Definition of contemplate in English:

contemplate

Syllabification: con·tem·plate
Pronunciation: /ˈkän(t)əmˌplāt
 
/

verb

[with object]
1Look thoughtfully for a long time at: he sat on the carpet contemplating his image in the mirrors
More example sentences
  • Evan let his left hand slide away from the computer terminal as he spoke, thoughtfully contemplating the carpeted floor for a moment.
  • Nancy replied, sitting on a chair opposite me and pulling her knees up to her chest, resting her chin on her knees as she contemplated me thoughtfully.
  • Sitting on her bed she contemplated the phone thoughtfully - well if Nathan wasn't around he couldn't stop her from making a quick phone call.
Synonyms
1.1Think about: the results of a trade war are too horrifying to contemplate
More example sentences
  • I boarded a plane for 20 hours of flying - lots of time to reflect on the past and contemplate the future.
  • It can feel like an overwhelming position but one that you are considering if you have begun to contemplate your readiness.
  • He began contemplating a political race before his 16-year-old son died in a 1996 car crash.
Synonyms
think about, ponder, reflect on, consider, mull over, muse on, dwell on, deliberate over, meditate on, ruminate on, chew over, brood on/about, turn over in one's mind
formal cogitate
consider, think about, have in mind, intend, propose; envisage, foresee
1.2 [no object] Think profoundly and at length; meditate: he sat morosely contemplating
More example sentences
  • As Boone sits on the beach contemplating what could have been, he turns to look at Jack with a resentment that goes unnoticed.
  • Seats carved with verses - many referring to Lady Mary and her empathy with the scenery - have been placed at strategic intervals along the route, to sit and contemplate.
  • It's at times like these when I sit and contemplate and plot.
1.3Have in mind as a probable though not certain intention: she was contemplating a gold mining venture
More example sentences
  • But when we actually contemplated some evil intention directed towards us, it seemed a little chillier.
  • The book forced me to contemplate my own intentions in participating in a graduate education program that has a partnership with a predominantly Black school.
  • Alexander stood at the edge of the balcony for a moment, contemplating the quandary, intently observed by Constantine.

Origin

late 16th century: from Latin contemplat- 'surveyed, observed, contemplated', from the verb contemplari, based on templum 'place for observation'.

Derivatives

contemplator

Pronunciation: /-ˌplātər/
noun
More example sentences
  • We remain passive spectators, rational contemplators, reflecting on our experience.
  • As expected, many participants were in the preparation stage of change; a quarter were precontemplators, and a fifth contemplators.
  • For example, while contemplators need to be shown ways to move themselves to action, precontemplators need to be made aware that health risks are associated with their current behaviour.

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