[adjective dih-lib-er-it; verb dih-lib-uh-reyt]


carefully weighed or considered; studied; intentional: a deliberate lie.
characterized by deliberation or cautious consideration; careful or slow in deciding: Moving away from the city and all its advantages required a deliberate decision.
leisurely and steady in movement or action; slow and even; unhurried: moving with a deliberate step.

verb (used with object), de·lib·er·at·ed, de·lib·er·at·ing.

to weigh in the mind; consider: to deliberate a question.

verb (used without object), de·lib·er·at·ed, de·lib·er·at·ing.

to think carefully or attentively; reflect: She deliberated for a long time before giving her decision.
to consult or confer formally: The jury deliberated for three hours.

Origin of deliberate

1350–1400; Middle English < Latin dēlīberātus (past participle of dēlīberāre to consider), equivalent to dē- de- + līber(āre) to balance, weigh (derivative of lībra balance, scales) + -ātus -ate1
Related formsde·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbde·lib·er·ate·ness, nounde·lib·er·a·tor, nounnon·de·lib·er·ate, adjectivenon·de·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbnon·de·lib·er·ate·ness, nouno·ver·de·lib·er·ate, verb, o·ver·de·lib·er·at·ed, o·ver·de·lib·er·at·ing.o·ver·de·lib·er·ate, adjectiveo·ver·de·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbo·ver·de·lib·er·ate·ness, nounpre·de·lib·er·ate, verb (used with object), pre·de·lib·er·at·ed, pre·de·lib·er·at·ing.pre·de·lib·er·ate, adjectivepre·de·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbqua·si-de·lib·er·ate, adjectivequa·si-de·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbre·de·lib·er·ate, verb, re·de·lib·er·at·ed, re·de·lib·er·at·ing.un·de·lib·er·ate, adjectiveun·de·lib·er·ate·ly, adverbun·de·lib·er·ate·ness, nounun·de·lib·er·at·ing, adjectiveun·de·lib·er·at·ing·ly, adverbwell-de·lib·er·at·ed, adjective

Synonyms for deliberate

Synonym study

1. Deliberate, intentional, premeditated, voluntary refer to something not happening by chance. Deliberate is applied to what is done not hastily but with full realization of what one is doing: a deliberate attempt to evade justice. Intentional is applied to what is definitely intended or done on purpose: an intentional omission. Premeditated is applied to what has been planned in advance: a premeditated crime. Voluntary is applied to what is done by a definite exercise of the will and not because of outward pressures: a voluntary enlistment. 3. See slow.

Antonyms for deliberate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for deliberating

Contemporary Examples of deliberating

Historical Examples of deliberating

  • I am very well,' replied Mr Merdle, after deliberating about it. '

    Little Dorrit

    Charles Dickens

  • Mr. Galloway walked to the outer door, deliberating what his course should be.

    The Channings

    Mrs. Henry Wood

  • Is this a slight matter about which you and Lysimachus are deliberating?



  • Do you mean to say you had been deliberating with yourself whether you would die?

    Lord Jim

    Joseph Conrad

  • "I guess not," Rankin replied slowly, as if deliberating the question.

    Peak and Prairie

    Anna Fuller

British Dictionary definitions for deliberating


adjective (dɪˈlɪbərɪt)

carefully thought out in advance; planned; studied; intentionala deliberate insult
careful or unhurried in speech or actiona deliberate pace

verb (dɪˈlɪbəˌreɪt)

to consider (something) deeply; ponder; think over
Derived Formsdeliberately, adverbdeliberateness, noundeliberator, noun

Word Origin for deliberate

C15: from Latin dēlīberāre to consider well, from lībrāre to weigh, from lībra scales
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

Word Origin and History for deliberating



early 15c., "done with careful consideration," from Latin deliberatus "resolved upon, determined," past participle of deliberare (see deliberation). Meaning "slow, consciously unhurried" is attested by 1590s. Related: Deliberately.



1540s, from Latin deliberatus, past participle of deliberare (see deliberation). Related: Deliberated; deliberating.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper