pre·​med·​i·​tate (ˌ)prē-ˈme-də-ˌtāt How to pronounce premeditate (audio)
premeditated; premeditating; premeditates

transitive verb

: to think about and revolve in the mind beforehand

intransitive verb

: to think, consider, or deliberate beforehand
premeditator noun

Examples of premeditate in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web Prosecutors allege Garcia’s actions were deliberate and premeditated. Lyndsay Winkley, San Diego Union-Tribune, 13 June 2023 Defense attorneys have argued that the killings were not premeditated. CBS News, 6 June 2023 This was premeditated, it was planned, someone meant to kill Carlos' father. Patrick Gomez,, 17 May 2023 Prosecutors have portrayed Lee’s killing as premeditated, relying on security camera footage, text messages and the nature of the weapon used to make their case against Momeni. Kim Bellware, Washington Post, 15 Apr. 2023 Raynella Leath is guilty of the first-degree premeditated homicide of David Leath. Erin Moriarty, CBS News, 14 July 2018 Prosecutors said the deadly attack may also have been premeditated. Tristan Balagtas, Peoplemag, 5 May 2023 Avila’s lawyer argued her actions were not premeditated and that her undiagnosed mental health disorder played a role. Francisco Guzman, USA TODAY, 2 May 2023 Jurors convicted Alexis Avila, 19, of child abuse involving great bodily harm following a days-long trial last month in which her public defender argued her actions were not premeditated and that a previously undiagnosed mental health disorder played a role. CBS News, 2 May 2023

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'premeditate.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History


Latin praemeditatus, past participle of praemeditari, from prae- + meditari to meditate

First Known Use

circa 1526, in the meaning defined at transitive sense

Time Traveler
The first known use of premeditate was circa 1526

Dictionary Entries Near premeditate

Cite this Entry

“Premeditate.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 18 Jun. 2024.

Kids Definition


pre·​med·​i·​tate pri-ˈmed-ə-ˌtāt How to pronounce premeditate (audio)
: to think about and plan beforehand
premeditated murder

Legal Definition


pre·​med·​i·​tate pri-ˈme-də-ˌtāt How to pronounce premeditate (audio)
premeditated; premeditating

transitive verb

: to think about or consider beforehand
must premeditate the killing and deliberate about itW. R. LaFave and A. W. Scott, Jr.

intransitive verb

: to think or consider beforehand

More from Merriam-Webster on premeditate

Love words? Need even more definitions?

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