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

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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.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Mia Moretti deejayed as partygoers such as Kelly Rutherford and Sheree Hovespian contemplated their bids. Mai Morsch, Vogue, "Artists Eddie Martinez and Sam Moyer Are Celebrated at the Free Arts NYC Auction," 26 Apr. 2019 Rebecca and Miguel contemplate moving cross-country to be closer to Kate and the baby. Jessica Radloff, Glamour, "This Is Us Producers Answer All Your Questions About Kate and Toby's Baby," 13 Mar. 2019 Roethlisberger contemplated retirement in 2017 before deciding to return to action. Michael Middlehurst-schwartz, USA TODAY, "Steelers take QB Mason Rudolph in third round of NFL draft," 27 Apr. 2018 The gargoyles, their bony jaws in their hands, contemplating the most majestic of cities from their perch atop this 12th-century architectural wonder. Ingrid Abramovitch, ELLE Decor, "Notre-Dame Cathedral Symbolizes the Power of Architecture to Transform Lives," 16 Apr. 2019 After a tearful address to his team and his postgame news conference, Hopkins sat in a quiet room still contemplating and fretting about all the things that went wrong in the biggest game of his coaching career. Percy Allen, The Seattle Times, "Huskies’ magic dries up as North Carolina gives UW another early exit from NCAA tournament," 24 Mar. 2019 Worried a caller might make good on a threat, Deproto contemplated not opening Saturday night. Matthew Ormseth, courant.com, "Threats, Bad Reviews, Fake Bookings For Old Saybrook Restaurant After Trump Spokeswoman Was Refused Service At Virginia Eatery With Same Name," 24 June 2018 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

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.

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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

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Statistics for contemplate

Last Updated

9 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for contemplate

The first known use of contemplate was circa 1533

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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.

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Comments on contemplate

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