Meaning of PRELIMINARY in English

[pre.lim.i.nary] n, pl -nar.ies [F preliminaires, pl., fr. ML praeliminaris, adj., preliminary, fr. L prae- pre- + limin-, limen threshold] (1656): something that precedes or is introductory or preparatory: as a: a preliminary scholastic examination b pl, Brit: front matter c: a preliminary heat or trial (as of a race) d: a minor match preceding the main event (as of a boxing card)

[2]preliminary adj (ca. 1667): coming before and usu. forming a necessary prelude to something else -- adv

Merriam-Webster English vocab.      Английский словарь Merriam Webster.