Word of the Day

Wednesday, May 17, 2000


\kon-yuh-SHEN-tee; kog-nuh-; -SEN-\ , noun;
plural cognoscenti \kon-yuh-SHEN-tee, kog-nuh-\
A person with special knowledge of a subject; a connoisseur.
However, I thought it well to acquaint myself with the latest scientific thinking, so as not to write a tale that would embarrass me among the cognoscenti.
-- Ronald Wright, A Scientific Romance
In the early 1600s, however, beliefs that decried curiosity and restricted information about the "secrets" of nature to a handful of cognoscenti were under attack.
-- Tom Shachtman, Absolute Zero and the Conquest of Cold
Greenspan, to his credit, tells the truth about what he does, but until now, he has done it in a way that only the cognoscenti can understand.
-- Paul Krugman, "Labor Pains", New York Times Magazine, May 23, 1999
Cognoscente derives from the Obsolete Italian, from Latin cognoscens, cognoscent-, present participle of cognoscere, "to know."
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