Synonym Chooser

How is the word cogent different from other adjectives like it?

Some common synonyms of cogent are convincing, sound, telling, and valid. While all these words mean "having such force as to compel serious attention and usually acceptance," cogent may stress either weight of sound argument and evidence or lucidity of presentation.

the prosecutor's cogent summation won over the jury

When can convincing be used instead of cogent?

The synonyms convincing and cogent are sometimes interchangeable, but convincing suggests a power to overcome doubt, opposition, or reluctance to accept.

a convincing argument for welfare reform

When is sound a more appropriate choice than cogent?

The meanings of sound and cogent largely overlap; however, sound implies a basis of flawless reasoning or of solid grounds.

a sound proposal for reviving the economy

When would telling be a good substitute for cogent?

While the synonyms telling and cogent are close in meaning, telling stresses an immediate and crucial effect striking at the heart of a matter.

a telling example of bureaucratic waste

In what contexts can valid take the place of cogent?

The words valid and cogent are synonyms, but do differ in nuance. Specifically, valid implies being supported by objective truth or generally accepted authority.

a valid reason for being absent
a valid marriage


Thesaurus Entries Near cogent

Cite this Entry

“Cogent.” Thesaurus, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 7 Dec. 2023.

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