1. Nearest in space or position; adjacent: the next room.
2. Immediately following, as in time, order, or sequence: next week; the next item on the list.
1. In the time, order, or place nearest or immediately following: reading this book next; our next oldest child.
2. On the first subsequent occasion: when next I write.
The next person or thing: The next will be better.
1. Adjacent to: the car next to hers.
2. Following in order or degree: Next to skiing, she likes hiking.
3. Almost; practically: next to impossible.
[Middle English nexte, from Old English nīehsta, nēhst, superlative of nēah, near.]
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2022 by HarperCollins Publishers. All rights reserved.
Indo-European & Semitic Roots Appendices
Thousands of entries in the dictionary include etymologies that trace their origins back to reconstructed proto-languages. You can obtain more information about these forms in our online appendices:
The Indo-European appendix covers nearly half of the Indo-European roots that have left their mark on English words. A more complete treatment of Indo-European roots and the English words derived from them is available in our Dictionary of Indo-European Roots.