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English definition of “prior”

prior

adjective [before noun] (EARLIER)    /praɪər/ US  /praɪr/
C1 formal existing or happening before something else , or before a particular time : The course required no prior knowledge of Spanish . They had to refuse the dinner invitation because of a prior engagement (= something already planned for that time ).Before, after and alreadyAfter and behind prior to sth C1 before a particular time or event : the weeks prior to her death Before, after and alreadyAfter and behind
(Definition of prior adjective (EARLIER) from the Cambridge Advanced Learner's Dictionary & Thesaurus © Cambridge University Press)
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