Word Origin & History
early 13c., from O.Fr. avancer "move forward," from V.L. *abanteare (It. avanzare, Sp. avanzar), from L.L. abante "from before," composed of ab- "from" + ante "before, in front of, against," from PIE *anti "against," locative singular of *ant- "front, forehead." The -d- was inserted 16c. on mistaken
notion that initial a- was L. ad-. Meaning "to give money before it is legally due" is first attested 1670s. The noun is first recorded 1520s; advances "amorous overtures" is from 1706. The adj. (in advance warning, etc.) is not recorded before 1910.
1530s, "far ahead in the course of actions or ideas," pp. adj. from advance
(q.v.). Of studies, from 1790. Military use is from 1795. In late 19c. used especially in reference to views on women's equality.