[ in-koh-it, -eyt or, especially British, in-koh-eyt ]
See synonyms for inchoate on
  1. not yet completed or fully developed; rudimentary.

  2. just begun; incipient.

  1. not organized; lacking order: an inchoate mass of ideas on the subject.

Origin of inchoate

1525–35; <Latin inchoātus, variant of incohātus, past participle of incohāre “to begin, start work on,” perhaps equivalent to in- in-2 + coh(um) “hollow of a yoke into which the pole is fitted” + -ātus -ate1

Other words from inchoate

  • in·cho·ate·ly, adverb
  • in·cho·ate·ness, noun

Words that may be confused with inchoate

Words Nearby inchoate Unabridged Based on the Random House Unabridged Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2023

How to use inchoate in a sentence

British Dictionary definitions for inchoate


adjective(ɪnˈkəʊeɪt, -ˈkəʊɪt)
  1. just beginning; incipient

  2. undeveloped; immature; rudimentary

  1. (of a legal document, promissory note, etc) in an uncompleted state; not yet made specific or valid

verb(ɪnˈkəʊeɪt) (tr)
  1. to begin

Origin of inchoate

C16: from Latin incohāre to make a beginning, literally: to hitch up, from in- ² + cohum yokestrap

Derived forms of inchoate

  • inchoately, adverb
  • inchoateness, noun
  • inchoation, noun
  • inchoative (ɪnˈkəʊətɪv), adjective

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