contemplate

verb
con·​tem·​plate | \ ˈkän-təm-ˌplāt How to pronounce contemplate (audio) , -ˌtem-\
contemplated; contemplating

Definition of contemplate

transitive verb

1 : to view or consider with continued attention : meditate on contemplate the vastness of the universe contemplated the meaning of the poem
2 : to view as likely or probable or as an end or intention contemplate marriage contemplated a move to Alaska

intransitive verb

: ponder, meditate wanted time to just sit and contemplate

Keep scrolling for more

Other Words from contemplate

contemplator \ ˈkän-​təm-​ˌplā-​tər How to pronounce contemplator (audio) , -​ˌtem \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for contemplate

consider, study, contemplate, weigh mean to think about in order to arrive at a judgment or decision. consider may suggest giving thought to in order to reach a suitable conclusion, opinion, or decision. refused even to consider my proposal study implies sustained purposeful concentration and attention to details and minutiae. study the plan closely contemplate stresses focusing one's thoughts on something but does not imply coming to a conclusion or decision. contemplate the consequences of refusing weigh implies attempting to reach the truth or arrive at a decision by balancing conflicting claims or evidence. weigh the pros and cons of the case

Examples of contemplate in a Sentence

He contemplated the meaning of the poem for a long time. I'd like some time to just sit and contemplate. She stood and quietly contemplated the scene that lay before her.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

SpaceX has been pioneering reusable rockets for years, NASA is contemplating selling its soul to the highest bidder, and a Russian startup is building a nuclear engine for future rockets. Avery Thompson, Popular Mechanics, "Space Startup Apollo Fusion Wants To Use Mercury as a Fuel—Report," 20 Nov. 2018 The White House was contemplating bypassing Congress and attempting to cut capital gains taxes (taxes imposed when an investor sells an asset, such as a stock). Emily Stewart, Vox, "Trump says there’s another tax cut on the way. We have no idea what he’s talking about.," 21 Oct. 2018 The development suggests Mueller is contemplating the end of his work and farming out any potentially outstanding prosecutions to other parts of the Justice Department. Devlin Barrett, Washington Post, "Mueller signals outside prosecutors may eventually take over Russian trolls case," 22 June 2018 These gentlemen are ready to fill orders for any number of brick and invite those who contemplate building to give them a call. Arthur Hart, idahostatesman, "When fires hit the area in late 19th century, brick’s foundation took hold in Boise," 16 June 2018 Similarly, season two contains dangerous material for at-risk individuals who might be contemplating violent acts of their own. De Elizabeth, Teen Vogue, ""13 Reasons Why" Season 2's School Shooting Plot Presents a Dangerous "What If?"," 21 May 2018 Booker, who is openly contemplating a 2020 bid, campaigns for South Carolina Democrats on Thursday. Juana Summers, The Seattle Times, "2020 Democrats building ties to power brokers in key states," 15 Oct. 2018 Baez said that Hernandez’s note addressed to him showed no indication the former NFL star was contemplating suicide. Katherine Lam, Fox News, "Aaron Hernandez's suicide notes to lawyer, fiancée and daughter revealed," 19 Aug. 2018 The news that Jordan was contemplating a move was first reported by The New York Times' Marc Stein. Charlotte Carroll, SI.com, "Report: DeAndre Jordan Will Opt Out of Clippers Contract," 28 June 2018

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'contemplate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

See More

First Known Use of contemplate

circa 1533, in the meaning defined at transitive sense 1

History and Etymology for contemplate

Latin contemplatus, past participle of contemplari, from com- + templum space marked out for observation of auguries — more at temple

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about contemplate

Statistics for contemplate

Last Updated

11 Apr 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for contemplate

The first known use of contemplate was circa 1533

See more words from the same year

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for contemplate

contemplate

verb

English Language Learners Definition of contemplate

: to think deeply or carefully about (something)
: to think deeply
: to think about doing (something)

contemplate

verb
con·​tem·​plate | \ ˈkän-təm-ˌplāt How to pronounce contemplate (audio) \
contemplated; contemplating

Kids Definition of contemplate

1 : to look at with careful and thoughtful attention
2 : to think about deeply and carefully
3 : to have in mind : plan on Maybe we should contemplate a trip to Europe.

Keep scrolling for more

Comments on contemplate

What made you want to look up contemplate? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).

WORD OF THE DAY

not to be persuaded, moved, or stopped

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

Words from Greek and Latin Quiz

  • roman forum
  • Which of the following months comes from a Latin word for “ten”?
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

TAKE THE QUIZ
Citation

Test Your Knowledge - and learn some interesting things along the way.

TAKE THE QUIZ
Love words? Need even more definitions?

Subscribe to America's largest dictionary and get thousands more definitions and advanced search—ad free!