pre·​view | \ ˈprē-ˌvyü How to pronounce preview (audio) \
previewed; previewing; previews

Definition of preview

 (Entry 1 of 2)

transitive verb

1 : to see beforehand specifically : to view or to show in advance of public presentation
2 : to give a preliminary survey of



Definition of preview (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : an advance statement, sample, or survey
2 : an advance showing or performance (as of a motion picture or play)
3 or less commonly prevue \ ˈprē-​ˌvyü How to pronounce prevue (audio) \ : a selected group of scenes shown to advertise a movie, television show, etc.

called also trailer

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Other Words from preview


previewer \ ˈprē-​ˌvyü-​ər How to pronounce previewer (audio) \ noun

Examples of preview in a Sentence


The designers will preview their new lines at the fashion show. They previewed the upcoming football season. You can preview the page before you print it.


We saw the movie at a special preview. Before the movie starts they always show previews of coming attractions. There are previews of the next week's episode at the end of each show. They gave a preview of the upcoming football season. The magazine includes a preview of the newest fall fashions.
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Recent Examples on the Web: Verb

The rug is one of eight models by leading designers that were first previewed at IKEA's Democratic Design Days conference at its headquarters in Almhult, Sweden, last June. Hadley Keller, House Beautiful, "Virgil Abloh's IKEA Rugs Are Already Going for Thousands on Ebay," 26 Apr. 2019 This isn't the first time Balfe has previewed next season on social media. Caroline Hallemann, Town & Country, "Outlander Actress Caitriona Balfe Just Teased Season 5's First Episode on Instagram," 3 Apr. 2019 This weekend saw Victoria Beckham preview her brand's Autumn/ Winter 2019 collection at the Tate Britain gallery as part of London Fashion Week. Amy Mackelden, Harper's BAZAAR, "Victoria Beckham's Entire Family Sat Front Row at Her London Fashion Week Show," 17 Feb. 2019 Their first 27-piece capsule, previewed exclusively in the images here, possesses the same sentimentality that drew Chan back home, but the duo are not stuck in the past. Vogue, "The Girls Behind YanYan, a New Knit Label From Hong Kong, Are Making Modern Maa Maa Style," 14 Mar. 2019 The House of Run guys preview the Boston Marathon, discuss the Commonwealth Games and rave about USC sprinter Michael Norman on their most recent podcast., "Remembering Jon Hendershott; the latest on Mt. SAC's stadium; Oregon track & field rundown," 12 Apr. 2018 In that speech, Castro previewed an early education program that would become his signature achievement, Pre-K 4 SA, and a college-admittance counseling center that would become Cafe College. Gilbert Garcia, San Antonio Express-News, "For Nirenberg, time has come today," 10 Apr. 2018 Ahead of this year's sale, natives volunteer Gail Snyder previews what to expect from her group's booth this year. Birmingham Botanical Gardens,, "Variety of native plants available at Spring Plant Sale," 9 Apr. 2018 Along with the Birkenstock revival, the Spring 2019 runways also previewed the comeback of Teva sandals. Lauren Alexis Fisher, Harper's BAZAAR, "Valentino Birkenstocks Are Now Available to Shop for $495," 27 Feb. 2019

Recent Examples on the Web: Noun

Of course, the preview has everyone asking: What kind of trouble is Luis bringing this time? Jennifer Aldrich, Country Living, "'Blue Bloods' Hints It's Bringing Back the Person Who's Behind Linda Reagan's Death," 8 Mar. 2019 There were a lot of nods toward this kind of environmental storytelling in our short preview. Kyle Orland, Ars Technica, "Hands-on: Fallout 76 lets you bring some company to the Apocalypse," 8 Oct. 2018 Take a look at the Jason Wyatt Frederick illustration on the cover of next week's Reader, our annual Pitchfork preview. Ryan Smith, Chicago Reader, "Free Shit / Music Guess who’s on our cover for a chance to win passes to the 2018 Pitchfork Music Festival," 13 July 2018 Daily Pilot July means the start of a breather period for most theatrical-producing organizations — but definitely not UC Irvine, where the New Swan Theater recently launched its seventh mini-season previews. Timesoc,, "TimesOC: Police release DNA snapshot of possible suspect in girl’s 1973 slaying," 11 July 2018 Music expert Jeffrey Lee Puckett walks Swifties through the experience in his concert preview. Louisville Courier Journal, The Courier-Journal, "Everything you need to know about Taylor Swift's Louisville concert," 29 June 2018 StubHub revealed its fourth-annual preview of the summer concert landscape on Wednesday (May 30), breaking down the summer's most in-demand touring acts on the secondary ticket marketplace. Monica Mercuri, Billboard, "Taylor Swift, Ed Sheeran Dominate StubHub's Top Summer Tours of 2018: Exclusive," 30 May 2018 The opening moment of the two-minute preview is a beautiful, sweeping wide shot of a very familiar castle: Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry. Anna Menta, Newsweek, "‘Fantastic Beasts’ Trailer Apparates ‘Harry Potter’ Fans to a High-Def Hogwarts," 13 Mar. 2018 Pioneer Village: Ozaukee County Historical Society World War II Living History event preview, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. May 18; re-enactors encampment with demonstrations and USO style evening dance, 10 a.m.-10 p.m. May 19, 4880 Highway I, Saukville. Elaine Rewolinski, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, "What's going on in Milwaukee this week: May 18-24," 17 May 2018

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


1607, in the meaning defined at sense 1


1881, in the meaning defined at sense 1

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Statistics for preview

Last Updated

7 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for preview

The first known use of preview was in 1607

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More Definitions for preview



English Language Learners Definition of preview

 (Entry 1 of 2)

: to see, hear, or show something (such as a movie) before it is available to the public
: to give a general description of (something that will happen in the future)
: to see an example of what something will look like



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

: a special show or performance that allows some people to see a movie, play, etc., before it is shown to the public
US : a selected group of scenes that are shown to advertise a movie or television show
: a description of something that will happen or be available in the future


pre·​view | \ ˈprē-ˌvyü How to pronounce preview (audio) \

Kids Definition of preview

: an instance of showing something (as a movie) before others get to see it

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More from Merriam-Webster on preview

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with preview

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for preview

Spanish Central: Translation of preview

Nglish: Translation of preview for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of preview for Arabic Speakers

Comments on preview

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


a sum of money that is sent as a payment

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