What does precursor mean?

Definitions for precursor
prɪˈkɜr sər, ˈpri kɜr-pre·cur·sor

This dictionary definitions page includes all the possible meanings, example usage and translations of the word precursor.

Princeton's WordNet

  1. precursornoun

    a substance from which another substance is formed (especially by a metabolic reaction)

  2. precursor, forerunnernoun

    a person who goes before or announces the coming of another

  3. harbinger, forerunner, predecessor, herald, precursornoun

    something that precedes and indicates the approach of something or someone


  1. precursornoun

    That which precurses, a forerunner, a predecessor, an indicator of approaching events.

  2. precursornoun

    One of the compounds that participates in the chemical reaction that produces another compound.

  3. Etymology: From praecursor

Samuel Johnson's Dictionary

  1. Precursornoun

    Forerunner; harbinger.

    Etymology: præcursor, Lat. precurseur, Fr.

    Jove’s lightnings, the precursers
    Of dreadful thunder claps, more momentary
    Were not. William Shakespeare, Tempest.

    This contagion might have been presaged upon consideration of its precursors, viz. a rude winter, and a close, sulphurous and fiery air. Gideon Harvey, on the Plague.

    Thomas Burnet played the precurser to the coming of Homer in his Homerides. Alexander Pope.


  1. precursor

    A precursor is something that happens, exists, or is developed before another thing and often leads to, or influences its development. It can also refer to a person who precedes another in any job, position, or office.

Webster Dictionary

  1. Precursornoun

    one who, or that which, precedes an event, and indicates its approach; a forerunner; a harbinger

Dictionary of Military and Associated Terms

  1. precursor

    Any chemical reactant which takes place at any stage in the production by whatever method of a toxic chemical. This includes any key component of a binary or multicomponent chemical system.

How to pronounce precursor?

How to say precursor in sign language?


  1. Chaldean Numerology

    The numerical value of precursor in Chaldean Numerology is: 2

  2. Pythagorean Numerology

    The numerical value of precursor in Pythagorean Numerology is: 7

Examples of precursor in a Sentence

  1. Madeline Bernstein:

    Two years is a great sentence, typically across the county we're battling with people taking these cases seriously. It's a significant crime, a violent crime and can be a precursor of violence toward people.

  2. Ian Storey:

    As these facilities become operational, Chinese warnings to both military and civilian aircraft will become routine, these events are a precursor to an ADIZ, or an undeclared but de facto ADIZ, and one has to expect tensions to rise.

  3. Elizabeth Sattely:

    We used these genes to engineer a wild relative of tobacco to make the drug precursor and think we could also use these genes to make the drug in other easy-to-grow organisms such as yeast.

  4. Robin Bhar:

    The markets are perhaps eyeing that as a precursor to a pick up in demand as we go into Q4.

  5. Aimee Eyvazzadeh:

    They've said they've discovered this precursor cell in humans and this cell can somehow mature into healthy, young fertilizable eggs? Well, that's awesome, let me at that cell!

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Translations for precursor

From our Multilingual Translation Dictionary

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"precursor." Definitions.net. STANDS4 LLC, 2023. Web. 10 Dec. 2023. <https://www.definitions.net/definition/precursor>.

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    a young woman in the 1920s who flaunted her unconventional conduct and dress
    • A. flapper
    • B. impounding
    • C. brashness
    • D. calcaneus

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