1

incognito

play
adverb or adjective in·cog·ni·to \ ˌin-ˌkäg-ˈnē-(ˌ)tō also in-ˈkäg-nə-ˌtō \

Definition of incognito

:with one's identity concealed

incognito was our Word of the Day on 10/28/2010. Hear the podcast!

Did You Know?

The ancient Greeks and Romans knew that there were times when you didn't want to be recognized. For example, a myth tells how Zeus and Hermes visited a village incognito and asked for lodging. The apparently penniless travelers were turned away from every household except that of a poor elderly couple named Baucis and Philemon, who provided a room and a feast despite their own poverty. The Romans had a word that described someone or something unknown (like the gods in the tale): incognitus, a term that is the ancestor of our modern incognito.

Origin and Etymology of incognito

Italian, from Latin incognitus unknown, from in- + cognitus, past participle of cognoscere to know — more at cognition


2

incognito

noun

Definition of incognito

plural incognitos
1 :one appearing or living incognito
2 :the state or assumed identity of one living or traveling incognito or incognita

Recent Examples of incognito from the Web

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

First Known Use of incognito

1638


INCOGNITO Defined for English Language Learners

incognito

play
adverb

Definition of incognito for English Language Learners

  • : with your true identity kept secret (as by using a different name or a disguise)


INCOGNITO Defined for Kids

incognito

play
adverb or adjective in·cog·ni·to \ ˌin-ˌkäg-ˈnē-tō , in-ˈkäg-nə-ˌtō \

Definition of incognito for Students

:with someone's identity kept secret
  • He's traveling incognito.


Seen and Heard

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