- knowledge, understanding, or cognizance; mental perception: an idea beyond one’s ken.
- range of sight or vision.
verb (used with object), kenned or kent, ken·ning.
- Chiefly Scot.
- to know, have knowledge of or about, or be acquainted with (a person or thing).
- to understand or perceive (an idea or situation).
- Scots Law. to acknowledge as heir; recognize by a judicial act.
- Archaic. to see; descry; recognize.
- British Dialect Archaic.
- to declare, acknowledge, or confess (something).
- to teach, direct, or guide (someone).
verb (used without object), kenned or kent, ken·ning.
- British Dialect.
- to have knowledge of something.
- to understand.
- range of knowledge or perception (esp in the phrases beyond or in one’s ken)
verb kens, kenning, kenned or kent (kɛnt)
- Scot and Northern English dialect to know
- Scot and Northern English dialect to understand; perceive
- (tr) archaic to see
“to know,” Scottish dialect, from Old English cennan “make known, declare, acknowledge” (in late Old English also “to know”), originally “make to know,” causative of cunnan “to become acquainted with, to know” (see can (v.)). Cognate with German kennen, Danish kjende, Swedish känna. Related: Kenned; kenning.
“house where thieves meet,” 1560s, vagabonds’ slang, probably a shortening of kennel.
“range of sight,” 1580s, a nautical abbreviation of kenning.