from The American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, 4th Edition

  • adj. Related by blood; having a common ancestor.
  • adj. Related in origin, as certain words in genetically related languages descended from the same ancestral root; for example, English name and Latin nōmen from Indo-European *nŏ̄-men-.
  • adj. Related or analogous in nature, character, or function.
  • n. One related by blood or origin with another, especially a person sharing an ancestor with another.
  • n. A word related to one in another language.

from Wiktionary, Creative Commons Attribution/Share-Alike License

  • adj. Either descended from the same attested source lexeme of ancestor language, or held on the grounds of the methods of historical linguistics to be regular reflexes of the unattested, reconstructed form of proto-language.
  • n. One of a number of things allied in origin or nature.
  • n. One who is related to another on the female side.
  • n. One who is related to another, both having descended from a common ancestor through legal marriages.
  • n. A word either descended from the same base word of the same ancestor language as the given word, or strongly believed to be a regular reflex of the same reconstructed root of proto-language as the given word.

from the GNU version of the Collaborative International Dictionary of English

  • adj. Allied by blood; kindred by birth; specifically (Law), related on the mother's side.
  • adj. Of the same or a similar nature; of the same family; proceeding from the same stock or root; allied; kindred.
  • n. One who is related to another on the female side.
  • n. One of a number of things allied in origin or nature.

from The Century Dictionary and Cyclopedia

  • Allied by blood; connected or related by birth; specifically, of the same parentage, near or remote, as another. See cognation, 1.
  • Related in origin; traceable to the same source; proceeding from the same stock or root; of the same family, in a general sense: as, cognate languages or dialects; words cognate in origin.
  • Allied in nature, quality, or form; having affinity of any kind: as, cognate sounds.
  • Any similar notions.
  • n. One connected with another by ties of kindred; specifically, in the plural, all those whose descent can be traced from one pair. In its technical use in Roman law it implied a lawful marriage as the source. See agnate and cognation, 1.
  • n. Anything related to another by origin or derivation, as a language or a word: as, the Latin and Greek languages are cognates.

from WordNet 3.0 Copyright 2006 by Princeton University. All rights reserved.

  • adj. having the same ancestral language
  • adj. related in nature
  • n. a word is cognate with another if both derive from the same word in an ancestral language
  • adj. related by blood
  • n. one related by blood or origin; especially on sharing an ancestor with another


Latin cognātus : co-, co- + gnātus, born, past participle of nāscī, to be born; see genə- in Indo-European roots.
(American Heritage® Dictionary of the English Language, Fourth Edition)
From Latin cognātus ("related by blood"), from nātus ("born"). (Wiktionary)



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