What is the meaning of first?


  • The first or highest in an ordering or series.
    • usage: "He wanted to be the first"
  • The first element in a countable series.
    • usage: "the first of the month"
  • The time at which something is supposed to begin.
    • usage: "they got an early start"; "she knew from the get-go that he was the man for her"
  • The fielding position of the player on a baseball team who is stationed at first of the bases in the infield (counting counterclockwise from home plate.
  • An honours degree of the highest class.
  • The lowest forward gear ratio in the gear box of a motor vehicle; used to start a car moving.


  • Preceding all others in time or space or degree.
    • usage: "the first house on the right"; "the first day of spring"; "his first political race"; "her first baby"; "the first time"; "the first meetings of the new party"; "the first phase of his training"
  • Indicating the beginning unit in a series.
  • Serving to set in motion.
    • usage: "the magazine's inaugural issue"; "the initiative phase in the negotiations"; "an initiatory step toward a treaty"; "his first (or maiden) speech in Congress"; "the liner's maiden voyage"
  • Serving to begin.
    • usage: "the beginning canto of the poem"; "the first verse"
  • Ranking above all others.
    • usage: "was first in her class"; "the foremost figure among marine artists"; "the top graduate"
  • Highest in pitch or chief among parts or voices or instruments or orchestra sections.
    • usage: "first soprano"; "the first violin section"; "played first horn"


  • Before anything else.
    • usage: "first we must consider the garter snake"
  • The initial time.
    • usage: "when Felix first saw a garter snake"
  • Before another in time, space, or importance.
    • usage: "I was here first"; "let's do this job first"
  • Prominently forward.
    • usage: "he put his best foot foremost"
|7 years ago|1.8k views|share |citing 
APAWordNet. (2010). first. Retrieved August 20, 2018, from http://smartdefine.org/first/definitions/1174152
ChicagoWordNet. 2010. "first" http://smartdefine.org/first/definitions/1174152 (accessed August 20, 2018).
HarvardWordNet 2010, first, Smart Define, viewed 20 August, 2018, <http://smartdefine.org/first/definitions/1174152>.
MLAWordNet. "first" 23 October 2010. Web. 20 August 2018. <http://smartdefine.org/first/definitions/1174152>
{ class="autoclick" }next definition (/)