7:47 AM EST, January 23, 2012
Each week The Sun's John McIntyre presents a moderately obscure but evocative word with which you may not be familiar — another brick to add to the wall of your working vocabulary. This week's word:
A fine old word, with us since the sixteenth century, cozen (pronounced CUZ-en) is particularly handy in an election year. It means variously to cheat, to defraud, to deceive, to dupe. The etymology is variously accounted for. One conjecture is that it derives from the Italian cozzone, "middleman" or "broker." Another is that it is from the Old French cosson, "horse-trader." The noun is cozenage.
There is a pretty fair chance that, no matter for whom you cast your vote this year, you may come to feel subsequently that you have been cozened.
Example: From Anthony Trollope's He Knew He Was Right: "A man who was cozened into leaving every shilling away from his own children."
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