cor·​do·​van | \ ˈkȯr-də-vən How to pronounce cordovan (audio) \

Definition of cordovan

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1 capitalized : of or relating to Córdoba and especially Córdoba, Spain
2 : made of cordovan leather



Definition of cordovan (Entry 2 of 2)

1 : a soft fine-grained colored leather
2 : dense nonporous leather tanned from the inner layer of horsehide

Examples of cordovan in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web: Adjective Thursday Boots just released a limited shell cordovan version of its signature Vanguard boot in two colors, whiskey and burgundy. Ben Boskovich, Esquire, 20 Jan. 2017 Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Kellyanne Conway went sailing off into a truthless land into which not even Richard Nixon ever set down his polished cordovans. Charles P. Pierce, Esquire, 23 Jan. 2017 But beyond that, shell cordovan is a near-perfect combination of beauty and brawn. Ben Boskovich, Esquire, 20 Jan. 2017 His primary focus is on traditional men’s shoes like moccasin loafers, derby boots, and German goisers utilizing exotic leathers like polished stingray, alligator, cordovan, military-grade textiles, and heavy canvases for his popular sneakers. Katie Kiefner, Vogue, 31 July 2017 The Ressence Type 1H also comes with three different strap options: gray calfskin, natural shell cordovan, and black woven nylon with a velcro closure. Stephen Watson, Esquire, 6 Apr. 2017

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

First Known Use of cordovan


1591, in the meaning defined at sense 1


circa 1625, in the meaning defined at sense 1

History and Etymology for cordovan


in sense 1 from Córdova, Córdoba + -an entry 2; in sense 2 attributive use of cordovan entry 2


borrowed from 16th-century Spanish cordován (now usually cordobán), from Córdova, Córdoba córdoba, city in Spain where such leather was produced + -án, Mozarabic variant of -ano -an entry 1

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The first known use of cordovan was in 1591

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Dictionary Entries Near cordovan

Cordova Island


cord switch

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Cite this Entry

“Cordovan.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Jul. 2022.

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