a person or thing that begins.
a person who has begun a course of instruction or is learning the fundamentals:
swimming for beginners.
a person who is inexperienced; novice.
Contemporary Examples

When she started practicing, we had her on a 15- or 20-pound bow, which is pretty heavy for a beginner.
‘Catching Fire’: How Jennifer Lawrence Learned to Shoot a Bow and Arrow Kevin Fallon November 25, 2013

And the whole project looked to be that of a beginner over-reaching.
Kanye West’s Paris Flop Robin Givhan October 1, 2011

“We might have to wait and do further lessons after the election,” Pell says lightheartedly, himself a beginner.
Figure Skater Michelle Kwan Chases Gold in Rhode Island’s Gubernatorial Race Nicholas McCarvel April 16, 2014

Historical Examples

Although only a beginner, he was already recognized as an artist of great talent.
Lucretia Borgia Ferdinand Gregorovius

A beginner should have his saddle set well back on the spring.
Harper’s Young People, June 22, 1880 Various

Because it is more musical and harmonious in sound, and makes the structure of Latin verse clear even to the beginner.
Latin Pronunciation Harry Thurston Peck

For the beginner it is not safe to make a hull less than 1/2 inch in thickness.
Boys’ Book of Model Boats Raymond Francis Yates

I was a mere bungler, a beginner beside her; she even sang a charming little chanson.
Esther Rosa Nouchette Carey

This is one of our most abundant mushrooms, and the easiest for the beginner to identify.
The Mushroom, Edible and Otherwise M. E. Hard

Pretty well, I think, for a beginner, remarked Mr. Bolter complacently.
Oliver Twist, Vol. III (of 3) Charles Dickens

a person who has just started to do or learn something; novice

early 14c., “founder,” agent noun from begin. Meaning “novice” is from late 15c. Beginner’s luck is from 1897.


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  • Beginner’s luck

    the initial good fortune or success commonly supposed to come to a person who has recently taken up a new pursuit, as a sport or game: Catching a large trout the first time you go fishing is simply beginner’s luck. Good fortune in a first attempt or effort, as in I often use a brand-new […]

  • Beginning

    an act or circumstance of entering upon an action or state: the beginning of hostilities. the point of time or space at which anything begins: the beginning of the Christian era; the beginning of the route. the first part: the beginning of the book; the beginning of the month. Often, beginnings. the initial stage or […]

  • Beginning rhyme

    the repetition of consonant sounds at the beginning of words; alliteration, as in The fair breeze blew, the white foam flew.

  • Begird

    to gird about; encompass; surround. Historical Examples I honestly believe that his performance would beat down the frigid steel ramparts that begird the English “lady.” Nights in London Thomas Burke E’er shall avail her neck to begird with yesterday’s ribband. The Carmina of Caius Valerius Catullus Caius Valerius Catullus verb (transitive) (poetic) -girds, -girding, -girt, […]

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