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[pon-der] /ˈpɒn dər/
verb (used without object)
to consider something deeply and thoroughly; meditate (often followed by over or upon).
verb (used with object)
to weigh carefully in the mind; consider thoughtfully:
He pondered his next words thoroughly.
Origin of ponder
1300-50; Middle English pondren < Middle French ponderer < Latin ponderāre to ponder, weigh; akin to pendēre to be suspended, hang (see pend)
Related forms
ponderer, noun
reponder, verb (used without object)
unpondered, adjective
well-pondered, adjective
1. reflect, cogitate, deliberate, ruminate. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for ponder upon
Historical Examples
  • Lady Elizabeth for some time made no reply, but seemed to ponder upon this statement very earnestly.

    The Widow Barnaby Frances Trollope
  • But the Cordovese do not appear to ponder upon times changes.

    Old Continental Towns Walter M. Gallichan
  • Then, as was quite natural, her thoughts wandered to Mollie, and she began to ponder upon what Aime had told her.

    Vagabondia Frances Hodgson Burnett
  • One may ponder upon what Anatole France once said about this justice.

    The Happy Golfer Henry Leach
  • It was too thrilling to remain a secret with no one but herself to ponder upon it.

  • As I was saying, I love to ponder upon causes and compare effects.

  • Thyrsis went away from this interview with some new problems to ponder upon.

    Love's Pilgrimage Upton Sinclair
  • And from this recollection I passed on to ponder upon the melancholy truth that originality will ever be an unpopular quality.

    A Boswell of Baghdad E. V. Lucas
  • She felt that she should not sleep, even were she to seek her pillow: for she had muchvery much to ponder upon!

    Wagner, the Wehr-Wolf George W. M. Reynolds
  • Let those persons who cannot get over George the Third and the Alabama ponder upon this for a minute or two.

    A Straight Deal Owen Wister
British Dictionary definitions for ponder upon


when intr, sometimes foll by on or over. to give thorough or deep consideration (to); meditate (upon)
Word Origin
C14: from Old French ponderer, from Latin ponderāre to weigh, consider, from pondus weight; related to pendere to weigh
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for ponder upon



early 14c., "to estimate the worth of, to appraise," from Old French ponderer "to weigh, poise" (14c., Modern French pondérer) and directly from Latin ponderare "ponder, consider, reflect," literally "to weigh," from pondus (genitive ponderis) "weigh" (see pound (n.1)). Meaning "to weigh a matter mentally" is attested from late 14c. Related: Pondered; pondering; ponderation.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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