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[koh-heer-uh nt, -her-] /koʊˈhɪər ənt, -ˈhɛr-/
logically connected; consistent:
a coherent argument.
having a natural or due agreement of parts; harmonious:
a coherent design.
cohering; sticking together:
a coherent mass of sticky candies.
Physics, Optics. of or relating to waves that maintain a fixed phase relationship, as in coherent light, or light in which the electromagnetic waves maintain a fixed and predictable phase relationship with each other over a period of time.
See also laser.
Origin of coherent
1570-80; < Medieval Latin cohērent-, variant of Latin cohaerent- (stem of cohaerēns), present participle of cohaerēre. See cohere, -ent
Related forms
coherently, adverb
noncoherent, adjective
noncoherently, adverb Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2018.
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Examples from the Web for coherently
Contemporary Examples
Historical Examples
  • But when he did find spoken words for it, they came to him coherently, though slowly.

    A Tale of Two Cities Charles Dickens
  • He delivered his master's message as coherently as he could.

    The Purcell Papers Joseph Sheridan Le Fanu
  • So far, it was evidently written at one sitting, calmly and coherently.

    The Slipper Point Mystery Augusta Huiell Seaman
  • At first she was hardly able to speak, or even to think, coherently.

  • It was a necessity of his nature to think clearly and coherently.

  • If she's sober after a while, perhaps she'll be able to talk to me coherently.

  • She could not have explained it coherently to herself, but she felt it no less keenly.

    Comrade Yetta Albert Edwards
  • Mimo had not coherently given the address, on the telephone.

    The Reason Why Elinor Glyn
  • And, "Go steadfastly, coherently, continuously; only so can you go where you will."

British Dictionary definitions for coherently


capable of logical and consistent speech, thought, etc
logical; consistent and orderly
cohering or sticking together
(physics) (of two or more waves) having the same phase or a fixed phase difference: coherent light
(of a system of units) consisting only of units the quotient or product of any two of which yield the unit of the resultant quantity
Derived Forms
coherently, adverb
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 coherently



1550s, from Middle French cohérent (16c.), from Latin cohaerentem (nominative cohaerens), present participle of cohaerere "cohere," from com- "together" (see co-) + haerere "to stick" (see hesitation).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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