The Meaning of Pandering: What It Is and How To Use It

Have you ever wondered about the definition of pandering? This article will provide you with all of the info you need on the word pandering, including its definition, etymology, usage, example sentences, and more!

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What does the word pandering mean?

According to Collins English Dictionary, the word pandering is the present participle form of the verb pander. The verb pander – along with its variants panders and pandered formed by the suffixes s and ed – means to satisfy the needs of others for personal gain, or who exploits the weaknesses of others. This is also a noun used to refer to the person who does this. Initially, the word pander referred to a pimp, or other sort of go-between for sexual intrigue. This person appeals to the desires of others, particularly the vile taste of vulgar persons to procure the earnings of a prostitute for personal gain. Pandering is three syllables – pan-der-ing, and the pronunciation of pandering is ˈpændə-ring. This illegal offer of illicit sex and illicit sexual intercourse or gratification can come with penalties depending on the statutes or states laws. These offenses range from misdemeanors to felonies, and the defendant may be liable for jail time.

Many different languages aso contain words that mean pandering. All of these words also describe an intense enthusiasm or revolutionary ardor for something. You may notice that some of these words look and sound similar to the word pandering. These are called cognates. A cognate, which is a word that looks and sounds similar while retaining the same meaning across languages, are often formed when two words have the same root or language of origin such as Latin or Greek. This list of translations of pandering is provided by Word Sense.

  •  Volapük: (♂♀) lupärodan‎, (♂) hilupärodan‎, (♀) jilupärodan‎
  •  Czech: kuplíř‎ (masc.)
  •  Russian: сутенёр‎ (masc.), сво́дник‎ (masc.)
  •  Dutch: pooier‎ (masc.)
  •  Finnish: parittaja‎
  •  Norwegian: hallik‎ (masc.)
  •  German: Kuppler‎ (masc.), Kupplerin‎ (fem.), Zuhälter‎ (masc.), Zuhälterin‎ (fem.)

How can the word pandering be used in a sentence?

The word pandering can be used in many different sentences in the English language. Using words in a sentence is a great way to memorize their definitions and start to incorporate them into your vocabulary. You can also try making flashcards and quizzes to test your own knowledge. Try using this word of the day in a sentence today! Below are a few different examples of the word pandering to help get you started.

It was embarrassing to watch our coworker who had just started be so pandering to the boss. At the holiday party he refilled his drink twenty times and kept asking him if he needed anything. He came off like such a brown-noser. I don’t want to judge too harshly but it was so obvious. 

The politician, rather than being honest with the public, decided to pander to their every whim. The people could see right through his transparent facade. They did not want a candidate who was all talk, they wanted someone who was honest about what was achievable. 

What is the origin of the word pandering?

According to Etymonline, the word paner has been used to mean an arranger of sexual liaisons since the 1520s. This comes from the c14 Middle English Pandare, the name of a character in Chaucer’s Troilus and Criseyde and Shakespeare’s Troilus and Cressida. This was borrowed from Boccaccio, who used it in the Italian form Pandaro in Filostrato. These both come from the Greek prince Pandaros who procured the love of Cressida for Troilus, the lovers. Both the story and the name are medieval inventions, and while the name shows up in Greek, the story does not. It is thought that this word of passions, evil designs, and the illicit love-affairs of others has its origins in the Ancient Greek pandaros. In Homer, Pander is a participant in the Trojan War, which suggests it could not be Greek. One can add the suffixes ism, ly, age, and ing to create the related words panderism (n.), panderly (adv.), panderage (n.) and the adjective pandering.

What are synonyms and antonyms for pandering?

There are a plethora of different words that someone can use in place of the word pandering. These words which have the same definition as the word pandering are called synonyms. Synonyms are a great way to expand your vocabulary and an easy way to avoid repeating yourself in speech or written work. This list of synonyms for the word pandering is provided by Power Thesaurus.

  •  ruffian
  •  indulge
  •  procuring
  •  hustla
  •  favouritism
  •  prostitutes
  •  procurement
  •  coddling
  •  pimping
  •  featherbedding
  •  chulo
  •  brokering
  •  plying
  •  pimpin
  •  pimp
  •  mollycoddling
  •  humoring
  •  securing
  •  gratifying
  •  satisfying
  •  indulging
  •  solicitation
  •  procure
  •  procurer
  •  basely
  •  pimpy
  •  Sexual partner
  •  kowtowing
  •  providing
  •  babying
  •  prostitution
  •  cholo
  •  cosseting
  •  despicably
  •  gratify
  •  catering
  •  pampering
  •  purveying

There are also many different words that mean the opposite of the word pandering. These opposite words are called antonyms. Learning antonyms for different words is also a great way to expand your English language vocabulary. This list of antonyms for the word pandering is also provided by Power Thesaurus.  

  •  torment
  •  menace
  •  neat
  •  compel
  •  cracking
  •  harass
  •  badger
  •  ruffian
  •  smashing
  •  corking
  •  swell
  •  roughneck
  •  browbeat
  •  yobbo
  •  push
  •  oppressor
  •  nifty
  •  persecute
  •  groovy
  •  bully
  •  bang-up
  •  hound
  •  coerce
  •  tyrant
  •  thug
  •  press
  •  swagger
  •  domineer
  •  dragoon
  •  hector
  •  tyrannize
  •  terrorize
  •  pressure
  •  bullyrag
  •  threaten
  •  tough
  •  keen
  •  persecutor
  •  pressurize
  •  slap-up
  •  hooligan
  •  hoodlum
  •  force
  •  bulldoze
  •  strong-arm
  •  great
  •  railroad
  •  intimidate
  •  rowdy
  •  dandy
  •  peachy

Overall, the word pandering means one who supplies persons for vulgar desires or the vices of others, like a pimp. This word of ignoble ambitions and amorous intrigues or whims comes from the earlier pandar, and the use of Middle English name Pandare Pandarus.


  1. Pander definition and meaning | Collins English Dictionary
  2. Pandering synonyms – 37 Words and Phrases for Pandering | Power Thesaurus 
  3. pander | Origin and meaning of pander | Online Etymology Dictionary  
  4. pandering: meaning, origin, translation | Word Sense
  5.  Pandering antonyms – 1 Opposites of Pandering | Power Thesaurus