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antecedent (n.)

late 14c. in grammar ("noun to which a pronoun refers") and in logic ("if A is, then B is;" A is the antecedent, B the consequent), from Old French antecedent (14c.) or directly from Latin antecedentem (nominative antecedens), noun use of present participle of antecedere "go before, precede," from ante "before" (from PIE root *ant- "front, forehead," with derivatives meaning "in front of, before") + cedere "to yield" (from PIE root *ked- "to go, yield").

Hence "an event upon which another follows" (1610s). As an adjective in English from c. 1400. Related: Antecedently.

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Definitions of antecedent from WordNet
1
antecedent (n.)
someone from whom you are descended (but usually more remote than a grandparent);
Synonyms: ancestor / ascendant / ascendent / root
antecedent (n.)
a preceding occurrence or cause or event;
antecedent (n.)
anything that precedes something similar in time;
phrenology was an antecedent of modern neuroscience
Synonyms: forerunner
antecedent (n.)
the referent of an anaphor; a phrase or clause that is referred to by an anaphoric pronoun;
2
antecedent (adj.)
preceding in time or order;
From wordnet.princeton.edu