Definitions

from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • transitive v. To appropriate, seize, or take for oneself before others. See Synonyms at appropriate.
  • transitive v. To take the place of; displace: A special news program preempted the scheduled shows.
  • transitive v. To have precedence or predominance over: Discussion of the water shortage will preempt the other topics on this week's agenda.
  • transitive v. To gain possession of by prior right or opportunity, especially to settle on (public land) so as to obtain the right to buy before others.
  • intransitive v. Games To make a preemptive bid in bridge.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • v. to appropriate something (before someone else does)
  • v. to displace something, or take precedence over something
  • v. to make a preemptive bid at bridge

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • v. To settle upon (public land) with a right of preemption, as under the laws of the United States; to take by preëmption.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • To secure, as land, by preemption; establish a claim to; appropriate.
  • To take up land by preëmption.
  • n. A right to preëmpt; a preëmptive right.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • n. a high bid that is intended to prevent the opposing players from bidding
  • v. make a preemptive bid in the game of bridge
  • v. acquire for oneself before others can do so
  • v. take the place of or have precedence over
  • v. gain possession of by prior right or opportunity, especially so as to obtain the right to buy (land)
  • n. a high bid that is intended to prevent the opposing players from bidding

Etymologies

Back-formation from preemption.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
Back-formation from preemption. (Wiktionary)

Examples

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