Word: cogitable

Pronunciation: KAH-jə-tə-b(ə)l

Part of Speech: adjective

Definition: able to be grasped by the mind; conceivable

Source: Oxford Dictionaries

So I was doing vocabulary research on Oxford Dictionaries‘ website recently when my attention was drawn to the Word of the Day. I found it interesting because it reminded me of another word I had written about before: “cogent“. Both words refer to knowledge and the mind in some way, so it’s no surprise that I had to add this new word to my vocabulary queue. I sometimes wonder if it’s “cogitable” that a person can love vocabulary as much as I do!

To be “cogitable” is to be conceivable, that is, able to be grasped by the mind. The word arose in late Middle English and comes from the Latin adjective cogitabilis, meaning “thinkable” or “imaginable”. This adjective stems from the verb cogitare “to think”, which in turn comprises the prefix co- “together” and the verb agitare “to consider”.

When I first read the word “cogitable”, I assumed it meant something along the lines of “knowledgeable”, similar to how “cogent” means “logical”. However, it’s actually a synonym of “conceivable”, an idea that’s capable of being imagined. It’s worth noting that this adjective is considered rare and is evidently related to the verb “cogitate”, meaning to “think deeply about something”. If the details in your stories can easily be grasped by your characters (or your readers), you may want to consider including the word “cogitable” in your vocabulary!

What are your thoughts on this word? Any suggestions for future “Word of the Week” featured words?

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