co·​gno·​scen·​te | \ ˌkän-yə-ˈshen-tē How to pronounce cognoscente (audio) , ˌkäg-nə-, -ˈsen- How to pronounce cognoscente (audio) \
plural cognoscenti\ ˌkän-​yə-​ˈshen-​tē How to pronounce cognoscente (audio) , ˌkäg-​nə-​ , -​ˈsen-​ \

Definition of cognoscente

: a person who has expert knowledge in a subject : connoisseur a computer cognoscente a cognoscente of the art world

Synonyms for cognoscente


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Cognoscente and connoisseur are more than synonyms; they're also linguistic cousins. Both terms descend from the Latin verb cognōscere, meaning "to know," and they're not alone. You might guess that cognizance and cognition are members of the cognōscere clan. Do you also recognize a family resemblance in recognize? Can you see through the disguise of incognito? Did you have a premonition that we would mention precognition? Cognoscente itself came to English by way of Italian and has been a part of the language since the late 1700s.

Examples of cognoscente in a Sentence

a cognoscente of medieval painting cognoscenti in the art world knew that most of the works being auctioned off were second-rate stuff
Recent Examples on the Web Covington's cognoscente, epicures, glitterati, and connoisseurs all met at Grand Tasting 2018, part of the week-long celebration A Taste of Covington sponsored by the Covington Business Association. Ann Benoit,, 6 May 2018

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

First Known Use of cognoscente

1776, in the meaning defined above

History and Etymology for cognoscente

borrowed from Italian (now spelled conoscente), from cognoscente, conoscente adjective, "knowing," from present participle of cognoscere, conoscere "to know, have knowledge of," going back to Latin cognōscere "to get to know, acquire knowledge of" — more at cognition

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The first known use of cognoscente was in 1776

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Cite this Entry

“Cognoscente.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 19 May. 2022.

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