AskDefine | Define primer

Dictionary Definition



1 an introductory textbook
2 any igniter that is used to initiate the burning of a propellant [syn: fuse, fuze, fusee, fuzee, priming]
3 the first or preliminary coat of paint or size applied to a surface [syn: flat coat, ground, priming, primer coat, priming coat, undercoat]

User Contributed Dictionary




  1. A textbook formerly used in primary education to teach the alphabet and other basic concepts.
  2. A single-stranded nucleic acid molecule required for the initiation of replication of a DNA molecule.
  3. Any substance used to start a fire.
  4. A small charge that burns furiously when given sufficient electrical current (Explosive primer) or when struck with force (percussion caps) that ignites the main combustable substances in explosives or ammunition.
  5. A layer of paint designed to underlay a topcoat, used to enhance the adhesion and durability of the topcoat and help in protection of the surface.
  6. A device used to circulate gasoline into the ignition chamber of an engine.

Related terms


textbook formerly used to teach the alphabet
biology: molecule required for replication of DNA
  • Japanese: プライマー
substance used to start a fire
small charge used to ignite gunpowder
layer of paint
device used to circulate gasoline
  • Italian: iniettore
  • Japanese: チョーク




  1. example (something representative of a group)



  1. In the context of "before the noun}}

Extensive Definition

Primer can refer to:
  • Primer (molecular biology), a nucleic acid strand (or related molecule) that serves as a starting point for DNA replication
  • Percussion cap, in ballistics, a small charge that explodes when struck with force or heated with electricity, typically to ignite a larger charge of propellant
  • Explosive primer
  • Primer (paint), a coating applied to a surface to prepare it for paint or another coating or adhesive
  • Primer (textbook), a textbook formerly used in primary education (often pronounced "primmer" in General American) to teach the alphabet and other basic concepts
    • New England Primer, contained moral-themed rhymes associated with the colonial American Puritan culture
  • An old English word for a Book of Hours
  • Primer (film), a 2004 feature film written and directed by Shane Carruth
  • Primer (gasoline engine), a device on some gasoline engines used to prime the engine with gasoline before starting it
  • Great primer, a typefeace about 18 points, or long primer, about 10 points
  • Primer-E Primer, software for statistical analysis of ecological data
primer in German: Primer
primer in French: Primer
primer in Italian: Primer
primer in Dutch: Primer
primer in Japanese: プライマー
primer in Polish: Primer
primer in Vietnamese: Primer
primer in Chinese: 引物

Synonyms, Antonyms and Related Words

abecedarium, abecedary, alphabet, alphabet book, and arithmetic, basics, battledore, blasting cap, cap, casebook, chromogen, coat, coat of paint, coating, color, color filter, color gelatin, colorant, coloring, dead-color, detonating powder, detonator, distemper, drier, dye, dyestuff, electric detonator, elementary education, elements, exercise book, exploder, exterior paint, first principles, first steps, flat coat, flat wash, floor enamel, fulminating mercury, fuse, gradus, grammar, ground, hornbook, induction, initiation, interior paint, introduction, manual, manual of instruction, medium, mercury fulminate, opaque color, outlines, paint, percussion cap, pigment, primacord, prime coat, priming, principia, principles, propaedeutic, reader, reading, rudiments, schoolbook, speller, spelling book, squib, stain, t, tempera, text, thinner, tinction, tincture, transparent color, turpentine, turps, undercoat, undercoating, vehicle, wash, wash coat, workbook, writing
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