pre·​em·​i·​nent | \ prē-ˈe-mə-nənt How to pronounce preeminent (audio) \

Definition of preeminent

: having paramount rank, dignity, or importance : outstanding, supreme

Other Words from preeminent

preeminently adverb

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What is noteworthy about the following sentence? "Denali Mountain is a prominent eminence on the Alaskan landscape." You very likely recognized two words that are closely related to preeminent: prominent and eminence. All three words are rooted in the Latin verb stem -minēre, meaning "to stand out." Mount is also a related word: it comes from Latin mont- or mons, meaning "mountain," which shares a common ancestor with -minēre. Mount leads us in turn to paramount, a word closely related in meaning to preeminent.

Examples of preeminent in a Sentence

She's the preeminent chef in a city that has many good ones. The poem is a preeminent example of his work.
Recent Examples on the Web For decades McKinsey has been the preeminent corporate consulting firm, advising many of the world's biggest companies on strategy and operations. Matthew Perrone, ajc, 27 Apr. 2022 For decades, McKinsey has been the preeminent corporate consulting firm, advising many of the world’s biggest companies on strategy and operations. Matthew Perrone, Chicago Tribune, 27 Apr. 2022 Morgan Stanley is one of the world's preeminent financial firms. Paul R. La Monica, CNN, 26 Apr. 2022 As one of the nation’s preeminent civil rights attorneys, Sherrilyn Ifill has a lot to say about business, diversity, and racial inclusion. Jonathan Vanian, Fortune, 18 Mar. 2022 Brown will saddle the morning line favorite for America’s preeminent dirt race, with confidence in the colt, his team and that this may be his time. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, 5 May 2022 The effort is the latest to reinvigorate the market in the 1700 block of Pennsylvania Avenue, an area once known as Baltimore’s preeminent Black business district. Christina Tkacik, Baltimore Sun, 26 Apr. 2022 Hear these stories and more on Over the Rainbow in the Castro: A tour of San Francisco’s preeminent gayborhood. Tony Bravo, San Francisco Chronicle, 21 Apr. 2022 Between the nation’s two preeminent beer festivals, the Great American Beer Festival and the World Beer Cup, Domaine DuPage has won seven medals since 2007, including gold in 2014 and 2016. Josh Noel,, 20 Apr. 2022 See More

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

First Known Use of preeminent

15th century, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for preeminent

Middle English, from Late Latin praeeminent-, praeeminens, from Latin, present participle of praeeminēre to be outstanding, from prae- + eminēre to stand out — more at eminent

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The first known use of preeminent was in the 15th century

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Last Updated

21 May 2022

Cite this Entry

“Preeminent.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 28 May. 2022.

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More from Merriam-Webster on preeminent

Nglish: Translation of preeminent for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of preeminent for Arabic Speakers


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