KJV Dictionary Definition: prefer


PREFER', v.t. L. proefero; proe, before, and fero, to bear or carry.

1. Literally, to bear or carry in advance, in the mind, affections or choice; hence, to regard more than another; to honor or esteem above another.

It is sometimes followed by above, before, or to.

If I prefer not Jerusalem above my chief joy. Ps.137.

He that cometh after me, is preferred before me. John 1.

2. To advance, as to an office or dignity; to raise; to exalt; as, to prefer one to a bishopric; to prefer an officer to the rank of general.

3. To offer; to present; to exhibit; usually with solemnity, or to a public body. It is our privilege to enjoy the right of preferring petitions to rulers for redress of wrongs.

My vows and prayers to thee preferred.

Prefer a bill against all kings and parliaments since the conquest.

4. To offer or present ceremoniously, or in ordinary familiar language.

He spake, and to her hand preferr'd the bowl.

This is allowable, at least in poetry, though not usual.


PREF'ERABLE, a. Worthy to be preferred or chosen before something else; more eligible; more desirable. Virtue is far preferable to vice, even for its pleasures in this life.

1. More excellent; of better quality; as, Madeira wine is preferable to claret.


PREF'ERABLENESS, n. The quality or state of being preferable.


PREF'ERABLY, adv. In preference; in such a manner as to prefer one thing to another.

How comes he to choose Plautus preferably to Terance?


PREF'ERENCE, n. The act of preferring one thing before another; estimation of one thing above another; choice of one thing rather than another.

Leave the critics on either side to contend about the preference due to this or that sort of poetry.

It has to, above, before, or over, before the thing postponed. All men give the preference to Homer as an epic poet. The human body has the preference above or before those of brutes.

The knowledge of things alone gives a value to our reasonings,and preference of one man's knowledge over another's.


PREFER'MENT, n. Advancement to a higher office, dignity or station. Change of manners and even of character often follows preferment. A profligate life should be considered a disqualification for preferment, no less than want of ability.

1. Superior place or office. All preferments should be given to competent men.

2. Preference. Not used.


PREFER'RED, pp. Regarded above others; elevated in station.


PREFER'RING, ppr. Regarding above others; advancing to a higher station; offering; presenting.