verb (used with object), cog·nized, cog·niz·ing.

to perceive; become conscious of; know.

Also especially British, cog·nise.

Origin of cognize

First recorded in 1650–60; back formation from cognizance
Related formscog·niz·er, nounpre·cog·nize, verb (used with object), pre·cog·nized, pre·cog·niz·ing.un·cog·nized, adjective Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2019

Examples from the Web for cognize

Historical Examples of cognize

  • To think an object and to cognize an object are by no means the same thing.

  • Thus we cognize only the necessity of effects in nature, the causes of which are given us.

  • Still, you could not cognize in concreto the object of your ideas in any experience.

  • By attribute, I understand that by which I cognize any mode of existence.

  • To know or cognize is, to know the Cause; when we know the Cause, we are satisfied with our cognition.


    George Grote

British Dictionary definitions for cognize




(tr) to perceive, become aware of, or know
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 cognize

1650s, back-formation from cognizance. Related: Cognized; cognizing.

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper