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Related to previously: willingness, pushy, acknowledged


1. Existing or occurring before something else in time or order; prior: children by a previous marriage.
2. Informal Acting, occurring, or done too soon; premature or hasty: "I have been too previous, for which you must blame the natural impatience of a man in love" (Georgette Heyer).

[From Latin praevius, going before : prae-, pre- + via, way; see wegh- in Indo-European roots.]

pre′vi·ous·ly adv.
pre′vi·ous·ness n.


1. 'previously' and 'before'

If you are talking about a period measured back from some earlier time, you use before or previously.

He had died a month before.
She had rented the flat some fourteen months previously.
See before
2. 'ago'

You only use ago when you are talking about a period of time measured back from the present.

We met two years ago.
See ago
3. 'for'

You use for to say how long a period lasts in the past, present, or future, or how much time passes without something happening.

She slept for eight hours.
He will be away for three weeks.
I hadn't seen him for four years.
See for
4. 'since'

You use since to say when a period of time started.

She has been with the group since it began.
...the first civilian president since the coup 17 years ago.

You also use since to refer to the last time that something happened, or to how much time passes without something happening.

She hadn't eaten since breakfast.
It was a long time since she had been to church.
See since
ThesaurusAntonymsRelated WordsSynonymsLegend:
Adv.1.previously - at an earlier time or formerly; "she had previously lived in Chicago"; "he was previously president of a bank"; "better than anything previously proposed"; "a previously unquestioned attitude"; "antecedently arranged"


adverb before, earlier, once, in the past, formerly, back then, until now, at one time, hitherto, beforehand, a while ago, heretofore, in days or years gone by Previously she had no time to work in her own garden.


1. At a time in the past:
2. Up to this time:
fyrr, áîur
trước kia


[ˈpriːvɪəslɪ] ADV (= earlier, formerly) → antes, anteriormente; (= in advance) → con antelación, previamente
as previously mentionedcomo se ha mencionado antes or anteriormente
previously, the country had been divided in twoantes or anteriormente, el país había estado dividido en dos partes
she read out a previously prepared speechleyó un discurso que había preparado con antelación or previamente


[ˈpriːviəsli] advauparavant
10 days previously → 10 jours auparavantpre-war prewar [ˌpriːˈwɔːr] adj [leader, job, years, period, car, model, world] → d'avant-guerre


advvorher, früher; previously I had very little time to cookfrüher hatte ich nur sehr wenig Zeit zum Kochen; he’d arrived three hours previouslyer war drei Stunden zuvor angekommen; previously unreleased/unpublishedbislang or bisher unveröffentlicht; previously unknownbislang or bisher unbekannt


[ˈpriːvɪəslɪ] adv (before) → prima; (in the past) → in precedenza; (already) → già


(ˈpriːviəs) adjective
earlier in time or order. on a previous occasion; the previous owner of the house.
ˈpreviously adverb
previous to
before. They told their families about their engagement previous to publishing it in the newspaper.


مِنْ قَبْل předtím tidligere vorher πρωτύτερα antes aiemmin précédemment prethodno in precedenza 以前に 전에 voorafgaand tidligere poprzednio previamente заблаговременно innan แต่ก่อน daha önceden trước kia 先前
References in classic literature ?
It would seem that the domestics had been previously instructed; for, instead of penetrating the thicket, they followed the route of the column; a measure which Heyward stated had been dictated by the sagacity of their guide, in order to diminish the marks of their trail, if, haply, the Canadian savages should be lurking so far in advance of their army.
They pursued, and took me; and brought me on the eighth day to the Licks, where twenty-seven of my party were, three of them having previously returned home with the salt.
Now there was something ugly and evil in his face, which they had not previously noticed, and which grew still the more obvious to sight the oftener they looked upon him.
I waited, but nothing came; then, in the first place--and there is something more dire in this, I feel, than in anything I have to relate-- I was determined by a sense that, within a minute, all sounds from her had previously dropped; and, in the second, by the circumstance that, also within the minute, she had, in her play, turned her back to the water.
Going to his heavy grego, or wrapall, or dreadnaught, which he had previously hung on a chair, he fumbled in the pockets, and produced at length a curious little deformed image with a hunch on its back, and exactly the color of a three days' old Congo baby.
The schools composing none but young and vigorous males, previously mentioned, offer a strong contrast to the harem schools.
Previously Jurgis had scouted this idea, but now knit his brows and nodded his head slowly--yes, perhaps it would be best; they would all have to make some sacrifices now.
After the expositions which the trader had previously given of his humane principles, Mr.
When I brought my procession of human bats up into the open world and the glare of the afternoon sun -- previously blindfolding them, in charity for eyes so long untortured by light -- they were a spectacle to look at.
I had previously informed him of his mistake about the distance from Allerheiligen to Oppenau, and had also informed the Ordnance Depart of the German government of the same error in the imperial maps.
A week previously he had as good as admitted to himself that he believed Luigi had possessed such a knife, and that he still possessed it notwithstanding his pretense that it had been stolen.
She had never had a slave under her control previously to myself, and prior to her marriage she had been dependent upon her own industry for a living.

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