Definition of cordon in English:

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Pronunciation: /ˈkôrdn/


1A line or circle of police, soldiers, or guards preventing access to or from an area or building: troops threw a cordon around the headquarters
More example sentences
  • Following the discovery, police threw a cordon round the area and set up a 24-hour guard to protect the site.
  • Soldiers forming a cordon around the police station became involved, and a wall was demolished by a British tank as they struggled to ‘collect’ the men, the MoD said.
  • Police set up cordons around the area and closed the lower end of the High Street while firefighters began carrying out their investigations.
barrier, line, row, chain, ring, circle;
3 Architecture another term for stringcourse.


[with object] (cordon off)
Prevent access to or from (an area or building) by surrounding it with police or other guards: the city center was cordoned off after fires were discovered in two stores
More example sentences
  • A large area surrounding the house has been cordoned off by police tape.
  • People living nearby were woken with the news at around 3am and the area was cordoned off by police tape.
  • The crews were at the scene for four hours and the area was cordoned off as police and fire investigation officers began an examination the scene.
close off, shut off, seal off, fence off, separate off, isolate, enclose, surround


Late Middle English (denoting an ornamental braid worn on the person): from Italian cordone, augmentative of corda, and French cordon, diminutive of corde, both from Latin chorda 'string, rope' (see cord). sense 3 of the noun, the earliest of the current noun senses, dates from the early 18th century.

Words that rhyme with cordon

Auden, broaden, Gordon, Hordern, Jordan, warden

For editors and proofreaders

Syllabification: cor·don

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