Definition of prefer
1 : to promote or advance to a rank or position
2 : to like better or best prefers sports to reading prefers to watch TV
3 : to give (a creditor) priority
4 archaic : to put or set forward or before someone : recommend
5 : to bring or lay against someone won't prefer charges
6 : to bring forward or lay before one for consideration
Examples of prefer in a Sentence
Some people like vanilla ice cream, but I prefer chocolate.
She tends to prefer small college campuses.
I prefer this dictionary because of its helpful examples.
Which one is the preferred alternative?
What is the preferred pronunciation of her name?
Recent Examples of prefer from the Web
Over the years, Iran has usually preferred to play the long game, lying low and working with local proxies rather than going for quick victories.
Naomi Watts would prefer her children just forget their mom’s a movie star.
Sows prefer to hang around Steep Creek near the Mendenhall Glacier Visitor Center, Scott said.
That said, the Magic would prefer to have forward Jonathan Isaac and wing Wesley Iwundu play well in over the next few days.
Wagner mentally logs which backs prefer to make a cut to the left or to the right, and which linemen have trouble blocking toward a certain direction.
As Zzyym identifies as neither — preferring to use the pronoun ‘
For the carrot Penrod prefers peeling it and then using a julienne peeler to shave perfectly thin ribbons off the carrot.
But Francona seems to prefer him lower in the lineup.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'prefer'. Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
PREFER Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of prefer for English Language Learners
: to like (someone or something) better than someone or something else
law : to make (a charge) against someone in a court of law
PREFER Defined for Kids
Definition of prefer for Students
: to like better than another or others She prefers chocolate ice cream.
Word Root of prefer
The Latin word ferre, meaning “to carry” or “to bring,” gives us the root fer. Words from the Latin ferre have something to do with carrying. To transfer is to carry across from one person, place, or condition to another. To confer is to bring something to someone in order to present it. To offer is to bring forth for another to accept or reject. To prefer is to carry a stronger liking for one over another.
Legal Definition of prefer
1 : to give (a creditor or debt) priority or preference any preferred charges such as child support or alimony — In re Smiley, 427 P.2d 179 (1967)
2 : to bring forward for determination; especially : to bring (a charge) against someone the various means by which a grand jury might prefer charges — State v. Byrd, 399 S.E.2d 267 (1990)
Seen and Heard
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