from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Disposed to or characterized by contemplation. See Synonyms at pensive.
  • n. A person given to contemplation.
  • n. A member of a religious order that emphasizes meditation.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Pertaining to one who contemplates or is introspective and thoughtful.
  • adj. Pertaining especially to a contemplative Roman Catholic religious or one of the contemplative Roman Catholic religious orders.
  • n. Someone who has dedicated themselves to religious contemplation.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Pertaining to contemplation; addicted to, or employed in, contemplation; meditative.
  • adj. Having the power of contemplation.
  • n. A religious or either sex devoted to prayer and meditation, rather than to active works of charity.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Given to or characterized by contemplation or continued and absorbed reflection; employed in reflection or study; reflective; meditative; thoughtful: as, a contemplative mind.
  • Marked by contemplation; manifesting reflection or a studious habit.
  • Relating or pertaining to contemplation or thought, as distinguished from action: as, contemplative philosophy; the contemplative faculty (that is, the faculty of cognition).
  • n. One given to contemplation or deep thought, especially on religious subjects; a recluse; a hermit.
  • n. Eccles., a friar of the order of Mary Magdalene.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. deeply or seriously thoughtful
  • n. a person devoted to the contemplative life


from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

From Old French contemplatif, from the participle stem of Latin contempl─üre.



Log in or sign up to get involved in the conversation. It's quick and easy.

  • Principles to Remember


    * First, do the contemplative work to develop a personal answer to the question

    * Understand what the interviewer is trying to gather from your response

    * Shorten the timeframe of the question so you can give a more specific and reasonable reply


    March 22, 2011