Definition of contemplation in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˌkän(t)əmˈplāSH(ə)n/


1The action of looking thoughtfully at something for a long time: the road is too busy for leisurely contemplation of the scenery
More example sentences
  • He most assuredly took on the look of deep and pensive thought, but to this man, all considerations and contemplations had been properly examined.
  • With those words, Juset left the room, softly shutting the door behind her, leaving Tarach to his own thoughts and contemplations once again.
  • He replied and returned to his contemplations, though slightly less concerned.
viewing, examination, inspection, observation, survey, study, scrutiny
1.1Deep reflective thought: he would retire to his room for study or contemplation
More example sentences
  • To understand strategy requires deep contemplation and endless study.
  • Arthur does not slip easily into introspection, he is too sprightly a personality for deep contemplation.
  • Airen had been lost in deep concentration and contemplation when she felt something nudge her shoulder.
thought, reflection, meditation, consideration, rumination, deliberation, reverie, introspection, brown study
formal cogitation, cerebration
1.2The state of being thought about or planned.
Example sentences
  • Should routine laboratory reports made in contemplation of prosecution be inadmissible if the technician does not testify?
  • The case was adjourned in contemplation of dismissal, meaning if he stayed out of trouble for six months, the charges would disappear and the file be sealed.
  • An oblong of pebbles and short posts anchored by a gnarled, leafless tree creates the isolated beach where Braidie retreats in contemplation.
1.3Religious meditation.
Example sentences
  • After hearing the dharma and becoming familiar with it through contemplation and meditation, we are able to take compassion as the basis of our daily activity.
  • It was not for the few who, because of their personal aptitude, should feel drawn to a life of a so-called spiritual meditation and contemplation.
  • It takes on an ambience of solemnity, filled with memory, contemplation, and meditation.
1.4(In Christian spirituality) a form of prayer or meditation in which a person seeks to pass beyond mental images and concepts to a direct experience of the divine.
Example sentences
  • The rosary is one of the traditional paths of Christian prayer directed to the contemplation of Christ's face.
  • He and the Church are entering a period of reflection, contemplation, and prayer.
  • This leads us into mysticism as the spiritual quality of staying in pure contemplation in the divine presence.


Middle English: from Old French, from Latin contemplatio(n-), from the verb contemplari (see contemplate).

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: con·tem·pla·tion

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