Cos·​sack | \ ˈkä-ˌsak How to pronounce Cossack (audio) , -sək \

Definition of Cossack

1 : a member of any of a number of autonomous communities drawn from various ethnic and linguistic groups (such as Slavs, Tatars, and Circassians) that formed in Ukraine, southern Russia, the Caucasus Mountains, and Siberia after about 1400 and that were completely incorporated into czarist Russia during the 18th and 19th centuries
2 : a mounted soldier serving in a unit drafted from Cossack communities

First Known Use of Cossack

1589, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for Cossack

Polish & Ukrainian kozak, of Turkic origin; akin to Volga Tatar kazak free person

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The first known use of Cossack was in 1589

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Cite this Entry

“Cossack.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Apr. 2020.

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