preliminary

noun
pre·​lim·​i·​nary | \ pri-ˈli-mə-ˌner-ē How to pronounce preliminary (audio) \
plural preliminaries

Definition of preliminary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that precedes or is introductory or preparatory: such as
a : a preliminary scholastic examination
b preliminaries plural, British : front matter
c : a preliminary heat or trial (as of a race)
d : a minor match preceding the main event (as of a boxing card)

preliminary

adjective

Definition of preliminary (Entry 2 of 2)

: coming before and usually forming a necessary prelude to something else preliminary studies preliminary results

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Other Words from preliminary

Adjective

preliminarily \ pri-​ˌli-​mə-​ˈner-​ə-​lē How to pronounce preliminarily (audio) \ adverb

Examples of preliminary in a Sentence

Noun a meeting to discuss seating arrangements that was merely a preliminary to the formal negotiating sessions Adjective Preliminary findings show that the drug could help patients with skin cancer. The team was eliminated in the preliminary round of the tournament. research that is preliminary to the study
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun As with the previous two events, no fans will be at the arena, but the fights will be available on ESPN, with the preliminaries starting at 5 p.m. CDT Saturday followed by the main card at 8. Mark Inabinett | Minabinett@al.com, al, "Even the police couldn’t keep Eryk Anders from training for Saturday’s UFC bout," 16 May 2020 The preliminaries begin at 6 p.m. Eastern time and the main card at 9 p.m. Saturday on ESPN. Victor Mather, New York Times, "The Biggest Weekend of Live Sports on TV in a Long Time," 15 May 2020 Felicia made the podium at state, while Tayla fouled out in the state preliminaries. Andrew Turner, latimes.com, "Daily Pilot High School Female Athlete of the Week: Costa Mesa’s Tayla Crenshaw making a name for herself," 28 Apr. 2018 Two Walpole hurdlers made appearances at the state meet last season: Sheehan (14th in the preliminaries) and junior Dallin Byerly (11th). Matt Maccormack, BostonGlobe.com, "Walpole boys’ indoor track a program on the rise," 11 Jan. 2020 Hixon was 17th in preliminaries of individual 3-meter. David Woods, Indianapolis Star, "Indy's Sarah Bacon is first U.S. female diver to medal since 2005," 13 July 2019 The 2020 state meet begins Thursday, Feb. 20, with the diving competition, followed by the girls swimming preliminaries and finals Friday, Feb. 21, and the boys swimming prelims and finals Saturday, Feb. 22. James Weber, Cincinnati.com, "Five storylines to watch in the Kentucky high school swimming and diving meet," 20 Feb. 2020 In the Division 1 preliminaries, Rosales unleashed a lifetime-best throw of 143-9 in the event. Andrew Turner, Daily Pilot, "Daily Pilot Girls’ Track and Field Dream Team: Alejandra Rosales next in Marina’s throwing pipeline," 10 Oct. 2019 The diving preliminaries begin at 9 a.m. Saturday at the natatorium, while all finals going off at 1 p.m. Lewis Bagley, Indianapolis Star, "On first night at IHSAA girls swimming state finals, northside youth enjoys hot start," 15 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective In late April, after a preliminary review, Gilday recommended that Crozier be returned to command the Roosevelt. Lolita C. Baldor And Robert Burns, USA TODAY, "AP: Navy reverses course, upholds firing of carrier captain who urged action on virus," 20 June 2020 The preliminary positivity rate for tests conducted Friday is 5.9%, according to state data. Tiana Woodard, The Indianapolis Star, "Indiana coronavirus cases: 411 new cases, 19 additional deaths reported," 20 June 2020 In late April, after a preliminary review, Gilday recommended that Crozier be returned to command the Roosevelt. Lolita C. Baldorand Robert Burns, BostonGlobe.com, "Navy upholds firing of carrier captain in virus outbreak," 19 June 2020 By comparison, the tourism-heavy Nevada posted a preliminary unemployment rate for May of 25.3%, down from a 30.1% rate in April, according to BLS data. Alicia Wallace, CNN, "Nebraska's unemployment rate is nearly 5 times lower than Nevada's," 19 June 2020 Once the investigations are concluded, a preliminary review will be conducted by a sheriff's department panel to determine whether any immediate actions are warranted, the statement said. NBC News, "L.A. deputy fatally shoots young man who pulled gun and was running away, police say," 19 June 2020 Gilday's decision to hold both Crozier and Baker accountable is confirmation of concerns expressed by top Pentagon officials who demanded a deeper investigation when the Navy presented the results of a preliminary probe in April. Lolita C. Baldor, Robert Burns, Anchorage Daily News, "Navy upholds firing of aircraft carrier captain who pleaded for help with coronavirus outbreak," 19 June 2020 The Philadelphia City Council approved a preliminary spending budget for next year that would slash the city’s police department by $33 million. Emma Colton, Washington Examiner, "Philadelphia City Council approves preliminary budget that would slash police funding by $33M," 18 June 2020 Officials have preliminary identified holding off on any capital improvement projects, such as repairing Station No. 5, in the event there is a need to reduce expenses in the 2021 township budget. Jeff Forward, Houston Chronicle, "Woodlands Fire officials still waiting for structural analysis for Station No. 5," 18 June 2020

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

Noun

1656, in the meaning defined above

Adjective

1657, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for preliminary

Noun

French préliminaires, plural, from Medieval Latin praeliminaris, adjective, preliminary, from Latin prae- pre- + limin-, limen threshold

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Time Traveler for preliminary

Time Traveler

The first known use of preliminary was in 1656

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Statistics for preliminary

Last Updated

2 Jun 2020

Cite this Entry

“Preliminary.” Merriam-Webster.com Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/preliminary. Accessed 4 Jul. 2020.

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More Definitions for preliminary

preliminary

noun
How to pronounce preliminary (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of preliminary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that comes first in order to prepare for or introduce the main part of something else
: a game that is played before the main part of a competition to decide which players or teams will be allowed to continue playing

preliminary

adjective

English Language Learners Definition of preliminary (Entry 2 of 2)

: coming before the main part of something

preliminary

noun
pre·​lim·​i·​nary | \ pri-ˈli-mə-ˌner-ē How to pronounce preliminary (audio) \
plural preliminaries

Kids Definition of preliminary

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: something that comes before the main or final part The athletes competed in the preliminaries.

preliminary

adjective

Kids Definition of preliminary (Entry 2 of 2)

: coming before the main or full part I won the preliminary round. The preliminary results are promising.

preliminary

adjective
pre·​lim·​i·​nary | \ pri-ˈli-mə-ˌner-ē \

Legal Definition of preliminary

: coming before and usually serving as a temporary or intermediate step to something preliminary negotiations a preliminary payment plan

Other Words from preliminary

preliminarily adverb
preliminary noun

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Comments on preliminary

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