Definition of preemptive
2 of a bid in bridge : higher than necessary and intended to shut out bids by the opponents
3 : giving a stockholder first option to purchase new stock in an amount proportionate to his existing holdings
4 : marked by the seizing of the initiative : initiated by oneself <a preemptive attack>
Examples of preemptive in a sentence
The country took preemptive action against the perceived enemy.
a preemptive attack by the army
First Known Use of preemptive
PREEMPTIVE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of preemptive for English Language Learners
: done to stop an unwanted act by another group, country, etc., from happening
Legal Definition of preemptive
: of or relating to preemption
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up preemptive? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).