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1of chief importance; principal:the government’s primary aim is to see significant reductions in unemployment 2earliest in time or order of development:the primary stage of their political education not derived from, caused by, or based on anything else:the research involved the use of primary source materials in national and local archives 3of or relating to education for children between the ages of about five and ten:a primary school 4 Biology
& Medicine belonging to or directly derived from the first stage of development or growth:a primary bone tumor
5 (Primary) Geologyformer term for Paleozoic. 6relating to or denoting the input side of a device using electromagnetic induction, especially in a transformer. 7 Chemistry (of an organic compound) having its functional group located on a carbon atom that is bonded to no more than one other carbon atom. (chiefly of amines) derived from ammonia by replacement of one hydrogen atom by an organic group.
noun (plural primaries)
1 (also primary election) a preliminary election to appoint delegates to a party conference or to select the candidates for a principal, especially presidential, election. Ornithology a primary feather. Astronomy the body orbited by a smaller satellite or companion. a primary coil or winding in an electrical transformer. 3 (the Primary) Geology
, dated the Primary or Paleozoic era.