adjective num. ord. “the first,” in foll. meanings:

  1. the first, foremost, former Snp.93, Snp.436, Snp.1031; Ja.ii.110; Kp-a.i.192; Dhp-a.iii.5, Dhp-a.iii.196 (˚vaya, contrasted with majjhima & pacchima); Pv-a.5, Pv-a.13, Pv-a.56.
  2. nt. acc. paṭhamaṃ at first, for the first time Vin.i.16; DN.ii.14; Dhp.158; Ja.i.222; Ja.ii.103, Ja.ii.153;
  3. often as first part of cpd. ˚-, meaning either “first” or “recently, newly, just” Vin.i.1 (˚âbhisambuddha having just attained Buddhaship); DN.iii.253 (˚âbhinibbatta), Snp.420 (˚uppattika “in his first youth”) Ja.iii.394 (˚uggata newly sprung up)

■ A second compar formation is paṭhamatara, only as adv. ˚ṃ at the (very) first, as early as possible, first of all Vin.i.30;; Dhp-a.i.138; Vv-a.230; Pv-a.93.

Ved. prathama, cp. Av. fratəma; also Ved. prataraṃ further, Gr. πρότερος superl. formation fr. prep. *pro, Sk. pra etc. see pa˚