\ˈprep \

Definition of prep 

(Entry 1 of 3)

3 : a preliminary trial for a racehorse


prepped; prepping

Definition of prep (Entry 2 of 3)

intransitive verb

1 : to attend preparatory school

2 [ short for prepare ] : to get ready

transitive verb

: prepare especially : to prepare for an operation or examination nurses prepped the patient

Definition of PrEP (Entry 3 of 3)

pre-exposure prophylaxis The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has said that PrEP, when used consistently, can reduce the risk of H.I.V. infection by up to 92 percent.— Ginia Bellafante

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Synonyms for prep

Synonyms: Verb

fit, fix, groom, lay, prepare, ready

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Examples of prep in a Sentence


Painting a room involves a lot of prep.


She spent all night prepping for the test. The runners are prepping themselves for the race. It took me about 20 minutes to prep the vegetables.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

What was once the pinnacle of New England prep (and later a flashy sequins-for-daytime vibe courtesy of former creative director Jenna Lyons) now looks relatively indistinguishable from other casual American brands such as the Gap. Rebecca Jennings, Vox, "J.Crew launched its newest brand 16 days ago. Now it’s closing.," 30 Nov. 2018 With less than a week left of #Droughtlander, prep for the upcoming season with a look at the show's new faces below. Julie Kosin, Harper's BAZAAR, "Outlander Season 4: Meet the New Cast," 30 Oct. 2018 For their flagship design, the Beartooth van boasts a small galley kitchen with diesel stove top, built-in sink, refrigerator, and flip-open counter tops that provide more space for prep. Megan Barber, Curbed, "Luxury camper van fits all the essentials in 112 square feet," 16 Oct. 2018 The Mundelein senior certainly lived up to those words throughout his storied prep career, in particular during his senior season. Bob Narang,, "Boys track notes: Mundelein sprinter Bobby Nuzzo earns pair of 3A state medals," 26 May 2018 McCaffrey committed to Michigan roughly one year after Peters, who had just finished his prep career as an All-American quarterback and was an early enrollee at Michigan. Nick Baumgardner, Detroit Free Press, "Michigan football's Dylan McCaffrey confident despite QB additions," 7 May 2018 The only guy on that list who is actually a product of Orlando is Devoe, who starred for Oak Ridge as a freshman, sophomore and junior before finishing his prep career at Montverde. Buddy Collings,, "Historic hoops season built on transfer talent," 12 Apr. 2018 Over his entire prep career, Langford put up 3,002 points, good for fourth on the state’s list of top scorers all-time. Chris Johnson,, "As Recruitment Nears Endpoint, Top Prospect Romeo Langford Updates Status at Jordan Brand Classic," 7 Apr. 2018 Rondo, who attended Eastern High School before finishing his prep career at Oak Hill Academy, paid for the entire event in Louisville out of pocket. Thomas Novelly, The Courier-Journal, "More Louisville kids got to see 'Black Panther' for free thanks to the NBA's Rajon Rondo," 19 Feb. 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

Theatrical releases beginning in 2019 won’t be available on Netflix, while Marvel Studios begins to prep a series of original series for the standalone service. Julia Alexander, The Verge, "Following in Luke Cage and Iron Fist’s footsteps," 30 Nov. 2018 But before applying anything to your face, make sure to use an electric scrub brush to get a smooth surface, then prep with a primer. Victoria Rodriguez, Seventeen, "4 Easy Ways to Apply Flawless Foundation," 9 July 2018 Cheese making at Murray’s Cheese Cheese lovers, rejoice: Murray’s Cheese provides courses that will prep you to make your own artisanal cheeses at home. Christian Allaire, Vogue, "The Best Cooking and Baking Classes in New York City," 18 Oct. 2018 Question from Jason Ainge, Greg, who preps the most for the show? Fox News, "Memorial Day Fan Mail special on 'The Five'," 29 May 2018 Wash and prep lettuce and vegetables for autumn salads two days ahead for easy assembly on Thanksgiving morning—wait to dress it until serving. Hannah Doolin, Country Living, "Here's Exactly When To Cook Every Dish For Thanksgiving Dinner," 16 Nov. 2016 While the fish is baking, prep the salsa: combine peach, onion, cilantro, and lime juice; season with salt and pepper to taste. Kim Walker, Woman's Day, "Desperation Dinners: Rockfish with Peach Salsa," 28 Sep. 2011 First, Jessie B preps her pubes with a trim, followed by a soak in the bath to soften up the hair follicles. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Beauty Vlogger Jessie B Uses Olive Oil to Shave Her Bikini Line, But Is It Safe?," 12 June 2018 Kim Kardashian Kim Kardashian began her Met Gala prep early in the day, lounging in an oversized armchair with curlers in her hair and plenty of Starbucks and water on hand. Zoë Weiner, Teen Vogue, "Met Gala 2018: Celebrities Share Getting-Ready Beauty Routines," 7 May 2018

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


1862, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1909, in the meaning defined at intransitive sense 1

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Statistics for prep

Last Updated

8 Dec 2018

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for prep

The first known use of prep was in 1862

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More Definitions for prep



English Language Learners Definition of prep

: to make yourself ready for something

: to make (someone or something) ready for something

Kids Definition of prep



\ˈprep \

Medical Definition of prep 

(Entry 1 of 2)

: the act or an instance of preparing a patient for a surgical operation the nurse had three preps to do

prepped; prepping

Medical Definition of prep (Entry 2 of 2)

: to prepare for a surgical operation or examination prep the patient for an appendectomy

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More from Merriam-Webster on prep

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with prep

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for prep

Nglish: Translation of prep for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of prep for Arabic Speakers

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