Dictionary.com

cordillera

[ kawr-dl-yair-uh, -air-uh, kawr-dil-er-uh ]
/ ˌkɔr dlˈyɛər ə, -ˈɛər ə, kɔrˈdɪl ər ə /
Save This Word!

noun

a chain of mountains, usually the principal mountain system or mountain axis of a large landmass.

QUIZZES

THINK YOU’VE GOT A HANDLE ON THIS US STATE NICKNAME QUIZ?

Did you ever collect all those state quarters? Put them to good use on this quiz about curious state monikers and the facts around them.
Question 1 of 8
Mississippi’s nickname comes from the magnificent trees that grow there. What is it?

Origin of cordillera

First recorded in 1695–1705; from Spanish, derivative of cordilla, diminutive of cuerda “rope, string” (from Latin chorda ). Cordillera originally applied to the Andes Mountains in South America and later to the same mountain chain in Central America and Mexico; see origin at cord

OTHER WORDS FROM cordillera

cor·dil·le·ran, adjective
Dictionary.com Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2021

Example sentences from the Web for cordillera

British Dictionary definitions for cordillera

cordillera
/ (ˌkɔːdɪlˈjɛərə) /

noun

a series of parallel ranges of mountains, esp in the northwestern US

Derived forms of cordillera

cordilleran, adjective

Word Origin for cordillera

C18: from Spanish, from cordilla, literally: a little cord, from cuerda mountain range, cord
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

Scientific definitions for cordillera

cordillera
[ kôr′dl-yârə ]

A long and wide chain of mountains, especially the main mountain range of a large landmass. Cordilleras can include the valleys, basins, rivers, lakes, plains, and plateaus between parallel chains of a single mountain system, or they can consist solely of a string of connected mountain peaks.
The American Heritage® Science Dictionary Copyright © 2011. Published by Houghton Mifflin Harcourt Publishing Company. All rights reserved.
See Today's Synonym