1

cognate

adjective cog·nate \ ˈkäg-ˌnāt \
Updated on: 20 Mar 2018

Definition of cognate

1 : of the same or similar nature : generically alike
  • the cognate fields of film and theater
2 : related by blood
  • a family cognate with another
; also : related on the mother's side
3 a : related by descent from the same ancestral language
  • Spanish and French are cognate languages.
b of a word or morpheme : related by derivation, borrowing, or descent
  • English "eat" and German "essen" are cognate.
c of a substantive : related to a verb usually by derivation and serving as its object to reinforce the meaning (such as song in "she sang a song")

cognately

adverb

cognate was our Word of the Day on 02/04/2009. Hear the podcast!

Examples of cognate in a Sentence

  1. English “eat” and German “essen” are cognate.

  2. Spanish and French are cognate languages.

Origin and Etymology of cognate

Latin cognatus, from co- + gnatus, natus, past participle of nasci to be born; akin to Latin gignere to beget — more at kin

Other Language Terms


2

cognate

noun

Definition of cognate

: one that is cognate with another
  • "Eat" and "essen" are cognates.

Recent Examples of cognate from the Web

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'cognate.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

First Known Use of cognate

1754

Other Language Terms


COGNATE Defined for English Language Learners

cognate

Definition of cognate for English Language Learners

  • linguistics : having the same origin



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