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initial

[ih-nish-uh l] /ɪˈnɪʃ əl/
adjective
1.
of, pertaining to, or occurring at the beginning; first:
the initial step in a process.
2.
Phonetics. occurring at the beginning of a word or syllable, as the (k) sound of kite, chasm, or quay.
noun
3.
an initial letter, as of a word.
4.
the first letter of a proper name.
5.
a letter of extra size or an ornamental character used at the beginning of a chapter or other division of a book, manuscript, or the like.
verb (used with object), initialed, initialing or (especially British) initialled, initialling.
6.
to mark or sign with an initial or the initials of one's name, especially as a token of preliminary or informal approval.
Origin
1520-1530
1520-30; < Latin initiālis, equivalent to initi(um) beginning (init-, noun derivative of inīre to enter, begin; in- in-2 + īre to go; cf. comes) + -ium -ium) + -alis -al1
Related forms
initialer, noun
initially, adverb
preinitial, verb (used with object)
subinitial, verb (used with object), subinitialed, subinitialing or (especially British) subinitialled, subinitialling.
uninitialed, adjective
uninitialled, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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Examples from the web for initial
  • Three years later, that initial challenge has turned into a way of life.
  • After that initial flush fades, simply nip off spent blooms and the plant will slip into another round of bloom.
  • Milk was not the initial idea for this property, and neither was cheese.
  • Towards the close of the eighteenth century, changes started in the pronunciation of initial h and wh.
  • Its initial success was due partly to its novelty and partly to the wide interest which the excursion itself had excited.
  • The chief initial source of this was labor in the army, and his pay and bounty as a soldier.
  • Its initial promise quickly got a cold shower of real life in the developing world.
  • Or even being able to turn and look out and see surroundings that weren't even visible in the initial image.
  • initial impressions of the crater as a lifeless wasteland are quickly dispelled.
  • As new data comes in, he discards initial concepts and integrates others.
British Dictionary definitions for initial

initial

/ɪˈnɪʃəl/
adjective
1.
of, at, or concerning the beginning
noun
2.
the first letter of a word, esp a person's name
3.
(printing) a large sometimes highly decorated letter set at the beginning of a chapter or work
4.
(botany) a cell from which tissues and organs develop by division and differentiation; a meristematic cell
verb -tials, -tialling, -tialled (US) -tials, -tialing, -tialed
5.
(transitive) to sign with one's initials, esp to indicate approval; endorse
Derived Forms
initialer, initialler, noun
initially, adverb
Word Origin
C16: from Latin initiālis of the beginning, from initium beginning, literally: an entering upon, from inīre to go in, from in-² + īre to go
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 initial
adj.

1520s, "of or pertaining to a beginning," from Middle French initial or directly from Latin initialis "initial, incipient," from initium "a beginning, an entrance," from past participle stem of inire "to go into, enter upon, begin," from in- "into, in" (see in- (2)) + ire "to go" (see ion).

v.

"to mark or sign with initials," 1864, American English, from initial (n.). Related: Initialed; initialing.

n.

"initial letter of a name or surname," 1620s, from initial (adj.) in a specialized sense "standing at the beginning of a word, sentence, etc."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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