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[koh-bawl] /ˈkoʊ bɔl/
noun, Computers.
a programming language particularly suited for writing programs to process large files of data, using a vocabulary of common English words, phrases, and sentences.
Origin of COBOL
1955-60; co(mmon) b(usiness)-o(riented) l(anguage) Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2017.
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British Dictionary definitions for COBOL


a high-level computer programming language designed for general commercial use
Word Origin
C20: co(mmon) b(usiness) o(riented) l(anguage)
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 COBOL

1960, U.S. Defense Department acronym, from "Common Business-Oriented Language."

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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COBOL in Science
A programming language developed in the late 1950s and early 1960s and used especially for business applications. It is closer to English than many other high-level languages, making it easier to learn.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary
Copyright © 2002. Published by Houghton Mifflin. All rights reserved.
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COBOL in Technology
The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010
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Related Abbreviations for COBOL


Common Business-Oriented Language
The American Heritage® Abbreviations Dictionary, Third Edition
Copyright © 2005 by Houghton Mifflin Company.
Published by Houghton Mifflin Company. All rights reserved.
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