Prevail Pre*vail", v. i. [imp. & p. p. {Prevailed}; p. pr. & vb. n. {Prevailing}.] [F. pr['e]valoir, OF. prevaleir, L. praevalere; prae before + valere to be strong, able, or worth. See {Valiant}.] 1. To overcome; to gain the victory or superiority; to gain the advantage; to have the upper hand, or the mastery; to succeed; -- sometimes with over or against. [1913 Webster]

When Moses held up his hand, Israel prevailed, and when he let down his hand, Amalek prevailed. --Ex. xvii. 11. [1913 Webster]

So David prevailed over the Philistine. --1 Sam. xvii. 50. [1913 Webster]

This kingdom could never prevail against the united power of England. --Swift. [1913 Webster]

2. To be in force; to have effect, power, or influence; to be predominant; to have currency or prevalence; to obtain; as, the practice prevails this day. [1913 Webster]

This custom makes the short-sighted bigots, and the warier skeptics, as far as it prevails. --Locke. [1913 Webster]

3. To persuade or induce; -- with on, upon, or with; as, I prevailedon him to wait. [1913 Webster]

He was prevailed with to restrain the Earl. --Clarendon. [1913 Webster]

Prevail upon some judicious friend to be your constant hearer, and allow him the utmost freedom. --Swift. [1913 Webster]

The Collaborative International Dictionary of English. 2000.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • prevailing — prevailing, prevalent, rife, current are comparable when they mean general (as in circulation, acceptance, or use) especially in a given place or at a given time. Prevailing applies especially to something which is predominant or which generally… …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • prevailing — pre‧vail‧ing [prɪˈveɪlɪŋ] adjective [only before a noun] existing at a particular time or in a particular situation; = CURRENT: • The prevailing economic conditions have had a serious impact on our operations. • The shares will be bought at… …   Financial and business terms

  • prevailing — I (current) adjective abundant, accepted, accustomary, accustomed, all embracing, bourgeois, catholic, characteristic, colloquial, common, commonplace, comprehensive, conformable, contemporary, conventional, current, customary, diffuse, dominant …   Law dictionary

  • Prevailing — Pre*vail ing, a. 1. Having superior force or influence; efficacious; persuasive. Shak. [1913 Webster] Saints shall assist thee with prevailing prayers. Rowe. [1913 Webster] 2. Predominant; prevalent; most general; as, the prevailing disease of a… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • Prevailing — is synonymous with dominant: *Prevailing winds *Prevailing visibility *Prevailing wage …   Wikipedia

  • prevailing — [prē vāl′iŋ, pri vāl′ iŋ] adj. 1. superior in strength, influence, or effect 2. most frequent, noticeable, etc.; predominant 3. widely existing; prevalent prevailingly adv. SYN. PREVAILING applies to that which leads all others in acceptance,… …   English World dictionary

  • prevailing — prevailing; un·prevailing; …   English syllables

  • prevailing — [adj] general, dominant all embracing, by the numbers*, catholic, common, comprehensive, current, customary, ecumenical, established, familiar, fashionable, influential, in style, in vogue, main, operative, ordinary, popular, predominant,… …   New thesaurus

  • prevailing — pre|vail|ing [ prı veılıŋ ] adjective only before noun * existing at a particular time or in a particular place: The prevailing market conditions are not favorable to small investors. a. prevailing attitudes or types of behavior are the ones that …   Usage of the words and phrases in modern English

  • prevailing */ — UK [prɪˈveɪlɪŋ] / US adjective [only before noun] a) existing at a particular time or in a particular place The prevailing market conditions are not favourable to small investors. b) prevailing attitudes or types of behaviour are the ones that… …   English dictionary

  • prevailing — I (Roget s IV) modif. Syn. prevalent, general, current, rife, popular, common, regular, steady, predominant, dominant, universal, worldwide, sweeping, comprehensive, widespread, rampant, ruling, chief, principal, usual; see also common 1 . Syn.… …   English dictionary for students

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