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

Keep scrolling for more

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

Visit the Thesaurus for More 

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.
See More

Recent Examples on the Web

After more than a day of deliberation, jurors found Watkins Sr. Ivana Hrynkiw |,, "Donald Watkins Sr. and Jr. to be sentenced Tuesday for fraud crimes," 14 July 2019 The jury found Lin guilty of kidnapping for ransom, a felony that carries a sentence of seven years to life in prison, following five hours of deliberation. Nico Savidge, The Mercury News, "‘Mastermind’ of 1995 Hillsborough kidnapping found guilty," 12 July 2019 After months of deliberation, TLC has decided to officially cancel '19 Kids and Counting'. Hannah Yasharoff, USA TODAY, "Joy-Anna Duggar reveals second-trimester miscarriage in heartbreaking post," 4 July 2019 After a three-day trial and nine hours of deliberation, there was a verdict: guilty of first-degree murder. CBS News, ""To the families we owe justice": Inside NCIS' relentless quest to solve two cold case murders of Navy dependents," 3 July 2019 On Friday, a jury in Manhattan found Mr. Gilbert guilty of second-degree murder, rejecting an insanity defense after two days of deliberation. New York Times, "Princeton Graduate Found Guilty of Killing Father Over Allowance," 28 June 2019 But then a major victory in Washington: The Energy Department decided to participate in the project after years of deliberation. Russell Gold, WSJ, "Building the Wind Turbines Was Easy. The Hard Part Was Plugging Them In," 22 June 2019 The jurors returned the verdict after about two hours of deliberation following three days of testimony in a trial before U.S. District Court Michael H. Simon., "Jury finds in favor of former Oregon prison doctor, who was accused of sexually abusing 3 inmates," 21 June 2019 On June 11th his trial, which has been closely watched at the liberal end of America’s religious spectrum, reached deadlock after jurors failed to agree despite three days of deliberation. The Economist, "The gripping case of Scott Warren," 14 June 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.

See More

First Known Use of deliberation

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

History and Etymology for deliberation

see deliberate entry 2

Keep scrolling for more

Learn More about deliberation

Statistics for deliberation

Last Updated

18 Jul 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for deliberation

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

See more words from the same century

Keep scrolling for more

More Definitions for deliberation



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

Keep scrolling for more

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).


an act or instance of editing or removing

Get Word of the Day daily email!

Test Your Vocabulary

What's that Smell?! Quiz

  • wide eyed dog smelling rose
  • Someone who is hircine smells like a:
Name That Thing

Test your visual vocabulary with our 10-question challenge!

Syn City

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

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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