Definition of ponder in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈpɒndə/


[with object]
Think about (something) carefully, especially before making a decision or reaching a conclusion: I pondered the question of what clothes to wear for the occasion [no object]: she sat pondering over her problem
More example sentences
  • There is a subtle message to the reader who sits pondering the meaning of the titles.
  • Believe it or not they don't just sit indoors, pondering life and pausing occasionally to smell a rose.
  • The merest of pauses follow as he ponders his quick-fire response.
think about, give thought to, consider, review, reflect on, mull over, contemplate, study, meditate on, muse on, deliberate about, cogitate on, dwell on, brood on/over, ruminate about/on, chew over, puzzle over, speculate about, weigh up, turn over in one's mind;
be in a brown study
informal put on one's thinking cap about
archaic pore on
rare cerebrate



Pronunciation: /ˌpɒndəˈreɪʃ(ə)n/
noun ( rare)
Example sentences
  • And the worst part is that, where I usually question my friends when things go bad & wonder whether they're worth it & other uberdramatic ponderations, at the moment I seem to be questioning my devotion to them.
  • So it was only after ten minutes of steamy ponderation that I finally clucked my tongue for the last time and turned on BBEdit's ‘Show Line Numbers’ feature to get my score.
  • There is so much out there to think about, to enrich ourselves with and to use our cerebral matter in ponderation that it seemed to me to be almost a crime for these people not to use their grey matter to its full potential!


Middle English (in the sense 'appraise, judge the worth of'): from Old French ponderer 'consider', from Latin ponderare 'weigh, reflect on', from pondus, ponder- 'weight'.

  • pensive from Late Middle English:

    Pensive is from Old French pensif from penser ‘to think’: this is via Latin pensare ‘to ponder’ from pendere ‘to weigh’. The notion is of ‘weighing up’ the merits of various options. Ponder (Middle English) ‘to consider, weigh things up’ and ponderous (Late Middle English) ‘weighty’ come from the same root. The flower name pansy also comes from the same source, being the English spelling of the French pensée ‘thought’. This is because of the face-like markings on the flowers, which in old varieties looked as if they were hanging down pensively. See penthouse

Words that rhyme with ponder

absconder, anaconda, Fonda, Golconda, Honda, nonda, responder, squander, Wanda, wander, yonder

For editors and proofreaders

Line breaks: pon¦der

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