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Part or all of this entry has been imported from the 1913 edition of Webster’s Dictionary, which is now free of copyright and hence in the public domain. The imported definitions may be significantly out of date, and any more recent senses may be completely missing.
(See the entry for preponderate in
Webster’s Revised Unabridged Dictionary, G. & C. Merriam, 1913.)


From Latin praeponderatus, past participle of praeponderāre (to outweigh)


preponderate (third-person singular simple present preponderates, present participle preponderating, simple past and past participle preponderated)

  1. (transitive) To outweigh; to be heavier than; to exceed in weight
    Synonym: overbalance
    • 1665, Joseph Glanvill, Scepsis Scientifica
      an inconsiderable weight by virtue of its distance from the Centre of the Ballance, will preponderate much greater magnitudes
  2. (transitive) To overpower by stronger or moral power.
  3. (transitive, obsolete) To cause to prefer; to incline; to decide.
    • 1642, Thomas Fuller, The Holy State, and the Profane State:
      The desire to spare Christian blood preponderates him for peace.
  4. (intransitive) To exceed in weight; hence, to predominate
    • 1861, John Stuart Mill, Utilitarianism[1]:
      [] if the principle of utility is good for anything, it must be good for weighing these conflicting utilities against one another, and marking out the region within which one or the other preponderates.

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