In the particular context that I'm in, I was writing about several lines of programming. For simplicity, let's call them:

line a
line b

First, I described line a. Great. Then I wanted to write about line b, but couldn't think of the way to describe the relationship between b and a. The closest I could think of was "follows", but to say "the following line" is ambiguous: it can refer to either the line of code after line a, or it can imply that I'm going to copy and paste line b into my text and reference it there (which was not the case).

I ended up saying something to the effect of "line a precedes some code that...", but was wondering:

If line a "precedes" line b, then what is the proper and unambiguous term for the relationship between line b, relative to line a? Postcede?

  • 7
    Succeed or follow. Online thesaurus.
    – Mitch
    Jun 28, 2011 at 23:31
  • Parliament is changing the law. Now, the eldest child (of either gender) will succeed the monarch.
    – GEdgar
    Nov 12, 2011 at 22:59

6 Answers 6


Line B is preceded by Line A.

Line A is followed by Line B.

EDIT after the first comment:

To make it active, you can try:

Line B follows Line A.

Alternatively, you could say:

Line B comes after Line A.

  • Ah, I like "comes after". What about an adjective form? Jun 28, 2011 at 23:41
  • 3
    What exactly do you mean? I think you're looking for "the preceding line" and "the following line", or alternatively, "the succeeding line".
    – Frantisek
    Jun 28, 2011 at 23:44
  • comes immediately after? immediately follows, or similar? :)
    – rogerdpack
    Jun 18, 2021 at 17:24

The most natural-sounding way you could say it (other than using "follows") is probably: "is next after".

If "line A" precedes "line B", "line B" is/comes next after "line A".

"Succeed" is the technical antonym to "precede", but "line B succeeds line A" does not sound as natural.

Then again, though you discarded the term "follows", it may turn out to be a good choice.

  • 4
    predecessor/successor ... follower has another meaning
    – GEdgar
    Jun 28, 2011 at 23:56

Antecede is synonymous with precede (http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/antecede). I believe the proper "mirror word" to precede is succeed. This usage is most commonly seen in the form predecessor/successor, but it's perfectly valid to say that line a precedes line b and line b succeeds line a.

  • 1
    Welcome to the site, but your suggestion of succeed has already been given and the commentary about antecede would be more suitable as a comment, not an answer. If you are new to Stack Exchange, I encourage you to visit the Help Center— this is a Q&A site, not a discussion forum.
    – choster
    Dec 20, 2013 at 20:28

From etymological view "succeed" is antonym for "precede" but at least in oxforddictionaries.com this meaning is last meaning in modern English which in this sense synonyms are "follow", "come after", "follow after".


"Subsequent" is a fitting antonym to precede.

  • 5
    How fitting can it be as it isn't even a verb?
    – choster
    Jan 13, 2014 at 22:39

I see the question the inquirer is driving at. The word "precede" means to walk "in advance of" or "in front of". He/she is asking if there is a mirror word (presumably utilizing the root word "cede"), for "precede". A single word that means, essentially, "to walk behind" or "to follow", or "the last in a train of..."

That word, dear asker, is not "postcede", though I see your logic, but "antecede".


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