preoccupy

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English[edit]

Etymology[edit]

Borrowing from Middle French préoccuper, from Latin praeoccupo, praeoccupare; synchronically analyzable as pre- +‎ occupy. Doublet of preoccupate, now obsolete.

Pronunciation[edit]

Verb[edit]

preoccupy (third-person singular simple present preoccupies, present participle preoccupying, simple past and past participle preoccupied)

  1. To distract; to occupy or draw attention elsewhere.
    The father tried to preoccupy the child with his keys.

Related terms[edit]

Translations[edit]