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[pree-awr-deyn] /ˌpri ɔrˈdeɪn/
verb (used with object)
to ordain beforehand; foreordain.
Origin of preordain
1525-35; pre- + ordain
Related forms
[pree-awr-dn-ey-shuh n] /ˌpri ɔr dnˈeɪ ʃən/ (Show IPA),
unpreordained, adjective Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for preordained
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • Perhaps his occupancy of that particular corner was preordained.

    The Silent Barrier Louis Tracy
  • And the now conscious stars have preordained this moment for my happiness.

    The Beaux-Stratagem George Farquhar
  • Whatever may befall thee, it was preordained for thee from everlasting.

    Familiar Quotations John Bartlett
  • It is preordained that I am to be nothing but a cumberer of the ground.

    My Lady Ludlow Elizabeth Gaskell
  • The immolators were preordained like the victim, and the holy race supplied both.

    Lord George Bentinck Benjamin Disraeli
  • Barbara knew that whether she was late or punctual had been preordained.

    Lady Lilith Stephen McKenna
  • It is given, as it is wanted, at the right time, and for the preordained purpose.

  • Looking at Life anatomically, which is as good a way as any, she was preordained to be a Shoulder.

    Options O. Henry
British Dictionary definitions for preordained


(transitive) to ordain, decree, or appoint beforehand
Derived Forms
preordination (ˌpriːɔːdɪˈneɪʃən) noun
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for preordained



1530s, from pre- + ordain (q.v.). Related: Preordained; preordaining.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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