pre·​set·​tle·​ment | \ ˌprē-ˈse-tᵊl-mənt How to pronounce presettlement (audio) \
variants: or pre-settlement

Definition of presettlement

1 : existing or occurring before occupation by settlers the presettlement wildlife population historical descriptions of presettlement forests In presettlement times, heavily vegetated surroundings contributed small amounts of sediment and nutrients to these wetlands.— Jon A. Kusler et al. … a reasonable midpoint between the extremes of doing nothing and trying to return the bay to its presettlement condition.— Deborah S. Knopman and Megan M. Susman
2 law : existing or occurring before a settlement (see settlement sense 2a) is reached a presettlement hearing/conference She estimated that about 25 percent of presettlement loans result in a loss to the lender because the settlement did not come through.— Ken Belson

First Known Use of presettlement

1901, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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The first known use of presettlement was in 1901

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Cite this Entry

“Presettlement.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Apr. 2021.

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