penultimate [pi-nuhl-tuh-mit] ExamplesWord Origin adjective

  1. next to the last: the penultimate scene of the play.
  2. of or relating to a penult or the next to the last syllable in a word: In the word appropriate, -pri- is the penultimate syllable.


  1. a penult.

Origin of penultimate First recorded in 1670–80; see origin at penult, ultimate Can be confusedlast penultimate ultimate Examples from the Web for penultimate Contemporary Examples of penultimate

  • But then that big bang that ended the penultimate episode happened.

    Inside ‘Orange Is the New Black’ S2, Eps. 6-12: About That Shocking Incest Scene

    Kevin Fallon, Marlow Stern

    June 20, 2014

  • And on the penultimate episode of The Bachelor, Assistant District Attorney Andi became the second to reject him.

    Andi Wins ‘The Bachelor’ by Dumping Juan Pablo

    Brandy Zadrozny

    February 26, 2014

  • Just look at the penultimate symbol of urban renaissance, Brooklyn.

    The Revolt Against Urban Gentry

    Joel Kotkin

    November 30, 2013

  • The penultimate episode of the series found Walter White (Bryan Cranston) alone in a New Hampshire cabin.

    ‘Breaking Bad’ Meets ‘Mr. Magorium’s Wonder Emporium’… And It Is Glorious

    Amy Zimmerman

    September 25, 2013

  • The penultimate band is $200,000 to $250,000, which is ten times as wide as the previous band.

    Department of Awful Statistics: Income Inequality Edition

    Megan McArdle

    February 6, 2013

  • Historical Examples of penultimate

  • Is it the ultimate, or is it only the penultimate, datum of cognition?

    Blackwood’s Edinburgh Magazine, Volume 62, No. 382, October 1847


  • And so it was with Cicero during this the penultimate year of his life.

    The Life of Cicero

    Anthony Trollope

  • There he commenced ‘Count Robert of Paris,’ the penultimate of his published tales.



  • Verbs with mag- of this sort always have penultimate stress.

    A Dictionary of Cebuano Visayan

    John U. Wolff

  • In the former the last whorl is broadest, in the latter the penultimate.

    Our British Snails

    John William Horsley

  • British Dictionary definitions for penultimate penultimate adjective

    1. next to the last


    1. anything that is next to the last, esp a penult

    Word Origin for penultimate C17: from Latin paene almost + ultimate, on the model of Latin paenultimus Word Origin and History for penultimate adj.

    1670s, from penultima (n.) on model of proximate.

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