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verb (used without object), pre·pon·der·at·ed, pre·pon·der·at·ing.
  1. to exceed something else in weight; be the heavier.
  2. to incline downward or descend, as one scale or end of a balance, because of greater weight; be weighed down.
  3. to be superior in power, force, influence, number, amount, etc.; predominate: Evidence for the accused preponderated at the trial.
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Origin of preponderate

1615–25; < Latin praeponderātus, past participle of praeponderāre to outweigh. See pre-, ponder, -ate1
Related formspre·pon·der·a·tion, nounun·pre·pon·der·at·ed, adjectiveun·pre·pon·der·at·ing, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018

Related Words


Examples from the Web for preponderate

Historical Examples

  • Overbold, audacious; overhang, impend; overweigh, preponderate.

    An Outline of English Speech-craft

    William Barnes

  • So greatly does the influence of the Will preponderate that of the Intelligence.

    The Basis of Morality

    Arthur Schopenhauer

  • He is only doubtful as to the extent to which the one doctrine may preponderate over the other.


    Robert Gordon Latham

  • And even if his money be yet to seek, still more shall it preponderate.


    R. D. Blackmore

  • The Jews preponderate everywhere, apparently poor and depressed.

    Cities of the Dawn

    J. Ewing Ritchie

British Dictionary definitions for preponderate


verb (intr)
  1. (often foll by over) to be more powerful, important, numerous, etc (than)
  2. to be of greater weight than something else
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Derived Formspreponderately, adverbpreponderating, adjectivepreponderation, noun

Word Origin

C17: from Late Latin praeponderāre to be of greater weight, from pondus weight
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 preponderate


1610s, "to weigh more than," from Latin praeponderatus, past participle of praeponderare "outweigh, make heavier," from prae "before" (see pre-) + ponderare "to weigh" (see pound (n.1)). Meaning "to exceed in force or power" is from 1799. Related: Preponderation.

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Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper