Definition of prologue
1 : the preface or introduction to a literary work
2a : a speech often in verse addressed to the audience by an actor at the beginning of a playb : the actor speaking such a prologue
3 : an introductory or preceding event or development
Examples of prologue in a Sentence
the prologue to his autobiography
unfortunately, the burglary, which he committed while still a teen, was but a prologue to a wasted life of crime
Recent Examples of prologue from the Web
If past is prologue, drama from the health-care debate and new Russia revelations — reinforced by Trump tweets — will swamp the message.
And, if past is prologue, Trump and his senior advisers won't answer any of them.
Calipari has seemingly already answered that question in his long, illustrious career, but past is not always prologue.
And if past is prologue, the Navy will assess how human error on the part of either crew could have led to such a catastrophe, despite all of the radar and communication systems on board.
But at least Trump’s victory allowed Americans to worry a bit less about the Syrian conflict becoming the prologue to a hot war between Moscow and Washington.
Dark Nights: Metal launches in August, with the prologue issue Dark Days:
LESSONS LEARNED Thissen said of the past speakers’ failure to thrive as gubernatorial candidates that the past is not always prologue.
With that all as prologue, things were particularly dire at the seventh-inning stretch.
These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'prologue.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.
Did You Know?
In ancient Greek drama, the prologos (a word that means basically "speaking before") was the opening portion of the play, before the entry of the all-important chorus. It might be spoken by a single actor, maybe playing a god, who would "set the scene" for the audience. Playwrights today instead often provide the same kind of "scene-setting" information through dialogue near the play's beginning; in movies, it may appear (as in the "Star Wars" series) in the form of actual written text. In a nonfiction book, the lead-in is now usually called a preface or introduction; novels rarely provide any introduction at all. Still, prologue remains a useful word for nonliterary purposes. The saying "The past is prologue" tells us that, in real life, almost everything can be a prologue to what follows it.
Origin and Etymology of prologue
Middle English prolog, from Anglo-French prologue, from Latin prologus preface to a play, from Greek prologos part of a Greek play preceding the entry of the chorus, from pro- before + legein to speak — more at pro-, legend
First Known Use: 14th centurySee Words from the same year
PROLOGUE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of prologue for English Language Learners
: an introduction to a book, play, etc.
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