ponder

verb
pon·​der | \ ˈpän-dər How to pronounce ponder (audio) \
pondered; pondering\ ˈpän-​d(ə-​)riŋ How to pronounce pondering (audio) \

Definition of ponder

transitive verb

1 : to weigh in the mind : appraise pondered their chances of success
2 : to think about : reflect on pondered the events of the day

intransitive verb

: to think or consider especially quietly, soberly, and deeply

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Other Words from ponder

ponderer \ ˈpän-​dər-​ər How to pronounce ponderer (audio) \ noun

Choose the Right Synonym for ponder

ponder, meditate, muse, ruminate mean to consider or examine attentively or deliberately. ponder implies a careful weighing of a problem or, often, prolonged inconclusive thinking about a matter. pondered the course of action meditate implies a definite focusing of one's thoughts on something so as to understand it deeply. meditated on the meaning of life muse suggests a more or less focused daydreaming as in remembrance. mused upon childhood joys ruminate implies going over the same matter in one's thoughts again and again but suggests little of either purposive thinking or rapt absorption. ruminated on past disappointments

Examples of ponder in a Sentence

He pondered the question before he answered. The team pondered their chances of success. We pondered whether we could afford the trip.
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Recent Examples on the Web

Other states like Colorado are pondering similar schemes,... The Editorial Board, WSJ, "Importing Bad Ideas on Drug Prices," 15 Apr. 2019 Yes, the NHL Seattle group has pondered hiring a GM this summer rather than next year. Geoff Baker, The Seattle Times, "When will Seattle’s NHL franchise hire a general manager? The answer may lie in Edmonton.," 10 Apr. 2019 Springer, a research professor emeritus with UAF's Institute of Marine Science, has pondered the impacts of pink salmon for quite a while. Ned Rozell, Anchorage Daily News, "Pink salmon — too much of a good thing?," 15 June 2018 In other traffic news, in a recent column, a reader pondered whether cyclists in bike lanes are bound by regulations that apply to cars on one-way San Francisco streets. Leah Garchik, San Francisco Chronicle, "Ben Fong-Torres writing ‘Summer of Love’ musical," 7 June 2018 Russian President Vladimir Putin has asked Austria’s chancellor to organize a meeting with U.S. President Donald Trump in Vienna this summer and the White House is pondering the offer, a senior European official said. Peter Nicholas, WSJ, "Vladimir Putin Asks Austrian Leader to Set Up Summit With Donald Trump," 7 June 2018 Owner Jerry Jones said Witten is pondering retirement this weekend. Brian Gosset, star-telegram, "SMU wide receiver Trey Quinn is Mr. Irrelevant as final pick of NFL Draft | Fort Worth Star-Telegram," 28 Apr. 2018 With former Brazilian President Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva behind bars, the people of Latin America's largest nation are pondering how October's presidential election will be affected by the jailing of the poll front-runner. Peter Prengaman, Fox News, "Brazil debates da Silva jailing impact on presidential race," 26 Apr. 2018 But the Internet has been pondering the future of the new royal since last year when Meghan Markle and Prince Harry got engaged. Kate Storey, Town & Country, "Could Meghan Markle and Prince Harry's Child Be a US President and In Line For the Throne?," 15 Oct. 2018

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

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

History and Etymology for ponder

Middle English, from Middle French ponderer, from Latin ponderare to weigh, ponder, from ponder-, pondus weight — more at pendant

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Statistics for ponder

Last Updated

23 May 2019

Look-up Popularity

Time Traveler for ponder

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

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More Definitions for ponder

ponder

verb

English Language Learners Definition of ponder

: to think about or consider (something) carefully

ponder

verb
pon·​der | \ ˈpän-dər How to pronounce ponder (audio) \
pondered; pondering

Kids Definition of ponder

: to think over carefully Stacey pondered the suggestion for a long moment …— Mildred D. Taylor, Roll of Thunder

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More from Merriam-Webster on ponder

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with ponder

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for ponder

Spanish Central: Translation of ponder

Nglish: Translation of ponder for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of ponder for Arabic Speakers

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