The cellar, indeed, was filled with crazy lumber, mostly dating from the times of the surgeon who was Jekyll’s predecessor; but even as they opened the door they were advertised of the uselessness of further search, by the fall of a perfect mat of cobweb which had for years sealed up the entrance.
There are no more uses of "predecessor" in the book.
Show samples from other sources
It is my hope that over the years our organization has in some part paid the price for the unspeakable act committed against humanity by our predecessors in government.
James Dashner -- The Death Cure
I couldn’t help but compare Maxon to his predecessor.