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[koo-dohz, -dohs, -dos, kyoo-] /ˈku doʊz, -doʊs, -dɒs, ˈkyu-/
noun, (used with a singular verb)
honor; glory; acclaim:
He received kudos from everyone on his performance.
1825-35; irregular transliteration of Greek kŷdos
Usage note
In the 19th century, kudos1 entered English as a singular noun, a transliteration of a Greek singular noun kŷdos meaning “praise or renown.” It was at first used largely in academic circles, but it gained wider currency in the 1920s in journalistic use, particularly in headlines: Playwright receives kudos. Kudos given to track record breakers. Kudos is often used, as in these examples, in contexts that do not clearly indicate whether it is singular or plural; and because it ends in -s, the marker of regular plurals in English, kudos has come to be widely regarded and used as a plural noun meaning “accolades” rather than as a singular mass noun meaning “honor or glory.”
The singular form kudo has been produced from kudos by back formation, the same process that gave us the singular pea from pease, originally both singular and plural, sherry from Xeres (an earlier spelling of the Spanish city Jerez), and cherry from the French singular noun cherise. This singular form has developed the meanings “honor” and “statement of praise, accolade.”
Both the singular form kudo and kudos as a plural are today most common in journalistic writing. Some usage guides warn against using them.


[koo-dohz, kyoo-] /ˈku doʊz, ˈkyu-/
plural of kudo.


[koo-doh, kyoo-] /ˈku doʊ, ˈkyu-/
noun, plural kudos for 2.
honor; glory; acclaim:
No greater kudo could have been bestowed.
a statement of praise or approval; accolade; compliment:
one kudo after another.
1925-30; back formation from kudos, construed as a plural
Usage note
See kudos1. Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the web for kudos
  • His inventive use of a tablecloth earns him costume kudos and extra treats.
  • He also receives special kudos for including pecans.
  • He gained kudos for his stand against the brutality with which a subsequent mutiny was quelled.
  • The number shows how many kudos the post has recieved, and the star beside it is what you click to give a kudos.
  • The voluminous and emotional responses ranged from kudos to condemnation.
  • So kudos for not trying to make a buck on something that you don't believe in.
  • Either way, kudos for taking a very easy shot at a very easy target.
  • Thanks for the kudos guys.
  • kudos to you for remaining devoted to your dream and ideas.
  • kudos to you for kicking the chemicals to the curb and opting for clean, organic solutions to clean your house.
British Dictionary definitions for kudos


(functioning as sing) acclaim, glory, or prestige: the kudos of playing Carnegie Hall
Word Origin
C18: from Greek
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for kudos

"fame, renown," 1799, probably originally in university slang, from Greek kydos "glory, fame," especially in battle, literally "that which is heard of" (see caveat). A singular noun in Greek, but the final -s often is mistaken as a plural suffix in English, leading to the barbarous back-formation kudo (attested by 1936).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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