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to start with

Also, to begin with . In the first place, initially, as in We'll notify him by e-mail to start with , or To begin with, they haven't paid their taxes in years . The first term dates from the second half of the 1800s, the variant from the mid-1500s. Also see for openers
The American Heritage® Idioms Dictionary
Copyright © 2002, 2001, 1995 by Houghton Mifflin Company. Published by Houghton Mifflin Company.
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