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Pander vs ponder

Pander and ponder are two words that are often confused. We will examine the difference between the definitions for pander and ponder, where these words came from and some examples of their use in sentences.

Pander means to gratify a weakness or an offensive desire, to cater to others’ vulgar appetites. In a legal sense, pander means to supply prostitutes, to pimp. Pander is an intransitive verb, which is a verb that does not take an object. Related terms are panders, pandered, pandering. The word pander is derived from the name of a character in Troilus and Criseyde, by Chaucer. Pandare procured Criseyde’s love for Troilus.

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Ponder means to think some over, carefully, to mull something over, especially when deliberating a decision or coming to a conclusion. Ponder is a transitive verb, which is a verb that takes an object. Related words are ponders, pondered, pondering. The word ponder is derived from the Old French word ponderer meaning to weigh.

Examples

If it’s 2017, and you’re the mayor of a city whose principal product is pandering to several ethnic groups, you’d better pander to the brown bigots out in the neighborhoods. (The Newton Daily News)

The analyst said this was not the first time India has used the Dalai Lama to express its displeasure to China, especially when bilateral talks fail to include their demands or to “pander to domestic anti-China issues”. (The Press Trust of India)

Ryan’s border tax on the ropes as Trump ponders overhaul plan (The Courier-Tribune)

But the museum draws all types of interested parties, and the staff is hoping to draw even more with the “Pondering Mary: Her Story Through Icons” exhibit, giving a rare look at the mother of Jesus Christ by using rare icons that first-time visitors and returning members should be interested in. (Worcester Magazine)

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