I. adverb (earlier; -est) Etymology: Middle English erly, from Old English ǣrlīce, from ǣr early, soon — more at ere Date: before 12th century 1. a. near the beginning of a period of time <
awoke early in the morning
b. near the beginning of a course, process, or series <
early in his senatorial career
2. a. before the usual or expected time <
the train arrived early
b. archaic soon c. sooner than related forms <
these apples bear early
II. adjective (earlier; -est) Date: 13th century 1. a. of, relating to, or occurring near the beginning of a period of time, a development, or a series <
in the early evening
the early symptoms of the disease
b. (1) distant in past time (2) primitive <
early tools
2. a. occurring before the usual or expected time <
an early arrival
b. occurring in the near future <
at your earliest convenience
c. maturing or producing sooner than related forms <
an early peach
earliness noun

New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.


Look at other dictionaries:

  • Early — may refer to:History * the beginning or oldest part of a defined historical period, as opposed to middle or late periods. ** e.g., Early modern EuropePlaces: *In the United States: ** Early, Iowa ** Early, Texas ** Early County, GeorgiaPeople: *… …   Wikipedia

  • early — adv Early, soon, beforehand, betimes share the meaning of at or nearly at a given point of time or around the beginning of a specified or implied period of time. Early is used chiefly in reference to a period of time (as a day, a lifetime, an age …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Early — ist der Name von Personen: Jubal Anderson Early (1816–1894), General der Konföderierten James M. Early (1922–2004), US amerikanischer Elektrotechnik Ingenieur Peter Early (1773−1817), US amerikanischer Politiker und Gouverneur von Georgia Orte in …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Early — Ear ly, a. [Compar. {Earlier} ([ e]r l[i^]*[ e]r); superl. {Earliest}.] [OE. earlich. [root]204. See {Early}, adv.] 1. In advance of the usual or appointed time; in good season; prior in time; among or near the first; opposed to {late}; as, the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • early — ► ADJECTIVE (earlier, earliest) & ADVERB 1) before the usual or expected time. 2) of or at the beginning of a particular time, period, or sequence. ● at the earliest Cf. ↑at the earliest ● early bird …   English terms dictionary

  • early — [adj1] in the beginning a bit previous, aboriginal, ancient, antecedent, antediluvian, antiquated, brand new, budding, early bird*, fresh, initial, new, original, preceding, premier, prevenient, previous, primal, prime, primeval, primitive,… …   New thesaurus

  • Early — Early, IA U.S. city in Iowa Population (2000): 605 Housing Units (2000): 293 Land area (2000): 0.394821 sq. miles (1.022582 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.394821 sq. miles (1.022582 sq. km)… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Early — Ear ly ([ e]r l[y^]), adv. [OE. erli, erliche, AS. [=ae]rl[=i]ce; [=ae]r sooner + l[=i]c like. See {Ere}, and {Like}.] Soon; in good season; seasonably; betimes; as, come early. [1913 Webster] Those that me early shall find me. Prov. viii. 17.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • early — O.E. ærlic early, from ær soon, ere (see ERE (Cf. ere)) + lice, adverbial suffix (see LY (Cf. ly) (2)). Cf. O.N. arliga early. The early bird of the proverb is from 1670s. Related: Earlier; earliest …   Etymology dictionary

  • early — [ʉr′lē] adv., adj. earlier, earliest [ME erli < OE ærlic, adv. (> ærlic, adj.) < ær, before (see ERE) + lice, adv. suffix (see LY2, LIKE1)] 1. near the beginning of a given period of time or of a series, as of events; soon after the… …   English World dictionary

  • Early — (spr. Ärlih), Grafschaft im Staate Georgia (Nordamerika), 40 QM.; Flüsse: Chattahoochee, Spring u. Colamoka Creeks; Boden eben u. fruchtbar, mit schönen Waldungen; Producte: Baumwolle, Mais u. Bataten; Dampfschifffahrt auf dem Chattahoochee;… …   Pierer's Universal-Lexikon

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