[koh-juh nt]


convincing or believable by virtue of forcible, clear, or incisive presentation; telling.
to the point; relevant; pertinent.

Origin of cogent

1650–60; < Latin cōgent- (stem of cōgēns, present participle of cōgere to drive together, collect, compel), equivalent to cōg- (co- co- + ag-, stem of agere to drive) + -ent- -ent
Related formsco·gent·ly, adverbnon·co·gent, adjectivenon·co·gent·ly, adverbun·co·gent, adjectiveun·co·gent·ly, adverb Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cogent

Contemporary Examples of cogent

Historical Examples of cogent

  • Also she would have cogent reason for keeping such a part in the affair a secret.

    Wilfrid Cumbermede

    George MacDonald

  • Considering his great distress, the reasons must have been cogent indeed.

  • That's the most cogent thought you ever had, but setting the date is the bride's business.

    Masters of Space

    Edward Elmer Smith

  • The Master was unimpeachable; His terse, cogent assertions were unanswerable.

    Jesus the Christ

    James Edward Talmage

  • And yet they have the broadest meaning and the most cogent application.

    The Life Radiant

    Lilian Whiting

British Dictionary definitions for cogent



compelling belief or assent; forcefully convincing
Derived Formscogency, nouncogently, adverb

Word Origin for cogent

C17: from Latin cōgent-, cōgēns, driving together, from cōgere, from co- together + agere to drive
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

Word Origin and History for cogent

1650s, from French cogent "necessary, urgent" (14c.), from Latin cogentem (nominative cogens), present participle of cogere "to curdle; to compel; to collect," literally "to drive together," from com- "together" (see co-) + agere "to drive" (see act (n.)).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper