AskDefine | Define precedence

Dictionary Definition



1 status established in order of importance or urgency; "...its precedence as the world's leading manufacturer of pharmaceuticals"; "national independence takes priority over class struggle" [syn: precedency, priority]
2 preceding in time [syn: priority, antecedence, antecedency, anteriority, precedency] [ant: posteriority]
3 the act of preceding in time or order or rank (as in a ceremony) [syn: precession, precedency]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. The state of preceding in importance or priority.
    Family takes precedence over work, in an emergency.

Derived terms


the state of preceding in importance or priority

Extensive Definition

Precedence is a simple ordering, based on either importance or sequence; it may refer to one of the following:
  • Precedent, a legal case establishing a principle to be adhered to in subsequent rulings

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

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