primeval

play
adjective pri·me·val \prī-ˈmē-vəl\

Definition of primeval

  1. 1 :  of or relating to the earliest ages (as of the world or human history) :  ancient, primitive <100 acres of primeval forest which has never felt an ax — Mary R. Zimmer>

  2. 2 :  primordial 1b

primevally

play \-və-lē\ adverb

Examples of primeval in a sentence

  1. <primeval forests slowly disappearing as the climate changed>

Did You Know?

First things first. "Primeval" comes from the Latin words primus, meaning "first, and aevum, meaning "age." In Latin, those terms were brought together to form "primaevus," a word that means "of or relating to the earliest ages." Other English words that descend from "primus" include "prime" and "primary," "primordial" (a synonym of "primeval"), and "primitive." "Primus" also gave rise to some terms for folks who are number one in charge, including "prince" and "principal."

Origin and Etymology of primeval

Latin primaevus, from primus first + aevum age — more at aye


First Known Use: 1662


PRIMEVAL Defined for English Language Learners

primeval

play
adjective pri·me·val \prī-ˈmē-vəl\

Definition of primeval for English Language Learners

  • : very old or ancient

  • : basic and powerful


PRIMEVAL Defined for Kids

primeval

play
adjective pri·me·val \prī-ˈmē-vəl\

Definition of primeval for Students

  1. :  belonging to the earliest time :  primitive <… wild dogs ranged in packs through the primeval forest … — Jack London, The Call of the Wild>

Word Root of primeval

The Latin word primus, meaning “first,” gives us the root prim. Words from the Latin primus have something to do with being first. Anything primary comes first in importance or order. Anything primeval belongs to a period of time that came first, before the present. Anything primitive also belongs to an earlier time.



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