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The Complete Vocabulary Builder Workbook



How to pronounce provisional (audio)

Dictionary definition of provisional

Temporary, subject to change, or meant to serve as a placeholder until a more permanent arrangement or decision is made.
"A provisional offer of employment has been made pending routine checks."

Detailed meaning of provisional

When we use the term "provisional," we indicate that a particular condition, document, agreement, or arrangement is not final or definitive, but rather serves as a transitional or preliminary measure. Provisional solutions or agreements are often put in place to address immediate needs or uncertainties while allowing for further consideration or development. For example, a provisional government might be established in a time of political upheaval until a more stable regime can be formed, or a provisional driver's license could be issued to a new driver, which is subject to certain restrictions until they gain more experience. "Provisional" underscores the notion of impermanence and implies that revisions or adjustments may be forthcoming as circumstances evolve or decisions are solidified.

Example sentences containing provisional

1. We'll use the provisional budget until the final one is approved.
2. The agreement is only provisional, pending further negotiations.
3. He accepted the job offer on a provisional basis.
4. The committee made a provisional decision while awaiting more information.
5. The rental car served as a provisional transportation solution.
6. The school provided provisional housing for displaced students.

History and etymology of provisional

The adverb 'provisional' has its origins in Latin. It can be traced back to the Latin word 'provisio,' derived from 'providere,' which means 'to foresee' or 'to provide for.' Etymologically, 'provisional' is linked to the idea of making preparations or providing for a temporary situation. Over time, it evolved to describe something that is temporary, subject to change, or meant to serve as a placeholder until a more permanent arrangement or decision is made. The word's etymology highlights the sense of foresight and preparation inherent in provisional arrangements, suggesting that they are intended to meet immediate needs while allowing for future adjustments or decisions.

Quiz: Find the meaning of provisional

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Further usage examples of provisional

1. The weather forecast is only provisional, so be prepared for changes.
2. They granted provisional approval for the project to move forward.
3. The contract is still provisional until the lawyers review it.
4. Her interim role was provisional until a permanent replacement was found.
5. They offered a provisional solution to the ongoing dispute.
6. The team secured provisional funding for their research.
7. The test results are preliminary and provisional.
8. The doctor prescribed a provisional treatment until further tests could be done.
9. His membership in the club is provisional until he completes the initiation.
10. The repair is only a provisional fix; we'll need a permanent solution later.
11. The company issued a provisional recall of the defective products.
12. The election results are provisional until all votes are counted.
13. They offered a provisional date for the conference, pending venue availability.
14. The visa they issued was provisional, allowing him to stay temporarily.
15. The agreement was provisional and subject to further negotiation.
16. The permit was provisional and would expire in 6 months.
17. The job offer was provisional and would be confirmed after a trial period.
18. The government was provisional and would be replaced after the election.
19. The team's position in the standings was provisional and could change.
20. The budget was provisional and would be reviewed after the first quarter.
21. The ceasefire was provisional and could be broken at any time.
22. The agreement was provisional pending approval by the board.
23. The license was provisional and needed to be renewed annually.
24. The diagnosis was provisional and further tests were needed.
25. The decision was provisional and would be reviewed later.
26. The membership was provisional and would be reviewed after the first year.



temporary, permanent, established, final


TOEFL 14, Advancement and Improvement, Choices and Decisions, Unclear and Uncertain

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