from The Century Dictionary.

  • noun One despatched in advance to give notice of the approach of another or others.
  • noun plural The scouts, skirmishers, or advance-guard of an army.
  • To announce as by herald; herald.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English.

  • noun A person dispatched before another person or company, to give notice of his or their approach.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License.

  • noun A person dispatched before another person or company, to give notice of his or their approach.


Sorry, no etymologies found.


  • The same front now glanced with many lights, some throwing far forward into the night a fixed and stationary blaze, and others hurrying from one window to another, intimating the bustle and busy preparation preceding their arrival, which had been intimated by an avant-courier.

    The Bride of Lammermoor

  • Thus hard pressed, the Master offered to ride forward to get matters put in such preparation as time and circumstances admitted; but the Marquis protested his kinsman must afford him his company, and would only consent that an avant-courier should carry to the desinted seneschal, Caleb

    The Bride of Lammermoor

  • The _avant-courier_ of the "Annuals" is of equal literary merit with its precursors; but not quite equal in its engravings -- The _Sisters '

    The Mirror of Literature, Amusement, and Instruction Volume 10, No. 288, Supplementary Number

  • Though the Guises pressed their advantage to the utmost in forbidding all future assemblies of heretics, the tumult of Amboise was vaguely felt, in the sultry atmosphere of pent-up passions, to be the avant-courier of a terrific storm.

    The Age of the Reformation

  • Was this the _avant-courier_ of the Hudson's Bay, delayed, like ourselves, by the storm?

    Lords of the North

  • Jerrard was the avant-courier of this novel railroad.

    The Rainy Day Railroad War

  • Your arrival has already been notified to us by the avant-courier of the fashionable intelligence, so that we are well aware, "here laughing lightly," of the distinctive right you have to a hearty welcome in Naples.

    Vendetta: a story of one forgotten

  • Fritz and the canoe on board our boat, so that we might all arrive together; but I yielded to his earnest wish to return alone as he came; he longed to act as our avant-courier, and announce our approach to his mother; so he was soon skimming away over the surface of the water, while we followed at slower rate.

    Swiss Family Robinson

  • Like an avenging spirit, he appeared every day at the same hour, rigid, inflexible, cruel, deaf to supplications and tears, a grim avant-courier of the executioner, selecting his victims and marking them for death.

    Which? or, Between Two Women

  • Weber Hastings acted as guide, or rather avant-courier, since all knew the route that was to be followed.

    The Phantom of the River


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