de·​lib·​er·​a·​tion | \ di-ˌli-bə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce deliberation (audio) \

Definition of deliberation

1a : the act of thinking about or discussing something and deciding carefully : the act of deliberating After careful deliberation, he decided to study medicine rather than law.
b : a discussion and consideration by a group of persons (such as a jury or legislature) of the reasons for and against a measure The jury returned a verdict after a four-hour deliberation.
2 : the quality or state of being deliberate spoke with clarity and deliberation worked with deliberation on the painting

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Other Words from deliberation

deliberative \ di-​ˈli-​bə-​ˌrā-​tiv How to pronounce deliberative (audio) , -​ˈli-​b(ə-​)rə-​ \ adjective
deliberatively adverb
deliberativeness noun

Synonyms & Antonyms for deliberation


account, advisement, consideration, debate, reflection, study, thought


short shrift

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Examples of deliberation in a Sentence

After hours of deliberation, the council came to a decision. Jury deliberations lasted two days. She spoke to the audience with clarity and deliberation.
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Recent Examples on the Web

In the earlier cases, jury deliberations lasted for weeks as well. Aruna Viswanatha, WSJ, "Ex-Blackwater Guard Goes to Trial for Third Time in Less Than Five Years," 5 Nov. 2018 The announcement came on Friday, the second day of jury deliberations and one day after the conclusion of Van Dyke’s trial. P.r. Lockhart, Vox, "Jason Van Dyke found guilty of second-degree murder for 2014 shooting of Laquan McDonald," 5 Oct. 2018 Rudd, now 76, was convicted Monday of first-degree murder after a weeklong trial in Cook County and about three hours of jury deliberations. George Houde,, "Donnie Rudd guilty of killing wife in ’73, making it look like car crash; likely to spend rest of life in prison," 2 July 2018 Last year, after more than 52 hours of jury deliberations over six days, the judge declared a mistrial. Crimesider Staff, CBS News, "Jury selection begins in Bill Cosby retrial amid #Metoo movement," 2 Apr. 2018 The trial wrapped up with guilty verdicts following about two hours of jury deliberations Tuesday afternoon. Ashley Remkus,, "Judge won't grant new trial for woman convicted of raping 11-year-old autistic boy," 30 Mar. 2018 Jury deliberations were scheduled to resume Thursday morning. Nick Swedberg, Lake County News-Sun, "Jurors in case of Zion cop who killed teen Justus Howell to continue deliberations for third day," 14 Mar. 2018 The trial spanned four days -- including jury deliberations. Aimee Green,, "Jury awards $1.7 million to man after nurse yells at him to stop rolling car," 5 Mar. 2018 The team’s plans going forward are more expansive, according to seven aides and allies involved with the effort, most of whom spoke on the condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak publicly about private deliberations. Zeke Miller, The Seattle Times, "Mueller report reprieve becomes Trump’s re-election weapon," 25 Mar. 2019

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'deliberation.' 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 deliberation

14th century, in the meaning defined at sense 1a

History and Etymology for deliberation

see deliberate entry 2

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Statistics for deliberation

Last Updated

25 Apr 2019

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Time Traveler for deliberation

The first known use of deliberation was in the 14th century

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English Language Learners Definition of deliberation

: careful thought or discussion done in order to make a decision
: the quality of being slow and careful


de·​lib·​er·​a·​tion | \ di-ˌli-bə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce deliberation (audio) \

Kids Definition of deliberation

1 : careful thought : consideration Still, she thought after quite a long deliberation, it was probably all right to tell her children …— Robert C. O'Brien, Rats of NIMH
2 : the quality of being deliberate He spoke with great deliberation.


de·​lib·​er·​a·​tion | \ di-ˌli-bə-ˈrā-shən How to pronounce deliberation (audio) \

Legal Definition of deliberation

1a : the act of deliberating — compare premeditation
b : a discussion and consideration by a group of persons (as a jury or legislature) of the reasons for or against a measure
2 : the quality or state of being deliberate killing with deliberation

Other Words from deliberation

deliberative \ dē-​ˈli-​bə-​ˌrā-​tiv, -​brə-​tiv How to pronounce deliberative (audio) \ adjective

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Comments on deliberation

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


having no equal

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