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forerunner

[fawr-ruhn-er, fohr-, fawr-ruhn-er, fohr-] /ˈfɔrˌrʌn ər, ˈfoʊr-, fɔrˈrʌn ər, foʊr-/
noun
1.
predecessor; ancestor; forebear; precursor.
2.
an omen, sign, or indication of something to follow; portent:
The warm evenings were a forerunner of summer.
3.
a person who goes or is sent in advance to announce the coming of someone or something that follows; herald; harbinger.
4.
the Forerunner, John the Baptist.
Origin
1250-1300
1250-1300; Middle English forrenner. See fore-, runner
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2014.
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British Dictionary definitions for the forerunner

forerunner

/ˈfɔːˌrʌnə/
noun
1.
a person or thing that precedes another; precursor
2.
a person or thing coming in advance to herald the arrival of someone or something; harbinger
3.
an indication beforehand of something to follow; omen; portent
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 the forerunner
forerunner
c.1300, from fore + runner. M.E. rendition of L. præcursor, in reference to John the Baptist as the forerunner of Christ.
Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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the forerunner in the Bible

John the Baptist went before our Lord in this character (Mark 1:2, 3). Christ so called (Heb. 6:20) as entering before his people into the holy place as their head and guide.

Easton's 1897 Bible Dictionary
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