• At a time in advance of the usual or expected event.
  • Arriving a time before expected; sooner than on time.
  • Near the start or beginning.
  • Near the start of the day.
  • Having begun to occur; in its early stages.
  • Of a star or class of stars, hotter than the sun.


  • A shift (scheduled work period) that takes place early in the day.



Similar words

Opposite words


  • From Middle English erly, erlich, earlich, from Old English ǣrlīċ, ārlīċ, equivalent to ere + -ly. Compare Old English ǣrne, West Frisian earen.
  • From Middle English erly, orely, arely, erliche, arliche, from Old English ǣrlīċe, ārlīċe, equivalent to ere + -ly. Cognate with Old Norse árliga, árla ( > Danish årle, Swedish arla, Norwegian årle, Faroese árla).

Modern English dictionary

Explore and search massive catalog of over 900,000 word meanings.

Word of the Day

Get a curated memorable word every day.

Challenge yourself

Level up your vocabulary by setting personal goals.

And much more

Try out Vedaist now.