1. Existing or occurring before something else in time or order; prior: children by a previous marriage.
2. Informal Acting, occurring, or done too soon; premature or hasty: "I have been too previous, for which you must blame the natural impatience of a man in love" (Georgette Heyer).
[From Latin praevius, going before : prae-, pre- + via, way; see wegh- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2018 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.