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PRECEDENCE. The right of being first placed in a certain order, the first rank being supposed the most honorable.
     2. In this country no precedence is given by law to men.
     3. Nations, in their intercourse with each other, do not admit any precedence; hence in their treaties in one copy one is named first, and the other in the other. In some cases of officers when one must of necessity act as the chief, the oldest in commission will have precedence; as when the president of a court is not present, the associate who has the oldest commission will have a precedence; or if their. commissions bear the same date, then the oldest man.
     4. In. the, army and navy there is an order of precedence which regulates the officers in their command.

A Law Dictionary, Adapted to the Constitution and Laws of the United States. By John Bouvier. Published 1856.
References in periodicals archive ?
as it applies itself to things which precede and are better, wherefore
A member of a group for less than half the number of days of the tax year that precede December 31, even if it is a member on December 31; 2.
In studies of past foreshocks, seismologists have not succeeded in detecting any discriminating characteristic that could serve as the basis for identifying which jolt precedes a larger quake.
But other types of magnetic activity, which take place at higher latitudes - closer to the poles - precede sunspot formation, Altrock asserts.
If they can establish that certain noticeable patterns of magnetic signals precede quakes, then magnetometers might prove to be useful tools for predicting an earthquake months to days ahead of time.