Why was clemency trending last week?


[prahy-mee-vuh l] /praɪˈmi vəl/
of or relating to the first age or ages, especially of the world:
primeval forms of life.
Also, primaeval.
Origin of primeval
1765-75; < Latin prīmaev(us) young (prīm(us) prime + aev(um) age + -us adj. suffix) + -al1
Related forms
primevally, adverb
Can be confused
primal, primeval, primordial.
primary, primordial, pristine. See prime. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
Cite This Source
Examples from the web for primeval
  • In addition to expanding the known limits of snake biology, the ancient serpent contains clues to primeval rain forest climate.
  • The poet skillfully mixes the concrete metaphors of the primeval theme with metaphysical imagery.
  • In the rather more primeval bubbling of a moka, things aren't so precise.
  • They will fill out an empty bed with primeval-looking foliage.
  • The mats he's talking about are one of the signs of primeval Earth.
  • It's a primeval landscape, raw and unspoiled and faintly threatening.
  • One of them is the last fragment of primeval forest in Europe.
  • It's like waking up from some primeval nightmare.
  • Take for example the tomb of the primeval kings.
  • They might incline at first to refer the construction of such stupendous works to some superhuman powers of the primeval world.
British Dictionary definitions for primeval


of or belonging to the first age or ages, esp of the world
Derived Forms
primevally, primaevally, adverb
Word Origin
C17: from Latin prīmaevus youthful, from prīmus first + aevum age
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
Cite This Source
Word Origin and History for primeval

also primaeval, 1650s, with -al (1) + Latin primaevus "early in life, youthful," from primus "first" (see prime (adj.)) + aevum "an age" (see eon).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
Cite This Source

Word of the Day

Difficulty index for primeval

Some English speakers likely know this word

Word Value for primeval

Scrabble Words With Friends

Quotes with primeval