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[pree-muh-nish-uh n, prem-uh-] /ˌpri məˈnɪʃ ən, ˌprɛm ə-/
a feeling of anticipation of or anxiety over a future event; presentiment:
He had a vague premonition of danger.
a forewarning.
Origin of premonition
late Middle English
1425-75; late Middle English premunicioun (cf. praemunire) < Late Latin praemonitiōn- (stem of praemonitiō) forewarning. See pre-, monition
1. foreboding, portent, omen, sign. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for premonition
  • Ted cleared his throat, and it was just that: not a premonition of speech.
  • We can employ a similar back-of-the-envelope calculation to explain death premonition dreams.
  • My biggest fear as a young lad was a premonition.
  • There is no moon tonight, only the flicker of a gas flare far out in the sea, and the premonition of dawn.
  • That miner, he said, had a premonition that something bad was going to happen.
  • Over the weekend the family learned that his premonition had come true.
  • But before he could finish the thought, a premonition came.
  • There was no premonition of catastrophe.
  • My first premonition of trouble came before we took off.
  • Her son had called weeks before to say he had a premonition that he would be killed.
British Dictionary definitions for premonition


an intuition of a future, usually unwelcome, occurrence; foreboding
an early warning of a future event; forewarning
Derived Forms
premonitory (prɪˈmɒnɪtərɪ; -trɪ) adjective
Word Origin
C16: from Late Latin praemonitiō, from Latin praemonēre to admonish beforehand, from prae before + monēre to warn, advise
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
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Word Origin and History for premonition

mid-15c., from Anglo-French premunition, Middle French premonicion, from Late Latin praemonitionem (nominative praemonitio) "a forewarning," noun of action from past participle stem of Latin praemonere "forewarn," from prae "before" (see pre-) + monere "to warn" (see monitor (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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