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in anticipation; in advance; ahead of time:
We should have made reservations beforehand. I hope to be beforehand with my report.
Historical Examples

I didn’t mean to let any one see it before-hand, but you are a dear old thing, and you shall.
The Green Satin Gown Laura E. Richards

He shows all to Forster before-hand, and consults him as to plot, characters, etc.
John Forster Percy Hethrington Fitzgerald

The Bishop made a movement, but Holes was before-hand with him.
Punch, or the London Charivari, Vol. 105, August 12th 1893 Various

Only He would warn Eli before-hand, for the old priest was His servant.
The Babe in the Bulrushes Amy Steedman

On p. 274, the word ‘beforehand’ was broken across two lines; it was arbitrarily made ‘beforehand’ rather than ‘before-hand’.
The Works of Alexander Pope, Volume 2 (of 10) Alexander Pope

The Sergeant was before-hand with me in opening the door for her.
The Moonstone Wilkie Collins

It would more encurrege to wed, iff so be one know’d it before-hand, as one may say.
Clarissa, Volume 3 (of 9) Samuel Richardson

He never undertook any thing without consulting him before-hand; and the divine decrees were his only rule.
The Works of John Dryden, Volume XVI. (of 18) John Dryden

Nor can you get before-hand of the Constitution, and do it by anticipation.
American Eloquence, Volume II. (of 4) Various

He was heir to a decent fortune, and of course thought himself justified in spending it before-hand.
The Wits and Beaux of Society Grace Wharton and Philip Wharton

adjective, adverb (postpositive)
early; in advance; in anticipation: she came an hour beforehand
adv., adj.

also before-hand, early 13c., from before + hand, which here is of uncertain signification, unless the original notion is payment in advance or something done before another’s hand does it. Hyphenated from 18c., one word from 19c.


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  • Befouled

    to make dirty or filthy; soil; defile; sully: a bird that befouls its own nest. Historical Examples All commingled, so that the uncleanness of one befouled all, and the wickedness of one contaminated all. Charles Sumner; his complete works, volume 1 (of 20) Charles Sumner Marry, thy jerkin is all befouled with the dust of […]

  • Befriended

    to make friends or become friendly with; act as a friend to; help; aid: to befriend the poor and the weak. Contemporary Examples He befriended Britons Alan and Cindy Thompson, who were on a brief vacation in the Algarve in the summer of 2007. Did He Steal Madeleine McCann? Barbie Latza Nadeau November 27, 2012 […]

  • Befuddlement

    to confuse, as with glib statements or arguments: politicians befuddling the public with campaign promises. to make stupidly drunk. Contemporary Examples One former Media Research Center employee reacted to the news with a deep sense of befuddlement, “I thought everyone knew it.” Ex-Employees of Conservative Figure L. Brent Bozell Say He Didn’t Write His Books […]

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