Hypertext Webster Gateway: "before"

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Before \Be*fore"\, prep. [OE. beforen, biforen, before, AS.
beforan; pref. be- + foran, fore, before. See {Be-}, and
1. In front of; preceding in space; ahead of; as, to stand
before the fire; before the house.

His angel, who shall go Before them in a cloud and
pillar of fire. --Milton.

2. Preceding in time; earlier than; previously to; anterior
to the time when; -- sometimes with the additional idea of
purpose; in order that.

Before Abraham was, I am. --John viii.

Before this treatise can become of use, two points
are necessary. --Swift.

Note: Formerly before, in this sense, was followed by that.
``Before that Philip called thee . . . I saw thee.''
--John i. 48.

3. An advance of; farther onward, in place or time.

The golden age . . . is before us. --Carlyle.

4. Prior or preceding in dignity, order, rank, right, or
worth; rather than.

He that cometh after me is preferred before me.
--John i. 15.

The eldest son is before the younger in succession.

5. In presence or sight of; face to face with; facing.

Abraham bowed down himself before the people. --Gen.
xxiii. 12.

Wherewith shall I come before the Lord? --Micah vi.

6. Under the cognizance or jurisdiction of.

If a suit be begun before an archdeacon. --Ayliffe.

7. Open for; free of access to; in the power of.

The world was all before them where to choose.

{Before the mast} (Naut.), as a common sailor, -- because the
sailors live in the forecastle, forward of the foremast.

{Before the wind} (Naut.), in the direction of the wind and
by its impulse; having the wind aft.

From Webster's Revised Unabridged Dictionary (1913) (web1913)

Before \Be*fore"\, adv.
1. On the fore part; in front, or in the direction of the
front; -- opposed to {in the rear}.

The battle was before and behind. --2 Chron.
xiii. 14.

2. In advance. ``I come before to tell you.'' --Shak.

3. In time past; previously; already.

You tell me, mother, what I knew before. --Dryden.

4. Earlier; sooner than; until then.

When the butt is out, we will drink water; not a
drop before. --Shak.

Note: Before is often used in self-explaining compounds; as,
before-cited, before-mentioned; beforesaid.

From WordNet (r) 1.7 (wn)

adv 1: earlier in time; previously; "I had known her before"; "as I
said before"; "he called me the day before but your
call had come even earlier"; "her parents had died
four years earlier"; "I mentioned that problem
earlier" [syn: {earlier}]
2: at or in the front; "I see the lights of a town ahead"; "the
road ahead is foggy"; "staring straight ahead"; "we
couldn't see over the heads of the people in front"; "with
the cross of Jesus marching on before" [syn: {ahead}, {in

Additional Hypertext Webster Gateway Lookup

Enter word here:
Exact Approx

Gateway by dict@stokkie.net
stock only wrote the gateway and does not have any control over the contents; see the Webster Gateway FAQ, and also the Back-end/database links and credits.