prefigure

verb
pre·​fig·​ure | \ ˌprē-ˈfi-gyər How to pronounce prefigure (audio) , especially British -ˈfi-gə\
prefigured; prefiguring; prefigures

Definition of prefigure

transitive verb

1 : to show, suggest, or announce by an antecedent type, image, or likeness
2 : to picture or imagine beforehand

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Other Words from prefigure

prefigurement \ ˌprē-​ˈfi-​gyər-​mənt How to pronounce prefigurement (audio) , especially British  -​ˈfi-​gə-​ \ noun

Examples of prefigure in a Sentence

His style of painting prefigured the development of modern art. the first crocus traditionally prefigures the arrival of spring

Recent Examples on the Web

Years before, however, one campaign had prefigured her success. Andrew Cockburn, Harper's magazine, "Power of Attorney," 16 Sep. 2019 In so many ways Davis prefigured today's workaholic NFL exec. Jon Wertheim, SI.com, "How the Influence of Al Davis Shaped the Modern NFL," 27 Aug. 2019 In many instances, prefiguring modern Jordan’s respect for diversity, artisans of old covered the forbidden floor designs with geometric or calligraphic patterns, some of which are now being lifted to reveal the originals below. Andrew Solomon, Condé Nast Traveler, "Traveling Through Jordan’s Historic Ruins, Red Dunes, and Dead Sea," 24 July 2019 Eva’s name, the Latinate of Eve, prefigures her role in the post-apocalyptic world. Maria Garcia, latimes.com, "Review: Zombies are the threat in the dark fairy tale ‘Endzeit — Ever After’," 25 June 2019 Obsession, if anything, prefigured the kind of fear and hatred of Islam and Muslims that Trump has made mainstream and effectively turned into policy, the Muslim travel ban being only the most flagrant example. Adam Shatz, The New York Review of Books, "‘Orientalism,’ Then and Now," 20 May 2019 The vigorous asymmetry of Chapelle’s composition and his breezy, sketchlike draftsmanship not only reflect contemporaneous Rococo painters like François Boucher, but seem to prefigure early 20th-century poster design. Barrymore Laurence Scherer, WSJ, "‘Masterpieces of French Faience: Selections From the Sidney R. Knafel Collection’ Review: Not Dishwasher Safe," 1 Jan. 2019 Roasting people’s low batteries in screenshots prefigured that. Bijan Stephen, The Verge, "Roasting each other for our battery life in screenshots brought the internet together," 13 Aug. 2018 Aggressively pretty clothes were worn in a fume flecked background that prefigured the gilet jaunes Parisian chaos of the last few months. Vogue, "Vogue Editors Share Their Favorite Fashion Shows of the Year," 28 Dec. 2018

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

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for prefigure

Middle English, from Late Latin praefigurare, from Latin prae- pre- + figurare to shape, picture, from figura figure

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Statistics for prefigure

Last Updated

15 Oct 2019

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Time Traveler for prefigure

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

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More Definitions for prefigure

prefigure

verb

English Language Learners Definition of prefigure

formal : to show or suggest (something that will happen or exist at a future time)

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More from Merriam-Webster on prefigure

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prefigure

Spanish Central: Translation of prefigure

Nglish: Translation of prefigure for Spanish Speakers

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