early

ear|ly1 W1S1 [ˈə:li US ˈə:rli] adj comparative earlier superlative earliest
▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
1¦(first part)¦
2¦(before usual)¦
3¦(beginning)¦
4¦(new thing)¦
5 the early hours
6 an early start
7 at/from an early age
8 an early night
9 early bird/early riser
10 the early bird catches the worm
11 early potatoes/lettuces etc
▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
[: Old English; Origin: Arlice, from Ar 'early, soon']
1.) ¦(FIRST PART)¦
in the first part of a period of time, event, or process
the early morning sunshine
an afternoon in early spring
In the early days , the railways mainly carried goods.
She is in her early twenties .
the recession of the early 1980s
The money could be paid as early as next week.
He spent the early part of his career at St John's Hospital.
the experiences of early childhood
the early works of Shakespeare
My earliest memories are of fruit trees.
Early signs are encouraging.
2.) ¦(BEFORE USUAL)¦
arriving or happening before the usual or expected time
≠ ↑late
five minutes/three hours etc early
The bus was ten minutes early.
early for
I was a few minutes early for my appointment.
David decided to take early retirement (=stop working before the normal age) .
She drank herself into an early grave (=died younger than is normal) .
3.) ¦(BEGINNING)¦
used to emphasize that something has just begun, especially when you do not know how it will develop
It's too early to say whether the show will be a success.
It's early days yet. I don't want to make any predictions.
4.) ¦(NEW THING)¦ [only before noun]
being one of the first people, events, machines etc
Early motor cars had very poor brakes.
fossil evidence of early man
5.) the early hours
the time between ↑midnight and morning
I didn't finally get to bed until the early hours.
in the early hours of sth
The attack happened in the early hours of Sunday morning.
6.) an early start
a start made very early in the day because you have a lot to do, far to go etc
We need to make an early start tomorrow.
7.) at/from an early age
when you are very young, or starting when you were very young
She's played tennis from a very early age.
8.) an early night
if you have an early night, you go to bed earlier than usual
≠ ↑a late night have/get an early night
I think I'll get an early night.
9.) early bird/early riser
someone who always gets up very early in the morning
10.) the early bird catches the worm
used to say that if you do something early or before other people, you will be successful
11.) early potatoes/lettuces etc
potatoes etc that are ready to be picked before any others
▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
COLLOCATES for sense 1
early morning/afternoon/evening
early spring/summer etc
early August/January etc
in the early days/months/years (=in the beginning)
in your early twenties/forties/seventies etc (=aged 20-23, 40-43, 70-73 etc)
the early 1920s/1980s/90s etc (=1920-1923, 1980-1983, 1990-1993 etc)
as early as (=used for emphasizing an early time)
the early stages/part (of something)
somebody's early life/childhood/adolescence etc
somebody's early songs/books/work etc
somebody's early memories (=the things someone remembers from when they were very young)
early signs/indications
▬▬▬▬▬▬▬
early 2
early2 W1S1 adv comparative earlier superlative earliest
1.) before the usual, arranged, or expected time
≠ ↑late
We arrived early.
They must have come home early.
2.) near the beginning of a period of time, event, process etc
≠ ↑late early in
She went out early in the morning.
He was sent off early in the game.
early this/next/last year etc
The building should be finished early next year.
The restaurant opened earlier this month.
We want to start as early as possible .
The disease is easy to treat if diagnosed early.
3.) early on
at an early stage in a relationship, process etc
I realized early on I'd never pass the exam.
early on in
We encountered problems early on in the project.

Dictionary of contemporary English. 2013.

Synonyms:

Look at other dictionaries:

  • early — adv Early, soon, beforehand, betimes share the meaning of at or nearly at a given point of time or around the beginning of a specified or implied period of time. Early is used chiefly in reference to a period of time (as a day, a lifetime, an age …   New Dictionary of Synonyms

  • Early — may refer to:History * the beginning or oldest part of a defined historical period, as opposed to middle or late periods. ** e.g., Early modern EuropePlaces: *In the United States: ** Early, Iowa ** Early, Texas ** Early County, GeorgiaPeople: *… …   Wikipedia

  • Early — ist der Name von Personen: Jubal Anderson Early (1816–1894), General der Konföderierten James M. Early (1922–2004), US amerikanischer Elektrotechnik Ingenieur Peter Early (1773−1817), US amerikanischer Politiker und Gouverneur von Georgia Orte in …   Deutsch Wikipedia

  • Early — Ear ly, a. [Compar. {Earlier} ([ e]r l[i^]*[ e]r); superl. {Earliest}.] [OE. earlich. [root]204. See {Early}, adv.] 1. In advance of the usual or appointed time; in good season; prior in time; among or near the first; opposed to {late}; as, the… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • early — ► ADJECTIVE (earlier, earliest) & ADVERB 1) before the usual or expected time. 2) of or at the beginning of a particular time, period, or sequence. ● at the earliest Cf. ↑at the earliest ● early bird …   English terms dictionary

  • early — [adj1] in the beginning a bit previous, aboriginal, ancient, antecedent, antediluvian, antiquated, brand new, budding, early bird*, fresh, initial, new, original, preceding, premier, prevenient, previous, primal, prime, primeval, primitive,… …   New thesaurus

  • Early B — Early B, de son vrai nom Earlando Arrington Neil, est un deejay jamaïcain né en 1956 à Kingston (Jamaïque) et décédé le 9 novembre 1994. Il était surnommé The Doctor. Discographie 1984 Four Wheel No Real (Midnight Rock) Singles: Cane Man A Fe… …   Wikipédia en Français

  • Early — Early, IA U.S. city in Iowa Population (2000): 605 Housing Units (2000): 293 Land area (2000): 0.394821 sq. miles (1.022582 sq. km) Water area (2000): 0.000000 sq. miles (0.000000 sq. km) Total area (2000): 0.394821 sq. miles (1.022582 sq. km)… …   StarDict's U.S. Gazetteer Places

  • Early — Ear ly ([ e]r l[y^]), adv. [OE. erli, erliche, AS. [=ae]rl[=i]ce; [=ae]r sooner + l[=i]c like. See {Ere}, and {Like}.] Soon; in good season; seasonably; betimes; as, come early. [1913 Webster] Those that me early shall find me. Prov. viii. 17.… …   The Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • early — O.E. ærlic early, from ær soon, ere (see ERE (Cf. ere)) + lice, adverbial suffix (see LY (Cf. ly) (2)). Cf. O.N. arliga early. The early bird of the proverb is from 1670s. Related: Earlier; earliest …   Etymology dictionary

  • early on — is first recorded in BrE in 1928 and only later in AmE. It is a kind of back formation from earlier on, itself modelled on later on (first recorded 1822). Early on and earlier on are both now common in both BrE and AmE: • The BBC recognised early …   Modern English usage

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”

We are using cookies for the best presentation of our site. Continuing to use this site, you agree with this.