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1530s, "far ahead in the course of actions or ideas," past participle adjective from advance (v.). Of studies, from 1790. Military use is from 1795. In late 19c. used especially in reference to views on women's equality.
mid-13c., avauncen, transitive, "improve (something), further the development of," from Old French avancier "move forward" (12c.), from Vulgar Latin *abanteare (source of Italian avanzare, Spanish avanzar), from Late Latin abante "from before," composed of ab- "from" (see ab-) + ante "before, in front of, against" (see ante).
The -d- was inserted 16c. on mistaken notion that initial a- was from Latin ad-. From c.1300 as "to promote;" intransitive sense is mid-14c., "move forward." Meaning "to give money before it is legally due" is first attested 1670s. Related: Advanced; advancing. The adjective (in advance warning, etc.) is recorded from 1843.
c.1300, "boasting, ostentation," from advance (v.). Early 15c. as "advancement in rank, wealth, etc." Advances "amorous overtures" is from 1706.