cog·​ni·​zant ˈkäg-nə-zənt How to pronounce cognizant (audio)
: knowledgeable of something especially through personal experience
also : mindful
cognizant of the potential dangers
Choose the Right Synonym for cognizant

aware, cognizant, conscious, sensible, alive, awake mean having knowledge of something.

aware implies vigilance in observing or alertness in drawing inferences from what one experiences.

aware of changes in climate

cognizant implies having special or certain knowledge as from firsthand sources.

not fully cognizant of the facts

conscious implies that one is focusing one's attention on something or is even preoccupied by it.

conscious that my heart was pounding

sensible implies direct or intuitive perceiving especially of intangibles or of emotional states or qualities.

sensible of a teacher's influence

alive adds to sensible the implication of acute sensitivity to something.

alive to the thrill of danger

awake implies that one has become alive to something and is on the alert.

a country always awake to the threat of invasion

Examples of cognizant in a Sentence

Not like some college kid beaming in blissful ignorance, but rather like a worldly 23-year-old, self-aware and fully cognizant of the dire straits he's entering. Jody Berger, ESPN, 14 June 1999
… the idea of a machine cognizant of that human Achilles' heel, emotion, can conjure more sinister images—like HAL, the savvy, menacing computer in "2001," whose fear that he would be unplugged led him to kill all but one of the crew members on a space mission. Daniel Goleman, New York Times, 7 Jan. 1997
… to assure you that I am neither privy to, nor cognizant of, any such clique; and that I most potently disbelieve in the existence of any such. Abraham Lincoln, letter, 13 Oct. 1849
He is cognizant of his duties as a father. not fully cognizant of the details of the trade agreement
Recent Examples on the Web While Michael Kurtz, cofounder of Record Store Day, notes that variants are often great for record stores and other retailers when the artist is actually cognizant of them, the proliferation of artists selling variants direct-to-consumers from their websites often cuts them out completely. Jem Aswad, Variety, 16 July 2024 Be careful, be cognizant of what might be around, check with the lifeguards, watch for the hazard flags. Taylor Wilson, USA TODAY, 4 July 2024 So, try to be cognizant of your own mental fortitude and work on areas that need improvement. Amy Morin, Parents, 3 July 2024 But as polls show softening Democratic support within that voter group, Trump and his allies are courting onetime Biden voters like Williams and James — cognizant that even a small shift in a state like Georgia could mean the difference between winning and losing. Maeve Reston, Washington Post, 30 June 2024 See all Example Sentences for cognizant 

These examples are programmatically compiled from various online sources to illustrate current usage of the word 'cognizant.' Any opinions expressed in the examples do not represent those of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback about these examples.

Word History

First Known Use

1820, in the meaning defined above

Time Traveler
The first known use of cognizant was in 1820

Dictionary Entries Near cognizant

Cite this Entry

“Cognizant.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 25 Jul. 2024.

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