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Usage statistics for the adverb before:

spoken English63.36%written English36.64%
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The word before is considered to be an easy one, according to the Dale-Chall word list, which includes 3000 words that all fourth-grade American students should know and understand.

Video footage: Heavy Rain Clouds Before A Storm
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Definition of the adverb before

What does before mean as an attribute of something other than a noun?

Before is the 4th most common adverb in the English language.View more statistics!


  1. earlier in time; previously
    • examples: I had known her before | as I said before | he called me the day before but your call had come even earlier
    • synonym of before: earlier
  2. at or in the front
    • example: with the cross of Jesus marching on before
    • synonyms of before: ahead / in front

Alternative definition of the adverb before


  1. at an earlier time
  2. in advance

Other definitions of before

What does before also mean?


  1. in advance of the time when
  2. [informal] rather or sooner than


  1. "Before" is a single by UK electronic music group Pet Shop Boys released as the first single from the group's 1996 album Bilingual. The single, upon its release, peaked at #7 on the UK Singles Chart. In the US, it reached #1 on the U.S. Hot Dance Club Play and reached #7 on the US Bubbling Under Hot 100 Singles chart, equalling #107 on the main U.S. Billboard Hot 100 chart.
  2. "Before" (UK disc 2) is a 1996 single by Pet Shop Boys.
    • released in (19 years ago)
  3. "Before" is an EP by electronic producer Gold Panda, released by Gold Panda himself in September 2009. The track "Heaps" came to prominence when it was used as a beat by American rapper Curren$y for a video by Pitchfork Media leading to Curren$y exclaiming "Give me 16 beats from Gold Panda.
  4. "Before" is a musical album of We Will Be Content.
    • released on
  5. "Before" is a musical EP of Happiness Project.
    • released on (6 years ago)


"Before" is a short story by Gael Baudino written deliberately in a style similar to William Faulkner's: the foreword to the story says, "the sometimes strange syntax and editorial elisions are intentional in this homage to Faulkner." It concerns Greta Harlow, a young woman living in a Lee's Corners, a small town in fictional Oktibushubee County. She is raped and impregnated by Jimmy White, son of a prominent and wealthy businessman. An elderly wealthy woman, Mrs. Gavin, counsels her on how to abort the baby. The story ends with Greta debating whether to follow through with the abortion or not.

  • language: English Language
  • released in (19 years ago)


"Before" is a comedy drama film directed by Nikolai Vanyo.

Printed dictionaries and other books with definitions for Before

Click on a title to look inside that book (if available):

Google previewThe Encyclopedia of Jewish Life Before and During the Holocaust: Seredina-Buda-Z (2001)

by Shmuel Spector, Geoffrey Wigoder

Before. and. During. the. Holocaust. Throughout much of Europe, North Africa, and the Middle East, only fragmentary remnants of once thriving Jewish communities can be found. These communities, many of them ancient, were systematically ...

Google previewThe Wickedly Fun Dictionary of Business - Words That Escaped Me Before My Brain Finished Downloading (2014)

by Jerry Hocutt

A song before it's written. A word before it's spoken. A picture before it's painted. “ The ancestor of every action is a thought.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson threat, n. A promise you won't like, that follows “or else...!” tick tock. Step on it. Time's not on ...

Google previewThe Encyclopedia of Jewish Life Before and During the Holocaust: K-Sered (2001)

by Shmuel Spector, Geoffrey Wigoder

agricultural colony on state land in Attias liquor store, Sarajevo, Yugoslavia, before wwu 1851 and in. 1136 SAN REMO ...

Google previewIrish English Dictionary (1904)

by Patrick Stephen Dinneen

before, in front of, to, for, from; used of time and space, also after notions of fear, dislike, etc.; :5 cash!' ASA") (or 071m) 116m“ , ...

Google previewHarrap's essential English Dictionary (1996)

befall before A beetroot is a round, juicy, dark red root vegetable that is cooked or pickled before eating, and often used in salads. befall /bi'fo:l/ verb (literary): befalls, befalling, befell, befallen Something unlucky or unfortunate befalls you when ...

Google previewThe Royal Standard English Dictionary (1788)

by William Perry

to shame Före'fin'g,ér, s, the finger next the thumb|Före'shôw, v, a to discover before it hapFöre-gā', 'v. a. to go ...

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias with entries for Before

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Usage statistics about before

The following statistics are based on the British National Corpus, so they are representative for the British English from the later part of the 20th century, both spoken and written.

Usage statistics for the adverb before:

spoken English63.36%written English36.64% imaginative writing76.36%informational writing23.64%

Photos about Before

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View more pictures about Before Sunrise and Before the Sun.

If you need related images for an article or a report, you can download stock photos:
Small photo of Death Before DecafSmall photo of Woman's face before and after treatmentSmall photo of Woman's face before and after rejuvenation.Small photo of Before & after treatment with new smile by dentistSmall photo of Before and after make-upSmall photo of baldness man before and afterSmall photo of forehead woman wrinkles before and after More...

Video language resources about Before

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View more videos about Before Leaving, Before the Dawn, Before and After, Age Before Beauty, Pearls Before Swine, Calm Before The Storm, Business Before Pleasure, and Accessory Before the Fact.

See also the pronunciation examples of Before!

Sign language

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Quotes about Before

Wish I can reach
Before the storm

Wish I can feel
Before the rain

Wish I can find
Before the night

Wish I can reach
Before the storm. (Abhinaba Sen)
more quotes about before...

Scrabble value of B3E1F4O1R1E1

The value of this 6-letter word is 11 points. It is included in the first and second editions of the Official Scrabble Players Dictionary.

Anagrams of BEFORE

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