\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

Humphrey’s versatility may make for the larger headache for opposing defensive coordinators in game prep, but Johnson is more likely to take over a given Saturday. Chris Johnson And Eric Single,, "Inside SI's Top 100 Players of 2018: Settling Debates and Predicting Our Biggest Misses," 25 June 2018 The prep for this year’s tournament started last April. Shawn Mcfarland,, "From Food To Fan-Friendliness, Here's What's New At the 2018 Travelers Championship," 19 June 2018 In prep for the big day, Ariana has been sharing clues and snippets of her music on social media. Victoria Rodriguez, Seventeen, "Here’s The Real Reason Why Ariana Grande’s Cover Art for Her Album “Sweetener” Is Upside-Down," 19 June 2018 Staszkiewicz plans to do the same at Minnesota unless the Gophers find a walk-on spot for a player who scored more than 100 goals as a prep. Mark Stewart, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "Seniors lead a charge that nets the Lancers a second straight WIAA title," 16 June 2018 For Kate Middleton and her royal babies, pre-wedding prep includes leisurely walks in the park. Erica Gonzales, Harper's BAZAAR, "Kate Middleton Was Seen with Prince Louis and Princess Charlotte Ahead of the Royal Wedding," 16 May 2018 Lesson planning, grading papers, coaching, helping students put together résumés, work on SAT prep, and then a weekend at the pistol range? Tyler Bonin, The Atlantic, "Teachers Are Not Soldiers," 3 Mar. 2018 The hours of prep that go into red carpet appearances don’t go unnoticed. Allie Briggs,, "All The BET Awards Red Carpet Looks We Can't Get Over," 25 June 2018 Reports of Kate Spade’s suicide and struggle with depression have transformed her from symbol of polished prep to a blunt reminder that suffering affects all types., "Suicide rates rise sharply across the US, new report shows," 8 June 2018

Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

To prep Lily's hair, Gregory used Marc Anthony Grow Long Leave In to boost shine and keep strands healthy. Karina Hoshikawa, Teen Vogue, "Exclusive: Lily Collins Does Gothic Makeup at Met Gala 2018," 7 May 2018 Real talk: Actually, the only thing that preps your immune system to fend off the flu is vaccination. Elizabeth Narins, Cosmopolitan, "9 Flu Myths That Seriously Need to Be Shut Down," 8 Feb. 2018 Even with the royal wedding behind her, the new Duchess of Sussex is still enlisting the help of her maid of honor to prep for her public engagements. Chrissy Rutherford, Harper's BAZAAR, "Meghan Markle's Trusted Friend/ Stylist Advised on Her Ireland Wardrobe," 11 July 2018 The two commitments are the latest in a recent run of skill position players in UK’s 2019 class, joining three-star Georgia prep running back Travis Tisdale and three-star Butler wide receiver Demontae Crumes in committing since June 24. Jon Hale, The Courier-Journal, "Kentucky football celebrated Fourth of July with two 2019 commitments," 5 July 2018 Three lucky firefighters who only needed to prep the engines were able to catch Ivan Rakitic match-winning penalty after the other firefighters left and obviously, celebrated accordingly. Cady Lang, Time, "Croatian Firefighters Missed Their Team's World Cup Victory Over Russia Because Duty Called," 11 July 2018 To prep the skin, Greenberg started her with the celebrity-beloved Skyn Iceland Hydro Cool Firming Eye Gels that have appeared in many a pre-red carpet selfie. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Kaley Cuoco's Wedding Day Look Featured All This Budget-Friendly Drugstore Makeup," 3 July 2018 Ahead of this year's blockbuster, Johnson enlisted trainer and wellness coach Ramona Braganza to prep her frame for those numerous nude scenes. Calin Van Paris, Vogue, "Dakota Johnson's Sculpted Abs Are Proof That Pilates Works," 18 June 2018 Harrington has worked with Dierks Bentley to prep his latest, The Mountain, for a June 8 release and to organize his hot-ticket Seven Peaks Music Festival. Billboard Staff, Billboard, "Billboard's 2018 Country Power Players List Revealed: The Industry's Most Influential," 5 June 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

13 Oct 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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Comments on prep

What made you want to look up prep? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


one that holds something together

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