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pri·mal / ˈprīməl/ • adj. essential; fundamental: for me, writing is a primal urge. ∎  relating to an early stage in evolutionary development; primeval: primal hunting societies. ∎  Psychol. of, relating to, or denoting the needs, fears, or behavior that are postulated (esp. in Freudian theory) to form the origins of emotional life: he preys on people's primal fears. See also primal scene.DERIVATIVES: pri·mal·ly adv.

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