Term originated in the UK and came to prominence in the 1960's, initially to describe a pimp. In Spanish it means "prince" and could have either been referring to the fancy, over-the-top clothing and jewelry popular with pimps, or because he was surrounded by a harem of women, involved in the underworld, but usually not the actual "king" of the area (he had to pay tribute to use the block or neighborhood).

Now it is generally used to refer to someone (usually a male) who dresses in nicer clothing and acts in a polished fashion; often interchangable with fag or pussy, but not necessarily as derogatory: a ponce is not necessarily homosexual, nor are they necessarily passive or weak, but they would tend to be thought of as metrosexual or gay in their manner of dress.

In the US it also takes a bit of a tone for a poser or wannabe, primarily in the punk, ska, or artsy scenes.
1960's BRITISH:
JACK: Oi, I need to find me a classy bird for the night.
TOM: Go talk to that ponce Tony. He got some nice girls, by the hour, they are.
JACK: Tony's a ponce, is that right? I though he just had some sort of magic with the ladies.
TOM: Fuckin' prat, you are.


NIGEL: I can't believe I got curry on me new Pradas! I just paid five hundred quid for em!
ANDY: Haha, you fuckin' ponce, that's what you get.
NIGEL: Fuck you, you fookin' chav, at least me Burberry's real.
ANDY: Right. You're still a ponce.

DAVE: Hey man, wanna come into the woods with us and blaze?
FRED: No thanks, dude. I've got a date tonight and I don't wanna get my jeans dirty or sound like a retard when I'm talking to her.
DAVE: Quit being a fucking ponce and come on, man. This shit's good.
FRED: Alright, fine.

"Tim is a ponce; he thinks that Blink 182 is punk."
by don_tardo December 27, 2006
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An individual who attempts to fake having intelligence, class, or culture.
I knew he was a bit of a ponce, but what's with the monocle?
by Melgar May 8, 2004
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Chiefly British. Someone who procures customers for whores. The English word for Pimp. Although somewhat outdated it is still used but under different meaning;
A camp person, overtly dressed, gay.
by LAG January 21, 2003
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Widely used to reffer to a poser,camp or soft looking person- the type of person who looks like they would get beaten up by a girl
"Jimmy cried during titanic-hes such a ponce"
"Pato i cant believe your wearing make up,you ponce!"
by Captaindrew March 22, 2006
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a male who on occasion participates in strange activities, such as: water skiing and trying on women's shoes. a "ponce" may often be found wearing strange or moth-eaten fur hats, similar to one that 'light speed champion' wears. in response to a cuss from a "ponce", one would most likely say "shut up, gayboy" or "take that shit off your head".
MYLES: i'm thinking i might wear that furry hat out today.
JAMES: you think that will get you bare babes, init..that's so ponce.
MYLES: shut up, gay boy.
JAMES: at least i don't try on girls' shoes.
by greyfrust August 26, 2009
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a person who hangs around other poeple scoialy and never pays his way ie gets people to buy him drinks food etc but never returns the favour.
thats the 5th pint ive bought that cunt Dave hes such a ponce.
by grumpyboy September 14, 2005
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To take something from someone with their permission.
Can I ponce a fag? (Where fag = cigarette)
by Ian Chode April 3, 2003
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