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a prelude to (something)

An introductory event or action. The economic troubles of these companies were just a prelude to the global financial meltdown that would the following year. We regard these acts of aggression as a prelude to war.
See also: prelude

prelude to something

an act or event that comes before and signals another act or event. Her rudeness to her boss was a prelude to her resignation. The Munich Pact was a prelude to World War II.
See also: prelude
References in classic literature ?
Pianist, thereupon, starts prelude to the Admiral's song, and Harris, seizing what he considers to be a favourable opening in the music, begins.
The chief landmarks in the poem are as follows: after the first 103 lines, which contain at least three distinct preludes, three primeval beings are introduced, Chaos, Earth, and Eros -- here an indefinite reproductive influence.
But Solomon was already impatient to prelude again, and presently broke with much spirit into "Sir Roger de Coverley", at which there was a sound of chairs pushed back, and laughing voices.
The audience felt that a startling revelation was to follow this ominous prelude.
To be called into notice in such a manner, to hear that it was but the prelude to something so infinitely worse, to be told that she must do what was so impossible as to act; and then to have the charge of obstinacy and ingratitude follow it, enforced with such a hint at the dependence of her situation, had been too distressing at the time to make the remembrance when she was alone much less so, especially with the superadded dread of what the morrow might produce in continuation of the subject.
All were silent, expectant of what was to follow, for this was dearly only a prelude.
In Wordsworth's prefatory advertisement to the first edition of The Prelude, published in 1850, it is stated that that work was intended to be introductory to The Recluse: and that The Recluse, if completed, would have consisted of three parts.
As if fames were the relics of seditions past; but they are no less, indeed, the preludes of seditions to come.
The preludes, while following the established trend of writing one prelude in each of the major and minor keys, also employ 20th-century compositional techniques such as planing, quartal and quintal harmonies, unmetered pieces, feathered beam accelerando and time brackets.
1 November 2017 - Georgia, US-based fertility company Prelude Fertility has agreed to acquire Tennessee, US-based fertility management company Vivere Health and its flagship partner, the Houston Fertility Institute (HFI), as part of its network expansion, the company said.
Prelude to a Dream is a new age solo piano album featuring eleven original songs by talented music artist Shoshana Michel.
Shells floating liquefied natural gas (FLNG) facility Prelude has officially entered into Lloyd's Register class.
The upcoming new IP has the working title "Project Prelude Rune" and it will be a role-playing game (RPG) that will be developed by a new studio.
For example, Leikin describes as Gothic the eleven repeated sf bass notes in the A-flat Major Prelude, which according to Chopin represented "the sound of an old clock in the castle which strikes the eleventh hour" (p.
Drydocks World has completed the world's largest turret mooring system - part of a vast floating LNG facility for SBM Offshore, Technip and Shell at the Prelude gas field off northwest Australia.