predawn

adjective

pre·​dawn ˌprē-ˈdȯn How to pronounce predawn (audio)
-ˈdän
variants or less commonly pre-dawn
: existing or occurring before dawn
a predawn attack
the predawn hours
… the gigantic telescope started scanning the predawn sky.Howard Blum
predawn noun
or less commonly pre-dawn
plural predawns also pre-dawns
The most bone-chilling predawns create the sharpest sunrises. Christine Schultz
… stepping out into the quiet pre-dawn, closing the door. Bryan Burrough

Examples of predawn in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Tips for viewing the Quadrantids meteor shower The Quadrantids are best viewed in the night and predawn hours, NASA suggests. Camille Fine, USA TODAY, 25 June 2024 During the frigid predawn hours, the 984-foot ship lost power, veered off course and destroyed the Francis Scott Key Bridge, killing six construction workers. Gabe Cohen, CNN, 24 June 2024 In the predawn darkness last year, Mira arrived at the lakeshore to confront an 800-pound male—relatively junior sized—pacing inside the enclosure. Joshua Hammer, Smithsonian Magazine, 24 June 2024 The predawn attack threatened to plunge Haiti deeper into turmoil. Jacqueline Charles, Miami Herald, 20 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for predawn 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'predawn.' 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

1883, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of predawn was in 1883

Dictionary Entries Near predawn

Cite this Entry

“Predawn.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/predawn. Accessed 17 Jul. 2024.

Last Updated: - Updated example sentences
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