Pronunciation: (prī'ur),[key] —adj. 1. preceding in time or in order; earlier or former; previous: A prior agreement prevents me from accepting this. 2. preceding in importance or privilege.
3. prior to, preceding; before: Prior to that time, buffalo had roamed the Great Plains in tremendous numbers.
—n. Informal.a prior conviction.
Pronunciation: (prī'ur),[key] —n. 1. an officer in a monastic order or religious house, sometimes next in rank below an abbot.
2. a chief magistrate, as in the medieval republic of Florence.
Pronunciation: (prī'ur),[key] —n. Matthew, 1664–1721, English poet.