There are 2 definitions of prior in English:

prior1

Line breaks: prior
Pronunciation: /ˈprʌɪə
 
/

adjective

[attributive]
Existing or coming before in time, order, or importance: he has a prior engagement this evening
More example sentences
  • It does appear that, due to the patient leaving the ward without prior notice to the staff nurse, this routine was not carried out.
  • When the student returns, she must be reinstated to her prior status.
  • Almost half the defendants convicted had no prior arrest records.
Synonyms

noun

North American informal Back to top  
A previous criminal conviction: he had no juvenile record, no priors
More example sentences
  • We talked about the prior - the arrest warrants that are outstanding for this individual, Edmunds.
  • This man has no priors, who has been a contributing worker throughout his life, finds himself in the dock charged with a very serious offence.
  • It's a diversion program, a deferred sentencing program, for ‘predicate felons,’ people with multiple serious priors and a drug problem who would otherwise be serving long sentences.

Origin

early 18th century: from Latin, literally 'former, elder', related to prae 'before'.

Phrases

prior to

Before: she visited me on the day prior to her death
More example sentences
  • In the weeks and months prior to his death, he took some steps to organise his financial affairs.
  • Why are cameras not placed at frequent intervals on this road or, at the very least prior to a sharp bend?
  • He said that the back of the silver Rover had been clipped by the blue Mercedes prior to the collision.
Synonyms

Definition of prior in:

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Word of the day dinkum
Pronunciation: ˈdɪŋkəm
adjective
(of an article or person) genuine, honest, true

There are 2 definitions of prior in English:

prior2

Line breaks: prior
Pronunciation: /ˈprʌɪə(r)
 
/

noun

1The male head of a house or group of houses of certain religious orders, in particular:
1.1The man next in rank below an abbot.
More example sentences
  • Friaries were occupied by friars, abbeys were headed by abbots, priories by priors.
  • Until the Reformation, the spiritual peerage also included abbots and priors, and spiritual peers formed a majority of the House of Lords.
  • The first abbot of Dunfermline was Geoffrey, prior of Canterbury, while David I's Cistercian foundation at Melrose was established by monks from Rievaulx.
1.2The head of a house of friars.
More example sentences
  • Although the documents are not clear, most historians agree that he was appointed prior of the Dominican convent in Würzburg.
  • Taize is a celibate, monastic community of men living under a common rule with Brother Roger as prior.
  • Brother John, who became the prior at Mont-Cornillon in 1242, must have been the first male to whom Juliana spoke regarding her vision for the new feast.

Origin

late Old English, from a medieval Latin noun use of Latin prior 'elder, former' (see prior1).

Derivatives

priorate

noun
More example sentences
  • Their organization was strictly hierarchical, into priorates, then bailiwicks and lastly commanderies.
  • He painted it in the year of our Lord 1413, in the month of February, during the time of Matthew's priorate of this monastery.

priorship

noun
More example sentences
  • Under his priorship great care was given to the liturgical chant, to studies in general and the strengthening of the monastic spirit.
  • Fr John Keating, O.Carm., during his priorship (1976-82), removed the choir stalls from the Oratory and installed the present seating in order to accommodate the growing numbers coming to the Eucharist on Sundays.

Definition of prior in: