019 The exposé predated by six months the allegations against Weinstein that launched the widespread #MeToo movement. Fortune, "What Does It Take to Certify That a Company Takes Harassment Seriously?," 16 July 2019 In fact, public dismay over cuts to government programs is an old story in Sweden, one that long predates the recent influx of refugees. Peter S. Goodman, New York Times, "The Nordic Model May Be the Best Cushion Against Capitalism. Can It Survive Immigration?," 11 July 2019 An archaeological dig in late 2018 revived a debate about which town was Connecticut’s oldest between Wethersfield and Windsor, but Jones said at the time that a Dutch trading post in Hartford predated both towns. Tess Vrbin,, "State archaeologist Brian Jones was an educator and mentor to many," 9 July 2019 Yet her job is known as a graveyard of careers for good reason—the problems long predate her tenure—and Mrs von der Leyen has done well to survive in it. The Economist, "EU leaders’ arduous deal on top jobs may yet fall apart," 4 July 2019 The Planetary Society’s LightSail project has been nearly a decade in the making, but the idea predates the organization. Daniel Oberhaus, WIRED, "SpaceX Is Launching a Solar Sail the Size of a Boxing Ring," 24 June 2019 Their relationship predates Tabor’s tenure as Browns special teams coordinator from 2011 to ’17. Rich Campbell,, "Matt Nagy's latest twist in Bears kicking competition: Creating 'Augusta silence' to crank up the pressure," 5 June 2019

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

Verb (1)

1854, in the meaning defined above

Verb (2)

1941, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for predate

Verb (2)

back-formation from predator or predatory

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Learn More about predate

Statistics for predate

Last Updated

23 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for predate

The first known use of predate was in 1854

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More from Merriam-Webster on predate

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with predate

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for predate

Britannica English: Translation of predate for Arabic Speakers

Comments on predate

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


something desired as essential

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