co·​hort | \ ˈkō-ˌhȯrt How to pronounce cohort (audio) \

Definition of cohort

1 : companion, colleague a few of their … cohorts decided to form a company— Burt Hochberg
2a : band, group a cohort of supporters
b : a group of individuals having a statistical factor (such as age or class membership) in common in a demographic study a cohort of premedical students the cohort of people born in the 1980s
c : one of 10 divisions of an ancient Roman legion
d : a group of warriors or soldiers

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Did You Know?

In ancient times, a cohort was a military unit, one of ten divisions in a Roman legion. The term passed into English via French in the 15th century, when it was used in translations and writings about Roman history. Once cohort became established in our language, its meaning was extended, first to refer to any body of troops, then to any group of individuals with something in common, and later to a single companion. Some usage commentators have objected to this last sense because it can be hard to tell whether the plural refers to different individuals or different groups. The companion sense is well established in standard use, however, and its meaning is clear enough in such sentences as her cohorts came along with her to the game.

Examples of cohort in a Sentence

The police arrested the gang's leader and his cohorts. Depression was a common problem for people in that age cohort.

Recent Examples on the Web

Amherst has figured out how to serve a fast-growing new cohort of renters. Shawn Tully, Fortune, "Meet the A.I. Landlord That’s Building a Single-Family-Home Empire," 21 June 2019 The largest age cohort is 27-year-olds, making up 4.8 million of the population. Bloomberg News,, "Half of America’s population is now 38-years-old or older," 21 June 2019 The younger cohort were also more likely to use documentaries to inform their world views and marshal evidence for debates about current events. Ann Hornaday, Washington Post, "At AFI Docs, audiences seem younger than ever. Is it a trend?," 20 June 2019 For example, the cohort is completely gender-balanced. Rebecca Sun, The Hollywood Reporter, "CAA Launches New Business Summit for Young Executives (Exclusive)," 14 June 2019 The transportation group is in the middle of contract negotiations now, a spokesperson said, while the second cohort is still in the testing phase. San Diego Union-Tribune, "Sleeping pods and robots in San Diego airport? Leaders ask startups for more out-of-the-box ideas," 14 June 2019 The potentially former and possibly current Kardashian-Jenner cohort is in London to celebrate the launch of her Eyelure eyelash collection, more than an ocean away from the Khloé Kardashian-Tristan Thompson love triangle. Leah Prinzivalli, Allure, "Jordyn Woods Steps Out in Head-Turning Platinum-Blonde Hair," 26 Mar. 2019 This must have been very sweet for Klopp and his cohort., "Mohamed Salah: His 6 Best Liverpool Moments Since Arriving Two Years Ago," 22 June 2019 Former peers and instructors remembered O’Sullivan as a hard worker with an infectious smile, who overcame trepidation about her abilities to become the student commander of her cohort. Alexei Koseff,, "‘She was a hero’: Sacramento cop grew up in Bay Area, achieved dream before slaying," 20 June 2019

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

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First Known Use of cohort

15th century, in the meaning defined at sense 2c

History and Etymology for cohort

Middle English, from Latin cohort-, cohors — more at court

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Statistics for cohort

Last Updated

12 Jul 2019

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Time Traveler for cohort

The first known use of cohort was in the 15th century

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English Language Learners Definition of cohort

often disapproving : a friend or companion
technical : a group of people used in a study who have something (such as age or social class) in common


co·​hort | \ ˈkō-ˌhȯ(ə)rt How to pronounce cohort (audio) \

Medical Definition of cohort

: a group of individuals having a statistical factor (as age or risk) in common the population consisted of two cohorts: 204 clearly exposed and 163 not exposed— R. R. Suskind et al

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More from Merriam-Webster on cohort

Rhyming Dictionary: Words that rhyme with cohort

Thesaurus: All synonyms and antonyms for cohort

Spanish Central: Translation of cohort

Nglish: Translation of cohort for Spanish Speakers

Britannica English: Translation of cohort for Arabic Speakers

Comments on cohort

What made you want to look up cohort? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).


appealing forcibly to the mind or reason

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