9 Grammatical Pitfalls


[pree-hi-stawr-ik, -stor-, pree-i-] /ˌpri hɪˈstɔr ɪk, -ˈstɒr-, ˌpri ɪ-/
of or relating to the time or a period prior to recorded history:
The dinosaur is a prehistoric beast.
Slang. outdated; passé:
My mom has these prehistoric ideas about proper dress.
Also, prehistorical.
Origin of prehistoric
1850-55; pre- + historic
Related forms
prehistorically, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for prehistoric
  • But popular appeal notwithstanding, the evolutionary history of this prehistoric beast has proved somewhat difficult to pin down.
  • Reminders of the metropolitan region's prehistoric past are obvious to those who know where to look.
  • There is a haunting prehistoric ritual still conditioned into every human being's reflexes.
  • They argue that mankind's prehistoric penchant for mammoth may have had a discernible effect on climate.
  • prehistoric marine reptiles, both alien and awe-inspiring, at once utterly inhuman and somehow irresistibly compelling.
  • Cave of prehistoric art to be re-opened after microbial infestation.
  • prehistoric humans painted images of the animals on cave walls and carved their likeness in fragments of mammoth tusk.
  • Reconstructing the anatomy of prehistoric sharks isn't easy.
  • The state of prehistoric society may possibly be determined by the examination of cabinets.
  • Freed from commerce, the merry residents of this prehistoric lake bed give gifts and make art and party.
British Dictionary definitions for prehistoric


of or relating to man's development before the appearance of the written word
Derived Forms
prehistorically, adverb
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 prehistoric

1832, modeled on French préhistorique; see pre- + historic.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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