Definition of knowledge
1 obsolete : cognizance
2 a (1) : the fact or condition of knowing something with familiarity gained through experience or association (2) : acquaintance with or understanding of a science, art, or technique b (1) : the fact or condition of being aware of something (2) : the range of one's information or understanding <answered to the best of my knowledge> c : the circumstance or condition of apprehending truth or fact through reasoning : cognition d : the fact or condition of having information or of being learned <a person of unusual knowledge>
3 archaic : sexual intercourse
4 a : the sum of what is known : the body of truth, information, and principles acquired by humankind b archaic : a branch of learning
Examples of knowledge in a sentence
At that time the word science had not been narrowed down to one kind of knowledge; it meant whatever was known, and men of learning were still able to possess most of it. —Jacques Barzun, From Dawn to Decadence, 2000
With their aid, he should be able to adapt himself selectively to his culture, rejecting its evils, stupidities and irrelevances, gratefully accepting all its treasures of accumulated knowledge … and practical wisdom. —Aldous Huxley, “Culture and the … ,” in Artificial Paradises,Mike Jay editor, 1999
The knowledge of the godawful way people act (their greed, their vicarious or direct violence), and of the youth and helplessness of those who died, leads to shame … —Harold Brodkey, New Yorker, 30 Jan. 1995
She has little knowledge of fashion.
He has devoted himself to the pursuit of knowledge.
She gained a thorough knowledge of local customs.
Did you have any knowledge of her intentions?
Origin and Etymology of knowledge
Middle English knowlege, from knowlechen to acknowledge, irregular from knowen
First Known Use: 14th century
Synonym Discussion of knowledge
KNOWLEDGE Defined for English Language Learners
Definition of knowledge for English Language Learners
: information, understanding, or skill that you get from experience or education
: awareness of something : the state of being aware of something
KNOWLEDGE Defined for Kids
Definition of knowledge for Students
1 : understanding and skill gained by experience <He has a knowledge of carpentry.>
2 : the state of being aware of something or of having information <He borrowed my camera without my knowledge.>
3 : range of information or awareness <To my knowledge our school has never won the championship.>
4 : something learned and kept in the mind : learning
Legal Definition of knowledge
1a : awareness or understanding especially of an act, a fact, or the truth : actual knowledge 1 in this entry b : awareness that a fact or circumstance probably exists; broadly : constructive knowledge in this entry — see also scienter, willful blindness Editor's note: Knowledge fundamentally differs from intent in being grounded in awareness rather than purpose. actual knowledge 1 : direct and clear awareness (as of a fact or condition) <the bank had actual knowledge that the name and account number referred to different persons> 2 : awareness of such information as would cause a reasonable person to inquire further; specifically : such awareness considered as a timely and sufficient substitute for actual notice (as of a work-related injury or of a bankruptcy proceeding) <ruled that the employer did not have actual notice or actual knowledge within 90 days> constructive knowledge : knowledge (as of a condition or fact) that one using ordinary care or diligence would possess <had constructive knowledge of the presence of narcotics on his property> personal knowledge : direct knowledge of a matter or of the truth or falsity of an allegation <a witness may not testify to a matter unless evidence is introduced sufficient to support a finding that the witness has personal knowledge of the matter — Federal Rules of Evidence Rule 602> superior knowledge : knowledge greater than that possessed by another; especially : awareness of a condition or fact that affects another who was not aware of it <denied having had superior knowledge of the hazard> <superior knowledge of a factor in the performance of a contract>
2 : the range of one's information, understanding, or expertise <answered to the best of his knowledge>
Seen and Heard
What made you want to look up knowledge? Please tell us where you read or heard it (including the quote, if possible).