earliest adj : (comparative and superlative of `early') more early than; most early; "a fashion popular in earlier times"; "his earlier work reflects the influence of his teacher"; "Verdi's earliest and most raucous opera" [syn: earlier] adv : with the least delay; "the soonest I can arrive is 3 P.M." [syn: soonest]early adj
1 at or near the beginning of a period of time or course of events or before the usual or expected time; "early morning"; "an early warning"; "early diagnosis"; "an early death"; "took early retirement"; "an early spring"; "early varieties of peas and tomatoes mature before most standard varieties" [ant: middle, late]
2 being or occurring at an early stage of development; "in an early stage"; "early forms of life"; "early man"; "an early computer" [ant: late]
3 of the distant past; "the early inhabitants of Europe"; "former generations"; "in other times" [syn: early(a), former(a), other(a)]
4 very young; "at an early age"
5 of an early stage in the development of a language or literature; "the Early Hebrew alphabetical script is that used mainly from the 11th to the 6th centuries B.C."; "Early Modern English is represented in documents printed from 1476 to 1700" [ant: middle, late]
6 expected in the near future; "look for an early end to the negotiations" adv
1 during an early stage; "early on in her career" [syn: early on]
2 before the usual time or the time expected; "she graduated early"; "the house was completed ahead of time" [syn: ahead of time, too soon] [ant: late]
3 in good time; "he awoke betimes that morning" [syn: betimes] [also: earliest, earlier]earliest See early
- Superlative of early.