Date: 14th century
a. of second rank, importance, or value
b. of, relating to, or constituting the second strongest of the three or four degrees of stress recognized by most linguists <the fourth syllable of basketball team carries secondary stress> c. of a tense expressive of past time 2. a. immediately derived from something original, primary, or basic b. of, relating to, or being the induced current or its circuit in an induction coil or transformer <secondary voltage> c. characterized by or resulting from the substitution of two atoms or groups in a molecule <a secondary salt>; especially being, characterized by, or attached to a carbon atom having bonds to two other carbon atoms d. (1) not first in order of occurrence or development (2) dependent or consequent on another disease or condition <secondary hypertension> (3) produced by activity of formative tissue and especially cambium other than that at a growing point <secondary growth> <secondary phloem> 3. a. of, relating to, or being the second order or stage in a series b. of, relating to, or being the second segment of the wing of a bird or the quills of this segment c. of or relating to a secondary school <secondary education> • secondarily adverb • secondariness noun II. noun (plural -aries) Date: 15th century 1. one occupying a subordinate or auxiliary position rather than that of a principal 2. a defensive football backfield 3. the coil through which the secondary current passes in an induction coil or transformer — called also secondary coil 4. any of the quill feathers of the forearm of a bird — see wing illustration
New Collegiate Dictionary. 2001.