1. Manifesting or characterized by development, aptitude, or interests considered advanced for a given age: a mathematically precocious child; a child with a precocious wit.
2. Botany Blossoming before the appearance of leaves.
[From Latin praecox, praecoc-, premature, from praecoquere, to boil before, ripen early : prae-, pre- + coquere, to cook, ripen; see pekw- in the Appendix of Indo-European roots.]
pre·cocity (-kŏsĭ-tē), pre·cocious·ness n.
The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fifth Edition copyright ©2020 by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. 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.